* Posts by Paul Hovnanian

1044 posts • joined 16 Mar 2008

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Microsoft: Blobs can be WORMs in the new, regs-compliant Azure

Paul Hovnanian
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But ...

... what about my right to be forgotten?

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Um, excuse me. Do you have clearance to patch that MRI scanner?

Paul Hovnanian
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Equipment Life Cycle

There needs to be some regulation of the vendor and/or customer maintenance and upgrade process in the certification of such equipment. Something akin to the way the FAA certifies both the aircraft design plus the operator, operator's maintenance process and manufacturer as a condition for the safe operation of a commercial airplane.

Manufacturers will have to commit to an ongoing maintenance and upgrade process, including security updates. Or their customers risk losing certification to use that equipment immediately. Customers and vendors will have to make purchase contracts and pricing decisions based upon this support. And manufacturers will be motivated to rely on maintainable hardware and software platforms as a strategy to keep support costs down.

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Unbreakable smart lock devastated to discover screwdrivers exist

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Where did you get that $20 padlock?

"Put a little tension on the hasp and tap either side of the body"

A problem with most 'snap-shut' type padlocks. The bolt is spring-loaded so as to allow the shackle to depress it when closing. Anything that can jostle the bolt back and forth (smacking it or a thin metal shim) can get it back open.

Better padlocks have the equivalent of deadbolts and key retention. You need the key to positively rotate the bolt into the locked position. And you can't take the key out unless the shackle is closed.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Re: tamper-proof screws aren't

"However the head profile is sort of sloped so there is no 'undo' edge."

Commonly used on bathroom stall partitions. It's a strange world we live in when our valuables are secured behind common Phillips head screws. But you just try to steal our toilet door .....

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EU-US Privacy Shield not up to snuff, data tap should be turned off – MEPs

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Perhaps it's a silly question. . .

"in return for EU companies being allowed to export data to those US companies"

How much of this data leakage is company-to-company and how much is it individual EU citizens signing up for a US service? You sign up on a US server, read the EULA (several dozen pages wherein the jurisdiction of US law and playing fast and loose with personal data are mentioned). Who made the decision to export your personal data in these cases?

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First A380 flown in anger to be broken up for parts

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Model is broken

Hub and spoke is broken because of monopolistic practices more than anything else. The computing analogy fails because my packets don't make a sweet deal with the local router to bump yours off the system (With the end of net neutrality, this may change.)

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Paul Hovnanian
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Re: This underlines one more thing

"New ETOPS rules, originating (who would have guessed) from the USA led to a lot of new competition that the A380 had not been designed to deal with."

ETOPS was on the drawing board since the 767. Increases in ETOPS range were inevitable, plugging the 'holes' that twin engine aircraft couldn't operate through. Airbus had plenty of time to see that coming. Likewise, engine capabilities have improved as time goes by. Fuel consumption and reliability numbers are things that a competent designer could easily extrapolate.

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US regains supercomputer crown from Chinese, for now

Paul Hovnanian
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Depertment of Energy

Needs this to figure out how to produce enough power to run it.

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WannaCry reverse-engineer Marcus Hutchins hit with fresh charges

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Who do you trust?

"If I was on the jury"

If you were in the jury pool, one side or the other would do their utmost to have you rejected. You appear to know something about technology and that would hinder some attorney's ability to submit garbage into evidence and have it accepted unquestioned.

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Cloudflare experiments with hidden Tor services

Paul Hovnanian
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Cloudflare

... is a rather large business with several large investors and numerous customers. It has quite a large attack surface for various government agencies to work on. So it's not inconceivable that they might choose to build back doors when requested rather than just go out of business.

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Four hydrogen + eight caesium clocks = one almost-proven Einstein theory

Paul Hovnanian
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Impact on Segal's law?

"A man with a watch knows what time it is. A man with two watches is never sure."

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Experts build AI joke machine that's about as funny as an Adam Sandler movie (that bad)

Paul Hovnanian
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A long way from Interstellar

TARS: [as Cooper repairs him] Settings. General settings. Security settings.

TARS: Honesty, new setting: ninety-five percent.

TARS: Confirmed. Additional settings.

Cooper: Humor, seventy-five percent.

