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Comment Do you e-mail around naked photos of yourself? (Score 2) 346

Is it just me, or is it somewhat strange that these celebrities would have naked photos of themselves in their e-mail in the first place? I know I don't have any naked photos of myself in my gmail account, and I'm not even someone everyone wants to see naked. If you were a young, female celebrity who knew everyone wanted to see you naked, wouldn't you think twice before a) taking a naked picture of yourself and b) e-mailing it to anyone.

Or maybe I'm just a prude who doesn't know how to put his cell phone camera to good use.

Comment Re:Agree (Score 1) 338

> Make static analysis much more anal, forcing the programmer to express their intent up front - static types, constraints, etc. Make the compiler a totally pedantic Nazi. Sure, it's nice to be able to hack shit up in an afternoon in Python or whatever, but then it ships, and the bugs come in, and you end up adding a pile of asserts and whatnot that should have been caught way before the product shipped.

Sometimes, but other times I write a function that I call two or three times but never gets used anywhere else. They work fine when I wrote them and they always will. Why should I have to deal with the extra time it takes to get all the types and arguments and interfaces right (and yes, those small bits of time really really really do add up). Python is faster to code that Java. Period. And because I took me 3 times as long just to get a working prototype in front of the customer and now I'm that much closer to being out of budget, we've just been pushed from iterative development right back to the waterfall model. It's all about striking a /balance/ between strict, compiler-enforced, future/change-proof coding and get-er'-done imperfect and fragile but cheap and useful software.

What we /really/ need is language that fully supports strict typing but keeps it optional and allows us to turn type checking on and off at compile-time and on a class-by-class, function-by-function basis. That way we start with quick-and-dirty working prototypes and turn on additional compile-time checks as we go.

> Make unit/integration testing a mandatory part of the build, i.e. the compiler/linker refuses to link with code that hasn't been marked as tested.
Even with a good unit test framework, writing unit tests takes me just as long as writing the original code. And yes of course it /may/ save time later if my unit test catches breakage as things change, but half the time it's the unit test rather than the code that needs to change when a unit test fails. Whether unit testing has a net benefit is project dependent. Who pays for the extra time unit testing takes if it's always mandatory?

> If we learned to put the hard thinking and effort into designing APIs, and then reusing those same APIs across whole new classes of problem (because the language makes defining APIs is such a hassle that we'd rather not dream up new ones left and right), I think things would improve massively.
So you're saying we should just think about our requirements a bit more up front before we go writing code? I know getting those requirements on paper before they're in code /always/ makes things go better. ;) Oh, wait, that's not right. Actually, in the history of software development, no one has ever developed an even remotely useful set of requirements before writing some code and putting it in front of users. You've got to code the API, use it, find it where its design falls down, fix it, fix all the code that uses it, and eventually, over time, you end up with something that's both stable and good (not bug-free and perfect, but stable and good). It's called mature software, and short of a crystal ball, iterative development and time is the only thing I've ever seen produce it.

> None of this would stop you from writing shitty code. But at least, to do so, you'd have to knowingly subvert the compiler in a bogus way, ignoring screeds of the compiler telling you that you and your code suck goats' balls.
Have you ever tried compiling anything remotely complicated with gcc? The compile logs are filled with warning this and incompatible type that, yet the resulting software works quite well. Based on compiler complaints, I don't think I've ever seen code more complicated than Hello, World! that doesn't suck goats' balls. The /real/ solution are things like the language-based buffer overflow and garbage collection fixes you mentioned above. It's simply syntactically-impossible to write a buffer overflow or memory leak in java/ruby/python/perl/etc. (Other types of bad memory management are still possible, but not a proper textbook buffer overflow or leak.) The real question is "What are common software problems (including time-sucks) and how do we change programming language not to warn us or refuse to compile, but eliminate them in a conceptual manner?"

