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Comment Re:UL Is a scam (Score 4, Insightful) 119

Any cost conscious product manufacturer uses another NRTL for the small USA market.

Um... no. The US represents the single largest single market in the world, and is roughly 25% of the entire world. No manufacturer can afford to ignore a quarter of the market, any more than they can ignore the E.U. or China.

There are plenty of PSUs which have good safety, and are not UL listed (but UL certified by another NRTL).

That makes NO sense: UL Certification means Underwriters Laboratory did the testing. Another NRTL cannot by definition, UL certify anything

But assuming you meant that the product is certified by a different NRTL: You're ignoring the scope and purpose of an NRTL.

An NRTL can do testing for OSHA compliance. OSHA is only an authority for workplace safety, and nothing else. An NRTL's certification is only valid for an industrial or commercial application, and has no value for products intended for a home.

There are only 17 NRTL's, but even then, they are limited in scope. Each NRTL is only licensed to test a specific set of criteria: For example, the NSF is an NRTL, but it's wholly inappropriate for the group to certify an electrical product. There only a couple of NRTL's licensed to test electrical products.

It's also important to note the origin and continued primary business of UL: UL was formed by and works primarily for the American fire/homeowner's insurance industry. They are the laboratory that the insurance industry goes to in order to underwrite the safety of a product.

UL listing of consumer products isn't, and should never be mistaken for any sort of governmental certification. It's an insurance industry approval, and means you're likely to get a payout should the product cause damage.

Comment Re:Sinkholing, WTF? (Score 4, Insightful) 53

It's not the government's job to repair the damage. They stop the criminals, and impound their stuff — including domains, and clear the roads so the rest of us can use them again.

They don't undo or make reparations for the damage the criminals did during thier spree.

So yeah, the backdoor changed hands, to a set the government feels is more responsible. Depending on the behavior of the botnet, it may be a bad idea to zero out the domain's DNS. We're into design a botnet, I'd certainly make it do something horrible if the command and control became unreachable. It may be better to just set up a long term honeypot to keep the swarm mollified.

Whether we like the decision or not is irrelevant unless you can convince enough of the population to make an issue of it. My money's on an an overwhelming attitude of "The police stopped hackers? Keep up the good work!"

So point your ire in the right direction: A population that doesn't care about computers, doesn't care about security, and wants stuff cheap. Blame manufacturers who pump out lousy insecure products and only give lip service to security in order to sell more insecure garbage.

It's a bad situation because neither consumers or producers have a reason to change thier behavior.

It's politically easy in a lot of nations to penalize manufacturers by creating regulations. Unless those against regulations come up with a better idea, regulation is likely what we'll get, because it's the most effective solution offered.

Comment Re:"Open source" voting machines are stupid (Score 3, Interesting) 299

Electronic voting as a whole is a gigantic boondoggle. There are only three reasons for it to exist: People who are too impatient to wait for manual counting, people who are looking to make a tidy profit selling a broken solution to a problem that doesn't need solving, and people who are interested in a way to fuck with the polls without getting caught.

You forgot: It exists to make a lot of money for those who sell machines.

The standard of integrity and validation is higher for slot machines. When the average Vegas casino is more transparent than election machines, there's a pretty serious problem.

Comment Green party files for recount (Score 2) 299

And an entirely different campaign will be accused of being a bad loser...

Still, if it's paid for, then it'll be worthwhile: It'll either increase confidence in the results (and maybe get some to accept their candidate lost), or it'll identify weakness that can be fixed.

I don't really expect it to change the results of the election - I'd bet faithless electors in the Electoral College is more likely to change the result than this.

Comment Re:Too Little and Far Too Late To Save Timmy (Score 1) 134

Jony Ive is too heavily into style over substance, IMHO, and he's the closest Apple has to a "product person."

I don't think anybody can honestly argue that consumers can be expected to maintain their system properly. Virtually every consumer is unable to make the correct decision anyway. If clicking on a link can open malware or compromise your customer's system, your product is shit. That goes for everybody - including Apple.

There are exceptions, but designing for the 0.1% that can actually maintain a computer is a loser's strategy.

People may complain about not being able to service their devices, while being completely two-faced about it.

Go ahead and try to find somebody who fixes TV's. Try to find somebody who fixes a $5,000 home theatre amplifier. Try to find somebody who fixes a refrigerator. And even if you do find one, compare the repair cost against a replacement.

Mass production inevitably marches to the point where it's more expensive to repair than to replace, and automated production is accelerating the trend.

Once you accept that, features for human maintenance and replacement (ie. user-replaceable RAM and Hard Disks) start to make no sense.

Comment Re:Where Do I Download The ISO? (Score 1) 134

Apple doesn't care if somebody makes a Darwin ISO. There's nothing they can do to prevent it anyway.

