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* Posts by Destroy All Monsters

9433 posts • joined 3 Jun 2008

Time travellers outsmart the NSA

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Holmes

Re: A must read to increase your knollij!

I think you need to point us to your paper on the arxiv!

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Headmaster

The wet dream of the liberal: "If I had the money ... I would eradicate badness!"

Just think how much good we could do in the world with such amounts of money. We could give everyone a decent education and eradicate terrorism.

This is exactly what they are doing.

They are just failing hard on both points.

You think you gonna do any better?

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Re: He came, he saw, he left again.

"He went back to our common future of FAIL, whence he came."

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Headmaster

A must read to increase your knollij!

PHYS771 Lecture 19: Time Travel

Let's talk about the more interesting kind of time travel: the backwards kind. Can closed timelike curves (CTCs) exist in Nature? This question has a very long history of being studied by physicists on weekends. It was discovered early on, by Gödel and others, that classical general relativity admits CTC solutions. All of the known solutions, however, have some element that can be objected to as being "unphysical." For example, some solutions involve wormholes, but that requires "exotic matter" having negative mass to keep the wormhole open. They all, so far, involve either non-standard cosmologies or else types of matter or energy that have yet to be experimentally observed. But that's just classical general relativity. Once you put quantum mechanics in the picture, it becomes an even harder question. General relativity is not just a theory of some fields in spacetime, but of spacetime itself, and so once you quantize it, you'd expect there to be fluctuations in the causal structure of spacetime. The question is, why shouldn't that produce CTCs?

Incidentally, there's an interesting metaquestion here: why have physicists found it so hard to create a quantum theory of gravity? The technical answer usually given is that, unlike (say) Maxwell's equations, general relativity is not renormalizable. But I think there's also a simpler answer, one that's much more understandable to a doofus layperson like me. The real heart of the matter is that general relativity is a theory of spacetime itself, and so a quantum theory of gravity is going to have to be talking about superpositions over spacetime and fluctuations of spacetime. One of the things you'd expect such a theory to answer is whether closed timelike curves can exist. So quantum gravity seems "CTC-hard", in the sense that it's at least as hard as determining if CTCs are possible! And even I can see that this can't possibly be a trivial question to settle. Even if CTCs are impossible, presumably they're not going to be proven impossible without some far-reaching new insight. Of course, this is just one instantiation of a general problem: that no one really has a clear idea of what it means to treat spacetime itself quantum-mechanically.

In the field I come from, it's never our place to ask if some physical object exists or not, it's to assume it exists and see what computations we can do with it. Thus, from now on, we'll assume CTCs exist. What would the consequences be for computational complexity? Perhaps surprisingly, I'll be able to give a clear and specific answer to that.

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Paris Hilton

John Titor told me all about it in 2000!

You may be confusing this with a novel by Dan Brown?

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Apple: C'mon, flick on iBeacon. Let us track you. You'll get BADGES

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Holmes

Everything tastes better with iBacon!

"This promotional scavenger hunt demonstrates our commitment to leveraging the latest in emerging technologies, making CES the most interactive and engaging ..."

Oh snap! I ran out of bingo cards!

Am I now disqualified?

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'BILLION-YEAR DISK' to help FUTURE LIFEFORMS study us

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Paris Hilton

Not bad, but didn't Simon Sharwood talk about that in this ElReg-ism?

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Italian woman stunned by exploding artichoke

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Re: Surprise

They are not into "signature strikes". Cyberfa**otcommand is responsible for that.

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Hacker backdoors Linksys, Netgear, Cisco and other routers

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Mushroom

Yeah, well

My router here, (the name of which sounds either like a Nasty German from a bad WWII movie or an electric interference) has two ports open to the Internet that are not particularly well documented (i.e. not at all), apparently for "maintenance purposes" by the ISP. Am I happy about this? Hell no. Did I close them? I tried. Turns out it is impossible for one of them. Pretty sure the overpaid "maintenance engineer" from the ISP will give me an earful and threaten "fines" when he next shows up. Can I replace the crud with something acceptable? No, the Incumbent Operator (tm) has a special sauce protocol and configurationn that can only be applied by him to exactly that hardware. What do?

Does anyone take consumer security seriously?

No. Here is a two-year contract instead. F*ck you.

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Snapchat vows to shut its hole in wake of 4.6 million user data breach

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Holmes

Re: Worry more about google

But it never hurts to use more privacy-conscious websites anyway.

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Trollface

Some would say it's due to copyright being relentlessly weakened by evil big business, then call for additional protection of the "creative types" instead.

Problem solved. Or not?

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Snowden docs: NSA building encryption-cracking quantum computer

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Big Brother

Re: @Slawek

In furtherance of which:

The Supreme Court Logic That Could Destroy Privacy in America: It's dangerous for courts to continue adhering to Smith v. Maryland, a decision that was made before the advent of big data.