I find that I/O (shuffling stuff from disk/stream/database to objects and data structures in memory) is by far the most error-prone and time consuming part of software development, even with ORMs like ActiveRecord and REST/yaml/json. I think we need better data persistence mechanisms that completely hide underlying storage from the programmer. Eliminate things like open(), read(), write() query('select'), obj->save(). Replace them with things like MyObj[] objs = find('some new query language here'), persistMemorySpace('some optional limits'). The missing piece is a way to pick-and-choose what gets saved and loaded when. JSON.stringify(myobj) is mostly like persistMemorySpace(), but you hit problems with recursion and lack of intelligence to pick-and-choose what to save. ActiveRecord's find() lets you load objects from a single table in one shot, but hitting a related objects hits the database again on an object-by-object basis. And you're still stuck manually specifying relationships which you've already specified in the database schema. We need a better query language that lets us select some subset of all objects in memory both for saving and loading and still auto-loads and auto-saves as necessary.

Wireless Networking

Submission + - Is Verizon still charging for tethering on their 4G spectrum? ( 1

pseudorand writes: I just discussed upgrading to a 4G phone with sales reps at both a Verizon store and Best Buy. Both told me I had to pay an extra $20/month for tethering. Remembering the FCC ruling mentioned in this ./ article: ...I was of course a bit surprised.

Is anyone getting free 4G tethering on a Verizon plan? This article seems to imply that Verizon would no longer attempt to charge customers for tethering with usage-based plans (the only type still available if you take their phone discount) or attempt to hide the reality of free tethering:

From my reading of the ruling:
they can still charge for it and have no obligation to let customers know about free tethering, they just can't tell Google to block tethering apps.

Is Verizon still in violation of the FCC ruling?

(I would hope so and I've already filed my complaint with the FCC:

Comment Re:Nick Hanauer's economic illiteracy (Score 1) 706

> I'll be blunt and very pragmatic in my final reply here: Entrepreneurship doesn't count for anything if your brilliant new idea doesn't have a block of consumers who have the disposable income

You're trying to make things black and white. Entrepreneurship can be good or bad depending on what you invent.

You're right if you invented, say, a really fun video game. People want it, but there's a limit to how much they'll shell out. But say you invented a pill someone could take once that cured their diabetes forever. Even if it cost $1000 each that's way less than the cost of insulin, doctor's visits and complications over a lifetime. People would find a way to buy it because it would save money in the long run.

Lack of disposable income limits the opportunities for certain types of inventions. But it increases the opportunities for inventions that add efficiency to the economy and save people money in the long run.

Think of cars. Upon first invention, they were a luxury. Horse and buggy did just fine for most people. But those with cars got such benefits that today (unless you live in one of the few US cities with decent public transit) a car is a necessity just to get to your job.

Submission + - Best Linux game for young kids 2

pseudorand writes: I have a 3 year old that I've so far kept away from TV and computers. I met a gamer who has a 1 year old that plays xbox (probably better than I do). I believe kids should experience the real world first, but computers will obviously be a basic job still for the foreseeable future and I'm afraid I'm letting my kid fall behind.

I'd like to responsibly introduce my son to computers so he can start developing hard-eye coordination, typing skills and learning UI concepts. What's the best (Linux, of course) game to get a kid started with? Shoot-em-up's are obviously out, but I'm more concerned with something that will help him understand how to interact with a mouse, keyboard and screen and hold his attention rather than something 'educational' because there's plenty of (probably more effective) ways to teach math, reading, etc. that don't involve a computer.

So far I've tried Tux Racer, which held his attention for 10 minutes or so. He doesn't quite get pressing multiple keys simultaneously yet.

Comment Re:Biden won, see Ryans wife's expression (Score 1) 698

Give me a break. I said I'm still voting Obama/Biden (and anyone else with a 'D' by their name because with a full time job and kid and dog and house I truly don't have time to learn all the things I'd need to to be a responsible voter). I just think Obama should have at least done a little prep for the first debase and Biden should have done something other than be angry to make up for Obama's poor performance.

And as for the Advantage Consultants and Rove, not a chance. I think I'm like the slight majority of Americans. I'm fiscally conservative but I vote Democratic because the republicans just 'say' they're fiscally conservative (they spend, they just do it all on military and tax breaks for the wealthy) and I understand that cutting all government spending is just short term gain/long term loss.

But can someone /please/ responsibly reform entitlements and the tax code in a way that doesn't fill the streets with old, sick homeless people or make the rich richer.


