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* Posts by Charles 9

4709 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Let's be clear, everyone: DON'T BLOCK Wi-Fi, DUH – FCC official ruling

Charles 9
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Re: Huh?

"54% control of America's high-speed internet service, in their utopian Metered Billing, Hugely Profitable dreams, will surpass every other line of business Comcast is in.'

Except without their own content (which NBC Universal represents), they can't discriminate since now every party is a third party, and any discrimination in favor of one will result in all the others crying foul. In fact, it would be in Comcast's fiduciary interest to fast lane NBC content and throttle Netflix (as the former is cheaper to send down their pipes). Like railroads owning their own timber plots and mines.

You mentioned Cox. Funny that. They haven't introduced metered billing, yet they've doubled all their Internet plans without raising prices (which incidentally have held steady for several years). The bill only went up about a dollar this year due to tax hikes (and remember, comm bills are itemized—by law).

Then there's the matter of Google, who none of the standing companies can bully.

"We should be writing rules that allow competitors to use existing, paid-for cable runs, and eliminating monopoly restrictions to allow new competitive infrastructure."

Two problems. One, nearly all cable in the US is privately owned. Forcing a company to allow competitors to use their bought-and-paid-for equipment would never fly in Congress, as it's a violation of the basic principle of ownership and property. Basically, it would be Un-American. Second, the reason those monopolies exist in the first place is because no one's willing to wire up as space a country as the United States out of the goodness of their hearts. They (and their investors) will demand RoI. As for muni broadband, most communities lack the capital to do it. Leaving them pretty much with a choice between an exclusive contract, an exclusive contract, or no broadband meaning you can't attract people into your community. Oh, you have exceptions like that country east of Seattle, but that's pretty much a matter of luck (being up north attracted data centers--less cooling costs--the same can't be said down in Arizona), which is why you don't see the same things happening elsewhere in the country.

"If you are a consumer, and not a shill for the cable and telephone industry, why would you disagree with free enterprise?"

Because free enterprise is willing to let the little man (or in this case, the Middle of Nowhere) rot. In the private sector, some customers are "Not Worth the Money," which to them means expendable.

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Charles 9
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Re: Huh?

"No "conditions," "concessions," or "promises" will make that pig not really, really stink for America. Keep watching..."

Not even being forced to sell off NBC Universal, turning them back into a dumb data pipe?

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Charles 9
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"But in the name of security we also need an update to the protocol to ignore gratuitous deauth packets."

According to James 100, updates to the 802.11 protocols will require deauth packets to be signed against the AP in future. IOW, soon you'll only be able to deauth on your own network (as an outsider won't know the key).

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Charles 9
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Re: what about places that should have blocked signal?

If a theater wants to stop calls, all they have to do is invest in faraday-type shielding. Even if coverage isn't complete, it should be enough to drop the bars enough to make the call impractical.

Then again, moviegoers could respond by not coming. They can be pretty sensitive about their phones...

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Charles 9
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Re: Hotels next step?

Or they could just start investing in shunting the outside signals instead (IOW, turn their buildings into Faraday cages). No rules against that, and some buildings tend to do that naturally due to their structural design (namely buildings with lots of metal in their construction).

PS. The only way Congress can pressure the FCC is with an Act. That means either convincing President Obama to sign it (fat chance) or getting enough votes to override his veto (again, fat chance).

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Bluetooth-enabled miracle washing orbs? Are you kidding?

Charles 9
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Re: Funny...

But we're a picky society. Sure, water can get most stuff off, but we also want the rest off. That's why even back then, we knew to use soap to help dislodge more stubborn dirt. Put it this way. We use soap to try and avoid having to wash things twice.

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DARPA: We KNOW WHO YOU ARE... by the WAY you MOVE your MOUSE

Charles 9
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But the malware would also have to recognize the target of each click, particularly if these targets shift and move. How would a pattern recognizer differentiate between one type of stroke-and-click action and another? Are you trying for the File menu, the Edit Menu, the close box or the minimize box? Are you highlighting or resizing?

