Comment Re:For VPNs, or for routing? (Score 3, Insightful) 213

As far as I'm concerned, a hardware router...

There is no such thing. A device that moves data from one location to another, using some policies to examine and transform it, is not just a "hardware" device. It's also software. And if it interfaces with software, then it can be compromised. Or haven't you noticed the news about D-Link routers? A lot of these routers have 2MB or less of flash, which makes it difficult to find a useful exploit, but "difficult" doesn't mean "impossible."

It's pretty unlikely that anyone will come up with a useful attack on a device that's just doing port blocking, NAT, and basic routing. At worst, somebody might DOS it or turn it into a well-connected zombie to aid in DDOSing somebody's server, but neither of those is compromising your data.

With just a little paranoia, I can imagine someone finding a way to get those routers to copy your traffic, or at least the headers, to some hostile entity. It doesn't take full knowledge of your traffic to destroy your privacy.

A router is a type of computer. It's subject to all the same concerns about trustworthiness as any debate about proprietary and free software.

Comment Re:*sigh* (Score 1) 175

Having a 911 button on a cell phone (bringing it back on topic) servers only to make people into children again, tattling to mom over trifles, instead of dealing with it as adults.

At one time, all you had to do was press the 9 for several seconds and it would automatically dial 911 for you. It didn't even matter if you had service, as long as the frequency of the phone matched a tower in range, it would connect you.

I used to get trac phones back in the late 90's and give them to people I knew without phone service just so they would have an emergency life line if ever needed. I remember some charities were asking for your old phones in order to do the same- give them to the poor without phones so they could use 911 if they ever needed to.

This panic button may already exist if the phones still do this. It might also explain how an ass can hit numbers so far apart then press send all in the correct sequence (by pressing the 9 for several seconds and the phone automatically doing the rest).

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Journal Journal: Can You Really Do Self Hypnosis?

I used to think that hypnosis was only possible between the hypnotist and the subject, but I’m reading all over the internet about this thing called self hypnosis. I don’t know if its’ true and I don’t know if it works, but I really do think it’s a lot like self-reprogramming where you are (

Comment Re:Time for some really new physics (Score 1) 150

Absolutely but I would love to be around for a time when you have the greats of science calling BS on some new theory that very quickly becomes quite obviously the correct theory; then opening up a whole new field. I suspect that this is what excites string theorists. They really really must be dreaming of the day when someone comes up with a fairly clear and easy (read cheap) experiment that solidly is in line with a string theoretical prediction where all other theories either draw a blank or ideally predict something else.

Personally I am more of a technologist so what excites me the most is that stuff should come out of a fundamental discovery. The various discoveries at the dawn of electricity almost immediately resulted in things like the telegraph, electrical motors, light bulbs, generators. Then as electromagnetic theory was fleshed out you start getting wireless transmission, and eventually vacuum tube computers. But this all sort of matured and almost stagnated until the technological spawn of quantum mechanics such as solid state electronics.

So, for instance, the theory that entanglement is wormhole related is not just really cool sounding but might result in something that ends up in a gizmo which is, to me, very cool. The key being that without the solid mathematical and then experimentally tested theory that people might never suddenly go ah ha, I know something cool I can build.

Comment Re:TRIM? who needs it! (Score 1) 133

then you balance it it (never mind the occasional data loss, we have more than enough data anyway)!
i hear balance is the ultimate solution for any btrfs problem.

ran out of free space? balance it!
bad filesystem corruption after power loss? balance it!
faulty blocks? balance it!
tree not balanced? balance it!
neighbor's dog taking a dump on your lawn? get the hell off m^W^W^W^W^W balance it!

i think you kind of get the idea

Comment Re:The realities of patents (Score 3, Informative) 185

In other respects, I was disappointed. I think the biggest downer for me was when we were formally advised that reading other patents in the field was potentially dangerous.

IMO, the way to test whether or not the patent system is accomplishing its constitutional goal is to look at how much time practitioners spend looking through the patent library to find solutions to their problems, or ideas they can build upon, with the idea that it's better/faster/cheaper to find a developed patent and license it rather than do the hard work of inventing it yourself. If the patent database is heavily used as a research library, then it has accomplished its goal of contributing to the progress of the useful arts and sciences.

Your comment is exactly what corporate attorneys have told me as well, and the fact that it's good advice proves that the system utterly and completely fails the test.

