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Comment: Re:would prefer EA, Comcast, or Haliburton myself (Score 1) 154

by v1 (#48466013) Attached to: Sony Pictures Computer Sytems Shut Down After Ransomware Hack

Companies typically run two sets of books, one for the IRS, one for stockholders. It's legal.

While I don't know if it's legal or not to show your shareholders fraudulent books, I do know it's illegal to try to pull on the tax man. Federal charge of "keeping books" refers to keeping two separate sets of accounting, one for tax purposes and the other being an accurate reflection of your earnings. Basically it's ironclad proof of "premeditated tax evasion".

In many ways, the EPA and IRS have more destructive authority than any other government agencies. So exposing a company's wrongdoings to either of them typically leads to catastrophic results. And you almost never get to cut a deal with them, they'll take you to the cleaners because they know they can.

Comment: Re:Flip Argument (Score 1) 1087

by v1 (#48456827) Attached to: Officer Not Charged In Michael Brown Shooting

it seems though it would have been a much better idea to go ahead and indict him, even if there wasn't sufficient evidence to convict. (or even if they believed he was innocent) That would have had several important effects. First, the indictment itself would have cooled people's heads a little, Second, it would have gotten a lot more media coverage of the evidence, (which we've actually not seen a lot of, because if it DID go to trial, they will need to find jurors that haven't been exposed to it before being sequestered, meaning you either can't get a jury together or you have to make it up from people that have been living under a rock, which isn't a good thing) Third, just overall it would have given people more time to cool down before the possibly inevitable "not guilty" verdict. They've had some time already, but have mostly been using that time to GET people wound up in expectation of the failure to indict. This would have let the air out of their tires I think.

I think the basic rule of thumb here is that as a thug if you go for someone's gun, (or take down someone that has a gun) you really ought to expect to get shot. (by police OR private citizen) The bigger difference there actually is probably whether or not they empty the magazine on you. Joe Citizen will typically empty their weapon, which lowers your odds of survival quite a bit.

Comment: Re:would prefer EA, Comcast, or Haliburton myself (Score 5, Insightful) 154

by v1 (#48456789) Attached to: Sony Pictures Computer Sytems Shut Down After Ransomware Hack

Seriously, what important, secret information does a film studio have, besides salary, and royalty numbers?

Embarassing "creative accounting", heavier than expected use of offshore tax shelters and chip-shuffling, two sets of books, other illegal accounting, illegal campaign contributions, those are a lot more likely than the sort of "secrets" you're thinking of. They probably stand a lot more to lose there than from theft of R&D files.

Nowadays your accounting department needs to be the most heavily defended portion of your network, and not due to direct theft. (unless you're in the business of mining bitcoins anyway)

Comment: Re:Open records isn't the issue here (Score 1) 461

by v1 (#48346715) Attached to: Washington Dancers Sue To Prevent Identity Disclosure

Less than a week after I got plates for a used vehicle I had bought, I had a postcard in the mail to warn me that my "manufacturer's warranty was expired or was about to expire" and to contact them to get it extended.

They're already vacuuming up the public records for marketing. This isn't any different. Why does it matter if its for a stripper's license or a vehicle registration license? Why should someone be able to suck up one list and not another?

The only reason this is in the news is because someone s/auto/stripper to get some headlines.

Comment: sounds like emulating natural neuron repair (Score 1) 23

by v1 (#48344887) Attached to: Researchers Direct Growth of Neurons With Silicon Nitride Microtubes

Wikipedia has a pretty thorough description of the process of neuroregneration, which it sounds like they're trying to emluate here: :

Neuroregeneration in the peripheral nervous system (PNS) occurs to a significant degree.[5] Axonal sprouts form at the proximal stump and grow until they enter the distal stump. The growth of the sprouts is governed by chemotactic factors secreted from Schwann cells (neurolemmocytes). Injury to the peripheral nervous system immediately elicits the migration of phagocytes, Schwann cells, and macrophages to the lesion site in order to clear away debris such as damaged tissue. When a nerve axon is severed, the end still attached to the cell body is labeled the proximal segment, while the other end is called the distal segment. After injury, the proximal end swells and experiences some retrograde degeneration, but once the debris is cleared, it begins to sprout axons and the presence of growth cones can be detected. The proximal axons are able to regrow as long as the cell body is intact, and they have made contact with the Schwann cells in the endoneurial channel. Human axon growth rates can reach 2 mm/day in small nerves and 5 mm/day in large nerves.[4] The distal segment, however, experiences Wallerian degeneration within hours of the injury; the axons and myelin degenerate, but the endoneurium remains. In the later stages of regeneration the remaining endoneurial tube directs axon growth back to the correct targets. During Wallerian degeneration, Schwann cells grow in ordered columns along the endoneurial tube, creating a band of Büngner (boB) that protects and preserves the endoneurial channel. Also, macrophages and Schwann cells release neurotrophic factors that enhance re-growth.

