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Comment Re:Yeah right (Score 2) 326

Well partially, but I'd argue the addresses have a lot to do with it, too. My home subnet is My firewall blocks anything coming from the outside world bound for That's nice, but doesn't really ever do anything because damn near every router between me and a potential attacker drops packets that are to or from the reserved networks, because it has no idea where to send them. About the only way it would be a viable attack is from somebody who had control at my upstream ISP.

A non-NAT scheme depends - almost entirely - on my firewall not sucking. I try, but I have in the past screwed that up when changing rules and haven't realized it for days until something seems to be a bit wonky. My motto is if you can't get a packet to it, you can't attack it.

Comment Re:Just do it (Score 1) 544

Raising a big scene is exactly the wrong thing to do. Gets everybody worked into a pissing match. The correct answer is just to know your rights, assert them, and calmly call in bigger guns if really necessary.

And yes, I speak as someone who has raised the stakes with a rent-a-goon when I was being harassed on a public sidewalk. I called the real cops. They showed up, asked a few questions, and told the rent-a-goon to take a hike and learn that his authority ended at the edge of their property several hundred feet away.

I take any erosion of my photography rights very seriously, given the irrational paranoia society we've lived in here in the US for the last decade. I mean for fuck's sake, in the case above I was standing on a public sidewalk in broad daylight with a giant f'ing SLR (1Ds III and a 28-300L, which isn't a small combo for those who know their Canon gear). It's not like I'm trying to hide or be stealthy about anything, yet the rent-a-thug seemed to think I was some sort of imminent security threat.

Comment Thanks for the thousands of hours well wasted (Score 1) 1521

CmdrTaco - it's been a great fourteen years, and of the sites I started reading when the web really started exploding, /. is the only one of the original batch I check at least once a day (and sometimes just sit in the reload button, waiting on new stuff). You've provided millions of us with interesting reading and commentary, and built something (along with Hemos, CowboyNeal, Roblimo and all the other infamous editors of the past) that's acted as a common nerd meeting ground for years. Can't thank you enough for the thousands of hours of my own personal and my corporate overlord's time that this site has stolen. Best wishes for the future.

I remember trading emails with you back in 1998 or 99, when a group of us at Iowa State were trying to get slashcode to run on our machine. Eventually got it with some of your input, but mostly we were just honored that one of the internet's first nerd celebrities would actually respond and try to help. Ah, the good old days.

Comment Re:I like it (Score 1) 683

Dude, goal 1 and goal 2 are contradictory. If I write to a standard, it should be write and forget. Anything adhering to that standard should "just work". The point of standards is to provide interoperability and stability.

I believe exactly the opposite, and I call my model "don't break shit". I quite frankly couldn't care less if my html or java is technically correct yet doesn't work on the browsers of half my customers. It has to *work* first. If it fails that, I might as well have stayed at home watching internet porn, because the results would be just as productive for the business. Obviously I'm going to start with something standards compliant, but if I have to put in hacks to make it work everywhere, I will.

I haven't looked at the Moz plugin interface, but I (professionally) support a business logic library with 15+ years of cruft in there. Why? Because it's easier and cheaper for me to absorb all of that with versioned interfaces and the like than to break 100+ different classes of systems and force them all to make changes. I believe that interfaces should be versioned, you should have damn good reasons for breaking backwards compatibility, and if you do, you strongly consider providing X months/years of support for the deprecated one. Not everybody has the luxury of sitting around waiting for the latest version of X to break their code so they have something to entertain themselves.

Comment Re:Wow... (Score 1) 439

Likewise, I can't imagine anybody actually designing such an incredibly stupid clock. You've already got a rather accurate clock source to run the clock's micro (even if it's a ceramic resonator with a +/-0.5% accuracy, rather than a quartz crystal with accuracies in the ppm) or ASIC. It's extra parts to use zero crossings on the mains as a time reference, and these things are designed as cheaply as possible internally. For those devices using a separate realtime clock chip (VCRs, computers, etc.), I guarantee they don't give a rats ass about the mains frequency.

Old mechanical clocks using synchronous motors are doomed. Maybe some very early electronic clocks. 99.9% of modern gear will be just fine.

