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Comment Re:Slashdot crying wolf again... (Score 1) 117 117

By the time you finished with all the lawsuits/etc the addresses wouldn't be useful. We need to get past IPv4. Putting it off for another few months won't help that.

That said, there are a lot of things about IPv6 that are rather annoying. There aren't really a lot of good DHCP options if you want to use NAT, and if you don't want to use NAT then anytime your router prefix changes the external IPs of all the hosts on the network change. That is a fairly big change from how things work today, and I think most early adopters don't notice because they tend to have static IPs, but that is unlikely to be the case once it is mass-adopted.

Comment When to upgrade? (Score 1) 164 164

So, my sense is that Windows 10 is the "odd-numbered" version that I'll eventually end up upgrading to. Right now I do most of my serious stuff on linux, and maintain a decent windows 7 PC mainly for gaming purposes (since I still have many games that are not linux-compatible). I tend to view my windows PC more like a gaming console as a result.

So, when is the right time to upgrade? I suspect that it will be once DirectX 12 is available, stable, and in some kind of use. At the very least I'll want to wait until the rumor mill indicates that my graphics drivers (Radeon) are reasonably stable on Win10.

I'm also torn on whether to upgrade in place or just wipe and reinstall (especially since I'm still running my OS from the non-SSD drive in the system). Is installing Win10 from scratch supported, and free?

My guess is that it will be at least a few months before I'll be upgrading...

Comment Re:Touch it with a 12 mile pole. (Score 1) 129 129

Well, ultimately you can do whatever you can get away with. Build some oil platforms, and what is anybody going to do about it? Of course, others could also start building platforms as well in competition, and then the Chinese are left with the same dilemma. The only way to truly enforce exclusivity is to either go to war or start imposing economic sanctions/etc, but if the US were to start putting sanctions on China that could get messy fast with all the trade.

Nobody really wants to get into a shooting war over this stuff.

Comment Re:Pfft! (Score 1) 49 49

A compromise on the length argument is a registration fee, that is exponential. So, having copyright for a year might be a buck or two. Having it for 5 years might be a few hundred. Having it for 10 might be a few million. Having it for 15 might start to go into the billions range. That can obviously be tuned and tweaked. The point is that copyright is a public sacrifice and should be done for public benefit. Companies can decide how valuable that renewal is and let it go or buy in.

Comment Re:Typing passwords (Score 1) 365 365

Many SaaS vendors are moving towards new generation of logins. I see many vendors removing OpenID in general and we're seeing an equally high number of companies embracing SSO.

Ugh, unfortunately the SaaS vendor I'm working with right now isn't one of them.

OAuth2? Nope. Another password to remember/reset/etc.

Webservices? Nope. Drop a file onto an FTP site which is polled, and poll the site yourself.

XML? Sort-of - it is their least-preferred file format which they try to avoid at all costs. Oh yeah, they have failures to parse xml files that W3 validates (for syntax, not semantics). I'm sure that there are issues with their non-xml-file parsers for the majority of the files we're dealing with since they avoid xml, but since you can't just use validators/etc to check the files we just run into them from time to time in production.

But, hey, our internal IT group is just as brain dead as they seem to also be writing their own XML parsers judging by some of the failures I've seen.

Comment Re:A plea to fuck off. (Score 4, Insightful) 365 365

Password managers are essentially making a bet that the risk of your hard drive being compromised is far less likely than a website being compromised.

If your hard drive is compromised then your keystrokes are being logged and your cookies are being extracted, and any website you log into will be compromised. The password manager isn't really adding that much more risk here.

Comment Re:BBC / other state broadcasters? (Score 1) 132 132

I somewhat agree, but there is a tragedy of the commons element to this. I do think that it makes sense to encourage reciprocation, via things like cross-licensing. By all means make it free to countries that have low incomes and so on.

I feel similarly about drug patents. I think that governments should start doing end-to-end R&D and keep the patents. They should be licensed for free to any domestic manufacturer, to manufacturers in countries that make similar investments and reciprocate, and for local domestic consumption in the third world. That would make drugs dirt cheap (due to the tax-based funding and competition for manufacture), but also encourage other first-world countries to make similar investments which increases the value of the public domain.

When you just force countries that invest to make their content freely, then you encourage freeloaders.

And I'm fine with "cross-licensing" being cross-domain. Maybe one country makes lots of free movies, and another country has really amazing free museums with subsidized hotel rates, so the two countries make their services available to the citizens of the other.

Comment Re:Iranians with payload delivery ability (Score 1) 163 163

IMHO, one of the remaining hurdles to us getting past the Great Filter is the proliferation of technology and doomsday weaponry to all corners of the globe.

Honestly, I really only see the solution to this problem being the proliferation of humans to such an extent that warfare using the most powerful weapons available is not a threat to a substantial portion of the human race. If people colonized half the galaxy a nuclear war would take centuries to reach everybody simply due to the speed of light, to say nothing of effective countermeasures.

