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Comments

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Next-Gen Thunderbolt: Twice as Fast, But a Different Connector

AmiMoJo Re:New connector great thanks (121 comments)

The charge was led by Apple.

No, it wasn't. Apple wasn't part of the group that developed USB, and tried hard not to support it for a long time. I have a 3rd gen iPod that can't even transfer files over USB, you must use Firewire.

What really made USB popular was when USB 2.0 hit, and again Apple had nothing to do with it. PC manufacturers started adding more USB ports and it became easier to attach a number of devices. Who would attach a keyboard and mouse when their machine only had two USB ports? HP in particular was one of the companies that helped develop USB 2.0, and they started moving to USB keyboards and mice as standard around then too.

Apple's biggest contribution was getting rid of the floppy drive in preference of Firewire/USB drives. They themselves tried to push Firewire for drives though, refusing to add USB compatibility to their storage peripherals until iPod compatibility with PCs forced them to. That was around 2003/4 IIRC, very late to the game.

23 minutes ago
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Next-Gen Thunderbolt: Twice as Fast, But a Different Connector

AmiMoJo Re:Thunderbolt: The TIFF of cables (121 comments)

At the moment it looks like it will end up like Firewire. Some advantages but cost and the multitude of different cables will mean that USB continues to prevail as the main way most people connect stuff to their PCs.

38 minutes ago
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Next-Gen Thunderbolt: Twice as Fast, But a Different Connector

AmiMoJo Re:Intentional sabotage? (121 comments)

It's a shame they didn't think about security when setting up all that stuff. Just like Firewire and PC-Card the ports are vulnerable to DMA attacks, meaning an attached device can read the computer's memory and modify it at will. There are already tools to exploit this, both open source and proprietary.

Law enforcement, government agencies and criminals alike love this attack. Maybe that's why they left it in. The only mitigation is to disable the port, preferably physically.

42 minutes ago
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Apple Fixes Major SSL Bug In OS X, iOS

AmiMoJo Re:Snow Leopard (81 comments)

Lion doesn't have any PPC support, so might not be an option. Even if it is Lion runs very poorly on machines of that age, so would be a massive downgrade in terms of performance and productivity.

Remember all the stick Microsoft got about "Vista compatible" machines that ran it like a dog? "Possible" and "advisable" or "practical" are different things.

about an hour ago
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NIST Removes Dual_EC_DRBG From Random Number Generator Recommendations

AmiMoJo Re:What's the cost to use a real rng vs psudo (70 comments)

They are pretty cheap, and there are a number of projects on the web if you fancy building your own. The problem is that you need more than one, because relying on a single source of randomness is a bad idea. They need to be different types too, in case the non-randomness is systemic.

I suppose that's why there are so few commercial solutions. For them to be used seriously in encryption they would have to be sold as "you need this and a couple of our competitors' products too".

1 hour ago
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NIST Removes Dual_EC_DRBG From Random Number Generator Recommendations

AmiMoJo Re:What's the cost to use a real rng vs psudo (70 comments)

No offence, but I'm not convinced you or anyone else would notice, or publicize it if you did.

Detecting such a back door could be hard. Maybe there is something the NSA knows about RNGs that you don't. Maybe what the fab produces isn't exactly what you drew in your CAD package. Maybe you are just lying, like the people working for RSA did. It's impossible for the rest of us to know either way.

That's why it is always a good idea to use multiple sources of entropy. Even if some of them do have backdoors the others should help reduce their effectiveness. The on-CPU RNG would need to be combined with other RNGs and PRGNs to be useful.

1 hour ago
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Tech People Making $100k a Year On the Rise, Again

AmiMoJo Re:"Buy you a nice modest home" (163 comments)

Dude, the average house price in the UK is around 9-10x the average wage. Income tax for the over £32k bracket (similar to $50k) is 40%.