Feed Google News Sci Tech: CMU's "CHIMP" robot advances in Florida competition sponsored by US ... - Pittsb (

ABC News

CMU's "CHIMP" robot advances in Florida competition sponsored by US ...
Pittsburgh Post Gazette
Carnegie Mellon University's two-armed, two-legged CHIMP robot successfully advanced after two days of Trials in Florida in a U.S. Department of Defense-sponsored competition to encourage development of robots able to respond to disasters, officials said...
CMU's CHIMP robot reaches competition's final roundTribune-Review
Building robots to venture where man cannotCBS News
Streaming Live: Day 2 of the DARPA Robotics Challenge TrialsPC Magazine
Computerworld-Reuters-Wall Street Journal
all 150 news articles

Comment Re:They can release the info if they really want (Score 1) 37

However, telecom and tech firms are still barred from releasing data on national security requests from the FBI and U.S. intelligence services."

How about "leaking it" Snowden style via some "contractor?" Heck, if it hapned to the NSA, it can surely happen to some big corporation. No?

Fleeing the country might keep you safe from a government agency but there is nowhere in the world you can hide from a multi-national corporation.

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Comment Re:*sigh* (Score 2) 175

I will bet it is a crappy police force or the guy dresses and talks like something they don't like.

In my home town, the cops are corrupt. Not all of them, but most of the ones you will ever meet. I specifically remember the cops pulling a friend over for speeding and then ripping his dash apart claiming he had to check the serial numbers on the radio to see if it was stolen- it was a crappy stock radio. The problem that started this was when the cop went back to his car to write the citation and call the information in, my friend turned on the radio to break the silence and that seemed to piss the cop off when he came back and heard Van Halen playing. So the serial numbers supposedly was correct or not in their stolen database and we were left on the side of the road with the dash torn apart, the radio in the passenger seat, and a speeding ticket. Complaints to the chief were met with he was just doing his job.

Another time, I saw a guy get pulled over in front of my house. The cops asked if they could search the car and he said as soon as you get a warrant. Then one of the officers yelled, what is that, is there someone in your trunk, hand cuffed the guy and sat him on the curb while they proceeded to go through the entire car. I remember busting up laughing when the guy yelled something about how in the hell is anyone going to fit under the spare tire. I got the evil eye from the cop and went inside. Evidently they didn't find anything because after hearing some cussing, I saw him drive off while watching through the window.

On the other hand, I have had to deal with the state police in many different states. They always seem to be professional, as kind as you can be without ignoring the reason you are interacting with them, and direct to the point. So I know there are good cops out there, I also know there are some ass hats with John Wayne syndrome or something too. I imagine the John Wayne wannabes eventually get in trouble for something and go to desk duty which might be the guys problem with going to his local police station.

Comment Re:Gums up the narrative that IP is for everyone (Score 1) 185


Small businesses sue each other all the time. It's not that expensive to sue. It can be incredibly expensive if the parties choose to make it so, and if you sue a megacorp they'll either write you a check to make you go away, or they'll bury you in lawyers, which means you'll need your own big pile of lawyers. But when Quickie Laundromat sues Quickie Laundromat it doesn't cost very much. The parties do much of the legwork themselves to keep the attorneys' time (and bills) low, and they hire cheap lawyers.

Comment Re:Next job? (Score 1) 308

And I've seen the same stuff in non union workforces. The guy who gets an executive position because he went to school with the CEO even though he can't tie his shoes, or the guy who will never be fired because he's learned the system well enough to completely avoid any repercussions while simultaneously being useless. That crap isn't union specific it's just work.

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Comment Re:California is too large (Score 1) 489

The point of the senate is not is not to balance large population states with small population states but rather to give states themselves representation.

Regardless... if I split the state into six pieces the people in California would have a more equal voice in national government.

I don't much care if the senators want to keep their even 100 seats. Its an utterly meaningless benchmark.

Comment Re:Time for some really new physics (Score 1) 150

Tuesdays are definitely Quantum. I often forget that they aren't a Monday and sometimes think that it is Wednesday but then am happy to find out that it is still Tuesday. So Tuesday must be a superstate of Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday that collapses with the highest probability as being Tuesday.

Comment Re:i'm all for it... (Score 2) 112

Basic Cruise Control from the 60s and 70's could handle that situation. The problem is there are too many people who won't use cruise control

So true.

I have basic, stupid cruise control on my car and it rarely varies more than 5mph (+/- 2.5mph) on a grade when set at 65. But it seems like any time I drive for more than 30 minutes on an uncongested freeway it is inevitable that I'll run into at least one numbnut who isn't using cruise control and lets their speed vary by 10-15mph. They'll catch up to me, sit in my blind-spot until I put on the brakes and force them to pass. Once they are well ahead, I turn the cruise-control back on at my original speed and then I catch up to them, at which point they speed-match me again. If I gun it and get past them, as soon as I settle back at the set speed they start to catch up again. I can not figure out what the fuck is going through their heads, but it is super aggravating and it happens all the fucking time. Vast open stretches of freeway and these guys must be lonely because they won't leave me the fuck alone.


