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Comments

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Rover Finds Ancient Streambed On Martian Surface

Caerdwyn Re:Rocks (180 comments)

I believe those meatbags are commonly referred to as: "Ugly bags of mostly water"

As long as you don't ask about the glowy bits. Or the probe code.

about 2 years ago
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Trouble At OnLive

Caerdwyn Re:Still was going to have a real tough time (142 comments)

Where do I begin...

With OnLive, you could play Crysis at 30fps on medium settings at 720p on a Celeron-equipped netbook with an Intel GMA950. So no, you were not getting the kind of thing integrated video can offer.

Latency depends entirely upon the quality of the network link between you and the data center. OnLive was not intended for people in Yellowknife or Cheyenne or the Azores; it was for people in densely-populated well-wired urban areas in which they had data centers. That's a lot of people, but no, it's not everyone, nor is there any sort of requirement that it be for everyone. Part of the setup was a latency/bandwidth test that you were supposed to run before you signed up. And if your ISP oversubscribed your last-mile connection to the point where you couldn't use it between 7pm and 10pm... yeah, that's a problem, but it's not universal, and it's not anything OnLive could do anything about, any more than Ford is responsible for whether on not your street has potholes. I suggest beating your ISP over the head with a lead pipe in such cases.

Yes, there's a loss of single-pixel detail. It's not perfect, and there is no requirement that it be so (any more that there is a requirement that lossy audio be forbidden for sale). Expectations must be reasonable (as must expectation-setting).

OnLive's video was tuned for 4 to 6 mbps with less than 30ms of latency, with low packet loss (less than 1%). Under such circumstances, it did well. When network conditions deteriorated, it had some automatic fallbacks to keep the framerate above 30fps for as long as possible; it would remain at least usable down to 2.5mbps/5% loss, though it wasn't pretty under those conditions. It was far, far more than glorified RDP and VNC (it wasn't a video memory buffer; the hardware captured and processed the digital video stream from a DVI interface and the digital audio stream as taken from SPDIF outputs, and injected control with a virtual USB HID). It was good tech. Low latency was achieved by essentially running unbuffered and a couple of other things that I'm not sure whether I could talk about yet.

But as I mentioned earlier, the real failure was the inability to make the deals with third parties that would turn that tech into something worth paying for.

more than 2 years ago
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Trouble At OnLive

Caerdwyn Re:It's true (142 comments)

Tell me about it, he refused to use mouthwash or brush his tooth in-between.

more than 2 years ago
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Trouble At OnLive

Caerdwyn Re:It's true (142 comments)

I'm an ex-employee, too. Weren't you the guy who used to suck my dick in the restrooms every day at about noon?

No, that was some troll from Slashdot.

more than 2 years ago
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Trouble At OnLive

Caerdwyn It's true (142 comments)

Ex-Onlive employee here (I left a couple of years ago). I've been hearing from my OnLive friends... yup. Big big layoff. Hire these people if you see 'em, folks, they're good workers who know their stuff and have a work ethic.

The tech works, and has been fine for almost three years now; I was doing all my gaming through OnLive when I worked there, and was about 50 miles form the data center. The trouble as I see it is the same that I saw back when I left: it ceased being a technology play when it worked well enough, and turned into a business development play. They needed to:

  • sign the majority of the major publishers
  • get them to release new titles simultaneously with physical retail
  • convince the publishers to charge somewhat less than physical retail and
  • form revenue-sharing-based transit agreements and peering deals with major ISPs to keep OnLive traffic out of the bandwidth caps

Unfortunately, none of the biz dev plays were driven to success.

Tech is easy. Business is hard. CUtting deals is hardest of all.

more than 2 years ago
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Anonymous Claims To Have Hacked Sony PSN Again

Caerdwyn Re:Screw you, anonymous! (239 comments)

Thanking Anonymous for stealing my credit card info to demonstrate Sony's/Stratfor's/whatever's poor IT practices is akin to thanking an arsonist for burning down my house to demonstrate that it's flammable.

There's not a shred of morality or good intention in Anonymous. None. They're vandals and thieves who never got over resenting authority figures when they were 13. Having the ability to run Metasploit against a video game host doesn't change the basic mindset.

more than 2 years ago
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Anonymous Claims To Have Hacked Sony PSN Again

Caerdwyn Re:Why do people still use Sony (239 comments)

So to punish Sony for hurting their customers, Anonymous hurts Sony customers. But Anonymous is stealing credit card info for YOUR benefit!

Good going, guys. Way to take the moral high road and to convince the public to support you. What's next, scrambling blood types in breached medical records databases to teach insurance companies a lesson with dead patients, so you can portray yourselves as Robin Hoods with a pile of bodies?

more than 2 years ago
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Modest Proposal For Stopping Hackers: Get Them Girlfriends

Caerdwyn Wait, what? (566 comments)

Hackers going to jail? Since when?

