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Comment Victor VI (Score 1) 856

My first home computer (I'm an Computer Assisted Instructed alumnus (ASR-33 Teletypes with acoustic modems)) was a Victor-VI 8088, which was purchased by my family by some subterfuge on which I I discovered BBSes on which I played Hack until my visual purple did weird things and my eyes bled. Good times, good times.

Submission + - Level 3 Outage (

kencf0618 writes: Level 3 Communications experienced a major outage today in Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and the U.S. Details were not forthcoming.

Comment International Charter on Space and Major Disasters (Score 1) 142

It hasn't been activated for Malaysia Airlines Flight 307, nor was it activated for Air France Flight 447 in 2009 --one would think that they'd be all over this sort of thing like a cheap suit. Does anyone know why not? A computer search for a debris field that wasn't there during the previous pass would seem like a no-brainer.


Comment Re:being older and wiser... (Score 1) 256

I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now that I have a social life (to paraphrase Bob Dylan). I used to stay in on Amateur Night, but now that I have friends who are variously Maker Faire peeps, artists, and burlesque/new circus performers, I offer my services as roving designated driver just in case someone's Plan B needs a Plan B and just have a wonderful time. The burlesque troupe held a benefit last night, A Derrière Affair --their favourite venue needed new seating! Who am I to stay home?!?


Submission + - CryptoParty

kencf0618 writes: "CryptoParty is a grassroots, worldwide campaign to bring basic cryptography tools such as Tor, public-key encryption, VPN and TrueCrypt to Joe Six-Pack. The spiritual successor to Cypherpunk,,cryptoparty-goes-viral.aspx the DIY movement began as a casual conversation on Twitter with Australian privacy advocate Asher Wolfe about kick-back against recent draconian data retention laws in Australia. The emphasis ranges from the theoretical to the hands-on. Whereas the Berlin CryptoParty was comprised of hard-core hackers (sic), Sydney was more diverse, and the Tennessee after-party featured beer, music, and fire-twirlers."

Comment Operation Delego (Score 2) 284

Of the approximately 600 members of Dreamboard, only 72 were charged, and twenty of them as John Does. According to the Twitched Indictment, Dreamboard gave advice to its members as to which encryption to use, but obviously the Feds aren't shouting from the rooftops about which security protocols they weren't able to break and/or circumvent...

Comment Foxfire, Nextel and Glock (Score 2) 562

One of my colleagues who lives up in the Boise Hills has been feeling a strong urge lately to live closer to the land and further off the grid, if only by buying a goat. I suggested that she start selling halal goat meat to the local Muslim population, such as it is. More seriously, I recommended the Foxfire anthologies --and much to my surprise, she'd never heard of them! There are twelve in the series now, so whether you want to churn your own butter or fix up some bear stew, that's the place to go. It came from the backwash of the '60s, but AFAIK it's still a good DIY resource.

If I was still living in earthquake country (Loma Prieta, 1989) I would still have a Sprint/Nextel phone with the latter's Direct Connect, which is half-duplex. Even if the infrastructure was totally shot, they'd still function directly as walkie-talkies.

I'm in no sense a survivalist, though. If the civil order collapsed I'd probably be standing in line with virtually everyone else. My 9mm Glock 17 wouldn't even come into play --I'm just a geek with a gun.

Still, it's a good idea to stock up one's larder, just in case.


Comment Re:You have to keep buying (Score 1) 507

It also depends on what you're in the market for. I had the opportunity to buy an Idaho for Obama laptop for $300 after the campaign, a serviceable
machine on which I had done much data entry, but I decided against lugging around the so-called fourth screen to coffee houses. (I'm glued
to the screen at home as it is!) But that was then and this is now; I've just ordered an HTC EVO now that every pimply-faced intern and many a
child has a 'droid, and for less than that amount after the rebate. My current cell phone is a utilitarian Motorola i580. It's five months out of Sprint/Nextel contract, my defunct 200 minutes per month service plan was grandfathered in (on average I use 80 minutes per month), and it's basically dial-up compared to any smart phone's cable modem. But then came Android, and for me the smart phone market had gelled; that was my tipping point. It's worth my while nowadays to be on-line whenever I please, given that such mobile access is now a commodity. When that wasn't the case, I was quite happy with my dial-up dumb cell phone. Too, I go a long time between upgrades, so my previous device always becomes Fred Flintstone's device anyway!

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