* Posts by Charles 9

11155 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Plan to kill net neutrality is the best thing/worst thing ever! EVER!!1

Charles 9
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Not only that, cities can have another handicap: age. I can name two HUGE cities that both have some difficulties wiring up: New York and London. Why? Both are OLD cities full of built-up (and built-DOWN) infrastructure. Anything you want to build in those cities has to get around all that existing stuff first.

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Charles 9
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Re: Ug

Just because you don't know them doesn't mean they don't hate you. And part of the art of voting is convincing people to agree with you. If your stand doesn't have the proverbial leg to stand on, it is you who needs to re-evaluate your stance, even if it IS the right one to you (which is relative; that's why you can never win an argument with an irrational person). If you're the one hen in a house full of foxes, perhaps the best option is to bail the hen house.

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Charles 9
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Re: Well...

Because Canada's Internet access still stinks for the most part, especially if you go away from the densest parts to the south. Just go there and listen to all the complaints about the likes of Rogers.

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Charles 9
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"So would any Americans who support this view explain why Europe with its 'excessive and burdomsome' regulation has better internet connections and more competition over providers than you?"

Simple: they're SMALLER. When it comes to networks, geography matters because of the infrastructure costs, and it's worth nothing that the only countries LARGER than the US have WORSE Internet access.

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Charles 9
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Re: Ug

But that just puts you in the UNHAPPY medium where EVERYONE ELSE hates (and out votes you).

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Sneaky 'fileless' malware flung at Israeli targets via booby-trapped Word docs

Charles 9
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Re: BIOS

There's been talks about infecting persistent EFI storage and USB controller chips (BadUSB, remember?). The idea is to bypass software and go straight to the hardware which is OS-agnostic.

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Charles 9
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Re: Well, we'll look for the house with no numbers.

It probably hides itself as a child process of something else running or finds a way to completely conceal itself so it doesn't appear at all.

What I'm wondering is if the next step is to use a memory-only malware to leapfrog past files and go straight to firmware so that it can make itself nuke-resistant if not nuke-proof.

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It's time for humanity to embrace SEX ROBOTS. For, uh, science, of course

Charles 9
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Re: Since we're "going there"...

It would be defeated by peer pressure and the old saying, "Ain't nothin' like the real thing, baby."

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Just delete the internet – pr0n-blocking legislation receives Royal Assent

Charles 9
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Headmaster

Re: No sex please, we're British.

That's TWO sentences.

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Charles 9
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Re: The Ruling Class

Ah, but China has shown a way to deal with VPNs. Just restrict ALL encrypted traffic that can't be decoded by the State. And if your system is able to parse other formats, you can also put a pinch on steganography. Control the points of ingress and egress, and you can prevent "conspirator" routers from helping as well.

Unlike with Prohibition, the borders CAN be patrolled pretty effectively if the State really got around to it.

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Charles 9
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Re: Police state

That wasn't a novel. It was a short story called, "The Pedestrian." The man was taking a walk outside when everyone else was home watching TV. An automated police car happened upon him, questioned him, and demanded he climb inside to be taken for psychiatric evaluation.

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Charles 9
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Re: There's another way to deal with Royalty

The problem with pitchforks and flaming torches is what if you're countered with the likes of tanks? Think of the Chinese solution to uprisings.

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Charles 9
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Re: Democracy for the majority

"Maybe instead, when they ask for prawns to be banned, the techies should just say "No." Don't try to reason, just stonewall."

But the problem with recalcitrance is that, eventually, people go, "Sod this!" and go around you. Even a coast-to-coast stonewall can be bypassed by sea. The risk of stonewalling is that they simply ignore you and you get no input in the final solution.

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Charles 9
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Hollywood has access to the cinemas, and cinemas are Hollywood's #1 revenue stream, which is why they get first cracks at movies. Plus they're torrent-resistant. The porn industry doesn't have something resembling that kind of revenue stream.

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Charles 9
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Re: Age verification

Most of them aren't considered valid for online shopping and will be rejected. The credit card companies know which are which and don't want to get caught up in money laundering investigations.

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Charles 9
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Re: Hardly surprising

"The worst form of government except for all the others."

Doesn't prevent democracy from being insufficient in and of itself, though.

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It's a question worth asking: Why is the FCC boss being such a jerk?

Charles 9
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"I would also suggest that removing net neutrality is against the very people Trump is supposed to be working for and that can't be argued by anyone. The establishment he is supposed to be working against will make great gains from being allowed to control the internet and charge extra money for preferential treatment."

