790 posts • joined Monday 8th October 2007 01:55 GMT
Re: Nice job...
"... I was thinking the 'de-confliction' teams was to make it easier to spy on NSA players. You never know if one of them is a double agent..."
That way lies madness! ;0)
Re: I think Bitcoin will die a death very soon
"...every penny that's spent on Bitcoin is money that isn't going into gold and silver."
Gold and silver are -in my opinion- a shitty way of guaranteeing currency. They have no practical uses except for jewellery and (in small amounts) for making some electronic components. They are subject to lots of variation depending on production, new extraction technologies and market stampedes, and History has shown that a country can produce huge amounts of precious metals and gems and still have very little actual wealth. As an example, consider the inflation in the XVII century in Spain due to the American mines, or the state of the economy in South Africa for most of the XX century.
Bitcoin is even shittier, as it depends on processing power (whose future evolution is quite controversial), breakthroughs in technology (e.g. quantum computers and new/improved algorithms) and the whim of the developers. I'd rather invest in tulips, thank you!. ;^)
A saner approach -IMHO- would be to back bank bills with a 'basket' of natural resources and energy. This way, a 50€ note could be exchanged for any of the following: 0.23 grams of gold, or 730 Kg of iron, or 1,211 Kg. of lead, 70 l of petrol, 310 kilowatt /hour or... .*
Advantages: Recessions would be weaker and happen less often, as most of the speculative side of currency would vanish, there would be good reasons for helping poor countries to develop their economies and governments wouldn't be able to bullshit-and-screw everyone else by printing more money whenever they feel like it.
This idea is far from new, and it seems quite sound. What's your opinion, fellow commentards?
* For this example, I took the numbers straight from my backside. The actual mean of deciding the weight of the different resources would be a little bit more complex. :0)
Re: Guns won't work, so let's look at alternatives...
A compressed air cannon, like those used for preventively causing avalanches in the Alps, shooting a big cartridge including a weighed net, similar to the ones proposed in former comments, in a parabolic trajectory , plus ranging and pointing hardware, plus software for calculating the shot. If you wait a few years, you'll see many similar devices in the market, as there is a definite need for them.
Guys, you just lost the opportunity to publish an article written by the true Thomas Watson! *. You should have accepted the article and oriented this young fella to be your in house IBM expert. A big opportunity missed.
*: One of them, at least.
Re: For this to work... (@ Dave 126)
I don't think that's the point. If you ever, for whatever reason, become a 'person of interest' everything you say will be stored, analyzed, and potentially used against you, one way or another, with very little judiciary oversight and no regards whatsoever for your rights. And with this gizmo, the spooks can do it on the cheap, a single implementation for all devices (being a browser app) and a single point of entry (Google's servers, which, as any fule knows, can be accessed and totally controlled by the NSA at the drop of a hat).
Re: I don't want control ( Peter )
"Too often I've walked into IT depts where they do their best to torpedo every request"
Haven't you ever considered the possibility that many of those IT departments are too under-budgeted and/or under manned to perform those requests?
I've lived personally that experience when I was in a mid-sized company in the nineties. The Marketing department came up wit a cunning plan to allow employees to telecommute, in a moment in which ADSL at 256 Mbps was an expensive novelty and patchy, to boot. The
fuckers Marketing dept. put some pressure on me for a while and finally arranged a meeting with the boss. Luckily -for the company- the boss shot them down in flames in minutes.
But I've heard from colleagues and read in forums about many, many cases that didn't end so well. Purchasing IT without feedback from the IT dept or without the means/budget/personnel to install and maintain the kit is like self medicating, and as self medicating it can be deadly for the company.
And to think that one year ago I'd have downvoted your post...
True, but this ruling is more important than that. A judge stating that "Old idea + computer != patentable idea" could be a good first step for fixing many similar patent cases, and perhaps even to fix the USPTO*.
* Yes, optimism usually doesn't cost money.
Some menacing language here, methinks
"...we aggressively pursue legal authorities and a policy framework..."
This sounds like a not too obscure euphemism for "blackmailing the shit out of judges and lawmakers". A subtle way of reminding their intended audience that there's an iron fist inside their silk glove?
