* Posts by Xenobyte

44 posts • joined 17 Feb 2010

Easter is approaching – and British pr0n watchers still don't know how long before age-gates come into force

Xenobyte
WTF?

Why?

There are so many studies that makes it clear that watching porn has no negative effects on anyone regardless of age.

But of course this is a political matter and then science must yield to political bias.

King's College London internal memo cops to account 'compromise' as uni resets passwords

Xenobyte

Just block it

Why not simply block connections from China?

This is pretty trivial and shouldn't affect people using VPN to access their accounts.

Want to hang out with criminals but can't be bothered to download Tor? Try Facebook

Xenobyte
FAIL

Facebook moderation is random at best

When it comes to moderation of so-called 'hate speech' their policy is all over the place. I see posts with "KILL ALL MUSLIMS!!!" that aren't removed at least for days and then if I post "Muslims are behind most of the terrorist attacks in the world today. Here's the statistics <link to statistics>" it gets removed and my account blocked - for being 'hate speech'.

Oh, and when you get penalized by Facebook you are referred to the rules you've broken and encouraged to read and understand them. But the 'hate speech' section is only a few paragraphs and they're not very clear. I see no mention of uncomfortable statistics or similar.

How do you sing 'We're jamming and we hope you like jamming, too' in Russian? Kremlin's sat-nav spoofing revealed

Xenobyte

The 'smearing' of location the US used on GPS in the beginning was more or less the same thing except it was encoded in the system itself. It was 'defeated' by installing antennas in known locations and broadcast the real time offset they saw, which then could be used to calculate the correct GSP position despite the smear. This rendered the smearing useless and as it also complicated all military devices that was able to de-smear the location, they decided to turn it off.

The same de-smearing can be used against the Russian jamming if it causes incorrect positioning. If it drowns out the proper GPS signals... that's a different story.

Apple's new 'spaceship' HQ brings the pane for unobservant workers

Xenobyte
Happy

Glass maze

Uo until about a decade ago the very old danish amusement park "Dyrehavsbakken" had glass maze named "Vinduet" (The Window). One side facing the street was entirely glass and all interior walls in the maze was glass. It was a lot of fun just watching from the outside when people walked into a glass wall, turned and walked into another while trying to backtrack their steps. You could win prices if you got through faster than a certain time, thus increasing the chance of hitting the glass walls even harder...

He's cheesed it! French flick pirate on the lam to swerve €80m fine, two-year stretch in the clink

Xenobyte
FAIL

Re: This:

You can only 'steal' revenues if you would have paid full price for something if it wasn't available for free. I seriously doubt this would happen in many of the piracy cases. Most of the pirates would have ignored the offering if it wasn't free, thus no real loss of revenues.

Australia joins the 'decrypt it or we'll legislate' club

Xenobyte
Holmes

Here's a novel idea - do police work the old-fashioned way

Instead of expecting shortcuts through technology, do the work the classic way.

After all, it's not bits stealing from bits or killing bits, it's people using technology to steal etc. from other people. Watch the people (with proper warrants of course) and detect the crime there in the real world, just like in the old days. You would be surprised how much people actually talk about the stuff they did online.

Who's using 2FA? Sweet FA. Less than 10% of Gmail users enable two-factor authentication

Xenobyte

Re: I don't even use plastic - I pay cash

Cash?

It's being phased out now already in some countries... To cut down on black money. If you have to use electronic payments to buy pot, moonshine, Russian black market cigarettes etc. the banks will know and as they send their data to the tax agencies (to check for money laundering and terror financing), you (the seller) will get nailed at least for tax evasion and probably also for undocumented income by the police... That's the idea anyway.

You've seen things people wouldn't believe – so tell us your programming horrors

Xenobyte

Welcome to the year 19100

My worst piece of code was found in a support system written in perl. This was just around 1999-2000 and the moron that wrote it 'converted' the year as returned from the time call into a fully qualified year by doing $fullyear = "19".$year instead of $fullyear = 1900+$year. His code works fine until the year 2000. The year as returned is the number of years since 1900, not the last two digits of the full year... The result was that the program thought that we were in the year 19100 and the auto-expire function felt that everything was ancient and deleted it all... We thankfully had backups...

