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Submission + - Uruguay becomes first country to legalize marijuana trade (

danieloch writes: (Reuters) — Uruguay became the first country to legalize the growing, sale and smoking of marijuana on Tuesday, a pioneering social experiment that will be closely watched by other nations debating drug liberalization.
Other countries have decriminalized marijuana possession and the Netherlands allows its sale in coffee shops, but Uruguay will be the first nation to legalize the whole chain from growing the plant to buying and selling its leaves.
Registered drug users should be able to start buying marijuana over the counter from licensed pharmacies in April.

Submission + - Africa, Clooney and an unlikely space race (

MightyMait writes: Did you realize that African nations have space programs and that there is a (non-fictional) George Clooney connection? This BBC article details the history of space exploration in Africa as well as current efforts. Of course, it's natural to wonder:

To Western eyes, it may seem rather innappropriate to launch space programmes in sub-Saharan Africa, where nearly 70% of the population still lives on less $2 a day. Yet Joseph Akinyede, director of the African Regional Centre for Space Science and Technology Education in Nigeria, an education centre affiliated with the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs, says that the application of space science technology and research to “basic necessities” of life – health, education, energy, food security, environmental management – is critical for the development of the continent.

Submission + - A Conversation With Bruce Schneier

An anonymous reader writes: Following on Eben Moglen's mind-warping series of talks about life after Snowden, the Software Freedom Law Center has invited Bruce Schneier to join Eben for a conversation informed by Bruce's own analysis of the leaked documents. Bruce is one of the smartest thinkers around when it comes to understanding how security and surveillance operate in the real world. And he is unsurpassed at presenting complicated security concepts even to people who lack his expertise. Between Moglen's sophisticated thoughts and Bruce's grounded approach, we're sure to learn a lot about where we stand and what we can do next!

Comment typically hopeless (Score 1) 354

It is almost as if authors didn't know that lulzsec already burns all evidence and is already scattered.

"...and here in this dark closet cleverly hidden behind david bowie poster I keep the still-sticky keyboard as well as a hard copy print out of the logs from the time i hacked into PSN"

Comment Who admits to being under 18 except maybe FBI (Score 1) 295

I realize it's the right thing to do for a person of seasoned age to make jokes about how bad/dumb/noob/etc kids are these days (cause these days are so much worse than back in the good old days) but I really doubt any of them are admitting to being under 18 in any sort of online experience - be it surveys or being asked by various forms.

Meanwhile, a lot of companies will ask for your age (to protect themselves from retarded laws most likely but possibly for marketing reasons also). This includes but not limited to going to websites for demos/trailers and/or promotional websites (and also porn ofc).

  I make it a point to select lowest possible year of birth (usually 1900) because "fuk da police"

By similar token I think most under-18s will not actually say they are 18 at any stage because there's just no advantage to saying your real age while there's a very high chance of being forwarded to instead of the good stuff.

Comment Re:What stops malicious content? (Score 1) 98

I enjoy a very wide variety of PC games and almost always, after finishing the game in vanilla falvour, investigate a very wide variety of mods if the game allows modding. I have contributed heavily to a number of mods out there also.

The reason you don't see much malware hidden inside mods is because it is very rare for mods to be in an executable form.

Generally mods come in the form of graphics packages and scripts. It is very hard, if not impossible for graphics/sound/geometry to contain malware. The scripts sure sound dangerous until you realise that their capabilities are limited by the actual game. I am yet to see a game where script/config files have the scope to cause damage outside the installation let alone steal your password or something similar.

Now, there are a number of addons for various games (morrowind/oblivion/fallout come to mind) where mods rely on 3rd party executables.

There is a danger there - however it is very effectively mitigated by the fact that very few if any of these executables are hosted on their own servers. Almost always they are hosted by a third party hosting site (modDB for example, or *nexus or planet*). While these sites usually deny any responsibility it is generally a safe bet that if someone gets owned/hax0red/virused/etc the third party program wouldn't last very long and thus have very little effect on the broader population of users.

Another thing to note is that generally the games that allow/encourage modding do so by making their core program very robust. the main executable files/parsers/etc are all designed to allow a great/varied amount of input.

Such design generally means that to mod these games you don't have to download hacked game.exe (a great vector) in order to enjoy a mod. It means that you just download some script/graphics/etc files that go in the override (baldours gate for example) directory and the actual original game (which is presumed safe in the scope of this discussion) will accept that input and output a modded game.

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