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Comment Makes Perfect Sense (Score 1) 203

I would never trust anything I own and absolutely need to work to an electronic lock. Not that I'm a luddite ... far from it ... but because I know what can go wrong, and in some circumstances absolutely nothing can be allowed to go wrong. So no electronic locks on my home's entry doors, and no home safes with electronic locks (includes gun safes).

Hotels ... I can see huge advantages for a hotel to have electronic locks on rented rooms. They will also have staff who can defeat said locks if need be. Downsides? Could be a problem if fire breaks out, but as I understand it (my ex worked for a Federal Prison System) a proper electronic lock must by law fail open, so that would be the type found in hotels.

The only exemptions are for prison locks, which fail closed, and those models are subject to strict controls, only available to bona fide law enforcement or prison purchasing agents, not the general public.

In this case the locks probably hadn't failed so much as were programmed to operate in a closed manner. I wonder if (voluntarily) cutting power could have opened the doors? That would take some effort ... almost certainly the hotel had backup generators that would have to be defeated, so definitely a job for the hotel support staff, but from there it should result in open doors.

Comment Re:Security expert, or blowhard? (Score 1) 377

No they aren't. But when we have multiple cases of experts doing non-expert things in one big row combined with incredible unluckiness I'm still questioning if they are an expert.

To be clear this security expert:
a) left a laptop in his car
b) left it in plain view / didn't know someone knew he left his laptop in his car
c) left the car unlocked
d) had no encryption on his laptop
e) actually got his laptop stolen (which by extension makes people wonder if he's the unluckiest man in the world, or if he's done this more often and just got hit by probabilities)

Any one of those things is dumb, any 2 or 3 things probably as well. But this case shows an epic pattern of failure for an "expert" to make.

The Calgary Sun said he was a "computer expert". You don't believe everything you read in any of the numerous Canadian city "Sun" newspapers. For all we know, the reporter asked him if he was familiar with computers, he answered yes, and they ran with it.

Comment Re:Security expert, or blowhard? (Score 1) 377

I once owned a truck that I bought with just an ignition key (GM, so two keys needed). I never did bother to remove the glove box lock and pay the $50 the locksmith wanted to create a new key which would work for the door.

For eight years, I never once locked the truck. I parked it numerous times overnight in some rather dubious locations (dive bar parking lots, for example) and no-one ever took a single thing from inside that vehicle.

I also own a convertible. You never lock a convertible; thieves will just knife the top to get in. So as of today it's been about seven years without ever being locked.

Now, I wouldn't leave a laptop, or anything tempting like a shopping bag with new items in it, on the front seat. For some reason people do get inside and rifle through it; change disappears from time to time. Now, the trunk isn't big, but it works just fine, and that's where valuables go if I leave it unattended.

Comment Re:More likely scenario (Score 1) 377

More likely is that the laptop got converted for cash at a pawn shop and later bought in good faith, which means he's humiliated a poor girl who had nothing to do with the theft.

Without knowing the time scales involved, that seems very unlikely. Unless he waited weeks to do this.

Also, pretty sure all the savvy thieves use Craigslist these days, not pawn shops. But either way, the chances of a buyer pouncing very quickly is pretty low unless he was selling at a very steep discount.

The "more likely" claim really makes me pause.... why would you say this? Does this have something to do with the alleged thief being female?

Nobody in Canada uses Craigslist much. Kijiji rules that space.

Comment Re:More likely scenario (Score 1) 377

More likely is that the laptop got converted for cash at a pawn shop and later bought in good faith, which means he's humiliated a poor girl who had nothing to do with the theft.

In which case the pawn shop owner would be in trouble. Many locales have laws to make it harder to fence stolen property; if she bought it off of Craig's List cheap it would be hard to make a good faith argument.

In Canada you need to provide Photo ID to pawn anything, the Pawn Shop must record the information related to the transaction, and that record is submitted electronically to Police once a week, where it is checked against police reports of theft. Plus, it's a common sight to see detectives visiting all the Pawn Shops in the city; it's a routine part of their duty.

Comment Re:'computer expert'. (Score 1) 377

This took place in Canada. In Quebec, Ontario, and any other province with a provincial police presence, you report federal crimes to either the local or provincial police - not directly to the RCMP (feds), except where the feds have jurisdiction (airports, etc).

Context matters - and in this case, the context is that it's not in the USA.

You must be from Ontario; people there like to speak for all of Canada, despite not knowing a thing about anywhere outside of Ontario. The list of "any other province with a provincial police" would be the two you cited and Newfoundland.

In the other seven provinces and two territories that comprise Canada, you can either form and fund your own local police (whether rural or urban), or you can contract with the RCMP to provide local policing. (Not having one or the other is not an option).

For example in the province of British Columbia, municipal forces are the rarity, not the norm. Outside of the City of Vancouver, chances are you will be dealing with RCMP everywhere you go. In Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and Alberta, even Rural Municipalities may have their own local police force.

However, in every province and territory of Canada, including Ontario, Quebec, and Newfoundland, it is the RCMP whom are charged with dealing with cyber crime. So you may still contact them should the theft of a laptop result in certain crime(s) that are not simply the original crime of theft.

Specifically, in this particular case, the computer owner is in Calgary, Alberta. Calgary has a municipal police force.

Comment Not in a million years ... (Score 2) 244

Advertisers who choose quality over lowest common denominator? Never going to happen. If that industry had any ... and I mean any ... ethics, there would not be late night ads for copper pots on TV. Or anywhere. There would be no way to get fake Viagra; you'd have to get the real thing from a real pharmacy with a real prescription from a real doctor. And the web would not have driven people into ad blockers in the first place.