Macroviruses are BACK and are the future of malware, says Microsoft

Xenobyte

People are gullible - and stupid

I once saw a test where office people were sent an email with a paragraph about security and not clicking stuff sent to them in an email, which also contained a big button saying "DO NOT CLICK ME". More than 70% clicked that button anyway... (which triggered an annoying noise)

REVEALED: Google's proposed indie music-killing contract terms

Xenobyte
Stop

Windowing must go

Whatever it's called, that window of pre-release exclusivity for radio stations and similar, must go. It is one of the primary causes of piracy.

Before the Internet, it went like this: You turn on the radio and hear a new awesome song. You note the band and the title and go to your local record store and ask for it. No, it's not out yet. You go home and next day the song is playing again. Now you want it even more and go to the record store again. Nope, still not out. The you hear it again on the radio and want it still more. Again to the record store. Nope, not yet. This repeats until suddenly the record store has it and you buy it and run home to enjoy it.

Now it goes like this: You turn on your radio and hear a new awesome song. You note the band and the title and log on to your favorite search engine. A quick search later you find several places where you can preorder the song but realize it won't be out for a month. Right next to these offers you see dozens of links to places where you can simply click to download right now. No charge. You click on one and have the song a few minutes later. It's illegal but you don't care. They wouldn't sell it to you so it's their fault you had to steal it. Now you can listen to it whenever you want. A month later when everybody can buy the song legally, nobody does because they already have the song and they've listened to it so much they really don't care about it anymore.

Kim Dotcom victim of 'largest data MASSACRE in history'

Xenobyte
Thumb Down

Nonsense charges!

As far as I know MU did not commit any copyright infringement themselves.

It may be that others used the MU service for such things (we know some did) but MU is of course not responsible for what people use their storage for, just like the countless self-storage providers all over the world isn't responsible for what people put in their storage lockers - despite stolen goods being common, and even drug labs have been seen.

Dunno why they want to pin everything on Kim Dotcom and MU... Maybe it's just easy and convenient targets?

Spamhaus-style DDoS attacks: All the hackers are doing it

Xenobyte
Alert

Correction and a fix

First of all, we're not talking zone transfers (AXFR) here. They can only come from authoritative nameservers and this functionality should be locked down to only be available from a few local IPs.

The technique here is to send a 'regular' request for some large zone to a cache nameserver, only with the source IP spoofed so the reply goes to that IP, not to the one really doing the asking. There are lists of large zones floating around the net, as well as lists of open cache nameservers.

The victim will see a massive flood of DNS replies, all originating from more or less random cache nameservers, all with a source port of 53 tcp or udp.

Now, most organizations have their 'own' cache nameservers and thus should never allow DNS-traffic from the outside from other IPs than those (if they're outside the local network) or any inbound DNS-traffic unless part of an already established connection or part of establishing one, which could be futher limited to those with a source IP of a local cache nameserver (used for recursive lookups).

Sure, the attack can saturate the uplink pipe completely, rendering all local firewalling futile, but then the rules are just applied one step up the pipeline and you're back in business. If not, go one more step.

Anonymous 'plonks' names, addresses of far-right EDL types on web

Xenobyte
IT Angle

thugs

"...by two thugs who had apparently converted to Islam."

So... Did they convert *because* they were thugs or did they become thugs from their exposure to Islam?

Either way, it seems that the EDL has valid grounds to link Islam with this bestial and utter evil act.

Sure, some Islamic clerics have condemned the attack while a lot others are silent or (worse) 'understands' the motivations of the thugs and that makes the EDL even more relevant. Sure they are thugs themselves but they bring up some valid points about Islam and especially those that more or less accept or condone any form of violence in the name of Islam. The Islamists are loud and easy to spot (and watch), but all those just behind are just as bad. They teach their children that violence may be okay, that any fight by Muslims against other faiths are good fights etc. and that is extremely scary.

Climate scientists link global warming to extreme weather

Xenobyte

Cooling!