Submission + - Everyday Cryptography

benrothke writes: "Untitled documentol{margin:0;padding:0}.c5{max-width:468pt;background-color:#ffffff;padding:72pt 72pt 72pt 72pt}.c0{text-align:justify;direction:ltr}.c2{color:#1155cc;text-decoration:underline}.c3{color:inherit;text-decoration:inherit}.c4{font-style:italic}.c1{font-size:12pt}.title{padding-top:24pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#000000;font-size:36pt;font-family:"Arial";font-weight:bold;padding-bottom:6pt}.subtitle{padding-top:18pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#666666;font-style:italic;font-size:24pt;font-family:"Georgia";padding-bottom:4pt}li{color:#000000;font-size:11pt;font-family:"Arial"}p{color:#000000;font-size:11pt;margin:0;font-family:"Arial"}h1{padding-top:24pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#000000;font-size:18pt;font-family:"Arial";font-weight:bold;padding-bottom:6pt}h2{padding-top:18pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#000000;font-size:14pt;font-family:"Arial";font-weight:bold;padding-bottom:4pt}h3{padding-top:14pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#666666;font-size:12pt;font-family:"Arial";font-weight:bold;padding-bottom:4pt}h4{padding-top:12pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#666666;font-style:italic;font-size:11pt;font-family:"Arial";padding-bottom:2pt}h5{padding-top:11pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#666666;font-size:10pt;font-family:"Arial";font-weight:bold;padding-bottom:2pt}h6{padding-top:10pt;line-height:1.15;text-align:left;color:#666666;font-style:italic;font-size:10pt;font-family:"Arial";padding-bottom:2pt}

When Bruce Schneier first published Applied Cryptographyin 1994, it was a watershed event, given that is was one of the first comprehensive texts on the topic that existed outside of the military.

In the nearly 20 years since the book came out, a lot has changed in the world of encryption and cryptography. A number of books have been written to fill that gap and Everyday Cryptography: Fundamental Principles and Applicationsis one of them that have recently been published.

While the title Everyday Cryptographymay give the impression that this is an introductory text; that is not the case. Author Keith Martin is the director of the information security group at Royal Holloway, a division of the University of London, and the book is meant for information security professionals in addition to being used as a main reference for a principles of cryptography course. The book is also a great reference for those studying for the CISSP exam.

While the book notes that almost no prior knowledge of mathematics is required since the book deliberately avoids the details of the mathematical techniques underpinning cryptographic mechanisms. That might be a bit of a misnomer as the book does get into the mathematics of cryptography. While the mathematics in the book is not overwhelming, they are certainly not underwhelming. For those that want a deeper look, the book includes an appendix for many of the mathematical concepts detailed in the book.

Two benefits of the book are that it stresses practical aspects of cryptography and real-world scenarios. The mathematics detailed avoids number throaty with a focus on practicability. It also shows how cryptography is used as the underlying technology behind information security, rather than simply focusing on the abstracts of the potential of cryptography.

With that, the books 13 (made up of 4 parts) chapters provide a comprehensive overview of the theory and practice around all as aspects of contemporary cryptography. Each of the chapters end with a summary, detailed lists of items for further reading, and sets of penetration questions that challenge the reader. Readers are advised to spend time on these questions as it is often easy for the reader to feel that they understand the material. The questions can quickly humble the reader and show them that it may not be the case.

Part 1 is titled Setting the Sceneand provides a comprehensive introduction to the fundamental of cryptography. Chapter 1 (freely available here) details the basic principles about cryptography and provides a high-level introduction.

Chapter 2 provides a good overview of the history of cryptography. It details a number of obsolete, yet historically relevant ciphers, such as the Vigenère cipher from the 1500's, to the Playfair cipher from the mid-1800's and others. Martin provides a good overview of the cryptanalysis of the Vigenère cipher and lessons learned from it.

Chapters 4-9 comprise part 2, and provide a thorough overview of the various forms of encryption (symmetric and asymmetric) and digital signatures. This section gets into some of the deeper mathematics of cryptography. While the author states that almost no prior knowledge of mathematics is needed; those without a background will surely be confused by some of the material.

Chapter 7 closes with a good overview of the relationship between digital signatures and handwritten signatures. The author notes the importance of resisting any temptation to consider digital signatures as a direct electronic equivalentof handwritten signatures. He then provides a detailed outline of the environmental, security, practical and flexibility differences between them.

