Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Slashback: Errata, Futurity, Portality

timothy posted about 13 years ago | from the donut-goes-to-costa-rica dept.

Slashback 193

Slashed back tonight: The (slight) return of the Y2K behemoth, good news for those locked out of port 80 by the recent unpleasantness, one interested party's response to Stephen Hawking's genetic-engineering ideas, and even an update on the Scarfo key-logging story.

Better than world-wide anarchy and privation. kejoki writes: "I came into work today and nobody had voicemail. We use an ancient AT&T system 25 (Merlin) with the Audix automated attendant/voice mail system ... not my bailiwick but the boss was going nuts trying to figure it out.

He finally called his System 25 guy and found out that quite a few people were having the same problem. Inspiration hit, and he set the system date back before 31 Dec 1999 ... whammo! The voice mail returneth.

AT&T->Lucent->Avaya, of course, no longer supports the a matter of fact the boss seems to recall getting a letter from AT&T saying that they'd be taking care of the Y2K problems which might be in their equipment; but another soon after saying that support for the System 25 would be dropped as of 31 Dec 1999 ... hmmm.

Oddly enough, he's had a problem with the system giving a database I/O error for a while, but since he reset the date that has also vanished.

All very interesting. At any rate, if you have a System 25 and you can't get your voice mail, set back the date!"

And in related news, Che Fox writes :"The OpenLDAP project is one of the first to be hit by a major bug due to the S1G (one billion seconds) Unix time rollover. The slurpd replication daemon, which pushes changes from the master LDAP server to the slaves, no longer works now that time has rolled over to 1 billion seconds. This means that all LDAP-using networks in the world that use OpenLDAP and slave servers to replicate the data (very common) are now broken. There is a fix available against both the 1.2 and 2.x OpenLDAP releases in the OpenLDAP CVS repository."

You may assume your former activities for the moment. Agent Green writes: "I was checking out my firewall logs this morning and noticed an unusual amount of port 80 traffic and come to find seems that AT&T Broadband has lifted their port 80 restrictions on its residential network. Let's see how long this lasts ..."

Probably until the next worm that takes over everyone's port 80, whatever OS it runs under.

So what did one giant say to the other? jshep writes: "Inventor Ray Kurzweil recently responded to physicist Stephen Hawking's concerns regarding the progression of AI (previous Slashdot story can be viewed here). Kurzweil takes aim at Hawking's suggestion that we use genetic engineering to augment the power of the human brain."

The man behind the curtain is ... uh, vital to national security! camusflage writes: "Reuters has a story (courtesy of Yahoo) that says the judge in the Nicodemo Scarfo believes the "national security" gambit about as much as the /. community does regarding the use of keyloggers. The most choice quote is "I don't know what it means. It's gobbledygook. More gobbledygook," referring to the argument put forth that the keylogger is a sensitive piece of national security. An assistant U.S. Attorney indicated he would provide "classified and unclassified summaries of the system's operation and more affidavits detailing the national security aspects at stake," next Friday."

cancel ×


Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

fp (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275812)

Yeah, that's right. I got yer fp right here!

Yellow Power Ranger (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275899)

This post is in honor of Thuy Trang, the original Yellow Power Ranger, who was killed in a car accident a week ago today. Thank you.

Falaha Laaa Pauste (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275814)

Cool dtuff is waht hmm made of down on dga meba.

Suckers (-1)

ubertroll (153053) | about 13 years ago | (#2275817)

\ |\ \
| / \ \
| | \ \
| | \ \ __
/ \ \ \/__|__,,..---v--.
| |__,,\.--"""\/ | \
| | \ _>
| | _ _ _ _ | /
| | /_v_v_v_\..---""'`-'
| | __,,.| | | | |
| / \ \_h_h_h_/
| | |
| | | eeeee e e eeee e e
\ |\ | 8 " 8 8 8 8 8 8
\ | \___/ 8eeee 8e 8 8e 8eee8e
\ | 88 88 8 88 88 8
\ | 8ee88 88ee8 88e8 88 8
| |
| | eeeeeee e e eeeee e eeee e e
| | 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
| | 8e 8 8 8eeee8 8e 8 8e 8e 8eee8e
| | 88 8 8 88 88 8 88 88 88 8
| | 88 8 8 88 88ee8 88 88e8 88 8
| |
| |

Re:Suckers (-1)

egg troll (515396) | about 13 years ago | (#2275859)

That needs an ASCII bird perched upon it, Ubertroll. Nonetheless, I admire your persistance in trolling. Salute!!

Re:Suckers (-1)

ubertroll (153053) | about 13 years ago | (#2275870)

Birds don't suck. So the text in that post would be wrong if there was a penis bird.

(_.._ `'-.,--,
'-._'-._ `\a\\
'.___.' (|
7 ||
/ .' |
/_.-' ,J
/ \
|| / ;
|| | | __
`\ \ | / ''\_
'. \ /.-` {}|
/\ `;_.-' _/
\_;((( _.--'\_/
.((( _.-;\
.--'` _,;`'.'-;\
penis __.' '._.'\\
bird --' | \ |


Retarded_One (518093) | about 13 years ago | (#2275902)

/ x \
I |
I \==
[] \\ Timothy\
[] \\ / o o \
[] && [][][][][][][][]| > /
[]8===* O [] \ \_/ /
||\\ [] [] [] \----/
|| \\ [] [] []
|| \\[][][][][] [][]

Imagine a time when the words "gay" and "lesbian" were taboo in the media- a time when your newspaper had blatantly homophobic stories on the front page and the entertainment industry didn't give a second thought to negatively portraying lesbians and gays on television or in motion pictures- a time when lesbians and gays were otherwise invisible in the media. This was all occurring less than ten years ago, before the formation of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD).

Copyright © 1994 - 2001 Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, All Rights Reserved.
"GLAAD" and "Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation" are registered trademarks of the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Inc.