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Charles 9
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Re: How a user handles the mouse could be distinctive and difficult to mimic

But even with keyboards you can pick up patterns: unique rhythms of key pace and so on. How much time between keys do you take? How often and for how long do you hesitate between bursts? How quickly do you use the backspace to correct mistakes? And so on...

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Charles 9
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Re: Typical

"Although a ten-character password has less information than an entire script, it isn't organized in a way that our brains appear to be used to."

Futhermore, something that random is hard to MAKE a mnemonic against, so not even "memory theater" works well with it. Passphrases at least can employ memory theater, which is why they're easier to remember, but then you run into the sheer number of passwords problem, and when you get to double memory theater (one to know which site and the other to recall the passphrase), we start to trip up. And let's not start with people who just plain have bad memories...

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Enough is ENOUGH: It's time to flush Flash back to where it came from – Hell

Charles 9
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It wasn't so much that video streaming was the only thing they bothered with as video was the only thing they could come to an agreement. When it comes to more interactive elements, there are such entrenched interests that consensus was impossible As it is now. What are you going to use to replace Flash that (a) isn't buggier then Flash (that removes JS and Java, both error-prone), (b) that everyone will agree to, and (c) won't get hijacked by some entrenched interest down the road?

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Charles 9
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Re: This type of mentality is irrational, bordering stupidity.

"They make excellent games with only a scary amount of JavaScript. No flash to be seen."

You should read further. He's saying JavaScript is just as bad.

But here's the rub. If you remove Flash and JS, what the heck do you use to code highly-interactive web content (that consumers actually want--just ask Facebook)? What can you use that's cross-platform and with fewer holes than a wheel of Emmentaler?

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Obama's budget packs HUGE tax breaks for poor widdle tech giants

Charles 9
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Re: hmm

How do you get the money out of the tax haven when said haven has sovereign power of its own and would defend itself if anyone tried to intrude?

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Increased gov spy powers are NOT the way to stay safe against terrorism

Charles 9
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Re: It is this simple...

But to accept a limit is to accept that we could be next, which goes against our survival instinct.

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Microsoft tells big biz: No free Windows 10 for you, crack wallets open

Charles 9
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Re: It just doesn't matter

You can't remote desktop without a desktop, and the software selection in Windows is still much superior to any other platform in certain markets such as games.

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Super-cookie crumbles: Verizon vows to kill off hated zombie stalkers

Charles 9
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Re: Weasel words

Until you learn that firm is the only provider of something you absolutely need. Ah, captive markets...

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BYOD is NOT the Next Biggest Thing™: Bring me Ye Olde Lappetoppe

Charles 9
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Re: Uh?

So what happens when the demand comes from someone over your head?

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What will happen to the oil price? Look to the PC for clues

Charles 9
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Re: Allow me to further this analogy.

In case you haven't noticed, all those alternatives have strings attached: they're costly, don't scale well, AND involve lots of toxics themselves. AFAIK, there's no free lunch unless you can point us somewhere we haven't looked.

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IBM punts cryptotastic cloudy ID verification services

Charles 9
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Re: IBM and "The Man" do not need to be involved

Problem is, bureaus like DMV have been shown to either (1) leave your supposed-to-be-private info laying around for others to steal or (2) go well beyond their remit and (a) share their data with other bureaus who really shouldn't have it or (b) data mine it themselves to create profiles that leap to conclusions. You can claim it as a necessary evil, but there are those who are starting to think, "Is it?"

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Charles 9
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Re: IBM and "The Man" do not need to be involved

A well-funded attacker can throw resources at ANY program, audited or not, simply because programs by necessity have a certain structure in order for the CPU to execute them. Plus the attacker will almost always have greater motivation than the original coder to find the exploits. That's why closed sources aren't a good defense and why defenses like ASLR and DEP can only go so far.

