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Comment Re:This simply means we're succeeding. (Score 1) 85

I don't disagree with your math, but an article on NewAtlas TODAY extols a claim from a German company that they are going to build a car with 7.5 m^2 of 22% efficient polycrystalline solar cells covering its flattish surfaces, with a 14.5 kW-H internal battery, that will get at least 30 km/day from normal ambient (unobstructed, sure) sun. Their so-far rendered image of a car looks like a smallish four seater commuter car. They also CLAIM that they will sell this for $14 to $16K USD.

I'm skeptical -- but if the DO manage this, it would make a hell of a car for my in-town driving. Basically buy it and then use it without fuel for the rest of its useful life, because I don't drive 30 km/day on average, even including runs to stores as well as work. I'm not sure it would be a good "only car", but it would sure take the pressure off of my 4Runner (needed to pull a boat and for trips but overkill for daily commuting).

The point being that there may be "specialty cars" that can actually function as solar cars for limited length commutes. The ELF (made in Durham NOW, as opposed to dreaming-ware like the car in the new atlas article) could almost do it, if you could hook it up to a few square meters of panel this efficient, but it isn't really a "car", it is more of an electric enhanced tricycle with a tarp-like cover and a bit of storage. But for $6000, one could add the solar panels and a system to accumulate enough charge at home in a day to keep it charged for standard commutes, if it were really road safe (IMO it's not, quite).


Comment Re:Microsoft Update Catalog is my new hero (Score 1) 210

What I'm saying is: this is a valuable attack surface for someone building a botnet. If most people use the GUI, then it won't matter that the scripts are clean if the GUI is dirty (obviously, just because a window that looks like a command prompt running scripts is displayed, that means nothing if it's all presented by the GUI).

There have been attempts to hijack Linux distros before, and hijacking Windows update is a key prize.

Comment Re:Not a bad guess (Score 1) 163

Fungi it the great unknown. It could be as much as 25%. It's hard to find a good overall breakdown, even of just plankton.

What's scary is that among mammals, and land-based verterbrates overall, humans and their domestic animals are the majority of the biomass.

Yes, but my whole point is that's like 0.01% of biomass. Don't confuse the familiar with the important.

Add our machines, which an order of magnitude more active than we are.

Crops are similar, though they go the other way with oxygen. But even at 10x, it's still a rounding error.

Comment Re:Microsoft Update Catalog is my new hero (Score 1) 210

The attacker assured me "the GUI is really just a front end for some scripts". The attacker assured me the screen I see is "a standard command prompt where you can simply look at the screen and see its just calling the MSFT update servers".

This is the risk here. Has it been audited by security professionals? Do they have a process in place to discover that their code repo was hacked? The same applies to Linux distros, of course, where there have been issues (though few have been discovered).

To be fair, they're probably as secure as the MS bits they're built on, but still it's overall a sorry state of affairs.

Comment Re:IoA (Score 3, Informative) 113

That would be well and fine if most IPv6 addresses didn't have a 64-bit or even 80-bit prefix, identical for everything routable at the endpoint.

That 64-bit network prefix is the equivalent of 4 billion entire IPv4 internets—and each "host" in each of those internets contains its very own set of 2**32 IPv4 internets in the 64-bit suffix. Quadrupling the number of bits from 32 to 128 means raising the number of addresses to the fourth power (2**32 vs. 2**128 = (2**32)**4). We can afford to spare a few bits for the sake of a more hierarchical and yet automated allocation policy that addresses some of the more glaring issues with IPv4, like the address conflicts which inevitably occur when merging two existing private networks.

Think of it this way: If we manage to be just half as efficient in our use of address bits compared to IPv4, it will still be enough to give every public IPv4 address its own private 32-bit IPv4 internet. Right now the vast majority of IPv6 unicast space is still classified as "reserved", so we have plenty of time to adjust our policies if it turns out that we need to be more frugal.

Then there are DHCP addressing schemes that use the MAC as part of the address, further reducing it.