Re:Suckers (-1)

Pr0n K1ng (160688) | about 13 years ago | (#2275976)


BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275825)

The "national security" idea is just our tax dollars at waste being used to pay shit for brain FBI agents and the like to do nothing but sit around and occasionally shoot innocent people. Now they're tying up a court case and slowing down our court system trying to make some vague claims about keyloggers having a national security aspect. Yeah, okay. Fuck you FBI. Fuck you NSA. Stop killing innocent people and wasting our taxpayer money.

Re:BS (1)

two_socks (516862) | about 13 years ago | (#2275921)

The nature of law enforcement requires that police forces do everything they legally can to pursue and prosecute criminals (this does not mean I condone everything they do). If I had to catch a malicious hacker, I would want to have a keylogger, and all the better if I can keep the particulars of its operation from the people I intend to use it against. The checks and balances in the american criminal justice system come into play, and judges strike down untenable requests/demands made by law enforcement. It ain't pretty, but it works as well or better than anything else out there.

Re:BS (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276106)

All too often the judges don't strike down untenable requests/demands made by law enforcement. And people get killed as a result. It's time to shut down the FBI.

slurpd replication daemon (4, Redundant)

wiredog (43288) | about 13 years ago | (#2275829)

I don't know why, but "Slurped replication demon" just sounds funny as all hell. Try to visualize slurping a replicating demon.

Re:slurpd replication daemon (1, Insightful)

tjgrant (108530) | about 13 years ago | (#2275903)

I don't know about your house, but I know that around our house slurping has been used as part of the replication process on three occassions ;^)

Re:slurpd replication daemon (2)

wiredog (43288) | about 13 years ago | (#2276001)

Yeah, but are you demons?

Re:slurpd replication daemon (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276109)

Why is this a troll?? I found it funny as hell! Mod it up!

blah blah blah Sucks (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275830)

I must say, has been getting worse and worse as the days progress... I find better shit in my backyard..

Please use the toilet, not your backyard. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275850)

Please use the toilet, not your backyard.

Re:Please use the toilet, not your backyard. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275858)

How about I shit in your mouth? That's probably where it belongs, you cuntsmack.

comcast @home (2, Redundant)

bluelip (123578) | about 13 years ago | (#2275832)

@Home is still blocking 80. Dang it. No biggie though. I redirected the main page elsewhere and then have that page come back in on a different port.

Re:comcast @home (1)

8bit (127134) | about 13 years ago | (#2275861)

Not where I live (delaware)

Just thought I'd let ya know (1)

datavortex (132049) | about 13 years ago | (#2275920)

My cable IP, bought by Netscape AOL Warner CNN AT&T Time (NAWCAT) is still being port 80 filtered, at least as of this moment. While I hope that changes, it's too late for them. I already scheduled my Earthlink DSL installation. And just in case anyone from AT&T sees this: I got all of my friends who had cable accounts to switch with me. I hate you people But I am full of love. :)

Argh. @Home. (-1, Flamebait)

phutureboy (70690) | about 13 years ago | (#2276024)

Great. My (awesome) cable ISP is switching over to @Home in a couple weeks. I am *not* looking forward to it. If the service sucks as bad as everyone tells me it does I'll bite the bullet, get a frac T1 and move all my servers from colocation to in-house to offset the cost.

Please, someone, tell me that @Home is not really all that bad.

Re:Argh. @Home. (1, Funny)

Ophidian P. Jones (466787) | about 13 years ago | (#2276090)

Well, you know, they ARE probably filing for bankruptcy tomorrow. :)

Re:Argh. @Home. (1)

mosch (204) | about 13 years ago | (#2276098)

@home kicks some ass for me. I regularly get 100K+ transfers, even during busy times. The installation went smoothly, and it only took about 5 minutes on to find an article detailing how to setup my freebsd firewall to use the connection after the tech left.

so far no problems with the connection whatsoever. no outages, no unacceptable slowdowns, nothing.

Yeah (3, Funny)

l33t j03 (222209) | about 13 years ago | (#2275833)

The OpenLDAP project is one of the first to be hit by a major bug due to the S1G

In other words: Expect Slashdot to go down for 6-8 hours tomorrow without explanation.

Re:Yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275940)

No microsoft software was affected. Goes to show that Linux sux

Re:Yeah (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275993)


Re:Yeah (-1, Offtopic)

DankNinja (241851) | about 13 years ago | (#2275994)

Wow, what a fucking idiot.
It was not the operating system, it was
the software OpenLDAP =/= Linux.

Re:Yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276046)

You are, of course, correct.

The failure of OpenLDAP is in no way a (GNU/)Linux problem - rather it is a damning indictment of Open Source as a development model. Many eyes failed to make this bug shallow, hmm?

Also, and I'm disappointed you didn't spot this, 'microsoft' should have a capital 'm' (they look like this: M) and there should have been a full-stop (or period, if you prefer) '.' at the end of the claim. 'sux' is a slang spelling and therefore acceptable in casual use, but you knew that.

Re:Yeah (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275953)

In other words: Expect Slashdot to go down for 6-8 hours tomorrow without explanation.

As if it wouldn't be down for 6-8 hours without explanation, regardless?

Get the real scoop on what billg is up to []

Re:Yeah (1)

SumDeusExMachina (318037) | about 13 years ago | (#2276133)

It'll either be that or their horrific comment searching code that'll do them in.

Yay for open source!

Another S1G bug (5, Informative)

stox (131684) | about 13 years ago | (#2275834)

cvsup, a utility used to synchronize CVS repository's, was hit by the S1G event. Version 16.1d is available to fix the bug.

