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Comment Re:Huh? (Score 4, Funny) 700

What are the consequences of refusing this firmware update?

After awhile, it'll cease to have any networking support. Even the browser will turn off. Who knows -- it's proprietary. They might even have a logic bomb in there that after a year, it erases all your savegames, stomps on it's own dick, and declares war on Panama in your name, all while throwing the reds in with the whites and focusing microwave energies into your freezer to make your ice cream all melty.

Comment BEAT HAZARD! (Score 1) 256

The opening game should be Beat Hazard if this manages to come together. :) How I've become so addicted to this Asteroids like Steam game that produces "levels" based on your individual mp3 tracks with pulsating visual feedback effects to nearly give anybody a seizure. Welcome Steam!

Comment Re:Cheaper and better than cable (Score 1) 224

This is a good start, but it needs to go further. I probably wouldn't be interested in paying for every baseball game, but I would be interested in paying less just to receive the games of the teams I care about. Same thing with football. I'd be interested in DirecTV Sunday Ticket, but not if I have to pay however much it is for every team, when I only really care about Green Bay.

Comment Re:Oh shut up (Score 0) 530

If he left the job (willingly or otherwise) and then divulged the root password to someone who wasn't supposed to have it, he'd definitely be walking on thin ice.

Not really. It's only a crime to access a computer unlawfully, not tell someone how to. Unless, of course, you're inciting them to or advocating criminal activity. Case in point; it's perfectly lawful for you to own a gun or a chemistry set, but not shoot someone or detonate an explosive.

Comment Re:Oh shut up (Score 4, Insightful) 530

It is real simple: Whoever owns the systems, and their designated agents, have a right to have access.

Yeah, say that with a straight face to the guy demanding the root password because he read "it was important", and you got a call last week from him asking you to change his desktop wallpaper because "it got stuck". IT admins not going in for that kind of non-sense is a compelling reason why large sections of the internet don't slide off the side of the planet in a dribble-like fashion.

This guy was responsible for critical public infrastructure -- infrastructure that kept working for months after they fired him. They broke it repeatedly after gaining access, and it took hundreds, if not thousands, of billable hours to repair the damage that happened when those owners and their "designated agents" got their hands around the gooey core of the network.

Justice is about harmony, not law and order.

Comment Re:I know just where to use it first... (Score 1) 430

Back in the 30's the US Government used to sterilize people for being poor. The thinking was that being poor was hereditary, so by preventing the poor from breeding we could eliminate the poor gene. Some claim that we used to do it to people like minorities or the handicapped without ever even informing them, usually during hospitalizations.

In fact, the US was one of the first nations in the world to actively implement Eugenics programs intended to "tidy up" the gene pool. Then we got all righteous calling the Nazi's evil.

Comment Re:What can be done? Nothing. (Score 3, Informative) 511

Yes, your bank account may get cleaned out (or depleted up to the daily spending limit of your debit card), and outstanding checks may bounce, and you may have a freeze on your account until it gets resolved. However, this zero liability guarantee means any transactions found to be fraudulent will be reimbursed by your bank. The bank then goes after the merchant that processed the transaction to recoup their own losses. If you have a good bank, they'll also refund your overdraft fees.

Meaning no offense, but why in the hell would this make me want a debit card?

Maybe the bank would give me back my fees and losses, but I've still bounced checks with God-knows-who and caused them all manner of hassle and had them incur fees and lost trust with them. If my bank account gets cleaned out the day before my IRS check hits, do you seriously think they'll just chuckle and say "oopsie, well, we'll clear it again". No. I'm going to spend hours on the phone with everyone I sent a check or made an automated payment to, trying to dig my way out of the hole that used to be my bank account.

I've had an account cleanout happen (account was cleaned out by lawyers suing my parents, and I stupidly left my mother's name on my bank account). My mortgage and car payment checks were in the outgoing mail the same day I received the "summons to trustee" notice, and all my money was gone. It worked out, but I had to take two days off work (lost vacation time) to make all the necessary phone calls, and I still had a black mark on my credit rating for several years afterward, even though none of the bounced checks were determined to be my fault. I worked for a bank service company at the time, and they routinely pulled credit ratings (since I handled account details on a lot of people). I had to spend a couple of hours explaining the whole situation at work, and it's possible I could have lost my job over it. Fortunately I didn't. Net result was an absolute nightmare, and my bank was actually pretty nice and helpful about the whole thing.

I also had my credit card number compromised once (Hannaford breach, and my card was actually used overseas). Visa called me, said that the card had been suspended but that any automated payments I had set up would work for another week to give me time to transition to the new card number, went through the outstanding charges over the phone to verify that they were all valid, apologized for the inconvenience, and I never even saw any of the fraudulent charges at all. I spent 15 minutes on the phone with them, 10 minutes entering the new card on my automated payments, and another 5 minutes cutting up the old card when the new one came in. Impact to my credit rating: none.

"Yes, the debit card can be almost as secure as the credit card if you use it as a credit card, and if your bank is really nice the resulting damage to your account and credit rating can be built back to almost new after a lot of effort!"

Thanks, I'll use a credit card. If it gets used fraudulently, the onus is on the credit card company to help me out, because my money is not gone. A credit card does not have access to my checking account. That's a very important distinction to me.

Comment Re:News Flash: Apple limits app store! (Score 0, Troll) 664

There isn't anyone upset with the app store inconsistency and stupidity that owns an iPhone? Really?

Didn't say so. I'm sure there are but they seem to be a small minority.

And I'm not sure what you are betting on.

I'm betting that probably 99% of iPhone users will never hear about this and even they did they would give a resigned yawn and not care.

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We must believe that it is the darkest before the dawn of a beautiful new world. We will see it when we believe it. -- Saul Alinsky