* Posts by Charles 9

5086 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Intel's Compute Sticks stick it to Windows To Go, Chromecast

Charles 9
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For the record, Intel has a spec sheet on the STCK1A32WFC, the higher-end of the ICS's. According to the spec, the CPU is an Atom Z3735F which is one of those with a built-in graphics unit. According to ARK, it's your basic Intel HD Graphics units with a clock range going from 311-646 MHz. According to Kodi, it's enough for H.264 up to 1080p but not H.265.

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Charles 9
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Re: Yours will be for movies over ethernet?

Because the Pi is ARM-based, which pretty much requires a blob since ARM implementations differ from setup to setup and there's no standardization concerning these setups: most of which are in fact protected as trade secrets. Furthermore, some of the stuff in the Pi's CPU is actually protected by patents which requires licensing.

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Charles 9
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Re: Yours will be for movies over ethernet?

The Pi tends to be underpowered in media playback last I checked, especially at 1080p and/or H.265, and firsthand experience tells me it tends to hang when trying it for extended periods. The article notes the ICS handles 1080p smoothly (albeit probably using H.264).

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Charles 9
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Re: pricing?

It's in the article: $110 for the cheaper 1GB model with Ubuntu, $149 for the more expensive 2GB model with 8.1 Bing. Since it supports USB booting, you're free to change the installed OS within reason. Still, for a media playback device, it sounds tempting...but did anyone try this stick out with the new H.265 standard?

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Mozilla testing very private browsing mode

Charles 9
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Re: But does it block the java script too?

"If you were interested in something, and found a site, it was always linked to other sites by these to other, similar sites."

But then you had to FIND the one site in the first place, creating a Chicken-and-Egg problem.

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Charles 9
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Re: So...

Aren't you afraid you'll block the important security updates that are likely using the same channels?

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Rise up against Oracle class stupidity and join the infosec strike

Charles 9
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Re: Ada - the only infrastructure that's reliable & secure by design

"If boards understood the massive risk they face from IT, they'd insist on Ada now, and throw out all the closed-source rubbish."

Thing is, most boards have to answer to the investors, and many investors these days are quite short-sighted.

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Charles 9
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Re: Your solidarity is not so solid

"When I read the Reg, I don't need or want the extra overhead of TLS. For that matter, when I post comments, I don't need or want it. I don't care if someone goes through the (not trivial) effort of impersonating me here."

You'll start caring when someone finagles the identity you get here to steal a more significant of your identities elsewhere. Plus there's the prospect of having malware injected through your in-the-clear transmission by someone along the TCP/IP chain.

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Charles 9
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Re: I wonder how many people who commented on this article....

He's saying Google and Android are part of the problem. IOW, people using Android mobes to comment on invasions of privacy are basically hypocrites.

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Charles 9
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Re: Civilisations?

But did any of those past civilizations have the power we have today, where a chosen few, if the need arose, could easily eradicate a few million people without much in the way of outside assistance? How would the oppressed masses feel if even their combined might were no match for, say, a nuke in their backyard? Even worse, what if these oppressors felt, in the final analysis, if they couldn't win, then MAD would be considered preferable to ceding power (Death Before Dishonor)?

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Charles 9
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Re: Industry pressure

Markets can't self-regulate because markets are run by humans...and humans, in spite of popular belief, default to irrational behavior. Essentially, they run on emotions first and logic only when the former doesn't get in the way. It's for this reason that things like lotteries (that play on inherent optimism) can make a killing. It's why you have runs on the bank and panic spikes.

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Charles 9
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Re: It can't happen to us...

"The fact that they chose to ignore the warning is purely indicative of stupidity, payola, incompetence or whatever but, now that the FBI, Department of Defense and others actually have had their fingerprint database stolen, how confident do you think they will be in the next snake oil salesman?"

Probably just as confident as they were last time. The people making the decisions now probably weren't the ones who made the decision when the fingerprint scanners appeared, have been lulled into complacency, and will willingly make the same mistakes again, banking on persistence paying off before insanity hits.