1 hour ago
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Tech People Making $100k a Year On the Rise, Again

AmiMoJo Re:$100k today the equivalent of $80k in 2004 (163 comments)

If someone will do the job for $X and not leave for greener pastures then $X is what they're "worth".

Only because businesses that don't pay enough are externalizing the cost of wages. If someone doesn't get paid enough the shortfall is made up by things like state benefits, subsidized healthcare, subsidized after-school activities for their children so they can work longer, food banks, debts that will eventually be written off etc.

Eventually it comes back to bite the business in the arse. People on low pay buy less, they might get ill or die, or the government might put up corporation taxes to pay their benefits. In 20 or 30 years time when the company needs new skilled employees those kids who were neglected because their parents were too busy working long hours will be all that's on offer for the price they are willing to pay.

Treating human beings like machines who perform a task is both evil and short sighted.

1 hour ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Can We Create a Culture of Secure Behavior?

AmiMoJo Re:Forget idiotproofing, how about licensing (150 comments)

Exactly. The best way to "encourage" a culture of security is regular beatings until things improve.

5 hours ago
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WRT54G Successor Falls Flat On Promises

AmiMoJo Re:$409.99 WHAT THE FUCK (71 comments)

Just get a Buffalo. Good OpenWRT/DD-WRT support (some come pre-installed with DD-WRT), good price, good hardware. Linksys have been shit since the late 90s when I first encountered them, and the WRT54G was never that great to begin with (how many hardware revisions were there?)

5 hours ago
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Our Education System Is Failing IT

AmiMoJo Re:oh (275 comments)

I worked on one team with 3 of them. One was female, the other two male. One of the males had a good business head and presentation and passable technical skills. The other fellow was out of his depth and was compensating by trying to talk over everyone. The gal was the smartest of the lot and new her stuff (the QC side of things) better than either of the male devs, but their cultural propensity to just marginalize or ignore the female (or try to speak for her) meant the best way to let her excel was to arrange interactions with her that did not involve the two indian males.

If you just took the word "Indian" out of there it could apply to pretty much anywhere.

5 hours ago
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Will the Nissan Leaf Take On the Tesla Model S At Half the Price?

AmiMoJo Re:No (337 comments)

It's because the car is mainly for the Japanese market, where they actually rather like it looking different. I'm somewhat surprised they even sold it in the west. Thing is Japanese manufacturers seem to get away with it to some degree - just look at the Prius. I expect the next Leaf model will look more "normal" though.

yesterday
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GitHub Founder Resigns Following Harassment Investigation

AmiMoJo Re:The term "Sexual Harassment" is very misleading (163 comments)

If this were true the founder could start a massive lawsuit for being forced out. For some reason he seems unwilling to test it in open court though.

yesterday
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GitHub Founder Resigns Following Harassment Investigation

AmiMoJo Re:wife at the office (163 comments)

That's not why she objected to the word at all, don't try to twist her words. She objected to a sign proclaiming Github to be a meritocracy because it isn't, and saying it is just denies that there is even a problem.

yesterday
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Oklahoma Moves To Discourage Solar and Wind Power

AmiMoJo Re:Storage (423 comments)

You just rate the entire system at 80% of what you expect it to produce given current conditions, and small variations due to small passing clouds are absorbed. As I said, battery smoothing works well too.

yesterday
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Eyes Over Compton: How Police Spied On a Whole City

AmiMoJo Re:Does it work? (183 comments)

It is easy to identify those ants later if you are the police. Just wait until they pass some CCTV and go get the footage. See what building they came out of, or what car they were in (which was picked up by automatic number-plate recognition).

yesterday
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The Ethical Dilemmas Today's Programmers Face

AmiMoJo Re:Not a programmer's problem, a managerial one (166 comments)

The 90% case, and write a letter (keeping a copy for yourself) to your boss explaining the problem and that you have made him aware of it. Maybe complain to his boss that the deadline is unreasonable. There must be a reason why it exists, presumably due to someone else screwing up.