Key management is one of the most important aspects of cryptography and often the most difficult to execute on. Part of the difficulty around key management is at the user level, with key updates, passphrase management and more. Ultimately, effective key management is essential to the underlying security of the cryptosystem. The 2 chapters in part 3 provide a thorough synopsis of the fundamentals of key management.

Part 4 closes the book with two chapters on practical cryptographic applications. Chapter 12 details how cryptography can be used on the internet, secure payment cards, video broadcasting and more.

The book concludes with an appendix on the mathematics of cryptography, which takes a look at the basic mathematical concepts the underlie some of the material in the book.

This book is not for the fainthearted and is not an introductory text on the topic. It is meant for the advanced reader or someone taking a college level course. For such a reader serious about a significant overview of the essentials on the topic, Everyday Cryptography: Fundamental Principles and Applicationsis an excellent reference.

Ben Rothkeis the author of Computer Security: 20 Things Every Employee Should Know."
The Military

Submission + - US Navy Cruiser and Submarine Collide (

An anonymous reader writes: Despite billions of dollars in advanced electronics, radars,and sonar it seems the Navy needs to install backup cameras on their boats. "The Pentagon said late Saturday that it is investigating why a Navy submarine collided with an Aegis cruiser during routine operations at an undisclosed location."

Submission + - Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta warns of a possibile "cyber-Pearl Harbor" (

SpzToid writes: Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta warned Thursday that the United States was facing the possibility of a “cyber-Pearl Harbor” and was increasingly vulnerable to foreign computer hackers who could dismantle the nation’s power grid, transportation system, financial networks and government.

Countries such as Iran are motivated to conduct such attacks, in retaliation actually.

Perhaps old news around here, even though Panetta is in-fact requesting new legislation from congress and the sentate, isn't the message wise and current that "we would be much better served if we accepted that prevention eventually fails, so we need detection, response, and containment for the incidents that will occur." as Richard Bejtlich has argued in his security blog?

Incidentally, Richard has also written a Top 10 list of the best ways to stir up the security pot (

  If you want to start a debate/argument/flamewar in security, pick any of the following.

        "Full disclosure" vs "responsible disclosure" vs whatever else
        Threat intelligence sharing
        Value of security certifications
        Exploit sales
        Advanced-ness, Persistence-ness, Threat-ness, Chinese-ness of APT
        Reality of "cyberwar"
        "Builders vs Breakers"
        "Security is an engineering problem," i.e., "building a new Internet is the answer."
        "Return on security investment"
        Security by mandate or legislation or regulation

But seriously folks, time do change, don't they? (Even in the technology sector) Currently the congress is preoccupied with the failure of US security threats in Benghazi, while maybe Leon isn't getting the press his recent message deserves?

Comment Biden lost hard (Score 1, Insightful) 698

Am I the only one who though Biden lost hard? He was obviously angry and emotional, but his arguments were almost completely defensive, arguing why Ryan was lying or wrong, but very little criticism of the Romney/Ryan platform. And much of what he said seemed incoherent. Ryan on the other hand kept his cool, made compelling and reasonable-sounding (though possibly completely wrong) arguments. Biden was a cornered animal fighting for his life. Ryan was the fearless hunter who knew he would win in any case.

And I'm almost always a reliable Democratic voter.

That said, I don't believe the Romney/Ryan position. Cutting taxes may help the economy, but will disproportionately benefit the rich. Big stock portfolio? It grows with the economy. As the money trickles down, the rich keep their share before the rest of us ever see it. I also don't believe there's enough loopholes to pay for it, so it will increase the deficit in order to hand cash directly to high income earners. I do like the idea of economic growth to inflate our way out of the Social Security/Medicare/Medicade problem, but will congress really not increase payments under those programs as the economy grows? And the slash and burn attitude Romney had towards federal discretionary spending will /hurt/ the economy, possibly more than the tax cuts will help.

In the end, I think Obama is right. We're in a pickle and we'll have to endure both tax cuts and spending cuts to get out off it. If we focus those on the rich, the poor and middle class will continue to spend and at the very least they won't slow growth too much.

I still think Biden lost hard though. The only question is whether he did worse or just almost as bad as Obama. I had to do a lot of thinking to decide why I wasn't considering voting republican. I wish I'd voted for Hillary 4.5 years ago now though.

Comment Re:Free Market (Score 1) 309

> Government is far more efficient than private industry at doing things.
That's just a stupid as "the free market is always more efficient" statement your opposition makes.

