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Comment Re:Guns, freedom and all the rest (Score 1) 1144

It's not a law, it's an acknowledgement of an inalienable right, and it only spells that you to prevent the government from restricting it, so that should the government become non-representative, as it was in 1776, we have the ability to overthrow it again.

It's only that way as long as the government chooses to keep it. It's an amendement to the constitution and these can be repealed with another amendment. Prohibition is the obvious example, enshrined in the constitution by amendment XVIII and repealed in amendment XXI. It was of its time and in hindsight not a great idea. To pretty much everyone else in the western world, and an increasing number of people in the US, the same can be said of the 2nd amendment.

Comment Re:Could have been a contender (Score 1) 211

Regrettably, by 2005 when working at IBM, I encountered no evidence it had ever existed. Windows and Linux boxes only, and the topic never brought up.

I left IBM in 2007 and my department still had a couple of moderately significant products running and supported on OS/2. I don't suppose the OS/2 versions got a lot of marketing attention, or anyone buying new licenses, but it hadn't disappeared altogether. Given the nature of the product, and the customers using it, I suspect it still hasn't.

Comment Re:Priced out of Dumb Phones (Score 1) 242

Late last year, my dumb phone's USB (charging) port crapped out. I took it to the Sprint store and was told, it would cost $75 to replace the phone and that, in replacing my phone, I would have to buy into one of the new plans.

I assume that's because by going to the network for a new handset you were basically getting an "upgrade" - new phone on new contract. Why not just buy a suitable dumb phone on eBay for pretty much the price of postage and use that on your existing contract? Do American carriers do something odd like lock you down to using a specific device by IMEI number or something?

Comment Re: Software to detect bad cables? (Score 1) 113

I think that's the point, read the spec and make a cable to the spec, i.e. a good cable. Or do you mean just read the bit of the spec that does the authentication and then still use bad wire? Probably not worth the effort of only doing half a decent job rather than going the full way, hopefully anyway.

Comment Re:Not knockoffs (Score 4, Informative) 178

UK is the only place I know of where appliances are sold without power cords.

Really? I live in the UK and regularly buy appliances of various kinds and they have always come with a power cord, so this is news to me. I can just about remember a time when it was standard for devices to come without a plug and you were expected to wire your own on (presumably a hang over from the change in plug types and the fact that older ones were still in common usage for a while), but it's been a requirement for them to come with plugs for probably 20+ years.

Submission + - Barcelona Wants Children to Take the Bus to School - not "Lazy Moms on SUVs"

dkatana writes: In 1969, 48 percent of American elementary students walked or bicycled to school. By 2009, only 13 percent did.

Barcelona’s transport authority has a solution: A new program (KanGo!), piloted during the first six months of this year, that offers children the chance to go to school by regular bus while keeping parents informed each step of the journey. The program uses NFC cards and helpers armed with smartphones to monitor children as they go to school by public transport.

The city also offers free use of the public transportation system to children 13 and younger. Parents need only apply for a T-12 card, paying a one-time fee of €35 ($40).

Submission + - Amazon ban Flash ads from September (

An anonymous reader writes: In the light of Adobe Flash ads continuing to prove a popular and successful attack vector for fraudsters and hackers [], Amazon has decided to ban Flash ads on its network. The announcement suggests that the move is inspired by Firefox's recent default blocking of Flash [], and Google's decision to automatically convert Flash ads to HTML5 on its own ad network [].

Submission + - Evaluating The Security Of Open Source Software

An anonymous reader writes: The Core Infrastructure Initiative (CII), a project managed by The Linux Foundation, is developing a new free Badge Program, seeking input from the open source community on the criteria to be used to determine security, quality and stability of open source software. The first draft of the criteria is available on GitHub and is spearheaded by David A. Wheeler, an open source and security research expert who works for the Institute for Defense Analyses (IDA) and is also coordinating the CII's Census Project, and Dan Kohn, a senior adviser on the CII.

Submission + - MDM vulnerability in Apple iOS sandbox facilitates 'rogue apps' (

An anonymous reader writes: A vulnerability in Apple's iOS sandbox, which could affect personal information as well as configuration settings, has been discovered by Appthority's Enterprise Mobility Threat Team. It affects all mobile device management (MDM) clients, and any mobile applications distributed by an MDM that use the “Managed App Configuration” setting for private data. An attacker could potentially create a rogue app, perhaps masquerading as a productivity tool to increase the chances of it getting installed, and then distribute the attack by means of the iTunes store or “spear fishing” email attacks.

Comment Not a place most English people want to live (Score 0) 410

I can assure you, as someone who lives elsewhere in the UK, only people in London want to live in London. There is no desire amongst the rest of the UK population to move there. Unless you have to go there for work it's somewhere you might visit once every few years at most, with a very specific purpose in mind, and you don't enjoy it when you do.

Comment Re:extremely common fraud protection (Score 1) 130

The difference here seems to be that in your example you are primarily interested in where the the transaction is taking place (or in the case of e-commerce, where it is initiated from). All fairly reasonable, but obviously does still create a "tracking" record, but only of where you use your cards. This is suggesting, and admittedly it's quite vague (but that should never be taken as a good thing), they are just as interested in knowing where you are, by unspecified means using your electronic devices.

Now from what's said it doesn't suggest an app has to be involved in the actual transaction, and if it's not an interactive process then they must be keeping a record of where you are to compare against transactions as and when they happen. Maybe the their app pings them your location regularly, regardless of making any transactions, or maybe they pay the phone companies to give location info for your phone.

They also don't limit themselves to location, they may also use unspecified "other data" from/about your devices.

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