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Comment Happy to donate your money (Score 1) 399

What makes me laugh is nobody's actually stated the obvious, looking after the poor and the needy is the Government's job. Companies really shouldn't be donating money to charities at all, their job is to look after their shareholders, ie you don't have a by the people for the people section in a companies constitution. If a manager want to feel good about themselves, get them donate their own money, and not somebody else's money. As a Google shareholder I'd be pissed off and I'd be asking whoever approved this to reimbursing me.
If you care about people vote for a government that cares for people and provides basic healthcare, dole and pay your taxes to support this agenda.
Personally I don't think that donations to charities and religious organizations should be tax deductions at all, effectively they're just tax dodges.

Comment Re:Exposed our jugular veins to predators (Score 3, Insightful) 141

You're flat out wrong. Provably secure system exist and have existed for decades. Go to, or go back to Uni and learn a little. The fact that it's much cheaper to develop systems which aren't is a design choice. The people making those design choices should be held accountable for the decisions, no ifs, no buts.
Heads on sticks is the answer, who was responsible for implementing this system on Windows? Who was responsible for not patching the system? and who was the clown that provided vectors from the Internet to this system?

Comment It's you stupid (Score 1) 159

Consumers are being had, a large single entity controlling distribution is not a good thing for you. If you look at how Dell buys components it shares its component sourcing among a variety of manufacturer, it buys more cheap ones than expensive ones however it ensures that competition remains.
From a technical perspective Netflix can limit content based upon your location. No if or buts. Netflix don't limit your content for a couple of reasons.
1 It makes their service more attractive.
2 Technically it may require changes to their infrastructure and software stack. (but its not difficult)
3 They are well aware of the first mover advantage.
4 You subscibe and authenticate.
5 Your money come from a country
Netflix know that in the future they will limit by geographical location and the reason for this is simple, licensing and profit, but first any hint of competition should be eradicated.

Comment security through bscurity is rubbish (Score 1) 54

The problem isn't selfies, the problem is poor maintenance, system design etc. This just gives the idiot who made the decision to connect the internet to the floodgate controller the ability to point his finger at someone else.
Its a simple rule don't directly connect your control plane to your windows desktop network that surfs the Internet. It's a bit like a toilet in the corner of your bedroom, undoubtedly convenient but a dumb idea.

Comment Evolving protocol more than ten years old (Score 2) 62

Hi, as someone who also worked for a company which was working for Centrelink at the time (Not involved in PLAID) I have to admit that I admire the development of PLAID because the commercial products available were rubbish and "Security agencies" such as NSA and DSD were not helpful in this regard. A significant gap in the way that smart-cards which were being used for access control such as building security worked was found and an attempt was made to re-mediate this.
Protocols evolve over time to either become better or reveal the fact that they are fundamentally flawed. SSL was not written by cryptographic experts it was created by Netscape and it has evolved over time to secure a significant percentage of Internet transactions. PLAID exists because all of the available security products in this space were fundamentally broken and PLAID was an attempted to fix this problem. During the time since this protocol was created I've watch the various debacles with a number of propriety commercial smart card products used in public transport. I would hope that PLAID will evolve over time with the assistance of interested parties to be an open protocol which provides a solution in this problem space.
One criticism of this appears to be that a department which spends billions of dollars on ICT infrastructure should engage in the development of a product when there is an identified gap identified in the market. The spend in total was in the hundred thousand dollars so in reality the project was done on a shoestring is it's not surprising that there are flaws.

Comment Aptitude and Interest (Score 0) 241

Personally I'm sick of developers who didn't go to Universities and don't study the field who get promoted to well beyond their understanding and abilities. That's not to say that there aren't some very good programmers who didn't go to university however in most cases their sphere of knowledge is constrained by the tool-sets that they've worked on and their interest in ICT theory in general. Recently I was working with a developer turned manager and there was a requirement to develop a software component with far greater assurance than he had come across. He was completely unaware that there have been decades of research in this field which has lead to a variety of techniques for developing high assurance software components. After a less than friendly series of meetings I finally had to approach him in private with a set of texts for him to read which provided him with an introduction to the various fields. Prior to that he firmly believed that Object Oriented programming was the be all and end all of programming techniques.
In countries with free educations systems all aspiring programmers should go to Universities (even if they don't finish they tend to pick up some gems), in the US with the education systems is geared towards ensure that the wealthy get the top jobs it's not as cut and dried as the education system is a bit broken.
However the key factor in this field is aptitude and interest, the concept that you can train a bunch of people with low IQs and no interest to code effectively is completely broken. If you look at standardized aptitude tests the profile required for good programmers sticks out like dogs balls, any country that wants a strong ICT industry would be better off developing this pool of talent via scholarships and special training.

Comment In 5 years it will look at lot like now (Score 1) 233

The cloud is a new service, for some it will be economical and for others it won't be. If the cloud was really changing IT companies like IBM, HP and Microsoft etc would be tanking. They're not so these clowns are just trying to convince you to part with your cash. Yes the cloud will mean the mum and dad companies can run their IT services in the Interwebs however bigger companies will still see the break even point for running their own infrastructure with maybe their backup web presence in the cloud when and if it makes sense. In the final analysis money talks and bullshit walks.

Comment It would be better to see Differential pricing (Score 1) 45

Due to its relative isolation Australians pay significantly higher prices than their overseas brethren for a variety of goods and services. These prices have nothing to do with costs and everything to do with a market that has been geographically isolated from a historical perspective. What I find incongruous is that politicians do nothing to overcome these rigged markets. For example an xbox game is significantly cheaper in the US however it won't play on an Australian console, a home theatre amplifier costs more than twice the US price. A kindle book priced in American dollars is blocked from sale from Australian Internet addresses. Recently I could buy two of the same model Dell computer in the US, ship it to Australia for less than the price of the Australian channel. When Dell were contacted about this they said that they would refuse to support such a purchase (Initially they claimed the costs were import duties etc until I pointed out the actual duties). It is ironic that implementing these anti-piracy is not in the public or government interest from an economic perspective given the current budget problems and ensuring that purchasing parity would create a more efficient market enabling the Australian economy to complete more effectively. Australia is a net importer of entertainment goods and propping up distribution channels is in no-ones interest bar the owners of those channels. (Who incidentally donate to the political parties involved)

Submission + - goatse image billboard hack (vice.com)

Stonefish writes: A billboard in Atlanta was hacked to display one of the most infamous memes (goatse) on the Internet. Apparently the owners didn't care about the lack of security. Being Atlanta I'm surprised that someone didn't try to shoot it down. If anyone hasn't seen goatse and is tempted to search for it, remember that there are some things that you can't unsee.

Comment Re:Pro-bono? (Score 1) 66

It should be the norm but its not. Company's normally side with the approach that costs the least, in this case handing over their clients details puts an end to the matter at a low cost possible cost.
I suspect, based upon their previous legal challenges that the management of iiNet actually think that what is occurring here is wrong and they're putting their money into what they believe which isn't something that you often see in the corporate world.

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