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Re: Yawn.

Yeah Matt, thank you for statist tax-and-spend, war-is-a-force-that-gives-us-tech message.

Sorry, I nearly fell asleep whilst the sheeple desperately tried to inject some paranoia into yet another very obvious story.

Not enough to post random drivel, apparently. Don't you have the latest HP failure to defend?

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Headmaster

Re: Not all darkness

Ken Thompson proved that you can insert exploits into software without having it appear in the source code. It would be especially easy for open source software.

No. It is time to put that stuff to rest.

Countering "Trusting Trust"

It's more likely to have a Bug Of Consequence hidden in plain sight. Plausibly denibale if some takes the time to comb through the code.

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Holmes

Re: Oh yeah?

WILL FACTORIZE LARGE NUMBERS FOR A MODERATE SUM. Quick results or money back. Discreteness guaranteed. Please call [NUMBER] to obtain one-time-pad for further communication.

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@Slawek

"NSA did not violate any US laws."

Next: "SS doctors did not violate any german laws"

Yeah, one can twist and turn, spin and obfuscate, lie and dissemble and plaster the Big Lie on every board so that anything can be justified "to the letter of the law". But so what? It's just another way of raw power abuse if done by those in charge and of whistling past the graveyard by the others.

tl;dr: Retarded

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Holmes

Re: Quantum gravy

I am nor so sure that it is "far off". The hard problem (i.e. quantum error correction) is in the box. IMHO, there is a good chance of seeing a few hundred entangled qbits happily doing their qbit stuff by the end of the decade, if not a few years earlier.

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WTF?

Oh yeah?

"You can't build a business around decrypting."

Woah these grapes must be sour!

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AT&T takes aim at T-Mobile with $450 cashback lure

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Childcatcher

T-Mobile has seen stellar growth since it stopped trying to sell itself off and decided to shake up the market instead.

Providing things that customers want instead of what the marketing-financials couple from hell comes up with actually means success: SHOCKER!!

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BlackBerry sues American Idol host's company for 'blatant' patent infringement

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Like a qwertz...

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Trollface

Sir! Lawsuits in Motion is uncloaking on our starboard bow!

Back to old form, I see.

Does the encroaching death fire up its last spirits?

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Mars One's certain-death space jolly shortlists 1,000 wannabe explorers

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Re: Sense of adventure, sense of reality

I'm guessing that we should wait to launch humans to Mars after we've built a decent space elevator.

Right. That pipe dream of fantasy again.

It's gonna happen if it's cheap. The way things are going it's never gonna be cheap.

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Re: Fuck the ratings

> utterly irresponsible

Not to fear, Obama will ban it.

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Re: Surely most of these are Trolls

> Because you will have to rely upon those people for survival.

How is the view from olduvai gorge, george?

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Alicia Keys throws in towel on BlackBerry's creative director job

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Re: Remake of one of her songs?

Finally an economically realistic song on endless loop in the bus.

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Angel

Re: Encouraging women into STEM?

"Do as I say, not as I do!"

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Trollface

And Will.I.am sounding through the rarefied martian atmosphere.

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Early corners with rounding

Them!

"BlackBerry - which used to be known as Research In Motion"

for people with memories not holed by entropy, also known as "Lawsuits in Motion" because "WE INVENTED EVERYTHING, in particular QWERTY KEYBOARDS FOR MICE!"

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iPhone fanbois outsmart fandroids in totally reliable test of brain power

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Trollface

Clearly we are in conservative-vs.-liberals territory, complete with brainscans showing the shriveled conservative hypothalamus and explanations about their fear of otherness being due to childhood trauma, while the sun-seeking open liberal mindset is due to caring parenthood and education in non-violence resulting in strong outswells of inner crying whenever non-liberals need to be forcefully controlled for their own good or sand-denizens need to be incinerated for democracy. Praise be!

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Boffins invent LUMINOUS PIGS again, glow-in-dark bacon sarnies presumably imminent

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You want pigs? Too bad, here is some PETA.

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Microsoft tries to trademark 'Mod' in the US

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Re: Microsoft tiles?

Windows Mothra still is better.

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Snapchat: In 'theory' you could hack... Oh CRAP is that 4.6 MILLION users' details?

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Trollface

25 million accounts are dogeaccounts

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'New' nova starts to BLUSH

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Holmes

Mrister Nova Nova

No, because this is "a" nova, which is then added to the listing of novae previously held, so it is, indeed, new.

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Re: Nova != Supernova

You are right. This classified as Nova (but what type?)

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Destroy All Monsters
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[Obi Wan Kenobi Quote]

Where is that on the map of our 4-armed-and-barred-dark-matter-suffused old' galaxy?

I sure hope there was no-one in the neighbourhood when that went off.

