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Comment Re:Google obviously could have made Android.. (Score 1) 181

> binary executable portability, which isn't even an issue for Android at all

On the contrary, the AC which replied to you has shown that, as expected, the hardware on which Android runs is evolving quite quickly. If you were to install Linux would you choose to install a 32-bit version compiled for a Pentium processor?

> Google could have just created a standard compiler for Java (the language) to produce ARM assembly if they were so in love with that particular language

They would then be dependent on Oracle for any extensions they would want to add, or anyway be in the same boat they are today, more or less. The fact that the patent side of the case was thrown out very early in the proceedings means that Google's judgement was quite good (surprisingly so, since all cases, once they get to court, have a large element of luck).

Java is not just a "particular language", it was and still is one of the most widely used languages in the world, especially in the segment of devices like smartphones. You have to put Google's decision in context, when they made this decision Android had exactly 0% market share. Your argument is clouded by Android's subsequent success.

Comment Re:Poorly written FUD (Score 1) 368

Did Intel happen to pay for one or more independent reviews of the security of this setup? Has Intel published the results of these reviews?

Until then, I'll more or less assume that its security is still in question, thank you. (That doesn't mean I won't use it, of course. All kinds of insecure systems are useful).

And even with such reviews, it would probably be prudent to assume that the signing keys have been compromised, at at least the nation-state level.

Comment Possible bright side (Score 1) 337

Well, no matter whether the allegations are true or not, we now presumable have one highly motivated and capable pair of eyeballs which will carefully audit all new commits to the TOR code base.

The other possibility is that he'll fork and ignore TOR development altogether. Might be OK, but only if he can convince enough people to run nodes on his competing network. His competing network might be able use TOR as an exit route (running an exit node is the highest risk part of such a network).

Comment Re:Worse than that: this spacecraft has broken up. (Score 1) 77

Bummer about the mission.

I wonder if McDowell actually got permission to post that twit --- the ToU of space-track.org seem pretty strict:

The User agrees not to transfer any data or technical information received from this website, or other U.S. Government source, including the analysis of data, to any other entity without prior express approval. See, 10 USC 2274(c)(2).

Comment Go for CC music (Score 1) 224

> piracy the only sound and reasonable choice.

There are quite a few sources of legally free music, like Jamendo and ccMixter. And it's also easy to find non-free music which is not funding whoever it is exactly you don't want to fund. Often direct from the artist!

Even though I've only done it once or twice, my personal favorite way is to buy from good local acts at a live venue.

You lack imagination (even though I sympathize with your feelings).

Comment Re:Criminals are dumb (Score 1) 105

> make life of the next Scott Peterson too easy

Had never heard of him, and after searching I discovered that he is on death row, even though there was no "hard" evidence that he murdered his wife. Could you explain, then, how he is a good example to use to justify weakening encryption for all of society? His case would seem to be exactly the opposite --- a good example how, even if encryption of all our devices were impregnable, most criminals are stupid and it wouldn't help them anyway (hey, that's even the subject of your post!)

Comment Re:The author forgot one other option. (Score 2) 105

> and existence of encrypted data

I don't think it's possible to reliably show that encrypted data certainly exists. I also do not think it is always possible to prove that someone has the capability of decrypting data --- Bruce Schneier has proposed a scenario for people crossing borders where a long random key is used which is sent to the destination ahead of time so that any request for a decryption key could be truthfully answered with "I don't have the key". Assuming the trusted third party has been instructed to destroy the key in the case that the traveler is delayed, that scenario is indistinguishable from the scenario where the person is lying.

Comment Re:Not an American, not doing business in America. (Score 1) 102

but to doubt the foundation of society because you're unhappy with the way the government finally nailed a scumbag, that's a dangerous road.

I have no doubt about the value of "the rule of law", but I have plenty of doubts about its implementation. I can be very unhappy with the way the government decided to run the Megaupload case without necessarily disagreeing that quite possibly Megaupload deserved to be shut down or be forced to change how it did business (and ditto for Dotcom).

The adversial court system pretty much demands that both sides use any trick available.

If I were to accept this, as you seem to blithely do, then I guess that yes, I would have to doubt the value of "the rule of law". I not only reject this, I find that the court system is designed to actively discourage many such tricks. I rather doubt that this "testimony" (the economic damage part) will be actually used if Dotcom comes to trial. It would be ripped apart by any reasonable defense attorney (or more likely, preemptive action would be taken to prevent it from being presented to the jury). It seems to me that the DOJ is just covering its public relations ass, here (or even more likely, its corporate relations ass).

Comment Re:Not an American, not doing business in America. (Score 1) 102

> "the rule of law" is basically a precondition for civilization

And you are very satisfied with "the rule of law" in the US currently, and do not sense any problem with its functioning?

To me, it seems to be functioning worse and worse as time progresses, and I even feel that this trend is, unfortunately, accelerating. The debacle which is the Megaupload case is just the tip of the iceberg.

To get back to the case in question, don't you find it peculiar that the DOJ would make a condition of this plea bargain to be that the programmer in question "testifies" to the dollar amount of the economic damage to the rightsholders? Even if he had knowledge of exactly how many files were infringing and their download counts, he couldn't possibly be qualified to make such an estimate. Or is he an expert in economics and the movie industry, also?

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