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Comment Re:We need this (Score 3, Insightful) 201

we need people actively looking into making those new type of batteries instead of just researching them and never do anything with the research

You haven't been paying attention.

Like photovoltaic solar panels (which can now be had for under a dollar a watt WITHOUT subsidies, more than an order of magnitude improvement over the last decade or so), DEPLOYED battery technology has been improving, drastically.

Of course most of the breakthroughs don't get deployed. That's usually because better breakthroughs come along before they get that far.

Comment Re:Clean OS install (Score 1) 354

I use optical media for installs, too.

Mostly because they're a more convenient (and better supported than USB sticks) way to build a system onto a fresh(ly wiped) machine.

Also because they're an easy way to insure I didn't accidentally carry over any data from the pre-wipe configuration or the machine I used to download, or got hit with a "catch the machine before it updates" attack while net-loading or updating from the distribution version to the latest bugfixes. (I go to the net for the initial update through an external firewall machine with tight reach-out-only rules.)

Yes, it's not a defence against some of the NSA or "remote-administration feature" style of attacks, through the BIOS, drive firmware, CPU-vendor silicon "management engines", persistent threat malware on the download machine, etc. But it's a start. (Also: If those are any good they keep hiding, so at least they stay out of my way while I'm trying to get some work done. B-b )

Comment Re:Never that specific program (Score 1) 473

Don't forget to take the platter out and smash it up whichever way you want. If the NSA can get the data off a drive that's being zeroed several times and platter smashed up, they deserve a trophy.

Grind it into dust.

Smashing the platter helps some. But taking it out of the drive just saves them a step.

When a surface has been overwritten a couple times you're not going to have much luck trying to read it with the ordinary heads, even with tweaked signal and head-positioning electronics.

But a scanning magnetic-force microscope makes the last several layers of writing visible to the naked eye (observing the false-color image on a monitor or printed page).

Comment Re:Too secure for insecure? (Score 1, Interesting) 473

Hillary did do something wrong but the punishment for it would never be jail time. People keep focusing on this shouting lock her up. The worst she would have endured if she was a normal member of the state department would be a removal from her job and revocation of any security clearance.

And revocation of retirement benefits. And a felony conviction, with the resulting future denial of a number of civil rights (such as the right to posses a gun) and - yes - federal prison time.

Are you saying that the government would never enforce some of the more severe portions of the law? They seem to enforce it just fine when dealing with low-level functionaries (or even high-level officials who happen to be conservative.)

There is entirely too much corruption throughout our government.


We need to fix campaign finance in a big way.

Yes - by completely repealing any campaign finance legislation at any level.

Buying advertisement is political speech. That, even more than any other forms of speech, is precisely one of the rights that is recognized and protected by the First Amendment. (It just happens purchasing advertisements enables the "speaker" to talk to more people than he can by standing on a soapbox in the park.)

Campaign financing laws are bait-and-switch. They claim to level the playing field, blocking the deep-pocket guys and the incumbents from having an advantage over the ordinary citizens and upstart challengers. But they actually penalize the grass-roots organizers and challengers by imposing complex red tape and arcane limits and requirements with draconian penalties for non-compliance (which incumbents' and professional lobbying organizations already know how to handle - or have the financial backing to challenge in court).

They're incumbent protection laws. Which is exactly what you should expect them to be. They were written by incumbents.

Comment So you have to disclose it to the government (Score 1) 29

30.8 5G Provider Cybersecurity Statement Requirements.

(a) Statement. Each Upper Microwave Flexible Use Service licensee is required to submit to the Commission a Statement describing its network security plans and related information, ...

So the applicant has to publish his whole security architecture in order to get a license.

On one hand this conforms to the best practices recommendations of the security community: Expose the algorithm to analysis and keep the security in the keying secrets.

On the other hand this gives the government the opportunity to pick-and-chose only those systems it can break.

Oh, gee. Which way will it work?

Comment Same model NAME! (Score 1) 31

Latest phone supported is the international version of the Galaxy S III (I9300) ... Note: The U.S. version of Galaxy S III is a different motherboard and chip - the same model number on a different device.

The same model NAME on a different device. Model number is different, which is how you tell for sure you got the right one.

Comment One word: Replicant (Score 1) 31


Android. Fork of Cyannogen Mod that is fully Open source. Even the drivers and firmware. Latest phone supported is the international version of the Galaxy S III (I9300) (2G and 3G but no 4G LTE). (Note: The U.S. version of Galaxy S III is a different motherboard and chip - the same model number on a different device.)

Stable release is a couple years old (4.2) due to thinning of the development crew. But the project got new blood (post-Snowden) and a 6.0 port (for the 19300 so far) is in alpha.

Some devices (WiFI, Bluetooth, user-facing camera) require closed firmware, which you can load separately. (It's supported but not distributed with the base distribution.

Some (3-D graphics acceleration, GPS) are just not supported. (Use 2-D graphics and, if you really want your phone to know where you are, a plugin GPS device based on a different chip.) GPS is not supported because the phone's GPS chip also requires a proprietary CPU-land driver, which is an open-source no-no.

Comment I remember farther back. (Score 3, Interesting) 75

Sigh, I remember when Slashdot used to be a news place for Nerds and not this stupid political bull crap of pointing fingers at one another.

I remember farther back. (Note that I have two fewer digits in my I.D.)

It's always been like this. We may have a few more professional grass-roots trolls now that we have a couple orders of magnitude more eyeballs. But come politics season people's political leanings come out.

Face it: Politics IS "news for nerds" and "stuff that matters".