Don Vito Corleone would be proud of this sentence! :0)
Re: Hey EU, are you listening? (@Ishtiaq)
And on which operating system desktop would that be on?
Either on an EFI menu or in a icon on each OS available, for restarting the machine in the desired OS. It could be also on some kind of hypervisor.
What else would you expect...
... from an US attorney called Lynch?
Oh, well... (A grain of optimism)
At this stage in the game:
- The general public is not yet aware of the implications and consequences of the NSA surveillance.
- The consequences for (most of) the people aren't yet too damaging, or even perceived as damaging. A few years more of corporatocracy and unbridled state power will change this, by lowering the living standards for most of the population to XIX century levels, at which point The People will realize they have nothing to lose and begin fighting the state.
- Another consequence is that the people will stop trusting big media and resort to other communication channels, be it the Internet (as long as it doesn't get totally controlled by the goons), mouth to ear or samizdats.
You may have noticed that I've used the word 'consequences' three times. "The System" is not good at understanding the consequences of it's own actions; greed and short term interests trounce long term survivability every time. And the consequence -again that word- is that there is a revolution coming, and most of the parasites now in charge will be removed. If you don't agree with me, take a look at the French and Russian revolutions.
Yes, there's still hope, but I reckon things will get worse before improving.
Re: Before picture
Seriously, who uses a roomba on their countertops?
I remember a story I read in some forum about some a*hole trying to use a Roomba to clean his swimming pool. Filled with water. Perhaps it's the same guy.
Re: The 3 laws...
Would you prefer that, by inaction, he allowed a human to come to harm?
That depends on which particular human could have been harmed. There are humans out there whose sole existence violates the Zeroth Law. ;^)
Re: If you want more trees, use MORE paper
In my opinion, the article you quoted is FOS. Trees used for paper production have usually nothing to do with the original species that populated the area, and often are also invading species, that cause great harm to local ecosystems. Here in the sunny Spain - and AFAIK in the rest of Europe- they're using eucalyptus, a fast growing invader species that makes the ground toxic for most other plants and trees, but grow almost as fast as bamboo*.
They make 'interesting'** forest fires too, and tend to cause lots of erosion***. Add to that the usual problems with monocultures and the picture gets yet a little bit darker. As for the carbon sequestration angle, paper production needs lots and lots of energy and produces lots of CO2 and other contaminants, so growing trees for making paper is far less efficient as a carbon sink than, e.g. growing trees for quality wood and some nuts . Anyway, I agree with you that the main problem is the economy. Sigh...
*Note: Yes, I'm exaggerating a little bit.
**Note: Where 'interesting' means 'really fucking difficult to put down'. I can tell you from personal experience that those fires are like an open window to hell.
***Note: I think eucalyptus is the Aussie's revenge against the rest of the world for sending them all those rabbits. ;-)
This is what happens when...
... technologies from the XIX century and the XXI century clash. Imagine what one of those wooden early telephones could do to a smartphone. Coal, iron and steam, FTW!!! :0)
Re: The problem is the analysis
"Not all of them banking apps for example require a mobile phone sim otherwise they won't work."
On a more serious note, that's caused by a physical limitation, similar to trying to run a GPS app on a device that lacks a GPS receiver, or a FM radio app on a device without radio hardware, or trying to run a full fledged photoshop like app on a device with a tiny screen. What we are discussing here is a set of artificial limitations imposed by MS on their devices.
"Sounds like a great way to get hacked."
Nah... What could possibly go wrong?
Re: Don't Forget
"Their definition of "terrorist" includes journalists"
True! . But that gets balanced, somehow, by that funny definition of 'torture' that doesn't include waterboarding. ;-)
@ AC 7th November 2013 22:34 GMT
"Do all the paranoid people on here think we simply shouldn't have intelligence services?"
You don't need to be paranoid to see where this could take us. A government agency with the power to spy on everyone and blackmail everyone? Without effective checks and balances? Working in a deliberately diffuse legal framework that allows said agency to, basically, ignore previous Laws?
In my opinion, it's either we fight -and defeat- this kind of shit or we'll be building concentration camps inside the next two decades.*
*: Yes, a Goldwin. So what?