Yet Another..... (3, Interesting)

[amorphis] (45762) | about 13 years ago | (#2275922)

The Jive [] Forum BBS software was hit by the bug as well, for the same reason as everybody else: the sort order changes when the values are stored in a character field.
Here's a comment from one of the developers regarding the design decision:

Hey all,

Thought I would respond since I'm a Jive developer. There were quite a few reasons for the date to be stored as it is:

1) Java uses the millesecond values since 1970 as its native date format. However, unlike Unix, this value is stored as a 64 bit long instead of a 32 bit integer. Effectively, this means there will never be date overflow. In any case, using the millesecond value is very easy and fast in Java.

2) Database support for dates is horrible. Most db's have a DATETIME or TIMESTAMP column type. However, all databases seem to implement them differently. Further, support for 64 bit numbers is also poorly supported across many databases. Therefore, we were forced to go with our own encoding (millesecond values), and to use character columns instead of numeric ones. This lets Jive work with over 10 different databases instead of 1 or 2.

3) Yep, we never thought about the date rollover bug until about a month and a half ago. Adding a few padding 0's was a simple fix and was released on Aug 8th as Jive 2.0.


64 bits? (2)

Pope (17780) | about 13 years ago | (#2276062)

Then what the heck are we going to do in 292,278,994 [] ?!

Re:Another S1G bug (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275999)

Lovin' Jews is easy cause they're beautiful


I'd be lying if I said the Jews were taking over the country.

Re:Another S1G bug (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276026)

The plural of "repository" is "repositories".

The Grammar Nazi

"AI" is an unusual deception. (1)

Futurepower(tm) (228467) | about 13 years ago | (#2275839)

"AI" is an unusual deception. Normally things that are artificial are presented as genuine. Artificial Intelligence proponents adopt the opposite approach. They sell something that is genuine and call it artificial.

The computer programs called AI represent the real intelligence of the programmers who wrote them.

Re:"AI" is an unusual deception. (1, Offtopic)

Kalabajoui (232671) | about 13 years ago | (#2275950)

I think that to a limited degree, AI already exists. There is no reason why computers won't eventually be able to perfectly mimic or exceed humans at all intellectual tasks. The true breakthrough in CS will be the creation of AC, (Artificial Consciousness). Once the principals that make consciousness, self-awareness, and emotions possible are understood, a machine that is 'alive' in a human sense of the word will be possible. Without consciousness, a computer will
never be anything more or less than a number cruncher. The most advanced intelligence without emotions is like a well crafted doll in that it appeals to our human senses, while having none itself.

about time (1)

Antipop (180137) | about 13 years ago | (#2275840)

Thank god AT&T has unblocked 80. I had a very stable mail/apache/ftp server that my friend ran and let me leech bandwidth off of that was unfortunately hosted by them. I've been so busy with school I haven't had a chance to find another host, so now I guess I won't have to. Hurray!

Re:about time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275883)

In an internal memo I've received from @Home administrators, the block on port 80 was lifted in an effort to find Code Red infected hosts on the network. As I understand it, port scans will take place at 12-hour intervals and infected hosts will be deprovisioned (taken offline.) I'm not sure if this means the block will eventually go back into effect or not, but I wouldn't doubt it.

Re:about time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275888)

AT&T in Atlanta is still blocking port 80. I guess we are the stepson of the rest of AT&T!

genetic engineering the brain (5, Informative)

perdida (251676) | about 13 years ago | (#2275848)

There is not one genetic engineering.

There are many kinds of GE.

One kind splices genes from other species into a species. This has problems with inaccurate gene-snips and potential allergies to foreign genetic matter.

Another kind of GE is simply eugenics, which many farmers have used for centuries; selecting the best representatives of a species to breed together, or hybridization. Eugenics presents political problems in humans.

Another kind of GE is the turning on of inoperative genes through hormonal treatments or other chemicals. Cancer genes (oncogenes) are turned on through sun damage and other carcinogenic interactions, for instance. This type of GE may be dangerous but it is noninvasive and can be done through conventional current gene therapy methods. I support this kind of work.

Now onto the spurious ethical questions.

There is no a-priori model of the human. Humans have been evolving for thousands of years, and our lifestyles and diets have a big part to play in that. The conscious manipulation of this process has the opportunity, actually, to be more ethical than the unconscious genetic engineering we have done.

The americans imported people from Africa in the slave trade and created "hybrid races" of humans, for instance. This has led to changes in frequency of various positive and negative genetic traits in the US population. Although slavery itself is reprehensible, I don't think anybody would consider treatments for sickle-cell anemia (which occurs primarily in Africans and African-Americans) immoral genetic engineering, for instance.

Conscious manipulation of human intelligence is a scientific technology question and is morally neutral. Methods and political superstructures surrounding the issue are not.

Re:genetic engineering the brain (3, Interesting)

Cuthalion (65550) | about 13 years ago | (#2275932)

I don't think anybody would consider treatments for sickle-cell anemia (which occurs primarily in Africans and African-Americans) immoral genetic engineering, for instance.

Not really on topic, but the reason that sickle-cell anemia is more prevalant in Africa (and other tropical regions) is as follows:

Sickle-cell anemia is a recessive trait. If you have only one of them, you are not anemic. However, for whatever reason, you ARE more resistant to malaria.

screw genetic engineering the brain- (1)

cosyne (324176) | about 13 years ago | (#2275961)

I think genentic engineers shlould be working on a genome patch that disables the "wisdom teeth" gene.

Re:screw genetic engineering the brain- (0, Offtopic)

belg4mit (152620) | about 13 years ago | (#2275983)

I could donate some of my DNA to start.
I only developed the two bottom wisdom tetth.

Re:screw genetic engineering the brain- (1)

visualight (468005) | about 13 years ago | (#2276074)

I had 5, an extra one on the top left. The Army dentist took all 5 out at the same time, gave me *FOUR* Tylenol III's and 24 hrs quarters. I still hate that guy.

Re:genetic engineering the brain (-1)

gazz (101967) | about 13 years ago | (#2276096)

Humans have been evolving for thousands of years

Yeah, like the human race started around 0 ad


try .5 Million years since first occurence of HomSaps

Hi (-1)

egg troll (515396) | about 13 years ago | (#2275852)

Taco you fucking suck. Slashdot has gone downhill. Why don't you start monitoring your website? Instead you try to code the monitor into Slashcode, which only causes the trolls to work even harder.

