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+ - Senator Al Franken accuses AT+T of 'skirting' net neutrality rules->

Submitted by McGruber
McGruber (1417641) writes "In a letter to the U.S. Federal Communication Commission and the Department of Justice, Senator Al Franken warned that letting AT&T acquire Direct TV could turn AT&T into a gatekeeper to the mobile Internet. Franken also complained that AT&T took inappropriate steps to block Internet applications like Google Voice and Skype: "AT&T has a history of skirting the spirit, and perhaps the letter" of the government's rules on net neutrality, Franken wrote."
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+ - Thousands of leaked KGB files are now open to the public->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "Over 20 years after being smuggled out of Russia, a trove of KGB documents are being opened up to the public for the first time. The leaked documents include thousands of files and represent what the FBI is said to view as "the most complete and extensive intelligence ever received from any source." The documents include KGB information on secret Russian weapons caches, Russian spies, and KGB information on the activities of Pope John Paul II. Known as the Mitrokhin Archive, the files are all available as of today at Churchill College's Archives Centre."
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Comment: Re: Failsafe? (Score 1) 463

Cameras can fail, the communication links between the camera and whatever serves video stream can fail, the displays themselves can fail, power to the displays can fail, etc.

If you do a simple HUD overlaid on top of the conventional glass window, at least you are not completely screwed even if there is a compounded instrumentation failure as long as you can still get visual cues somewhere such as the moon, stars, city lights, runway and slope guidance beacons when landing, etc.

As long as you still have some degree of flight control left, line-of-sight, skills and luck, you can land a plane even with extensive instrumentation failures - there have been many seemingly impossible yet successful landings.

Having cockpit displays/HUDs to aggregate, complement and supplement existing instruments is fine but for completely replacing direct line-of-sight as a backup? I don't think so.

Comment: Re:Will local rights holders sue? (Score 2) 153

by InvalidError (#47399323) Attached to: New Zealand ISP's Anti-Geoblocking Service Makes Waves

Geoblocking and all the unnecessary middlemen that try to use it to secure their artificial geographic monopolies need to die if they refuse to compete globally.

To be fair to local online vendors though, there would need to be an international standard for sales taxes such as one harmonized rate per country so international vendors would at least not need to deal with the countless regional variants within countries when charging foreign taxes. Another possibility would be to let financial institutions charge domestic taxes on the taxable part of electronic purchases since they are well-versed in the tax codes of whatever regions they do business in so vendors would not need to worry about managing international taxes at all.

Comment: Android development guidelines recommend Java (Score 1) 69

by InvalidError (#47373315) Attached to: ARM Launches Juno Reference Platform For 64-bit Android Developers

If developers do not want to worry about the underlying hardware, all they need to do is stick to Google's developer guidelines and use Java. Let the JRE and native recompiler abstract all the hardware-dependent stuff. Not quite as compute/power-efficient (at least in theory) but from what I have seen, there seems to be tons of developers who waste tons of cycles regardless of portable vs native anyway.

Comment: Re:It's too late (Score 1) 669

I'm using Classic Shell too and I agree it does fix nearly everything that annoyed me in Win 8.x

Many people on the other hand are still upset (exaggeratedly so IMO) with needing third-party applications to restore classic start menu functionality or are adamantly opposed to any sort of such work-around.

Comment: Re:Here's the problem. (Score 1) 205

If your "secure" applications run on Linux, Windows or any other major modern OS, that's hundreds of million lines of code that even experienced developers have little to no insight into and many of the security exploits that pop up, Heartbleed being the latest high-profile case, are tied to baked code and libraries that get reused by thousands of developers with implicit trust since almost nobody can afford to re-audit that code for themselves even when they have the expertise to do so.

Even if your application's own code is technically flawlessly secure, there are countless ways the OS, other applications running on the same machine and hardware may be used to undermine your otherwise perfect security.

The problems extend far beyond self-taught programming... and self-taught programmers are not intrinsically bad either.

Comment: Re:Here's the problem. (Score 1) 205

Systems these days are so hopelessly complex due to running full-blown OSes (mainly Linux derivatives like Android these days) for convenience that guaranteeing security is practically impossible most of the time since nobody ever knows the system inside-out so everyone is relying on everyone else making their own part of the source tree work properly without unforeseen unexpected interactions between software components and also with the hardware.

Most developers and companies do not have the time and resources to go over and get intimately acquainted with every minute detail of their development environment, libraries, OS, etc. to understand the millions of ways things can possibly go wrong assuming they even have access to the source code in the first place. If they had to do that before getting to work on their actual project, most of them would die from old age before doing anything so demanding that degree of understanding is simply not realistic.

The threat of severe legal penalties for things that are often nearly impossible to foresee would make tons of would-be developers give up on the idea - it simply makes no sense.

Comment: Re:Mozilla doesn't build hardware (Score 3, Interesting) 89

by asa (#47289059) Attached to: Mozilla Is Working On a Firefox OS-powered Streaming Stick

Your attempt to confuse here isn't really helpful.

Google does *sell* Google Glass and Nexus phones and tablets and Chromecast and Nest and soon Dropcams and probably more. They are "Google products" branded and sold by Google as theirs.

Mozilla only has one device that it works on directly, the Firefox OS Flame reference phone. The rest of the hardware you see out there is being made and sold by someone else.

And that's not just true of the hardware. Much of the work going on to extend Firefox OS software into areas outside of phones is being done by third parties for their products.

Comment: Mozilla doesn't build hardware (Score 4, Informative) 89

by asa (#47288955) Attached to: Mozilla Is Working On a Firefox OS-powered Streaming Stick

Mozilla doesn't build hardware. We make software, including Firefox OS. Firefox OS is a completely open platform freely available for any company to build on top of without restriction. There are dozens of companies building Firefox OS-based products today and there will be more tomorrow, covering mobile phones, tablets, TVs, set top boxes, game consoles, streaming dongles, wearables, and more. Some of those companies are working directly with Mozilla and others are taking the code and running with it on their own.

+ - SpaceX Falcon 9R vertical take-off and landing test flight->

Submitted by schwit1
schwit1 (797399) writes "The competition heats up: SpaceX today released a new video of the most recent Falcon 9R vertical take-off and landing test flight.

Video below the fold. The flight was to test the deployment and use of fins for controlling the stage during its return to Earth. Watch them unfold and adjust themselves beginning at about 1:15 into the video. In the second half you can see them near the top of the stage.

Yet another video from SpaceX of the world’s most blase cows.

You can imagine new cows to the herd, reacting to the launch as the conditioned cows just yawn, just another 100 foot tall rocket launching and landing nearby. Nothing to see here."

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To write good code is a worthy challenge, and a source of civilized delight. -- stolen and paraphrased from William Safire