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Comment WiFi (Score 2) 285

I backup my iMac to a Time Capsule over WiFi. It happens to be located in my home, but it could just as well be next door, wouldn't make a difference. So if your neighbour is what we city dwellers think "neighbour" means and not "the next ranch ten miles down the river", that might work.

So basically, get a WiFi-enabled harddrive. Or a WiFi router with a USB port. Initial backup via USB or whatever, and incremental updates are usually small enough that they can happen in the background. On the Mac that's built-in, I'm sure there's software for Linux and maybe that hobby OS from Redmond a few people here use.

Comment Re:What could have been done? (Score 1) 30

So after I showed that your claims don't actually reflect reality

Not even you could possibly believe that. I rebutted, very specifically, every single claim you made. Not a single claim you made against what I've written has been left standing, from your opening falsehood that 2 hours was insufficient time, to your final falsehood that three hours passed between attacks, and everything in between.

you then dedicate a post to lying about me rather than actually approaching facts

Again, you don't even believe any of that. I made no such post, and I am the one presenting the facts, while you're the one trying to twist the few facts told to you -- by me -- into a story that might possibly (but doesn't) work in your favor.

Comment Re:What could have been done? (Score 1) 30

My favorite part about this is how damn_registrars pretends to actually have a grasp of the facts, but he knows nothing about that night except for the headlines. Until today, he didn't know anything about the second assault on the annex, didn't know the total length of time of the attacks, and so on, yet he is here pretending that he has sufficient facts to disprove your assertion. It's pathetic.

Comment Re:What could have been done? (Score 1) 30

Why should they have expected another attack to take place at a different location some three hours later?

Um. Why would the attackers stop attacking them just because they left the consulate? The attackers were there explicitly to kill them, not just to scare them.

First of all, Al Qaeda is not the only organization that flies black flags.

Um. So? These were not random black flags, these were the black flags of al Qaeda, as I said. You're not making any sense.

Second, when they do fly them it does not mean every time they are about to launch an attack

Um. So? My point was that the attackers were flying the al Qaeda flag.

Third, if they were flying them everywhere in the region then that makes it really hard to predict where defense against them is needed.

No, it's actually very simple, because they said what they were going to attack. You can say that makes them not-good terrorists, but them telling us where they were going to attack didn't seem to stop them, so ...

You said yourself the distance between the attacks was only about a mile, and that some three hours passed between the attacks. Why would they expect another attack to happen after that much time had passed?

I didn't say three hours passed between attacks. You incorrectly inferred that. I said the final assault began around then. The attacks on the annex actually began hours before.

And now were back to insults.

Yes, more feigned offense. You really think anyone believes that me insulting you for lying about me is somehow worse than you lying about me?

Look, the facts are clear:

* There was time and information sufficient to get more troops in there earlier and possibly save more American lives and take more terrorists (dead or alive)
* You don't know the facts at all, as I had to tell you some very basic and well-understood facts about what happened, and you said some very obviously false things about it, which means your initial assertions that there was insufficient opportunity to save them were based on significant ignorance
* You lied about me, saying I would have opposed Obama had he sent in troops, most likely to deflect attention away from the fact that you had no good arguments against the facts
* You pretended that I was the one breaching civility when I called you on your lies

And not only is this all clear to us, but it's also clear to us that it's clear to you, too.

Comment Re:Off road and off ground ... (Score 2) 26

Not sure about the US, but I've had the pleasure of starting from the private/business departure area on my local airport, and it doesn't compare with the regular airport, it's an entirely different world. No security theatre, no waiting and sitting around, you arrive, go through the lobby, on the tarmac, into the plane, take-off. Total time spent on airport: 10 minutes at most.

Being able to skip the lines and security theatre and waiting and boarding is easily worth it all by itself.

Comment Re:What could have been done? (Score 1) 30

That is two separate buildings, though. Do you have evidence that they knew promptly after the attack on the first building that an attack on the annex was imminent?

Not offhand, but it doesn't matter. Well before 4 a.m. (before 1:30), almost all (if not all) living Americans from the consulate were at the annex, having been rescued from there by a small rescue team (two special ops, five security contractors, from what I can tell) from Tripoli. The personnel were asking for protection and evacuation from Benghazi. If the administration had been able to mobilize a larger force, they still likely would have had plenty of time, and certainly would have had sufficient information, to get to the annex. They were there for nearly three hours before the 4 a.m. attack.

If they had gotten to the CIA annex in under six hours -- a very plausible amount of time to get from Italy or somewhere else we've got troops close by -- two Americans (Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods) could be alive today

That only makes sense if they had a reason to go there and had such a reason in time to act upon it.

Setting time aside, you're not really making a case. They were attacked a mile away. They were rescued and retreated through the streets to the annex. On what planet would they have NOT thought they were still a target?

Keep in mind that they all knew by this time they were being attacked by al Qaeda. The black flag of al Qaeda was flown everywhere in the region, they were credibly threatened just a few months before that they would be attacked, and then they were attacked, seeing those same black flags.

(On the credible threat -- which is not the point of this discussion, I know, but just to round it out -- al Qaeda said they would first attack the British consulate, then the Red Cross, then the American consulate ... and they had already attacked the Brits and Red Cross. They knew an attack was almost certainly coming. This was far more specific and credible and actionable than that supposedly damning PDB that told Bush that someone at some point might possibly fly a plan into a building. This is my best guess as to why Obama lied for so long about the cause of the attack, because they really did very clearly drop the ball on this.)

What characteristics of the first attack gave indication that a second attack would be launched soon on a separate building?