Comment Re:Canonical needs to be more careful (Score 1) 360

Unity bites ass. I tried it for a few days and found it to have exactly the same problem as the MS Office "Ribbon" crap - it was change for the sake of change when the old UI metaphor we've been using for decades worked just fine. (Yes, for those wondering, I use both Windows and Ubuntu, depending on what I'm trying to do.) It slowed me down, it annoyed me, and fortunately there were easy ways to make it bugger off.

Comment Re:Driverless cars: New hacking frontier (Score 1) 122

The car control computers are going to have to be doing what humans should be doing today - being situationally aware and discarding routes that conflict with direct observations. Just like a car shouldn't turn left into a pedestrian, it also shouldn't turn left into a bridge guardrail or off the pavement. GPS maps are going to have to be used for routing, and local, realtime sensors and vision algorithms are going to be needed for operation. It's just that rather than being biological, they'll be electromechanical.

Personally I love the stories about people who wind up in rivers and the like due to just following the GPS. Seriously, wake up and look the fuck around. Turns out water looks like water, and driving into large bodies of it is still stupid. It's not like Indiana Jones - there's no invisible bridge, I promise.

Comment Re:Driverless cars as verification testing (Score 1) 122

I'd say it'll take at least a couple decades to make the switch, given the ever-rising cost of cars, the longer finance cycles that most people are on, and the longer lifespan of modern vehicles. My two daily drivers are both 16+ years old, and I have no intention of getting rid of them any time soon. They're cheap to operate. My 2008 truck largely sits in the driveway, but when I need to move big stuff or drive through a blizzard, it's darn handy.

Actually that brings up a good point. Teaching a computer to drive on dry or even wet pavement is one thing. I'm waiting until somebody tries one of these self driving cars on black ice. They're both going to need to know what kind of surface they're on and what lies ahead of them within their stopping range.

Comment Re:How much lower could speeds go? (Score 3, Insightful) 122

Actually I'd agree. The average densely packed freeway moves at a rate and a following distance where pretty much the only choice in the event of anything bad happening is to plug the brakes. That causes a cascade effect, and you wind up with a slow spot that takes hours to dissipate. We need more space between vehicles and drivers trained to do something other than panic stop, or lower speeds to give people time to react more rationally. Or computerized drivers.

Goddammit, I sound like a fucking eco-hippie. I'm a single guy with six cars, four of which are purely for fun, and I'm arguing for lower speed limits. Actually, I guess I'm arguing for better drivers.

Personally, I wouldn't mind being able to hand control over to a computer in dense traffic, but I want control back when I exit onto surface roads or get out of congested freeway areas. I drive as much for the fun of it as to actually go anywhere.

Comment Re:Just for rioting? Seriously? (Score 2, Insightful) 397

No kidding - if one of those had been one of my cars, I'd be calling for blood. I like my stuff way more than I like 99.999% of humanity, and if you're one of the rioting whackjobs that thinks damaging other people's stuff without any provocation is acceptable, then I personally think you should be removed from society or possibly existence. I've never understood why people think property crimes are somehow trivial. My stuff represents an investment of my time and effort to acquire, and a lot of it has a lot of sentimental value to me. I'd feel personally violated if somebody just destroyed it.

Comment Re:No (Score 2) 298

Denyhosts is the bomb. Seriously, I get weeks where I used to get hammered with ssh login dictionary attacks. Now, denyhosts nicely bans them, and best of all, it can share back with a central server so once somebody starts attacking a couple people, we all ban their asses. It's one of the first things I install on any new server. Seriously, I think I'm going to go send the DH guys another donation because they're so damned awesome.

DH is ssh-centric, though. For your FTP problem, fail2ban is better.

Comment Re:Hydrogen (Score 1) 436

I'd say hydrogen, too, but in the fusion sense. Sure, it's not technically renewable, but fuck it, there's enough around to last us until the sun burns out. Once we get the first fusion plant going, it'll make more than enough energy to make the extraction of hydrogen self-sustaining.

Comment Mod parent up (Score 1) 337

Unless you're experimenting with some really, really interesting stuff at home, I'd strongly recommend looking through eBay for some slightly used Tektronix gear. I have a TDS420A that I picked up for just over $400, and it does everything I really need. (I do wish it had a USB port for saving screenshots - I hate keeping floppies around just for the scope.) Seriously, it's a great little scope. Save some cash and put it towards other gear, like a used programmable power supply, or a function generator, or a used logic analyzer. I've picked up some awesome gear on eBay dirt cheap - the trick is just keep watching and have patience.

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