Except you forget there are TWO establishments: the old guard and the new guard. And at this point, battle lines are drawn between them. The old guard represent the likes of Comcast, Time Warner, and Verizon: the old communications providers. On the other end you have the likes of Google, Netflix, and Amazon who work "over the top" of the communication providers. Since both sides are striving for the same thing (control over the flow of information), a "war" over it is inevitable, and the divide is pretty stark. The old guard don't want to be relegated to dumb pipes, and the new guard don't want to have to pay tolls on every junction.

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US Navy runs into snags with aircraft carrier's electric plane-slingshot

Charles 9
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Re: A rocket can't

I think that was before multistatic radar became en vogue. Multistatic radar is practically stealth-proof. The only way to beat that would be to develop an actual omni-directional transmissive electromagnetic cloak, and scientists right now don't have the foggiest idea where to begin on such a thing (or we'd have holographic video already, it can work on similar principles).

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TVs are now tablet computers without a touchscreen

Charles 9
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Re: Hubba! Hubba!

HEVC would be handy for low-bandwidth streams that can still show some quality, but high-def porn requires proper camera techniques because that level of detail can start creating Too Much Information problems (basically, do we really need to see the dirty at that level of detail?).

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Charles 9
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Re: Analogue TV

Interesting story that. It was around the same time that Multichannel TV Sound (MTS) was added to the NTSC standard, achieving the same feat in the States and other NTSC-using countries.

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Charles 9
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"I don't suppose the set manufacturers were happy about that. The new business model is much better."

They couldn't use today's model yesterday because televisions were much more expensive relatively speaking, even for mid-range products and were seen more as longer-term investments into keep up with the world, since back then there weren't that many channels to choose from and stuff like cable television was in its infancy. We're talking the days when "Cable-Ready Remote Control Color TV" was a selling point.

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Charles 9
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Re: All I want is the screen

"They exist, just look under 'Monitors' rather than 'TVs'."

Not quite. TVs stick to the standard resolutions while monitors tend to cater to users who need resolution more than anything. Beyond say 23 inches you go beyond 1080p resolution which tends to be overkill for most. Depending on the brand, monitors around the 30 inch range are 4K resolution. And I don't think they make monitors in home theater size. And let's not get started on the prices, as these tend to be classed as professional equipment.

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Charles 9
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Re: The road ends eventually.

"Similarly, when DVD first launched, PCs at the time needed an MPEG-2 add-on card as the required decoding wasn't possible in software-only due to the limits on CPUs grunt at the time."

And they weren't cheap, either. Anyone remember the RealMAGICs and Jazz VGA piggyback cards? I ended up getting one (used) because I learned firsthand that a 300MHz CPU (no cheapie for the late 90's) was a bit on the underpowered side. It took the P3 generation to make it doable in software, just as it took the P1 generation to be able to do MPEG-1 VideoCDs in software.

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Charles 9
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But the handshake can also BREAK or be REJECTED. Think of the early 4K screens after the HDMI spec was updated for protected 4K content.

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Charles 9
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My point. You STILL would miss, as most video decoding these days is done on the graphics unit rather than the central unit. Plus by raising your price, you allow the competition to undercut you, so you basically can't win.

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Charles 9
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Re: 'unused bit of the video signal'

Specifically, NTSC used 3.579545 MHz as the color subcarrier frequency. PAL used 4.433618 MHz. SECAM used a different system altogether that had its own tradeoffs (instead of both channels at once, it goes one at a time, improving horizontal color resolution at the cost of vertical resolution).

None of the systems were perfect, which is why derivise backronyms were made up ("Never Twice the Same Color", "Picture Always Lousy", and "Sans Experience Contre les AMericans"/"System Essentially Contrary to American Method")

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Charles 9
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Re: All I want is the screen

"So get cracking on modular frames."

You forget about Planned Obsolescence. Unless you can compel them by law, no manufacturer will ever want to support the screens for more than the bare minimum. Captive markets, after all.

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Charles 9
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Re: Hardware Acceleration Required

It depends on the chip, I think. If the 10-bit bitstream is not that different from an 8-bit one, the decoder can still decode it, then pare down the 10-bit results into 8-bit ones. But this isn't a question with a universal answer.

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Charles 9
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Until they update the HDMI spec, that is...

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Charles 9
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Re: Smart

But terrible media centers. You usually have to fiddle with them to find the videos you want, and their codec support can be hit or miss. I speak from experience. It's not like they support something like Kodi where everything's well-organized.

