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Comment Re:Surge should fire their admin (Score 4, Informative) 565

From the article now that I took the time to read it:

According to a series of tweets from the Surge twitter account, the NRA sent a legal complaint to Cloudflare, which then forwarded it to Digitalocean. Surge responded âoewithin 22 minutes.â Digitalocean asked Surge to provide counterclaim documents. Some minutes later, Digitalocean shut down Surge.sh. According to Surge, 38,000 sites became unavailable.

That at least seems more plausible. I wonder if Surge will spread their services accross several hosting providers after this incident.

Comment Re:Poor response. (Score 1) 387

Amazon doesn't normally do that -- they just rent the (virtual) servers, the dashboard and other software including the OS would have been installed by the customer, at most they might reboot or shutdown and restart a machine . . . but they provide a self-serve API to do that, so probably not even that.

Unless the access involved the attackers getting the AWS account credentials, I don't think there's much Amazon could do.

Comment Re:Cue NSA infilatration in 3...2.... (Score 4, Funny) 171

We, the open source and freedom-loving community, may need an organized task force to keep track of these programmers, track their incomes, and store their communications -- just for future reference in case something comes up and a mole is suspected, not an actual search as the Constitution defines it, of course. Similar to the Apache Foundation and other Foundations for Open Source causes, but tasked with keeping our communications secure, and breaking the other side's communications where feasiable. We'll have to keep the existence of the Association secret as much as possible of course, and thus also hide it's budget in small items spread accross the other Foundations. They'll archive all the repos and mailing lists and IRC channels and any other communication medium, but advances in technology make the storage on that scale cheaper. We might have to rent a large building out somewhere that has cheap land and few pesky curious tresspassers, Utah or something. We'll just refer to it as No Such Association for now. A small and expedient measure given the threats of our times.

Comment Re:Long live TeX and LaTeX (Score 2) 479

https://www.writelatex.com/ and https://www.sharelatex.com/ and several desktop latex editors seems to work OK despite your logic.

The main appleal of LaTeX is precisely that you aren't supposed to continuously re-render it, you are supposed to write things. Then you twiddle how it looks a bit at the end.

Optimizing web pages for speed of rendering the output seems reasonable, but I'm not sure that should be a big consideration in a document format.

Comment Re:The dilema ... (Score 2) 427

According to the UN Charter itself, spying would not be an act of war, definitely not a reason to start one. See:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chapter_VII_of_the_United_Nations_Charter
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Casus_belli

As a practical matter, we cannot allow spying to be considered a reason to go to war, because by it's nature it is hard to prove and easy to fake; it would basically be giving states the right to start a war whenever they want. At times in history we've tried that, such when most of the states of Europe were basically the persons of kings, and it didn't work out so we came up with rules.

This issue is a distraction, as is Private Manning's sexual identification. It just doesn't matter. It is actually the job of the NSA to spy on those communications, and as institutional, political communications they don't have the same moral scanticy and protection as private, individual humans' communications. Prior to Terror being the primary justification, the NSA used to justify some of their actions by saying that they discovered when large foreign contracts had been decided by bribe, and saved American companies the cost of bidding on them; that is also exactly what they are supposed to be doing.

The fact that the NSA got caught, or perhaps even worse yet chose to leak this activity to distract from the fact they got caught in their other activities, is more evidence the agency is out of control and needs to be brought to heel.

In my opinion, the NSA was basically killed by giving it an unlimited budget. Under such circumstances an organization tends to seek out the most expensive, least innovative, least risky things to do and firehose money into them. Take your favorite causes -- defense and law and order if you are right wing, education and health care if you left wing, or your perfered church if you are religious -- and the quickest way to thoroughly destroy that cause is to give it's institutions an unquestioning loyalty and unlimited budget.

In spite of the fact that I think some things the NSA does are good, and perhaps necessary in the long term, I think the best action currently would be to close the whole agency for a number of years. We'd run some risks in doing so, but leaving them on their current path is also running some risks. You can't wave the bogey man of an Islamic Caliphate or whatever and then pooh-pooh the bogey man of a internal Cheka or Stasi. I think if we cut the place down cold, and let the giant glass buildings and huge datacenters collect dust and mold for about 4 to 6 years, we'd be in a better position to restart something smaller and more disciplined around 2020. I think you need to close it for that long, so that all the careerists in there know they have to switch careers and get into other areas. You might end up hiring a large chunk of them back, of course, but half a decade in a different industry shakes up the bureaucratic allegences and gives people a different point of view.

Comment Re:You can do this with more features! (Score 1) 56

I like your site and your portfolio and products.

If you want to get the free slashvertisement of a /. story, you need to use the platform to do something that slashbots would like to talk about, like maybe explore a walled-off section under the stairway of some historical building, or something.

Also, your store sends people to inertialabs.com which then in turn sends people over to robotmarketplace.com. Have it take people directly where they need to go.

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