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Google Explains Why WebView Vulnerability Will Go Unpatched On Android 4.3

Brannon Google phone, made by Google, sold by Google. (535 comments)

Sure it uses some internal components made by other companies, so does the iPhone, so does every consumer product. That's not an excuse to stop supporting a product made by your company.

yesterday
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Google Explains Why WebView Vulnerability Will Go Unpatched On Android 4.3

Brannon How is it the carrier's fault? (535 comments)

All those carriers sell iPhones too and every iPhone is software upgradeable--and has been from day one.

Seems more like an Android problem to me.

yesterday
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Blackberry CEO: Net Neutrality Means Mandating Cross-Platform Apps

Brannon ISPs are effectively a monopoly (307 comments)

because the consumer often has no choice of ISP--that's why the enhanced regulation is justified.

You have plenty of choice in smartphone applications and operating systems.

5 days ago
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Chevrolet Unveils 200-Mile Bolt EV At Detroit Auto Show

Brannon 50 miles per day covers 80% of all driving. (426 comments)

On the occasional day when you have to travel further then a Volt can travel 350+ miles between fillups (on gas). Why is this so complicated? Most people don't have to drive 500+ miles everyday. If you do, then fine, enjoy your gas bill--but YOUR USAGE MODEL IS NOT TYPICAL.

about two weeks ago
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Nuclear Waste Accident Costs Los Alamos Contractor $57 Million

Brannon "It was a mistake by an individual..." (166 comments)

If a single individual can make a mistake of this magnitude, without it being caught by checks and doublechecks, then the process itself is fragile and flawed. That is a systemic problem and deserves a systemic response.

about two weeks ago
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White House Responds To Petition To Fire Aaron Swartz's Prosecutor

Brannon Lots of countries have health insurance companies (189 comments)

Are you saying that there is no working health care in Germany, the Netherlands, Japan or Switzerland?

There is more than one way to make a "working" health care system. With sufficient regulation you can have an efficient health care system which utilizes private insurance companies (and private health care providers). Once properly regulated those insurance companies nolonger compete with eachother on who is best at denying care or filtering out the expensive patients, but rather on lowering administrative costs and incentivizing preventative care.

about three weeks ago
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Inside Cryptowall 2.0 Ransomware

Brannon Buy a Mac. (181 comments)

Done.

about three weeks ago
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Writer: How My Mom Got Hacked

Brannon Except... (463 comments)

1. Lots of Windows users never upgraded past XP (>15%) and have no UAC at all
2. Lots of Windows users have disabled UAC prompting because it's so annoying (seriously, do a Google search for UAC and the top results are about how to disable it)
3. Nobody uses the Windows backup options
4. Malware can't delete a Time Machine backups

Theoretically Macs could be at just as much risk as PCs, but in practice it isn't anywhere close. There are well over 50 millions Mac users in the world, and they have plenty of money, but for some reason they are nowhere near as infected as PCs.

about three weeks ago
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Writer: How My Mom Got Hacked

Brannon Yep, the magic of a well designed computer. (463 comments)

The Mac would have warned the hell out of you about running unsigned code downloaded from the Internet--you have to jump through several hoops (no just click & go). Mac Applications on the App Store are vetted and run sandboxed and users are naturally wary of any Application that isn't downloaded from the App Store--it's just not part of the Mac culture (even for nontechnical users) to click on random crap.

There are trivial backup solutions for Mac (Time Machine + Time Capsule/NAS, or iCloud) which make this sort of problem trivial to clean up after. On my Macs it would be a simple matter of running Time Machine and turning the date back a few days--I could literally do it one handed while yawning.

And nearly every Mac is running a recent version of OS X because Apple makes upgrading cheap, simple, and non-destructive. Any new vulnerability doesn't last very long before it is annihilated from nearly every Mac on the planet. For all these reasons virus authors just don't bother targeting Macs for the most part.

about three weeks ago
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Writer: How My Mom Got Hacked

Brannon Not really. (463 comments)

In theory Macs and Linux could be just as overrun with viruses and malware as Windows boxes but in practice both platforms are nearly perfectly immune to these sorts of attacks for a variety of reasons, including technical things (Macs warn the hell out of you before letting you run unsigned code downloaded from the internet, and nearly all Macs are running very recent versions of OS X) and cultural things (Macs and Linux users have no culture of randomly clicking on executable attachments--that's not part of the non-Windows zeitgeist).

about three weeks ago
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Professor: Young People Are "Lost Generation" Who Can No Longer Fix Gadgets

Brannon And nobody makes a good buggy whip anymore. (840 comments)

Obviously this means that society is in decline.

Exclusively polling people over 50 each generation over the last several thousand years would lead us to believe that society has been in steady decline during that entire period of time--which obviously contradicts the trends of every objective measure of human quality of life & productivity. This itself is the single most compelling evidence I've seen that people get stupider as they age.

As someone pushing 40 I can say without equivocation that I've seen no evidence which suggests a decline in the intellectual capacity, work ethic, or general productivity in younger generations--I'm consistently impressed by most young people I meet and in particular by how well prepared they are for the world they live in, which isn't the same as the world 50 years ago so I'm not sure why we're surprised that some new skills are emphasized while others have atrophied.

about three weeks ago
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Investigation: Apple Failing To Protect Chinese Factory Workers

Brannon You are overwhelmingly wrong. (201 comments)

Competition benefits the consumer directly. Free-market capitalism is not equivalent to unconstrained (i.e. stupid) libertarianism--it only works properly with laws/regulations setting boundaries. Laws need to: (a) prevent the abuse of monopolies, (b) protect workers, (c) prevent collusion, and (d) ensure some limited monopoly on new technology to create an incentive for R&D.

There are some industries where the laws aren't working properly or the nature of the industry prevents competition (like cable tv providers)--the competition in electronics works perfectly--what is failing in the electronics industry is the 'laws protecting workers' part.

about a month ago
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Investigation: Apple Failing To Protect Chinese Factory Workers

Brannon The criticism is fundamentally dishonest. (201 comments)

You and everyone else knows it--the mental contortions required by Android fans to criticize Apple for something that is worse in Android-land is transparent and ridiculous.

about a month ago
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Investigation: Apple Failing To Protect Chinese Factory Workers

Brannon If the manufacturer added more value... (201 comments)

then they could charge more for their services. If the company that designs and retails the product is getting overpaid for their value, then a competitor will undercut them and they'll lose in the market.

That's how the free market works--no other economic system has ever come anywhere close to mimicking the efficiency of free-market capitalism (when there is actually competition as there obviously is in the electronics industry)--but hey, yeah, maybe you'll invent a new economic system within a Slashdot comment that'll change the world.

The real problem here is that there are no laws preventing the exploitation of Chinese workers, or those laws are insufficiently enforced.

about a month ago

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