A few high-profile media darlings compared to thousands of breaches per day... no. Hackers aren't going to jail. You're still orders of magnitude more likely to do jail time for shoplifting a candy bar than for exposing a few hundred thousand people to identity theft or for selling a few thousand credit card numbers or engaging in online extortion.

This country has fucked-up priorities.

more than 2 years ago
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Criminals Distribute Infected USB Sticks In Parking Lot

Caerdwyn Old trick. (298 comments)

This is a time-honored way of targeting a particular company. It sounds expensive, but if your motivation is commercial or governmental *coughcoughstux* it's extremely cheap compared to the alternatives (bribery, breaking-and-entering, rubber-hose cryptography). It's also a great way of finding out whether your own organization is aware of malware trouble; this technique is commonly used as part of security audits performed by companies hired to find out how good your company really is.

A company I worked for a few years ago hired a security auditing firm to check up on ourselves (only a few people were told, and we were told to keep quiet to ensure that our day-to-day practices were tested, not our "crap, someone's checking!" performance). They were unable to penetrate the network from the outside (including wirelessly) or socially engineer their way past reception or weasel out a password, but they got in via the USB-stick-in-the-parking-lot method. They told us afterwards that this is an extremely effective technique, as primate curiosity is almost unstoppable.

more than 2 years ago
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Does RIM's "Huge Loss" Signal Wider Handset Market Deterioration?

Caerdwyn Re:Get an amateur radio license (278 comments)

But you DO need FCC approval on a per-device level to transmit in the cellular spectrum. And unlike in ham radio in which all you get for unlicensed transmissions is a stern lecture from a cranky old man (the reality is that the FCC only acts on the very worst transgressions in the ham band), if you transmit on cellular frequencies without an approved device, the FCC will be all over your ass. Because of the potential for serious harmful disruption; you might even end up on the DHS radar and discover first-hand how paper-thin the veneer of "civil rights" actually is. Disabling a portion of a city's phone infrastructure is just the kind of thing that Really Bad People would love to do.

Cellular spectrum isn't Citizen's Band. Homebrew will land your ass in front of a judge.

Also, there are serious restrictions on what you can and cannot do and say on the ham bands. You cannot engage in work-related topics (that's what commercial bands are for). You are not allowed anonymity; your callsign has to be given, and it's in a publicly searchable database. You are forbidden to encrypt your traffic (digital or otherwise), or even engage in coded speech. You're not supposed to swear. You MUST get out of the way of emergency traffic. And nobody needs a warrant to listen in or record your conversations.

Ham radio is great fun and is useful in regional emergencies like Hurricane Katrina, but is in no way a substitute for a telephone (socially, technologically, or legally).

Now, if someone came up with a user-configurable platform with an approved radio and approved locked-down radio driver code (which is separate from OS code, as people who write jailbreaking software know), there might be a very small niche market for that. But it's only a niche; don't fool yourselves otherwise. Slashdotters are not the center of the world, do not drive social or legal policy, and for that we should all count ourselves lucky.

more than 2 years ago
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Iran Claims New Cyber Attack On Its Nuclear Plants, Blames US and Allies

Caerdwyn Dear Princess Ahmadinejad, (289 comments)

Dear Princess Ahmadinejad,

Non-proliferation, "bonus" software, or Tomahawks. Choose no less than one.

Your faithful adversary,
The Non-Jihadist World

more than 2 years ago
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Google Touts Worker Tracking As Own CEO Goes MIA

Caerdwyn Growth industry (272 comments)

Think of all the economic activity this will generate: Blackmail - "Hey, Mr. CEO, I wonder if your wife knows you were at that leather bar at 10:40pm last night."
Industrial espionage - "The CEO was tracked to the headquarters of a certain component supplier. Could this mean an entry into a certain hardware market?"
Kidnapping - no. That's not even close to a joke. It happens.
Assault - "Today, protesters hounding a CEO turned violent as they cornered him at a local coffee shop..."

Yeah, I think it's best for everyone involved that it doesn't happen. There are legitimate uses for position-tracking (delivery truck driver, armored car services, school busses, etc.), but if you're not in a position which explicitly requires such tracking, no fucking way.

And despite all the knee-jerk CEO-hate that college freshman have, no, it's not okay to force physical risk and privacy invasion onto someone else, even IF they are a big bad scary exploiting evil-because-he-has-money-and-you-don't CEO. This is why we don't let children make decisions for others.

more than 2 years ago
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Kaspersky Says Lack of Digital Voting Will Be Democracy's Downfall

Caerdwyn How to Vote (388 comments)

Which candidate promises to give me more tax money taken from other people?

a) BreadAndCircuses-crat
b) CircusesAndBread-lican
c) CrankyOldCoot-itarian (never happen)

Votes are bought and sold every day. How do you think the US deficit got as high as it has? Greek foreign debt? Spanish public debt? Voters, when offered a chance to tax anyone except themselves, do so.

about 2 years ago
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Missing Matter, Parallel Universes?