TARS: Confirmed. Self destruct sequence in T minus 10, 9...

Cooper: Let's make that sixty percent.

TARS: Sixty percent, confirmed. Knock knock.

Cooper: You want fifty-five?

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Capture your late-night handbrake turns with this 'autonomous' car-chasing camera drone

Paul Hovnanian
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Cops

Will use these to tail people rather than engage in high speed chases.

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America's comms watchdog takes on the internet era's real criminals: Pirate pastors

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: FCC enforcement of radio spectrum usage

"Also regs for 'unintentional radiators'"

Like those cheap Chinese switching power supplies that (somehow) seem to pass Title 47, Part 15 testing and still manage to swamp the ham and commercial broadcast bands.

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Microsoft patches problematic OS to deal with SSD woes

Paul Hovnanian
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"The fat kid ...."

Sumo wrestling?

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The future of radio may well be digital, but it won't survive on DAB

Paul Hovnanian
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Whatever you do ...

... just don't get stuck with a license-encumbered system like HD radio (in the USA). Costs (to the broadcasters) are high and some have dropped their extended programming and gone back to analog FM.

With DAB, there are SDR receivers (some open source) available. And it wouldn't surprise me to see high end kit designed with upgradable firmware. So when you make a protocol upgrade, you just flash the receiver with a new app.

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I got 257 problems, and they're all open source: Report shines light on Wild West of software

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Last line says it best

"Open source, for all its benefits, does not remove the need for developers to know what they are actually using."

And proprietary platforms don't? Take an old PLC platform whose programming and interface components ran on XP with IE6. The bindings between the apps and OS were very tight. Just to make sure that you bast[censored]ds don't try to run it on WINE or anything like that. Now, a license for the current software version costs nearly* as much as tearing out the controllers and putting the ladder logic in a brand new system.

*Just enough less so that you'll choose the new license instead of scrapping and starting over.

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US Congress mulls expanding copyright yet again – to 144 years

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: For those who are unable to figure it out...

Nope. Copyrights (and inventions) are granted "To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts". There is no progress if you promise to pay an artist/inventor for the rest of eternity just to sit on their ass and live off past efforts.

Copyright terms give a creation some value based on the future stream of income from that work. Either the artist can collect that income stream or a publisher can buy the rights to it for a lump sum. That value or lump sum can easily be calculated by any Econ 101 student with a financial calculator app. Without copyright protection, that lump sum, or present value at the time of a work's creation would be zero. Because there would be no future income stream. On the other hand, on the day of creation, the present value of an income stream far in the future falls to near zero. So, as an artist, it would make no difference if the term were 14 years, 20 years, 75 years, etc.

Now here's the thing: On the day after creation, the artist is no longer an artist. They are now an investor with an asset in hand. They can keep it and it's future cash flow. Or sell it for a lump sum. But the "Progress of Science and the Useful Arts" has ceased. At least as far as that work is concerned. Want more money? Write another novel or draw another mouse.

The problem in Congress is that the studios are sitting on portfolios of works soon to reach a point where their income flow hits zero. And it benefits them to push that income horizon out some number of years so as to boost the portfolio's present value. But the Copyright Clause wasn't written to protect the assets of investors. Even if those investors happen to be the writer or his/her heirs who hung on to the publishing rights.

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LocationDumb: Phone tracker foul-up exposes world+dog to tracking

Paul Hovnanian
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Free for the taking?

Just watch LocationSmart claim that, in spite of their cheesy lock, burglars made off with the family silver and should be made to pay. You can't just pick up a pile of $100s that fell off an armored truck and think they are yours to spend.

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US prison telco accused of selling your phone's location to the cops

Paul Hovnanian
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"As a company that has access to confidential data, they are responsible for the privacy of everyone using the mobile telephone system."

Except that late in the last century, we (in the USA) lost ownership of our calling metadata. Thanks to one of those telecom bills, it belongs to the phone company. And IIRC, that was tested in court. And we (the public) lost.

From TFA: "This practice skirts wires carriers’ legal obligation to be the sole conduit by which the government conducts surveillance...".