The kind of situation you describe doesn't exist. There is always more to the story than just you and your boss making random demands.

yesterday
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The Ethical Dilemmas Today's Programmers Face

AmiMoJo Re:I've grappled with the ethics of CS for 20 year (166 comments)

Did you tell anyone? Like the local newspaper, perhaps anonymously? In cases where it can be shown that the defendant knew what they were doing was dangerous and likely to result in disaster the award in any lawsuit tends to be higher, which in turn makes lawsuits a less attractive alternative to doing the right thing.

yesterday
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Administration Ordered To Divulge Legal Basis For Killing Americans With Drones

AmiMoJo Re:Why only Americans are of concern ? (300 comments)

Thing is the government isn't at war with most of the people it kills, at least by any normal definition of "war". It means that it's basically open season on Americans because hay, they might just turn round and decide to kill you because you attended the wrong wedding or something.

yesterday
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Oklahoma Moves To Discourage Solar and Wind Power

AmiMoJo Re:Storage (423 comments)

With wind and solar there are unpredictable variations in the power provided.

No true. In fact the UK National Grid considers wind and solar to be more reliable than fossil or nuclear generation because it is distributed.

We have extremely good short term weather prediction because we can observe clouds coming in from a long way off with satellites and ground observation. We can predict wind speeds over the next few hours with a high degree of accuracy too. If one set of solar panels or one wind turbine fails you don't lose much, compared to a fault at a fossil or nuclear plant that can take 1000MW or more offline instantly and without warning.

In other words on the time scales required to ramp up other forms of energy to cover dips in solar and wind output we have no trouble predicting what will happen. As battery based smoothing comes in (Japan already has a few 50MW packs installed for wind farms) it becomes even less of an issue.

yesterday

Submissions

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Japan surpasses Kyoto Protocol emission target

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about a week ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Japan's environment minister says the country has surpassed the target for reducing greenhouse gas emissions that it pledged under the Kyoto Protocol on global warming. Japan had lowered emissions by a 5-year average of 8.4 percent in the 2012 financial year compared to 1990 levels, more than the 6-percent goal the country pledged under the Kyoto Protocol. The 2012 figures are significant as they include the first full year after the March 11th Tohoku earthquake disaster, during which no nuclear power was available."
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Japan marks 3rd anniversary of 11/3 disaster

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about a month and a half ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Today Japan marks the third anniversary of the 11th of March 2011 disaster when the country was hit by a magnitude 9 earthquake huge tsunami and severe nuclear accident. More than 18,500 people were killed or went missing. Nearly 3,000 others died while evacuated from their homes, and over a quarter of a million people were still living in temporary housing as of February. Work to build new housing on higher ground is lagging behind schedule.

Three reactors melted down at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant following the quake and tsunami, but the exact cause of the accident is still unknown. How massive amounts of radioactive materials from the reactors were dispersed is also unclear. Today was also the day when hundreds of former residents announced that they were suing TEPCO, the plant operator, and the government for additional compensation."
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Measures fail to stop Fukushima plant leaks

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 2 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi plant has been coming up with countermeasures to deal with repeated leaks from tanks of contaminated water. But despite the measures, 100 tons of radioactive water leaked on Wednesday and Thursday. The estimated volume of the leaked radioactive materials caused Japan's nuclear regulator to rank the leak a level-3 serious accident. The international scale of nuclear and radiological events ranges from zero to 7."
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Kickstarter project tries to fire payloads into space from a giant cannon

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 2 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "The Starfire Space Cannon project aims to launch small payloads into space from the ground using a large gun. 13.7m (45 foot) gun claims to use multiple charges to reduce the force exerted on the payload, although the pitch is devoid of any explanation as to how this technique might actually work. The creators warn that "we could have a really bad day and the gun could blow up or the trailer could fall apart."."
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Google and EU agree on changes to search result pages

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 3 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Google has agreed to display competing site's results along side those from its own products in search results. The agreement comes as part of an EU investigation into Google's domination of the search market and its promotion of Google products at the top of each page. The EU has published screenshots (scroll down) showing how the changes will look once rolled out."
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Majority of Mac OS users not getting security updates