Great explanation of how patients can experience partial to total return of motor and sensory function following an injury that severs nerves.

also they have a very impressive article on neurons themselves: - great reading for anyone interested in science/biology

Comment: the problem is elsewhere (Score 5, Insightful) 389

by v1 (#48324467) Attached to: Terrorists Used False DMCA Claims To Get Personal Data of Anti-Islamic Youtuber

Google isn't the problem here, they did exactly what was expected of them. The law itself ("safe harbor") isn't really a problem either. The problem is that there's no meaningfull check and balance. It's a very one-sided thing. The law wasn't written by all parties invoved, it was written singlehadedly with one side's interests in mind.

If someone cries "rape!" and gets a man arrested, and then we find out that it was just a girl scorned that didn't like her BF had cheated on her, SHE is now up for legal charges "filing a false statement" as well as a target for a civil suit.

No such balance exists with DMCA. Anyone can file a DMCA claim, and the recipient is legally obligated to take action. They're not [i]required[/i] to take action, but if they don't, they accept legal responsibility if the DMCA filing was lawful. So it's not really "optional" for them, even though it may appear so.

Then, if the filing turns out to be iffy, inaccurate, or even deliberaly misleading, there are NO penalties or liabilities of any kind for the person that filed the fraudulent DMCA notice.

This has several effects, and only some of them are really noticed. First, the victim has no recourse. They have no legal basis to sue the filer. No law has been broken, so law enforcement has no teeth either. But it doesn't stop there. The victim's only possible relief is a civil suit against the middleman tha received the notice. (google in this case) They have a pretty good defense since they can argue (as above) that although not legally obligated, they actually WERE obligated, indirectly. Also, google has no recourse against the filer. If they have to stage a legal defense against the victim, it's on their nickel, they can't recover any of the costs from the filer because google acted "voluntarily".

The only way out of this for google is to do research before acting on the notice. This causes all sorts of problems because not promptly taking the material down forfeits their protection, and there will be a cost to this, which is unrecoverable, regardless of the outcome.

Provisions for accountability need to be added to the law. Not so much to protect the victim, but to protect the intermediary, so they can act in the victim's best interst instead of as the filer's whipping dog. Do that, and it would (A) reduce the number of false claims, (B) make people think more carefully about filing a claim, (C) give the intermediaries some teeth to go after fraudulent filings. Once that's in place, the back end of the process will only be activated when there's a much better change it's necessary and appropriate.

Looking to change the back end of this process just isn't productive. The changes need to be made in the middle.

Comment: think military (Score 1) 202

by v1 (#48233961) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Do I Make a High-Spec PC Waterproof?

I've got some old radio gear from the military, and when you're dealing with a 300w uhf transmitter that needs to go into an unpressurized area of an aircraft, you have to go down this same road, because it needs to be AIR-tight (to a large pressure differential), not just WATER-tight.

One unit I have here is a tube type amp. Tubes are NOT efficient. Their solution was to make a hermetically sealed case (complete with pressure gauge and what looks like a bicycle tube valve on the outside. A part of the inside is a heat exchanger, and a fan runs internally to circulate air around in the case. There's a 1x1 hole in the back for intake, and 1x1 hole on the bottom for exhaust. That, along with about 24 1/4" bolts and a large gasket, allows this amp to remain sealed, pressurized, and cooled at 30,000 ft. Note that while there was a fan on the inside exchanger, the unit itself had no external moving parts. The slot you dropped the radio into in the aircraft supplied the moving air into and out of those external holes for the external side of the exchanger.

The old motorola maxtraks were mostly solid-state, but used tubes for their internal PA amp. Instead of a heat exchanger, they used passive radiation for cooling. The power transistors that inverted the AC to run the tubes were bolted onto the sides, were completely covered, but were attached to a large chunk of slightly finned aluminum. It didn't radiate very efficiently, but they didn't generate a LOT of heat, and the plates had a relatively large surface area, so it was enough.