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Charles 9
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Re: IBM and "The Man" do not need to be involved

"Of course Bob has to trust The Man and The Cashier."

And therein lies a big problem. How can one be sure The Man (1) really is the Man and (2) won't use whatever knowledge it's gleaning now against you. We're trying to introduce a system of trust in an increasingly paranoid world: one where the answer for whom to trust is increasingly, "No one, and certainly not The Man."

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Charles 9
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Re: IBM and "The Man" do not need to be involved

We get that part. But who's going to vouch for it? IOW, who's going to be Trent? This is currently one of the biggest problems with identity and security on the Net today: the matter of trust and it being subverted. So far as we know, no one's been able to figure out how Alice and Bob can prove their identities without some sort of Trent to vouch for them. Trouble is, who vouches for Trent?

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Charles 9
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Re: I like the concept

The trick will be the trusted authority. When Gene can subvert Trent, who can you trust anymore?

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How's this for customer service: Comcast calls bloke an A**HOLE – and even puts it in print

Charles 9
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Re: Breathtaking

Unfortunately, under the legal definition, it can't be a public utility until the government owns it.

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Charles 9
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Re: Breathtaking

"Low Earth Orbiting satellites will put a huge dent in fixed line internet, perhaps not immediately, but the demise of digging up roads and laying cable is written."

I doubt it, given the sheer physical limitations on wireless spectrum no matter how much you stretch it. Like it or not, when higher than high speed is a must, you're just going to have to get dirty.

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Charles 9
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"(can you suggest suitable kit for landline and mobile?)"

For landlines, your average answering machine should be able to perform a call record or digest of some sort. Just engage it while the call is in progress, and it will be treated like a standard message.

As for mobile, that depends. Some ROMs have the feature built-in, others can get an app to do the job. Based on your phone, YMMV.

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FCC will vote to cut off 41 million broadband users this Thursday*

Charles 9
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Re: It's all weasel words and marketing....

Well, to be frank, many times the bottleneck is outside the ISP's control, meaning they really have no way to reliably guarantee a transmission rate unless it's coming from within their network. I'd love to have the FCC enforce guaranteed minimum speeds, but there's no practical way to enforce it.

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Charles 9
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Re: horse and cart

"Much like people didn't need to upgrade from horse and cart to the car."

If someone lacked access to petrol but had plenty of pasture, the horse would still be the practical option.

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Listen up, AT&T, this could be YOU NEXT: $40m sting for throttling 'unlimited' mobile data

Charles 9
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Re: and in the UK ?

It wasn't the speeds that were the issue but the hidden data caps, basically breaking the definition of "unlimited". I suspect people have started suing for false advertising, and the FCC would rather set a standard than have any allegations of collusion end up in the federal courts where they have less control.

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Care.data refuseniks will be DENIED CANCER SCREENING invites

Charles 9
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Re: require a whole new system

So you absolutely need a new system but trust no one to get it right, not even yourself...

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'Linus Torvalds is UNFIT for the WORKPLACE!' And you've given the world what, exactly?

Charles 9
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Re: Sometimes ...

Perhaps going even further back. Wasn't that at least one of Machiavelli's arguments in The Prince in favor of autocracy: that sometimes, you just have to take the direct approach?

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Charles 9
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" If only it was modular..."

Oh, wait...

many modern PC kernels are modular (both the NT and Linux kernels are modular). Some things are shunted to user space for security while others (like graphics) are kept in kernel space for performance reasons. The complaint should be which parts should be where.

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Charles 9
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Re: How bad is Torvalds?

"The vast majority of desktop pcs can boot to MS-DOS. Only yesterday I was reaching for a USB floppy drive"

But what are you going to do beyond that? Trust me; I've tried. Most hard drives aren't formatted FAT16 anymore (about the only format MS-DOS will be able to see). DOS TSR drivers to support other filesystems and bus architectures? Don't count on it. Just about everything these days depends on a flat memory model which isn't built into MS-DOS. And 64-bit computing on an OS that's 16-bit? (rolls eyes).

