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Comment And the Big Boys Duke It Out (Score 1) 606

Since Google wants to be to pervasive in society, this is the type of exploit that is going to get leveraged.
Also since they want to be listening to everyone everywhere all the time for anything that might be potentially profitable for them, someone will eventually make sound bites that render them moot as quickly as possible.
Have fun, Google!

Comment Only the Text Message app on my phone (Score 1) 174

If it wasn't for my phone, I wouldn't have any such things to pester me.
At one point in the past, I had ICQ, but it turned into more than a little bit of a pain, so I simply dropped it and never went back.
God help the millennials these days if they can't get a job that allows them to Facebook, SnapChat or Twitter every few minutes.
Oh well. The side-effect of being a Dinosaur, I guess...

Comment Gotta Respect Private Property of Others (Score 1) 239

It truly is a shame that Common Sense Isn't anymore.
Privacy concerns, private property and trespassing, etc.
These things seem to fade into the background all the time. Other things like property damage (if a drone crashes into something) and similar liability.

Model planes and helicopters exist, and can be quite dangerous in the wrong hands, too. We've had them for years. Now that drones have a greater level of control, they pose a greater threat? I'm surprised that we haven't heard about R/C planes loaded with explosives and such being used for bad things.

Maybe they are, and we just don't hear about it...
I still would be annoyed by a drone buzzing by my window. Particularly a camera equipped one.

Comment A roller-coaster ride to upgrade (Score 1) 376

Well, I finally bit the bullet and upgraded my system.

What broke me? When they neutered the Windows 7 Update system, and doing a clean install didn't even fix it.

Seriously. Windows 7 is still supported software! I could see them trying this with WinXP, but Win7? Ouch!

I only had to upgrade my video card to get the system to be eligible to upgrade.
It went well enough, and I managed to keep most of my software.
Boot time was phenomenal!

The invasiveness: trying to push for a Microsoft Login as my Windows login... No, sorry. Not happening.
Fix/customize/adjust the Start menu? Cryptic and frustrating to say the least.
All the bundled crapware: Cortana, Edge, OneDrive, Subscription-based Solitaire... the list goes on and on.
Disabling and/or uninstalling much of the crapware resulted in breaking the OS, and I had to go to the Microsoft Community to fix things... That's another story in and of itself.
Not all my software is compatible with Win10 and either has to be run in compatibility mode, or replaced with something more functional under the OS umbrella.

Ugh. What a nightmare. Be prepared to relearn nearly everything OS related so you can actually get going with this monstrosity.

Beyond that, the UI is fairly slick. I never had Win8 or 8.1, so I can't compare those to Win10, but at least it has a desktop mode, and it doesn't default to "tablet mode" on me. Again, the boot time is great, and I don't even have an SSD. It even has dual monitor taskbar support built in! Kudos!

Also, once I found you can do a clean install using my old Win7 Product Key, life was a lot easier! I just used a clean drive, and put the old Win7 drive as storage and all my data was in familiar folders. Just remember to get the "take ownership" add-in, and you're golden.

I also strongly recommend using 3rd party email clients, like Thunderbird, a good browser, like Firefox or Chrome, and stay as far away from the toxic cloud as you can! Cortana has nothing on Siri but still harvests your data! No good can come from this, I say! She's been chained to the lousy Edge browser and Bing for a search engine, so you already know how useful her assistance will be based on that alone.

So, here's a couple of grains of salt to go with this post, and have at!

Happy computing!

Comment There has to be a high enough F.U. Factor involved (Score 1) 765

Simply put, if the employer is more likely to make your two week exit period a living hell, or the maximum inconvenience they can possibly engage in, then you are by far best served with a no-notice exit strategy.

Personally, it's not about sticking it to them, so much as avoiding them sticking it to you!

Most of the time, places will likely drop you like a hot rock the moment you give notice so they don't have someone around that can poison other employee's opinions about them and get them to quit as well, thus minimizing their losses by paying you off rather than "working you out the door".

Comment First it's Apple, then it's Android (Score 1) 266

As we all know, the moment they roll out something like this, people will first have an alternative phone or recording device that simply does not have the camera-inhibiting code in it. The next step will be wide-spread jail-breaking of devices that have been "infected" with this stuff.

Sure, the performers want it, the galleries would like it and Law Enforcement (and other clandestine operatives) might feel it necessary for the protection of it's collective members, but the fact remains: People will record stuff even if they're told they can't, and more heavily when they feel they are being repressed in any way. Any attempt to block their perceived "right" to record things will be met with resistance and even violence.

Frankly, any camera-based recording of a concert is not going to have decent enough quality to compete with a properly produced commercial release any way, so it's a fairly moot point.

Besides, if Sci-Fi is to be believed, there will be a back-and-forth of camera-blocking tech, and more sophisticated recording devices, so this is just going to be another curious series of events to keep us all entertained as it all rolls out.

Good luck with putting that hat on the snowball, there Apple. I am sure it will have much greater longevity in hell.

Comment It can be worth truly considering. (Score 1) 982

What most people forget when upgrading:
Are all their favorite programs or Apps "Fully Compatible" with the new Windows?

Do a little research before you commit, and you should be OK.

Also worth the thought and effort:
Make a comprehensive Backup of your system before you start, and have an Escape Plan in place if you want/need to roll back to your previous version.