Re: phages well-known (@ MondoMan)
" bacteriophages (viruses that attack bacteria) have been well-studied over the past century, "
But their therapeutic value hasn't been studied, except by the Russian group and now the British one. Needless to say, the investigation described in your post will be extremely useful to create and/or select the best virus strains for fighting a given bacterial infection.
With any luck, in a few decades hospitals will be using 'phage printers' creating 'personalized' phage varieties designed using a DNA 'design library'. This way, there'll be no need to keep in cold storage many thousands of phage strains. This could become the biggest medical achievement of this century.
I did read the subheading as...
..."to hit Windows Update prostrate"
This has created several images and associations in my mind that I'd like to forget as soon as possible.
I just visited the .onion link...
... and there's one of those big FBI notices. And a request for username and password. Fishy, fishy...
EDIT: LOL. I just read the page. :-). Anyway, I concur with the above comments that this is probably a ruse by the FBI itself.
Re: El Reg headline writers...
Yep! Best ElReg headline EVER!!!
Re: "I have always put the interests of Serco first"
Maybe throw in the words "short-term"...
Totally agreed. It's about time that lawmakers start addressing this short-term vs. long-term discrepancy in big companies. A good first step would be to pay executive's bonuses using company stock and allowing the exec. to negotiate/sell said stock only after a given amount of time has passed, e.g. three years after the exec left the company. That would give said execs a strong motivation for caring about the company's future, instead of the current status quo, i.e. execs not giving a shit about the company as long as they can retire with a fat bonus+golden parachute.
Private contractor companies robbing the government blind??? I'm totally shocked!!! What's the world coming to?
If it allows us to install our own private lavabit-type mail servers, the NSA will have a hard time hacking them all. :0)
Thumbs up for Mr. Levinson and the rest of the Dark Mail Alliance.
Re: analogy fail? (@ Frumious Bandersnatch)
" This leads to the question of how a distributed identity system like this one is going to convince users that it's in their own interest to be "provers" in this system"
By allowing them to use the other "provers" in the system to check their own certificates. In short: you are not a "prover", you can't use/check the certificates.
"At about 1/2 light speed, according to something I read yesterday, interstellar dust particles will have a relative effective mass equivalent to a medium-sized artillery shell "
You may want to check your sources. If my memory doesn't fail me, you need to go faster than 0.9 c to just double the apparent mass.
Re: planned obsolescence
" If you can't repair it, you have to do without or replace it - which increases sales and profits."
... till the punters get the hint and stop buying kit from the company. There has to be a balance between making profits and pissing off customers, and when a company ignores this, it will end up regretting its error. In my opinion, selling expensive and unrepairable/unupgradable devices falls south of that balance point. Far south.
"...find ways of trying to learn if in fact there is a threat that we need to respond to."
Mr. Kerry, with the means you and your chums use, if there isn't a threat now there will be one soon. PRISM is both an attack on and and insult to democracy.
Batteries: (was Re: There's always going to be some limit to repairability)
Don't know about iPads, but I've seen two Macbook Air units with their batteries bulging after one or two years. In both units the bulging caused problems also in the touch pads and, needless to say, the battery life was shit by then. One of the machines was under its guarantee period, so Apple fixed it quickly and free; the other one, not so much. When I was researching the issue I read about many similar cases, intermixed with complaints about diminishing battery life.
My point is that with the -quite habitual- shenanigans with random batches of batteries failing, making it difficult to swap a broken battery doesn't seem to be too user friendly. Ditto for other components, like memories and SSDs.
Yes, we all know they're already removing lots sick people using drones. They are also removing lots of healthy people, but, as you said, omelettes and eggs.
Out of pure curiosity...
The article lists the revenue for several of Nokia's divisions. Shouldn't it include also costs/expenses data? Knowing one without knowing the other seems a little bit pointless, IMHO.
HA! And they said that I was mad...
... for always carrying my laptop strapped to my chest! This will show them!!!
Re: An form of words worthy of a politician
"What will the European Union mutate into after a few more decades, or less time than that?"
If the USA's government and intelligence community get their deserved punishment for their attitudes on privacy, government transparency, human rights and respecting their own laws, there's a good chance that the EU will think twice before putting itself in that kind of situation.
