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* Posts by Charles 9

3467 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

News Corp prez threatens to pull Fox TV off the air

Charles 9
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Re: Why are you all talking about fox news?

Unlike the Big Three, FOX (the broadcast network) does not televise a nightly news show. They leave that duty to the local stations.

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German ransomware threatens with sick kiddie smut

Charles 9
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Re: Tracability

The usual way: wire transfers to mules. Wire transfers usually involve cash, so there's a break in the chain at the paying end. The mule breaks the chain at the receiving end.

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Charles 9
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Re: Catch the bastards

And if it turns out the ransomware makers are in a country with hostilities to the West?

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Charles 9
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I think I mentioned it the last time something close to this popped up. What if someone used child porn as ransomware and then compounded the threat by saying if they don't cooperate immediately, they'll relay as much personal information as it can mine to the authorities on the grounds of owning child porn, probably scatter other CP around the drive in ways hard to remove, and then make the user sweat. Now it's either pay up or go to jail (and likely worse). It may even remove itself after a while (but leave the hidden CP) so as to remove the "trojan defense".

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Bitcoin exchange: Greedy traders to blame for DDoS attack

Charles 9
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Re: End Point

That assumes the currency has a minimum denomination (the US cent or UK pence). Birtcoin is designed to allow for transactions with a smaller precision. Last I checked, the Bitcoin software can track fractional bitcoins down to eight decimals.

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Charles 9
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Re: not magic beans

Perhaps in the black markets, no, but Bitcoin aficionados have been refining the technique of performing physical transactions using Bitcoin, usually through the passing of QR Code tokens either printed on paper or displayed on mobile devices.

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Charles 9
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Re: bitcoin hosting: good idea? alternatives?

Actually, there is a tangent project to create a decentralized DNS system. It's called Namecoin. Run the name through Google and do some research. It seems a bit raw at this point, but you never know.

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Microsoft Xbox gaffe reveals cloudy arrogance

Charles 9
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Re: Been that way for a while. .

Whatever happened to getting things right the first time?

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Gartner: RIP PCs - tablets will CRUSH you this year

Charles 9
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Re: Are these the same people...

They CAN displace tools if people find they didn't really need a tool in the first place. Why use a Swiss Army Knife when the right screwdriver can do the job more cleanly?

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Charles 9
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Re: Uhm...

People will need a convincing reason to upgrade, and that has been lacking over the last several years. Windows 8 has had one VERY tepid start to its lifecycle. Even games, usually the stalwart of the PC's cutting edge, has stalled in terms of performance demands (basically, if your computer has a circa 2009 CPU and a circa 2011 GPU, you can run almost all your games acceptably, at 1080p even). GPUs keep building up bit by bit but the CPU demand has plateaued in the consumer sphere (most of the push now is in server space where virualization is helping to keep up the pressure).

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Charles 9
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Re: Good

Even that's being challenged by cheap ARM computers (especially the Raspberry Pi) with GPUs decent enough for the job. Many Android tablets have strong enough codec support (admitted it still has some teething issues here and there, but this will only improve), and some companies are trying their hand selling Android computer boxes on the cheap.

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Charles 9
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Re: One thing you can use PC for

Maybe, but the bean counters may decide that software doesn't really require the cutting edge at this point and decide to hold off on upgrade cycles. Fewer businesses upgrading their PCs are going to slow the market down.

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Charles 9
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Re: Gartner are full of it

The point he's trying to make is that you're keeping your existing box rather than stepping up to something like a hex-core or the like. More and more people are finding their existing machines are "good enough" and sticking with them. The software shifts gradually, but it hasn't reached a point where people are compelled to upgrade good dual- and quad-core machines. Upgrade cycles are being reconsidered as companies notice that software demands aren't growing so much. The end result: fewer new PCs get shuffled around, slowing the market.

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Provider of FIFA goal line tech chosen, tracks ball in space and time

Charles 9
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Re: At least they haven't chosen the ludicrous Hawkeye...

The ball DOES change. Tennis balls are relatively speaking not that stiff. They're rubbery for the most part and--unlike most balls in sports the size of your fist or smaller--hollow,, so they can deform as they bounce, especially when they hit at speed (think your typical first service). Part of Hawk-Eye's trick is that it recognizes this deformation and accounts for it in the line call.

