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How an FBI Informant Led the Hack of British Tabloid "The Sun"

Bruce66423 Lapdog is to fail to charge (38 comments)

Because his crimes occurred whilst he was perhaps covered by an FBI immunity, but not a UK one. For the FBI to expect us not to charge under these circumstances is to impose their choices, on the lapdog, who usually merely licks the master's face in response.

about two weeks ago
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How an FBI Informant Led the Hack of British Tabloid "The Sun"

Bruce66423 LOL - nicely said! (38 comments)

n/t

about two weeks ago
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How an FBI Informant Led the Hack of British Tabloid "The Sun"

Bruce66423 So the UK can charge him? (38 comments)

Given that the US has sought the extradition of UK based offenders who hacked US sites, there seems no reason for him not to be surrendered to Her Majesty's hospitality, even if he was given 'immunity' by the US.

Or will the UK once again prove to be a lapdog of the US government.

about two weeks ago
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Four Dutch Uberpop Taxi Drivers Arrested, Fined

Bruce66423 Uber seems to be fitting under UK existing law (282 comments)

We have a separate class of 'Licensed Hire Vehicles' which are not as flexible as taxis - you have to book them rather than hail on the street. This does require explicit registration of the vehicles, but I've seen one with 'Uber' flashes, so it seems to work. This is a good solution for people who want to make a real living out of Uber, rather than just occasional.

http://green.autoblog.com/2007...

is an alternative outcome - registration to avoid London's congestion charge (for driving in the streets of much of central London)

about two weeks ago
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Co-Founder of PayPal Peter Thiel: Society Is Hostile To Science and Technology

Bruce66423 A mixed story (238 comments)

People like technology when it works - but notice when it fails. If it works, it becomes assumed as part of life - and no longer noticed; the more one thinks about the internet, the more incredible it is.

Part of the problem is that real science is HARD. Most people can't cope and avoid it at school. They dismiss us as geeks - not least to cover their own failure to master the subject. So there's a built up frustration that comes out when it does go wrong... not healthy - but perhaps inevitable given that most people are not up to mastering the science they depend on to live (and all of us won't master it ALL!!)

about three weeks ago
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Glut of Postdoc Researchers Stirs Quiet Crisis In Science

Bruce66423 Simply not true from the teaching perspective (283 comments)

In terms of the knowledge necessary to teach a subject, that hasn't risen that much. It's important to realise that higher degrees don't teach the breadth of a subject necessary for teaching - they focus down on a remarkably small area. In as far as being an academic is being a teacher, there hasn't been that much change in the knowledge needed to do the job.

The complexity comes from the fact that academics are expected to contribute their subject's advance, and that does need the depth of knowledge. However in practice the skills learnt by a PhD are more than enough to do that; the reality is that post docs exist to absorb the excess supply of PhDs.

about three weeks ago
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Glut of Postdoc Researchers Stirs Quiet Crisis In Science

Bruce66423 Close the supply taps (283 comments)

Historically university posts were open to people with a BA (e.g. John Wesley and John Newman at Oxford in the 18th and 19th century) That it now takes a PhD and post doctoral work to get the same post means that we are training too many. Therefore the only solution is to row back on the PhDs being generated; given that governments are looking for money saving measures, this would seem an obvious starting point.

about three weeks ago
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Marriott Fined $600,000 For Jamming Guest Hotspots

Bruce66423 $600,000 is peanuts (278 comments)

It's a rounding error in the accounts of an organisation like that; at least one more zero on it would have been a good start...

about a month ago
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Obama Administration Argues For Backdoors In Personal Electronics

Bruce66423 Holder wants US tech companies to commit suicide (575 comments)

In an international free market, if US companies are seen to succumb to this pressure, open source and foreign companies will come along and sell items that (they claim( don't have the back doors. Either the US can shut up about this, or it can lose its companies...

about a month ago
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The Executive Order That Redefines Data Collection

