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Comment The fault lies.... (Score 2) 230

Completely at the feet of the banks. They needed to get off their asses and spend a tiny bit of their immense profits to fucking switch over. The banks could send every retailler a new chip reader for every register for free and STILL make record profits every quarter.

So blame the Banks and the Greedy assholes that run those banks.

I'm for bringing back all the heavy handed bank regulation from before 1980. Fuck the bankers.

Comment Re:Lack of anonymity (Score 1) 135

There is no perfect system (nirvana fallacy) and your discussion does not compare the advantages and disadvantages of each system, and instead arrives at a conclusion based on listing disadvantages. Voters can already be intimidated and provide proof of their vote with MMS, or any of the myriad photo-sharing apps, many of which are now providing end-to-end encryption.

Not the way paper ballots are done here in Norway at least. You pick a ballot, fold it double so your vote is on the inside but they all look identical on the outside. Then you go outside the booth to get a stamp, not really sure why and then put it in the ballot box. You can of course film yourself picking up the "right" ballot, but you won't be allowed to film your actual placing of the vote. Nothing can stop you from putting the ballot back and picking another one before stepping outside.

The elimination of the voter being able to prove how they voted through official documentation removes the voter's ability to perform an audit of their own vote's tabulation. Voters uncovering elections fraud outweighs the very small (non-existent? - provide a link to cases of these claims, ever? Appeal to probability much?) vote-buying instances.

Outright buying maybe not, peer pressure hell yeah. In this family we vote [party] or all your friends showing off their [party] votes, if you don't show yours you can bet they'll assume it's for [other party] and you'll get punished/teased/blackmailed for it. I think you forget that leaving people will proof would lead to a lot of people sharing and showing off that proof and making life difficult for those who "have something to hide".

Comment Re:Could this account for the missing mass? (Score 2) 69

And how does dark matter explain this? If you cant prove it even exists?

Dark matter is not an explanation, it's a placeholder. What we've observed is a gravitational pull we can't explain, to which there are three possible explanations:

1) Our formula for gravity is wrong
2) There is matter of known types we haven't detected
3) There is one or more unknown types of matter at play

We've looked hard at modifying the theory of gravity but all the proposed modifications cause it to fail other results that are correct today. So assuming the formula is correct, we can estimate how much mass is "missing" and we label this dark matter. And then search the particles we know to see what other effects they'd have, to get some upper bound on how much of the dark matter it is. And then we find it doesn't add up to 100%, not even close. Most explanations rush this part and go right to all the potential candidates for what the rest is.

So we've found more of the traditional matter, that's neat. We know it's out there, we don't know exactly where and how much. But we know it's not enough to explain everything, not in the places it needs to be. I'm not sure how to explain it in a good way, it's like proving that you can't go to the moon with a horse and carriage. It's not about how many horses there are, there could be an infinite number to give you infinite horsepower and it still wouldn't work. You need a different kind of propulsion. Same way with dark matter, no matter how much traditional matter you add it doesn't work. You need something else.

Comment Re:Alternate Headline (Score 1) 59

With HDDs you could access individual sectors and zap em as appropriate. With SSDs that's not the case. Everything is logically mapped by a controller and you have to trust it to do a secure erase properly - either resetting the encryption key or filling every block (even the ones used for over-provisioning) with 0s.

It's been a long, long time since you could do that. All modern HDDs do sector remapping behind the scenes, whatever written to a sector the disk later identifies as wonky and remaps is untouchable. Only secure erase will overwrite every sector, it predates SSDs by many years.

Comment The 90s called and want their cyberspace back (Score 2) 44

Remember when tech pundits were talking like the Internet would transcend to become it's own nation that people would emigrate to and live in? Well shit turns out we still live in meatspace with countries and laws. And surprise, surprise so does our data. The cloud is just the new buzzword for the same concept without the people. I suppose companies will try to go jurisdiction shopping, but I doubt they'll succeed. The governments of the world will set requirements for dealing with their citizen's data and you'll either comply or get in legal trouble, like the EU's "right to be forgotten". Yes, it means data on the Chinese might stay in China but it might also mean data on US citizens stay in the US. Would you really like them to swap? Or do you just want to fulfill the NSAs wet dream that all data on everyone in the whole world go through the US? Seriously, for most of us local data is a good thing.

