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Comment Re:The nature of the Trump-fans is pretty obvious (Score 3, Interesting) 224

A Kia that I own with a Trump sticker in Baltimore got vandalized to the tune of $2500 in July. I appreciated the new paintjob, since I have a $100 comp deductible, but the person did it to be a criminal douchebag.

My yard sign has been ripped up 3 times in a Baltimore suburb. I have had dog shit dumped on my lawn 4 or 5 times. Eventually I installed cameras and caught the motherfuckers, who got fined and harassed by the cops, but it was fundamentally a waste of money to deal with the scumbag local Democrats.

Recurrent theme around here, and a number of the houses in the neighborhood have pulled up their signs to avoid the bullshit. Isn't changing how they are voting, though.

So yeah, about those Trump supporters...?

Comment Re:Ancient Aliens (Score 1) 246

People who aren't interested in thinking need the metaphysical window dressing.

Believe it or not, that's a paraphrased Hitler quote, but that doesn't make it wrong.

I don't fault you for your beliefs, but I don't agree with them. I think that once the bioelectricity stops flowing, we cease to be. Anything else would be supernatural. However much I would like to talk to my father again, I don't think it's going to happen. It's not an emotionally satisfying viewpoint, but it is the logical conclusion of my other beliefs.

Comment The fastest, most bang-for-buck fixes (Score 1) 191

Go through your text, and everywhere where it says "password" change it to say "passphrase."

The password-setting step, where you have the user initialize their password, should also say "don't re-use the same passphrase that you use somewhere else." Just say it. (If users want to ignore it, fine. You can't help people who don't want to be helped.)

This doesn't fix all the problems, but it fixes the most, in the smallest amount of time/effort. One of your interns can do all this in a single morning.


After that, make sure you're hashing, but use something already invented for this job rather than trying to figure it out yourself. (This might not be a job for an intern, though I bet it could, at some places.)

Congratulations, your site is now better than the other 99.9%. We'll revisit and update these decisions in a century or two, when you're considered to be better than only about 90%.

Comment Re:The author has a certain level of understanding (Score 1) 191

the majority of respondents understanding that passwords should contain uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers and symbols

Yup. A password under 8-12 characters in length, consisting of a simple dictionary word (with simple digit substitution of a = 4, e = 3, i = !, random capitalization, etc) can be solved by a GPU in less than a second or two. Combine several non-related words together and you might have a fighting chance. Don't even get me started about how many friends and relatives don't use 2-factor auth.

Comment Re:Cognitive Load (Score 1) 191

1) Remembering 15-20 complex passwords is impossible. Not just "not easy", but impossible. You'd have to write them down.

2) You have no idea how many businesses have a black binder with a few pages of passwords in it. If the passwords are written down, they can be stolen, and they can't easily be changed without making consistent changes to your binder of passwords.

3) Shared passwords are not easily managed using a password manager "keychain service"

4) Some computers cannot have the password manager installed on it, ruling out its use (my biggest problem - I have a locked down computer that it is completely impossible to install 3rd party software on)

5) In the event that (4) applies, you could use the manager but then have a bunch of random passwords to remember, compelling you to do (2).

6) Sync between password managers. Not that it's impossible, but it has issues similar to any other networked application. Firewalling, filtering, proxies...

I'm not against the password manager as a concept, but we're a long way away from the common user being able to use it easily.

Comment No, your argument is unadulterated BS (Score 1) 238

Public health is something you need to get familiar with. This debate was settled, at least in the US, back in the early 1900s. You do NOT have an unfettered right to decide what goes into your body and what you do with it. You CAN be compelled to take medications and be vaccinated. Have you ever heard of quarantine, or Typhoid Mary?

In a similar fashion, the state can kill you if the collective polity sees it as necessary.

The fact that you BELIEVE, against the evidence, that you have this right - that makes you unreasonable.

Comment Re:Ancient Aliens (Score 1) 246

If you treat religion as a collection of metaphysics and resultant supernatural phenomena, then sure. It's worse than ancient alien theorists. But religion satisfies a very human need to "know" what happens postmortem. Regardless of it being a pack of lies. Mainly because the people who believe in religion would not permit its falsification by any conventional means. You'd literally have to have a voice from on high - "the voice of God" tell them that it's all bullshit, therefore proving their beliefs out.

Even given my attitudes towards all that, I recognize the comfort that religious beliefs can offer a person and I refuse to give people a hard time about it. The example that comes to mind is the old woman who lost her husband and her whole family and wants to meet them again in an afterlife. Religion - at least the monotheistic forms of same - gives her this. It's what their minds crave and they give in to it without much resistance.

Coming to terms with people being irrational and stupid has been nearly fifty years work for me. I think i've done pretty well at trying to have some self-awareness on this issue.

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If a 6600 used paper tape instead of core memory, it would use up tape at about 30 miles/second. -- Grishman, Assembly Language Programming