Bruce66423 Personal arms have never actually worked (126 comments)

In reality the Feds have overwhelmed every constitutional principle that they've found irritating, and the armed uprising has never happened. But it's a nice fantasy that keeps a few people quiet - because they KNOW they can do something about it when... at which point they will just be mown down in a hail of bullets.

about a month ago
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Utilities Should Worry; Rooftop Solar Could Soon Cut Their Profit

Bruce66423 Interesting and challenging, thanks (517 comments)

I guess the question that springs to mind is whether that covers ALL network costs, including the high voltage lines from the power station to the sub station. I'm also wondering whether the rural nature of your area doesn't provide a degree of latency and resilience that may be more absent in an urban environment. But I'm guessing there. But yes, you do make an interesting point; thanks.

I guess the other question about costings is about baseload; the issues are spelt out here:

http://www.economist.com/news/...

not quite sure how that translates to the western side of the Pond.

about a month ago
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Utilities Should Worry; Rooftop Solar Could Soon Cut Their Profit

Bruce66423 Which PROVES they are making excess profits? (517 comments)

The fact that the UK's gas and electricity prices are among the cheaper in the EU is a hint that there's not a lot of price gouging going on, as does the relative failure of the cooperative buying efforts local authorities have organised. Of course it's attractive to blame the providers when price rises happen, and there IS a suggestion that they don't lower prices as rapidly as they might when wholesale prices fall. but I'm less than convinced that the CEGB and the regional electricity boards would have been any better.Yes Labour got itself a nice little bounce at the polls by proposing a price freeze when in its manifesto for the next election; the most probable effect of that is that all the companies increase their prices beforehand

about a month ago
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Utilities Should Worry; Rooftop Solar Could Soon Cut Their Profit

Bruce66423 Oh dear - money grows on trees... (517 comments)

Utilities are boring because they do a simple job which generates small but predictable profits. Therefore investors put their money into them in the expectation that they will remain boring.

When a new development comes along that destroys their business model, one of two things will happen; they will increase their prices, or they will go out of business. Note that 'the government taking them over' is a subset of 'they will increase their prices'. The service that they provide; a reliable baseload supply and a safe network to distribute electricity HAVE TO BE PAID FOR. At the moment those costs are hidden in the average cost of a kWh. If private solar power reduces the average demand some of the time, the average cost of a kWh will have to be increased, or the other features be recognised and paid for.

Ladies and gentlemen, there is no such thing as a free lunch, despite politicians pretending otherwise for several thousand years.

about a month ago
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FBI Chief: Apple, Google Phone Encryption Perilous

Bruce66423 Either Amercian companies provide it or foreigners (354 comments)

So which does he prefer? This way he get to keep the backdoors that have been slipped in - just can't use them for evidence. The alternative is no backdoors. Great publicity for the firms; the FBI complaining they are secure. Anyone would think this has been choreographed...

about a month ago
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Not Just Netflix: Google Challenges Canada's Power To Regulate Online Video

Bruce66423 Netflix / Google's argument is surely valid (109 comments)

The purpose of the BROADCAST regulator derives, historically, from the limited number of channels available on TV, so it was argued that there was a public interest in controlling who put what on the air. The internet is surely more like the press, where there are no such limitations, so there is no justification for regulation. That the broadcast regulator is trying to butt into internet activities does seem like mission creep - always popular with the regulators as generating more jobs for their people, and with politicians who gain some leverage over the media. NOT good for freedom of speech however...

about a month ago
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Is Google's Non-Tax Based Public School Funding Cause For Celebration?

Bruce66423 Expropriation Nationalisation (88 comments)

Expropriation is the theft of a company by the state with no compensation - or as a result of a court order in connection with something else. Nationalisation is the state taking ownership but paying the owners a fair price for the assets. There is obviously a spectrum here; many Asian owned businesses in East Africa in the 60s and 70s were 'nationalised', but the price was paid in government bonds in an non-convertible currency that promptly inflated to zero value.

