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Submission + - BrowserStack compromised? (lastbuild.com) 3

algofoogle writes: While not yet confirmed to be a security breach, customers of BrowserStack have apparently received a facetious email claiming the service is shutting down. The language hints at a disgruntled employee or nefarious user, alleging that aspects of the Terms of Service are false, while also revealing apparently-sensitive internal information. Whether coincidental or in response to the email, BrowserStack.com is currently offline, stating that "we're performing some maintenance at the moment".

Comment Re:Males want to be Alpha Males. (Score 1) 823

I agree with much of your comment, but I am a mite frustrated with the assumed gender differences. Granted, there are populations of male nerds who have less than stellar reputations for good reason, but nerd arrogance isn't an exclusively male tendency. I've seen it in women, and as a female nerd I hereby assert and confess that I had more than my share of nerd arrogance once upon a time, especially as a computer science undergraduate. Even now I think back on the abusive ways I communicated and the walls I inadvertently put up that blocked genuine collaboration and collegiality, and I wince. 12 years later, I've worked long and hard on cultivating compassion and humility in my personality and have seen incalculably valuable return on that investment.

There may well be a positive correlation between nerd arrogance and what emerges as "male" from socialized (and unfortunately binary) gender differences, but in my opinion there is utterly insufficient data to confirm that statistically, so I'd prefer to stick with the "attitude of arrogance and superiority among nerds" as the question at hand instead of speculating about the gender correlation. In fact, your own anecdote undercuts your speculation by explicitly attributing the difference between computer science and jazz to the nature of the field instead of the gender ratio:

Jazz Majors were predominantly male too. However, due to the nature of Jazz where the band works as a team, there is less arrogance

The reason I say that there is insufficient data to confidently correlate gender and nerd arrogance is that there are simply too few women in the field, and given the nature of the field, those women who do enter it have already gone through an element of pre-selection. (Note: so have the men in the field.) If the population were considerably more diverse and if the field didn't have an earned reputation as having gender accessibility issues, then I would consider speculating about gender. Until then, it makes more sense to leave it to personality and socialized behaviour.

What do you think?

Comment The obstacle is the lack of a good plan. (Score 1) 601

Despite fully intending to for several years, I haven't actually sat down and devised a coherent plan for key management including an authoritative physical store for the private keys (a problem because in any given day I use 4+ computers and not one of them accesses my email directly), revocation certificates, choosing a reliable keyserver, and choosing a web-based way to distribute my public key to anyone so inclined.

To make matters worse, I'm still in a state of severe digital identity flux (SDIF henceforth). I've been in SDIF for a number of years, and the problem is compounded by the fact that all the commonly used and centralized "identity authorities" (self-styled) are corporate and make me acutely uncomfortable. Until I resolve SDIF and establish the requisite collection of identities, boundaries to each, and reputations, I feel as though what digital assets I have aren't worth the trouble, especially if it's going to be temporary. I don't want to go to all the trouble of planning things (as per paragraph #1) only to then have to revoke and re-issue everything.


Java Apps Have the Most Flaws, Cobol the Least 435

dcblogs writes "An analysis of 745 applications for violations of good architectural and coding practices found that Java applications had the most problems and Cobol-built systems, the least. Some 365 million lines of code were analyzed by Cast Software to assess 'technical debt,' or the cost to fix the violations. Java was calculated at $5.42 per line of code, while Cobol did best at $1.26. Cobol code had the least number of violations because programmers 'have been beating on it for 30 years,' said Cast. As far as Java goes, 'there are many people going into Java now that really don't have strong computer science backgrounds,' said its chief scientist, Bill Curtis."

Yahoo Blocked Emails About Wall Street Protests 311

itwbennett writes "People trying to email information about the Wall Street protests on Monday using Yahoo mail, found themselves on the receiving end of messages from Yahoo claiming 'suspicious activity'. ThinkProgress.org has a YouTube video of users trying to send emails that mention the 'OccupyWallSt.org' web site, which seemed to be the magic phrase to get your email blocked. Via Twitter, Yahoo announced the blockage was now fixed, but 'there may be residual delays.'"

Comment A model for well moderated discourse (Score 2) 1521

Slashdot has been a significant part of the formation of my identity in terms of interest, exploring diverse issues, and exposure to technologies that I wouldn't otherwise have encountered. I thank you, Rob, for everything you've done to create and cultivate this community.

