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Comment Re:ssh (Score 1) 132

Kind of a shaggy dog story there, the alternative shaggy dog story to yours is that (as of 1999, I'm old) the only way to make a Windows NT server meet B2 security requirements was to remove the network card, keyboard and monitor and keep the machine in a locked room with no physical access.

In context to the story, the thing that slays your dragon (complex passwords, etc) is a token system like openid, which is aided in great length by integrated private key exchanges

The push back that you will get at this point is from executives (OpenID is EXPENSIVE) and BOFHs (key exchanges make your head hurt), but it is always fun to torment those groups, particularly after you discover that some knucklehead has used your SAN to store DVDs on

Comment Re:ssh (Score 5, Informative) 132

implementation and usage are the weakest links in any security plan

any given encryption tool can be made weak in implementation by using short keys or failing to salt the encryption

any security infrastructure can be made weak by users who send email in clear text, directly exchange passwords in the same medium the password is used for, continue to use telnet or ftp when ssh and sftp are available

It makes me happy to think about a completely secure computer system with NO USERS since that is the only way that you could possibly make a system secure

Comment What does it mean to be willing? (Score 5, Insightful) 111

I am 'willing' to not get downsized in the next set of sweeps
I am 'willing' to keep my income from stagnating
I am 'willing' to not seem less competitive than other workers

of course you could replace 'willing' with 'scared shitless', 'being strong-armed' or 'having a gun held to my head' and it would describe the situation all the same

What is truly shocking is the long-term loss of effectiveness of unions and/or their complete lack of influence in hi-tech 'salary' jobs. Sure, you can poo poo Unions, their largess in the '70s even their (apparently) corrupt leadership, but it is high time that Americans came to realize the positive benefits of Union membership and the need to maintain leverage against corporate leadership that seems willing to work us to death and feed our remains back to the rest of the workers (for the sake of shareholder value dammit)

Yeah, I'm willing, yeah I'm tired, yeah it gives me a sad chuckle to read about the rosy projections from the 1950's about 20 hour workweeks and the benefits of automation

Comment Re:missing option (Score 2) 321

Please do not forget to put a heat sink between the soldering iron and delicate components

The prettiest soldering job in the world is for naught if you let the magic smoke out of the components

I had a summer job during college doing re-work on fmu-113/b's (look it up), since they 'flew' (actually fell) is was my employer's policy to train for one level higher of competency, that being aero-space. Rework is interesting because you get to see how things actually fail and repair them which usually involves testing components, removing defects, removing solder, repairing boards, replacing components and then wrapping it all up for QA to re-inspect

That said, most solder work that I see on consumer products has pits, resin, dull areas, uneven distribution of solder and I find myself surprised that it ever worked in the first place

These days the most ambitious stuff that I do is replace broken leads to various plugs and connectors that break from too much strain, and yes, my work is probably not much better than the stuff that I complain about. Mostly due to not applying sufficient heat for fear of cooking components on the same board

Comment Re:SciFi don't dictate what I love, or dis-love (Score 1) 448

Actually nifty, you have illustrated that you are pretty keen on how awesome you are and that nothing gets even remotely close to your awesomeness...

Don't feel too bad, you probably push around a single piece of technology in a group of people who who have no understanding but are really appreciative, it tends to give individuals an overrated sense of importance, but a need to be very critical of anything else that is actually awesome

Oh, wait! I was supposed to critic the Stephenson novel, not you... sorry

So, the Baroque cycle held my interest because it managed to bring together many different historical elements that preceded the Enlightenment Era. I had passing knowledge of many elements of it, but to have it all laid out in a palatable storyline with the occasional Neil-ism (bloody awful puns blown up as big as a building but still invisible to a large portion of the audience) was truly enjoyable. Amongst the high-points... Ottoman-European interactions, pirate trade in Trinidad, European recovery from the black death, transition of money from weight in minted silver to representational value... Only minor complaint was the sex scenes got a little repetitive and I could not figure out if he held himself back or was just embarrassed

So, yeah in my mind Neil managed to demonstrate that he cannot only make deep technical manuals interesting , but can make economics and history texts enjoyable, not an easy task and apparently not appreciated by self-absorbed know-it-alls

Comment Re:SciFi don't dictate what I love, or dis-love (Score 1) 448

Read the series years ago and actually enjoyed it

I was working on an MBA and the combination of transitioning my thought processes from technical (as a software developer for financial systems) to a business frame was aided somewhat by enjoying a story-line that spoke to the origins of modern monetary systems and the interactions of the age of enlightenment.

May just be me, but I found it useful

Comment Re:Nope. (Score 1) 416

I was forcibly pushed from a 'pure' development role into management. This came gradually, first being labeled a 'project manager', they 'promoted' into an office where I spend all of my time meeting customers expectations, compiling reports to upper management, working to keep my developers comfortable enough so that they do not take other job offers and rarely (oh soooo rarely) having an opportunity to help debug a program and demonstrate my skilz

This can be accomplished in a gradual manner that does not put significant risk on your income or your children's future, but you will have to live with your (and your staff's) beliefs that you must be completely worthless since you are yet another manager...

My advice... get to know some managers, maybe even work to establish relationships at the executive level in order to identify opportunities to move into management and learn how to look like the sort of fellow they would like to work with

Comment Re:An easy solution (Score 2) 152

You seem to be ignoring the output of burned hydro carbons, namely carbon dioxide

The true hydrogen fanbois are looking forward to fuel cells that provide a portable power source that has no CO2 emissions. That is no easy bill to fill, so I at least can understand their joy at finding a way to transport hydrogen safely since it has been one of the major red herrings in the push to use fuel cells

As far as a higher cost to produce Hydrogen goes... the key words are portable and non-portable. Non-portable power sources (nuclear, I'm looking at you) can be used to break out the hydrogen, which can then be used (via this new 'gas' tank) to power a portable device like a fuel cell.

Would I rather have a 'Mr Fusion' to power my vehicle? you betcha, but the idea of finally delivering a practical hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicle is frankly exciting

Comment Re:Inexpensively? (Score 2) 152

I guess that it is inexpensive if it works forever...

A former employer has a solid state storage system for toxic gases that seems similar on the surface:
SDS is a groundbreaking technology designed to reduce the hazards and environmental risks associated with transporting, storing, and delivering highly toxic gases. The SDS3 employs a novel nano-porous adsorbent to contain hazardous gases at sub atmospheric pressures. SDS houses toxic gases at sub-atmospheric pressure-virtually eliminating catastrophic releases while dramatically minimizing fabrication downtime.

the system is delivered as stainless steel canisters with a metered connection on the top, not sure what 'magic' is going on inside... and it sure the heck was not inexpensive

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