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Comment: Re:Legitimate concerns (Score 1) 197

by WaffleMonster (#47579595) Attached to: UK Government Report Recommends Ending Online Anonymity

Pro-anonymity advocates have been saying for years that Freedom of Expression will fix all ills but we've seen a substantial rise of bullying, hate speech and terrorism-advocacy in the past decade. Saying that people will find the truth so long as it's out there, somewhere, does not seem to be working. Great in theory but doesn't work in practice.

Spoken like a true information war looser. It isn't working people are not being nice, they soak up conspiracy theories, don't listen to us or come to our conclusions... also everyone is turning into terrorists.. be afraid..... We can't beat them in the market place of ideas so we'll just shut their asses down.

Saying that people will find the truth so long as it's out there, somewhere, does not seem to be working.

What do we call states which leverage their monopoly on violence to control public opinion or otherwise help them to "find the truth"?

Comment: Re:The bashing is sometimes justified... (Score 1) 102

by slew (#47579557) Attached to: Countries Don't Own Their Internet Domains, ICANN Says

if we can't trust society to act fairly under full disclosure, then selective disclosure is the only alternative to protect the disadvantaged.

Who exactly is disadvantaged? The person that may or may not act for their own personal self interest w/o full disclosure about another person or the person that conceals some information about themselves to prevent other people from acting in their own personal self interests?

Of course the 64-thousand dollar question is who exactly has the right to decide what information is personal enough to withhold? Certainly not the person (because they would withhold all negative information about themselves). Some faceless entity? We can see how that works out on things like internet dating sites (I'm thinking about the recent OkCupid fiasco)...

We can throw out examples ad-nauseum. What about hiring a caregiver for a child that unbeknownst to you is a binge drinker and tends to break speed limits? Is being a binge drinker or a speeder a matter of privacy (it probably isn't a legal issue)? What if the child was your kid and you needed your caregiver for transport between school and home? Maybe that person shouldn't be a caregiver anyhow? How about those folks that have AIDS and are deliberately reckless about spreading it around? How about that privacy in that case?

You can always find specific examples for both side of this argument, but what is the principles to decide? It's arbitrary and capricious to anyone stuck on the wrong side of the line, but clearly the only "pure" strategy is full disclosure, and exceptions should only be made to that on a case-by-case basis (if at all).

Take the first person that filed the lawsuit in Spain against Google linking to an article about being evicted from his home. I'm sure a future landlord of his might have found this relevant information even though he found it embarrassing... It's only the fact of some arbitrary determination that this information was no longer relevant to any future landlords that it was required to be removed. That's a real scalable principle... NOT!

Comment: Re:VMS is dead; long live WNT (Score 1) 92

by hey! (#47579519) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port

Implementation makes a difference. Early versions of NT were quite good, but unpopular because you needed 16MB of RAM (if I recall correctly) to run them in an era when a high end personal computer shipped with 4MB of RAM. Over the years they tried to hold the line, at one point getting the minimum down to 12MB of RAM, but perhaps not coincidentally stability got really bad.

Comment: Re:von Braun didn't take his place (Score 1) 69

by hey! (#47579467) Attached to: Was America's Top Rocketeer a Communist Spy? The FBI Thought So

Yes, he designed stuff for our enemy, but if I had lived in the civil war times I might have built something like the CSS submarine Hunley.

With slave labor, no less.

Yes people are limited by their culture and time, but not *that* limited. Braun deserves condemnation for using slave labor in WW2.

+ - Was America's #1 Rocketeer a Communist Spy? The FBI thought so.

Submitted by IMissAlexChilton
IMissAlexChilton (3748631) writes "Frank Malina masterfully led the World War II effort to build U.S. rockets for jet-assisted takeoff and guided missiles. As described in IEEE Spectrum, Malina’s motley crew of engineers and enthusiasts (including occultist Jack Parsons) founded the Jet Propulsion Lab and made critical breakthroughs in solid fuels, hypergolics, and high-altitude sounding rockets, laying the groundwork for NASA’s future successes. And yet, under suspicion by the Feds at the war’s end, Malina gave up his research career, and his team’s efforts sank into obscurity. Taking his place: the former Nazi Wernher von Braun. Read “Frank Malina: America’s Forgotten Rocketeer”. Includes cool vintage footage of early JPL rocket tests. Disclosure: I am a staff editor with IEEE Spectrum."

Comment: Re:The old timers were right (Score 3, Insightful) 93

by rahvin112 (#47578323) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port

I'm sure there are hundreds if not thousands of systems out there running on it because the application it runs is essential, runs perfectly fine and would cost billions to replace.