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 3 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "According to security company Sophos around 55% of home users and 18% of enterprise users have updated to Mavericks, the latest version of Mac OS (10.9). Unfortunately Apple appears to have stopped providing security updates for older versions. Indeed, they list Mavericks itself as a security update. This means that the majority of users are no longer getting critical security patches. Sophos recommends taking similar precautions to those recommended for people who cannot upgrade from Windows XP."
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Ask Slashdot: What next for Slashdot?

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 3 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Most of you are probably aware of the beta site, and there have even been a few survey emails going around. For some reason no-one thought to use the actual site's discussion system to ask about the future of Slashdot. Times are changing and Slashdot needs to make enough money to continue, but at the same time almost all the site's value comes from the user comments. What should Slashdot do to ensure it lives on for the next 15+ years, and what can we do to help?"
Link to Original Source
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Google's wireless charger for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 launches today

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 5 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Google's wireless charger is now available from Play. The charger uses a magnet to hold the device in place while charging, and comes with a 1.8A (9W) power supply, although it isn't clear what the charging rate of the device is."
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Fukushima leak traced to overflow tank built on a slope

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 7 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "The on-going leak of radioactive wastewater at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant has been traced to an overflow tank that was built on a slope. Because one side of the tank is lower than the other water slops over the side when it is nearly full. TEPCO estimate that 430 litres of wastewater seeped outside the barrier around the tank and say some of this water may have flowed into the sea, about 200 meters away. They detected 200,000 becquerels per liter of beta ray-emitting radioactive substances in water pooled inside the barrier around the tank. The safety limit is 30 becquerels per liter.

Officials say that a miscommunication with contractors lead to the blunder."
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GE Canada struggling to find PDP-11 programmers for its nuclear control systems

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 7 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "A representative from GE Canada has posted a job offer to the Vintage Computer forum for a PDP-11 assembly language programmer. Apparently the original job posting failed to turn up any qualified candidates to support the nuclear industry's existing robotic control systems, which they say they are committed to running until 2050. If they are having trouble finding anyone now one wonders how hard it will be in 37 years time."
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Ministry of Sound suing Spotify over user's playlists

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 8 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "The Ministry of Sound, a UK dance music brand, is suing Spotify because it has not removed user's playlists that mirror their compilation albums. The case will hinge on whether compilation albums qualify for copyright protection due to the selection and arrangement involved in putting them together. Spotify has the rights to stream all the tracks on the playlists in question, but the issue here is whether the compilation structure — the order of the songs — can be copyrighted."
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Fukushima Daiichi leak raised to level 3 severity

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 8 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Japan's nuclear regulators have raised the level of severity of the radioactive water leak from a tank at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant. It is now a level-3 serious incident. The revision from level 1 is based on estimates of the volume of radioactive substances leaked. The International Atomic Energy Agency supports the revision. They say the tank leak can be assessed separately from the Fukushima Daiichi crisis as a level 3 incident. Japanese experienced a level-3 nuclear event in 1997 with the fire and explosions at a fuel reprocessing plant in Tokai Village, Ibaraki Prefecture. 37 workers there were exposed to the leaked radioactive substances."
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Thyroid cancer found in 18 Fukushima children, 25 more cases suspected

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 8 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Medical examinations in Fukushima Prefecture following the nuclear crisis of 2011 have detected 18 children with thyroid cancer, with a further 25 suspected cases awaiting confirmation. The group checks 360,000 who were aged 18 or under at the time of the accident. The incidence rate of thyroid cancer in children is said to be one in hundreds of thousands. In Japan, 46 people under 20 were diagnosed with thyroid cancer in 2006."
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At least 300 tonnes radioactive water leak found at Fukushima, discharge ongoing