But that is a restriction on the behavior of government, not the carriers or their customers (Securus, for example). Law enforcement might be obliged to serve warrants directly to AT&T or Verizon for _THEIR_ data. But there is nothing stopping these telecoms from selling _THEIR_ property to third parties. It's up to our government (police, department of corrections, etc.) to abide by the law and our Constitution (specifically the Fourth Amendment). But given their recent actions surrounding commercially available genealogical DNA data, That's a tempting cookie jar on an easy to reach shelf. Undoubtedly, law enforcement will argue that their recent solution to the Golden State Killer justifies unrestricted access. But the question remains as to whether police can use front companies to accumulate evidence against a person without a warrant.

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Date engraved onto net neutrality tombstone: June 11, 2018

Paul Hovnanian
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Senate Vote

One vote short of reinstating net neutrality rules. Maybe John McCain will switch sides. Just as a f[censored] you to Trump.

"I'm not dead. I don't want to go on the cart!"

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You love Systemd – you just don't know it yet, wink Red Hat bods

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Fudging the start-up and restoring eth0

"Why would Lennart's laptop need to handle 15 vlans?"

And this (or a version of it) is the root cause of most of the screwed-up improvements*. "I don't do XYZ. I don't understand XYZ. So I'm leaving it out of the new system."

*Wayland, I'm looking at you.

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Microsoft programming chief to devs: Tell us where Windows hurt you

Paul Hovnanian
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Tell us where Windows hurt you

Show us on the doll where Microsoft touched you.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Code Signing

"have Windows compare a file's certificate with a public key in the root of your website and display the web address to the end user"

But this will reveal the actual author of the application to the end user. And make it more difficult to treat your product and your company as tradable commodities suiting Microsoft's whims.

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Pentagon in uproar: 'China's lasers' make US pilots shake in Djibouti

Paul Hovnanian
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Retroreflectors

Along the sides of the cockpit windows. Maybe on some external surfaces if you can get them to stick on at cruising airspeeds.

Throw some of their laser back at them.

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US techies: We want to see Pentagon's defence of winner-takes-all cloud contract

Paul Hovnanian
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The cloud ...

... might be a money saver when we are at peace. But what will the DoD do when we go to war? And some aggressor generates an EMP over the top of Amazon's AWS data centers? Or Microsoft's Azure sites? Have they been hardened? Was that part of the Pentagon cloud contract?

I suspect that, unless someone at Fort Fumble has really laid an egg, the JEDI contract will have to include special mil spec hardware and facilities to keep wartime logistics, planning and communications functions up and running. So, not really much money saved if they do this right.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Boffin

Terminology

"fragmented and largely on-premise computing"

The security people used to call that "compartmentalization".

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Cambridge Analytica dismantled for good? Nope: It just changed its name to Emerdata

Paul Hovnanian
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Emerdata?

Not The Aristocrats?

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Ahem! Uber, Lyft etc: California Supremes just shook your gig economy with contractor ruling

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: What if ...

"you are not going to work on a Chinese system after that."

What makes you think the Pentagon was my first customer?

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Paul Hovnanian
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What if ...

... I'd rather be a contractor?

Obvious answer: Just make sure I have more than one customer. But that could hurt a good customer. What if they have a big push to get a job out and need my services full time for a number of months. And during that time, the gov't auditors stop by. It also puts me in the position that I may have to split my time between two competing customers. And they might not like that. 6 months on the Pentagon super secret radar contract. And then 6 months working on the Chinese system.

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Open Internet lovin' Comcast: Buy our TV service – or no faster broadband for you!

Paul Hovnanian
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How much ...

... for the TV+High speed Broadband bundle? But you keep the set-top box. Because I'm not really going to watch any of your crap.

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Amazon, LG Electronics turned my vape into an exploding bomb, says burned bloke in lawsuit

Paul Hovnanian
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Yo dawg!

We put shorts in your shorts.

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Planned European death ray may not need Brit boffinry brain-picking

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: It's The Sun wot won it

"Damned Germans"

Only if they re-occupy France.

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Pentagon sticks to its guns: Yep, we're going with a single cloud services provider

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Watch where the contract goes

"some seedy figure like Eric Prince is behind it"

More likely some outfit like Whitefish Energy Holdings. Who was just going to sub it all out to Tencent Holdings anyway.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Re: So, three years on ...

