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Comment Reminds me of an EVE online saga a few years ago (Score 1) 216

One faction "A" who were allies with a smaller faction "B", got one of their accounts hacked (or forums) by A's rival "C". One of those was A bitching about how small and insignificant B was to some other allies.

So in the forums, C posted an excerpt of that conversation. Leaders of A panicked and decided that to come out ahead, they should just post their own logs of that conversation, which was apparently worse as it went on. Of course, things didn't look good and other groups got pissed off with A.
Turns out that "C" didn't have much more than just the excerpt but "A" ended up looking worse because of their own full disclosure of the convi.

I'm guessing that with the info that Snowden has, this isn't the case for the NSA and they can confirm he has much more, so they want to dump the info first. (But if they didn't know for sure, it would be a funny likeness.)

Comment Details of the backdoor (Score 1) 576

'linus' is an alias for 'root' on all systems running the kernel since Windo...err, Linux 3.11.
Password for said alias is 'root' (some of the backdoor-accessing programs don't accept blank passwords).

Never know, since it's not possible to look for such backdoors, unless it's open source.

And even IF it was, you'd have to worry about Trusting Trust.

(mostly sarcasm.)

Comment Why is this news? And obvious limitation. (Score 1) 520

Discovery Channel already covered this option, or maybe one of the BBC documentaries. And instead of saying stupid things like "feel each other" they spoke about the "long term gravitational effect, however miniscule it would be" - that's what would slowly nudge the asteroid from its existing path and hopefully not into us.

The massive limitation (no pun intended) is that the asteroid in question needs to be detected when it's really really really far away, to give enough time to
a) launch a spaceship designed for this,
b) have it reach the asteroid and then
c) still have enough time/distance for the gravitational effect of the ship to affect the asteroid significantly enough to have it adequately deviate from its path.

While it's the most realistic option from the perspective of current space technology, it's only likely to be useful for asteroids which we already know are likely to hit many many years from now. It would have been more useful to give some sort of indication of time/distance required to actually have it work, relative to the mass and velocity of likely asteroids.

Comment Re:So we are to believe (Score 2) 135

Examples include a pacemaker that can be tuned remotely, ...

Fear your pacemaker!!! People with heart problems will now have an increased risk of death!!!

Uh. Well you know what I mean. Fear!!!

I think "death by wifi enabled pacemaker" is most likely. It was covered previously, so now it's just a matter of time and effort for someone actually do it. Well, it's also required that someone with a pacemaker is hated enough by someone else who has access to get the serial number, etc. and then go through with murdering him/her or find someone else with the skills and inclination. That reduces your population of potential perpetrators.

Is it possible this will happen? Yes.
In the next 24 months? Yes.
Will it be found or proved? Probably not.

Comment Re:not to rain on anyone's parade.... (Score 2) 271

To make things more ambiguous (along the GPs point), "Interstellar space": Voyager 1 is 17 light hours from us (so under 0.2% the distance to Proxima Centauri). Not sure when or how they decided interstellar space starts before the Oort Cloud (1 ly away).

A justification could be made that astronomically-scaled systems may have plenty of in-between objects that are far enough away to be considered interstellar space. However, when defining an interstellar comet: "At present, an interstellar comet can only be detected if it passes through our solar system, and could be distinguished from an Oort cloud comet by its strongly hyperbolic trajectory (indicating that it is not gravitationally bound to the Sun)." - so if interstellar comets are not interstellar unless they originate from outside the Oort Cloud, I don't see why we consider Voyager 1 even remotely approaching interstellar space when it's still so far from the Oort Cloud.

And reversibly, due to Voyager 1's known one-way trajectory out/away from the Sun, it could be considered not gravitationally bound to the Sun. So is or will be interstellar if not destroyed before.

Anyway, I think 'exiting the heliosphere' is the point of the article. 'Interstellar space' is a sensationalist term in the headline.

Comment Re:How may times can Voyager leave the solar syste (Score 2) 271

well..."The Solar System consists of the Sun and its planetary system of eight planets, their moons, and other non-stellar objects." So that happened a while ago.

Between the solar system and interstellar space is the heliosphere (which encompasses the solar system, bordered/demarcated by the heliopause).

Comment Re:13.3 billion in one direction? (Score 4, Informative) 105

Would the distance between the two galaxies be 26.6 billion years and longer than the age of the universe?

Good point: Yes and No.

Would it happen, yes, already has: If the universe is 93 billion light years in diameter, it is obviously possible to to find a galaxy 26.6 billion light years away but it should not be older than 13.7 billion years.

Because 13.3 billion light years away vs 13.3 billion years ago are not the same in the "Expanding universe" theory. The summary says "the galaxy is 13.3 billion light years away" - which makes it not as old as that statement implies --- imagine an early universe 1 billion light years across, with 2 galaxies forming near the edge diametrically opposite each other. They could now be 93 billion light years apart from each other but they would still be slightly younger than this one (MACS0647-JD). Similarly, it's possible that this galaxy could have been formed 12 billion years ago and has since moved relatively or "apparently" further away to 13.3 billion light years. 1.3 billion light years in 1.3 billion years in an expanding universe doesn't seem impossible since the universe is already larger (93 billion light years) than it is old (13.7 billion years).

The article didn't explain how they've correlated distance with age. Doppler shift?

The "No" part to your question, and the part which makes some of my answer wrong, is for observable:
There would also be the implication that what is "observed" can not be older than 13.7 billion years so you would need to wait another 13.3 billion years to observe the 13.3 billion year-old galaxy **at** 26.6 billion light years away.

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