Caerdwyn Re:"WE are the Goatse Universe." (154 comments)

Baryonic matter ("normal" matter from our perspective) is the minority.

WE are the Goatse Universe.

NOOOOOOOoooo ... oh, wait, that's not what you said. Phew.

Well, goatse IS in our universe... so, yeah, kinda.

about 2 years ago
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Women's Enrollment In Computer Science Correlates Negatively With Net Access

Caerdwyn Which companies? (314 comments)

While I'm sure the data quoted is accurate, I'm not seeing it here locally. In my group (20 of us, QA + development product group in a networking products company with about 2,000 employees), 9 are female, and an eyeball-survey says that this is about normal for the rest of the engineering organization. Same for candidates whom I interview; about half are female.

Where are all these all-male companies? Could other tech-oriented industries (defense, etc.) be getting lumped in with Silicon Valley style companies, and if so, is that really an accurate assessment?

more than 2 years ago
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Missing Matter, Parallel Universes?

Caerdwyn Re:Mirror Universe? (154 comments)

Baryonic matter ("normal" matter from our perspective) is the minority.

WE are the Goatee Universe.

more than 2 years ago
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Monsanto May Have To Repay 10 Years of GM Soya Royalties In Brazil

Caerdwyn Re:Broken business model. (377 comments)

So Monsanto are they only people that could do that?

In the past seed lines were created by government agriculture programs I see no reason why that could not be the case today.

Brazil could continue to use these products without paying, when you have your own country you can do stuff like that.

So where are the new crops coming from? Why is Monsanto winning? All politics aside, could it be because they're better at such research than government-funded programs because (unlike government research) they are incentivized to work harder and produce results? Government-funded research has little incentive to push hard, and I would actually argue has an incentive not to (gotta keep the government dollars flowing, and successfully finishing a project STOPS the income... while with private research, successfully finishing the project STARTS the income).

Monsanto might not be the only people capable of producing such crops, but right now, they're just about the only people who ARE producing such crops. If people have a problem with that, the solution isn't to cripple Monsanto. It's for everyone else to improve, rather than just suck public research dollars. You're paid to perform.

more than 2 years ago
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Monsanto May Have To Repay 10 Years of GM Soya Royalties In Brazil

Caerdwyn Re:Broken business model. (377 comments)

In which case the incentive to develop pest-resistant, high-yield and other modified crops that allow supporting 7+ billion people goes away. Monsanto isn't a charity, and would be absolutely within their rights to stop allowing Brazil to use their products. Yield per acre goes down, food prices go up, and the very poorest starve. Bottom line: cash-grabbing research companies with a shrill "big corporations bad! Seizure of money good!" results in zero reason to try to develop new crops or medicines. Does anybody stop to think about the consequences of attacking pharmaceutical and food companies and making cash grabs like this?

But who cares about THAT? It's only equatorial brown-skinned people who will feel the worst of it, and they don't count for anything at all, right, privileged white-boy apologists? Fuck the brown people, we gotta get our SUE on, because that makes mama's-boy college kids feel powerful! We're not the ones who are going to go hungry.

more than 2 years ago
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US Security Services May 'Have Moles Within Microsoft,' Says Researcher

Caerdwyn Meaningless. (228 comments)

1. DUH
2. "May have". Yeah, that's news. Meaningless. They "may not have" too. Is there something specific somebody has to say, with something to back it up other than a closed circle of "may have"?
3. Speculation is fact on Slashdot. This warrants an article, why? Is there NEWS here, or are we going to see "space aliens MAY HAVE dressed up like call-boys and 'anally probed' the editorial staff"?

Wankers.

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

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Proposal: Cover highways with a solar panel roof

Caerdwyn Caerdwyn writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Caerdwyn (829058) writes "An interesting proposal: build a miles-long roof over urban highways made of solar panels. The idea is to make use of otherwise "lost" area to generate power locally. This addresses some of the traditional concerns of large-scale solar projects, specifically their ecological impact if placed out it deserts, losses due to long transmission lines, and dealing with the high cost of land if the project is within the city it serves. Part of this would, of course, have to be a construction methodology which would not make traffic problems worse, as well as what reflections off the panels might do, but at the least this is an interest thought-experiment."
Link to Original Source
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CDN optimizing HTML on the fly

Caerdwyn Caerdwyn writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Caerdwyn (829058) writes "Cotendo, which is a content distribution network, has taken to altering HTML as it passes through their CDN to optimize web pages for faster rendering. This is essentially a repackaging of the Apache mod mod_pagespeed (from Google), with the critical difference being that the rewriting of HTML occurs inline rather than at the web server. We all know that well-written HTML can result in much better rendering of whatever your content is; the questions are "will this automatic rewriting cause other problems, i.e. browser quirks" and "assuming that only the web pages of Cotendo's customers are altered, are there nonetheless potential legal troubles with someone rewriting HTML before delivery to a browser"?"
Link to Original Source

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