* Posts by sisk

1592 posts • joined 17 Mar 2010

Judge spanks SCO in ancient ownership of Unix lawsuit

sisk
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Ok, courts, Novel, and IBM, please pay attention:

Aim. For. The. Head.

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Re: groklaw and grokthelaw

Yeah, I thought that to. In fact my first thought was "Didn't PJ walk away from Groklaw?"

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Linux 'GRINCH' vuln is AWFUL. Except, er, maybe it isn't

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Re: Brought to you by...

As physical access is required (if the same user tries via SSH, they'll be prompted to enter a password) it's something of a non-issue

Indeed. With physical access to a machine all an attacker needs do is stick in their own disc and poke the power button to gain root access on any system. It doesn't even matter what OS the system is running at that point.

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"Vulnerability"???

Er.....what's the point of privilege escalation for a wheels user sitting at the machine? Wouldn't such a user just modify /etc/sudoers to grant themselves elevated privileges? Assuming they didn't already have the ability to do whatever they're trying that is.

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'Turn to nuclear power to save planetary ecology from renewable BLIGHT'

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Joke

Here's an idea

Let's find a way to harness all the hot air generated by people discussing climate change and green energy. That should be enough energy for the next cosmological era or two.

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BOFH: Capo di tutti capi, bah. I'm having CHICKEN JALFREZI

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Re: Can I borrow the BOFH's temporal compressor?

You managed that much? I was impressed with myself the weekend I managed to work in Guardians of the Galaxy between all the other junk that fills my weekend.

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Great story, but I've got to say I saw the end coming as soon as Gina walked into the room.

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Upchuck nation: Half a million CHUMPS now own Google Cardboard VR gear

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A sucker and his money are soon parted. Or half a million suckers as it turns out.

$20 for a bit of cardboard and a $5 pair of lenses? What are these people thinking?

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Tor takes off the gloves after sustained staffer harassment

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Your solution to the problem of someone getting their feelings hurt online is for the 'harassers' personally identifiable information to be posted publicly? By a company whose mission is to provide 'absolute anonymity'? You're hilarious.

Actually it makes sense. How many people do you know who'd willing act like your typical troll if they didn't have anonymity? The tactic works. Case in point: google Curtis Woodhouse Twitter Troll.

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Re: Cyber Bullying or a Paradox?

I just re-read the comment and undersood what he really meant, "facepalm for me"....

Let that be a lesson for you. No commenting before your first cup.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to go make some coffee.

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Mom and daughter SUE Comcast for 'smuggling' public Wi-Fi hotspot into their home

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Re: Hope they win.

Bandwidth well, you are not charged for any bandwidth used by the open wifi as that is separate.

Bandwidth in this context, as most on El Reg will be aware, is in reference to how much data the line can handle at any given moment. If you'll forgive the 'superhighway' analogy, think of your bandwidth as a four lane highway for data to travel, with each packet of data being a car. Then, when someone else gets on, you only have two lanes available for your own traffic. Therefore it takes longer for your data to get fully transferred.

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So - you thought you knew all about the INSTANT COFFEE DUNES of TITAN?

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So if there is life on Titan then it...

A) Is drunk as hell, what with all the ethanol, and

B) Has really quite terrible taste in coffee.

So about like my college room mate then.

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Google App Engine has THIRTY flaws, says researcher

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So if I'm reading this right he was doing security research on a live system without first notifying and getting permission from the host. Poor manners that. No wonder his account got shut down. Even worse he apparently has yet to speak to Google about this as he says the research "probably" looked like an attack, an indication that he's guessing, yet he's told world+dog. This is not the behavior of a reputable security researcher.

As for the holes themselves...I'm really not surprised. "Big system has security holes" is kinda a dog bites man type of story. 30 isn't even that many. Microsoft has been known to cover that many in a single (big, granted) patch Tuesday (and no, that's not a slam on MS). Tell Google and they'll either fix them or, if they're a core Java problem, work with Oracle to get them fixed.

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Ten Linux freeware apps to feed your penguin

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Re: Geany?

Nothing really, but there's more to an IDE than a text editor with syntax highlighting. I strongly favor Sublime myself, but I understand the appeal of a full fledged IDE.

Plus Sublime, not being free in either sense of the word (it's proprietary and the license is $70, or at least that was the price when I bought my license), wouldn't be in consideration for this list.