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Charles 9
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Re: Easy to bitch about other people's work

But in each and every one of those scenarios, there's something between the IT and the life involved. Since IT is mostly nonphysical, it's hard to DIRECTLY pin the blame on the IT to the point the average joe has no recourse but to blame it and nothing in between.

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Charles 9
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Re: Be careful out there kids....

"You mean something like this?"

Even that's going to be shaky. See, with IT you're mostly dealing with virtual, non-physical things. There's always at least one degree of separation between IT and your life. In this case, faulty compilation, not a flaw in the code itself, was the primary problem. It could also be one of a hundred other things between the code and the life that proves the linchpin. Yet it has to be that DIRECT connection that will make people pay direct attention to the actual code enough to make it matter.

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Charles 9
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Re: Nice idea

"That worldview is fucking appalling."

It's also the only one THAT ACTUALLY WORKS. Welcome to Reality. Why else has no other beast on Earth tried what we're doing?

"Jesus H mother of goddamned donkeyfucking christ, what the hell happened to us that we've forgotten so much, so fast?"

We've come to the realization that, in the final analysis, it's every man for himself. Nice guys finish last, and if you don't pass on to the next generation, you might as well be whizzing in the wind...

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How much of ONE YEAR's Californian energy use would WIPE OUT the DROUGHT?

Charles 9
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Re: Big dam.

Except some lifeforms rely on the brackish water you get at estuaries (the borderline zone between the river and the ocean), making them some pretty important and pretty sensitive environmental areas. Anyway, you forget the Colorado River, which is already overtapped to the point it usually doesn't make it to the Gulf of California.

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Charles 9
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Re: Hogwash

But it won't return to the ocean in the same way. Some of it will come in fresh, lower local salinity while the rest of it (the waste from the desal plants) will come in too concentrated. And note that most marine life is very sensitive to local salinity.

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Charles 9
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I think solar stills suffer two issues versus other desalination methods: they don't scale well where volume is needed, and they're inconsistent which can be a problem when you need a steadier flow.

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Boffins dump the fluids to build solid state lithium battery

Charles 9
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Re: Another week...

"This is a tech NEWS website. If you want to know what is available to buy now, check a retail website like Amazon."

It's just that a lot of these "new technology" announcements turn out to be vapourware, and we get all hyped up over nothing. Much better by far that we hear news of technologies going into actual trials of a decent scale or, even better, preparing for a mass-market rollout, meaning we actually have something to look forward to.

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Boffins nail 2FA with 'ambient sound' login for the lazy

Charles 9
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The thing about those tokens is that they're not suitable for the average person, which is the level of paranoia we're reaching, where EVERYTHING needs a second factor but not everyone has that second factor on hand.

Plus, as noted with the RSA incident, CPRNG algos can be stolen.

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Charles 9
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"At my employer for example possession of a mobile phone on an operations floor is an instant sacking offence - they are that concerned about any recording devices, whether audio or visual."

Just for the record, why the paranoia? Top Secret workings, concerns of industrial espionage, or confidentiality issues?

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Charles 9
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Re: what people say and what people do

"In general, general users are underwhelmed by security measures, nobody cares"

So how do you MAKE them care without risking their lives in the process (about the only thing that FORCES people to care)?

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Charles 9
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"Some form is biometric device is far preferable."

But what happens when someone copies your biometrics and steals your identity?

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Charles 9
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Re: @Charles 9 - This from a security team!!?

"I lean towards the 'sack them for undermining security' solution, rather than weakening overall security to make their lives easier."

Which quickly gets reversed when you learn the one demanding the relaxation is ABOVE rather than BELOW you.

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Charles 9
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If your reception is so bad even an SMS is hit or miss, you basically don't have a practical second factor to work with, which means you're SOL.

So that leaves a big unanswered question. How do you do 2FA when lots of people don't even have a second factor to work with?

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Charles 9
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Re: This from a security team!!?

But you also have to consider the secure-vs-easy scale. If you try to make the second factor too onerous, people will say, "Sod this!" and look for shortcuts; failing that, they'll abandon the whole works. How do you do secure in such an environment?

