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Comment Day Late and Dollar Short (Score 1) 167

While I am certainly a supporter of having an open system where you might actually be able to buy a decent DVR that wasn't designed in 2003, I really think that they have missed the boat. People are cutting the cord left and right (I just did tonight as a matter of fact). With all of the content available online, why do we even need a dedicated STB with software decryption. Hell, Time Warner even has a Roku app that is free and gives you ALMOST all of their programming (and depending on your market even local channels). Sure a DVR would be nice but content is also On Demand online if you have a subscription. This would have been great in lieu of the CableCard but I think it is severely late to the game at this stage.

Comment Re:Not Normally Connected (Score 1) 166

OK. I'll give that to you. It's a valid point. You certainly see much more use of Fusion and RMS (Managment Tools) in the Corporate environment. Again, I wasn't trying to defend the action as much as defend the company. I do like their products and the team. It's a security hole. I should have chosen a better title for my post.

Comment Re:Not Normally Connected (Score 2) 166

Well, it doesn't make me happy. But I don't know why a customer wouldn't trust ME. I've now got to make sure that if we have these systems are connected to the network at installed facilities that they get a firmware update. That's part of service. With the initial release of the NX series processors, they discovered a 50 day lockup bug. That was corrected in firmware as well. We had to update those processors affected. That's just part of service. When your vehicle has a recall do you send it to the heap and never go back to the same dealer? Do you turn off updates on your computer and just switch operating systems when a security flaw is found? You've asked an ignorant question AC.

Comment Not Normally Connected (Score 5, Interesting) 166

I'm an AMX programmer (and Crestron as well). I can tell you that A LOT of the time the A/V LAN is a completely separate system that isn't physically connected to the house network. But that is no excuse for leaving a backdoor. Of the two major competitors in commercial control (AMX and Crestron), AMX is usually considered the most secure. They put a high focus on security so that they can land these government jobs. Just to give you some background, Crestron controllers currently run embedded Windows and previously ran VxWorks. AMX controllers previously ran VxWorks and now run Embedded Linux. The AMX controllers have many levels of security including a DoD mode which shuts down most of the services (FTP, web, telnet and leaves SSH). Their proprietary communication between the panel and the controller (carried over port 1319 and registered) is also encrypted in secure mode (this generally carries button presses, text updates, levels, etc.). Sounds to me like the engineers didn't want to give up the backdoor account for service issues once it was discovered and likely didn't realize what a big mistake it was by the time it got passed down. I've met most of the people at AMX and they are very good guys and gals. It's an engineering driven company (not marketing driven). The Harman acquisition may change that to some extent but they are true geeks who I am sure realize they messed up. It's a small company (aside from the Harman parent) in a niche market. They will learn from this and move on.

Submission + - Astronauts' Hearts Change Shape in Space (sciencemag.org)

sciencehabit writes: Astronauts who go into space come back with rounder hearts. Scientists who had astronauts regularly take images of their hearts with ultrasound machines found that the organ becomes more spherical in space by a factor of 9.4%. The researchers believe the change in shape, which is temporary, indicates that the heart is performing less efficiently in zero gravity.

Comment What is with this anti-readability trend? (Score 2) 100

So, I was logged in and didn't get to see the beta so I just checked it out. I have to ask something. Why oh why has light grey on lighter-grey become the new trendy style for UI? Do people no longer wish to be able to read the shit that is on a page and just mindlessly stare at a whitewashed screen? You do realize that some contrast is OK right? There is a reason that people use black type on paper. The Kindle isn't coming out with a light grey on white version to make it cooler. Fuck! It was bad enough when I first opened my iOS 7 mail on my company iPhone. Now I have to see the same shit mimicked on the last semi-intelligent website on the internet? First Yahoo fucks up my homepage that I've been using for the last decade and now Slashdot has to go and screw up my favorite website since 90's. Damn you guys! Keep this shit readable! New for the sake of "new" is not better!

Comment Same situation here! (Score 1) 324

I'm in almost the exact same situation as you. What is worse is that I only live in a 10 home sub-division. We have all tried to commission Time Warner who is right on the main road but they keep saying no. I believe they will do it if we pay them and even informally quoted us at some point (several thousand or tens of thousands of dollars if I recall). It's very frustrating to be able to practically see the line from my house and not be able to tap into it. We just moved here so to say that going from 50Mbps on TW or WOW (both in my previous area) to 5Mbps on a good day through Centurylink is frustrating is an understatement. Luckily I packaged with DirecTV for one year to get the fantastic deal of $30/month for the internet portion. Next year it goes to $60/month. $60/month for 5Mbps down and 0.5Mbps up! Now THAT is a monopoly!

Comment Don't get frustrated (Score 2) 823

I believe a lot of this comes from frustration of the environment. Fellow employees/students that simply do not agree with you, nor understand what you do and who you are. A lot (maybe most) of SMART people are horribly introverted and poor communicators. Have you ever had to give tech support and got more and more angry as the conversation continued? Have you ever had to explain yourself rather than just saying, "I'm right. Go look it up." A lot of people simply give up, go in their corner and code/develop/engineer. You appear to be one step ahead in that you are already self-aware. Not everybody is built the same. Try not to get frustrated and realize that not everybody has the same genetic makeup and education as you do. But that doesn't make you better. It just means you are talented in your area of expertise. Make sure that reflects respect and not contempt.

Comment It's called a cherry-picked CATV System (Score 1) 539

We do it all the time in schools and it is really easy. First, choose how many channels you want to modulate through the facility. Let's say 10 for the sake of discussion. You would then get 10 cable boxes. You would run these cable boxes into multiple modulators then through a combiner and out to the rest of the system. Each TV can tune to any of the 10 stations you selected. If you need to modify one of the channels (2-10), simply re-tune the cable box. Blonder Tongue has a plethora of modulators, demodulators, and converters to suite your needs. I would use the MICM-45 modulators http://www.tonercable.com/index.php?id=3&ProdID=229. They go into a chassis (MIRC-12V) w/ a power supply (MIPS-12C) and you can house up to 12 in 2 Rack units.

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