The past four winters here in Europe and North America have been among the coldest on records.. Not much global warming here... Cooling is more like it.

Xenobyte

Re: This is the point.

"What melted the previous ice age? There were hardly any humans and zero technology"

Farting cows? - A lot of farting cows?

Big labels try for ISP blocking on 3 more 'pirate' sites

Xenobyte
Thumb Down

Futile

Blocking the website of TPB does nothing. They run no trackers nor do they host anything. It's just a portal and search engine.

There are already dozens of other sites mirroring the TPB portal and search engine and you can't win the arms race of blocking them all. Once you have the magnet link of the torrent you seek, only massive national firewalling will block you from downloading the data it refers to.

Pirate Bay founder arrested in Cambodia

Xenobyte
Pirate

Legal farce

The Pirate Bay started as a political statement from The Pirate Party and it remains so. It never hosted anything illegal, nor did it produce anything illegal. It was and still is merely a politically motivated file sharing search engine and portal.

Pressure from US rights holders (MPAA/RIAA) resulted in an illegal raid (based on an illegally issued search warrant which also failed to name the law violated in the case (because there was none), and which was abused to seize hundreds of servers completely unrelated to TPB) and a law that retroactively made TPB illegal while restricting free speech and introducing censorship.

Sweden was obviously turning into a undemocratic police state, which is why Julian Assange is so afraid to be extradited there. No wonder the founders fled to the other end of the world.

Naked Scarlett Johansson pic snatch 'is worth 6 years' porridge'

Xenobyte
Alert

Re: This kind of stuff should be punished severly..

You are so wrong!

Sure it is an invasion of privacy, but the fact that he found nude pics are entirely their own fault, both Scarlett Johansson and Renée Olstead.

It boggles my mind that celebs snap nude pics or make sex videos of themselves and send them to surprisingly often completely unreliable boyfriends, who often end up selling them after a breakup. Sure, in this case the pics were 'liberated' using 'hacking' but there would be nothing to share if the celebs just stopped being stupid and thus stopped making them.

The rule of thumb here is that you should never write anything or pose for pictures/video that you don't want to end up 'out there'... because once out there, there's the Streisand-effect...

One court order could gag EVERY ISP in Denmark

Xenobyte
Thumb Down

Blocking sites is against the Danish Constitution!

Section 77 of the Danish Constitution explicitly bans the introduction of any kind of censorship but yet the courts keep on blocking more and more sites...

Blocking free access to otherwise public information is universally recognized as censorship.

HTC handsets hit by grip of death

Xenobyte
Happy

Really?

I've had my One X since it came on the market and aside from 3-4 crashes (reboot, followed by an offer to send crash info to HTC) it has worked flawlessly. No Wifi-issues, no GSM/UMTS issues, no battery issues. Oh, and silent means silent - no shutter sound from the camera in silent mode - as it should be.

Quite possibly the best phone I've ever owned!

Megaupload case near collapse: report

Xenobyte
FAIL

Re: The New Justice[tm]

Make Easy? - MegaUpload didn't make anything. Rapidshare had already been there for half a decade when Dotcom launched his service. The difference being in the details and the pricing. Before that there was (and stil is) bittorrent, and before that various applications in the P2P world, and before that was Napster, the first really huge sharing system. And of course before that for decades was the private ftp server network, which is still used by "The Scene" today.

Now, computer games was always a target for hacking. I personally had countless hundreds of floppys with hacked C64 games in my youth. I also had hundreds of cassette tapes with music recorded from the radio or from records owned by my friends. No, sharing copyrighted stuff is not new and was certainly not neither invented nor made more rampant by Dotcom and MegaUpload. It was just a new twist on a many decades old gambit.

Now, instead of trying to intimidate people into not doing what they've always been doing (a futile effort at best), they need to figure out how to live with it. First of all they need to understand WHY people download illegally. Unfortunately while the reasons are well-documented by countless studies, the copyright holders completely ignore this and apparently assume that people do it exclusively because they're evil and because they are freeloaders.