Obamacare and Middle-Wheel-Wheelbarrows 199

davecb writes "The Obamacare sign-up site was a classic example of managers saying 'not invented here' and doing everything wrong, as described in Poul-Henning Kamp's Center Wheel for Success, at ACM Queue." It's not just a knock on the health-care finance site, though: "We are quick to dismiss these types of failures as politicians asking for the wrong systems and incompetent and/or greedy companies being happy to oblige. While that may be part of the explanation, it is hardly sufficient. ... [New technologies] allow us to make much bigger projects, but the actual success/failure rate seems to be pretty much the same."

Comment Re:Time for some really new physics (Score 1) 150

I am sad to see that you got voted down; as your advice is solid. Over the years I have slowly been putting the math into my head to be able to finish "The Road to Reality"

My simple dream is that with my extensive computer programming knowledge I might be able to put that together with what I learn to generate something genuinely new.

Comment Re:Legality vs Enforceability (Score 1) 183

Without the terrorists, there's nothing to keep the American half bear half pig half human military and police scum in check. The terrorists are their only natural predators...

Now the United States are overrun by these half bear half pig half human scum, the real terrorists of the world.

Look at what they've done:

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Comment Re:NSA Key (Score 1) 464

Remember the Windows "NSA Key" flip a few years ago. You think Microsoft DIDN'T add a key for the NSA now?

I suspect that, if Microsoft had covertly added a key to Windows on behalf of the NSA - or any other government agency, for that matter - it would not have been labelled as _NSAKEY. Suffice to say, if the NSA had subverted the security of Windows (which no longer seems entirely unreasonable), they would have done so in a rather more subtle manner.

The Wikipedia article provides more information on the issue.

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Comment Re:California is too large (Score 1) 489

The water rights are granted on a city by city basis so they shouldn't be disrupted.

The LA DWP for example funded much o the Hoover dam project and as a result the city has claims on the water from the dam.

Splitting the state won't disrupt the flow of water. It will disrupt the flow of tax money though.

Comment Re:Digg reader updates due to device crashes (Score 1) 141

Pardon me for not having a peer-approved double blind. "Even though Android is based on Linux, it feels more like a smartphone version of Windows Vista. Always crashing and freezing." I am hardly the only person saying this.

Comment Euro cruise control (Score 1) 112

I mostly drive American cars but have noticed that Euro cruise control has long been quite smooth. In my second last American car the cruise control was so twitchy that my wife would regularly ask what the hell I was doing. My last American car was still jerky. Typically the event that concerned her was the stupid car not gassing it enough on a hill climb and then stomping on the gas and dropping a gear to compensate for the great loss of speed. My other complaint was that for some stupid reason the cruise control would still leave a little gas on during the decent resulting in the car going way too fast. I see the RPMs still up a bit and then would turn the cruise off and see a 50% drop in the power. Lucky to not get a speeding ticket with that gem of a feature.

So while it is good ford is making it sound like they are leaping into the future, step one should be catching up with 12 year old Euro technology.

Comment Re:Allow me to burn som Karma by saying (Score 2) 489

When aren't the Italians talking about revolution? The south of Europe isn't having problems because of the European Union, they're having economic issues for the same reason most of the US is; the New York banksters.

Most of Europe has abandoned local currencies for the Euro, which is pretty much an irreversible process. Many of their economies could not have survived the last decade if their currencies had still been susceptible to the predation of currency speculators like George Soros and the slime at Bank of America and CitiCorp. Think Portugal and Spain have problems now? Imagine what it would have been like if this were two decades ago, when Soros took advantage of a weak British position to crash the British pound and destroy the country's economy. The Euro is probably the only thing that saved most of the weaker European countries from further economic attack and total collapse, and their leaders are quite aware of that.

Comment Re:keep the original in good working order (Score 2) 106

Knowing someone who made good health choices, but had congestive heart failure anyway, and is now alive due to an LVAD (Left Ventricular Assist Device), I'd say that you don't have any clue about the real world. Yes, some folks drink or smoke themselves sick, but guess what ? Parts fail. We'll just leave you by the side of the ER when yours do...

Comment Re:How is it their fault? (Score 1) 653

They practically roll up the sidewalks in SF at 9PM. If you want late night food, you have to go to some place in the Castro, a club that serves food (assuming they let you in), a bar (kitchen usually closes at 10), or go to the waffle house, Denny's, Mel's, or one of a couple (mostly take-out) pizza places.

If you are doing dinner and a movie, you pretty much have to do the dinner first, or nothing will be open after the movie lets out.

Bring your company and your employees to Las Vegas. Housing is cheap, traffic is light, there's no state income tax, and you'll never want for food, drink, or nightlife no matter what time it is.

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