"can pay them lots of cash to make their product lines compatible with the DoD's preferred cloud"

Sorry, not interested. We have a lot of paying customers (including some NATO members, who aren't locked into an unsupported platform) and a limited number of developers. None of which we want to divert to a (very likely futile) task of getting anything stable on Azure. We aren't an 'anonymized' third party vendor who sells through Microsoft. Our reputation for technical competence is more important than a slightly larger pile of cash.

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Paul Hovnanian
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So, three years on ...

Our company has this excellent integrated battle management, tactical, strategic and logistics planning, inter-services coordination and communication, autonomous AI platform command and control applications suite. Just the thing you've been looking for. And a a very reasonable price.

Oh, sorry. It isn't supported on Azure.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Devil

One cloud

One Cloud to rule them all, One Cloud to find them,

One Cloud to bring them all and in the darkness bind them ...

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Windows Admin Center: Vulture gets claws on browser-based server admin

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Slowly...

"a more powerfuk"

Freud called. Your slip is showing.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Much cheapness

"I demanded they have an 'ology."

Most of our admins have an 'opathy. Some in more than one field.

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New Galaxy un-smartphone can’t go online because Samsung's thought of the children

Paul Hovnanian
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Voice and TXT only?

I have one. It's a $20 LG flip phone. Actually, it has more (camera, crappy web browser, etc.). But once you don't get a phone with apps, the need for that expensive display real estate goes away. And phones can get really cheap.

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Sysadmin’s worst client was … his mother! Until his sister called for help

Paul Hovnanian
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I must be blessed

The only problem I've been asked to fix on behalf of a non-tech savvy relative in recent memory was for my dad. He has a Mac and an HP printer which he (usually) keeps loaded with paper. But recently, his printer ran out in mid print job. After loading paper and clearing the on-screen pop-up, the printer would not resume working. A quick trip out revealed that he has placed the printer on a high shelf. So the top of the printer, with it's own flashing warning light and resume button are not visible.

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They're back! 'Feds only' encryption backdoors prepped in US by Dems

Paul Hovnanian
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Devil

Re: There is no God given right to digital security

"there is no God..."

That doesn't stop the three-letter agencies from playing one.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Re: Embarrassment of Advisors

"asked to disclose who the experts are that are telling the agency it is possible to create a secure Feds-only backdoor"

Let me guess: The Russians?

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Modern life is rubbish – so why not take a trip down memory lane with Windows File Manager?

Paul Hovnanian
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Boffin

Still have one

On Xfce. It's called Thunar. But I'm sure most of the Linux distros' desktops have something similar.

And if you are feeling brave, there's always 'find' at a command prompt.

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Russian regulator asks courts to disconnect Telegram

Paul Hovnanian
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Do svidaniya

To be accurate, that translates to "until we meet again" or something similar. So, not getting rid of Telegram completely?

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*Thunk* No worries, the UPS should spin up. Oh cool, it's in bypass mode

Paul Hovnanian
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"flood plain"

How about consolidating a companies' distributed data centers to one location. Built right on top of the Seattle earthquake fault.

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Law's changed, now cough up: Uncle Sam serves Microsoft fresh warrant for Irish emails

Paul Hovnanian
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Devil

Re: Next step?

"I suspect trying to apply it retroactively is enough to get it thrown out of most courts."

Ex post facto laws are in fact banned. But I suspect (and IANAL) that this would apply to data stored overseas going forward from the date of passage. No penalties for past refusal to comply with a warrant. But from here on out; hand it over.

Devil, because that's where the details lie.

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Doomed Chinese space lab Tiangong-1 crashes into watery Pacific grave

Paul Hovnanian
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Re: not bad, all things considered

'about as good an outcome as one could hope for, is it not?"

Depends on your point of view I suppose.

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It's baaack – WannaCry nasty soars through Boeing's computers

Paul Hovnanian
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@rmason

"While many "someones" will be fixing it in the background, the VP conference call must decide who to string up and hang out to dry."

Boeing is in the business of defying gravity.

Heads roll uphill.

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Paul Hovnanian
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Right about the same time. And just in time for the Saudi Crown Prince's visit to Boeing.

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