The fact that the terrorists clearly knew where they were (the evacuation through the streets was not covert), clearly were out to kill Americans (due to the known threats etc.), and there was no reason to think they would not continue their attack.

If we had sent troops from Italy as soon as we had information on the first attack, and no second attack was launched, you would be criticizing the president for being heavy handed. After all, President Lawnchair had told us we would not have "boots on the ground" in Libya, right? You would just be criticizing him for breaking another promise, regardless of what the outcome would have been.

You're lying.

When Obama said is that there would be no boots on the ground, he was not speaking in the context of a specific attack on American personnel, in which case I expect -- as almost all Americans do -- that he will do whatever it takes to rescue them. When I criticized Obama for violating the War Powers Resolution in Libya, it was in the context of a total lack of an attack on Americans (nor any specific congressional authorization), and thus he had no authority to use the military, boots on the ground or not. But in this situation, he very clearly had that authority under the War Powers Resolution. It's not even an issue, and neither is his "promise," which was made under a completely different context.

There is no response that he could have possibly authorized in response that would have satisfied you.

Not only you are you a liar, but you're a coward. I show you what could have been done, and knowing you cannot criticize my points directly very well, you choose instead to make up lies about how I wouldn't want him to do what I say.

And you wonder why no one takes you seriously.

Comment the fail is in dumbing everything down (Score 1) 663

Kids are not stupid, and challenging them is part of what school is about.

The moron whou thought a whole sentence was beyond the comprehension of a school-age child deserves to be flogged and fired. He's part of the problem.

Finding the math problem in a text problem was one of the most valuable lessons I remember from my early school days. Mostly because in the real world, you will encounter many more text problems than "1+2 = ?" ones.

The problem with dumbing-down is that necessarily information gets lost. The first is tone and texture. For an example, compare just the introduction of the articles on "love" in Wikipedia, in regular english and in simple english.
There's just a lot of depth lost in the simple english.

But if you dumb down even more, then meaning starts to get lost. For example, the fact that love is an interpersonal emotion is not mentioned in simple english. You probably didn't notice because we all know what love is (more or less), so we add missing information without noticing. But someone who doesn't know can't do that, and so the aliens in Tau Ceti who get a copy of Wikipedia won't understand a lot about love from the simple english article.

We're living in a world where everything is getting dumbed down. Mostly for profit reasons (more audience if more people understand it), but also for misunderstood benevolence reasons. If you know anything about people, you never dumb something down to their level, ever. If you want to do them good, you dumb it down to slightly above their level, so they can understand it and grow at the same time. You never remove the challenge completely, because we humans, like all animals, are lazy by nature and won't extend effort unless we have to.

And if you want to make absolutely sure that someone understands a question, you need to add information, not remove it. The more terse a package of information is, the more effort the receiver has to make to extract the information from it, unless it was carefully crafted to make extraction easy.
That is true for both compression and prose (the famous "sorry that this letter is so long, I didn't have time to write a short one" line - creating a short and yet informative package is quite a bit of work).

Comment Re:What could have been done? (Score 1) 30

Even if we departed from a base near Rome, Italy it would be more than 2 hours by air, that is is ignoring the amount of time to load the plane with the relevant materials for the fight.

DC was notified at 10 p.m. local time. The final assault was launched at 4 a.m., when mortars were dropped onto a building in the CIA annex, killing two Americans.

Quite simply, the window of time for the attack was too short for President Lawnchair to have been able to authorize counter action and have it effectively change the outcome.

Obviously false. If they had gotten to the CIA annex in under six hours -- a very plausible amount of time to get from Italy or somewhere else we've got troops close by -- two Americans (Navy SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods) could be alive today, and we'd have more justice done to the killers of Ambassador Christopher Stevens and information officer Sean Smith.

Comment Re:Great... (Score 1) 520

Sorry, but they've already solved this the other way:

You'll be brought into a smal cabin, get a full-body-scan, then you'll have to undress, get a cavity search and then you'll be issued a state-owned Burka to wear for the rest of your trip.

Comment Re:Screening areas as terrorist targets (Score 1) 520

Attacking waiting points for security lines is a time honored practice in some parts of the world, the only surprising thing is that it took this long for it to occur here.

"took"? It's still waiting to happen. The moron killed 1 person. In a target-rich environment, with a rifle in your hand, you'd have to be a half-blind to not kill at least three people before the area is clear - if that was your target. But then again, you'd se a bomb or a hand-grenade.

This guy was not out to randomly kill as many people as possible, this was not a terrorist attack.

Comment Re:and back to your regularly scheduled conspiracy (Score 1) 46

So you admit that you said they called you a liar.

Of course I did. And of course, they did.

In other words, you were being literal.

They literally, though not explicitly, called me a liar. Yes.

You didn't say they said you were like a liar or suggesting you were lying, you said directly that they called you a liar.

Yes. They did.

Except, of course, they didn't.

False.

I agree that your excuses were not adequate

Shrug. You're incorrect.

In fact it appears at this point that you are alone in your assertion of your excuses being adequate.

Well, it is me versus no one, so ...

Plus, I've already provided the evidence.

Comment Re:And there's a whole series of comments at Ars.. (Score 1) 245

Not with powerline. But you are underestimating the power of side-channel attacks. There's proof of concept code out there to send messages via timing difference in CPU cache access speed. Getting data across the power line without special hardware is certainly daunting, but not necessarily impossible. It was worth the 5 minutes it took to rule it out.

Comment Re:Or... (Score 1) 8

But those are two completely different types of belief. On one we have a values belief, which is hard to falsify, and is often even maintained despite falsification. That's human nature. But this is about simple facts of things that happened, which don't affect their values in any way. It only affects their narrative, hence the deception.

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