Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 Internet speed test! ×

Comment It's not that simple (Score 1) 89

In defense of those 'misusing' the word, the line between the two is thin and blurry in a lot of cases both historical and current. Hackers have always had a tendency to at least bend the rules in pursuit of knowledge. Only in the world of computers do we differentiate people who break into your computer by their intentions. We don't have white hat burglars or white hate rapists, but white hat hackers will sure as hell download your credit card details, 'to prove they can'.

Comment Nope (Score 1) 113

No, it isn't, at least not without really exceptional leadership.

Linus holds himself to exceptionally high standards of work, standards which he expects everyone else who commits to the kernel to also adhere to. He's also a complete and total asshole and will think nothing of publicly chastising anyone who doesn't. Self Organisation works for the Linux kernel because for one, only the very best of the best are actually allowed commit privileges and for another anyone who fucks up or gets slack will be caught and will be punished. This means that the people self organize to do the right things.

Debian doesn't write software, at least not much anyway, so they don't really count in the same way. I'd also hazard the guess that the core of Debian is actually rather tightly organised with package maintainers largely being self organised.

Comment Re:Congratulations! (Score 1) 284

That's a rather broad statement to make.

You're correct in that the founding fathers wrote the constitution to restrict the power of government, not that of private individuals, and for that matter mostly to restrict the power of the federal government. The issue however is the fact they didn't go to all the trouble of restricting the government's power to restrict free speech because they were anti-government, they did so because they though free speech was critical to a free society. They also explicitly set up a strong central government to protect the people. I'm not by any means convinced that the Founding Fathers would be at all comfortable with this kind of thing.

Comment Re:Bad Analogy (Score 1) 357

Yes of course, I can do that, you can probably do that too, most people however can't, or won't.

That's not even talking about things like borrowing money or earning interest, though I guess given that Bitcoin is destructively deflationary no one would do either of those things with Bitcon, but folks do like to do that stuff with functional currencies.

Comment Re:Bad Analogy (Score 1) 357

Yes, setting up a wallet is really easy. Setting that wallet up in such a way that it doesn't get emptied by malware or lost due to hardware failures is a whole different ball game. That's not even touching on setting it all up so you can do all that while still having the ability to pay for things with bitcoins when your not at your computer.

Keeping a private Bitcoin wallet is exactly like keeping your cash under the mattress in terms of risk, and it's simultaneously less portable. Bitcoin proponents think that we only use banks because of the convenience of things like ATMs and wire transfers, and that's certainly a part of it, but people have been using banks for just about as long as there has been money, nothing in Bitcoin's architecture removes the reasons banks were set up in the first place, that's why exchanges cropped up as pseudo banks to begin with, because there was a market need. The difficulty is that they were like the old Savings and Loans only more incompetent.

Comment Re:Bad Analogy (Score 2) 357

If it were just the exchange failing, that might not be a problem, but when the exchanges are, for all intents and purposes, either seizing assets from their customers or losing those assets to theft left right and center, it sure as hell does affect Bitcoin.

Keeping a private wallets require a degree of know how which is beyond most tech savy people, let alone regular folks, exchanges(banks) are as necessary to the Bitcoin ecosystem as they are to cash. When the banks can't be trusted and can't be prosecuted, the ecosystem and therefor the currency itself is hopelessly broken.

Comment Re:Architecturally Insecure (Score 2) 116

And for a desktop, no one gives a crap.

Everything that matters to a user is sitting in folders that they can, by necessity, access. Your documents, your web browser session, and everything else that is even remotely important to you is available with no escalated privileges whatsoever. Yes they can't necessarily root your device,but to be honest, but unless you're actually running in a true multi user environment(which almost no desktop is), it's cold comfort that your PC works if you data is gone.

Comment Re:Architecturally Insecure (Score 0) 116

It was probably much more recently, but he probably installed XP without any patches or service packs. That's how the YotLD people convince themselves they're going to win, they compare bleeding edge Linux products against XP and talk about how much more advanced Linux is.

That said there is some truth in the fact that most Linux installations are architecturally more secure than most Windows PC's, but that has more to do with the fact that the market share for Linux installed PC's running as general purpose computing devices configured to be used by non technical end users is barely measurable. Servers don't count(most Windows servers don't have AV either), tablets don't count(though I actually do have AV on my android), locked down box set up for your parents that your remotely administer doesn't count.

I'd also like to point out that in this day and age, the fact that you probably won't get root on Linux is a big who cares, all the data which matters to the user is accessible by the user. Setting up data encryption ransom ware on Linux would be trivially easy and no less damaging than on Windows.

Comment Re:Clickbait (Score 1) 312

I've never been convinced that you actually need your manager to have direct technical skills, certainly not extensive ones. They need enough knowledge to spot bullshit, but if a manager has really good people and leadership skills then the technical people who work for them will take care of the technical.

The issue of course is that people with really great people and leadership skills don't stay long in middle management. Middle management is basically the realm of horror. Any technical skills people in there have atrophy because they spend all day not being technical and if they had good management skills they'd have gotten out.

Slashdot Top Deals

Stinginess with privileges is kindness in disguise. -- Guide to VAX/VMS Security, Sep. 1984