If you would just accept that any post at -1 is a troll and leave it at that, this website would be much much better.

Re:Hi (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275875)

Egg Troll, you fucking suck. Trolling has gone downhill. Other trolls will monitor your actions on this website. Don't bother working harder, you will lose.

Why don't you just accept the fact that you are a fucking LOSER! Please leave, and this place will be much better.

Oh and by the way, your mom is looking a little SPUNKY today. Could it be? OH HELL YEAH! She was a goood fuck!

Re:Hi (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276003)

You fucked his mother? Oh, you totally win. Touche, fucker. I hope your little tirade comforts you tonight, when you're still up at 2am bitterly jacking yourself off while wondering how you're going to go to school tomorrow with a tampon stuck up your ass. FUCK OFF.

Another important Slashback (0, Offtopic)

LocalYokel (85558) | about 13 years ago | (#2275854)

I'm still not sure why this submission got rejected, but since it's still not posted:

Darth VIA Strikes Back, Countersues Intel

JUST TWO DAYS after Intel sued Via for alleged patent infringement on its Pentium 4 chipset, it faces legal action itself from the smaller chip company.

Via has or will take out lawsuits in both Taiwan and the US for alleged patent infringement, anti-competitive behaviour, and "wilful destruction of Via property" - a criminal charge.

According to Via, Intel infringes on its intellectual property rights with the 845 chipset and with the Pentium 4 CPU.

Read the rest of this article... []

Re:Another important Slashback (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276000)

Nice try, you off-topic karma whore! :-)

Wow, 2 things to ba happy about! (4, Interesting)

Enigma2175 (179646) | about 13 years ago | (#2275864)

1) I think it is fantastic that the judge in the Scarfo case isn't dazzled by the FBI's "National Security" defense. This case has absolutely nothing to do with national security, the FBI is trying to establish precedent above the law. This time it is the keylogging technique, next time it is Carnivore v.2.0 that they try to hide behind the "national security" shield.

2) Being a subscriber, I am extremely happy that AT&T has lifted the ban in HTTP servers (I know I may assume too much given the anecdotal source). Most of the servers that run on the @home network are small, low traffic servers that don't cause much of a problem(unless they are infected). They must be worried about losing even the small percentage of customers that run web servers. Economic hard times are hitting everywhere...

What is the truth? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275876)

Webster's defines "truth" as "(1) A system of wheels and flanges assembled in a triplicaate pulley arrangement to generate maximal torsional leverage, (2) The square of the product of the difference of the ratio of a cheese wheel and a duck with three legs from a wire-rimmed monocle and the number of fleas in the northenmost region of Bhutan, minus a left-handed baseball glove. Note: left handed. I rest my case.

On the subject of onions (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275881)

They make me cry. Isn't there a law against that or something?

first fuck buffalo post (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275884)

yup, this is it. where are you people? we need to wipe it off the map!!

national security... (4, Interesting)

nettdata (88196) | about 13 years ago | (#2275897)

I could see how divulging how the keylogger works could be a national security issue... once it's been released how it works, people could start looking for the tell-tales, and then once word gets out about how many people are actually being logged, all hell breaks loose... both in and outside the US.

Re:national security... (0)

TeslaHz (262224) | about 13 years ago | (#2275927)

As one of those being logged, this will add impetus to my actions. Stay tuned for further instructions.

Re:national security... (1)

merchant_x (165931) | about 13 years ago | (#2275928)

The point was made in the article that if the device does indeed need to remain classified for the puposes of national security, it should not be allowed in domestic cases. I think that point is valid. If a government can not disclose how something works it should not be allowed to use it on its citizens. But of course that argument hasn't worked for carnivore or whatever it's called these days.

Re:national security... (1)

HerrNewton (39310) | about 13 years ago | (#2275965)

Furthermore, anyone suspicious of being logged will likely do a physical search for the device, placing a 'classified national security device' in unauthorized hands.

Re:national security... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276111)

Ya know....

It might just be some script kiddy hack and they're too embarassed to say what it is.

Re:national security... (4, Interesting)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | about 13 years ago | (#2276088)

This is insane. How do we know that its just a keylogger? How do we know that its not a virus? How do we know that the government is only using it on people it has obtained a warrant for? How do we know that the government does not install it first, and then gets the warrant if necessary?

National security can go to hell. Worst case scenario (and this is unlikely)---the FBI looses its ability to log keys, and has to go back to doing real detective work. Big Deal. The U.S. will go on, and we will know that our rights are not being infringed.

If the FBI thinks that said documents really contain information pertaining to the case, subpeona the password.

I think if the government has the probably cause(is that the standard? whatever it is) necessary to get a warrant, the person targeted should know about it, and be able to challenge it, in the interets of privacy.

You have a right to know if you have been charged, so why don't you have a right to know if you privacy has been violated? Similarly, don't you have a right to not incriminate yourself? If the fifth amendment prevents the government from using a subpeona to get a password, than it is at least idealogical consistant that is should protect you from unknowingly giving the government your password.
And if it doesn't, and they say no, its a crime in and of itself, and the government than has every right to put the wiretap on whatever computers said person uses. This still provides a reasonable chance to catch the crook, or stop his illegal behavior, and still protects privacy rights. Yeah, this may reduce the probablity of catching them, but hey, it is better for 1000 guilty men to go free, than for 1 innocent man to be punished.

And, of course, I need to say this.

They that give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." -- Benjamin Franklin, 1759.