About the only way to run MS-DOS in any practical manner these days is by virtual machine.

And there's still the unanswered chicken-and-egg issue of consumer-oriented non-mobile-friendly software.

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Charles 9
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Re: How bad is Torvalds?

"Although, I've personally never understood why some people were so bothered about Desktop dominance. As long as I can run what I choose, frankly you're free to run MSDOS if that's what you prefer."

Actually, IIRC, MS-DOS doesn't like modern hardware. And as for desktop dominance, consider the games market. Even with Valve's recent push, 8 or 9 out of every 10 games that comes out ignores Linux. About half are Windows-only. And then there are all those other pieces of productivity software the average person needs once in a while (like tax preparation software) but isn't available for Linux (sure there's the Web, but only if your tax situation is relatively simple). So the question of desktop dominance goes to the "chicken and egg" problem of desktop Linux. People won't go there if their software doesn't work on it, but software developers won't code for Linux without sufficient consumer market presence.

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'One day, YOU won't be able to SENSE the INTERNET,' vows Schmidt

Charles 9
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Re: "with your permission and all of that"

He's saying blocking Google at all prevents the sites from running at all. And if there are no alternative sites that aren't beholden to Google, you're just SOL. Your only choices then are to bend over or to get kicked out.

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Charles 9
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Re: "...a highly personalised, highly interactive and very interesting world..."

"I forget the author who wrote the Sci Fi book on corporations becoming government, but this is another step to that happening."

Could be William Gibson. His Sprawl trilogy mentioned megacorps that were basically self-contained worlds unto themselves complete with born-and-raised yes-men. I also know Shadowrun runs on the same principle for its dystopic future.

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Some Androids can be HOSED by WiFi Direct vuln

Charles 9
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Re: It would be quite annoying...

There's also the matter of having to use Wi-Fi Direct mode, which isn't the norm (AP mode is the norm).

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ICANN orders re-evaluation of dot-gay

Charles 9
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Re: dot-inc

What about companies that match names AND are in the same country but are allowed by the USPTO because they're in different industries? For example, the name "Cracker Barrel" is trademarked TWICE in the US, but both are allowed, as one is a brand name of cheese and the other is a restaurant/novelty store chain; ergo, they don't overlap. It wouldn't apply in the strictest sense here, but I could envision two companies with the same name but in different industries claiming the same CompanyName.inc. What then?

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Free Windows 10 could mean the END for Microsoft and the PC biz

Charles 9
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Re: Long Live Win XP & Win 7!

Even if a big-time remote exploit appears for XP which, due to its EOL status, will never get fixed?

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Charles 9
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Re: Only retail copies of Win7 and Win8 are eligible.

Well, given that Win7 was preselling at $49—for a retail box—there may be more eligible copies out there than you think.

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Charles 9
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"Any of the intel i series chips are more or less the same speed clock for clock. There have been some improvements, but they are incremental. Computers are no longer getting faster. The clock rates have continued to go up, yes, but much of that is artificial."

And the bet is also that multicore computing will hit some kind of limit as well?

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Charles 9
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Win7 was $49 pre-ordered about six months prior to release. And that was for a boxed retail version, not a hardware-locked OEM version.

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Charles 9
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Re: This isn't hard. It's just unbelievable.

"That clearly means as long as machine is supported by the OEM who shipped it. "

And if your computer's homebuilt? Where does the line get drawn?

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Charles 9
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Re: There is no such thing as "free"...

Pro and Ultimate versions are enterprise-oriented and are not the target of this upgrade program IIRC (since these are usually done via enterprise license agreements that typically involve a lot of negotiation and planning). I agree this plan is mainly targeting the consumer.

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Charles 9
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"16EiB ought to be enough for anybody."

