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Submission + - Messaging with encrypted addresses & metadata (

localoptimum writes: Encryption for email using methods like PGP, smime are still vulnerable to analysis of metadata (who, to whom, when, subject). Warp2 is a project to encrypt the metadata as well. The problem: if the address data is encrypted, how do you know where to send it? The solution is to separate the headers from the messages, and to attempt to decrypt the headers one by one on a shared inbox.

A prototype application is on github using the FreeBSD license, and there is a preprint article. The authors hope that this is useful to someone, as they have full time jobs and don't have time to develop it any more.

Disclaimer: I'm one of the authors :)


Submission + - Teething problems for UK online crime database (

localoptimum writes: With a flourish, in the name of transparency the UK home office has released a database that lets you search for crime statistics by address. It's had more than a few teething problems, such as crime hotspots clustered on top of the address of the police stations that received hoax phone calls, or the stations that processed an arrest rather than the location of the arrest itself.

Another problem is that it doesn't know what Edinburgh is. In fact, it seems woefully ignorant of many towns north of the scottish border.

Overall, one feels that it's just another example of rushed-out technology without forethought. Sure, it would be nice to know an area before you bought a property. But would you report a minor crime if you knew that it would go straight onto the web and reduce the value of the houses on your street? In a few years time, you can count on it that we'll be reading the headline "crime rate drops significantly in the UK".

Comment Re:Rsync? (Score 1) 305

Agreed. I have a desktop and a laptop. Company "helpdesk" blocks everything except ssh and http. Work desktop has firewire800 disk attached to it, running time machine for hourly work backups. I have two bash scripts that I use once per day: "arriveAtWork" and "goHome", containing various rsync commands over ssh. Works great.

Comment The devil is in your question (Score 1) 599

"what practical research do you think the US government should embark upon to get the most return for it's citizens and the world"

That's the problem right there. The government should be funding fundamental scientific research without worrying about technological spin-off and profitability. The reason the US is in this mess, just as in the UK, is that science has become the playground from which wealthy business steals its sweets, except for the last few decades they are also the same people who lobby politicians distributing the sweets. In effect, the taxpayer ends up funding R&D for business with patents and IP slapped all over it, and business is creaming off the brightest talent whilst calling it a "partnership".


Submission + - ESS Site Chosen

localoptimum writes: The site for the European Spallation Source, a next-generation "super microscope" that will use neutrons to study materials, has finally been chosen after years of head-nodding and hand-shaking. The selected site is close to the University town of Lund, in Sweden. This is good news for European scientists of pretty much all disciplines: neutrons are used to study microscopic structures and dynamic processes in proteins, medicines, magnets, crystals, liquids, rocks, you name it. After coming together and collaborating successfully on The Institut Laue Langevin over the last few decades, Europe has allowed the USA to seize the initiative and badly needs construction to start on a new facility like ESS to remain scientifically competitive in the decades to come. Now that the site has been chosen, the only remaining task is to tell your policitical representative to stop claiming expenses for their moats and instead put taxpayers money into the (relatively inexpensive) 1.4-billion Euro ESS project, just like USA have done with SNS. Sweden themselves are putting almost 1/3 of the cash on the table, even in these difficult times, so lets see if the rest of the E.U. leaders can put 3% of GDP where their mouths are and get the ball rolling.

Comment Re:Only in the USA (Score 2, Informative) 393

Well, all that you say is true, but that isn't what I meant.

The money comes from people phoning you. Voicemail is active as default and most people don't disable it.

When you ring someone else and they don't answer, the voicemail picks up and you pay for one minute of a phone call. That is a lot of money when your customers have thousands of missed calls per day. If the other network reciprocates, then the networks have a tidy income and the customers pay to listen to a robot beep at them.

Comment Germany has it (Score 1) 242

The Germans conveniently define an internet connection as "a new kind of radio device". Since TV and Radio devices are chargable by the GEZ then the definition means you have to grab your ankles and think of England... um... I mean Germany.

As a physicist, I tried to point out that an ADSL connection isn't a radio device, but they were more interested in tracking down all the addresses that I'd ever had and trying to charge me for as much shit as possible. They are still sending me letters now that I live in France, the bastards.

Comment Sorry America! (Score 1) 470

No changes on, I can see all these "unranked" books just fine in their ranking system. Not so for the site. Maybe you've hit on the old "SEX=BAD" problem. Another example of this is Grand Theft Auto (steal cars and kill people, totally illegal) being fine for older kids; but when it's found that the main character can engage in a sex game with his lady friend (not illegal for older kids and necessary for the existence of life) the game is banned and then later released x-rated. Go figure.

I blame obese conservative wankers in suits who think that sex only exists on Sunday evenings through a hole in a sheet, when absolutely necessary, and between a married man and woman in their late 30s who don't actually know each other anymore. These are the people who's lawns are identical and for whom "different" is a virtue of the satanic and godless heathen who deserves to burn in hell for eternity. Lets just boycott these obese wankers.

In the mean time, good luck with your campaign. My tip: order from the UK site. You'll have to wait a while longer for your books, but with the british pound worth less than a teaspoon full of gooseshit and falling you'll probably get a good deal :P

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