The bottom line is nobody wants to go to the significant amount of time and energy required to produce a Darwin ISO.

A huge part of the problem is supporting non-Apple hardware (drivers), and you need a significant amount of skill to do it, even if you are re-using code from FreeBSD. They can't use any of the drivers from Linux for the same reason FreeBSD can't use Linux drivers.

Back when there was a community Darwin ISO, producing drivers to make a generic distribution, Apple took note:

* Demonstrated talent? Check
* Knowledge of the XNU kernel? Check
* Able to work as a team? Check
* Passion for our OS? Double-Check

That's a recipe for an easy hire -- and they were hired.

Those who actually contributed work to produce a Darwin ISO became Apple employees, supporting Apple hardware.

After spending x hours per day coding for OS X, they likely want to do something else -- like spend time with their families and friends.

And OpenDarwin thus withered.

Was it hostility on Apple's part? It's kind of hard to say it was, because they hired most of the contributors instead of threatening or suing them.

Comment Re:huh (Score 2) 134

Why bother?

I'm serious. Why. Bother.

Quartz is a great piece of software, but even if Apple open sourced it, it would probably never make its way into any Linux distribution. The reason: "Not Invented Here" happens whenever humans are involved.

Throwing out yet another composited framebuffer to the community isn't going to magically drive adoption. It'd take a ton of effort to adopt Quartz, and the developers of X.org, Wayland, and Mir are more likely to say "Meh, we already do that" or "Why would we want that? Ours is (or will be) better with the same effort." - You know, "Not Invented Here"

The fact of the matter is Apple has open sourced a number of things that weren't well received -- and the community instead made poorly re-implemented versions. ("Not Invented Here" yet again.)

Case in point: launchd.

launchd is Apple's replacement for init, and many other daemons. Sound familiar? Both upstart and systemd were started to re-implement launchd's functionality as GPLv3 licensed code. (And this was after Apple re-licensed launchd from the Apple Public License to the Apache 2.0 License, to get more adopted by Linux & *BSD).

Comment Re:huh (Score 2) 134

They could have can kept CUPS development in-house because CUPS was originally dual-licensed (much like Qt).

When you have the source code under a proprietary license, you aren't obligated to release the code. That's why many commercial projects are dual-licensed.

Apple could have easily killed the GPL'd distribution, and used the proprietary license for CUPS that they bought, and only maintained their own version going forward. Apple even hired the developer of CUPS - so they had everything they needed to close it.

CUPS wasn't exactly a vibrant project with many contributors. There would technically be the ability for a "community" fork of CUPS from the last GPL'd release, but it would likely have died and alternative would have taken its place.

The important point, however, is that Apple didn't close CUPS development, even though they had the opportunity and ability. Instead, Apple hired the developer, and had him continue to develop and release the GPL'd version.

Comment Re:huh (Score 1) 134

He was referring to the license of LLVM/Clang -- Apple could have made their own closed-source version of LLVM/Clang, as it is BSD-Licensed. Instead, Apple not only kept it open, but they hired the team to keep developing it as open source.

Apple isn't anti-open source; they contribute a lot of code to many projects.

Comment Re:OS X... great, if you like BORKEN SHIT (Score 1) 134

One that's been around for many revisions of the OS is the abjectly borken UDP implementation; Apple's version of a supposedly broadcast protocol... that can only have one listener...

Apple doesn't have their own network stack. Their network stack is the BSD stack , and has been for every version of OS X.

Apple still absorbs code from FreeBSD, and contributes code back to FreeBSD.

One new in 10.12 is they borked Qt's tooltips and menus

So a broken 3rd party open source library is Apple's problem?

There was an extended public beta of 10.12, and the Qt developers had many months to fix the issue.

I'm not a fan of when things are broken, but the aim or your ire seems to be misplaced.

Comment Re:Any idea how it works? (Score 1) 477

There's still something to be learned in resolving the source of error, even if it's a widespread reminder to account for it in future experiments.

I feel similar about "cold fusion" claims - it's not that I believe that anything new is happening, but that there seems to be a total lack of interest in educating the world what the measurement error is.

And thus we are doomed to decades of charlatans and modern alchemy because nobody bothered to close the book on it.

Ignoring the problem allows it to grow like mold, slowly rotting public confidence in the scientific process.

Comment Re:all bout nothin (Score 1) 182

The tools he used in his experiments were recovered, and they were contaminated with Thorium, Americium, and Radium.

Additionally, over fifty foil-wrapped cubes with Thorium powder were recovered.

They were disposed of at a radioactive waste dump in the Utah Desert.

The toolbox and powder was the big concern - he may have been overstating what he did, but it wasn't a total lie, and the Feds knew it.

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