Comment Re:Apropos of nothing... (Score 1) 56

Apropos of nothing... Just how hard is it to disable one of these $600,000 mobile golf carts? For example, can a high powered rifle pierce any of the antennas, control electronics, or motive hardware? Would an IED be sufficient? And having done so, what dangers might the recovery team face?

The US got massively superior firepower if they can just locate the enemy. And they won't be medics in a hurry because he's bleeding out. Taking out one of these would be announcing to the world here I am, come kill me. And you got them to reveal themselves without putting any soldiers at risk. And if they're plagued with hit and run attacks they can set an ambush of their own like a hidden sniper covering the patrol area or a squad that'll cut them off from behind. And you could probably make dumb decoys for a fraction of the cost for the enemy to waste their time on if they actually start attacking them.

Sure, some of these might be destroyed but what would be the cost of human patrols, with their armored vehicle and high end gear? If the enemy has high powered rifles and IEDs they could do damage to non-drone equipment and injure or kill soldiers too. Ultimately it's a matter of resources, if the US can get them to waste their sniper rifles and IEDs on non-human targets it's pretty much a win no matter what. It's dead soldiers that zaps the will to fight, the military industry and their lobby will make sure money is not a problem.

Comment Re:So make it equally first amendment to block the (Score 2) 168

So make it equally first amendment to block them. My phone line does not have to accept every call made to it.

This. I should be able to set up a "EULA" on my phone, my mailbox, my email account and whatever else communication channel I have indicating what forms/groups/types of contact I will accept. Anyone wishing to contact me would have to self-certify that they belong to a category I'll accept. Then you can make it an offense to lie, just like on immigration forms.

Comment Re:What's with all the cheap video cards? (Score 1) 41

Car analogy time:
Someone who only cares about performance? We call those race drivers. Someone who only wants a solid car to drive often? Taxi driver. Car enthusiasts/nerds will probably have some oddball car polished and styled in top condition and spend an inordinate amount of time keeping it that way. That said, most of them don't want a broken transmission. It's not the sort of thing you casually tinker with, it's very basic functionality that has to work. Fixing it yourself would be very nerdy but it's for a special few. I have the feeling OS/driver issues are the same for computer nerds, most want that part to work so they can be nerds on a different level. It's not exactly like a kernel panic makes me want to be a kernel developer...

Comment Re:Yes, deleted files are (sometimes) recoverable (Score 2) 59

writing once is enough. It's an urban myth that you have to do it more than once to obliterate the data. Manybe with old 10megabyte RLL and MFM drives you could easily recover information as the head was miles wide and the slop from the track move was insane enough that you cna easily see it. bot for the past 10 years a single wipe of zeros will make it impossible for the worlds best hackers to read the data on a modern hard drive.

Comment Re: Ionizing radiation linked to circulatory disea (Score 2) 156

That is easy to get a larger sample.

Pack all the politicians in Congress and who are currently running for positions and launch them into space. We can check on them in a few years.

Plus it will solve a HUGE problem down here at the same time.... It's a WIN-WIN!

Comment Re:Nothing of value was lost (Score 2) 39

You're missing the bigger picture -- whether Usenet itself is dead or not, the fact that we're replacing open protocols with closed, proprietary web interfaces controlled by a single entity is a huge regression. Replacing Usenet with 8 million different web forums that I have to register with individually and use a different interface to read is not an improvement.

Well the nice things about web forums is that they can set their own terms for registration, moderation, user behavior and so on and if people don't like it they can move to a different one. Newsgroups kinda worked so long as bandwidth was a scarce resource and you wouldn't just waste it needlessly. You had moderated groups but that was very rudimentary and not very popular, but the rest was just open season for spam and trolls and bots. Without changing signup captchas to keep mass signups at bay most forums would be nothing but trash. Same thing about email, once the spammers got hold of it you'd see an endless number of trash emails.

Unfortunately applying the same rules uniformly more or less means you have to have one entity controlling it all, it's no good if I have a strict policy and you allow every rabble in. Same thing with who gets moderator privileges or moderator points, any form of assignment or formula needs someone controlling it. I suppose you could have a somewhat decentralized organization like IRC networks, where some servers belong to the same network and some don't all while running the same protocol, but still. To be honest, I don't think the market wants more protocols since most everything now runs over HTTP, almost totally regardless of what it is. At best maybe you could make some kind of HTTP "API" so you could use different messaging software but I doubt it. Most sites actually like being in control of layout and such.

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