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Star Trek Continues Kickstarter 2.0

BranMan Re:So how are they (109 comments)

If you ever find a way to download them, please post here and let me know. Us old-timers don't trust this new-fangled intarweb too much - I'd much rather download them, burn them to a DVD and both have a copy forever (everything on the WWW is temporary) and easily pull it out to watch it big-screen.

about two weeks ago
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Obama: Gov't Shouldn't Be Hampered By Encrypted Communications

BranMan Re:No. (562 comments)

Key exchange IS the problem - it relies on trust, partially, and obscure mathematics, partially. The keys are used for both parties, by using parts of the others' keys (i.e. the Public half of a Public/Private key pair) to generate the same Secret key. Then that Secret key is used to encode and decrypt messages.

It is not fundamentally secure. The correct way to do it is to physically travel to the other party and exchange Secret keys directly - and use 4096 bit to boot. With keys that long it *is* mathematically unable to be cracked using brute-force methods. Ever.

about two weeks ago
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Glowing Hobbit Sword Helps You Find Unsecured Wi-Fi

BranMan Oh.... (67 comments)

Isn't that precious! (Sorry, couldn't resist)

about a month ago
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ESA Carries Out Asteroid Impact Drill

BranMan Check out (69 comments)

Check out the Last Policeman series - 3 books based on knowing the world will end in a year from an asteroid impact. Very bizarre and very good reading.

about a month ago
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Putting Time Out In Time Out: The Science of Discipline

BranMan Re:Precious Snowflake (323 comments)

Well said sir, well said.

I have only one daughter, and we raised her about how you were raised, and she has turned out very well indeed.

I also have a sister-in-law that is unfortunately headed down the road of your sister, though maybe not for all the same reasons. It is very sad - we still try to get through to her, but the outlook is bleak.

Stick to your guns with your children when you have them. We did, and it does work.

One tip I can give though: The guiding principal I tried to instill is that everything has a cost - it may not be to you, it may not be money (success at sports takes other things than money - time, effort, patience, determination), but there is a cost to everything. Is what you want worth the cost? If so, by all means, go for it, pay the cost and achieve it. But you aren't getting anything for free - that's the real world.

about a month ago
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Argentine Court Rules Orangutan Is a "Non-Human Person"

BranMan Wait a minute.... (187 comments)

So this court in Argentina declared:
1) This orangutan is a person
2) Decreed that she be banished from civilization immediately. I.E. "Freed"

Didn't anyone ASK this supposed person what they wanted?

about a month ago
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You're Doing It All Wrong: Solar Panels Should Face West, Not South

BranMan Re:obviously they should track the sun (327 comments)

As a guess I would say that if the panels were aligned parallel to the ground with panels pointed down (so the backs of the panels to the sky) it would be for protecting the delicate panels against debris blown in the storm.

about 2 months ago
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18th Century Law Dredged Up To Force Decryption of Devices

BranMan Re:5th Admendment? (446 comments)

Unfortunately you are using the wrong test of a new law - you should never ask "is it being used responsibly here?", but ALWAYS ask "CAN it be used irresponsibly, anywhere?"

If the answer to the second question is yes, it's a bad law. And must be opposed. Because sure as the sun will rise, someone will eventually do just that.

The official procedures of Congress allowed for deadlocking the government permanently - basically sabotaging it from within. That was pointed out decades ago. "Oh, but we'd never do THAT" was always the response. Until a few years ago some members of Congress used it that way. With exactly those results.

Don't look at the specific application being applied today - look to how it can be twisted in the future.

about 2 months ago
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A Mismatch Between Wikimedia's Pledge Drive and Its Cash On Hand?

BranMan Re:You're still doing that? (274 comments)

Then I suggest you never, ever, give one thin dime to any established charity or non-profit. Ever. 'Cause that is exactly what will happen if you do - nature of the beast.

about 2 months ago
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Halting Problem Proves That Lethal Robots Cannot Correctly Decide To Kill Humans

BranMan Problem solved (335 comments)

Just use frangible ammo. For safety's sake.

about 2 months ago
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Photon Pair Coupled in Glass Fiber

BranMan Re:Naive optimism in headline (91 comments)

What is wrong with all you people? Stop using the Internet for exchanging keys! Make a 2048 bit or so secret key, go and physically hand it to the person you want to communicate with, then encrypt to your hearts content - basking in the certainty that your communications is not being intercepted by said agencies.

If 2048 does not seem strong enough, use more. At some point it becomes impossible to brute force crack it.

Key exchange is the bane of security - STOP USING IT. Do NOT depend on it for anything important.

about 3 months ago
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DoJ: Law Enforcement Can Impersonate People On Facebook

BranMan Re:And it could be worse. (191 comments)

LOL - Well played sir, well played.

about 4 months ago
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Which Cars Get the Most Traffic Tickets?

