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Comment: Re:Simplier solution at the carrier level (Score 1) 233

by laird (#47760383) Attached to: California Passes Law Mandating Smartphone Kill Switch

All the law does is increase the cost/effort of reselling stolen phones. It's impossible, as with any security measure, to prevent anything 100% of the time. But if you make it more complex/expensive, it discourages the attack because criminals will move on to easier/more rewarding targets.

Comment: Re:Worldwide reach (Score 1) 233

by laird (#47760317) Attached to: California Passes Law Mandating Smartphone Kill Switch

In the 'old days' hacking was about learning and proving coolness (e.g. by breaking into something and proving it, but doing no damage because that's not cool). These days much of it is about money. Either way, there's not much reason to go brick a bunch of phones randomly - you'd just piss off a lot of people, leading to arrests when the figure out who did it.

Comment: Re:Hey, great idea here, guys... (Score 1) 75

by laird (#47760237) Attached to: Apple CarPlay Rollout Delayed By Some Carmakers

It's what CarPlay does. Which apps Apple approves is up to Apple, though they showed about a dozen apps on the web page and invited inquiries, so it doesn't feel like they're aiming at "a few carefully selected partners". The language on the page is about apps being well designed not to distract users from the road.

Comment: Re:For Guys Who Are About 40th in Political Contri (Score 2, Interesting) 493

by laird (#47755167) Attached to: Net Neutrality Is 'Marxist,' According To a Koch-Backed Astroturf Group

The Koch brothers get criticized a lot because they're secretive billionaires with a political agenda, who pump their fortune into the US political system through sneaky means on a massive scale, funneling their money through hundreds of "anonymous" groups so that it's difficult to trace, writing legislation to promote their agenda and businesses, and trying to get it passed when nobody is looking, and generally doing their best to subvert the democratic process. Oddly enough, the vast majority of Americans don't approve of their methods, and don't agree with their agenda, so their behavior generates criticism when it's discovered.

And don't think for a minute that Republicans don't expand government - when they're in charge, they expand the government, and run up spending and debt, faster than Democrats. They just like spending money on different things than Democrats - wars and tax breaks for the wealthy and corporations, for example, rather than education and infrastructure. That and they like to regulate people's private lives a lot more than Democrats, while Democrats prefer personal liberties and regulating businesses.

Comment: Re:Not Net Neutrality (Score 1) 493

by laird (#47755101) Attached to: Net Neutrality Is 'Marxist,' According To a Koch-Backed Astroturf Group

It's not just dropping packages. ISPs can come up with all sorts of ways to distort traffic to extract more revenue, which can be far more subtle (and evil) than selectively dropping packages. For example, when customers try to go to Google, the ISP could send them to Bing (for a kickback), or rewrite Amazon affiliate tags so all Amazon purchases pay a percentage of the ISP. These aren't hypothetical - look at what wireless cell phone companies do to their customers and to content providers - it's a nightmare - and ask yourself why they haven't done the same thing to the internet? And if there aren't any rules enforcing good behavior, ask yourself how long those companies good behavior will last in the face of the opportunity for increased profits?

And do those arguing that they don't want the FCC "regulating" the internet, ask yourself what happens to the internet if there aren't any rules, but all participants start breaking everything possible in order to extract fees?

Comment: Re:Standards? (Score 2) 75

by laird (#47732077) Attached to: Apple CarPlay Rollout Delayed By Some Carmakers

Note that the car companies care about compatability, and there's a while ecosystem built around using cigarette lighters into cars. That's why they're all over minivans - they're no longer for cigarettes, they're now the standard car power plugs. :-)

That being said, cars are starting to get USB jacks. That's a good thing. But car technology changes slowly, for good reasons - if they put something into millions of consumer cars, people have to live with it for many years, so they are cautious about making changes.

Comment: Re:Standards? (Score 1) 75

by laird (#47732057) Attached to: Apple CarPlay Rollout Delayed By Some Carmakers

I'd think that as a part of integrating iPhones/Lightning cables into cars, Apple would have to commit to supporting the technology for 5+ years, with backwards compatibility, so that people could plug their phones 5 years from now into the car that they buy now and have it "just work". Both the car companies and Apple care about that. Google too, most likely.

"A car is just a big purse on wheels." -- Johanna Reynolds

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