Let's not forget, Hosts files have been around for ... I don't even remember when I installed one for the first time, but it was around the time you could get broadband instead of dialup for the first time. So let's say 25 years. Probably longer, but I can only talk of my own experience.

Yet, few people actually installed them. It was the banal drivel wallpapering every website on the planet that drove ordinary people to seek out simple browser add-ons that kill ads. And it was the demand for those plugins that got developers to build them in the first place. The industry has no-one to blame but themselves.

And now we get this "it wasn't us, it was the other guy" plea from them to please let them serve us ads. Pretty please. We're sorry.

Well, they're sorry all right, but not in the meaning they intended.

Comment Re:Govt wants free money (Score 1) 159

It's not about list prices, it's about actually selling the product at price $XX.

In Canada you have to offer and sell the product at some price that will form the basis of a regular price. It has nothing to do with MSRP, which is a legal construct, not an actual price.

If you have product A that you price at $19.99 you have to show you actually sold inventory at $19.99 and that you offered the product for sale and actually made sales for the majority of the time (eg more than 183 days a year, for example) the product was available. You could then offer the product for (say) $17.95 and call it a Sale or discounted price.

SEARS Canada (a somewhat different company than SEARS-Roebuck) was famously fined because they had too many sales, almost continuously, on certain products so that it was deemed that the Sale prices were effectively the actual regular prices. It's a False Advertising issue, not an MSRP issue.

Comment Consumer Reports knows shite (Score 1) 268

I don't know whether the new Macbook Pro is a good computer or a bad computer; I've never seen one and won't be replacing my current laptop for quite a while yet.

But, I do have some expertise in a few other fields. And I have to say that with regard to non-computer equipment I know like the back of my hand that Consumer Reports evaluates ... well ... they haven't a clue. They recommend junk and hate excellent product. I don't know why, but they do.

So, whether they love the new Macbook Pro or hate it, or lay somewhere in between, is irrelevant to me. They have shown themselves to earn near-zero credibility in my books. Which leaves me with coming to my own conclusions, and I'm OK with that.

Comment Re:Notorious Markets List (Score 1) 82

If you live in Canada, you already are :). It drives the US nuts that we can (or used to be able to?) burn copies of CDs for free for friends & family, for research etc.

Apparently lots of torrent sites are partially-based in Canada as well. http://iipdigital.usembassy.go...

In Canada, you cannot, and never have been legally able to, burn CDs for friends and family.

The Copyright was (prior to it's last revision, which is what you are referring to) clear; you could only make copies of music yourself for your own use. Distribution in any form, which includes making a "mix tape" and giving it to your mother, is illegal and always has been in Canada.

Comment Re:Symbolic (Score 3, Informative) 82

Two decades after the original artist's/etc demise would be fair. Perpetual copyright doesn't protect dead originators, and to make copyright perpetual changes it dramatically.

Maybe reconsider perpetual compensation? a perpetual right to prevent modification and ensure attribution, but to be paid forever? How do we reconcile this?

And corporations need to be a different case.

Music copyrights have nothing to do with the artist, therefore there is no correlation with the artist's lifetime. All music copyrights are owned by the Label (and RIAA member, if in the USA) which, as a corp[oration, has a theoretically infinite lifetime.

Passing the copyrights to the Label is a condition of every record contract. As an artist, either you are published, have a record release and have zero copyrights, or your are unpublished, unreleased, unknown and own them all, but no-one cares. There is such a thing as the Independent record release, which is an attempt to retain the copyrights by the artist(s), but you won't find those CDs for sale in most retailers or available as digital files on most mainstream download sites.

Comment Old News (Score 1) 91

Organized Crime has long infiltrated the Waste Management industry. This is hardly news; when it comes to recycling (where companies are paid to dispose of whatever) it seems obvious that you can collect the cash and dispose of nothing = profit, especially since the fees are set up in the first place to guarantee profits if you actually do dispose of the waste properly.

The "Mob" has been caught disposing of Dioxins by putting a quart here, a quart there, in tankers of gasoline, which is then distributed to stations across a region (NorthEast US, Montreal, etc) so that your wife and daughter can pump them into their subcompacts and burn it away, obviously being exposed to a Cancer risk while doing so. What makes anyone think a little lead from a CRT is going to give them pause?

Comment Re:Because Use Cases (Score 1) 766

'And with ten or fifteen open tabs it eventually becomes sluggish as hell.'

I don't think that's the standard use case for testing, nor should it be. What the hell are you doing with that many tabs open.

"Unfortunately, modern browsers are so stupid that they reload all the tabs when you restart them. Which takes ages if you have a hundred of tabs."

Again, good lord. Hundreds of tabs? What are you even doing.

As to refresh, I think that's become a user expectation that you see the most recent information when you pull up a tab. Having to manually do it isn't something a standard user is going to do.

Maybe what you're looking for is to have 'power user' settings in the browser, so you can keep your hundred tabs open.

I normally have perhaps 30~40 pages live (I don't like tabs, I prefer new windows) when surfing in an ordinary fashion. From time to time, I might even get up to a hundred. My browser does work fine, or to put it another way, roughly the same as when there are only one or two pages open.

What am I doing? Simple ... I refuse to be interrupted by crap. So when I am reading a news story (for example) I stay on that news story page and read the whole thing, then close the window (or tab, if you prefer). And if there is a phrase or event mentioned on that news page, I copy and paste into a new browser window to search that term and have it ready to refer to next, or later, or whenever.

Similarly when I'm researching a topic, I stay on the page I'm reading, and again will probably have a number of new pages rendered and ready for when I am good and ready to read them, in their entirety, as topics, phrases, pdf's, links, etc come into the picture.

Honestly I can't understand why someone would NOT have dozens of pages open at the same time. What do you do ... jump to a new page and leave the one you were supposedly interested in reading?

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