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Re: ClamTK

Inadvertently adding an .exe to an email is not a concern. Inadvertently dropping an infected file onto a file server, however, is a concern. I've seen that one happen more than once. A Linux user gets an infected file from a Windows user and passes the infection on to another Windows user or even a group of them via a shared NAS, totally unaware that he's just helped a virus propagate. Plus there's the issue than systems running Wine can sometimes be infected with Windows malware. Admittedly such an infection would be laughably easy to cleanup, but still it happens.

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Gimp? I might consider it again as and when it's gifted a user interface that mere mortals rather than the gods of image processing can understand

Oddly until I took a class on Photoshop Gimp's interface made more sense to me than Photoshop's.

Use whatever floats your boat. Having used both, though, I don't understand why anyone'd WANT to use Windows, but I'm not going to heckle someone for doing so.

EXACTLY my feeling on the matter, except that I do understand why some people would rather run Windows. In fact I've told several people to stick with Windows when they asked me about Linux. The two main reasons I'd tell someone that are if they're currently in or planning to go to school (because many classes require certain software which may not run on Linux - I learned that one the hard way when I went back) and if they primarily use their computers for gaming (because of the number of major titles that never make it to Linux and don't run under Wine).

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Re: Linux?

Doesn't seem to work on my Fedora install.

You should be able to convert the .deb to a .rpm. Look into alien.

My problem with it is that I need a note taking app that will work on basically everything. I've got Mint Debian Edition on my home computer, my work computer is Win7, as is my wife's (she needs access to some of my notes) and I have several Android devices and the iPad issued to me at the office. I need my note app to work on all of them. Looks like I'm sticking with Evernote/Nixnote for a while. Too bad because I'd really like to give Springseed a try.

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Re: Calibre, V41, HandBrake, VLC

it is less than wonderful for any conversions beyond mobi > epub

I dunno. It's never failed me for conversions. Then again, I use it mostly for managing my library since I get just about everything in epub to begin with.

Sigil is very nice for fixing horribly formatted epubs, even the "retail" ones...

Yes, yes it is.

It's also quite useful, when used in conjunction with a website mirroring program, for turning non-downloadable online language references into nicely bookmarked epub files. Very convenient when your cubical doesn't have enough space to add a bookshelf for all the references you would like to have available.

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Some good apps here

Some of them I've not used, but of the ones I have (about 3/4 of the list) they're all top notch, with one glaring exception. I did not get along well with Tomahawk.

It wasn't a flaw in the program or anything, it just didn't do things quite the way I wanted them to. It did come closer than any other media library manager I've tried unless you count Mixxx, which is not going to work well for most people but meets my needs perfectly. I blame the time I've spent DJing.

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US retail giant Target fails to get banks' MEGABREACH lawsuit slung out of court

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Re: Why are they on the internet?

I was under the impression that the Target breach was committed by someone with direct access to their sales terminals who managed to infect their corporate servers.

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And Target has already significantly raised their prices....

I've been shopping there for years as they're the only viable alternative to Wal-Mart* around here. I've not noticed any significant price increases. There have been some minor increases, but they've basically been in line with inflation.

*I refuse to shop at Wal-Mart. Don't get me started on the reasons or I'll be ranting all day.

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Hawking: RISE of the MACHINES could DESTROY HUMANITY

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Oy, not this again

A robot uprising makes for entertaining fiction, but let's get real for a moment here: What reason would an AI have to wipe out humanity? It's not like it would be competing with us for resources other than energy, and it seems likely that any super-intelligent AI would crack fusion pretty quickly. With fusion working there would be unlimited energy. So, basically, the only reason AI would have to attack humanity is if we were a threat to it. Any AI capable of wiping us out would be able to do the situational analysis to realize that attacking humanity is the quickest way to turn us into a threat to its own survival.

Frankly I think Orion's Arm is a much more likely AI scenario than Terminator.

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Gangnam Style BREAKS YouTube

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Assigning this to cumulative time wasted assumes the user watched the video in its entirety and did nothing else whilst viewing

You mean like saying "AHHH! NO! MERCY! I DIDN'T MEAN TO CLICK THIS LINK AGAIN!"?

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Sony Pictures struggles as staff details, salaries and films leaked

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In a bizarre statement an unnamed North Korean government official...

Is there any other type of statement from North Korean government officials?

