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Comment Terrible summary (Score 1) 186

Though it would have a similar result, this is entirely unrelated to the calls to block porn by default in order to protect children using the internet.

The stated goal here is to make it harder for paedophiles find child-porn by searching for codewords in adverts on legal porn websites.

This still seems pretty short-sighted to me, if we're aware of these secret code-words, shouldn't we be attacking the source of the problem? If porn sites were blocked from search engines, wouldn't these disguised adverts just be placed elsewhere?

Comment Re:Flat-Line (Score 1) 485

Even if I wasn't gaming, I'd still buy a desktop over a laptop.

If I'm doing a reasonable amount of work, I'd rather be doing it at a desk, with a good keyboard and monitor. If I'm just entertaining myself, I can probably get away with a tablet.

I can see the need for a laptop in some cases (for example, I very rarely want to work on the move or need to work in different locations frequently) but it doesn't meet any specific need I have. For me, the increased cost, increased difficulty in replacing parts, worse ergonomics and shorter life expectancy of a laptop is too high a cost for mobility.

Comment I guess "cheating" makes for a better headline... (Score 1) 241

I guess "cheating" makes for a better headline but this is an excellent way of taking notes in class.

With several people contributing to the same page of notes you can correct each others mistakes and don't risk missing an important point in the lecture because you were busy writing down the last important point.

Comment Re:You are BROADCASTING your SSID. (Score 1) 284

Can you back up that claim? Is there evidence that APs with SSID broadcasts disabled are still used for location tracking?

Presumably if it isn't announcing it's SSID, your router is only broadcasting signals if someone is using the network. In this situation, can an observer distinguish between the AP and the client?

Furthermore, is an ordinary phone able to detect the existence of an AP which isn't broadcasting its SSID?

Comment Re:Cordless (Score 1) 344

Really? Desk mic?

My experience of my friends who use a desk mic is that I can hear far too much of what they're doing (typing, moving a glass etc.)

I guess using PTT rather than voice activation may solve most of these problems.

I have some bluetooth headphones which are great for music but the latency makes them useless for gaming. Unfortunately I'm not ready to plash out on a cordless headset for my PC just yet.

Comment Re:Very disappointing (Score 1) 109

Only in the U.S. can you sell 2 million units of something and still be considered a failure.

Success or failure is determined not by copies sold but by profit made.

Profit depends on your costs. If your game was made by a few guys in a single office over a few months then your costs could be pretty low. Mirror's Edge was made by a large team over several years.

Profit also depends on income. Mirror's Edge dropped in price quickly after release and you could pick up a copy for about £5 now. Additionally it has been on sale on Steam and at other online retailers several times. Copies sold at a discount obviously provide less income.

So how to fail after selling 2 million copies? Make a hugely expensive game and make most of your sales at a huge discount.

Comment Re:I'll tell you why dumb phones dominate... (Score 1) 618

I can't believe the US puts up with those sorts of prices!

My data contract costs £35 ($56) a month and is considered expensive.

Previously, I had a dumb phone on pay as you go. I used it infrequently (I mostly keep in touch with IM and e-mail) but I only used to spend about £5/month.

What is it about the US that keeps the price of mobile phones high?

Comment Re:Https as commonly employed isn't enough (Score 1) 227

It depends who needs to trust who.

If only the server is authenticated, then the client knows it it talking to the right person and both ends know that the channel is secure, assuming the client is verifying the certificate correctly.

In the Facebook case this is enough because the client will then authenticate using its username and password over the secure channel so that the server knows who it's talking to.

The bigger problem on the web is that many sites only use https for the login process so anyone able to interfere with the preceding unencrypted conversation would be able to present a fake login screen which did not use https or directed the credentials somewhere else entirely.

Assuming that the whole public key infrastructure is working correctly, SSL does prevent MITM attacks when only one end is authenticated. Assuming no-one has been able to obtain a forged certificate for the server and the server's private key has not been compromised, the client is able to be sure that it's speaking directly to the server. The server knows nothing about the client but generally this isn't a problem because once the client is sure that it has a secure connection to the server, it can authenticate itself to the server securely using another method such as a password.

The Internet

British ISPs Embracing Two-Tier Internet 305

Barence writes "Britain's leading ISPs are attempting to construct a two-tier internet, where websites and services that are willing to pay are thrust into the 'fast lane,' while those that don't are left fighting for scraps of bandwidth or even blocked outright. Asked directly whether ISP TalkTalk would be willing to cut off access completely to BBC iPlayer in favor of YouTube if the latter was prepared to sign a big enough cheque, TalkTalk's Andrew Heaney replied: 'We'd do a deal, and we'd look at YouTube and we'd look at BBC and we should have freedom to sign whatever deal works.' Britain's biggest ISP, BT, meanwhile says it 'absolutely could see situations in which some content or application providers might want to pay BT for a quality of service above best efforts.' PC Pro asks if it's the end of the net as we know it."

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