While this would delay the coming of the Panopticon dystopia, it's not a true solution, just a temporary palliative. The solution would be having a vigilant, well informed and well educated public.
Yeah, I'll keep on dreaming. :0(
"and all things SM are going "
That would be SadoMasosoft. It describes the company's spirit better than the actual name. :0)
Offtopic: And thank you, ElReg, for the 'edit' button!.
A foreigner mole admin probably
The Russian mole was having his yearly round of polygraph tests.
The Chinese mole was on medical leave with a bad case of flu.
The Israeli guy was getting married in Tel Aviv.
It has to be the Norks!!!
And about the network speed...
I know this may be a long shot, but you could try this:
This page explains the theory and provides a download link.
Basically, this little program stops your network card from waiting for a given number of packets before sending them together. I think this -waiting for several packets- could cause issues with the way your satellite box sends the packets.
Testing it shouldn't take you more than five minutes, and I think it has a chance to fix the issue. The program can be used to change this parameter, or to set it back to its original value.
Oh, and don't forget to look for bittorrent clients inside the network, or computers connected by WiFi from other buildings in the town. :0)
"You disagree that most people use their ISP's DNS as a default without thinking about?"
From your original comment:
"A malicious DNS server could be configured, exposing users to web browser exploits."
I just thought this was interesting considering that the vast majority of users will end up using their ISP's DNS servers as default without ever thinking about it.
I read that paragraph in your comment as if you were stating that users using their ISP's DNS servers would be safe from this. If that wasn't what you meant, please clarify.
" the vast majority of users will end up using their ISP's DNS servers as default without ever thinking about it."
Sorry to disagree, but a rooted router can easily include software to spoof-redirect external DNS servers to wherever the miscreants please.
How much do you trust your ISP?
Not a single atom, not a single bit. But I reckon that, for their own good, ISPs will try to keep good defences so criminally-minded 'independent' hackers don't pwn the ISP's systems.
The question of ISPs deep inspecting our data and selling them to marketing companies and intelligence agencies is a different matter, and is being discussed a lot these days. :-(
Just about fucking time!
The evidence that the USA is using terrorism as an excuse for waging a total information and economic war against the rest of the world, allies included, is quite overwhelming. Kudos for the European Parliament for taking measures against this, at last.
Of course, there is a very definite risk that the USA will 'allow' - or even promote- a terrorist attack on European soil, to soften the public opinion and regain control. If that happens, I hope European citizens understand that one of the costs of being free is accepting risks.
Please, Americans, clean your own house before things get really nasty.
Re: Thanks El Reg
In my opinion, Mr. Bright is in the wrong side of the argument. If only MS can repair them, it's sort of a monopoly, and they'll be able to charge whatever they want for the repairs. If they ever get some market traction, their next logical step will be to price the repairs so highly that nobody wants to repair their tablets, thus killing the costs involved and forcing customers to buy a new tablet from MS, so said customers can protect their previous investment in software. It's a win-win.
In the end, It's a matter of confidence, and MS, as far as I know, hasn't much confidence left in its coffers. My bet is that they will screw up again.
So nobody told this judge that the word 'hacker' has several different meanings?
Either that or he chose the meaning most likely to get him a
bribe pat in the head from Big Business.
This ruling is shameful.
"I'm not sure sentience (in the sense of the word that bulls are sentient) really should be a major factor in these (or most) types of decisions."
This definition of 'sentient' is central to the problem. Causing pain and suffering to an animal with a complex brain is something that should be avoided at all costs, unless it's absolutely necessary -e.g. rat pest control, boar hunting, slaughterhouses,...-. In my opinion unnecessarily torturing animals is a step or two away from torturing people.
To be frank, the main issue I've with bullfights is not the suffering of the bulls -though it's an important reason-, but the way in which this 'sport' affects our minds. By supporting bullfights and similar activities, as a society, we are not only condoning animal suffering, but also human casualties, and we're doing it just for fun (and money).
Yep, bullfights are barbaric and cruel
And I totally support Pamela's stance on the issue.
Except for the part about 'sentient beings'. If bulls were sentient beings they should also sign against the bill. :^)