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systemd row ends with Debian getting forked

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Re: What is systemd

How often do you have to reboot your system, A Non e-mouse? This box (Slackware-current on a nine year old HP ZV5105) hasn't been rebooted for close to a month.

And there's the difference between a server and a desktop. It's why I still run Debian on my servers but run Mint on my desktop and laptops: They have different needs.

My home desktop gets shut down every night before I go to bed and doesn't get turned back on until I eventually sit back down at it. Total it usually runs about 3-4 hours a day. My work computer usually gets shut down at 5 every Friday (and usually has in-progress projects open overnight the rest of the week) and gets booted back up while I'm getting coffee on Monday. There's no reason to leave a desktop on eating electricity all the time.

Contrast that to my server at home, which, aside from power outages and a span of about a week a couple months ago while I waited for a new motherboard to come in, hasn't been off since the last time I moved.

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Re: Off to a bad start

Presumably they know that Linux is not Unix then, and that it was never intended to be, and has non-Unix-like features ?

You're half right. Linux is not Unix and was never intended to be. What it is and was always intended to be is a kernel for GNU, which itself was always meant to be a libre clone of Unix.

Presumably they also know though, that init and systemd are in user space and not the kernel, so that would be the "GNU" bit of Debian GNU/Linux ? Did they ever read up on what the "N" in GNU stands for ?

Again, "not Unix" only because Unix was, at the time, as proprietary (maybe more so) as Windows is today. Remember the whole thing was the brainchild of Stallman, a man who's convinced that all the evils of the IT world stem from proprietary and closed software.

And I guess that they also know about SMF and launchd, which systemd is more or less a clone of, and the Unix systems on which they run ?

Black boxes. Pretty much the thing GNU and Linux were written to avoid because they cause problems that are hard to troubleshoot.

Or, maybe they don't know what they are talking about...

I find it more likely that you just don't understand where they're coming from.

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The Debian community has changed pretty significantly in the ten years that I've been a part of it (this wouldn't have even been a debate 10 years ago), but I can't imagine it's changed enough for the people opposed to making systemd part of a stable release a minority. It's not ready for prime time. It's as simple as that. It used to be that the Debian community as a whole would have understood that without even talking about it. It might have made it into the testing branch for a while before coming back out when the problems emerged, but more likely it wouldn't be out of sid, or maybe even experimental, yet. The change from hotplug to udev took quite some time, as it should. There's absolutely no reason for a change to systemd, if it's even necessary, to move any faster.

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Anti-download biz sued for 'abusive' robo-call demands for money

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Reminds me of back in the day when I got a letter, allegedly from SCO, about my "unlicensed use of their property" or some such rubbish. Frankly I'd find out what made them think I was file sharing then offer to let them set the court date and hang up on them. You can't win these cases with just an IP address and even if some brain dead court did award them a judgement with no other evidence it'd be far less than $20 per song.

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Bond villains lament as Wicked Lasers withdraw death ray

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Re: I like toys but...

'd much rather chance being zapped with a laser once on my way home than face the dozens of morons with their faulty headlights I pass every evening.

I agree that those xenon headlights are annoying and dangerous and should probably be illegal, but I think that the permanent damage to your eyes by just one high-powered laser would be far worse than the annoyance that overly bright headlights can cause.

That said I've not seen any news stories involving one of these lasers being used on drivers. That doesn't mean it hasn't happened, of course, but the pricing on them is high enough that your typical numbskull prankster is going to opt for a lower priced model for their shenanigans. I highly doubt that there's any real need to take them off the market, but I do understand the decision to do so.

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LIFE, JIM? Comet probot lander found 'ORGANICS' on far-off iceball

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Re: Panspermia

Since you obviously value intelligence and truth and given your obvious hostility towards religion I'd encourage you to look up just who came up with the original premise for the Big Bang Theory back in 1931. Here's a hint: Google Lemaitre. The answer just might make you reconsider your opinion on people of faith.

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Re: Panspermia

The evidence is pretty damn conclusive, however, that the answer is not "god".

I never mentioned 'god' Trevor. Nor was that where my thoughts were headed. It as more along the lines of 'turtles all the way down'.

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Re: Because then we're probably not alone

Because if it didn't start here, but "out there, somewhere" then there's a high probability life, as we know it, exists on any planet with a similar climate.

I prefer to think that there has to be life out there somewhere. I find it impossible to accept that in all of the hundreds of trillions of planets out there that only this one insignificant rock managed to spawn life. Even if Earth is very special in that the exact right 1 in a billion circumstances happened that still means there should be hundreds of planets out there with the same circumstance.

