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Comment Re:Will this work in the ticket in ticket out syst (Score 1) 79

it's really just causing the barcode reader to do what it was built for, the problem is the software is trusting uncontrolled user input (the barcode) without sanitizing it first, and also most of these units are set up with the barcode reader connected as a keyboard with access to do things it should not be allowed to do (i.e. if you unplug the scaner and hook a keyboard up you can do the same "BAD STUFF"

Comment Re:No freedom of assembly (Score 2) 618

What the hell is gamergate and why is it relevant?

Pro-gamergate people will say that gamergate is a defense of video gamers and a campaign for professional ethics among video game journalists and the developers they cover. Anti-gamergate people will say that gamergate is a misogynistic harassment campaign that arose in response to the introduction of social justice themes among indie game developers.

The truth is neither of those things. Instead, gamergate is a cultural genocide. Journalists and developers sit in one bubble (talking up the atrocities of the other side among themselves while occasionally hacking/harrasing/doxing the other side) while players sit in their own bubble doing exactly the same sort of thing. It's a flame-fest of epic proportions and extreme duration.

The truth does include bits of what both side claim. The pro-GG side has attracted true misogynists to its ranks (and would speak misogynistically anyways, just for the lulz). And the anti-GG side has effected censorship thru their control over the media (which gives the Wikipedia article an unfortunate bias). And that's just scratching the surface.

Like any genocide, there's scorched earth, long memories, little forgiveness, and no willingness to admit to one's on culpabilities. Unlike real genocide, there's no U.N. demilitarized zone to wall the two parties off from each other so that they can each focus with getting on with their lives and contributing something meaningful to society. Hopefully it will peter out someday in the distant future. My advice: either ignore it or build a game that transcends the debate and blows everybody's socks off.

Comment Re:+1 for privacy supporters -1 for gun control (Score 1) 620

Thus, when laws said "firing a gun within a city limit is illegal," it does not always mean it is illegal in all cases because there could be other factors that are higher priority than firing a gun. One needs to consider the totality of the circumstance as well.

I think, in general, you'll find the legal system much less willing to do this then you idealize. For instance, Alabama prosecutors use an anti-abortion law to prosecute new moms for taking a Valium during pregnancy. All the time, the letter of the law is used to prosecution people beyond the intended scope and spirit of the original bill. Juries are instructed to blindly apply it, machine-like, without taking the "totality of circumstances" and reasonable common sense into account.

Regardless of how you think the law should work (and what rights people should or should not have against intruding drones), this guy would have been screwed in 99.9% of courtrooms because of the statute. (Unless there was some state-level preemption kicking in here... I'd love to read thru the case if I had time to see if there's any chance this won't be overturned in a future case.)

My point is, you might think it reasonable to shirk the law in this or that circumstance. However, prosecutors and judges have the ability to strip away reasonableness.

Comment Re:+1 for privacy supporters -1 for gun control (Score 1) 620

Or is it -1 for property rights? If the neighbor's kid kicks his ball into my yard, do I have a right to destroy it in front of him? My property (and privacy) are valuable to me, but it doesn't give me the right to exert a disproportionate response against other people's property (an intruding ball or drone).

Comment Re:"Open == Secure"? (Score 1) 214

A given piece of software either has or has not been audited. It doesn't matter if it's closed or open, it matters if it's been audited by someone who is technically proficient enough.

Close... you have to trust not only the auditor's technical proficiency, but also their intentions. With open source, you have the option--no, the power--of getting a second opinion. From someone you select and fund, instead of whomever the original vendor hired.

Closed source, commercial software is written by people who are paid to do it.

So is open source, in a surprising number of cases.

Comment Re:Go BIG, Dell, or go home to mama (Score 3, Insightful) 77

Both the XPS 13 Developer Edition and the Precision M3800 come with Linux, though it takes some searching to find ( seems the best starting point). IIRC, you actually pay ~$70-80 less for selecting Linux.

By contrast, I wasn't able to find any similar offerings from Lenovo, Asus, HP, etc. Say what you want about Dell, but they seem to be the only big name competing for Linux in the laptop space. (There are several small players/re-branders of course, but their products are very generic since they don't have the engineering expertise.)

Comment Re:They should have been shot (Score 1) 328

There's no reason to kill them. There is plenty of reason to stop them.

Enjoy jail, and maybe a lawsuit from the family. The law only permits you to use deadly force when defending yourself (or others) from imminent death or grievous bodily harm. Even then, you better have been unable to satisfy any applicable duty to retreat, have eyewitnesses on your side, and hope the cops who show up feel instinctively friendly to you.

Don't be this idiot.

Comment Wow (Score 3) 318

Normally I just ignore all the Mozilla-haters because they're whining about stupid stuff (like Chrome-style versioning) or minor mis-steps (like Pocket) or things I find totally awesome (like Awesome Bar).

But if they go where I think they're going--banning ad-blockers--then I'm going to have to seriously re-evaluate my trust in this organization. Sorry Denelle: I'm not "content neutral". I want to maximize signal and minimize noise, especially in this overloaded information age, even if it's "just" the psychological noise of ads trying to manipulate me. I'm freaking tired of everyone thinking they can deceive me, play on my fears and doubts, tinker with my self image, and re-frame my perceptions to match their agenda... and advertisers are the worst of the lot.

Comment Re:Another stupid idea (Score 2) 327

Yeah, it reminds me somewhat of Chiat/Day's attempt to create an office-less workplace.

However, sometimes you have to iterate thru a lot of stupid ideas to find the truly brilliant ones. And you can learn stuff in failure that's useful down the road. So good on Zappos for trying, even though I don't think it will pan out so well.

Honesty is for the most part less profitable than dishonesty. -- Plato