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Comment Infragard is not nefarious (Score 2, Informative) 211

I am an Infragard member. I was working for a university research group and was required to join Infragard as a part of this research. I did not like the idea of being forced to join an organization I knew little to nothing about so I did research into the organization first. I read up on all of the conspiracy theories about Infragard and spoke with some members before joining.

The conspiracy theories link this organization to "big brother" programs that encourage people to spy on their neighbors. This is not actually the case with Infragard - as far as I can tell.

From what I can see, this organization is put into place for very good reasons. Look into the Russian action in Georgia last year - a large component of that military action was cyber-based. The Russians took over the Georgian infrastructure (electric, news and radio) far before tanks rolled into Georgian territory. If the US is ever attacked on a large scale, our infrastructure will be the first strike. Infragard allows a secured group of IT professionals to be "in the loop" on potential threats that cannot be made widely public yet. It also allows these professionals to collaborate on security issues in real time - as they happen.

Say a new worm was propagating across major infrastructure networks. An administrator at the water company finds evidence of this worm and sends a message to Infragard asking if anybody else has seen it. A person working at the electric company reads that message and notices that it matches something they are addressing as well. The issue may be quickly escalated and addressed appropriately. If these individuals had to deal with conventional reporting then the link between two critical infrastructure networks experiencing the same problem at the same time may be missed.

In my experience Infragard does not care a bit about individuals ripping a CD or something. This is about bridging the gap between law enforcement and IT professionals in order to minimize the time it takes to address a potential cyber threat on critical infrastructure.

Registering your IT skills with Infragard is optional, not mandatory. This is not as evil as it sounds and I see much more upside to this than downside.

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Journal Journal: I'm a man 15

It's time to tell the truth. I am a 55 year-old man. My name is Andy Kaufman, and I live in New York City.

I am sincerely sorry to everyone for all my lies.


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Journal Journal: Merry Christmas -- $$$$$exyGal

It's not the new year yet, but it seems like a good time to give thanks.

Long story short, I've had a good year. Great job, short commute, and dating again. I've become focused, but with great flexibility. I'm not sweating the big stuff, or the small stuff. The good stuff is in the middle.

May your holidays be commercial-free,


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Journal Journal: Can the blind see? 30

Xerithane left me a very interesting comment a few weeks ago. Here's a blurb:

For instance, I suffer from a moderately rare eye condition. I will go blind for 3+ hours if I'm exposed to bright light for more than a few minutes. It's like a goths wet dream. When it first happened I was probably 12 or so, and the whole time I sepnt trying to think what blind people saw suddenly made sense.

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Journal Journal: Slashdot Oldtimers? Are there more archives? 21

Just for fun, I decided to peruse the really really old Slashdot stuff to see how everything started. Maybe I'd find quiet thoughtful debate about the HTML CENTER tag (1995?) ? Or maybe some lively debate regarding the plot of "Good Will Hunting (1997)" ?
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Journal Journal: The Evolution of Compassion 14

My Theory of Evolution - Scenario #1: "Now"

By chance, one trait is introduced into the genome of a specific individual living thing. If the trait is immediately advantageous over those of the same species who do not possess the trait, then the trait will very likely be passed along to future generations. If the trait is immediately undesirable, then the individual will be rejected by its peers and will be unable to pass along the new trait. This is called evolution.

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Journal Journal: A serious topic: Why men masturbate. 54

Ok, so I came across this article on Yahoo News, and the obvious conclusion hit me right in the eye. Evolutionarily speaking, men who masturbate have an advantage over men who do not masturbate. The article does not suggest my conclusion, but it seems obvious from the facts given. Here are some facts/quotes given in the article:
  • Men with low sperm counts can si

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