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Comment Re:Cook is wrong about why banks keep information (Score 4, Insightful) 135

Banks, in order to operate with integrity, DO need to keep a transaction ledger. Honest ones had been doing so for centuries before the Bank Secrecy Act.

There is a highly important yet subtle difference here. The Bank Secrecy Act requires banks divulge information they already were keeping.

A similar act given to apple would require them to divulge information about your account (information they are already keeping). But, the newest FaceTime does peer-to-peer VoIP if it can. Is Apple required to engineer a backdoor in to listen to a conversation that *today* they only facilitate the initial call setup? Should they be required to keep an audio copy of the call? Apple currently does not store the call, and if possible they only arbitrate the two phones finding each other (they may not even transit the call audio). This would be like requiring you bank to keep tabs on how you spend your cash.

Comment Re:so.. where is this going to go (Score 1) 135

Your questions are good.

It's well known that foreign governments are watching this case very closely. It's understood that if the US wins this case, governments like China are going to start requiring backdoors as well.

While Apple winning this case doesn't prevent China, etc from doing so ... Apple loosing this case will assuredly open the floodgates to foreign governments all getting their hook in the code.

Comment Re:Rubbish (Score 5, Insightful) 100

The AP put newspapers on the path to death decades ago.

If you think about it, The Associated Press was basically an RSS feed of news items for many decades before things like the internet existed. Small papers found that they could subscribe to this feed, and then fire reporters. It kept their papers full of ink, but the AP had hollowed out their organization.

What we realized when the internet happened is: our local hard working news paper wasn't really all that hard working. They were essentially an RSS aggregator, with a few local style pieces tossed in.

What newspapers didn't see coming was technology being able to so easily replace their RSS aggregation functions and cut them out as the middle-man.

What we need to ask ourself is: not how do we save newspapers. How do we support quality content generators and reporters?

Comment I'm a republican ... (Score 5, Interesting) 182

.. and very pro capitalism, etc bla bla.

But ... common ... how can our Federal Highway Administration go about researching and the setting a standard for a font ... and then be so stupid as to not procure rights to that font and then license them to every other agency/company at no cost?

As a republican ... this is the kind of thing I expect my government TO do. I know wikipedia says "It was developed by independent researchers with the help of the Texas Transportation Institute and the Pennsylvania Transportation Institute, under the supervision of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA)," why didn't any of these agencies say "So ... we're going to pay you a huge pile of money ... once ... for this font."

Comment Where was I ... (Score 0) 96

I was in kindergarten.

The school grouped several classes together into one room to watch the shuttle go up. Mind you this was the mission they were putting a teacher up as part of the crew, so ... much hype in the schools about it.

Anyway, room full of kids say K-3rd grade all watching the launch live on TV. Then ... boom ... and teachers quietly shuffle the kids out of the room and back to their desks.

Comment Re:Highest Profit (Score 5, Informative) 712

This is exceptionally dishonest.
Do those states have more leniency if you can prove motivated self defense? Yes. Are they shooting galleries? No.

The castle doctrine and family of laws is a (perhaps over reaction) to discretionary prosecution. Many states still have the legal doctrine that you must attempt to flee before you are allowed to respond with deadly force. There are examples of prosecutors who take self-define cases to court after the defendant has retreated all the way to a room like a bathroom, then while their assailant was attempting to come through the door finally returned deadly force. The prosecutors would then take these people to court making the case there was a window they could have attempted to squeeze out of.

Unfortunately the only easy way to say "hey ... really? That was them attempting to flee first." Is to make the laws around the definition of when lethal force can be returned very liberal and remove the discretion from the prosecutors.

Comment Re:the law of conservation of energy (Score 1) 494

The emissions problems described are not about CO2 emissions. One of the unfortunate side effects of variable rate internal combustion engines (like the ones in every car) is frequently the burn is not complete, and at other times far too hot. Either of these conditions can cause the production of other components, more then CO2 and Water that would be the intended output of a hydrocarbon + O2 reaction. Things like NO (nitrous oxide), which can combine with atmospheric water and turn it slightly acidic and soot.

Reducing production rates of NO and soot is all about ensuring the engine is fueled properly, and sometimes installing filters in the exhaust system. However, nearly all of these things actually result in a loss of performance AND a loss in fuel efficiency. Filters cause back pressure on the engine, reducing the pumping efficiency and frequently to ensure proper burns you have to fuel the engine *more* to achieve proper temperatures for complete combustion, while also limiting the amount of fuel allowed to be injected when you step on it as this can cause the engine to exceed the optimal temperature zone and produce more things like NO output.

So, yes ... to get cleaner air ... the engines actually loose both performance and efficiency. None of these are desired by the customers.

Comment Who cares about Clinton's domestic communications? (Score 2) 676

I don't really care what classified documents Hillary was emailing with other members of our own government. Yes, I realize that there is a massive risk that foreign governments could have intercepted them. I acknowledge that is a huge risk.

Hillary has repeated several times that all of her emails with the state department, etc are properly documented and could be subject to FOIA requests. This is technically correct, we could get copies of any emails sent to/from Hillary Clinton and other members of our government.

What really concerns me, that I see nobody talking about is: we have no clue and no record that we can trust that documents Hillary Clinton's communications with governments not our own. What were the communications with the head of the State Department was having with Russia, China, Iran, etc? I understand that a great many of these communications may be "classified" or otherwise sensitive and not something for general public consumption today. But we will *never* be able to FOIA such documents 25, 50 or 100 years from now. Our inability to re-construct the details of historical events in the future has been greatly damaged.

The simple fact that even our own president can't say "get me every damn email that Clinton has sent to Russia" should be worrying to everybody.

Comment Re:Pretend this was a US government outage (Score 1) 182

Because if I choose not to use google, AWS or even NASDAQ to perform the services offered the police don't show up at my house and compel it.

You may say Google and NASDAQ offer services that are difficult to impossible to find elsewhere. Yet there are alternative search engines, and there are ways to trade stock that do not involve NASDAQ. If these companies continue to mess up, their competitors will get more traction. If my government messes up, they still compel me to use their service. The difference while minor at incident #1 can be quite a difference by incident #n.

Comment Re:Testla is good... (Score 3, Interesting) 452

Actually, you're only half right. Tesla wanted to pump electricity into the ground, not the air.

Tesla thought electricity was a transverse wave (think: sound wave) not a sinusoidal wave (think: light). It's why his project didn't work.

Not to be too unfair, at the time it was hotly debated which kind of wave it was and nobody really knew for sure.

Comment Do you want to follow or lead? (Score 1) 656

I think it matters a bit on what you want to do. An awful lot of the "heavy lifting" math intensive stuff has been implemented in the form of shared libraries. Do you want to encrypt data? Knowing more of best practices around session and key management (which isn't a math laden topic) and that you need good entropy for key generation (something you can find implemented in a shared library). So, go find some shared libs with AES and prng (source of random data) and you're likely good.

Do you want to be the guy who makes what replaces AES? Learn to love math.

Really it comes down to: do you want to follow best practices or make them? The more you want to be on the end of making best practices vs gluing together bits and pieces the more really knowing math helps.

Comment The opportunity here (Score 1) 1163

Here's the political opportunity here: making the case for how we're all better off together.

Red states feel they can live on their own.
Blue states like to point out they tend to receive more fed dollars then they send.

Neither of those arguments are why we're better off together, and convinces the other side to try to work together.

Sign the petition. Make DC make the argument.

But ... they won't ... *sigh*

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