Obviously that isn't going to happen anytime soon.

The problem is that it is very difficult to put the genie back in the bottle. The design of a nuclear weapon is basically just information, and everybody can see just how hard it is to keep information under wraps. Over time we've seen increasingly more dangerous weapons coming into the hands of the general public. Maybe if the entirety of the human population could be kept under surveillance we could completely prevent the proliferation of such technology, but simply having an organization capable of such a feat is in some sense an existential threat of a different sort.

Comment Re:I'm all for it (Score 1) 394 394

Furthermore, refueling an airplane does not take less than two minutes. That's the time you need just to plug in the fuel line.

He said, "But it would make loading and unloading the plane a matter of two minutes or something which is less time than it takes to refuel the plane."

Ie, refueling takes MORE than two minutes.

Comment Re:What Were They Hoping For? (Score 1) 95 95

Really, Hacking Team was just doing things the way a very small segment of society which currently holds most financial capital thinks everybody should be operating.

FTFY - SOPA, TPP, etc.. are not products of the Software industry. I am pretty sure I agree with your point under the surface, but the generalization is plain wrong.

They are certainly the way the software industry thinks everybody should be operating, which is all I claimed. I did not claim that all of those laws/treaties/etc were products of the software industry. I'm not sure how you can claim that the Uniform Computer Information Transactions Act wasn't though.

Comment Re:'Open source' (Score 1) 46 46

Simple access doesn't count as distribution in this case. The GPLv2 applies to code distributed under the GPLv2. It isn't a property of the code itself, and the fact that you have GPLv2ed code doesn't mean you have to give it to me, nor do I get the right to the code by simply having access. If you deliberately give me the code, you have to do so under the GPLv2, and I have all the rights that grants.

You give your employee the code when you give them access to it. Before they couldn't see the code. Now they can. They gave it to you.

The FSF holds that having employees work on company code isn't distribution.

That's nice, but they aren't the authors of the code in question, even if they're the authors of the license. If the kernel authors intended the code to be copyable by the employee and the license says that it is, then it is.

Consider that I've got a lot of company-owned proprietary code on my work computer. If that counted as distributing it to me, I'd own one copy of the code.

Well, you do have one copy of the code in your possession - the one on the server. That doesn't mean that you can make another copy of the code without permission from the copyright holder.

Similarly, putting copy of GPLv2ed code on a work computer is not distribution, and the programmer doesn't have a copy under GPLv2.

The wording of the GPLv2 isn't terribly helpful here. It uses phrases like "copy or distribute" in some places and "distribute" in others and doesn't define either term. If nothing else it really seems open to litigation. It would be sensible to make stuff like this explicit in a license.

It would be an interesting case - no doubt an expensive one if there were deep enough pockets involved. Ultimately the law is whatever the courts say it is, and there is only one way to find out...

Comment Re:'Open source' (Score 1) 46 46

But there's another aspect of this. Say my company downloads the Linux kernel and we internally make some changes to it and use it on our servers in its modified form. Jim is one of the coders. Linux is released under GPLv2. Does that mean that Jim can take our changes home with him?


The GPLv2 kicks in only when the company redistributes the code along with the modifications, and those modifications are available to the recipients that we've specified.

This is a common argument but I'm not convinced that it is airtight. How about this:

But there's another aspect of this. Say my company buys a Windows DVD and we install it on 47 of our servers. Jim is one of the coders. Windows DVDs are not licensed for multiple installations. Does that mean that Jim can call up MS and pocket a reward?


The Windows License kicks in only when the company redistributes copies of Windows, and those copies are available to the recipients that we've specified.

The problem with this argument is that copyright applies anytime you make a copy of anything. Copyright says you can't install Linux anywhere. What lets you install it is the license. The license for Windows says you aren't allowed to copy it at all except to install it once. The license for Linux says you're only allowed to copy it if the copy is GPLv2 along with any modifications you've made, and you make the source available to any recipients. So, your modifications MUST be GPLv2 the moment they're installed with the kernel. Since they are GPLv2, you've given permission to anybody with access to them to redistribute them already, and that includes Jim.

Now, you can still tell Jim not to redistribute it and fire him if he does and blacklist him so that his kids don't have any kind of future as is fashionable in the US, and I'm not sure that a court would take issue with that. However, I'm not convinced that a court would hold up an employer's right to sue an employee for redistributing Linux kernel modifications if you could argue that a kernel was copied anywhere at all. Keep in mind that the software industry has been pushing for super-conservative interpretations of copyright such that simply loading a copy of a portion of the program into RAM to execute it is covered. Under that kind of interpretation (which is the basis of any kind of end-use licensing) you're copying the kernel the moment you open the source in an editor.

But, you do expose the general weakness with GPLv2 in that it was really designed with a world of software sold in boxes (ie the 90s). The wording really needed cleanup and licenses like GPLv3 and AGPLv3 do much of that.

egrep -n '^[a-z].*\(' $ | sort -t':' +2.0