Finally, if you pull that trigger, be prepared for a learning curve.
There are a lot of articles about the new Windows out there. Look them up! Things to enable, things to disable, things to just plain be aware of, features you may want to access and things you will want to uninstall completely.

Here are a few (hopefully) useful links:

And something you might also want to consider: Buy a new HD (or even that SSD you've been wanting, and do a Clean Install of Windows 10. Here's a URL for the How-To:

Sorry for all the Plain Text stuff. Anyone that has a bit of tech savvy will still be able to use these easily. After all, this is SlashDot.

And, yes, these are all from Lifehacker. As you can see, that source alone has a lot to reference. The internet itself is a huge resource. I have every confidence that the folks here can access even more if they put their minds to it. Just remember the basics of System Safety, have more than a few grains of salt ready and Play Nice out there, and you should be more than ready to upgrade when you actually feel the increasing pressure from Uncle Bill's minions!


Comment Painless transactions (Score 1) 223

The whole goal of Apple Pay (and Tap and Go, for that matter) is the attempt on the part of the Consumerism Machine to make it as Painless as possible to part us from our money. They don't want you to really Feel that over-priced coffee and croissant bleeding your wallet dry, day after day.

If something is less than easy, it becomes painful if we have to go through it for no real reason.

As a Canadian, I had anything tap-related disabled on my debit card the second I found out it was there. (My bank didn't even ask me if I wanted it.) I had heard about it having been abused from the friendly folks at an international border crossing. They had just been "upgraded" to that system in the food court, and a number of them had all been charged mysterious things within the first DAY of it going live. Apparently someone was milling around in said food court near the fast food lineup and "read" as many people as they could, charging them small amounts that they ultimately hoped would go unnoticed.

No PIN needed, No signature. No "confirmation" of any kind. Just a near-field reader, and limited withdrawal plan spread over a few hundred people. It's a telling thing that the banks themselves don't use the Tap-and-Go feature in their own branches!

It's bad enough that debit is not as widespread as it is up here. I mean, if you can't pay with a debit card at a restaurant, why would people want to adopt such a system? Up here, if you don't accept debit, you will loose a LOT of potential customers in a hurry!

Debit went from swiping the magnetic strip, to inserting a chipped card (for an "increase in security"). Then they want to go to a PIN-less tap-and-go system? Hardly secure, in my not-so humble opinion.

Apple pay at least has you agree on a screen to your purchase, but is still vulnerable to near-field interception of data and spoofing. And nit just your debit, but credit cards too? The thieves just Love the idea of all that near-field data flying around for them to use against your account balance!

That, and it's one more reason to have your phone stolen...

Just sayin'

Comment What a Knife Balancing Act This is! (Score 1) 191

On one hand, we have the "Freedom of Speech" with the Right to be Heard, no matter how unpopular the subject.

On the other hand, we have Control and Censorship to deter things and expressions that can and have been harmful to society as a whole.

What will this result in?

Let's all watch and see what happens here. No matter the result, it will have a far-reaching effect on things to come after.

Comment Rigid Schedule (Score 1) 250

Most "Smart Meters" have built in surge pricing already. Have such use charted, and build it into the Uber schedule. No more guesswork. If a driver wants to make money, they can make themselves available during peak payout time. If Uber wants to make more vehicles available, they need to have times linked to cover their deficit areas to attract more drivers to provide service during those underrepresented times. Don't tell me they (Uber) do not have the data to set something like this up. Nobody would believe it for a minute. If a city is truly worried about licensing and/or insurance, make having a Taxi License and 3rd party insurance mandatory to use Uber in that city/municipality. Many cities are already running sting operations (seen as entrapment by many) to detect and charge Uber drivers as it is. If anyone is savvy enough to have the license and insurance, they might even be able to put together a case for harassment*. *I am Not a Lawyer. No Legal grounds to actually follow this advice is here. Move along.

Comment Missing Option: NEVER: Makes the phone a Target (Score 1) 230

Not that cell phones aren't a target for thieves already, but making them the equivalent of your digital wallet is a BAD IDEA. People get mugged for their new iPhones as it is. Make it more of a target by adding a credit card to it, and it will be a Terrible Thing. I can't stand the Tap and Go system as it is! Too vulnerable to proximity readers.

Comment Re:The AES String (Score 1) 41

Your version might be wrong (as in O instead of 0)... Try this version and see if it does anything different for you:


Good Luck folks! I'm watching with piqued interest in this whole thing myself...

Comment Interesting Redirect in place (Score 1) 81

After looking at some of the older links I had to the Original Pirate Bay, I noticed that there is a redirect in place from some of them.

It points to This Site:

Not sure if this is official, or simply someone managing to make a play for the domain, but I thought it was interesting that there are folks redirecting traffic to their websites already.

Is this becoming more common, or is TPB in danger of becoming co-opted?

Comment McD's been doing it for years (Score 4, Informative) 122

Until recently, McDonalds and Tim Horton's in the GTA (Greater Toronto Area) have been doing this sort of thing for years. Usually in the form of 'minority hiring' that shuns the citizenry. They got their hands smacked soundly over it, and now are being watched like a hawk.

URL Reference here:

Now Microsoft is going to do it en masse, taking away the positions from Canadian citizens that have been training here...

There will be a reckoning over this one.

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