The studies reveal that only about 10% are freeloaders, i.e. people never willing to pay no matter what the price. Another 10% are people willing to pay a reasonable price but find the current prices too high. The rest are actually people willing to pay the full asking price if they were able to do so, but geo-discrimination and format blackouts prevents them. This is the big one and strangely enough it's also the one most easy to change. Yes, the copyright holders could cut piracy with 80% quite easily by simply changing their policy.

Want examples? - A new movie opens in the US (and Canada) but not in Europe for weeks/months. People in Europe have the choice of waiting or piracy. And a US consumer that rather want to watch the movie at home? - Nope, go to a cinema or wait - or grab it from the pirates. The solution is simple: Simply release the movies and the music globally on all formats simultaneously and everybody is able to enjoy it the way he or she prefers and to do it with a clean conscience as they've paid for the privilege.

Medieval warming was global – new science contradicts IPCC

Xenobyte
Alert

So... what does it mean?

It's actually quite simple:

Global warming has happened before without human influence, both before 'civilization' (end of the ice ages) and during (the new data). This means that there exists a reason (or several reasons) for this to occur that isn't human-related.

It does not mean that human activity cannot cause global warming.

It does mean that if we believe we currently observe signs of global warming, there's at least one more still unknown cause for it. It may be irrelevant today or it may be entirely false if the both the signs of past global warming as well as the current signs are false positives and the global climate didn't change - not then, not now.

Some say that it doesn't hurt to be on the safe side and that we shouldn't take any risks when it comes to the global climate. That's all fine and good and if these people chose to live like that, fine. It's their life and they can live it how they chose.

The problems come when they turn it into a religion (more like a cult) and enforce their beliefs on others, especially policy-makers. This is wrong on several levels, both the cult aspects (brainwashing, name calling, peer pressure etc.) and the fact that policy is based on more or less guesswork. Add to that, the 'fixes' include massive expenditures, a significant drop in the options for transport and energy, and our way of life. And it's still based on guesswork. It's actually a lot like the Holy Inquisition: Convert and pay taxes to The Church - or else!

Yes, it is possible that humans cause global warming. We're just far from being able to justify that, let alone prove it. Even proof of the fact that global warming is happening doesn't change anything because we simply don't know why. There is a unknown cause out there, and as long as we don't know what and understand its part in the big picture, we cannot say that "humans caused everything". The unknown cause may explain everything on it's own, be partially to blame or have no influence at all today. We just don't know.

German court: Rapidshare must HUNT for dodgy pirate links

Xenobyte
FAIL

Really?

"...and search for others "selectively in link resources" online and prevent them be made publicly available on its site..."

The judge actually demanded that Rapidshare must employ people to sit and join as many file sharing forums as possible, just to sit and wait for links to be published relating to Rapidshare, and block/delete them on Rapidshare's systems?

This is insanity!

Oh, and fingerprinting uploads won't work either. Most uploads are split archives and neither inside or outside are titles etc. used, so matching things on filenames are out.

I've already seen the first archives with a random junk file inside that will make both checksum, file listing and size vary, despite basically the same content. I think it's one (or more) of the "link safe" systems that does this... You know the systems that automatically re-uploads a file if it gets deleted. The uploader publishes the link to the link safe system that when clicked bounces you to the most current hosting link, usually after having shown you a few ads.

Dotcom bail survives appeal, extradition hearing in August

Xenobyte

He needs to run!

Well, in more ways than one, but...

Seriously, the best that could happen would be if he ran and turned up somewhere completely out of reach of the US authorities, from where he could wage a full-on war against the US and the media industry, mocking them and - of course - setting up a new MegaUpload, using the same name and everything. Perhaps - if he has hidden away enough money - he could buy Sealand (like The Pirate Bay considered) or something similar and set up his own nation and work from there?

Stolen NASA laptop had Space Station control codes

Xenobyte

Feet and meters, bits and bytes...

The obvious reason they haven't implemented encryption is the issue with bits and bytes... not unlike the issue with feet and meters... after all ROCKET SCIENTISTS made that mistake...