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Perhaps middle-aged blokes SHOULDN'T try 34-hour-long road trips

Charles 9
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"We are all crazy drivers which is why jonny cabs will become the only option."

Until you find out that two Johnny Cabs programmed to two different programs by two different companies don't necessarily get along, especially when their directives (like in your example above) directly conflict.

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Intel left a fascinating security flaw in its chips for 16 years – here's how to exploit it

Charles 9
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Re: data treated as code

"So did 8086. Code segment, data segment, stack segment, et al. In practice these pointers were often set at the same address, which kind of defeats the point."

In Real Mode, once memory cleared 16 bits, the code and data segments could and frequently did occupy different 64K segments of memory. About the only time the CS and DS were the same was in Tiny (.COM rather than .EXE) compiles meant to fit completely into a single 64K segment.

Protected Mode meant 32-bit programming which meant access of up to 4GB of memory in an age where even 8 and eventually 256MB was considered high. This meant a flat memory model and that deprecated segments.

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You've been Drudged! Malware-squirting ads appear on websites with 100+ million visitors

Charles 9
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Re: Isn't it about time...

Many malware are now VM-aware and are likely AV-aware (or worse, AV-sabotaging) to avoid honeypots, so they won't react to such a scan. And the give and take has an unintended consequence as well. Soon, malware researchers will eventually have to develop honeypots that mimic humans to the point they can pass a Turing Test. Once that happens, the malware writers will usurp the research and create malware attacks indistinguishable at the endpoints from humans...

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Charles 9
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Then you're not working from the inside of an enterprise. Many enterprise units contain control sites that require Flash or other compromising features just to operate. And since these frontends are attached to highly-expensive, usually-still-being-amortized hardware, you're never gonna get the bean counters to put up for replacements.

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Charles 9
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FAIL

Not without losing access to sites that require Flash to operate, and some of them are either hosts to exclusive content or are business control sites that can't be ignored or replaced.

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Imation ejects its removable disk biz, hands it to Sphere 3D

Charles 9
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Re: I'm puzzled..

RDX drives are rated better for cold (long-term) storage. Most hard drives on the market are only warrantied for 3, 5 years, maybe 7 on the outside. RDX drives are supposed to maintain their data cold for up to 30 years. They're also shock-resistant by design, as the spec requires them to maintain integrity even after a 1m drop, something that could occur if Murphy strikes during a changeout.

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Samsung phablet phrenzy brings mobile payments into the age of WIRELESS TAPE

Charles 9
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And given (1) no one's apparently tried to overload a cassette head's magnet to produce a similar item in the past and (2) the device is performing something nontrivial given no one else has tried to do it and (3) this also involves the carefully-timed emulation of a magstripe swipe which involves digital-analog conversion that does not exist in the all-analog cassette adapter, this makes it a nontrivial derivative of an existing invention, which DOES qualify for a patent.

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Charles 9
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Re: I wonder what the commentariat of this site are going to do

Just search "exploding iPhones" (all of which are sealed) and you'll get a laundry list. I recently swapped out the battery of my S4 after over two years because it was starting to bulge dangerously, so I can speak of the dangers firsthand.

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Charles 9
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No, the OP says they work at contactless range, up to a few inches. Cassette adaptors only work at contact range, right up against the playback head. I've broken open a few of them myself to see how they work.

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Charles 9
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Then the phones can use THAT. That's the point. Anything that can take a stripe can take this.

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Charles 9
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So if an American with a Chip card comes along, the retailers are SOL?

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Charles 9
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Contactless took a slide due to retailers wanting control of the transaction. Only when Apple Pay came along did it start a comeback because the retailers didn't want to snub Apple and its loyal base. As for Chip and PIN, the transition's in progress. Many retailers have installed Chip-readable terminals but haven't turned the readers on yet. Mostly it's the third-party readers that can do it right now. BTW, most of these new terminals can also do contactless, but like the Chip reader, most retailers leave it turned off on preference. As for a phone emulating a Chip card, the physics of the reader and the design of the cards will likely preclude integration.