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Acer C720 Chromebook with Haswell battery boosting goodness

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Trollface

Re: It might be virus free, but.....

"Absolutely safe"!

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Holmes

Re: Mandatory comment on the resolution

I remember an article in BYTE magazine from '90 or thereabouts (time of the UUCP howtos, getty tips-and-tricks and reviews of the SPARCstation 1) calling for the well-deserved demise of CAPS LOCK. I can't remember whether it was actually written by Jerry Pournelle.

Instead we got the Windows Key (which, I note, this here Chromebook is admiringly bereft of; I say!)

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So, which people you read about in The Register got gongs in the Honours list?

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Re: It's New Year's again,

You know... that time of the year...

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How the NSA hacks PCs, phones, routers, hard disks 'at speed of light': Spy tech catalog leaks

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Pint

Re: It's like reading a CDW catalog from evil mirror-world!!

> reading a CDW catalog from evil mirror-world!

It's more like being on the movie set of The Shockwave Rider

I will drink to John Brunner.

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Trollface

Re: Waldorf and Stadler are so grumpy

Can't be, he comes into the show at page 3.

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run like Obama did

I think there is some confusion with Forrest Gump here.

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Trollface

GOLD JULY BOOJUM

At least I now have new names for my servers.

howlermonkey.homelinux.org sound pretty good.

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In a nutshell. Not i'ts not big corporations and weak copyright.

Interview with NSA Whistleblower Bill Binney: Afraid We’re Spreading Secret Government Around World

The FBI, Drug Enforcement Agency, and law enforcement, along with the NSA, are collecting information on Americans and then using that information to arrest people. “Parallel construction” is then used to “fabricate evidence” that is substituted with evidence that is subsequently collected legally and through mechanisms that have traditionally been an accepted part of criminal investigations.

In former senior NSA employee and whistleblower William Binney’s view, this is the “real problem.” It is occurring without a warrant and they can bring this information into court. He calls it the “planned program perjury policy right out of the Department of Justice.”

...

Finally, in his opinion, data on US citizens needs to stop being collected indiscriminately. How law enforcement uses this data needs to be addressed.

“They’re all talking about NSA analysts and to me that’s not the real threat. The real threat comes from those other people, who can come at you with guns and put you in a prison and take you off without due process.”

Enjoy your comfy sofa, gently lulled by the TV, chuckling to yourself.

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Coming in 2014: Scary super-soldier exoskeleton suits from the US military

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Trollface

Next project: DARPA Dark Helmet

"It's advanced armor. It's communications, antennas. It's cognitive performance."

More like cognitive dissonance, am I right?

Yeah I know. "Deficits don't matter" (conservatives) and "We owe it to ourselves (liberals) is the song we all sing while in the trash compactor. Empire demands its tools, gets its tools.

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HP: We're axing 29,000 workers? Add another 5,000 to that

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Big Brother

Re: While

Saving lives from the blight is not her job description!

In reality, "the economy" should absorb that. I thought there were a dearth of skilled IT people?

Or are we still aching from the skewed economy due to endless interest rate manipulations by the "people in charge"? Let me take a look outside...

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BlackBerry CEO John Chen: Y'know what, we'll go back to enterprise stuff

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Re: Virtual Wraithdom is the LOVE Application Implementation Device and a Truly Hot Driver

That's typical for missives from El Martian. It's like Philip K. Dick's "Pink Ray", only slightly mistuned.

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Gimp

Re: Beginning to dislike Blackberry stories

I don't see how. Nortel self-executed its management out of fear from legal problems at exactly the wrong moment, lost courage, then got lawyered mercilessly for all its worth like Gimp.

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2013: A Space Odyssey - a cosmological review of the year

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Just before the Gong

Jews in Space (but without Mel Brooks)

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Blame Silicon Valley for the NSA's data slurp... and what to do about it

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Re: @Andrew Orlowski

Begging the question of whether "copyrights" are "property rights".

"But... MUH PROPERTY, PIRATE!" "Fuck you, this is MY harddisk!"

See the difference?

"Property rights" and "Privacy" are completely orthogonal things. And so are "Copyrights". Mashing all this up into a guacamola ain't helping nobody.

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Big Brother

Way to miss the point and foobaring it

The ridicule is thoroughly justified, for trusting giant corporations - whose business models rely on selling your identity to advertisers - to safeguard your privacy is like hiring a kleptomaniac to guard the sweet shop.

The very second paragraph mixes up privacy violations by companies and privacy violations by state. While the first are a nuisance, the second get you into a concentration camp. They are not the same at all.

Then talking about how "copyright" has been "weakened" (what? I must have been dreaming the last twenty years) and can be applied to the problem at hand, while it is basically a state-granted monopoly that state can give a flying fuck about is sadly jumping the shark.

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