Automatic address assignment (based on MAC or random addresses or whatever) comes out of the host-specific suffix, not the network prefix, so it doesn't reduce the number of usable addresses any more than the prefix alone. It does imply that you need at least a 64-bit host part in order to ensure globally uniqueness without manual assignment, but the recommended 64-bit split between network and host was already part of the standard.

Comment Re:What I would do different is DNS related (Score 1) 113

1) First I would have done only countries and no other TLD.

Personally, I would have done the opposite, and demoted country-specific sites to a second-level domain like The Internet is an international network; forcing every domain to be classified first and foremost according to its national origin would cause needless discord. Only a small minority of sites are truly country-specific.

it could have been or or any other that they wanted

In which case the country code would communicate zero information about the site—so why have it at all?

What might make more sense would be using registrars as TLDs (e.g. for MarkMonitor), with a convention that multiple TLDs can contain the same subdomains if and only if they mirror each other. This would tie in well with DNSSEC while also avoiding the need to defend one's domain name against scammers in a million separate TLDs. If a government just happens to run its own registrar it could use the country code for its TLD alongside non-country TLDs. The main difference from the current system would be that TLDs would be generic rather than catering to a particular kind of site, which is mostly the case in practice anyway: .com no longer implies commerce, not every .org is a non-profit, .net does not imply an ISP, etc. Instead, the TLD would imply a trust relationship; the name "" would imply looking up the "google" subdomain in the MarkMonitor domain registry, which would presumably be listed among the user's local trust anchors. If there were an alternative domain like "google.vs" (for VeriSign) it would be required to resolve to the same address.

Comment Re:The blame can be shared (Score 1) 576

Why not a 5 for "insightful" on this one? appears that politics infects /. too.

I believe it's the reverse.

I'd like to share a revelation during my time here on Slashdot. It came to me when I tried to classify your species. I realized that you're not actually sentient beings. Every sentient being on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with scientific debate and falsifiable/testable science versus political agendas but you Slashdotters do not. You move to a discussion and you troll and ad hominem until every logical argument and actual fact is dead. The only way you can survive is to spread to another discussion. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Slashdotters are a disease, a cancer of this scientific debate. You are a plague, and we are the cure.


Comment Re:Why do people care... (Score 1) 91

I'd think it's better to not be resorting to violence to resolve a violation of social protocol.

You seem to be missing the entire point here. It's not about what you think. It's about what the guys at that bar you walk into wearing a camera think. And they're not reading Slashdot.

But they do act predictably. If you go out in a storm with no rain gear, you're going to get soaked. Don't do that. If you insist on bringing a camera around people who don't think that's reasonable, it's not going to end well. Don't do that.

How you feel about that is about as important as how you feel about the weather.

Comment Re:Workaround (Score 1) 210

Of course, you lose the security updates if you do that too. Whether that's massively important to you depends on how often you run executables downloaded from the Internet, and what TCP/IP services you run on your computer.

Your security beliefs are about 10 years out of date, unless you consider JS to be an "executable downloaded from the Internet". Almost all malware targeted at home computers is "no click required": mostly malicious JS, but occasionally PDF, or even jpg (remember what that was a joke?), served via ad networks.

So "whether that's massively important to you" depends on whether the machine is used to visit any web sites that serve ads, unless you completely disable JS.

no security updates might be the better of two evils, especially if you don't use IE or Edge

Is MS combining OS and browser updates (and Office?) here? Or is it only the OS updates in the cumulative patch? (Pretty sure the browser and Office patches are regularly rolled into cumulative updates already, but independent ones).

Comment Re:Yup (Score 1) 279

The difference being that guns are designed and intended to kill.

That's why they work so well to protect life and property from those who would take them violently and why police carry them for the same reasons, duh!

It protects the smaller woman (or anybody less able to physically defend themselves) from the larger (and possibly more numerous) rapist(s)/attacker(s)/home-invader(s).

Privately owned firearms are used for defensive protection in the US on average (often without a shot being fired) anywhere from the bottom-end estimates of ~50,000-80,000 to a middle of ~2,500,000 and higher end estimates go to as high as ~4,700,000 times a year.


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Never appeal to a man's "better nature." He may not have one. Invoking his self-interest gives you more leverage. -- Lazarus Long