BranMan Re:I have a Supra, and it's true (261 comments)

Just pull into the first place you see and park. Let him go off somewhere else..

about 4 months ago
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FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

BranMan Re: I never thought I'd say this... (353 comments)

Exactly. Most people don't get it, but subsidies are our insurance policy for food. It makes sure it is always there, regardless of the market.

about 4 months ago
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Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion

BranMan Re:$1.1 Trillion over 54 years... (540 comments)

Hi Dave,
    Whew. Thanks for the reply. Have to take this one at a time - there is just too much. I'm afraid you have lived much too sheltered a life.

Freedom of Religion - is very special, and it is not everywhere by any stretch of the imagination. Common across the world? Wow. Um... No. Iraq is falling apart due to a lack of this - people are killing each other over there in Sunni vs. Shiite violence. They are two sects of the Muslim religion, and everyone in Iraq thinks of themselves as Sunni or Shiite - not Iraqi. It is tearing them apart - to the brink of genocide. Look into it - please. The news media does a poor job of it.

Also look into the persecution of Muslim immigrants in France - they were rioting because they were not allowed to get jobs - by the government. Look into the IRA - Catholic vs. Protestant in Ireland. Killing each other with bombs and machine guns just for being of the 'wrong' religion. Look into the background of the Puritans having to leave England in the 1600s (yes it was a long time ago) - can you even conceive of the level of DESPERATION of a religious group to leave everything they own and have ever known to embark on ships to reach a new land they have never seen to maybe, god willing, survive the journey, just to have a chance to live in peace and practice their religion? I know I can't.

I use the examples above as France, England, Ireland seem very very close to what America is like. There are hundreds more examples all through history. I don't know - Crusades anyone?

Freedom of Religion is very rare - rarer than it seems growing up in the US. Not unique to the US, but rare. Unique may be that we actually codified it into Law - the very Constitution itself.

And no, I don't think American culture is this list of things - I think it is built on these things, like the foundation to a building. It is these basic things that helps make us different in the world, and allows us to do all the awesome things we do.

about 5 months ago
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Cuba Calculates Cost of 54yr US Embargo At $1.1 Trillion

BranMan Re:$1.1 Trillion over 54 years... (540 comments)

I will answer this as a serious question: What is American Culture? Complicated question - complicated answer:

Nationalism - we started as a Nation - collection - of States. Roughly the size and specialization of European countries. Forming as a Nation we have changed from early days "I'm a Virginian!" to modern days "I'm an American!". This is in vast difference to the rest of the world - the old USSR never got this far as it never held together long enough, even though it too was a collection of States - there is no tribal-ism, there is no clan-ism, racial bigotry is minimal (there are those who would argue, but compared to the rest of the world that erupts in literal genocide from time to time, ours is nothing).

Upward Mobility - by and large there is no constraint on individuals becoming successful. Gates is a billionaire, but so is Zimmerman. Refugees can come here with the clothes on their backs and little else and become successful business people. As a corollary to that we have homeless too.

Rule of Law - The Law rules the land, and with some argument, covers all equally. Property rights are pretty much paramount - what is yours remains yours. We have exceptions to that that some would argue, and I agree there is no absolute. But the fact that those exceptions get such attention is because they are rare. And worth fighting against. If the government or a corporation wants to do something bad, they need to hide it. And be in a shit-storm if it comes out.

Freedom of Religion - Pretty much a founding principal, and makes us one of the few places in the world there can be open talk of the FSM without fear of repercussions.

Capitalism - Basically we have an economy that works by incentive (I do things to make money, then can spend it how I want) instead of direction. Greed is a great motivator and helps us work hard - cause it benefits us. Directly.

Global Economic Interdependence - We NEED the world - the whole world - as we need materials that are scattered all over the planet. That is a big reason we are in everyone's business - we need to keep the oil, and wheat, and molybdenum, and rare earths, and everything else flowing everywhere, just so we can do all the things we do. So we work to keep the world stable (for us) as that benefits us (greed again - great motivator!) directly.

How's that for a starter - fee free to add to the list.

about 5 months ago
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3 Short Walking Breaks Can Reverse Harm From 3 Hours of Sitting

BranMan Re:Standing Desks? (176 comments)

One of my colleagues bought a standing desk from a Kickstarter. So search for that. About $100, all cardboard (and not flimsy - weights 20-30 pounds and he can sit on it without a problem)/

Can't beat that price

about 5 months ago
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Taking the Ice Bucket Challenge With Liquid Nitrogen

BranMan Re:I'm starting to wonder... (182 comments)

Yep - darned right. Five gallon bucket full of water == 40 pounds. Lifted straight over your head, then twisted to dump it on you. Not the easiest thing in the world to do.

about 5 months ago
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First US Appeals Court Hears Arguments To Shut Down NSA Database

BranMan Re:More, done watching (199 comments)

Very. Well. Said Sir.

about 5 months ago
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Deputy Who Fatally Struck Cyclist While Answering Email Will Face No Charges

BranMan Re:No, it wasn't. (463 comments)

Actually the PO DID break traffic regulations - says so right in the summary. The reason he hit the biker is that the PO drifted into the bike lane. That is the infraction. He was distracted by his laptop, went out of his lane, and struck a biker who was in the correct lane. PO's fault, and it definitely should be negligent homicide.

about 5 months ago

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