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Comment Rubbish! All I need is my single wireless phone... (Score 0, Flamebait) 198

Use a Google number which rings all my other phones? I don't know what century most of you live in, but I have only two phones in my entire life now: my wireless which is for friends/family, and my work phone. No land line at home, local telco can kiss my ass. I use my wireless to check mail and voicemail from work, well organized and easy to access. I see NO need to forward my work phone to home, which is discouraged by most employers anyway, and when I'm at work I must use the work phone for business calls, especially LD. So why would I need yet another number? Oh, the insanity, the pain... the pain... RUBBISH!!!

Comment AMD isn't hurting (Score 1) 469

AMD isn't exactly hurting, they netted a cool $1.177B of revenue in the first quarter of 2009 (ending 3/28) alone. But fair is fair and it is obnoxious, aside from being extremely profitable, to pay companies to use your product or lose their licensing agreements. Tony Soprano would be proud of such tactics. BTW, this sure sounds familiar, doesn't it? Think of one Mr. Bill Gates and his anti-Christ, sorry - I meant anti-trust, adventures that ultimately hurt the consumer via "frustrated innovation" as Neelie Kroes, head of the European commission's competition bureau deftly describes this case.

Comment Re:iPhone vs. Crackberry - an issue of encryption (Score 1) 191

It can be disabled via profile settings using ActiveSync, if I recall. Even if not, Apple is aware of this and should add that option to any management software. But Oracle, who now owns WebEx, demonstrated their iPhone app version of the popular web conference software and folks in government actually asked if the camera could be put on the other side (smile) for remote video conferencing.

Comment Re:iPhone vs. Crackberry - an issue of encryption (Score 1) 191

Unfair, sure. True? Also quite, quite sure.

This isn't about Bold or Storm which do not dominate the government sector and never will. Please bear in mind I mentioned iPhone is only 20+ months old to disclaim it's youth, and don't forget I also made clear that Blackberry is ahead of iPhone in encryption by government standards. My diatribe was to let folks know that likely sooner, not later, iPhone will be cracking the CrackBerry market share, as it already has dominated other sectors such as wireless broadband and Wi-Fi. I also should mention there is no central server in the network topology for an iPhone office network. Only management servers for initial configuration, rollout and remote wipe. Besides all that, iPhone is so intuitive that IT managers will also likely see a substantial drop in HelpDesk calls. This has already been proven in the limited markets iPhone dominates now. That's a very important matter in the government sector.

Comment Re:Why does it need to be secure? (Score 1) 191

Mr. President, it's the red button on the left side of the suitcase. No, the left, move the cuffs out of the way, please. [10 seconds go by] Sir, you're other left. Now insert and turn the key at the same time and press that... yes, that key... now turn it...the other way, sir... and at the same time... the SAME, meaning you need both hands, sir. [10 minutes of silence] Sir, target destroyed. Thank you for calling the Defense Departments Help Desk. You call has been logged as ticket number 198324344334-E and have a nice day.

Comment iPhone vs. Crackberry - an issue of encryption (Score 2, Informative) 191

I'm anxious to see when Apple will implement both data and transmission mandatory encryption on the iPhone for government and medical use. I attended an "iPhone and Government" meeting at one of Apples facilities in Reston, Va. the other day, with corporate representatives on hand to listen to the feedback of various agency IT/CIO folks and the concensus was Apple is working the DHS, OMB and other agencies to determine how Apple will pursue this. Being the iPhone was introduced only 20 some months ago, and version 3.0 of their OS is due later this year, their growth has been phenomenal, and finally they are devoting resources to the very vocal government sector who has hounded Apple to fully encrypt with sensible remote management and rollout.

For those not aware, the iPhone accounts for 60% of all combined wireless web traffic, offers Wi-Fi support in addition to 3G, and there are over 30,000 apps developed by 50,000 registered app developers. All apps reside in a sandbox, i.e. each has its own keychain of data and content and each requires a signed Apple security certificate authority to even run on the iPhone.

Many enterprise level apps already use proprietary encryption of data and transmission, password authentication and offer remote wipe, but we in the government await complete standardization of those (i.e. FDCC) as well as a vetted C&A process to ensure data integrity and performance.

It's just a matter of time, according to Apple, that Obama and the White House IT Dept. might consider trading in his Crackberry for the much more powerful and user friendly iPhone.

Obama To Get Secure BlackBerry 8830 191

CWmike writes "President Barack Obama is set to receive a high-security BlackBerry 8830 soon, The Washington Times reported today. The device is said to be in the final stages of development at the National Security Agency, which will check that its encryption software meets federal standards. It might not be ready for months. It was reported that Obama will be able to send text and e-mail messages and make phone calls on the device, but only to those with the secure software loaded on their own devices. The list includes First Lady Michelle Obama and top aides. The security software is made by Genesis Key, whose CEO, Steven Garrett, is quoted as saying: 'We're going to put his BlackBerry back in his hand.' The Sectera Edge was pegged in January by analysts as the top device choice because of its reputation for secure data communications when used by other federal workers. And there are many reasons why Obama might have been told 'no' on his BlackBerry. But Obama may wish he had chosen a Sectera if BlackBerry has more outage problems like its latest last week, which meant no mobile e-mail for hours across the US."