In terms of RAM, the limit is actually 8EiB. The top half of the address space is kernel space and typically reserved for memory mapping (GPU RAM, for example). In fact, no CPU on the market today is actually capable of 64 actual bits of memory addressing (the limit IIRC is 48 bits right now), but credit AMD for coming up with a way to keep things neat while still allowing room to grow into true 64-bit addressing.

That said, 8EiB is about a couple orders of magnitude or so higher than even today's high-end RAM usage. It may not be overkill in perpetuity, but the amount of time it should suffice should be longer than usual so that by the time it becomes an issue, the whole computing landscape would have changed radically along with it: to the point that bits don't really matter that much anymore.

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Swots explain how to swat CPU SNITCHES

Charles 9
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Re: Tin Foil is tha answer to the question @theodore

I recall that bit of regulation. Under FCC rules, a device cannot emit EM radiation such that it interferes with another device, nor can it reflect EM energy coming from outside (it must absorb or shunt the energy, to its detriment if need be; it's part of the same rule). Thing is, while metal shields were great for EM protection (both blocking internal radiation and shunting external radiation), it also attracted heat, another Bad Thing for electronics. IINM, the Commodore 128 suffered heat issues due to its EM shield.

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Doomsday Clock says 3 MINUTES to MIDNIGHT. Again

Charles 9
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The Cuban Missile Crisis happened too quickly for the clock to be reset. It was basically over in a matter of days, and the rate of the clock's change spans years per shift.

The closest the clock's been is two 'til. That was in 1953 when both the US and USSR tested H-bombs.

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Windows 10, day ZERO ... Will Nadella be the HERO?

Charles 9
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"Using the MVVM pattern, the front-end is entirely separate from the logic which is entirely separate from the data storage/online API/whatever."

The problem is that they can interrelate in fundamental ways. IOW, the front-end may force you to alter the logic. Same for the storage since an online app may have to cope with lack of online availability and so on.

IOW, the desktop and mobile ecosystems may not have as much in common as developers would like to believe, and the end result is that it may be better to think of them as separate worlds altogether.

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It's 2015 and default creds can brick SOHO routers

Charles 9
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Re: remote admin

Not if you use a drive-by attack to set up a proxy connection between you and the router from the inside. Also, many routers have demonstrated exploits that can expose the admin console to the WAN side.

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Ad agency Turn turns off Verizon's zombie cookies

Charles 9
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Re: Header noise

I suspect Verizon is savvy enough to be able to authenticate its real token via phone-specific information and be able to easily scrub the false ones. The length of the key is indicative of a hash value which could be derived from your phone's identity plus a secret key of Verizon's. About the only way to avoid Verizon's tagging is to use a VPN or not use Verizon, which may not be an option for, say, businesses under contract and so on. And with a pro-business Congress in session, there will be no relief from the government on this.

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New York State plots broadband future

Charles 9
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Re: Words, words, words

"The reason hgih-speed broadband is so crappy in New York City - and especially Manhattan - is very simple: Time Warner Cable is a de facto monopoly for Broadband Internet. There is zero competition - unless you count Verizon's crappy FiOS which is even worse than TWC's Cable Broadband."

You just contradicted yourself. You mentioned Verizon (and I was expecting this since one-half of Verizon was GTE). FiOS is supposed to be Fiber To The Premises: just about as good as you can get in terms of consumer broadband. I have that available where I live, and the quality is excellent enough to make it a viable competitor to the cable company. Yet you denounce this supposedly top of the line as "crappy". That indicates something is interfering with the quality of FiOS where you live, and I have to suspect it's the infrastructure.

Which goes to my point about no implosion demolition. Manhattan has been dug up so many times there's no telling what's underneath you. Meaning disturbing the ground can result in unintended consequences, and this also goes to getting right of way and especially digging permissions. Meaning Verizon is probably having a hard time putting down all the fiber it needs for good FiOS service (my location, not nearly so built up, was much easier to transition).

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