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Charles 9
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I think the tech uses several, placed at different angles in case one or more of the cameras is covered by a body. A football goal is bigger than a hockey one, so more cameras are recommended for proper coverage.

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Charles 9
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Re: Fog, snow, hail

That's probably why the plethora of cameras: the more angles you have, the more likely the system can get a clear enough image to make a decision.

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Charles 9
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Re: Encrypted radio signal

It's meant for authentication purposes, to ensure someone on the field doesn't try to fake a goal by secretly transmitting a false signal.

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Charles 9
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I recall that one isn't heavily in use because it involves modifying the ball (which requires delicate work to keep it to exact regulation specs) plus has difficulty showing when a driven (and thus slightly deformed) ball completely crosses: the shape changes in-flight.

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Tech is the biggest problem facing archiving

Charles 9
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Re: Proprietary backup format = No backup

The trouble is that ANY format can eventually become either proprietary or otherwise obsolete. Take your optical discs. More and more computers are showing up with no optical drives to speak of. So what happens when the time comes to actually retrieve that archived data, your drive is discovered to be knackered, and they don't make optical drives anymore (because they've moved on to things like 3-D crystal storage or something)?

I can see what's going on. It's the competing pressures of paying up to keep all this archived data and the risk that the archived data may not be there when it actually become necessary. How do you know you actually need the data...before you actually need the data? And if the threat is existential, then price no longer becomes an object.

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Production-ready ZFS offers cosmic-scale storage for Linux

Charles 9
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Re: Open source purity

Iceweasel and the result are the result of trademark issues. The Mozilla Foundation doesn't want anyone using a modified version of its software to carry its trademarks: in essence, "Don't use our name with your version." Now, trademarks are a separate issue from software licensing, so they compromise: if you compile Firefox straight up, you're cool beans, but if you modify it, they require you to make your own logo for your version. They even give you free use of the globe icon which is common to all Mozilla products. Just don't use THEIR logos.

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Charles 9
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Re: License madness

"Why on earth would you want the file system driver in the kernel?"

Because if it isn't in the kernel, it can't be used as a baseline partition. You can't boot userspace filesystems because userspace doesn't appear until later in the boot process.

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Charles 9
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Re: Must say it..

Hard to do when there aren't enough atoms or energy to keep that much data on the planet Earth, just as you can't cram a baker's dozen eggs in an egg carton without breaking something. ZFS limits were intentionally set to be beyond PHYSICAL limitations.

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Music resale service ReDigi loses copyright fight with Capitol Records

Charles 9
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Re: ok - I'll bite

"Apparently we are living in a world where the consumer is no longer buying stuff but licensing it. And government and legislature are supporting this. Marvellous thing, democracy."

It's happening everywhere in the electronic world--everyone's going to a service economy where you never BUY anything but just RENT it. OnLive was basically a game rental service, many pieces of commercial software are moving to a subscription model.

They're just finally applying a basic tenet of economics: there's almost always more money in REPEAT business. And if the only business around is repeat business, you can create a naturally captive market.

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Review: HTC One

Charles 9
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Re: Everyone is obsessed with SD cards and batteries.

Have you had your phone undergo a hard freeze? I have, to the point that not even the power button works. That's the main reason I prefer a removable battery: it's a last resort in the event nothing else works--not even a reset button.

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Charles 9
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Re: YEEEAAAHHH! IR REMOTE ONCE AGAIN!

Must've gotten positive reviews for the feature on the Galaxy Tabs (I have a 7.0 Plus). It seems to work better than their network-based remote control program (which tends to Force Close on me).

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Charles 9
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Re: Clerk

When the kid needs to go and the map's out of date, you start appreciating an always-up-to-date map program that can point you to a bathroom quick. Same for traffic detours and so on; I don't know about you, but I don't intend to wait three hours for an accident to clear up when I could've diverted to surface streets at the last exit. As for the web browsing, it's a one-day sale and you're comparison shopping. By the time you get home, the item may be gone or the sale ended, so a quick snap to the web for some info helps you to make a smart choice on the spot (sorry, Napoleon, no time to go home). A smartphone may not be for you, but for some of us, we find it most handy and are willing to shell out a little more (in my case, $40 a month) for the capability.

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Charles 9
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Re: No mention in the review about 4G, LTE higher speed internet - the phone supports multi-band LTE

That would put the LTE modem of the One at a Category 3 (100 dn/50 up).

