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Comment Potentially not winable... (Score 1) 238

The plate readers represent a two edged sword which likely is a far more power tool for committing crime than it will help enforcing the law. Passively scanning cars will create a register for when a car passed a spot allowing criminals easy ways to match cars with for homes, owners and family members, letting criminals do passive and active planning of potential victims.

We cannot make the readers go away, so we would need to do something with the plates instead. This could technically be done as the plate could be replaced with a unique id through algorithm instead, allowing a constantly changing id together with a timestamp.

The driver may find the car using the alarm system, so the owner does not require the plate.

However the plate is also used by citizens to report on cars, such as when speeding, having an accident where the driver try to get away, when there is suspicious behaviour, and so on.

The problem is if pedestrians loose their ability to report on on cars. Unless we can find a good way for pedestrians to report particular cars without requiring them to have special reading devices, we cannot move away from plates and corresponding plate readers.

We may however make laws prohibiting the accumulation of such data without legitimate reason.

Comment Re:We've always be slow... (Score 4, Interesting) 411

It was not simply washing the hands, but washing the hands with a chlorinated solution. I heard multiple alternative versions over the years - some wanting to use it to state the new theory did not get accepted until the old doctors died out, and so on. Others pointing to the scientific process - which is probably a more correct reason for the delay...: The 1st "theory" was that the chlorinated solution scared the evil spirits so the spirit would not jump from the previous patient to the next.... which was of course rejected flat by the lion share of the established doctors. The theory had to go through a large process to say why washing the hands with a chlorinated solution in a way doctors accepted, and by then some had already completely rejected the source due to the original reference to the supernatural cause...

Comment Re:Sounds like an ad (Score 1) 316

The sources are always relevant - I do not really believe in "unbiased" sources - I recommend always checking news with multiple different sources who got different interest in a case. In this case the sources are ZDNet and Microsoft.

In this case the story give a different picture to what is claims
1. "Italian city dump OpenOffice for Microsoft After Four years"
Quotes from the text:
1.a) "we decided we had to keep a hybrid solution, using the two systems at the same time."
1.b) "Between 2011 and 2014, the municipality of Pesaro, in the Marche region, trained up its 500 employees to use OpenOffice, " (sentence continue to c)
1.c) "however, last year the organization decided to switch back to Microsoft and use its cloud productivity suite Office 365."

From the above we can clearly see the headline is biased, The original Microsoft Office package was also dropped alongside Open Office, and all this was likely part of a completely new deployment since the 2011-2014 time-frame indicate the baseline was Microsoft Windows 7 which had mainstream support only to January 13, 2015.

A more unbiased headline would have been something like: "Italian city decide to migrate from hybrid Microsoft Office and Open Office to a new web based Microsoft Office solution".

Next topic - they did choose to use Microsoft Office 365 rather than move to for example LibreOffice during the current deployment apparently due to an evaluation of Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), but then the question is how that TCO was calculated?

It should already be apparent to everyone that the TCO cost of the previous solution was due to their "Hybrid" problems. This cost would have disappeared regardless of choice as long as they did not keep a hybrid approach. And does it list the cost of having a web-based solution - there is not even any mention of potential downtime due to
1) no local access to internet
2) failures of internet providers
3) failures of the external service provider

All 3 appear to cause 100% downtime for the 500 employees in question compared with local install. Assuming 1% downtime and 99% up-time, and a 8 hour day, it might represent 4.6 minutes a day for each worker, or 4.79 full workdays each workday - is it more reasonable to assume zero downtime like the article that talk about TCO?

And what about additional lag time of constant work with web-app compared with locally installed software, - x milliseconds lost every minute times number of employees?

I would not actually be surprised a local install of Microsoft Office 2013 would have a lower TCO than Microsoft Office 365 in a lot of companies despite the higher licensing cost.

Comment Re:Confessed? (Score 1) 244

Confessed to have posted the information is one thing, confessed to that action as a crime is another. Imagine for an instance to replace "Popcorn time", with "Bit torrent". That I made an article of how to use Bit Torrent, for instance for downloading software such as Linux - is completely legal.

I have not used Popcorn time, but I believe it is used for much more than downloading illegal movies. For instance if I made an instructional movie for how to use the computer creative commons and made it available on Popcorn time, then posted instructions for how to use Popcorn time to see the instructional movie, I believe it should be legal. In this case, is it not also legal if I simply make the instructions for how to use the application as long as I do not use illegal content in my instructions?

Comment Two edged sword... (Score 1) 562

What always miss from these arguments is that such a tool is a two edged sword. If the government can do it, so can likely all other governments too, and it does not stop there. I know, you got nothing to hide for authorities, corrupted officials or not. Sooner or later you hear corrupt officials used their position to obtain and sell information such your vacation plan to criminals robbing homes, insurance companies about confidential information of your health, and so on...

Comment Re:Legalities - should be confidential (Score 1) 301

The work the police is doing does not automatically enter public domain, there is supposed to be clearence levels involved. Unrestricted, restricted and Confidential is the highest level. (Secret and Top secret only apply to army). When the police is to deal with special cases such as robbery, violence, etc, it is supposed to be a confidential case in mostly all cases.

Now the police face freedom of information requests, and the article is talking about the cost of evaluating what can be and cannot be relased - it is too expensive to go through and evaluate all the material, and they face a request to release ALL footage!

The most obvious policy should of course be
1) blanket requests cannot be made - all freedom request should be specific and for a purpose for the freedom request to be evaluated
2) the release should take into account who file the request. It is very different if a person unrelated with a case request the footage or if the person in the footage/his lawyer request the information. Confidential information may be given to the later two, whereas others only should get confidential information under specific conditions and all groups should likely sign confidentiality agreements if confidential infrormation is handed out. If the information is not viewed as confidential however, the information rules apply accordingly.