PS. Early experience with the Chip notes that using it is slower, especially on low-value transactions, than the stripe, which may turn off some people who already have zero-liability on small-ticket (no need to sign) transactions (as do the retailers).

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Charles 9
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"No doubt that this has been patented, even though it's the same technology used in those line audio to cassette tape adaptors we all had in our cars before in-car CD players became the norm ten years ago."

Actually, cassette adapters utilize heads similar to those used by the playback, except they're used in reverse, to induce magnetism in the heads instead of detect them. Crack one open and you'll see it really isn't all that complicated. About the only things inside are the induction head, some electronics to convert the line-level audio in to a level comparable to that stored on tapes, and some takeup mechanics to ensure the player's on the correct playback side.

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Sane people, I BEG you: Stop the software defined moronocalypse

Charles 9
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Re: A better analogy

" A better system would be to garnish 50% - 75% of the killer's wages for 10 years or whatever and give it all to the victims. That creates a far higher incentive to not drive drunk,"

Or it creates a far higher incentive not to have a decent job and instead just turn to crime and the black market where everything goes under the table. The fines won't mean much if it's 75% of $0.

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Sick of politicians robo-calling you? Bin your landline, says the FCC

Charles 9
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Re: What about VOIP?

And what happens when the telemarketers use techniques to get around the blockers such as by using disguised numbers?

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Charles 9
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Re: I'm thankful I don't live in the US

You ever thought the callers are actually kinky enough to get off on their own drivel?

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Patching a fragmented, Stagefrightened Android isn't easy

Charles 9
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Re: What a shoddily designed OS.

"Meanwhile, Windows runs on millions if not billions of disparate configurations, and users can pretty much upgrade the day the new OS is released."

Those millions of PCs happen to run on standardized hardware pushed due to need to have a common clone design back in the 80's which grew from there. The phone market matured differently, with multiple highly-competitive firms delivering proprietary, often Trade-Secret- and Patent-protected all-in-one designs that ticked the major box of power efficiency. Such an ecosystem prevents a one-size-fits-all design and because Trade Secrets and Patents are involved (many of them being linchpins), not even Google could force the manufacturers to toe the line.

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Charles 9
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Re: A general problem

And if they sell direct to international customers over the Internet?

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Charles 9
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Re: Bright side

"Fit for Purpose" laws can trump contracts, even ones with "No Liability" clauses.

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Charles 9
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Re: "it needs to push carriers to push over-the-air updates promptly after fixes become available."

It's more than that because of the automatic negotiation and the fact they can tie it to your existing number: something IIRC SIP can't do.

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Samsung says micro-sats could blanket the world with Internet

Charles 9
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Re: Antenna gain

"It makes some sense for users in really sparse areas, but not for high density cities, etc, where putting in some fibre and a few mobile base stations operating at frequencies that penetrate building is going to work much better."

But what about a place like New York, which is already so built up that trying to add anything else, even fiber, is a project instead of an operation due to having to dig around so much (still-operational) crap AND is a concrete jungle so dense that trying to get even 700Mhz waves through is a crapshoot?

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Charles 9
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Re: Radio is so 20th century

Actually, you'd think what they want is masers (substitute light for microwave). Thing is, tight-beam communications on mobile bases suffer a huge drawback: the need for steering.

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Cisco network kit warning: Watch out for malware in the firmware

Charles 9
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Re: Holy *crap*

Actually, there's NO better way. It's like with the front door. If someone steals or copies your keys, you're screwed. As long as there are criteria for SOMEONE to get in, someone else can mimic that someone enough to pass the criteria also.

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ICANN chairman loses mind over his domain-name privacy shakeup

Charles 9
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Re: Another Option?

"Can the computer be programmed to follow some simple rules that mimic the ICANN processes? Can the software that the computer uses be perfectly open and verifiable at any time by any interested party?

Isn't it time we stop giving responsibility to humans that have naturally human foibles?"

Only one problem. Computers are programmed by humans (if not, you have a RotM scenario). They can sneak stuff behind the scenes and hide the secret code from prying eyes. Think the rogue compiler or rogue hardware scenario.

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