Sometimes it's not smart to replace something just because you can or it's outdated. If it serves it's purpose, the code is essentially error free because it's been in use so long and the systems work fine there is little need to replace them. I'd argue it's better at that point to keep the original software and build new ways to access it through external applications than it is to recreate the server application.

Comment: Re:assholes everywhere (Score 1) 159

In Central Beijing (a very large city), most people live in large apartment buildings which have central heating. Although historically coal was used for these central boilers, most have been transitioned to coal gas. In smaller buildings, coal burning ovens have been transitioned to electric heat (where the coal is merely burned somewhere else)...

However, the biggest change is that has been made recently was to require new homes to be metered. Historically, residents simply paid heating bills relative to the size of their apartments (~20rmb/m^2) which gave little incentive for any efficiency (power company losses were generally subsidized by the government), but with metering and improved insulation upgrades, coupled with the natural gas and electric conversions, things in Beijing are looking up...

In the suburbs and surrounding cities... well, let's just say air pollution is usually not a local thing and the average pollution level hasn't seemed to have changed too much...

On the other hand, you can't really dismiss the whole idea of centralization being a potential solution to part of this problem. The infrastructure in China (esp Beijing) is quite centralized and the Chinese are generally quite good at getting things done when they have an incentive to do so...

Comment: LOL Itanium (Score 1) 93

by Just Some Guy (#47577925) Attached to: HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port

I'm sure someone's crunched the numbers and this makes sense on paper, but seriously? Porting to Itanium before x86? I know HP wants to prop up its teensy niche CPU server line, but I just can't see how to justify that. Who's going to migrate software from old VMS systems to a new one on very highly vendor-locked hardware? It seems like anything likely to ever be updated before the heat death of the universe would probably have made the jump to Linux-on-x86 years ago.

Comment: Re:It would be cheaper for everyone.... (Score 1) 159

It is incredibly simple and relatively cheap given the costs the pollution imposes. China's mix of pollution sources is little different than the rest of the world.

Non point sources are about 40% of the emissions mix and composed mostly of vehicle emissions in the summer with some heating emissions from wood and coal in the winter. The cars they are buying for the most part have the same systems in them as they do in the US, the problem is the fuel used is incredibly dirty. This could be fixed in less than a year by requiring the same fuel standards as western countries use. The non-point winter emissions can be addressed through a combination of regulations on wood/coal burning appliances and providing better sources such as natural gas and electric heating.

The remaining 60% of emissions are all point source and can be addressed through regulation of smoke stack emissions. Almost everything seriously harmful can be scrubbed at the stack. Some emissions like nitric and sulfuric acids are harder to scrub but we have the technology today to remove the majority. The worst of the worst, PM 2.5 and other particulates are trivial to scrub, this technology has been around since the 70's. The Chinese government could mandate the installation of these systems and finance the retrofits, not only could it be done relatively quickly they could cause a massive boom in internal industries to handle this.

This isn't hard. The US, Europe and Japan have done this exact thing already. In the 60's the US had air as bad as China have now, it's what triggered our entire environmental movement, the laws and all the technology to clean it up. This is easy precisely because all the research on how to fix it has already been done and all the systems are already developed and tested. The Chinese would just need to copy the regulations and requirements the US/Europe/Japan put on their industry. It's just a matter of money, and they have plenty of money to fix this AND an authoritarian government to force it's implementation.

It's beyond silly to say this is hard. It couldn't be easier.

+ - The CIA Does Las Vegas->

Submitted by Nicola Hahn
Nicola Hahn (1482985) writes "Despite the long line of covert operations that Ed Snowden’s documents have exposed public outcry hasn’t come anywhere near the level of social unrest that characterized the 1960s. Journalists like Conor Friedersdorf have suggested that one explanation for this is that the public is “informed by a press that treats officials who get caught lying and misleading (e.g., James Clapper and Keith Alexander) as if they're credible.”

Certainly there are a number of well-known popular venues which offer a stage for spies to broadcast their messages from while simultaneously claiming to “cultivate conversations among all members of the security community, both public and private.” This year, for instance, Black Hat USA will host Dan Greer (the CISO of In-Q-Tel) as a keynote speaker.

But after all of the lies and subterfuge is it even constructive to give voice to the talking points of intelligence officials? Or are they just muddying the water? As one observer put it, “high-profile members of the intelligence community like Cofer Black, Shawn Henry, Keith Alexander, and Dan Greer are positioned front and center in keynote slots, as if they were glamorous Hollywood celebrities. While those who value their civil liberties might opine that they should more aptly be treated like pariahs”"

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