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Comment: No sensible person ever though it was impossible (Score 2, Informative) 153

by daveschroeder (#48027003) Attached to: Apple Fixes Shellshock In OS X

But even here, again, when you look at a typical OS X desktop system, now many people:

1. Have apache enabled AND exposed to the public internet (i.e., not behind a NAT router, firewall, etc)?

2. Even have apache or any other services enabled at all?

...both of which would be required for this exploit. The answer? Vanishingly small to be almost zero.

So, in the context of OS X, it's yet another theoretical exploit; "theoretical" in the sense that it effects essentially zero conventional OS X desktop users. Could there have been a worm or other attack vector which then exploited the bash vulnerability on OS X? Sure, I suppose. But there wasn't, and it's a moot point since a patch is now available within days of the disclosure.

And people running OS X as web servers exposed to the public internet, with the demise of the standalone Mac OS X Server products as of 10.6, is almost a thing of yesteryear itself.

Nothing has changed since that era: all OSes have always been vulnerable to attacks, both via local and remote by various means, and there have been any number of vulnerabilities that have only impacted UN*X systems, Linux and OS X included, and not Windows, over very many years. So yeah, nothing has changed, and OS X (and iOS) is still a very secure OS, by any definition or viewpoint of the definition of "secure", when viewed alongside Windows (and Android).

Comment: Help. I am trapped On Beta: Addendum (Score 3, Informative) 185

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47958083) Attached to: NY Magistrate: Legal Papers Can Be Served Via Facebook

P.S.

Timothy and other Slashdot Editors,

I am afraid that I must post an addendum to my previous call for assistance. The difficulty of the interface appears to be more considerable than I had initially realised.

Unfortunately, the interface does not load all comments on the page. In fact, only one comment is loaded on any given page, and the "load more comments" area / button provided, when pressed, does not in fact load anything. As such I am unable to determine whether my previous comment has been replied to, or indeed whether it has been posted at all. In short I can no longer see or read comments.

In the hope that this message will be seen, I will periodically attempt to post messages of aid in a scattering of stories. Whether these "post in a bottle" will reach you, or float at all, is something I can only hope for at this point.

In the meantime I shall see if the pieces of flat design driftwood can be lash togther into a makeshift civilisation of sorts. However this island appears quite desolate. The floating header follows whereever I go. Perhaps I will try to converse with it.

In any case I remain your hopeful servant,

A poster trapped in Beta

Comment: Help. I am trapped On Beta (Score -1, Offtopic) 185

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47958055) Attached to: NY Magistrate: Legal Papers Can Be Served Via Facebook

Timothy and other Slashdot Editors,

I regret making such an offtopic post, but I am afraid that I have found myself trapped on the "new" new Slashdot Beta site and I cannot seem to leave it.

The site features an extremely modern "flat" design. So modern in fact that there do not appear to be any visible links, menus, navigation bars, page divisions, or icons at all. A "slide out" option to move back to Slashdot classic pops up from time to time, only to disappear as I try to click it. I believe I may need to use a "charm" type gesture or spell in order to properly summon such advanced features, but I am not privy to the precise incantations.

As such I am currently stuck on the new Slashdot Beta with no way of returning to a more usable interface. I find this most unsatisfactory, somewhat frustrating, and feel I have little other option but to send this call for assistance.

I possess an advanced STEM degree and over 25 years expierience with technology, software and the web. I feel I can positively contribute to discussion on this site, but this new interface is making the site too difficult to use.

Yours

A user trapped on Beta

Comment: Re:What's your suggestion for intelligence work? (Score 1) 504

by daveschroeder (#47938235) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

An oversimplification. The US, UK, and allies variously broke many cipher systems throughout WWII. Still the US benefitted from this.

What if the Germans were using, say, Windows, Android phones, SSL, Gmail, Yahoo, and Skype, instead of Enigma machines?

Comment: What's your suggestion for intelligence work? (Score 1) 504

by daveschroeder (#47938053) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

I presume you wouldn't say it was "wrong" of the United States to crack the German and Japanese codes in WWII...

...so when US adversaries (and lets just caveat this by saying people YOU, personally, agree are legitimate US adversaries) don't use their own "codes", but instead share the same systems, networks, services, devices, cloud providers, operating systems, encryption schemes, and so on, that Americans and much of the rest of the world uses, would you suggest that they should be off limits?

This isn't so much a law enforcement question as a question of how to do SIGINT in the modern digital world, but given the above, and given that intelligence requires secrecy in order to be effective, how would you suggest the United States go after legitimate targets? Or should we not be able to, because that power "might" be able to be abused -- as can any/all government powers, by definition?

This simplistic view that the only purpose of the government in a free and democratic society must be to somehow subjugate, spy on, and violate the rights of its citizens is insane, while actual totalitarian and non-free states, to say nothing of myriad terrorist and other groups, press their advantage. And why wouldn't they? The US and its ever-imperfect system of law is not the great villain in the world.

Take a step back and get some perspective. And this is not a rhetorical question: if someone can tell me their solution for how we should be able to target technologies that are fundamentally shared with innocent Americans and foreigners everywhere while still keeping such sources, methods, capabilities, and techniques secret, I'm all ears. And if you believe the second a technology is shared it should become magically off-limits because power might be abused, you are insane -- or, more to the point, you believe you have some moral high ground which, ironically, would actually result in severe disadvantages for the system of free society you would claim to support.

Comment: Have they Denied? (Score 2, Interesting) 200

NSA officials were unable to find any evidence Snowden ever had.

This is essentially the "I do not recall" equivalent of paperwork investigations.

The essential question here is whether the NSA can conclusively deny that Snowden never raised concerns at the agency. Since if he did raise concerns, he probably would have raised them to people personally, a document search is not nessesarily going to uncover whether he did.