Epic net outage in Africa as FOUR undersea cables chopped

Xenobyte

Re: Three weeks without internet?

Depends on which type of company I guess... A hosting company like the one I'm working for would be rather paralyzed without Internet. Same thing with a newspaper or similar.

But your run-of-the-mill office might experience a change in pace... Old previously thought long extinct ways of wasting time would be making a huge comeback...

Bomb threat lobbed at Finnish anti-piracy squad

Xenobyte
Thumb Down

Stupid

The bomb threat is plain stupid... it just hurts the case.

Defacing websites or just DDoS'ing them isn't all that constructive either, but does serve the purpose of expressing anger at both the media organizations and the courts for allowing this censorship.

Because that's what this is really about: Censorship.

Instead of getting off their butts and provide the products their customers want when they want them - at affordable prices of course - they chose to persecute their customers and prosecute their alternative ways of getting what they want.

Now, I haven't used TPB in a long time. Doubt many has except for the most rank beginners. Most of the file sharing world has moved on (or back) from P2P to direct download, this time to file hosting providers like rapidshare, megaupload, wupload, fileserve, filesonic, hotfile and similar. In other words - this move is censorship that will have little or no effect on the problem at hand.

Facebook security hole exposes Zuckerberg's privates

Xenobyte
Trollface

Yes - or rather it's the new 4chan...

What should a sci-fi spaceship REALLY look like?

Xenobyte

Adapt its shape... Something like "Max" from Disney's "Flight of The Navigator"? - Whenever it had to go really fast it altered its shape to become much more streamlined.

Xenobyte

As far as I know we've never seen the real TARDIS from the outside. We've only seen the part it has sticking into our dimension - which happens to look like a police call box...

US stealth bombers finally get nuke-nobbling super bomb

Xenobyte

Actually it is fairly simple to significantly amplify the effect of such weapons - just make them dirty weapons. Make the heavy outer shell from an allow with semi-depleted uranium or pack in some highly radioactive nuclear waste and presto! - After detonation the entire area is deadly radioactive and the Iranians cannot prove that is wasn't their own facility that leaked radiation.

Are IP addresses personal data?

Xenobyte
Thumb Down

Not personal

I agree with Alan - Not only does an IP only define a location, not a user, but a (public) IP can be and often is, shared among multiple devices, and thus possibly between multiple persons.

In addition, an IP can be shared with unknown devices and thus with unknown persons. Most well known is 'wardriving' where unsecured wifi access is (ab)used, either as a free ride or in order to hide your true identity, but other forms exists.

There are many forms of malware that hijacks a machine in order to control it (as a bot or zombie), usually to send spam or participate in DDoS attacks, but they are also often used as a base for further intrusions or hacking, and for downloading illegal stuff, including child pornography.

Finally and much more rare are cabled abuse. I've seen stories about a guy that simply ran a network cable to his neighbors router/switch, and even one where the 'freeloader' hid a rogue wireless access point at the victims house so no cable would give away who used it.

So no, there's no way an IP in any way, shape or form identifies a single person with any certainty and thus it cannot be personal data.

Mozilla to Firefox users: Ditch crashtastic McAfee plugin

Xenobyte
FAIL

Not fixed

I just had to restart my FF 7.0.1. - I have about 60 tabs divided into several tab groups and in less than 48 hours memory use increased from 350MB (startup - all tabs loaded) to 1.45GB. There are no reloading pages, no ads (use AdBlock and NoScript) and it still eats memory like children eat candy.

This is slightly WORSE than FF 6.0.3 ... :(

Irishman's coke-packed abdomen poses for police

Xenobyte

Instead of wasting money on trials and similar, just issue one very hard punch to the stomach and let nature takes its course. I mean, the bozo put the drugs in there himself so if they cause him to die, it's his own fault, and - well good riddance!

London rioters should 'loose all benefits'

Xenobyte

Crime and punishment

We don't need the death penalty or similar here, just use the laws properly.

The rioters and looters must be identified, arrested and convicted. They need to serve jail time for the crimes, which include vandalism, arson, attacks on the police and murder where relevant. Then they need to pay restitution to the victims and for the damages.

