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RMS to Move Into Bill Gates Building Today 645

In anonymous reader writes "RMS will be moving his office to the new William H. Gates building at MIT's Stata Center starting today. This marks the end of MIT's use of building NE43, which housed the LCS and AI labs (now combined into CSAIL). On a strangely unrelated note, shortly after Harvard, in a laudable attempt to retain solidarity with the Open Source community, dedicated the Maxwell Dworkin building (named after Gates' and Ballmer's mothers respectively), Gates' credit card was hacked. After all, they did have his mother's maiden name... "
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RMS to Move Into Bill Gates Building Today

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  • irony (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    ah the irony is just to delicous
  • by Anonymous Coward
    There's MIT, Stanford... anywhere else that Billy has seen fit to leave his mark?
  • by potcrackpot ( 245556 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:26PM (#8634992) Homepage
    ... is the 'w' in 'Dworkin' silent?
  • Use punctuation (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:26PM (#8634996)
    Harvard, in a laudable attempt to retain solidarity with the Open Source community, dedicated the Maxwell Dworkin building (named after Gates' and Ballmer's mothers respectively)

    How does this attempt to retain solidarity with the OSS community? The entire post is one gigantic run-on sentence, so maybe I am not reading it correctly?

  • how stupid (Score:3, Insightful)

    by AnonymousCowheart ( 646429 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:27PM (#8635009) Homepage
    How stupid can you be? In the article, it says he stole the credit card numbers to prove how insecure things were. If that wasn't enough, he emailed the info to NBCi. Why do these people think that they're the "good guys" when they do this?
    • Re:how stupid (Score:5, Insightful)

      by theLOUDroom ( 556455 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:44PM (#8635206)
      How stupid can you be? In the article, it says he stole the credit card numbers to prove how insecure things were. If that wasn't enough, he emailed the info to NBCi. Why do these people think that they're the "good guys" when they do this?

      He is right though. The credit card system is ridiculously insecure, and we all pay for it in one way or another.

      There's no reason someone I buy $20 worth of pizza from should have all the information necessary to charge an arbitrary amount of money to my credit card for the next few years.

      The technology exists for us to all have keyring-sized computers which employ public-private key crypto. This would mean I would authorize a one-time trasfer of $20 to the pizza place, and in order for them to be able to charge me again, I would need to give them a totally new transaction key.

      Why isn't the credit card system being replaced? Who knows.....but it's silly and stupid.

      I should never have to give anyone my bank account or credit card number. These days, it should all be handled using transaction keys with authorize a specfic amount, in a certain direction, to a specfic account, on a certain date.

      I'm not defending this guy, I just think the current credit card system it totally stupid from a security point of view.
    • Re:how stupid (Score:4, Insightful)

      by broeman ( 638571 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:51PM (#8635290) Journal
      I remember back in the late 80's and early 90's here in Denmark (some European country :P) where crackers were plenty (today there is only scriptkiddies left, thank you MS).

      Many of those got to prison for one or two years, and afterwards got a nicely paid job at a large computer security company, if they didn't start it themselves. I remember the medias always telling this, and actually indirectly encouraging more people to do cracking (or spawning even more scriptkiddies), just to prove security holes. Pretty much ironic, but these people are probably the best for this kind of job.

      Cultures like 2600, CCC, cDc are not only experimenting chaos-theories, but also contributing to more secure computing. Testing is the only way to find security lacks.
    • Re:how stupid (Score:3, Interesting)

      by bangular ( 736791 )
      I've dealt with this kind of thing before.

      This is usually how the situtation goes. Grey hat hacker bored/is curious. Picks a target and goes to town. Finds security vulneribilities and emails them to whatever contact info is available. 9 times out of 10, no response. Other contact attempts usually follow and those in charge either don't understand, don't care, understaffed, or contact info out of date. The problem goes unfixed an the hacker moves on.