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 8 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Radioactive water has leaked from a storage tank into the ground at Japan's Fukushima plant, operator TEPCO says. Officials described the leak as a level-one incident — the lowest level — on the International Nuclear and Radiological Event Scale (Ines), which measures nuclear events. This is the first time that Japan has declared such an event since the 2011 earthquake and tsunami. A puddle of the contaminated water was emitting 100 millisieverts an hour of radiation, equivalent to five year's maximum exposure for a site worker. In addition up to 300 tonnes a day of contaminated water is leaking from reactors buildings into the sea."
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Samsung and Motorola match Apple for smartphone customer satisfaction

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 9 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "This year's ACSI Benchmarks for Smartphone Brands measure consumer satisfaction with different smartphones and brands. ACSI surveyed 4,112 phone owners in the U.S. who judged their phones on overall experience (customer expectations, perception of overall quality, value for money, customer loyalty) and experience of quality (ease of making and receiving calls, ease of sending and receiving text messages, performance of phone in terms of battery life, etc.) Samsung took the top spot, followed by Apple and Motorola all within a few percentage points of each other. RIM's Blackberry brand didn't do so well."
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Japan to shut down last two operational reactors, becoming non-nuclear

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 9 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "The only two remaining nuclear reactors generating power in Japan will be shut down for maintenance next month, leaving the country without any nuclear power for the first time in 14 months. Reactor 3 will stop on 15/9, with reactor 4 to follow two weeks later. Four utilities have asked the Nuclear Regulation Authority to restart 12 reactors in 6 power plants. Their applications are currently being screened, but no clear prospects for restarting any of the reactors have emerged."
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Apple faces new China worker abuse claims

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 9 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Technology giant Apple is facing fresh allegations of worker rights violations at Chinese factories of one of its suppliers, the Pegatron Group. China Labor Watch has alleged that three factories of Pegatron violate a "great number of international and Chinese laws and standards". These include underage labour, contract violations and excessive working hours. Li Qiang, executive director of China Labor Watch, claimed that "our investigations have shown that labour conditions at Pegatron factories are even worse than those at Foxconn factories". The campaign group said that it had found that average weekly working hours in the three factories investigated by it were approximately 66 hours, 67 hours, and 69 hours, respectively."
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Apple faces new China worker abuse claims

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 9 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "Apple is of worker rights violations at Chinese factories of one of its suppliers, the Pegatron Group. China Labor Watch has alleged that three factories of Pegatron violate a "great number of international and Chinese laws and standards", including underage labour, contract violations and excessive working hours. Li Qiang, executive director of China Labor Watch, claimed that "our investigations have shown that labour conditions at Pegatron factories are even worse than those at Foxconn factories". The campaign group said that it had found that average weekly working hours in the three factories investigated by it were approximately 66 hours, 67 hours, and 69 hours, respectively."
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Samsung in record quarterly profits too

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 9 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "It seems that the smartphone and display panel markets are booming for Samsung. Net profit was 7.8 trillion won ($7bn; £4.5bn) in the April to June quarter, a 50% jump from a year ago. Flagship products such as the Galaxy S4 are said to have contributed to the increase. Samsung's display panel unit alone, which has made Samsung the world's biggest TV manufacturer, also reported a 46% surge in the same period to 1.12 trillion won. Earnings were boosted by strong demand for high value-added panels for IT as well as TV panels sized 60-inch and over."
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Chinese firm Huawei in control of UK net filters

AmiMoJo AmiMoJo writes  |  about 9 months ago

AmiMoJo (196126) writes "The BBC reports that Huawei, one of the world's largest manufacturers of telecoms equipment, is controlling popular ISP TalkTalk's web censorship system. The system, known as Homesafe, was praised by Prime Minister David Cameron. Customers who do not want filtering still have their traffic routed through the system, but matches to Huawei's database are dismissed rather than acted upon. In other words there is no opt-out. Mr Cameron has demanded similar measures be adopted by all internet service providers (ISPs) in the UK, to "protect our children and their innocence"."

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