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Comment VPN comparison on That One Privacy Site (Score 4, Informative) 69

That One Privacy Guy maintains a detailed VPN comparison chart. The chart lists the results for a number of criteria for each VPN provider. Information is gathered from public sources and by contacting the respective hotlines. There is also an article about choosing a VPN, and a review section.

The site is a bit slow to load, but if offers some good information. I like the fact that no recommendation is given, everyone can come to their own conclusions based on their requirements and the available data. From the FAQ:.

Q: Can you give me a recommendation?

A: Sorry, but to be unbiased, I created my project for others to make this determination for themselves. Everyone’s needs and threat models are different as well, so if I made a suggestion that conflicted with your needs, it could very well have the opposite effect as intended.

Comment Re:Not as stupid as it sounds (Score 1) 126

You are making a big assumption here.

You're probably right. It is true for example that older PLCs didn't even offer a possibility to require authentication before anyone could connect and modify the code. My post was mainly a reaction to the many comments that implied that industrial automation has the security mindset of the average household IoT device.

At the international corporation I work for all production lines (for our own use) are planned, designed, assembled and programmed in-house; engineering designs the machine, construction assembles them, we develop the HMI, the business logic, and we program the PLCs. IT is extremely paranoid, as they should be. There is no outside vendor that can simply slap a WiFi node onto some robot.

Comment Re:Not as stupid as it sounds (Score 1) 126

Can someone please mod parent up? Hundreds of comments in this thread and this is the first insightful one. Preventative maintenance and relevant data collection is being done without connecting every single "robot" "to the internet".

I work in industrial automation, and the factories I know of and work with have a separate net for the production lines ("robots"), no access from the "human use network", no access from or to the internet. Collected data is sent to a local server or cluster via secure messaging, and that single point then may or may not have a way to send relevant data further up the chain to a remote server or cluster, via VPN. Although the internet might be used for the VPN connection, not one single point is ever exposed directly.

In addition to all of this, should an attacker ever make it into the local, machine-only network, reprogramming the robots would require the attacker to connect to the relevant PLCs - using the PLC manufacturer's proprietary tools - and actually know what they are doing. Unless they just want to thrash the system but make some subtle but destructive modifications, good luck making sense of the thousands of sensors and actuators with cryptic names that make up such a system. Maybe this wouldn't require state-level actors as parent wrote, but still a level of sophistication that is way beyond the common "infect computer, add to botnet"-attacker.

Comment Re:That kind of pricing makes no sense. (Score 1) 374

Actually, I work in industrial automation. I'm a software architect and developer by training, and I run my own small company doing work for the manufacturing sector. This requires me to dive into various disciplines that are outside of my core competencies, like electronics, mechanics, hydraulics, and specific manufacturing processes, and this is one aspect of my job that I really love.

I know you were kidding with your "only person with a job"-remark, but having spent the past 16 years on production floors in industrial manufacturing plants I can say that it is true that a certain number of jobs have been replaced by automation. During this time, a certainly relevant number of jobs has also been replaced by outsourcing to other countries.

On the other hand, new jobs have been created - someone has to design, construct, develop and maintain all this new machinery; interdisciplinary engineers, architects, automation developers won't have a problem finding a job; QA has grown in importance and headcount; and maintenance staff in factories has to have a fairly high level of preparation and expertise.

Therefore I believe it is more important than ever that kids today get a solid and extensive education. What can be automated will be automated, and many other jobs will be outsourced to the "cheaper region du jour". But there are jobs that cannot be replaced any time soon.

Comment Re:Professional attention whore strikes again (Score 1) 920

He may well be a troll. Entirely possible. But the videos I've thus far seen were not of a trollish cast, and the "Death to All Jews" one in particular is not remotely anti-semitic.

He may very well not be anti-semitic (I can't be arsed to RTFA, and I don't care about him one way or the other), but if he simply wanted to raise attention to the fact that "support" can be bought online why didn't he have the guys wave a sign that says "I Stomp Kittens"? Would most likely have offended a different target but not cost him his contracts.

Why would he be surprised and "dumbfounded" that one can hire people to wave signs with an "over-the-top message" for money? Purely as an example, minimum wage in Uganda is $1.7 per month. Seen in that context, getting the equivalent for 3 months' worth of wages for a few minutes of waving a stupid sign sure looks like a nice windfall. Even in more affluent areas people will do crazy shit for $5.

Comment Re:Colored numbers (Score 1) 134

Exactly; it feels so natural that it never occurred to me that not everybody might experience numbers the same way. I have since talked about it to some family members, DW, and friends, and while nobody else seems to associate numbers and colors, my father "sees" digits distributed in space (higher/lower). He also had never talked about that to anyone before, because to him it seemed the way numbers are supposed to be seen.

Comment Re:I'd love it except I have a kid (Score 1) 91

Also, the best camera is always the one you have with you when you need it. You will likely have your phone close by when you want to take a picture of your daughter.

I get what people mean when they suggest to use a "real camera" instead of a smartphone (hobby photographer here), but current smartphone cameras do a fine job for most day-to-day situations. Nothing keeps you from breaking out your DSLR or other camera for "that special shot", but you won't be lugging one around all day, and it won't be in your pant pocket when you need it, especially when out of the house.

Comment Re:You get what you pay for... (Score 1) 123

Because doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers and other trusted professionals are less prone than software developers to do shady or outright illegal things when exercising their profession? I don't have any specific data about that, but members of any of the above categories pop up in the relevant sections on the news now and then. If you are a crook you're crook, and no regulating body neither an insurance will change that.

But of course nobody wants to pay for that, so they get what they pay for.

As far as TFS goes, none of of his customers have paid him to siphon their customer's data. If he wasn't happy with what his customers were willing to pay he could simply have not accepted the jobs.

OTOH there are many examples of software projects - some of them are mentioned on this site now and then - that were badly handled although absurdly high amounts of money have been paid.

Comment DAB and DAB+ (Score 2) 303

Due to government requirements, our local public radio and television agency is soon switching to DAB+. This means that all devices that understand only DAB (without the +, very common until only a few years ago) will no longer be able to receive any channels and therefore be obsolete. Fortunately, FM will still be available, so my receiver from the 1980s will still be working fine. Everybody who bought into DAB too soon will have to buy a new device, though.

Comment Re:Sometimes, web pages should NOT be reloaded (Score 1) 766

Depending on the browser you are using you can simply open the console and look at the page's source code there. Additionally, it will allow you to see network requests initiated by your browser and the server's response even for elements that are loaded and rendered after the initial loading of the page has completed (e.g. when you fetch data/content dynamically from the server), something a simple "View Page Source" will not show. This method of viewing a page's source has never yielded an "expired" message for me.

On a Mac:
Chrome: menu bar: View -> Developer -> JavaScript Console (alt-cmd j)
Safari: menu bar: Develop -> Show Web Inspector (alt-cmd-i -- you may need to enable "Show Develop menu in menu bar" under Preferences -> Advanced)
Firefox: menu bar: Tools -> Web Developer -> Web Console

Comment Re:Unacceptable for professional use (Score 2) 22

Unless you give the provider a whitelist of allowed addresses (or domains), they might have a hard time filtering all calendar spam. Are your company's Outlook servers run by your IT department or are you using an external provider? Outlook calendars don't seem* to be much different from iCloud calendars: anyone can send you an invitation unless the message containing the invitation gets caught by the mail spam filters.

* I don't have much experience with Outlook - one of my customers runs Outlook servers, and they accept calendar invitations from any sender.

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