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Comment Re:Possibly it is pay for risk (Score 1) 91

Most mid level managers are busy doing their jobs, doing routine planning and handling unending crises. Corporate value is beyond their horizon. They aren't scheming and backstabbing and whatever else your ignorant dreams see them doing. There are the rare Machiavellians and show boaters, but they don't represent the bulk of mid level management.

Comment Re:EEE (Score 1) 364

I'm entirely sure they'd be happy with you re-purchasing your games through the MS store.

The bigger problem with the backlog of games (and other software entirely unrelated to games) is that Steam people aren't stupid or lazy, but many other developers are. Short of literally locking the platform (which would garner them some serious anti-competition lawsuits,) at the end of the day they have to allow software to run on their platform. Nobody uses an OS purely for the file explorer. Third party apps are a necessity.

Which means Steam can just continually upgrade their app to match. They're doing that regularly anyway to keep up with video driver changes and other tweaks.. its a bit of a pain but having one more source of reasons to push patches isn't exactly going to break them.

What would get broken is everybody else who doesn't have the money or manpower to keep up with a constant stream of breaking changes. Never mind the developers that have gone out of business and end users that rely on their products go from unsupported to completely SOL.

MS really can't "break" Windows in any significant way. Sure they might try to tweak or deprecate specific APIs that Steam happens to use and few other software packages do, but I'm sure the Steam programmers have the capacity to work around things like that. And the main Win32 API can't just be pulled without driving off a large portion of your customer base that now can no longer use all of the (non-game-related) apps they rely on. Especially corporate customers who make up a large portion of MS' income and give exactly zero shits about Steam or games. Probably prefer if their users aren't able to play games on their work systems. But they sure as hell care if their $50,000/seat CAD software stops working every few months.

Submission + - Vulnerability Allows Hackers to Snoop on Wireless Keyboards (

msm1267 writes: Wireless keyboards made by eight different companies suffer from a vulnerability that can allow attackers to eavesdrop on keystrokes from up to 250 feet away, researchers warned Tuesday.

If exploited, the vulnerability, dubbed KeySniffer, could let an attacker glean passwords, credit card numbers, security questions and answers – essentially anything typed on a keyboard, in clear text.

Keyboards manufactured by Hewlett-Packard, Toshiba, Kensington, Insignia, Radio Shack, Anker, General Electric, and EagleTec are affected, according to Marc Newlin, a researcher with Bastille Networks who discovered the vulnerability.

Bastille gave the manufacturers of the keyboards 90 days to address the vulnerability, but most vendors failed to respond to their findings. Newlin said only Jasco Products, a company that manufactures the affected keyboard (GE 98614) for General Electric, responded and claimed it no longer manufactures wireless devices, like keyboards. As there doesn’t appear to be a way to actually fix the vulnerability, it’s likely the companies will eventually consider the devices end of life.

Comment Re:TFA is not terribly clear... (Score 1) 221

Its different in one major way: If you fail to open the door, they can (and will) just break it down.

If you fail to unlock your phone on the other hand, the police are kind of screwed.

Sure they can beg Apple or Google for unlock abilities, but that's literally not possible for those companies to provide -- they intentionally do not retain the encryption keys in order to reduce their liability in cases like this.

The whole Apple fiasco a while ago wasn't them giving up the encryption key. What they did was provide a version of the OS that didn't lock the phone after too many failed attempts. The cops still had to brute force the passcode (which luckily for them is only 10,000 possibilities.) If that guy had used a full password or other strong lock instead of a regular 4 digit passcode, the cops would have had no recourse at all.

Comment Re:TFA is not terribly clear... (Score 1) 221

the best course of action if you don't like that fact is to stop using real evidence

That's the trick though. Why is my phone not protected because I used a fingerprint while your phone is because you used a passcode?

In both cases, the access to evidence is exactly the same. Neither of us are providing testimonial information -- a passcode by itself says nothing about who you are or what you've done any more than my fingerprint does (and perhaps less since my fingerprint could potentially be matched against the crime scene.. but lets assume they've already got other copies of my print by the time they get to trying to unlock my phone!)