Nobody but nobody... (3, Offtopic)

HoldmyCauls (239328) | about 13 years ago | (#2275923) going to pay my thought on this subject much attention, but here goes:

It is time for us to stop. Just to stop and take a moment to reflect on the knowledge we have and what is possible with it in hand. We make bigger, better, faster computers, and put them into operation immediately, for use in labs, and hospitals, and all the places where we need accuracy, and checking, and double-checking. We start cloning and genetically engineering humans without regard to the psychological consequences -- what will it be like to grow up knowing you wouldn't have just "happened" the way normal kids have. When we finally reach deep down enough inside the atom and find the particle we're currently looking for, that's not good enough. We have to build a bigger accelerator, abandoning the last one.

We need to start taking some responsibility -- the genetic code is a programming language in which we're not yet versed enough. Mistakes made there won't send up a compiler warning, they will ruin someone's life. Who's making sure we know what we're doing -- not what, WHY -- when we (as a global society) develop something like artificial intelligence? Sure, popular media -- so-called sci-fi movies and books -- pretend to address the issue, and some writers actually focus, but good luck getting those involved to turn an eye outward long enough to convince them of the moral issues involved.

The surest way to be sure of what we are doing is to stop relying on an economical system that simply doesn't work. Capitalism sucks, and we all know it. Technological tools are wasted on popular culture and ignorant masses. So many resources are wasted, so much time is wasted, so many lives are wasted. And before anyone posts beneath me calling me a Communist or whatever, no, I'm not. I just have no faith in ANY system that doesn't work, that is run by greed, and I'm open to suggestion. I'm a human being first and foremost, and I don't see how the world as we know it is run by and for human beings.

Every time I think of it, I flash back to Gödel, Escher, Bach: no system can ever be complete which relies on itself to define itself. It's a good book, and thank you to those who recommended it a couple months ago. I got it out that day, and I've read the first part so far, and I got it out again to finish it as soon as I returned to school.

Then again, I could be a complete idiot. Maybe I don't understand science and industry as well as I think I do from my limited viewpoint. Please post rational thoughts below.

Of course, maybe I should just stick to writing poetry...


Re:Nobody but nobody... (2)

geomcbay (263540) | about 13 years ago | (#2275945)

Bah, don't be such a one-timer!!


Re:Nobody but nobody... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275998)

Of course, maybe I should just stick to writing poetry...

Sounds like a plan.

Re:Nobody but nobody... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276014)

I don't understand the connection between abandoning Capitalism and GE and Gene Therapy. Other, non-Capitalist states will and do also engage in genetic research, yet their success has been no greater nor less than that of the West.

As a former biologist (turned telecom analyst/programmer)I agree not enough is understood about gene interactions to proceed without great caution- however Stephen Hawkings is well aware of our current limitations in this academic arena. His concerns about AI are probably legit. While I can't remember the exact article, a few months ago , ran an interview with a leading researcher that indicated that he had suggested to the US govt. to implement a "Carnivore" like application that searched the Internet for spontaneous generation of intelligence- and he was taken seriously.

The other VERY important thing to realize is that our ability to use GE is itself a BIOLOGICAL PHENOMENON. Culture has evolved with us- not against us - and it is subjet to the same rules of selection that any physical trait is.

Re:Nobody but nobody... (3, Interesting)

Winged Cat (101773) | about 13 years ago | (#2276030)

The problem with arguments like that, is that the only people who will pay them any heed are exactly the people who would care about the morality. If you ask them to stop, they may...but the unethical will continue blithely on. And then [PICK_RESEARCH_FIELD] will be dominated by the unethical: zealots (religious or otherwise) out to make life miserable for those who do not believe as they do, corporations who care for little save their current quarter's bottom line (even at the expense of their own future), and the just plain uninformed (who lack any basic education about the field with which to make moral decisions).

The result, then, is that it is the duty of those with any shred of ethics to aggressively pursue their research at the fastest possible speed, so that [PICK_RESEARCH_FIELD] may be tapped for the benefit of all humanity and countermeasures developed against its negative applications. This ensures that the ethical decisions that matter will be made by those who have some ethics, whether or not they have the fullest possible advantage of foresight. Perhaps the debate can rage while the research goes on, to give them some foresight...but to hold back the research until the ethics have been settled is to ensure catastrophe. (Besides, for many of these fields, the ethics may never be settled. See, for example, the continued debate over abortion, decades after - at least in the US - the issue was settled by the Supreme Court.)

Re:Nobody but nobody... (1)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | about 13 years ago | (#2276051)


Don't worry, that's not directed at you, but this discussion is one that is incredibly difficult to get into.

While idealogically, I am fully in support of the capitalistic ideals (why you might ask? because my somewhat bizarre philosophical ideals (which are almost, but not quite, radically individualistic) jive with what capitalism could allow), I think the capitalist experiment that exists is a failure. However, I am not quite ready to lay the blame at capitalism, the idealogical framework.

Don't get me wrong, in fact, I am rather sure that 97% of slashdotters reading this have already stopped, and are about to inudate me e-mail box with hate mail :). I am not saying capitalism is flawless. But I am not ready to evalute questions of blame involving economic frameworks, because I think the blame lies elsewhere.

Perhaps, the problems that exist in today's society are not dervived from the capitalistic system, but rather from more general sociological factors that affect decision-making on an individual level. . . . Capitalism sucks, since person A is willing to totally screw group B, even though all the other members of group B cooperate for the good of the whole.

You say you have no faith in ANY system that doesn't work. Well, I say I have no faith in ANY system at all.

You may be a human being, you may live for your fellow man, you may be a wonderful person. But there are people around you who aren't. There are many, in fact, who are able to totally write-off all the other human beings in the world, for another $1000. As long as this remains the case, and system which invests any sort of administration capacity in human beings runs the risk of subversion, be it in a small way, or a large way.

Here's three postualtes for you:

1. At any given time, any system which invests any sort of administrative authority in a human being runs a non-zero risk of said human being corrupting the system for personal gain at the cost of the whole. This is true for a monarchy, for a republic, for a corporation, even for Plato's republic. Obviously, proper selection techniques can reduce the risk of this, but the risk is always non-zero, and I would argue that the risk is a siginifcant one at any give point in history.