      This cycle goes on and turns the grey hat more and mor
  • by BurKaZoiD ( 611246 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:27PM (#8635010)
    Gray says he is actually the good guy. He said "I just wanted to prove how insecure these sites are. I have done the honest thing, but I have been ignored."

    That's like shooting someone just to prove how unsafe firearms are.

    *shakes head*
    • by gormanly ( 134067 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:52PM (#8635296)

      4, Insightful? FFS. Using the CC numbers to buy yourself a small country might be vaguely similar, but if you think it's equivalent you're showing very little regard for the value of a human life.

      Picking up a gun you saw/found on a fairground ride and waiving it around shouting "Look, gun!" would be a closer firearms analogy...

    • by LoudMusic ( 199347 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:58PM (#8635377)
      Gray says he is actually the good guy. He said "I just wanted to prove how insecure these sites are. I have done the honest thing, but I have been ignored."

      That's like shooting someone just to prove how unsafe firearms are.


      I disagree. Hacking is one thing, and I believe his statement is correct. However, using the information he obtained for illegal acts is just stupid. If he can hack a credit company he needs to apply for a job.
  • What did they order with it? And did Bill notice 100 being spent out of his 1,000,000,000,000,000.... bank account?

    My Auction:Pan Tilt Ethernet Webcam, UK! [ebay.co.uk]
  • by Ed Avis ( 5917 ) <ed@membled.com> on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:29PM (#8635035) Homepage
    Typical - you fund a shiny new building but no sooner is it in use than some bearded hippy moves in and lowers the property values.

    Hoarders may pay to fund new buildings,
    that is true, hackers, that is true.
    But they cannot choose their neighbours.
    That's not good, hackers, that's not good.
  • No way... so by buying Microsoftware, we supported the FSF?
    • I've never had the fortune of meeting Mr. Stallman, but I'm asuming he has some sense of humor. I'm a still very new to the GNU/Linux scene, but I can appreciate the guy's work.

      I say we find out what his official title is and print him up some business cards with the building name in extra bold print. It'll either give him a chuckle every time he hands one out or make his head explode.

      This is an all around good deal I think. Mr. Gates gets to do good as he sees it and get some PR and RMS gets a nice place
  • by downix ( 84795 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:30PM (#8635047) Homepage
    I think the term about those kids that felt that they were doing the "right thing" that is most apt is "shoot the messenger." Some young kids uncover security holes that could lead into millions of fraud if not patched, and then tell the authorities, let's arrest the kids. Makes it less likely that some good samaritin will do the same in the future, leaving security holes open for those less ethical to actually steal the money!

    What's next, arresting the kid that stuck his finger into the dike?
    • by Maestro4k ( 707634 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:38PM (#8635137) Journal
      • I think the term about those kids that felt that they were doing the "right thing" that is most apt is "shoot the messenger." Some young kids uncover security holes that could lead into millions of fraud if not patched, and then tell the authorities, let's arrest the kids. Makes it less likely that some good samaritin will do the same in the future, leaving security holes open for those less ethical to actually steal the money!
      This is a bit different than just finding security holes and reporting them. They actually gained access to the credit card numbers and (persumably) account information for many accounts. They didn't just find and report the holes, they exploited them, THEN reported them. This would be akin to you noticing your neighbor left the keys in his car and you decided to take it for a ride before telling him about it.
  • ...make me think "Maximus Dorkus", which makes me think of Pilate's fwiends' names in "Life of Brian".
  • Harvard solidiarity? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by 0x0d0a ( 568518 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:31PM (#8635051) Journal
    Harvard, in a laudable attempt to retain solidarity with the Open Source community, dedicated the Maxwell Dworkin building (named after Gates' and Ballmer's mothers respectively)

    I'm sure I'm just missing something here, but how does naming a building after the mothers of the cofounders of Microsoft build solidiarity with the OSS community in the least?
  • by Anonym1ty ( 534715 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:36PM (#8635107) Homepage Journal

    Why does this just cause a picture in my mind of someone's long lost childhood friend showing up at your door after being kicked out by his wife and broke with no job?

