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Comment Re:Cell phones are usually tied to a person (Score 2) 445

Grandstream is good for "cheap" phones of acceptable quality. They just recently announced this:

Although it might sound nice to have the whole interface be a touch screen, I think that the hard-keys for dedicated functions end up improving the usability of the device.

Comment Re:I'd love to ! (Score 1) 601

If I could, I totally would.

This argument doesn't make sense though. Even in public traditionally, there's always been a fairly reasonable expectation of privacy, (despite what the law says) because you expect you can only be heard within earshot of your chat. Only recently that technology is affording the law a means to observe + record these interactions " in public " are we starting to push right up against that definition.

Keep in mind a single email won't be sensitive, but a bunch of emails in aggregate can potentially be. And besides; if you encrypt just that 1 sensitive message in a mass of unencrypted 'less sensitive' messages --- it's going to stick out like a sore thumb, and an attacker (be it lawful or unlawful) will focus all their resources on that 1 message.

I think you're just not paranoid enough.

Comment I'd love to ! (Score 4, Informative) 601

My sig (since 2002/2001) on /. has been "Why arn't you encrypting your email?".

The answer is simple -- there was never a critical mass of people exchanging keys nor was there an easy-to-explain web of trust, nor was there a simple, free reliable certificate authority.

In 2002, Outlook Express offered integrated s/mime encryption + digital signatures. Once you installed your certificate (which, was simply double clicking a .p12 file, and entering your import password), you could encrypt or sign email going out, with a single click. It verified signatures in inbound email too, all in an integrated UI.

No one I knew used it.

Even today; Windows Live mail + Thunderbird offer integrated s/mime encryption. Maybe 1 or 2 of my technically literate friends use it. And of those 2, i think only one persists using it to this day.

Back then, when all I had was my Palm Pilot IIIxe, I thought "Whoa. I hold in my hand a portable computer that I can use to exchange digital signatures with". I even kept my pgp key in a note I could beam to someone, given the chance. Never happened.

Nowadays, even AGP on Android doesn't let me exchange keys with someone meet on the street, on the off change they happen to use it. Secure key exchange would be a trivial problem for today's smart phones (provided the carrier isn't using carrieriq to swipe your data....), but there still is no critical mass to make this worthwhile.

And, with most folks using webmail, You'd have to come up with a hackish way to encrypt mail client side (pgp copy/paste to the clipboard? w/ Rich text? attachments?), or just hand your keys to your provider. Doing the encryption server side would make the service provider an easy target for legal and hacking threats.

It's a tough nugget to crack, and it's not going to be solved until mail encryption is as easy to use as Facebook.

Comment Re:No, that's not a solution (Score 2) 548

Remote attestation will verify the trust all the way to the root platform key, be it Microsoft's or another vendor.

The power to install my *OWN* key, means *I* have the power to trust that *my* server, with *my* software has not been compromised. This is kind of a big deal, and helps protect against all sorts of rootkits.

A toggle that is simply "Use MS's Key" and "Use no key at all" is not an acceptable option.

Comment Re:Why is this a problem? (Score 1) 1797

Well, this is discussing a 'loan' program, not a 'grant' program, so the government is on the hook only if folks default on these loans.

That aside, how do you give folks who *are* motivated, and whose parents emphasize the important of education, but just aren't financially able to do so?

I have kids now, but between the loss of equity in my home, and the rising cost of living, I have no idea how I'm going to be able to afford the same opportunity my parents gave me to my kids.

I 100% agree with you though, there needs to be a emphasis on a culture of learning, and the unfunded NCLB crap forces schools to spend on these useless programs instead of programs to inspire children and parents.

Comment Re:Why is this a problem? (Score 1) 1797

The government collects money and redistributes it in a way that [supposedly] improves the nation and the people in it.

Do you want to live in a nation where there are no educated people to work alongside you? Where the only college-educated folks demand a salary that unnecessarily raises the cost of goods (further increasing inflation)?

The *real* problem is that you need to invest *more than you'll make* to acquire a job that pays a wage that has any hint of ever paying a living wage. And large companies are just moving labor to countries where it's cheaper to employ people, so the investment is proving to be worthless.

Fewer and fewer jobs remain that do not require college educations, and the quality of life for these folks are poor, with few options out. It's no longer sufficient to work hard and be successful, you have to get lucky, or come from money already.

Comment Re:Google pack :( (Score 1) 167

I know that they OSSed it, but the value add is chasing all the current versions of software out there, and packaging them into silent installs.

I was not aware of Ninite, but as numerous replies to this post point out, it looks like it's a pretty nice replacement, with many more options, including software that we frequently used in our system

Comment Google pack :( (Score 2) 167

Google Pack: Due to the rapidly decreasing demand for downloadable software in favor of web apps, we will discontinue Google Pack today. People will still be able to access Googleâ(TM)s and our partnersâ(TM) software quickly and easily through direct links on the Google Pack website.

Of all these services, this upsets me the most. No where was I able to find a nice installer/packge manager for windows that installed all these packages automatically w/o any cruft or addons, and kept it all up-to-date.

Also, I seriously dispute their claim of "rapidly decreasing demand for downloadable software in favor of web apps". There are a whole host of benefits that downloadable software give, that web apps do not. (like, when the provider stops supporting the software, you still have access to it .....)

Comment SDK Licensing (Score 2, Interesting) 137

From the FAQ

I noticed that the license terms for the Microsoft Kinect device allow the use of the device with the Xbox 360 and Xbox 360 S game consoles only. How can I use the Kinect device with the SDK Beta?

Even though the warranty and software license terms for the Kinect device prohibit the use of the device with any platform other than Xbox 360 and Xbox 360 S, the license agreement for the SDK Beta supplements the Kinect device warranty and software license terms to allow your use of the device with the SDK Beta on Windows computers as well.

I know that other drivers and development software for Kinect are available on the Web. Can I use the Kinect sensor device with these other drivers or software instead of the SDK Beta?

No. Use of the Kinect sensor device is subject to its own warranty and software license agreement that allow you to use it solely in connection with an Xbox 360 or Xbox 360 S console. Only Microsoft can grant you the additional rights that you need to use the Kinect sensor device with a personal computer. Microsoft grants these additional rights in the SDK Beta license, but only for uses of the Kinect sensor device in connection with the SDK Beta. If you use the Kinect sensor with a platform other than Xbox 360, Xbox 360 S, or Windows (with the SDK Beta), you void the warranty you received when you purchased the Kinect sensor device.

So, Even though you saw all those cool demos a few months ago using 'unlicensed' software, you're not allowed to run them, and they could be punished for software licence violations.

A hardware device requires a software license?

Comment Re:Local cloud servers? Really?! (Score 1) 94

One use case (and why amazon isn't all over this is beyond me) is to keep a big enough private 'cloud' for your system's base capacity. When you need extra capacity in a hurry you simply tell your management system to also add nodes from a 3rd party 'cloud', and your infrastructure is tested, and ready to go there. You can then grow your private cloud at your leisure.

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