2.Corruption is created more easily than it is eliminated, as subtle structural changes often go unnoticed, and are generally 'doctored' to give lip service to the public welfare. This is made worse because of perspective. It is easier for one in a position of power to come up with minor structural changes to a body of law than it is for the generally apathetic public at large to conduct an audit of law.

3.As such, any sort of economic framework is doomed to an ever increasing degree of corruption.

This logic paints a pretty dark picture regarding government, and the picture grows even darker as one realizes that in most cases, the original framework of said government was not ideal, as is often quite horrible. Ever read Metamorphisis? Starts bad, gets worse....

Here's where I que in the anarchists. Unforunately, even they can't respond to some of these problems. Anarcho-capitlists don't realize that a corporate framework can easily supplant a govermental framework. If you don't believe thats the case, you are an idiot. Say right now the United States Government dissolved itself. Furthermore, say no other nation on the planet interefed with anyone living on North American soil (Don't mean to slight Canadian and Mexicans, but it makes my explanation easier). You are absolutely, positively, dead wrong if you don't believe that some multi-billion dollar company could not pick some relatively low population state, like.....Colorado, equip a corporate security force, and setup a feudal state.
Anarcho-communists say this couldn't happen in their system. Well, they are right. But you can't even provide some sort of utopian dream scenario in which we didn't need some sort of monetary system. Why do I say that is a part of your utopia? Because it is. Equitable distribution of goods and wealth (which is what money is for) wouldn't be necessary in the Anarcho-communist utopia, since anyone who is able to should automatically (or should I say, automagically) provide whatever any other person needs. From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs.

Sad situation, isn't it? I guess, then, I need to provide some sort of advocacy (of my own, that is). Let me preface this: If you have a better idea of what I should support, tell me. This is just my conclusion on the avaliable data. The current system provides the best possible opportunity for improvement within any inviduals life. You are completely right in saying that much is wasted, and that many are abused, and, indeed, that the current system is very, very evil. None the less, of all the possible socio-economic systems I can think of, our form of capitalism is the one that allows me the greatest strength in redefining my surroundings. While my life will probably be a utter failure, and while it is damn near impossible to do this, I am driven by the ideal that if I can make a ton of money, I can improve the world that much more. (If only I was Bill Gates).

The changes that you, and I, and every other human being who deserves the title will never happen by altering the political system. The best we can possibly hope for is maximizing our ability to change the world (even if the possibility of our dreams coming to fruition is next to nothing).

Don't get me started on technology. While I am not willing to defend capitalism (though I am willing to live with it as the best possible tool avaliable) I will defend technology to my death. You are right, perhaps we shouldn't try to genetically engineer beings until we are absolutely sure we won't ruin thousands of lives. But you are dead wrong if you think we should stop research that could improve thousands of lives. Like stem cell research--The possibilities for regenerating nerves alone make me giddy--and you can kindly go fuck yourself if you are going to tell me that Jane Doe has to deal with her paralysis since research is dealing with devil. Technology doesn't do bad things---people do bad things. As long as we can hope to improve a person's life, we should shoot for that possibility. You're right, no system of knowledge (well, I classify my statement to be more Godellian), no formalized system of logic is ever complete->But that's life. Development of any system of thought(read that as living/experiencing) is the same form of techonological evolution. Indeed, one can even study some areas of the 'technology' of thought in linguistics and communication. Not that they are the same thing, but I think one can draw the parallels. Don't condemn any form of technology because it isn't the final development, or because it can be used negatively. One can think genocidal thoughts, but that doesn't mean we should strike whatever brain area controls anger (I know, I know, there is no particular area that does that specifically, but there are certain brain states that relate to anger). Technological development is the only way to reduce the scarcity of resources, and the only way to improve the benchmark lines for standards of living.(other than massive depopulation, but if you believe in rapid, massive depopulation, you are advocating outright murder).

You're right--->There are lots of bad things in the world. But we can't go back in time(not to Jeffersonian Agraian society, nor to the animalist heaven of the cave man), so we must press forth, and at this moment in time (unless some radical movement really manages to step up and truely overthrow the establishment), capitalism+technology is our only hope for escape.

And you are right, it is a very slim hope indeed. But I'm somewhat optimastic, generally because people like me (and I'll hesitate a guess) and you (who are displeased with the world as it is) are pretty stuborn.

Hmmm....sorry about the length of this, but I have had too many cups of coffee ;-). Please reply.

P.S. Of course, perhaps I am the greatest fool.

Re:Nobody but nobody... (2, Redundant)

Pope (17780) | about 13 years ago | (#2276077)

I just have no faith in ANY system that doesn't work, that is run by greed, and I'm open to suggestion. I'm a human being first and foremost, and I don't see how the world as we know it is run by and for human beings.

Humans aren't perfect; ergo, any system devised by Humans won't be perfect.
However, we can put in some checks and balances to even out the problems.

It is, in fact, why I believe that neither Communism nor Objectivism will ever actually work: both assume a priori that all involved in the system will behave like perfect little robots with no free will. Face it: just as there will always be overly-motivated people who will do anything to succeed including screwing over their mother, there will be slackers, and every option inbetween.

Re:Nobody but nobody... (2, Insightful)

MegaFur (79453) | about 13 years ago | (#2276085)

Please note: some of the stuff said here might sound a little harsh, but it's not really meant to. This is not a flame.
Capitalism sucks, and we all know it.

Yes, yes, yes capitalism sucks. This isn't a totally original observation, you know. The thing is--can YOU give us something better? Until this happens, capitalism shall remain dominant.

Think about it. When Jesus Christ was up and walking around, there was still a tax collector! Tax collector implies taxes. Taxes imply money. Money implies capitalism. It's been around for a *really* *long* time. It's gonna be hard to get rid of it.