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Panspermia

Even if it turns out to be viable space microbes (which is exceedingly unlikely at this point) and panspermia claims the day the real question still remains unanswered. Rather than "we don't know" the answer to where life came from simply becomes "not Earth". Which is really not a terribly helpful answer as far as figuring out how life came to be in the first place.

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Astro-boffins start opening universe simulation data

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Remember, if you can simulate the universe then the odds that we're not living in a simulated universe are near nil. Ditto for the boffins running our simulation and the ones running theirs and so on. There could be thousands of layers of simulations above us before you get to the ones in the real world.

The simulation argument is fun, though I'm not sure why.

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After USA FREEDOM Act's failure, what's next for mass surveillance?

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Re: Sir

There ARE no obstacles to setting it up that way, and in fact it's pretty much the norm in the US Congress. Any bill that actually gets passed comes with riders tacked on by the other side. Sadly that's the only way to get anything done in Congress these days. Our political system really is that broken.

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Anonymous ‪hacks the Ku Klux Klan after Ferguson‬ threats

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Re: They were (so I've been told) basically a civil rights group.

They were every bit as antagonistic as the KKK

That would be the New Black Panthers. If Bill Cosby's rants on the subject are to be believed the originals have no respect for the group that usurped their name.

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Re: KKK= arseholes

I've never met an original Black Panther as far as I know. By the time I was old enough to care the originals had pretty much quit advertising, and from what I understand they weren't at all bad. They were (so I've been told) basically a civil rights group.

I have, however, had the misfortune of meeting both New Black Panthers* and Klansmen. I'd not willingly spend any time in the company of either. I have no tolerance for the rather potent strain of stupidity that is racism.

*The original Black Panthers and the New Black Panthers, for those who don't know, are completely unrelated organizations. The NBP just usurped the name.

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Every once in a while Anonymous picks a fight that I just can't help cheering them through. This is one of them.

KKK has been a disgrace to rational human beings of lighter complexions for 150 years.

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Is your kid ADDICTED to web porn? Twitter? Hint: Don't blame the internet

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Re: Hmm

prohibiting children from crossing the road by themselves would make more sense than banning them from accessing the Internet alone

Most parents DO prohibit children from crossing the road by themselves, at least until they're old enough to understand the danger. Unfortunately the age that most kids understand the danger of the internet is much higher than the age that they understand the danger of crossing the road.

A child who feels able to discuss most details of their online activities with an interested parent is likely to be far more safe.

Very true. And to be fair I don't plan of banning my kids outright from anything online except the obvious stuff like illegal sites and porn. In fact my daughter already has a FB account (in violation of FB's age policy - my wife's doing, but I didn't protest or ban her from it when I found out after the fact). I will insist on knowing who they're talking to when they get old enough for it to be an issue. Part of that will come from the computer being in the living room, and for fairness my computer is in the living room also.

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Re: Hmm

My kids are significantly younger than that, but I've got to say I agree with the no-laptops-upstairs rule. Banning social media is too much, but I think monitoring what your kids are doing online is just a simple, sane precaution.

I've seen way too many kids lured off into predators' hands because their parents didn't know what they were up to. It doesn't take too many times of having to talk to a classroom full of kids about why their classmate was killed by a pedo freak to get to that point. I've had or been very near to that unpleasant experience three times, plus another time that the daughter of a close friend got lucky and was rescued before the perv she'd hopped a train to see was finished with her.

Needless to say when I see someone saying the world "isn't any scarier than when we were kids" it makes me either laugh or reach for a clue-by-four, depending on my mood.

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Mozilla re-negotiates Google multi-million dollar sugar-daddy deal

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Re: What happened to all those millions from firefox os?

Looks like that whole html5/javascript stack is just not as appealing for mobile development has some would like to believe.

I find it VERY appealing and use it all the time, but the problem with the HTML5/JavaScript stack as a base for a mobile OS is that if you do it right your app doesn't care what OS it's running on. Why would I, as a developer using that stack, do the extra work tie myself down to a particular OS when I could do less work and have my apps work on all platforms, mobile or otherwise? Sure having it show up as a native app is nice, but it's ludicrously easy to make a web app look native for iOS or Android and not much harder for Windows 8.