In other words, the way it is supposed to work we should track down and arrest someone who disclose confidential information obtained under a freedom of information request.

Comment A much better method exist already and is even in (Score 2) 364

Why have the car tell, when it is better to have the lightcross itself tell? The low tech solution is to simply show the countdown for when the light will change on the lightcross itself. You see a large counter sign the size of the traffic light triplet stating it will change in 37 seconds. You know it inmediately if you will reach it in time so no need to stress - you know it if you need to slightly increase the speed too, as well as you would know if you cannot make it.

I have already seen this system used extensively and it seem like a great success! The only reason you might not have heard is that the place it has been used for several years already is Havana, Cuba... I do not think they have the method patented, so go see and learn ;)

Comment Re:But that's not the real problem. (Score 1) 1651

You are wrong here on both - requiring a helmet do absolutely discourage bicycling, and particularly the one mentioned here about sharing bikes in crowded places. Imagine you get to a stand and see there are a bike available - there is a 30 minutes walk, or 4 minutes ride on a bicycle to get to your destination, but did you bring a helmet? Or maybe you think they need to have every size helmets available on every stop?

And you want the negligence drivers away, not force the bicyclists to hold the responsibility in the event of accident, Do not give the car the excuses like - but you did not wear a helmet so its your fault - or something silly - the stronger is always responsible for the weaker, meaning:
- Drivers of motorized vehicles are responsible for pedestrians, bikers as well as motorbikes.
- Motorbikes are responsible for bikers and pedestrians.
- Bikers are responsible for walkers.

Just increase the penalty for the negligent drivers that cause accidents - imagine the threat of having your license revoked should you act negligent towards bikers and those walking. I bet it would change the awareness of the drivers at once!

Comment Re:Here are a couple of ways, but... (Score 1) 440

I did not pay attention to the files being on windows which most likely mean NTFS. Everything should still be possible using a linux livecd except for the last command to make hardlinks... I do not believe NTFS have anything like that, it is a feature of linux file systems such as ext2/ext3/ext4.

Comment Here are a couple of ways, but... (Score 1) 440

This gives an sha256sum list of all files assuming you are in linux and writing it to list.sha256 in the base of your home folder:

find /<folder_containing_data> -type f -print0 | xargs -0 sha256sum > ~/list.sha256

You may replace sha256sum with another checksum routine if you want, such as. sha512sum, md5sum, sha1sum, or other preference.

now sort the file:

sort ~/list.sha256 > ~/list.sha256.sorted

(notice, this create a sorted list according to the sha256 value but with the path to the file as well. Assuming you would want to manually check some lines, this might be helpful, but if you only want the machine to check there is really no need to include the file and path data in the output giving a much smaller duplicate list file. )
without paths the command could be something like

cat ~/list.sha256 | awk '{print $1}' | sort > ~/list.sha256.chksum.sorted

You could now find duplicates by doing one of the following:

uniq -c ~/list.sha256.chksum.sorted | while read count chksum; do if [ $count != 1 ]; then grep ^$chksum ~/list.sha256 >> ~/list.duplicates; fi ; done

or in the first case

cat ~/list.sha256.sorted | awk '{print $1}' | while read count chksum; do if [ $count != 1 ]; then grep ^ $chksum ~/list.sha256 >> ~/list.duplicates; fi ; done

Now with the list of duplicates come the important question... Does meta data of the files such as in which path it is, date and time, file permissions etc matter to you?

Regardless I would usually recommend doing a binary comparison of the files as well to fully ensure the files are the same, before merging...

The quick and dirty removal of duplicates would be

oldchecksum='' ; cat ~/list.duplicates | while read checksum currpath; do if [ "$oldchecksum" == "$checksum" ]; then rm "$currpath"; else oldchecksum = $checksum ; fi; done

If wanting to preserve meta data, then the best way might be to use hard links to the original maintaining setting the hardlink to date and time of duplicate.

oldchecksum='' ;oldpath=''; cat ~/list.duplicates | while read checksum currpath; do if [ "$oldchecksum" == "$checksum" ]; then mv "$currpath" "$currpath".dup; ln "$oldpath" "$currpath"; touch "$currpath" --reference="$currpath".dup ; chmod "$currpath" --reference="$currpath".dup ; chown "$currpath" --reference="$currpath".dup ; rm "$currpath".dup ; else oldchecksum = $checksum ; oldpath=$currpath; fi; done

Do note that I did not test any of these commands and I might have missed something that make these commands eat important data too... Check on something unimportant before trying!

Comment Re:Of all the priorities... (Score 1) 328

It believe it is a good priority...
The question is - is it good enough for most? - assuming it is, then advanced users who want more features can get it. The same happens with music players, software to read documents such as pdf files and so on all the time. Distros don't tend to install the most feature-rich version, but what is good enough for most, and let it be your choice to upgrade if you so desire something more.
It is much more irritating to replace a massive framework with a lighter one than the opposite.

I have not used Xfce since the time I used Gentoo now, but I used to like XFCE a lot! I am using Gnome2 now, and cant say I have decided yet what desktop I will go with going forward. There where some issues with Xfce when I used it years ago, Gnome2 has issues to - I would for example like to use menus on the left/right for more screen real-estate like I used to in Xfce, however I have found Gnome2 to handle side menus badly. I don't remember anymore what I did not like with Xfce anymore, but hopefully that has been fixed :)

I am a bit surprised Gnome3 is that heavy though as I understood it is more focused on plugins for adding functionality.

Btw. the Debian Net Install is usually what I use for servers, but for desktop I always use CD media - I NEVER use DVD media as it usually add tons of bloat I really prefer not have there.

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