Every time I think of it, I flash back to Gödel
Gödel's Incompleteness Thm (AFAIK) says that a system P, which might be complete, can't have its completeness proven in its own system. The upshot is that there must, in any set of logical systems, be at least one logical system whose completeness or correctness is simply assumed rather than proven. I'm not sure what this has to do with capitalism. It's not really a logical system anyway. Trying to apply mathematical reasoning to capitalism is like trying to apply it to English (it's a (not very logical) system too) or something. GIGO.

Of course, maybe I should just stick to writing poetry...

Poetry has sometimes played an important role in major political and sociological changes in the past. If you want things to change, you've gotta try to change peoples minds. If you write enough poetry, perhaps you can achieve this.

Re:Nobody but nobody... (1)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | about 13 years ago | (#2276123)

Gödel's Incompleteness Thm (AFAIK) says that a system P, which might be complete, can't have its completeness proven in its own system.

How the hell do I type Godel correctly? I'm stupid, and unable to figure it out.

Anyways, I can't find the book I am looking for, but Godel's theorem is basically says that given any formalized system of logic, one can generate a self-referrential statement that is neither true nor false.

Thats not actually the theorem, but it is, I think the best explanation of it for the laymen.

An example, in English, is:

"This statement is false".
Is this a true statement, or a false statement?

One can easily generate a symbolic example as well. I would do it myself, but here's a site that's done it better :)

Here's the Puzzle []

Re:Nobody but nobody... (1)

WhiteWolf666 (145211) | about 13 years ago | (#2276127)

Oh yeah---I meant to say, yes, its hard to apply this logic to English.

But, it isn't as hard to understand the relationship between knowledge and Godel's Incompletness Theorem.

If you are still having problems doing this, read Stanislaw Lem's Imaginary Magnitude. Focus on Golem [Some roman numeral I can't remember].

A haiku response to fears of domination via AI. (1)

The Milky Bar Kid (411137) | about 13 years ago | (#2276117)

Anyone who's scared
of AI, don't worry so -
we can't do shit yet.

what scares me about
AI research is how much
hype and FUD appears.

I don't buy it (3, Insightful)

tester13 (186772) | about 13 years ago | (#2275925)

Wigler insisted the government went by the book when it obtained a search warrant to install the key logger device, but he acknowledged that current statutes did not specifically address what type of warrant was needed for such a device. ``The problem is the technology has advanced quicker than the law,'' he said, adding current statutes do not state which law applies when authorities use something like the key logger device.

I don't buy it for a second! It seems completely disingenuous of the Wigler to suggest that this is a legal grey area. I am almost positive that this evidence will be suppressed (rightfully). I don't think many people if it were explained to them would see this as anything besides a wire tap. Disagree?

Re:I don't buy it (2)

jeffy124 (453342) | about 13 years ago | (#2275931)

Bill gates attempted similar arguments that Wigler has. He said that because the computer industry has to keep up with the times or otherwise be left behind (duh). He said that anyone with an innovative idea can take teh market by storm quickly. Hence MS was forced to make sure they're able to compete with the market. As we all know, the argument didn't fly too well.

Re:I don't buy it (1)

JohnnyBolla (102737) | about 13 years ago | (#2275982)

Actually, it seems more like surrepticiouly installing a camera in the guy's house.

Re:I don't buy it (1)

Mike A. (19999) | about 13 years ago | (#2276065)

Certainly it's effectively the same as a wiretap, but the law doesn't work that way. Since the law doesn't actually say anything about keyloggers, it's up to the courts or legislature to make that decision. This case may, in fact, be the one that establishes keyloggers as effectively identical wiretaps in the eyes of the law.

IANAL and all that sh<beep>t.

Those fine coders (0, Flamebait)

Pac (9516) | about 13 years ago | (#2275938)

Isn't it good when the patch announcement comes in the same paragraph of the bug announcement?

They must be charging millions for this kind of responsive support... :)

Re:Those fine coders (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275970)

Do you suck cock for a living?

National Security must be preserved. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275939)

This judge is a raving lunatic. National security is more important than some criminal's rights. The constitution can and has been suspended in the name of national security. The FBI is right. This judge should be sent to prison for attempting to subvert the FBI.

Re:National Security must be preserved. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275962)

and you should be tied up and repeatedly anally raped because your a wanker.

Re:National Security must be preserved. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275981)

No, you should be tied up and repeatedly annaly raped and sent back to Canada, you dirty communist mother fucker.

Re:National Security must be preserved. (0)

DankNinja (241851) | about 13 years ago | (#2276004)

wow, youd don't know very much about the law do you? I guess that is why you post anonymously.

Re:National Security must be preserved. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276011)

And apparently you don't know much about trolling...

S1G caused more damage than Y2K? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275949)


It's gobbledygook. More gobbledygook. (0)

Spootnik (518145) | about 13 years ago | (#2275964)

Congrats to FBI agents who dedicated tremendous efforts to hide a keylogger into my keyboard, since everything I type is publicly readable on Slashdot.

Port 80 blocking (4, Troll)

sting3r (519844) | about 13 years ago | (#2275986)

Folks -

Everyone who keeps complaining about the port 80 blocking needs to put the situation in perspective. (Yes I am one of them.) http is one of those "nice" Internet services that will easily run on any port, without changes to the client software. Try to do that with Windows SMB networking - you can't (easily) because the port range is hard-coded into the OS and can't be changed without much hacking. At least we have the option of simply changing our URLs to end with ":81" to solve the problem. And if you happen to be serving a domain off your cable modem and the :81 makes your URL look ugly... well, cable modems just weren't designed for serving domains anyway, so look for another provider.

If @home *really* wanted to be jerks, they could block incoming connections to your PC (except as required by ftp/irc clients). We agreed not to run servers so that's well within their rights. But they're not doing that and it's trivial to work around the port 80 block, so let's just be happy for what we have (and enjoy the newfound lack of Code Red sponsored congestion).