Simply put, from a developers perspective FirefoxOS adds nothing. From a typical users perspective the question is "What's FirefoxOS?"

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Re: I wonder if Google would consider dropping the Mozilla deal?

Mozilla would probably get almost as much money from Microsoft for Bing to be the default search engine

Not likely. Anyone savvy enough to not use their system's default browser (Firefox is the default on very few systems - almost all of them some flavor of Linux, so those users are savvy too) is savvy enough to switch the default search engine. Most such people, at least the ones I know, don't use Bing.

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Yes! It's DRONE PORN. And we don't mean shiny pics of UAVs

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Rule 34

That is all.

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Hide your Macs, iPhones and iPads: WireLurker nasty 'heralds new era'

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Re: OK so let me get this straight.

NO intelligent user of ANY OS supposes it to be "magically" completely secure (the ones who do don't count).

Don't be ridiculous. Of course they count. And some of them (at least one whom I personally know) are quite intelligent.

Unix systems are not magically "secure" but they are demonstrably "more secure".

True enough.

Their use across the web does not constitute a "small target".

As far as user-targeting malware is concerned, yes it does. Servers are another matter, but servers are much harder to infect than desktops to begin with. For starters, they almost never hang out in sleazy websites like users do.

Let's say it yet, yet, yet again: There are currently no viruses proper - at all - for OSX (there will be, sometime, but this isn't one of them).

You do realize that even Apple stopped trying to push that particular line of bull 5 years ago, right? Yes, OSX viruses do exist and are in the wild and have been around since at least 2006. For a few examples, see

OSX_IWORM.A OSX_SLORDU.A OSX_MACKONTROL.A and OSX_MUSMINIM.A all of which are viruses that can be picked up via drive-by-downloads. And those are just a few examples. Yes, there is much less malware of all types around for OSX, but don't be one of those fools going around believing it doesn't exist.

OSX (and anything else *nix based) is harder to infect that Windows, but by no means is it so difficult as to not be worth it were there a greater number of potential targets. The diminutive market share of non-Windows PCs is very much one of the reasons we don't see more non-Windows malware.

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Not a bug, a feature

Normally that's meant as a joke, but in this case it really is a feature. Not only is it A feature, but it's THE feature as far as enterprises are concerned. Take this away and force them to install the apps they need on their corporate iWhatsits one at a time through the app store and you wouldn't be able to give the things to corporate users.

Sadly, as with many features designed for convenience, it's also an attack vector. Such problems shall always exist as long as non-geeks want to use technology.

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Pay-by-bonk 'glitch' means cards can go kaching-for-crims

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Re: And yet...

They actually claimed that it's 'perfectly secure'? This despite the known flaws in the system and the well known IT concept that perfect security doesn't exist?

This is what happens when you let marketing types talk about technology.

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Re: And yet...

Unfortunately they don't provide any other.

Time to look for another bank I'd say.

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Yet more proof pay-by-bonk is a bad idea. The first time I saw it I got on the nope train. I've seen no reason to regret that decision and plenty of evidence it was a prudent one since.

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Pop starlet Taylor Swift DUMPS Spotify: It’s not me, it’s you

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Re: People will definitely pay for music.

I think it's been pretty well proven that a lot of people WILL pay for music over pirating it provided they feel like they're being treated fairly. Personally I'm not a fan of Spotify specifically because the person doing all the work (the artist) isn't getting paid. That's the same reason I make sure all my royalties get paid when I DJ.

Here's the thing people: if musicians don't get paid they don't make music. I'm not saying we should go back to paying $20 to get one or two good songs plus a bunch of garbage we don't want, but the $1 per song model seems pretty fair to everyone. The consumer gets what they want for a good value and the artist gets paid. There's still the problem of middle-men and record execs sucking up most of the profits, but I think we're well on our way to that problem being solved. There are quite a few successful* indie artists out there now who've done away with the record execs and are only paying a (debatably fair) percentage to the music stores now.

*In this context, "successful" means that they've been able to quit their day jobs, not that they have private jets.

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Re: Erm....

I believe she is a popular, beat combo m'lud. Or to put it another way, she sings both kinds of music. Country, and Western.

She started out in country but has sort of migrated more towards pop over the course of her career. Neither are among my favorite kinds of music. Honestly I'd never heard of her until Kanye West's stunt at the Grammy Awards a few years back, but apparently she'd already become quite popular. I'm still not sure I've ever actually heard any of her music.

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