    I know that isn't what it's all about, but that was the the first picture that popped into my head.

  • by handy_vandal ( 606174 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:41PM (#8635159) Homepage Journal
    Gates' credit card was hacked ...

    The hack -- by Curador -- took place in 2000.

    See: PBS Interview with Curador [google.com].

    -kgj
  • by MCZapf ( 218870 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:43PM (#8635188)
    I just can't imagine Bill Gates having a credit card. It seems so... ordinary. I always imagined that billionaires had payment methods beyond mere credit cards - like an assistant with a suitcase full of diamonds or something.
  • by GillBates0 ( 664202 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:43PM (#8635191) Homepage Journal
    I posted [slashdot.org] a link to gnu.org in one of last week's stories...but it was down - for atleast 2-3 days. A reply [slashdot.org] to my comment explained that it was because gnu.org is down because the MIT CSAIL (Comp Sci and AI Lab), was moving to The Stata Center.

    Apparently, lots of machines (including gnu.org and debian mirrors) were being moved, which caused a significant outage.

    Pretty ironic about RMS moving to William H Gates building :(

  • by tgd ( 2822 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:44PM (#8635204)
    I have a window cube looking out in the direction of the building, and it never ceases to amaze me how ungodly ugly the building is.

    And the worst part is my only other option is to look at my computer and do work, using this ungodly awful Windows system.

    Unless I go fooz, I can't get away from looking at Gates' handiwork. Ugh
    • Inside looks better (Score:3, Interesting)

      by cpeikert ( 9457 )
      Everyone likes to bash how ugly Stata is on the outside. I like the way it looks, but I can see how others might not.

      But, you really should walk through the "Student Street" area before making up your mind. It's pretty breathtaking: a big, open hallway with various corners of other buildings (made of brick, reflective aluminum, glass) sticking through the ceiling at odd angles. Walls painted with several strong, basic hues. Classrooms with cool polka-dotted echo-proof wood panels all over the walls (th
  • Funny Story (Score:5, Funny)

    by Princess Die ( 669805 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:45PM (#8635217)
    I work at Harvard and was talking to one of the deans about the Maxwell Dworkin building. He mentioned that they used the [assembly] code for DOS (they went into the archives from when Bill G was at H) as an abstract pattern for a wall mural. I asked him whether anyone had checked the code to see if there where any buffer overflow vulnerabilities. It could make the building susceptible to a worm attack. He didn't get it. Conversation ended abruptly.
    • I also have a funny story. I visited Santa Fe a year ago and stopped to look at the merchandise of a man selling Indian jewelry on the main square downtown. One of the things he was selling was bolo ties.

      Making conversation, I said "Isaac Asimov was known to have worn a bolo tie."

      And he replied "Well tell him to get down here and buy some ties from me."
  • Just thank god.... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Captain Rotundo ( 165816 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:47PM (#8635252) Homepage
    its not the Linus Torvalds building.... all we'd hear for the next two years would be some insane analogy about how it would be like Thomas Jefferson moving into the "George Washington, founding document authors complex" - maybe even something more absurd.

    I kid RMS...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday March 22, 2004 @12:52PM (#8635301)
    There are a few RMSes there, and on a news site an acronym should never be used without using the full form first.
  • by mykepredko ( 40154 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @01:07PM (#8635486) Homepage
    Hmmm... Clearly some testing is required.

    Maybe if somebody could forward it, I could test it out by buying something that will prove that it is actually Gates' card.

    I'm thinking that South Dakota should be adequate for this task.

    myke
  • Rather appropriate (Score:5, Insightful)

    by fm6 ( 162816 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @01:09PM (#8635506) Homepage Journal
    RMS is the classic schoolyard radical. He has all these social theories that he's never had to test in the real world, because he's spent his entire professional career subsisting on grant money.

