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Comment: Re:Reminds me of The Wonderful Burt Wonderstone (Score 1) 90

by vakuona (#47433089) Attached to: The Billionaire Mathematician

Oh yes, Europeans just went to Africa to build pyramids without ever thinking to build any where they came from because, you know, that's just how they rolled. Where in the world has that ever happened?

One of the mummified individuals is found who "may" belong to some ancestral group proves what exactly?

What about the other mummified individuals? What about the carving and elaborate caskets and tombs that show people with distinctly African features? Or is anything that doesn't fit your crackpot theory discarded for being too inconvenient?

Comment: Re:Reminds me of The Wonderful Burt Wonderstone (Score 2) 90

by vakuona (#47420489) Attached to: The Billionaire Mathematician

Let's face it, most people who die of thirst/famine are black and have never in 100,000's years done anything to build a technology to help them to survive. It is not my problem that they are too stupid to figure out how to obtain a continuous and adequate supply of clean water!

Besides the obviously racist connotation, you are seriously misinformed.

They didn't "figure" it out because they didn't have to. They survived millions of years because they developed appropriate technology for their needs. They lived in a much more forgiving climate (except for tropical diseases) which didn't necessitate their developing all these fancy gizmos. Unfortunately, much of Africa is water stressed in ways that many parts of Europe just aren't, and no amount of engineering available until a few decades ago could help you there.

These black people built aqueducts and pyramids in Egypt, and built rather impressive cities all over Africa. Well before anyone else was building anything remotely comparable. So, they (we) are not as useless as you imagine.

Comment: Re:Truecrypt was the hardest thing for the NSA (Score 1) 566

by vakuona (#47140911) Attached to: TrueCrypt Website Says To Switch To BitLocker

To be able to determine that someone has a hidden volume, you would have to be able to look at the volume twice - the first time after you first suspect that there is a hidden volume, and the second after someone has changed something in the hidden volume.

There are a few ways this "threat" could be countered in my opinion.

1. Always "overwrite" the free space with random garbage when you use the volume. This gives plausible deniability. if the free space has changed a lot, then it could be because you have written to the hidden volume, or because the programme has just overwritten some portion of the free space like it always does.

2. Assuming the program doesn't allow (1), don't make any changes to the hidden volume once your encrypted disk has been inspected once. Basically, if the only thing that could give you away is making further changes to the hidden volume, then don't make the changes. You will still have access to your files, but won't be able to change the volume.

Comment: Re:RMS is right. (Score 1) 406

by vakuona (#47048859) Attached to: Did Mozilla Have No Choice But To Add DRM To Firefox?

Why does everything have to be universal or bad?

Is there anything stopping Haiku or Amiga offering to pay for the implementation of the DRM on their systems. Companies will support any platform that can add to their bottom line. If Haiku users want support, they can just pay for it. Or download Linux which is equally if not more free, and comes supported.

Just because things are done in software doesn't mean the choice should be works everywhere or not at all.

Comment: Re:Just like Bulldozer? (Score 1) 345

by vakuona (#47021423) Attached to: AMD Preparing To Give Intel a Run For Its Money

I would also add that unless AMD plans to have a business where it can migrate cheaper chip business to use the older fabs, AMD might well find itself having to manage fabs i.e. run a foundries business to recoup its investment. AMD doesn't really make the cheap as chips chips (the kind of stuff that Broadcom makes), then they should not be in the business of fabs. They ought to let the likes of TSMC who can manage that migration much better than AMD be in that business.

Comment: Ye of little imagination! (Score 1) 165

by vakuona (#46957789) Attached to: BMW Unveils the Solar Charging Carport of the Future

This is a concept. Concepts can be improved!

As long as your commute doesn't run your battery down completely, and as long as you charge tend to recharge more than you discharge through use, a car port like this will keep you topped up.

This could also be hooked up to your mains to supply most of your own electricity.

Maybe, if car makers came together and created standard battery sizes, capacities and forms, you could build in battery swap station to allow your battery to be recharged when you are not at home, and allow your EV to always be swapped onto the battery with the most charge.

Comment: Re:That's easy (Score 1) 482

by vakuona (#46892637) Attached to: Really, Why Are Smartphones Still Tied To Contracts?

I don't know about the USA, but the last time I was looking to buy a phone, my phone company was willing to give me an interest free loan for 2 years, and give me a cheaper plan than I would have gotten had I kept my old phone. It did surprise me a little, but I reckon they get to make a profit on the upfront sale, so they are happy to sell a phone to me at cost, and they probably can borrow very cheaply, so they weren't even bothered to charge interest on the upfront loan.

So it is not always as clear cut, but then again, I live in the UK where there is actual competition between the phone networks (Vodafone, O2, Orange/T-Mobile and Three).

What is clear is that it is not always the no-brainer that the article makes it out to be.

Comment: Re: Not a surprise (Score 3, Insightful) 303

by vakuona (#46881763) Attached to: SEC Chair On HFT: 'The Markets Are Not Rigged'

This isn't predicting the markets. This is gaming them. If I know that a big pension fund want to buy Apple stock, having gleaned this information from unfulfilled orders on some exchanges, I can go out and quickly buy some Apple stock, and then almost immediately sell it to the fund. Why should we allow HFTers to have information before the rest of us. They should wait in line like everyone else. Why can't orders be queued so that the last to place and order is the last to have it filled. And why can't we impose a delay (even a random one) to ensure that one cannot jump ahead of the queue by going to other markets to find the same shares when they find out that someone else is looking for shares.

Comment: Re:Probably saved more lives with jamming (Score 1) 427

Yeah, because breaking the law in and of itself is never justifiable, right? As far as lives go, you'd have to offset the number of denied 911 calls that would've saved someone against the number of accidents he prevented by denying cellnet access to all those childadult accidents-waiting-to-happen. Really, it goes either way, and I'll bet the difference he made either way was negligible.

As far as critical infrastructure goes, it should be hardwired, with RF as an emergency fallback. It seems everyone, including emergency responders, politicians, and, apparently, even some technophiles here, need to realize these things are radios first, computers second, and phones/cameras/whatever a distant last. If it's important, hardwire it. If it's important and sensitive, hardwire and crypt it. If you cant hardwire it, then plan the necessary contingencies for when service is denied. Radio is not a guaranteed service. Deal with it. Frankly, the fact that so much already depends on the shitty, overpriced cell nets concerns me more than some guy with too much time on his hands. The fact he was able to do it should be a wake up call, but of course it won't. It'll just result in harsher penalties from lawyer-politicians who think the law defines reality. Meanwhile, the technologies deployed won't change one iota.

The fact that a service cannot be guaranteed does not give someone the right to sabotage it. Everything we depend on in society depends in part on society agreeing that we behave in certain ways, including not sabotaging services that we depend on as society. This is why we don't allow people to pollute rivers unnecessarily, we don't allow people to fly their aircraft without agreeing to obey the instructions of air traffic control etc.

There was a time when hard-line services would not have been considered essential - when just two people had telephones for example, and quite possibly for a long time after that. That changes when people began to depend on them, and one could argue that people now depend on wireless services in the same way.

Hardwires can also be cut (see recent tornadoes) and wireless service may be a lot easier an quicker to restore in emergency situations.

70% (and now possibly more) of emergency calls are now done using wireless devices, so the argument that we should not depend on them is incredibly silly and shortsighted at best.

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