As for the bands, the LTE bands tend to be a bit more precise, so perhaps it would be better to know the +/- of the different MHz ranges so as to know which bands they cover. That said, based on what I'm seeing, this spectrum seems to have a European focus with some American accommodation. Interesting they only list three frequencies, as the S4 claims six; it's something to compare against.

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Charles 9
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Re: No swappable battery, no sale

Just out of curiosity, do they make USB chargers that can affix to bicycle wheels so that they can charge the phone while you ride (as well as provide a little extra load for a workout)?

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Forget the invisibility cloak: Boffins invent INVISIBILITY FISHNETS

Charles 9
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Re: Oddly shaped objects

* Why don't they put corners on cars nowdays? They're all just blobs, not a single straight edge by which to judge parking. And they have distorting wing mirrors to make you cross-eyed just as you want to change lanes on the motorway, it's bonkers!

Streamlining. It goes to aerodynamics. You will notice many airplanes (commercial and military) try to limit the number of sharp corners on their bodies as they affect airflow and thus fuel efficiency.

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Charles 9
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Re: Surely Not Invisible

Multistatic radar can defeat that kind of stealth because it works by detecting changes in the ambient radio noise. To fool such a system, you need a cloak-type device that actually diverts the radio waves without altering their course; otherwise, a sensitive enough radio receiver will detect the alteration. And the "fishnet" noted in the article will stick out like a sore thumb--current stealth technology already relies on scattering. To the receiver, both would look like a dead zone.

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You know how your energy bills are SO much worse than they were?

Charles 9
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Re: WAMSR

Based on the discussions in that same forum, many are questioning whether or not the design is actually sound. It's basically a variant on an MSR and these have troubles of their own, to say nothing about the fuel cycle which has a high potential for poisoning requiring some long standing times for aspects of the fuel.

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Charles 9
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Re: Nuclear, nuclear, nuclear, nuclear....

And smaller Generation IV microreactors reduce proliferation concerns by simply using too little fuel for an adversary to consider worth the effort (especially once it's buried tens of meters underground).

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Charles 9
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Re: Nuclear, nuclear, nuclear, nuclear....

If you go to the comments, you'll see that most of us are sceptical of its practicality. After all, it's not like the design has been vetted by actual nuclear engineers who have to consider possibilities like a failsafe failing because the failure occurred in an isolated area that failsafe was not designed to cover. IOW, we'll believe it when we see it.

Frankly, I wouldn't mind seeing more Generation IV reactors being built, but there's always something in the way...

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BIGGEST DDoS ATTACK IN HISTORY hammers Spamhaus

Charles 9
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Re: I hope we can all agree...

That won't work in this case as the attack was distributed. Even if you limit requests to 1 per second, the attack contacted SEVERAL THOUSAND of them at once in a barrage. Think of it like this. You tell a few of your buds you're having a party. Each of them tells a bunch of THEIR friends; next thing you know, you don't have a refrigerator (or perhaps house) big enough to accommodate the party.

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Nvidia unveils Minority Report-style face-bot tech

Charles 9
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Re: "So how is this going to be used in the real world?"

I think most of us figure Hollywood will get the most use out of it at first. At the very least, when it comes to final render, they don't have to worry so much about realtime rendering; it's the facial accuracy they'll want more than anything. This level of facial detail is perhaps still rather too complex for use at the consumer level, but it shows a tantalizing hint of the future--say, 7-10 years down the road.

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Charles 9
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Re: Hmm...

When you add the "per Second", you normally Capitalize the S to make it a proper part of the acronym. So it's either "2 TFLOPs per second" or "2 TFLOPS".

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Flooding market with cheap antivirus kit isn't going to help ANYONE

Charles 9
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Re: What if ...

Until they learn what your BIOS or EFI system is and infect THAT. At that point, even nuking from orbit may not be an option anymore. Plus what if you have to go BACK to that one system eventually?

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Charles 9
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Re: Something getting loaded into RAM? ...

That's assuming the USB distro you used was clean, but then you get into the whole "who watches the watchers" thing.

Plus what if the malware, even in RAM, can privilege escalate to root, sniff out other drives attached to the system, mount them, detect installed OS's, and find ways to infect them from there? If some APT hasn't caught on to the idea of infecting offline systems, they probably will in future.

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Software bug halts Curiosity: Nuke lab bot in safe mode

Charles 9
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Re: 32 or 64 bit "checksums"???