See what billg has up his sleeve []

Re:Port 80 blocking (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275995)

"just weren't designed for serving domains"

Ok, you're a dumbfuck.

Re:Port 80 blocking (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276017)

You're a fucking cheapskate. Why don't you march your yiddish ass over to a real ISP and pay for the services you use? Shitbag.

Re:Port 80 blocking (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276083)

Eat shit you turd! Fucking loser get the fuck home to your mommy!

Re:Port 80 blocking (1, Insightful)

bradleyjay (413670) | about 13 years ago | (#2276082)

YOU may have agreed to this, but I did not.

I am an AT&T customer who's ability to run a server was protected by AT&T's TOS, as long as I acepted all security risks. I did accept all risks, and had my servers patched long before anyone knew about CodeRed.

AT&T then, without my knowledge or consent, made me into an @home customer, forcing me to abide by a different TOS, and didn't even inform me of this!

It was only when I brought it to their attention that my right to run a server is protected by their own TOS, that they told me that I now had to abide by @home's TOS.

But AT&T gladly take my money every month.

Microsoft & code theft (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2275991)

Recently, I've witnessed an increase in posts claiming that microsoft has stolen linux code for use in their Windows 2000 operating system. These posts never give concrete examples, but instead rely on strawman arguments and wild claims.

Well folks, I've got access to the Windows 2000 code (I'm a CS graduate student at Rutgers University, which has access to it for educational purposes), and I've discovered the truth, which I'll get to in a moment.

First, a brief history.

Windows 2000 and NT are based on VMS design principles. VMS (Virtual Memory System) was DEC's operating system for for their VAX (Virtual Address eXtender) and later Alpha computers. It was a contemporary to Unix, but unlike AT&T, they didn't allow it to be ported to other architectures, which explains why it never gained Unix's popularity, despite being more secure and more powerful.

In the early 80s (while future "Open Source" icon Linux Torvalds was still wearing underoos), Microsoft did experiment with their own Unix operating system, and even planned on phasing out MS-DOS in favor of it, but scrapped that plan due to problems with Unix's ease of use, inefficient use of system resources, and archaic design. They sold MS-Unix to SCO, and signed a non-compete agreement.

This explains why Microsoft chose to use VMS as a basis for their next generation operating system.

Returning back to the Windows 2000 source code: I've examined it thoroughly, and cross compared it in design, style, and composition.

Microsoft stealing Linux source code for windows 2000 is as likely as Spam being the next theme ingredient on Iron Chef.

Re:Microsoft & code theft (-1)

ubertroll (153053) | about 13 years ago | (#2276006)

Windows 2000

The Microsoft® Windows® 2000 operating system is the ideal platform for the next generation of business computing and addresses the full range of customers' computing needs, from laptops and desktops to high-end clustered servers. The operating system helps organizations Internet-enable their business with a reliable, manageable infrastructure that is optimized for existing and emerging hardware.

Windows 2000 Professional is the operating system for desktops and notebooks for all sizes of business. Windows 2000 Server is an entry-level solution for running more reliable and manageable file, print, intranet, communications and infrastructure services. Windows 2000 Advanced Server includes additional functionality to enhance availability and scalability of e-commerce and line-of-business applications.

Re:Microsoft & code theft (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276009)

Actually, the topic of code theft has come up quite often on Microsoft Watch [] , and several instances of code theft in the memory management subsystem have been discovered. Although most of VMM is BSD-derived, the newer page scheduler came straight out of Linux 2.2 (though it was replaced again in 2.4 - expect the 2.4 scheduler to show up in XP). Also, a surprising amount of ext2 code showed up in NTFS 5.

Vulture Hawking Articles (3, Informative)

wmaheriv (160149) | about 13 years ago | (#2276029)

Has everyone interested in the Hawking story seen the recent Reg articles?
If not, check them out:
Stephen Hawking predicts cyborg ascendancy
Cyborg metaphysics

Truly yours (0)

Frank White (515786) | about 13 years ago | (#2276045)

The underboss of this holocaust, truly yours Frank White [] !

AT&T Port 80 restriction. (3, Informative)

Lumpy (12016) | about 13 years ago | (#2276066)

It never existed for me. ever cince the "ban" I tried daily to see if It was put into effect yet. Hmmmm I never lost accessability(sp) to my machine.

I also know of a few others that also never lost Port 80 access to their AT&T@home home ran servers.

Although all of us run apache on linux, so it might have been a ban for only Microsoft products ....Wouldnt that have been a hoot!

my suspicion is that it was only in selected areas.

Re:AT&T Port 80 restriction. (1)

FunkyLinux (311498) | about 13 years ago | (#2276094)

Just a little FYI. Some areas of @Home are only restricted on port 80 to other @Home users and, as such, can be accessed outside of the @Home network. In addition, in my area, @Home NATs the 'real' IP address onto their private network IPs. So, if you need to run services between nodes(or need to test your anti-codered worm-patch) you can connect to all your neighbors on the private network!
You say, "But FunkMan, how do I find my private IP address???" You can either do a little digging on your own or on some models (3COM) you can plug into the serial port and watch the thing boot using Minicom or your favorite command foo on the device file.

Have fun.

Survivial at a point dependant on GE? (3, Insightful)

Empty Sands (6814) | about 13 years ago | (#2276124)

Although I'm concerned about some of the reckless GE experimentation conducted. I've always had this feeling at some point in human progress we might require the ability to GE ourselves in order to survive as a race. That might be considered a contradiction in itself.

Still because of this I'm not willing to reject GE out of hand, it seems better to be informed if and when this event might occur.

Of course existance of the moral ability and maturity within the modern culture to be able to deal with GE technology is debatable at present.

I love old ladies (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 13 years ago | (#2276128)

Old ladies are my specialty [] .












&n bsp;&nbs p; &n bsp;&nbs p; &n bsp;&nbs p; &n bsp;
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?