I have no problem sentencing some kid to pay their share of the damages, even if the bill for each runs into the millions. They did the damage and now it's time to pay. Until they've paid in full they obviously should not get any social benefits (the amount or value goes towards the debt). So it's "get a job or starve" for them.

Hackers pwn PBS in revenge for WikiLeaks doco

Xenobyte
Mushroom

Escalation

Reading Bill's article it is clear that what we're seeing is the legendary spiral-of-death, the never-ending series of strikes and counter strikes. It will only stop when one party surrenders or is taken out in some way. I expect that Twitter will be penalized in some way for collaborating with the UK-issued warrants, which they clearly should have contested all the way to the supreme court.

Feds indict poker sites, seize domains

Xenobyte
FAIL

Stupid

Let me get this straight... It is legal for a US citizen to go to an indian reservation, Las Vegas or similar and gamble as much as he/she likes, but it is illegal to log on to an online casino and do the same thing?

Why?

The only thing that makes sense is that lawgivers don't make enough money from the online version and thus to protect their interests got it banned.

It is clearly not about gambling addiction and similar because if it was the law would require EVERYBODY taking money from US citizens, online or IRL, to pay a percentage to organizations helping people that got addicted to gambling. We have something similar here in Denmark. But no. It's about preventing people living far from the physical casinos from gambling.

Oh, and they only targeted poker sites, which is kind of stupid, as it clearly is a game of skill, as opposed to roulette and similar which are much more chance-related. I mean, if poker was a game of chance you should be able to walk up to a poker table and be lucky enough to win your first hand ever against a table full of seasoned poker players. But it never happens because you can't. Chance is a factor but a small one. It only sets the scene but what you do from there is pure skill.

iPads mooted for Qantas flight manuals

Xenobyte
FAIL

No interference

It has been tested again and again, both by (known from tv) Mythbusters and various organizations and found that all flight systems in modern planes are completely and totally shielded from the fairly weak signals in the bands relevant, i.e. those used by cellphones, bluetooth, wifi etc.

The real reason for the ban is most likely a combination of the attention excuse and a motive to sell expensive in-flight alternatives.

Dutch courts: Wi-Fi 'hacking' is not a crime

Xenobyte
WTF?

I'm actually more concerned over...

...the fact that 4chan actually gave info to the authorities. That's not like them.

But then, usually that info is worthless because Anonymous and similar uses intermediary jumps with no logging so tracing them is beyond most police capabilities. So I guess you could say that the amateur had it coming...

BAA accused of banning passengers from filming travel chaos

Xenobyte
WTF?

Doesn't apply to everybody...

Here in Denmark both major television networks had reporters at Heathrow and St. Pancras reporting live about the chaos yesterday evening, complete with interviews with delayed travellers, so it doesn't seem like there's a general blackout in effect...

Lone hacker theory in Wikileaks DDoS attack

Xenobyte
FAIL

What's wrong with this guy?!

"Information Wants To Be Free" - It still applies!

Somebody seriously need to take out that moron and his stupid DDoS attack.

We need more leaks like these. All secrets shouldn't be.

Cinema iPhone pirate escapes jail in test case appeal

Xenobyte
FAIL

FACT?

"Copyright Theft"?!

So they're fighting illegal transfer (theft) of intellectual rights, not copyright infringements?

No matter how they wrap it, use it in stupid acronyms and so on, piracy is NOT THEFT! - Theft implies that something is taken from the owner by a thief with the purpose of either resale or personal use. When you make an illegal copy you take/remove nothing so it cannot be theft by definition.

77% of domain registrations stuffed with rubbish

Xenobyte

Easy solution?

If they can identify those domains with bogus information why don't they simply delete them?

I mean, all registrars I've ever dealt with has it as a requirement that the registration information must be valid so I see no problems simply deleting the bogus domains...

Of course, there's probably a gazillion semi-legit business with more or less bogus registrations due to mismanaged registrations, shoddy practices and so on and they'll get disconnected too. Oh well, that'll teach them to use decent business partners... ;)

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