The point of the free market is not that it's more efficient (sometimes it is, sometimes it's not), but that when a private company screws up only the people who choose to invest in that company loose. When the government screws up, taxpayers (who are compelled to pay under thread of jail) loose.

As for the post office, they're loosing money, so you have to calculate the cost bailouts we've already paid and will pay for through our taxes. (Those won't total up to the $15 UPS charges, but still...)

The real problem is that supposedly private businesses also get loads of taxpayer money in the form of tax breaks (oil and agriculture), cheap government backed money (crop insurance, home loans, mortgage interest deduction that only exceeds the minimum standard on $250k+ homes and that rich people can take on up to two properties) and bailouts (the financial and auto industries). So the taxpayer is on the hook when things go bad, but investors get all the profit when things go well.

And it's gets worse, because the rich have the poor and middle class by the balls. For example:
* We all like cheap food and gas, so we can't cut the oil and agriculture tax breaks or crop insurance subsidies. We'd go broke and starve while the market adjusted.
* The middle class have most of our net worth in the overpriced housing market, so we can't end government backed home loans or the mortgage interest deduction because we'll loose disproportionately when the housing market adjusts to free market levels.
* If we hadn't bailed out the auto industry, we'd have even bigger middle-class job losses and lose our already failing foothold in an industry vital to our way of life (bad in the long run).
* If we hadn't bailed out the financial industry the rich would have lost disproportionately, but our parents (who's liquid net worth is mostly in retirement accounts) would have had to sell their homes and move in with us.

Government subsidies and tax breaks seem good for the poor but really just make us dependent on government and put the power in the hand of the rich (who buy off our lawmakers). We've all got to keep working hard forever just to stay afloat.

Government's role should be to compete with private industry for vital services when private industry simply isn't doing a good job. For example:
* Communication - This used to be the post office, which worked well. Now private telcos leave huge amounts of America with embarrassingly slow access and expensive costs. The feds need to run some wires like they do in other countries. (Granted, S. Korea needs much shorter wires, but...)
* Energy research - Cheaper, cleaner, more diversely sourced and more efficiently used energy is obviously the #1 limiting factor in our economy. Water? With free energy we just desalinate seawater and pump it. Fertile ground? Takes energy to make and distribute fertilizer. Shipping goods where they're needed? How much do truckers spend on gas? But come one private industry? Where's our nation-wide smart grid and smart appliances? Why don't we pump water up hill when the wind is blowing and sun is shining and use hydroelectric when it's not?

Education is the counter-example though. The government has screwed that up, possibly due to teacher's unions keeping bad teachers at high costs. But educating everyone benefits everyone ('cuz that dropout will be the one robbing your house instead of designing your car or fixing your computer), so we still need a solution where everyone pays and everyone gets a good education. We just need free markets to fire bad teachers and get paid based on results (where job/salary=results).

Comment Don't do it! (Score 1) 375

So, if you're returning to the US, does that mean there's a computer-related job opening in somewhere in South Korea? 'cuz I've about had it with the lack of wireless and wired broadband here in the supposedly most advanced country in the world. If you could introduce me to your South Korean employer, I'd very much appreciate it.

(Actually, I have Verizon and Century Link. Speed is next to useless, but good wireless coverage, no dropped calls and my DSL line is rarely down.)

Comment /not/ LEEDS certified (Score 1) 422

First, make sure it's /not/ leeds certified. We recently had a building put up that is and:
* No sever room (couldn't make it happen)
* Computers powered off at night (oops, there's goes our non-invasive backup strategy)
* Due to some HVAC issue where the building is potentially unsafe during the non-business-hours cycle, people can't be in the building after 6 PM. There goes our ability to visit every computer after working hours (which every so often you have to do for one reason or another).

Comment win win? (Score 1) 747

I'd say it's a lose lose. If he's violating parole, we have to arrest him, but that make the violent criminals* of the Muslim world think their crimes impact the behavior of the US government.

* No, I don't mean all Muslims, just those willing to kill and destroy property because some idiot said something mean about the Profit**.

** I wonder if Jesus and Mohamed are in heaven asking God to make with the lightning bolts every time someone makes fun of them down hear on earth?

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Nobody's gonna believe that computers are intelligent until they start coming in late and lying about it.