What will uncover this conclusively is a simple interview of NSA and affiliate company employees and especially supervisors who worked with Snowden. But since such a set of interviews would either a) reveal that he did raise concerns, b) involve people having to sign their names to untruths, or most unlikely c) reveal he really raised nothing, then I think it's easier for the NSA to just pretend that a half-assed email server word search constitutes an appropriate investigation.

Comment: Re:Gamers are the Victims Here (Score 1) 1134

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47830737) Attached to: Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

First Person Shooter players do not represent the entire gaming community. This stereotype is being used to label Pokemon and Super Mario players as misogynists and bigots. All gamers are being tarred with a toxic brush.

This kind of labelling is wrong and morally bankrupt. The gaming community is being forced to defend itself against these kinds of disgraceful libels, by people who are genuinely ethical bankrupts. Simply browse the #Gamergate and #NotYourShield twitter hashtags to get a sense of where these accusations are coming from, and exactly who is in denial.

Comment: Because SJWs are not Feminists/Progressives (Score 4, Insightful) 1134

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47830599) Attached to: Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Question, why do you (generally speaking) feel the need to lump all the people who disagree with you together into one group, give that group a sarcastic name,

I call the people involved in this scandal "Social Justice Warriors (SJWs)" principally because I refuse to insult the feminist or progressive movements by calling these people with feminists or progressives. Genuine second-wave feminists have publicly criticised their behaviour.

If you want to understand the difference, look up the #Gamergate and #NotYourShield hashtags on twitter. The Social Justice Warriors are hateful, disingenuous, at times sociopathic bigots. They are adult, internet-empowered versions of the bullies and tormentors which many gamers remember from secondary school.

Gamers are the victims here. The modus-operandi of the SJWs is to cast themselves in the cloth of underprivileged groups -- most SJWs are in fact white, upper middle class, college aged -- then proceed to level accusations of privilege, bigotry, and misogyny against just about anyone involved in gaming for even the slightest perceived infractions. A climate of fear has developed, first in the indie and later wider gaming industry as a result of the "social justice" witchhunts which these people regularly engage in. Worse, this has resulted in SJW-aligned developers and journalists rising to positions of power and being first in line for awards and increasingly development funding, with cronyism trumping competence.

For Gaming, so often a hobby of last resort for the excluded and isolated in society, this is an awful and tragic outcome. For gamers, male, female, straight, gay or trans, it is a frightening development. Their hobby, their refuge, is being taken over by bullies.

Because their rhetoric and especially actions come across as so farcically disingenuous, I don't believe for a second that SJWs actually believe in or support the causes of homosexuals or transgender people in video games. Their support for women is also largely forced, and disturbingly biased towards the conservative view of women as a weaker sex who must be protected/defended (A view consistently challenged by the games industry over the years).

My honest opinion of SJWs is that they are privileged Neo-liberals, who adopt a forced social justice persona both to project their own (increasingly obvious) bigotry onto others, and ultimately to benefit themselves socially and financially. They are disingenuous, extremist bullies, and the gaming community is under co-ordinated PR attack, and has been almost completely censored on gaming websites.

The Social Justice Warriors are right about one thing though; this is a historical moment. Whether they win or lose, the GamerGate scandal will be seen as a watershed moment in the history of online-communities, and who controls them. Two weeks ago, I would never have believed that a clique so small could all but take-over a community so large, but it is becoming clear that this is precisely what (almost?) happened to gaming. There are lessons to be learned here, unrelated to the immediate issues, and I only hope the right people will take note and heed them.

Comment: Re:I predict (Score 1) 1134

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47830035) Attached to: Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

Is it possible that some of the entertaining, amiable geeks that I spar with, party with, code with and blow things up with turn feral and run in packs when I'm not around?

It is unlikely. If you read further into this scandal and its surrounding issues, you will find that it is the gaming community which has been libelled by a clique of disingenuous bullies. These people will routinely label their opponents as bigots while displaying shocking levels of bigotry and hatred themselves. You can see ample evidence of this behaviour in these very comments.

For a better understanding of where the real "Ugly incidents" in this scadal are coming from, simply look up the #GamerGate and especially #Notyourshield twitter hashtags. The vitriol, hatred, and misrepresentations in this debate are coming from Social Justice Warriors (I refuse to apply the terms feminist or progressive to these frauds.)

Comment: Gamers are the Victims Here (Score 1, Insightful) 1134

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47827269) Attached to: Combating Recent, Ugly Incidents of Misogyny In Gamer Culture

This isn't about Zoe Quinn. This is about Gamers being bullied and their hobby being culturally colonised by corrupt hypocrites.

Gamers are the victims here. The people crying misogyny are the real bigots. Look up the harshtags #Gamergate and especially #notyourshield on twitter to get a real feel for what is going on here.

Comment: Re:Troll much? (Score 1) 613

by ObsessiveMathsFreak (#47813735) Attached to: You Got Your Windows In My Linux

Well it does solve some problems, just not problems many server administrators largely cared about while creating problems some systems administrators really do care about.

Well, if the project really is an NSA backed obfuscation of Linux a la SELinux, then confusing sysadmins and hampering their ability to control their own systems would be less of a bug and more of a feature.

Comment: Re:Apparently the trolls are out here, too (Score 1) 1262

I think the wholesale failure of web 2.0 sites to facilitate any discussion of these issues over the last few weeks proves just how shallow their promise of a brave new web is. The scope and scale of the censorship seen around this issue is to my knowledge unprecedented.

Slashdot had the right ethics and mores all along, Anonymous Cowards and all. The community can mod them down, but even they should be free to speak.

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