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Submission + - Quicken Bill Pay is No Longer Safe to Use ( 1

Bruce Perens writes: I don't usually make security calls, but when a company makes egregious and really clueless security mistakes, it's often the case that the only way to attract their attention and get the issue fixed is to publicize it. This one is with Quicken Bill Pay, a product of Metavante (not Intuit). It's from personal observation rather than an expert witness case, and the company has been unresponsive through their customer support channel.

Comment Abandoning Time-Worn Processes Leads to Atrophy (Score 5, Insightful) 155

Scientists determined that those people who made use of machine washing rather than hand washing had diminished hand strength and neurological motor communication necessary for fine motor control. Seamstresses who bought thread rather than using the spinning jenny were similarly impaired. But worst off were teamsters who used the internal combustion trucks rather than teams of horses and used forklifts and other mechanical devices rather than loading their vehicles by hand. Their overall body strength was much reduced.

Comment Re:"Human Colleague"... Nope, You Just Don't Get I (Score 1) 407

Clarke did very little writing on robot brains.

Um, I'll have to assume that you weren't around for April, 1968, when the leading AI in popular culture for a long, long, time was introduced in a Kubrick and Clarke screenplay and what probably should have been attributed as a Clarke and Kubrick novel. And a key element of that screenplay was a priority conflict in the AI.

Comment Re:"Human Colleague"... Nope, You Just Don't Get I (Score 1) 407

Well, you've just given up the argument, and have basically agreed that strong AI is impossible

Not at all. Strong AI is not necessary to the argument. It is perfectly possible for an unconscious machine not considered "strong AI" to act upon Asimov's Laws. They're just rules for a program to act upon.

In addition, it is not necessary for Artificial General Intelligence to be conscious.

Mind is a phenomenon of healthy living brain and is seen no where else.

We have a lot to learn of consciousness yet. But what we have learned so far seems to indicate that consciousness is a story that the brain tells itself, and is not particularly related to how the brain actually works. Descartes self-referential attempt aside, it would be difficult for any of us to actually prove that we are conscious.

Comment Re:"Human Colleague"... Nope, You Just Don't Get I (Score 1) 407

You're approaching it from an anthropomorphic perspective. It's not necessary for a robot to "understand" abstractions any more than they are required to understand mathematics in order to add two numbers. They just apply rules as programmed.

Today, computers can classify people in moving video and apply rules to their actions such as not to approach them. Tomorrow, those rules will be more complex. That is all.

Comment Re:"Human Colleague"... Nope, You Just Don't Get I (Score 4, Insightful) 407

Agreed that a Robot is no more a colleague than a screwdriver.

I think you're wrong about Asimov, though. It's obvious that to write about theoretical concerns of future technology, the author must proceed without knowing how to actually implement the technology, but may be able to say that it's theoretically possible. There is no shortage of good, predictive science fiction written when we had no idea how to achieve the technology portrayed. For example, Clarke's orbital satellites were steam-powered. Steam is indeed an efficient way to harness solar power if you have a good way to radiate the waste heat, but we ended up using photovoltaic. But Clarke was on solid ground regarding the theoretical possibility of such things.

Comment VMWare is a GPL Violator (Score 2) 32

VMWare is a GPL violator and got off of its most recent case on a technicality. Any Linux developer can restart the case.

The Linux foundation is sort of like loggers who claim to speak for the trees. Their main task is to facilitate the exploitation of Open Source rather than contribution to it.

Comment Re: Victim Blaming? (Score 1) 113

So what do you propose instead? Keep in mind that blaming the accused (before evidence or judgement is given) is basically as wrong as blaming the accuser. How do you express skepticism or withhold judgement in a way you see as correct?

As you say it's "basically as wrong" to go one way or the other. I already answered this above, but to recap: What I propose is nothing more radical than adhering to the ordinary presumptions a court is required to make, for example, in a criminal process. That is to say that a) the accused is entitled to the (rebuttable) presumption of innocence and b) the accuser(s) (and indeed all witnesses) are entitled to the (rebuttable) presumption of honest testimony. As I wrote above, the process can be thought of as a resolution of the contradiction thus set up.

If there is relevant evidence tending to speak to a client's guilt, one seeks to exclude it on the basis that it is unlawfully obtained; hearsay; tendency or coincidence evidence; &c. Bearing in mind the restrictions due to the credibility rule, one seeks to impugn the reliability or character of the witness; to show the testimony is self-serving; &c. And of course, where possible, to show that the evidence led is demonstrably false. However, the mere fact that evidence that tends to show the guilt of an accused is not a reason to presume that evidence is false (and then have to prove, beyond reasonable doubt, its veracity). The point of the presumption of innocence, after all, is that the state lead evidence to rebut it.

Now as private citizens reaching mere opinions, we need not, of course, be anywhere near as punctilious as a court, much less need we work to a criminal standard of proof (my opinions are held on the 'balance of probabilities'). However bearing in mind the proper presumptions as we consider the limited evidence available should stop us jumping to hasty conclusions either than an accused is guilty or an accuser a liar.

What's the right thing to say when one of your friends states that either the accuser or the accused has done Horrible Things?

How about: "You know I really envy your confidence in coming to quick conclusions with very little direct evidence." ;) Being the contrary bastard that I am, I often begin arguing the opposite of any position put to me. TBH, I'm a bit self-centred, probably you'd get on better with people if you just go along with the tribal prejudices of your friends.

Comment Re: Victim Blaming? (Score 1) 113

A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. --Prov 15:1

It's amazing how judgemental you can be when you phrase it kindly :)

Yes, I was left with an uneasy feeling that this might be going on here .. but as I said above, I withdraw. Looking at the totality of your contributions I find nothing to persuade me from the presumption ;) that you have anything but the best intentions in mind.

Your basic point, if I understand you, is the all too common to rush to blame the victim, even where blame is clothed in the mantle of "scepticism," (e.g. "I'm not saying you're lying, but I won't believe you until you prove you are not lying") is a wrong and we should guard against expressing our doubt in that way. It would certainly be intolerable where the accusations are well founded (which we cannot know until the evidence is examined), and as against OP assertion that "[v}ictim blaming happens far less than false claims," one rather suspects the exact opposite to be the case.

Comment Re: Victim Blaming? (Score 1) 113

If you lead with sympathy, you're good. If you lead with accusations, then you're bad.

A problem, I think, is that too many people assume the presumption of innocence we must extend to an accused, involves a corollary presumption of guilt against the veracity of the accuser. That is not so. Someone making a complaint is entitled to the rebuttable presumption that their accusation is made in good faith, just as the person against whom the complaint is raised is entitled to a presumption of innocence.

The "process" --and this clearly applies to a curial process, but arguably it ought also apply to an investigative one --might be understood as a process of resolving the contradiction, by reference to the available evidence, between the two presumptions reason (or law) requires us to make.

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