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Comment Could lead? (Score 1) 256

This is a scary piece of technology. Could potentially lead to space race 2.0. If russia has nukes in space, it's only a matter of time before we will too.

Not 'could' - it already did. In the article about the X-37B, you can find:

The robotic space plane launched atop a United Launch Alliance Atlas V rocket on May 20, 2015, kicking off the X-37B program's fourth flight. This mission, dubbed OTV-4 (short for Orbital Test Vehicle-4), remains a clandestine affair. "I can confirm the fourth OTV mission is approaching one year on orbit," Air Force spokeswoman Capt. Annmarie Annicelli said in response to's inquiry about the X-37B's activities.

So apparently a space race is already going on, initiated by the US (or possibly China), in which the US now has a head start of a few years on Russia. Same as with nukes, same as with H-bombs.

Comment Re:FTFA (Score 3, Informative) 47

They mention at least one previously used: downloads of the 'free, unsupported' DirectMailer software. So they were apparently targeting people who wanted to send bulk email for free. Poetic injustice? Just guessing, but they could use the same trick with other 'free' products now. From the report:

5.1. "Cracked" DirectMailer
On the homepage, Yellsoft makes sure to tell its visitors that the company doesn’t o er support for copies of the software downloaded from [link deleted], with a link to the page. This page is hosted on, a free web hoster. Let’s see if we can get a copy of DirectMailer from there. Figure 9 Softexp web page with DirectMailer download link as seen in 2014 Sure enough, in 2014 you could download a le with a copy of DirectMailer. Since ESET Anti-Virus products started detecting DirectMailer as malicious, the software is no longer being distributed on The zip archive contains a executable le. Despite the .pl extension, it is not a Perl script, but an ELF executable. This executable le contains a Perl script packed with the Mumblehard packer. Analysis of the Perl script shows that a function called bdrp is invoked before the main program is started. This function has a uuencoded blob, which, once decoded, generates another ELF le. This ELF le is a packed Perl script consisting of the Mumblehard backdoor. It is written to the le system and a cron job is added to run it every 15 minutes.

Comment Re:WTF is "guard"? (Score 1) 123

As NSHipser describes it:

guard is a new conditional statement that requires execution to exit the current block if the condition isn’t met.

You can exit the current block from an if-statement, of course. But it doesn't force you to. Also, having a separate keyword for things like preconditions can make code more readable, because you can express your intent.

Comment Re:If they use that nuke Pyongyang will be gone in (Score 1) 170

I agree nuking capitals is not a very bright idea or something to look forward to. However, I don't share your optimism about how far the Nato would be willing to go, if it came to a serious war. According to this article, well after Hiroshima, serious plans were made to nuke Moscow and Leningrad.

Comment Re:Not a Canal (Score 1) 107

I don't have your deep understanding of the GP's credibility and undocumented insights into the as yet approved project

I don't think I claimed any insights into the project, and it's not your fault you never met the GP personally.

Having spent a number years living in Amsterdam: there are central areas where canals (kanaals) are not grachts;nor your "intuitions" about city marketing, determine where the final location will be.

Living there for thirty years now: true, but none that I could think of would make much sense for this project. Admittedly assuming that this is partly city marketing.

Don't be surprise if it winds up being built in Oog - the prophesies of Dutch politicians and the accuracy of news releases from the marketing departments of dutch engineering companies are no more reliable than those in other countries.

Not sure what you mean with 'Oog'; maybe Oost, after your spellchecker 'corrected' it? But, no argument about this not being certain. We'll see what gets built where and when.

Note that the "picture" that another poster mentions is not a real picture.


Comment Re:Anyone ever swim in those canals? (Score 3, Informative) 107

And live to tell?

Yes, it's not exactly clean water, but now that all houses and house boats are supposed to be connected to the sewer system for a few decades, it's definitely less filthy than it used to be.

How many window-sitter prostitutes wind up in those a month?

Zero-point-something. Not nearly as many as drunk tourists.

Can you smoke cannabis on the streets of Amsterdam? Hashish?

Sure, it's not necessarily a healthy idea, but it's allowed (and done a lot).

Is there an age limit to smoke dope?

Drink spirits? Wine? Beer?

Sure, 18 years for alcohol/sigarettes, I assume for dope too, not sure.

Comment Re:Terrible example of the use of 3D printing (Score 3, Interesting) 107

You raise an interesting point. The article linked to in an earlier post quotes the robot manufacturer like this:

MX3D says it can 3D print strong, complex structures of durable material, and that the new technique is more cost-effective and scalable than current 3D printing methods.

Sounds that comes straight from the marketing department, which suggests that something built using their technology is, at the moment, a more brittle, less durable, and not as cost-effective and scalable as something built using the traditional way. On the other hand, they do claim this new technology is making progress on these fronts.

Comment Re:Not a Canal (Score 1) 107

According to story you linked to (thanks, by the way), it'll be built 'in the centre of Amsterdam'. Which makes sense, from a city marketing perspective. This implies it will definitely be over a gracht. Call a it a canal or kannal if you like - but I can assure you you're wrong in assuming the original poster didn't know what she was talking about.

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