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Charles 9
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Re: Hardware Acceleration Required

Yes you can. You just can't show the full gamut. It's like trying to watch a 4K video on a 1080p screen. You can do it, just not at its full quality.

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Charles 9
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Ah, but which VERSION of HDMI? Ask the early 4K TV adopters what they thought when they learned the HDMI spec was updated for 4K HDCP support and their TVs don't support it. Ugh...

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Charles 9
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Probably not. Need additional oomph in the chips to be able to handle HEVC (that's the tradeoff; tighter encoding results in higher demands at the other end). Basically, if your TV was built before HEVC was formalized, don't count on it to be able to handle it reliably if at all. It's a hard problem of technology: they can only build for what they can see, and trying to future proof is like trying to predict the weather: fair chance of missing.

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Charles 9
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The road ends eventually.

Before you talk about upgrade paths, consider the previous generation of Smart TVs that had their own OS's and app stores. You would think these would also allow for upgrade paths. The thing is, like most other things, they eventually get abandoned. You can't expect Android to be supported to eternity, and indeed Google seems intent on an eventual path away from it with Andromeda. What happens when the app you need to watch your shows is dead-ended? Even worse, even if the app is updated, will your television carry the brute force needed to handle newer, tighter codecs? Take my TV. It'll never have the oomph to do HEVC. At the time it was made, AVC was state of the art. HEVC wasn't even a concept at the time. As a New Yorker would say, "Fugedaboudit!"

Just like with computers, it's a decision between "wait until something better comes along" and "pick your spot and take the plunge". It pretty much comes with the technology territory and is for the moment unavoidable.

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European Court of Justice lays down the law on Kodipocalypse

Charles 9
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Re: Do you know what would deter pirates?

"Copyright infringement will always exist, but it can be greatly reduced if the content providers adapt."

You forget. Once their media's cut loose, they lose their repeat business which they need to continue existing. Plus these things cost money and they need to recoup it. Have you considered that your model may not be enough to get it back? Unless you can provide actual hard numbers to support this? And don't use the music industry as a basis since their overheads are much lower being they don't have to cater to eyes.

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Charles 9
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Re: Question about these pirate Kodi sticks

I think it's mainly the latter. Content management systems are getting hardened enough for the former to not be too feasible these days barring a hole.

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Charles 9
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Re: mmmmmmmmmm...

"One assumes, further, that it may become illegal to pass any directions as to where you can find the instructions on how to install such software."

Directly, probably, but that kind of information is also easier to pass along INdirectly.

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A switch with just 49 ns latency? What strange magic is this?

Charles 9
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Re: The future...

"HFT shows that the financial system is broken and working against the needs of Society. If the financial system was an audio amplifier, then HFT would be ultrasonic ringing, and the designer would insert a low-pass filter to improve the amplifier's performance. Instead, the HFT traders throw money at increasing the problem, because it makes them more money."

Your analogy is broken here because the HFT people WANT the ultrasonic ringing, as it gives them a money edge. That's why they're willing to throw money at it, because they get MORE money in return. It goes to basic human behavior, so you likely can't fix something like this without fixing the human being.

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Charles 9
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Re: The future...

But that was the FIRST thing they did. All the prime real estate's assumed to already be taken, including space WITHIN the exchange if at all possible. Now, due to the crazy demand, prime real estate commands prices too high for RoI to be worth it anymore. Which means time for Plan B: quicker turnaround at junction points because everything else is basically hampered by the speed of light in medium and the speed of electricity.

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Don't stop me! Why Microsoft's inevitable browser irrelevance isn't

Charles 9
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"I use Chrome because Google has accomplished for the consumer what Microsoft does for the corporate user.

They built a platform that allows you to roam."

At the price of them being able to see what you're doing. Is this kind of ability worth having Big Brother looking over your shoulder most of the time?

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Doctor Who-inspired proxy transmogrifies politically sensitive web to avoid gov censorship

Charles 9
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Re: Because...

Thing is, what if the state is running an SSL proxy, meaning the ONLY keys the end-user have belong to the state, a la a corporate secure proxy?

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Lyrebird steals your voice to make you say things you didn't – and we hate this future

Charles 9
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Re: "Our technology questions the validity of such evidence"

And what's so special about it that no computer can replicate it? Sounds to me like they've found the closest thing yet to the Lens.