The tubes on the back were a very different story. Normally you cool tubes with air convection, or in much larger applications, with a built-in water jacket. These were placed sideways in the back, and a LARGE hunk of aluminum fitted over them. The inside of the aluminum was curved to wrap around the outer 1/2 of the tube, and be in contact with it. The outside of the aluminum had many large, durable fins. So these tubes were kept cool by passive radiation.

Those maxtraks were made to be tossed (literally) into the back of a squad car and go on high speed joyrides without damage. They were tanks, and used NO air circulation.

I doubt you can use an air exchanger like in my first example, but there it is for reference in case you can use it. You're more likely to go with the second example, and just use a sealed case with a large passive heatsink. You could also just go with the heat pipe and radiator you have for the CPU already, and move that part of it out from the middle a bit, and run the exchanger line(s) out of the main enclosure, exposing the radiator to the outside. That would be fairly easy to waterproof, but most of those exchangers are made of copper and may not fare well when exposed to water. You will also need some sort of a screen / filter to keep the fins clean. The maxtraks didn't care about that, their fins were large plated aluminum, and spaced far apart. Much more durable than a modern heat pump radiator.

You could take inspiration from any modern day solid state amplifier. Even the audio amps would be worth a look, though they don't actually deal with anywhere near as much heat dissipation. (efficiency can get pretty high at audio frequency, and VERY poor at high radio frequency, making good cooling necessary) Many designs use extruded aluminum with fins on the top and two sides. Salvage a chassis off a burned up audio or rf amplifier like this, and go from there. Waterproofing the enclosure will probably be your bigger challenge than cooling.

Operating Systems

More Eye Candy Coming To Windows 10 209

Posted by timothy
from the sincere-flattery dept.
jones_supa writes Microsoft is expected to release a new build of the Windows 10 Technical Preview in the very near future, according to their own words. The only build so far to be released to the public is 9841 but the next iteration will likely be in the 9860 class of releases. With this new build, Microsoft has polished up the animations that give the OS a more comprehensive feel. When you open a new window, it flies out on to the screen from the icon and when you minimize it, it collapses back in to the icon on the taskbar. It is a slick animation and if you have used OS X, it is similar to the one used to collapse windows back in to the dock. Bah.

BBC Takes a Stand For the Public's Right To Remember Redacted Links 113

Posted by timothy
from the keep-the-microfiche-version-around-for-comparison dept.
Martin Spamer writes with word that the BBC is to publish a continually updated list of its articles removed from Google under the controversial 'right to be forgotten' notices." The BBC will begin - in the "next few weeks" - publishing the list of removed URLs it has been notified about by Google. [Editorial policy head David] Jordan said the BBC had so far been notified of 46 links to articles that had been removed. They included a link to a blog post by Economics Editor Robert Peston. The request was believed to have been made by a person who had left a comment underneath the article. An EU spokesman later said the removal was "not a good judgement" by Google.

National Security Letter Issuance Likely Headed To Supreme Court 112

Posted by samzenpus
from the give-us-an-answer dept.
Gunkerty Jeb writes The Ninth Circuit appeals court in San Francisco took oral arguments from the Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Department of Justice yesterday over the constitutionality of National Security Letters and the gag orders associated with them. The EFF defended a lower court's ruling that NSLs are unconstitutional, while the DoJ defended a separate ruling that NSLs can be enforced. Whatever the court rules, the issue of NSLs is all but certainly headed for the Supreme Court in the not too distant future.
Data Storage

Bangladesh Considers Building World's 5th-largest Data Center In Earthquake Zone 65

Posted by samzenpus
from the whole-lot-of-shaking-going-on dept.
An anonymous reader writes with news about a government plan to build a Tier IV data center in an earthquake prone district of Bangladesh. The Bangladesh Ministry of Information is considering the establishment of a Tier 4 data centre in Kaliakair, in the Gazipur region, an ambitious build which would constitute the fifth largest data centre in the world, if completed. And if it survives – the site planned for the project is prone to earthquakes. Earthquake activity in the environs is discouraging, with one nearby earthquake seven months ago in Ranir Bazar (3.8), and no less than ten within the same tectonic zone over the last three years, the largest of which measured 4.5 on the Richter scale.

How many Unix hacks does it take to change a light bulb? Let's see, can you use a shell script for that or does it need a C program?