Submission + - Conficker.c is NO April Fools Joke

SrWebDeveloper writes: "According to CNN:

"Conficker.c imbeds itself deep in the computer where it is difficult to track. The program, for instance, stops Windows from conducting automatic updates that could prevent it from causing damage. The program's code is also written to evolve over time and its author appears to be making updates to thwart attempts to neuter the worm." Source

This worm is very real and although much hoopla has been written as to what it might or might not do on that infamous trigger date, April Fools Day, the fact is IT security personnel all over the world are seriously concerned about its potential impact. Although it is highly speculated that the worm is merely used as a means to sell software via phishing schemes, some fear there is a "master machine" which on the triggered date and time will communicate with all the "zombie" affected machines for whatever nefarious purpose to wreak havoc on the world. The key difference between this latest strain and the B variant is that the new one "will generate 50,000 URLs per day instead of just 250 when it becomes active." This obviously would result in a serious impact on network performance. Due to the concern in general, just minutes ago the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) provided a detection tool for government agencies (where I work) that can be used to protect against the Conficker worm. More to the point, DHS encourages the install to occur immediately which is noteworthy and indicative of a typical last minute fear based response. Problem solve by fire. The parallels to the Net traffic on said issue are eerie.

Be it true or not that speculation, fear and concern has run rampant in combination with it soon being April Fools, one thing is very clear — it's best to take action and be prepared than sit idly by and wait for a sign the sky is falling. Of course the atmosphere of fear is a victory for the worm author unto itself, after all. Maybe that's the point.

I also wish to note that Microsoft maybe should be completely ashamed and hopefully be subject to wide scale class action litigation if it is true that an Internet worm can actually disable automatic updates on nearly any modern flavor of Windows. I am not an IT security specialist and happen to be a Mac user so I leave this to the respondents on Slashdot to discuss. In the meantime, please update your security software and always remember — even worm novices like me know the human being is the weakest link in any security chain. Let us hope tomorrow is a laugh a minute April Fools Day. Just note as I write this, today's date."

Comment The MPAA perspective - a system of corruption (Score 1) 640

We all know PG-13 is box office gold compared to an R rating for movies like this. But what exactly is an "R" rated superhero?

According to the MPAA, the superhero resides in a film that "contains some adult material. An R-rated motion picture may include adult themes, adult activity, hard language, intense or persistent violence, sexually-oriented nudity, drug abuse or other elements, so that parents are counseled to take this rating very seriously." (source)

As you see, it's not just language, it's HARD language which of course is unspecified. It's not just violence, but intense and persistent. Nor is it just nudity, i.e. "naked women", it's nudity presented in a sexually oriented nature, and it's not just using drugs, but abusing them.

And even after all that:
"Generally, it is not appropriate for parents to bring their young children with them to R-rated motion pictures," says the MPAA guidelines.

This is all entirely subjective and as a result most movies are not faithful to their source screenplay or origin book due to cuts and re-edits to satisfy the MPAA so the most revenue can be squeezed from the largest possible audience. What you end up seeing onscreen is the result of a board of 10-13 individuals, each working periodically, each with their own agendas under a chairperson who has unlimited power to select anyone they choose - the qualifications being no more or less than experience with parenthood as an adult member of the community. Film producers are also under no obligation to submit a film for rating, but the industry as a whole has learned an unrated film squashes advertising revenue, reduced media exposure and opens up the door to lawsuits and negative publicity from special interest groups. So they play the system, often re-submitting films over and over after copious edits to try to satisfy the MPAA for that "gold" PG-13 rating. Any industry member knows it's not about being faithful to their art, it's all about that rating and the resulting increased revenue.

And the MPAA site states, "No one in the movie industry has the authority or power to push the Board in any direction or otherwise influence it."

We all know that the public influences the MPAA, society influences it, and the constant pushing of the envelope by film producers clearly influences how ratings are classified and assigned to those who "volunteer" for the MPAA's stamp of approval. There is no alternative, so this is how the system works until the industry and society as a whole puts enough pressure on the MPAA to put their loose standards to the test.

Is this system as described above corrupt? You're damned right it is.

Comment One part in a million (or two) is all it takes... (Score 1) 62

Did you know the Space Shuttle is comprised of 2.5 million parts making it the most complex machine ever built? Of these parts, steel valves are considered critical and of the highest order to resolve before launch. It's shameful that NASA has so technical snafu's that result in launch delays but one must be reminded the Shuttle program is nearing extinction and suffered severe underfunding and mismanagement since 2004. There is no story here, we're not dealing with "go fever" or lack of engineering ethics. This is simply a sensible delay called by a beleaguered but pragmatic administration responsible for human lives and a machine that still gets the job done. The shuttles help construct the ISS, launches satellites, documents space/Earth observation and serves as a taxi service and escape vehicle for astronauts and cosmonauts. Yes, all it takes is one part in a million (or two) to bring the shuttle and the entire program to an instant extinction faster than a legislative body can do by simply denying funds. In life there is risk and only in risk is there achievement and glory. The entire program was a risk. As we learn of yet another delay, one should never forget the great endeavor which was and for now still is the Space Shuttle.

Comment You mean he doesn't actually have AIDS? (Score 1) 187

Yes, the subject of this reply is tasteless. Just as tasteless as a corporation releasing personal health matters under the guise of "full disclosure" or a government agency's "review" without any evidence of malfeasance whatsoever. The truth is Mr. Jobs simply suffered a misdiagnosis which led to rampant speculation opening the door to all this insane over reaction. Let's all wish the man good health and offer support in his time of physical crisis, and maybe offer a damned apology for the burden of all this unnecessary and additional emotional baggage. He's earned better than this.

Comment Windows 7 - Blue Screen of Death now in 3D! (Score 1) 746

Windows 3=Crawlware
Windows 95/98/ME=Crapware
Windows NT=Oldware
Windows 2000=Repeatware
Windows 2003=ThickCockware
Windows XP = Bloatware (Classic)
Windows Vista = MorbidlyObeseware
Windows 7 = Beware

All that's really changed over time is the BLUE SCREEN OF DEATH is now finally rendered in 3D. Big whoop-de-fucking-dah.

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