Honestly all of these laws are kind of bogus in the digital age. The fact of the matter is that if you refused police entry to your house or other place of interest, they picked up a ram and knocked the door in and had their way with your documents belongings (hopefully with right of warrant or they'd be breaking the fourth!)

In the digital world though, the police have no recourse. If you refuse to give up your password, and assuming its strong enough to prevent brute forcing, the police are left with no recourse whatsoever. Whether that's good or bad is up for debate of course. (My personal opinion is that they should be allowed to compel you no matter what type of lock you use -- As long as they get a warrant, same as when they enter your home to search for physical evidence. Not that my opinion matters in the grand scheme of things.)

But whichever side of the equation you fall on, the underlying problem is that its still different from a physical entry and trying to rely on laws created 200 years before anyone even dreams of these kind of devices to give us more than vague direction is a bit foolhardy.

And I mean you see it all the time already. Your digital devices are considered physical evidence when the cops want to stop you from taking the fifth, but non-physical evidence when they want to confiscate so that it doesn't fall under the fourth. How does that work out? Its like the cops coming into your home and making photocopies of all your documents and then saying its not a fourth amendment violation because they didn't technically "search" (blindly copying everything) nor "seize" (just making copies) the originals. Yeah that doesn't work out so well for them.. and yet its no less of a valid digital vs analog analogy than many of the ones they actually use to justify their doings.

Of course, half the lawmakers today seem to have no more knowledge of digital devices than the founders did so I'm not sure I'd really trust them to make fair laws at this point even if they did realize that the old laws aren't completely applicable.. but that's a whole other issue in its own right.

Comment Re:3D X Point has no transistors,10X as dense as D (Score 1) 128

DRAM requires one transistor per cell, which is one reason why it draws much more power per GB than a NAND flash drive

Isn't it fun when somebody technically ignorant tries to explain technology? DRAM draws lots of power because the charge that defines a bit leaks away, and to avoid loss of data refresh cycles are required, which means power draw. Flash leakage is more than 10 orders of magnitude lower, which means that practically speaking a flash device does not need to be refreshed.

Submission + - How Some ISPs Could Subvert Your Local Network Security (

Lauren Weinstein writes: You can see the problem. If your local net has typically lax security, and you don’t have your own firewall downstream of that ISP modem, the modem Wi-Fi security could be disabled remotely, your local network sucked dry late one night, and security restored by the morning. You might not even have a clue that any of this occurred.

Submission + - MH370 Pilot Flew a Suicide Route on His Home Simulator Closely Matching Final Fl ( 1

schwit1 writes: Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 was likely steered into the sea intentionally, by its own captain, in a pre-planned mass murder-suicide, a new report reveals.

In an exclusive story posted online Friday, New York magazine says that the plane’s captain, Zaharie Ahmad Shah, “conducted a simulated flight deep into the remote southern Indian ocean less than a month before the plane vanished under uncannily similar circumstances.”

Comment I removed myself from Linkedin on the very day (Score 1) 64

I removed myself from Linkedin on the very day that Microsoft bought it. I'm not a totally rabid anti-Microsoft, but there's a sustained history of unpleasant business practices. I don't want them in my professional life, such as it is, at 65. People may say (somewhat rightly) that I have that option.

However, here is a thought experiment. If everyone closed their Linkedin account, then Microsoft is immediately out $26 billion, no rioting, no police or lawyers, nothing. This is rather beneficial flip side of if it's free, you are the product, more like if you can de-subscribe, you control the value of the product, less elegant but truthy.

Comment The key word was/is 'universal' (Score 1) 524

Doesn't anyone understand that half of the consumer offer is (what I call) 'binaries' now? For a specific razor, there is a specific blade, printer and printer cartridge (preferably with phone-home and self-destruct for any third party supplier), coffee machine and specific coffee capsule. So basically, you buy the thing and then you buy the accessory until the thing wears out.

If people start making stuff according to universal standards, then things fit in other things and the sky will fall. I agree that this argument is weak when applied to headphones, but it's part of it. For example, once we have bluetooth only, let's encrypt the stream, so that only Apple headphones (or Whatever TM and licensed) work.

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