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systemd-free Devuan Linux hits version 1.0.0

Charles 9
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Re: They missed a trick

"The reality is the binary logs are there so they can be journaled, indexed, tamper resistent, searchable and all the rest. Things that administrators want or should want. It doesn't even stop you extracting the journal as text. It does allow you to tell if somebody has deleted lines from your journal. It does allow you to efficiently search between two date ranges on a particular event."

EVERYTHING you describe can be done with an all-text journal.

The kernel log can be timestamp and is frequently already timestamped.

If you really need indexing, you can generate an external file. I know video editors that use this technique for interframe videos.

You don't need a binary format to create a blockchain as they tend to be format-agnostic.

And logs are already searchable. Since most log searches are textual in nature, a simple linear search remains the most practical. A text log is easier to perform a textual linear search.

Now tell me how you extract a text journal from a crashed drive when it was housing your only systemd-based system? As Spike Milligan put it, it's like trying to open a box with the crowbar you will find inside.

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Charles 9
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Re: They missed a trick

Anything that involves a translation means things can get LOST in translation, especially if a system is heavily used. START with an ASCII log, THEN work from there on an AUXILIARY basis. Until you can prove yourself able to dig through a mangled journal on a crashed drive using a raw sector editor (because the system you're using for the post-mortem may not even be a Linux machine, so forget about one that groks a binary log to say nothing of an extended filesystem), don't even get started.

Why MUST the log be binary for forward-secure sealing? Why not encode a TEXT log and append the Hex-encoded hash to the log? You get your signature AND maintain an ASCII log that can still be read in the event of a disaster. It's nothing more than a blockchain, and you don't need to use binary formats to create a blockchain.

As for enclosing those utilities, remember the old Microsoft mantra? The three E's? Embrace, Extend, and Extinguish. This seems like a blatant attempt to usurp baseline utilities and take over their control so that no one else can keep up? Look at what happened to udev, which was working pretty well all by itself. Between it and the existing init systems, you'd be well on your way to solving most of the existing problems with dynamic hardware, containerization, and so on while still keeping things distinct.

And what about Bug #5644? In any other circles, this would be a Drop Everything because it breaks a cardinal rule of Linux (Don't allow easy tampering of the root). Here it's a WONTFIX. And not because it's a non-issue, because no real reason is given for ignoring the issue. Where I come from, we call that "taking the ball out of spite" and consider this a sign the project is Not Ready for Prime Time and the head to be blackballed.

Frankly, if they could demonstrate one clear and present need that systemd AND ONLY systemd solves by its particular methodology, we'd probably pay at least some attention to it. But until then...

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Charles 9
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Re: Why not switch to FreeBSD?

Hardware support stinks, especially for end users.

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Charles 9
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Re: They missed a trick

Really? Then perhaps you can list and rebut all the objections to it, including boring things like ntp and udev best kept separate, not using an ASCII log that can be read easily even if you're forced to read a crashed drive by raw sectors, and especially the attitude coming from up top of "my way or the highway," and no, Linus is better than Pottering in this regard. Linus objects to stupid stuff. Pottering objects to stuff that isn't his.

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Charles 9
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Re: geez, the ignorance about systemd here is astounding

"Please make the effort to do so, if they are indeed misunderstandings. There are some angry comments here about systemd, but I'd be very interested in your rebuttal of the more rational comments from those of us who have what we believe are sound technical objections to systemd's design."

I think what they're saying is that you can't fix Stupid. And you can't stop people ignoring things they WANT to ignore.

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Charles 9
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Re: They missed a trick

You forget. The Amish are technophobes. They're very much against using electricity; computers are essentially taboo to them.

What you probably intend to coin is perhaps "Luddix" on the belief that technology isn't the answer to everything.

PS. Back to the discussion. If we do have to go back to square one, how DO we better handle dynamic hardware configurations where even basic things like displays can come and go on a moment's notice?

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Script kiddies pwn 1000s of Windows boxes using leaked NSA hack tools

Charles 9
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"You can be versatile without a truckload of tools. It's knowing what to use and how to use it properly that matters, NOT how many different spanners of the same size you can call on."

And having a truckload of tools can make you MORE versatile. Assortment for assortment's sake may not mean much, but an assortment you ACTUALLY USE regularly is a whole other thing. You can't employ something you don't have, and it's hard to reach down to a 6-inch recessed nut without an extension rod, for which there are few acceptable substitutes. Similarly with things like Torx-head screws. Plenty of things in the world where one size can't fit all.

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Charles 9
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"I doubt some magical spell patent would bother me."

But you'd also running the significant risk of being found out and having another excuse for the plods to come after you.

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