Comment And individuals should have no limits either. (Score 1) 75

Candidates have some limits, but PACs lost those restrictions in the suprime court ruling known as Citizens United.

And ordinary citizens shouldn't have limits for the same reasons - but didn't have the big pockets to argue that in court like the organized lobbyists do.

Campaign spending limits are a bait-and-switch. They pretend to level the playing field by cutting down the big spenders' power. But instead they block the grass-roots' influence - individually or when organizing - while leaving the rich able to circumvent them, and (by building a complex paperwork maze to navigate) give incumbent politicians a further massive advantage against upstart challengers.

What they're really about is helping those currently in power STAY in power.

Comment Re:$70K sounds pretty low (Score 1) 75

I don't claim to know any political internals, but $70,000 to get legislation that you basically write yourself passed sounds extremely low.

Part of the POINT of government corruption is that the cost is low compared to the benefits.

If using the money to actually build something consumers wanted to buy had a better return - and politicians didn't gate-keep and demand ransom ("rent-seeking behavior"), businesses wouldn't spend a dime bribing politicians - or at least those that did would be out-competed and driven out of business by those that didn't.

Politicians know this, and set their prices accordingly.

Comment Huh? (Score 1) 75

The more that ISPs seek to rewrite the rules in their favor, the more likely it is that the citizens will ignore those rules.

I give up. How do we ignore those rules?

Start our own ISPs - and get everything seized by the government for failing to play by their rules?

Hack the infrastructure - and get busted for "stealing service" or "unauthorized access to a computer system" - and get everything seized by the government, plus a felony conviction and the resulting revocation of constitutional rights for the rest of our lives?

Did you have something else in mind? I'm really confused about what you mean.

Comment The 1% told us that in the '60s and '70s, too. (Score 1) 676

Having children is a sociopathic act when we're overpopulated. At our current level of behavior, Earth is over its carrying capacity.

And we boomers have heard all that before. Back in the '60s and '70s the ruling class told us that we were about to be buried in a population explosion that would have us all starving in a toxic waste dump by the '90s and that technological improvements would only make it worse.

They even formed an organization called "The Club of Rome", which put together a computer model that cranked out these predictions.

So lots of responsible people held off on having kids - many until it was too late, even with major medical intervention. Enormous resources were diverted from production of material wealth to reduction of pollution. Costs went up, quality went down, resources were locked up, movement was restricted. Government power over everything, and the amount of money/value they pulled out of the economy grew and grew and grew. Anyone criticizing the paradigm or expressing a different view (especially a pro-technology view) was demonized - by activists, "leaders", and both the "establishment" and "underground" press.)

In the '50s, coming out of a depression and a World War, a family could live well supporting itself on a single income. Now it struggles with two or more full-time employed parents, or survives on a government dole. "There's a labor shortage!" - so the government imports more voters^H^H^H^H^H^H people from the more southern American countries to fill the blue collar jobs and from India, Aisia, and other places for the white-collar positions - and pretty much all of them from cultures where big families are the norm. So much for responsible self-population-limitation. (Think of it as evolution in action.)

But they made the mistake of publishing their software model. Computers got cheap, and programming became less of an arcane ritual practiced only by a tiny clique. Eventually skilled programmers took a look at the model - and found both flaws and gimmicks apparently designed to make it produce the gloom-and-doom, empower-governments, we're all going to freeze in the dark but that's better than extinction, predictions.

And the time came and went. And the disaster didn't happen. And technological improvements made things better, not worse. (And not just because of pollution controls: It turns out that pollution is INEFFICIENT, and as the cost of process control technology comes down and capabilities go up, reducing it can INCREASE PROFIT!)

So the "population bomb" turned out to be a dud. (But a convenient one for the rich and powerful, making them more rich and powerful.) And looking back at history we saw that this was just the latest in a long string of such operations:
  1. Predict disaster.
  2. Get everyone panicked.
  3. Increase power and control to "take action to head off the disaster".
  4. PROFIT!
Over and over and over again.

And then came "global warming" (replacing "here comes the next ice age".) Complete with computer models and lots of "scientific data" - from government scientists funded by billions from agencies that somehow only gave follow-on grants to scientists who predicted doom (or made some tie-in to global warming in research on non-climate-related subjects).

THIS time, though, they kept the raw data and models to themselves, handing out only conclusions and "adjusted" data. And after YEARS of digging, some outside the peer-review cliques found some evidence that the adjustments always seemed to increase the signal of warming, possibly by enough to create it out of nothing (or even out of measurements indicating global COOLING), and that this may have been deliberate.

But instead of opening the data to all, it was (and is) STILL kept largely hidden (or claimed to be lost), while a propaganda effort is raised against anyone questioning the conclusions, or the race to take over resources and wealth, and increase control of the general population, to "fix" this "disaster".

It all looks very familiar. "Fool me once shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me." So expect skepticism from those of us who lived through the "environmental movement".

Maybe this new result IS a convincing signal. It sure LOOKS like one. But the "Hockey Stick" graph looked like one, too. (Very much like this one in fact.)

Any such results will need to be examined, and found to be completely open, honest, and based on a well-designed methodology, before even those of us who are truly interested in what's REALLY happening to the Earth, but got bitten by a previous pseudo-science movement, are convinced.

Meanwhile, there are a LOT of steps between "It looks like things might be warming up a tad since the Industrial Revolution." and "The government has to take over everything RIGHT NOW or WE'RE ALL GOING TO DIE!"

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It is masked but always present. I don't know who built to it. It came before the first kernel.