    Don't get me wrong -- there's nothing wrong with taking grant money. Just because something isn't economically sustainable, doesn't mean it's not worth doing. I just get very tired of the way the "Free Software" folk insist that they've transcended the evils of software "ownership". Which they've never actually done. Their bills are paid for by revenues from the very businesses they are too pure to work for.

    So of course RMS now works in a building that was paid for by the license fees that Microsoft gouged out of hapless computer buyers. What could be more appropriate?

    • by 0x0d0a ( 568518 )
      Don't get me wrong -- there's nothing wrong with taking grant money. Just because something isn't economically sustainable, doesn't mean it's not worth doing. I just get very tired of the way the "Free Software" folk insist that they've transcended the evils of software "ownership". Which they've never actually done. Their bills are paid for by revenues from the very businesses they are too pure to work for.

      You know, it's not as if the lack of IP doesn't have prescedent for functioning. Art and science h
      • If you want to take a strict free-market, no-academia business-only approach...

        Who says the free market can't have academia? While universities traditionally need wealthy patrons, those patrons don't have to be governments. Free markets would be irrelevant to academia only if academia provided goods and services that no one wanted.

        Roads can't exist as a private enterprise either.

        Completely false. Private roads do exist. The only reason they tend to be government institutions is because private concern
    • by stand ( 126023 ) <stan DOT dyck AT gmail DOT com> on Monday March 22, 2004 @05:32PM (#8638277) Homepage Journal
      RMS is the classic schoolyard radical. He has all these social theories that he's never had to test in the real world, because he's spent his entire professional career subsisting on grant money.

      You seem to be laboring under the impression that grant money simply falls from the sky to anyone who asks for it.

      Grant money is just as scare a resource and has as many competitors for it as, say venture capital funds. I'd say the two processes are quite similar, in fact, though the critieria for making awards is somewhat different.

      To the extent that RMS may have subsisted on grant funds is a reflection of the fact that people think his ideas have merit within the very real marketplace thereof.

  • by Zebra_X ( 13249 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @01:28PM (#8635706)
    It would be nice if slashdot didn't partake in the sensationalisim that tends to pervade the media. The reason I say this is is that the summary reads "Gates' credit card was hacked. After all, they did have his mother's maiden name... "
    If the moderators had read the article, they would have noted that Gates card number was not USED for anything, but that some stupid kid had it in his posession. And it's linked to a list of names stolen sometime in the past. As a result the kid was picked up by the FBI. Nothing actually happened concerning gates card.

    Bah.
  • by The Famous Druid ( 89404 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @11:26PM (#8641493)
    Check out the map at http://www.csail.mit.edu/resources/maps/3/381.gif

    I'd be more than happy to bear the shame of the building name, if I got to spend my lunchtime on the holodeck !
  • by Bob Hearn ( 61879 ) on Monday March 22, 2004 @11:59PM (#8641691) Homepage
    As someone else has pointed out, the Stata center (which is the new building complex housing CSAIL) contains both the Gates tower and the Dreyfoos tower. However, the poster incorrecly stated that RMS will be in the Dreyfoos tower. In fact he is in the space between the two towers - known as the "warehouse" space (for reasons which escape me).

    Office location in the Stata Center can be identified by letters attached to the office number. Stallman's office is 32-381, here:

    http://www.csail.mit.edu/resources/maps/3/381.gif [mit.edu]

    (I'm right across the hall, in 32-386.) A Gates office would be, e.g., 32-G585. A Dreyfoos office would be, e.g., 32-D585. Yes, as someone else pointed out, we have a holodeck. :-)

    Most of us are hoping / assuming that, like almost all other buildings at MIT, the new building(s) will be referred to by number, not by name.

    IMHO MIT missed a great opportunity to influence the world for the better by publicly snubbing Gates' offer to fund (a small part of) the new building. But, I'm told, that's just not the way things work...

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