I think comms are restricted because trying to send anything past the sun means it gets irradiated on the way. Perhaps a conservative estimate will be that at least HALF the bits are likely to get flipped. With a failure rate of over 50%, odds are against the signal getting through, so they assume a transmission will fail and just won't do it.

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Charles 9
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Re: So *not* a buffer overflow error in fact.

Shouldn't that be JMP (or BRA, depending on the architecture) +0x02? This instruction would have to be two-byte,and you have to clear the instruction itself, after all.

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Feds cuff ex-NASA boffin at airport amid state-secret leak scare

Charles 9
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Re: Never travel direct; never use a credit card; never book a flight to eventual destination ...

Not in this day and age. IIRC almost all smartphones use a standard 3.6-3.7v voltage. A savvy investigator would have a way to fake a battery using those specs and knowledge of where the correct pins are located.

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FCC waves big fines at political robocallers

Charles 9
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Most of the three strikes laws qualify the classes of crime in which they apply. Many have differing levels of punishment. For example, three misdemeanors equals a felony charge. The mandatory "20 to life" sentences are usually restricted to three violent felonies, though some jurisdictions are looser and just use three felonies.

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Charles 9
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Re: This is why US cells pay to receive phone calls.

I think one reason it keeps going is that many callers have either gone flat (mine is flat) or have such generous allowances that it really doesn't matter anymore. It only really becomes an issue if you're using the most basic prepaid services, and those people tend to be naturally stingy about their cell time (they also know how to ignore a call).

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CCTV hack takes casino for $33 MILLION in poker losses

Charles 9
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Re: The Newtonian Casino

There was a TV series in the US called, "Breaking Vegas," which was all about true stories of outwitting casinos (not just in Vegas). It was based on a pilot special which described the time a college professor and a few students became well-trained Blackjack card counters, and it went on from there. I recall one episode having a family of (I think) Latinos training themselves to study roulette wheels for bias.

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Charles 9
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Re: Measure Twice Cut Once

And how do you stop insiders? What about the connection to the commission?

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Charles 9
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Re: $33 million in EIGHT HANDS?

Don't make such a big deal about the AMOUNT of the take. The article notes that this was a very exclusive room, indicating this was a high-stakes cash game. In such an environment, six- to seven-figure wagers can and will happen. For all we know, the table had $50,000 antes and blinds in the $100,000-$200,000 range (if a community card game like Texas Holdem was being played). IIRC such high stakes are not limited to poker. IIRC, baccarat was famously known as a favorite among high-stakes gamblers.

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Charles 9
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Joke

Re: Faraday cage

I sincerely hope you were just joking on an alternate interpretation on this abbreviation of "Persona Non Grata".

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Charles 9
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Re: Brings a new consideration to the phrase

1. If we look at the Netherlands, we see the possibility of drug use going DOWN because the "forbidden fruit" effect is gone (some people will partake simply because it's illegal--sticking it to The Man and all).

2. Once it's legal, drugs can be regulated. Manufacturers can be inspected and quality controls enacted. IOW, you can help make sure that whatever goes out is as safe as you can expect from it. The users than inherit whatever risks are inherent with the drug.

3. You can still ban specific drugs for significantly justifiable reasons (for example, drugs with a very easy tendency to overdose so whose safety can't be controlled).

Take a look at the US and alcohol. Was alcohol easier to control DURING Prohibition...or AFTER Prohibition?

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Samsung's new Galaxy S 4: iPhone assassin or Android also-ran?

Charles 9
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Some of us have BEEN waiting.

Well, it depends on what phones we have right now. Your phones are pretty recent. Mine was released about three years ago and is starting to get long in the tooth (even Opera Mobile starts to chug on any decent website, even when in mobile mode--512MB just doesn't carry well these days; my big thing was its hardware keyboard). Plenty of us have even older phones. It's not like we jump every year, but when things start getting clunky, we start making considerations. I moved from an N95 to my original Android phone for the same reason. I did not regret the decision as I got lots of use out of it. Once the S4 comes out, I'll start looking for live demonstrations to get some hands-on time and see if it's worth it. What I really want to know is if anyone other than HTC (sorry, but no removable battery or SD slot is a deal-breaker) is going to come out with similar devices before year's end. AFAIK, nothing yet.

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Charles 9
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Re: As long as you can turn off bits.

BT keyboard support has been standard fare since Android 3 Honeycomb IIRC.

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