I've been thinking more about Slashdot recently because of my involvement in "Nym-Wars". In at least one place Slashdot was cited as a stellar example of the civility and quality that can be fostered in a community that functions primarily pseudonymously, but also allows anonymity (two things I very much are about). The moderation system in place here is complex (I myself still find it a little confusing) but there is no question that it works. Slashdot is one of the few places where I consider the comments on an article as much (often more) worth reading as the article itself. Obviously my appreciation for this applies to the whole Slashdot community, but I am posting this specifically in recognition of CmdrTaco's influence in shaping the community.

Rob, may everything else you do in the years to come be as interesting and fruitful as your work here! Community and communication are essential, amazing things, and I'm sure your contributions to the world at large are far from over.

Input Devices

Microsoft CEO Says Kinect To Support PCs Eventually 47

Ken writes "Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said that the company will support Kinect for PCs sometime in the future. The motion controller is currently only officially supported for the Xbox 360, although it has been hacked and tweaked to work on pretty much any platform that can be plugged into via a USB port. 'We're trying to move beyond gaming to include the world of socialization, movies, TV, music, and we're trying to make the whole experience accessible to everybody in the family not just the traditional gamer.' When Ballmer was asked, 'Will you plug-in the Kinect to the PC, will you go for that in the near future?' he replied, 'We'll support that in a formal way in the right time and when we've got an announcement to make we'll make it.' Note that this is completely separate from the Kinect-like controller from PrimeSense and Asus." Other readers have tipped related articles about Kinect being used to enable 3D teleconferencing and help drive a small helicopter drone.

Comment Re:Price (Score 1) 459

a lot of the time this can point to patent issues

So what you're saying is that the US patent system is anti-competitive and harmful to consumers?

Thought so.

so if you spend millions/billions developing a microchip, then sell a phone that uses it..

you'd be okay if I just opened up the first phone that rolled off the assembly line and duplicated your chip? then started selling clones for a tenth of what you charge?

that's what happens when there's no [reasonable] patent protection for hardware. see: China.

Comment Re:Price (Score 2) 459

The cheap tablets and handhelds that you can buy everywhere else in the world just aren't in the US. It seems fishy.

a lot of the time this can point to patent issues. there might be chipsets (often the radios or something else fairly narrow) that prevent legitimate US import.

I'm having trouble finding it now, but sometime in the last few years there was a pretty major seizure by Customs in a situation like this. I believe it was related to this, if memory serves.

Comment Re:still dont see (Score 1) 134

Why this is being given such legal scrutiny. Its akin to driving down the street with a tape recorder and parabolic mic, recording whatever conversations people might be having as part of a population density study, and accidentally recording someone in their front yard yelling their cc# into the phone. It should fall under general privacy law: if you dont spend the time/energy to setup encryption of some form, dont expect privacy (same as if you dont try to block peeping toms, or if you go sunbathing nude in your front yard next to the street, dont be surprised to find yourself posted to /b). Even windows warns you now if you try to connect to an unencrypted AP. If anyone should be sued for this, sue the manufacturers that distributed the APs with a default configuration of no encryption and see how well that flies.


What if I sniff all the guests' network traffic in a hotel? (via ARP spoofing or otherwise)

There's certainly no warnings presented in any OS when you plug in ethernet and grab an IP, and the average computer user certainly doesn't know that it's possible to do this.. so, how do you feel about that?


Journal Journal: Rumor: 500 Kin Phones 9

When Microsoft's Kin was released a month ago, it came with the usual sequence of tittilating leaks (project Pink), a swell of coverage leading to liveblogging of the release press conference, and an advertising blitz impressive in its scope. Since it's supposed to be a social phone of course it has numerous fansites including Facebook and Twitter. Of course there's a Wikipe

Comment Re:Hahaha (Score 1) 179

An unmodified, unrestricted Android OS phone would be a selling point in and of itself.

There is, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Android_Dev_Phone - you can buy it directly from Google. Sign up as an Android developer for $25 (one-time fee that gets you access to submit apps for the Market, required to purchase the phone unfortunately). The latest version of the phone is actually just a completely unlocked HTC Magic; it costs $399 from Google (no contract subsidy here obviously.)

If you're interested in a "solution" (only workable to tech savvy folk, really) for from-carrier devices you can pick up any Android device you'd like, root it (attain su via exploits, there are one-click scripts for every popular device) and install whatever OS version you'd like on it. XDA-Developers forum has hundreds of custom Android "ROMs" that have been developed by regular users with no more access than the phone they bought and the Android SDK.

You can install a regular 'vanilla' release of Android OS from source and customize (or not customize) to your heart's content.

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