In the Western context, the process of nationalisation is essentially the same as compulsory purchase of land with a similar expectation of fair value paid. To do otherwise does constitute the state stealing the asset, and would probably constitute a post facto law; this, of course is why we have constitutions...

about a month ago

Submissions

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Out of control naval office bought hi tech silencers

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about two weeks ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.washingtonpost.com/...
You couldn't make this up; an office charged with backup took it upon itself to become an active unit — and spend vast amounts of money (well — $1.6m — that's a lot to you and me, though a rounding error for the Federal government) on silencers... This is a plot out of a John LeCarre!"
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French family in court over vaccination refusal

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about three weeks ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.theguardian.com/soc...
A French court is being invited to consider the evidence that the use of aluminium and mercury in the vaccines for Polio, Tetanus and Diptheria make them dangerous. French law requires evidence of having vaccinated in order to participate in various activities, including school."
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Washington DC to return to automatic metro trains

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about a month ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.washingtonpost.com/... After a crash some five years ago, automatic operation was abandoned. Now however replacement of 'faulty' modules means that moving the whole system on to automatic operation can happen.

One quote is depressing: 'And because trains regularly lurch to a halt a few feet short of where they should be at platforms, Metrorail riders have grown accustomed to hearing an announcement while they’re waiting to board: “Stand clear. Train moving forward.” WTF. That never happens on the London underground with human operators? What's wrong with American drivers?"
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J P Morgan and 'four other banks' subjected to 'sophisticated' cyber attack

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about 2 months ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.independent.co.uk/n...
The quality of the attack, which appears to have led to 'gigabytes' of data being lost, is raising the prospect of a state being the source. The present culprit suggested is Russia... why the assumption it's not China — just because China isn't invading the Ukraine at the moment?"
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UK prisons ministry fined for lack of encryption at prisons

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about 2 months ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.theguardian.com/soc... reports that the UK Information Commissioner has levied a fine of £180,000 on the Ministry of Justice for their failure to encrypt the data held on external hard drives at prisons. The fine is nominal — one part of government fining another is rather pointless, but it does show that there's a little bit of accountability. Of course it's interesting to consider the dangers of this hopefully old way of storing backups; but the question of whether we do a lot better now is quite pointed."
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NSA knew about destruction of the Guardian's data

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about 4 months ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "As people may remember, in a piece of theatre worth of Monty Python staff from GCHQ destroyed discs and computers at the London HQ of the Guardian. http://www.theguardian.com/uk-... As anyone with an ounce of sense knew, all the data was safely elsewhere as well. Now it appear that the NSA leadership was enthusiastic about this — which indicates how out of touch they are"
Link to Original Source
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Aircraft disappear from European air traffic control radar

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about 5 months ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "Over the course of a month some 13 aircraft at high altitude disappeared from the screens according to http://www.independent.co.uk/n... The article quotes 'unnamed experts' that 'interference between the aircrafts' transponders and ground control was apparently to blame'. Really?"
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NSA claims its systems are too complex to obey the law

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about 5 months ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.washingtonpost.com/...
Just when you thought it couldn't get any more unlikely, the NSA throws a dozy. This of course implies that they have no backup system — or at least that the backup are not held for long. So that means that a successful virus, one that blanked without making obviously deleted, getting into their systems would destroy ALL their data. Interesting..."
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Google discriminates in favour of Asian employees - or what?

Bruce66423 Bruce66423 writes  |  about 5 months ago

Bruce66423 (1678196) writes "http://www.theguardian.com/tec...
The Guardian — a left wing newspaper — has a headline to this article that focuses on the absence of women and especially blacks. But given the 30% Asian headcount, it's dubious this is a function of discrimination against blacks, but that's how the left likes to portray it.

It's easy when you know how to spot the biases..."

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