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Ask Slashdot: Where Can You Get a Good 3-Button Mouse Today?

CaptQuark Re:Thrift store (415 comments)

More than that, my hand categorically rejects two button mice — the dangling ring finger causes me genuine physical discomfort.

I have a feeling you also missed this sentence. He is bemoaning the loss of the middle button as much for the form factor as for the additional features. The old three-button mice were designed to allow index-middle-ring fingers to rest on the mouse with the thumb and pinky around the edges. Everyone has a favorite mouse shape - ivory soap bar, ergonomic hockey puck, small and narrow, palm vertical, etc - his just happens to be the three-button mouse.

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yesterday
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Being Pestered By Drones? Buy a Drone-Hunting Drone

CaptQuark Re:Seems like jamming would be easier (151 comments)

Actually the DSM2 does use Spread Spectrum. It uses DSSS (Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum) centered around the two most open channels. Trying to jam the center frequency would only be effective until the data shifted into one of the sidelobes. https://www.spektrumrc.com/Tec...

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4 days ago
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Researchers Use Siri To Steal Data From iPhones

CaptQuark Questionable research (55 comments)

In their experiments, Mazurczy and Caviglione managed to use this method to exfiltrate data at a rate of 0.5 bytes per second. At this speed, it would take roughly 2 minutes to send a 16-digit payment card number to the attacker.

2 minutes? One byte every 2 seconds for 16 characters should be 32 seconds. Plus, since they can control the encoding, they could send card numbers using only a nibble, so they could send all 16 numbers in 16 seconds.

Either the original (non-posted) research showed ALL card information could be sent in 2 minutes, or they realized Siri communications are so short they would need multiple requests to get a full 30 seconds of sent audio. Sadly, the original information is not posted so the math discrepancy remains puzzling.

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about a week ago
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Being Pestered By Drones? Buy a Drone-Hunting Drone

CaptQuark Re:Seems like jamming would be easier (151 comments)

Don't forget that all RC systems operating in the 2.4GHz range use Spread Spectrum features specifically to prevent interference. The transmitter and receiver are "bound" together so the receiver can ignore all signals not coming from the bound transmitter.

Jamming a single frequency would only result in the loss of a few frames of control signals before the TX/RX would move on to the next frequency.

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about a week ago
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Being Pestered By Drones? Buy a Drone-Hunting Drone

CaptQuark Re:Solution looking for a problem (151 comments)

I'm not saying firing a 7.62 round into the air is without risk. But the chances of serious injury are very low.

Based on anecdotal evidence from Mythbusters testing, the determining factor seemed to be if the bullet maintains a stable spin. Once the bullet starts tumbling, it loses speed quickly and it becomes less damaging. http://mythbustersresults.com/...

Even shotgun pellets used in duck and pheasant hunting (Size 6 shot or less than 3mm) don't hurt when falling back to earth. I've been on a few pheasant hunts where hunters accidentally shoot upward toward another group of hunters and the falling shot does nothing more than sting when coming back down.

That said, shooting quadcopters with a shotgun is a TERRIBLE idea.

about a week ago
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'Be My Eyes' App Crowdsources Help For the Blind

CaptQuark Re:You Must Be New Here (66 comments)

I disagree that sighted testers are not helpful. I used to test our website for screen reader use and got to the point that I could just look at a website and tell it would be a horrible experience using a screen reader. Bad content included tables used for image slicing, dynamic content produced by javascript, no alt tags on important images, no navigational anchors to help skip repetitive headers on every page, anything with flash items, content hidden in external style sheets, etc.

It takes some extra work to produce a visually appealing page that a screen reader can easily read and navigate after the style sheets are ignored by Jaws. It requires careful planning to design a page with multiple columns (menu column on the left, main content in the middle, additional information on the right) and organizing it so a screen reader can skip to the main content without listening to menu choice after menu choice on every page but still looks appealing to sighted users after the style sheets are applied.

W3C guidelines don't tell you if common acronyms like URL, IANAL, CDMA, IMHO, or DMCA will be read letter by letter or pronounced as a word. Even little things like spacing or placement of periods inside or outside quoted material can cause the content to be spoken differently by JAWS. W3C page scanners will catch obvious mistakes like missing ALT tags and missing column headers, but having the designer actually listen to their page certainly improves it.

-- End of comment --

about two weeks ago
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The Making of a 1980s Dungeons & Dragons Module

CaptQuark I remember playing (59 comments)

I remember playing D&D back in the 80s. For me, it was soon replaced by video games.

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about a month ago
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Thunderbolt Rootkit Vector

CaptQuark Re:uh - by design? (163 comments)

begs the question...

"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means." ~Inigo Montoya

about 1 month ago
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Thunderbolt Rootkit Vector

CaptQuark Re:uh - by design? PROM ? (163 comments)

ROM -- Read Only Memory. As stated, data is stored during the manufacturing process. Non-changeable

PROM -- Programmable Read Only Memory. Stores data by burning fusible links inside the chip using a special programming station. Non-changeable for most practical purposes. You can't fix a burned link, but you can burn additional ones.

EPROM -- Erasable Programmable Read Only Memory. Data can be stored and then erased by exposing the chip to UV radiation. Chips of this type can be recognized by the opaque sticker covering the quartz window on the top of the chip. No UV sources are built into computer enclosures.

EEPROM -- Electrically Erasable Programmable Read Only Memory. The only type of ROM memory that can be reprogrammed inside a computer. Almost identical to FLASH memory.

about 1 month ago
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NASA 'Emails' a Socket Wrench To the ISS

CaptQuark Re:Plastic socket wrench? (152 comments)

I'll bet you any amount it won't break. This is a technology demonstration and proof of concept, not a stress-to-failure type test. The main goal is to upload the build file, print it, then return it to earth to compare against the reference model. Some of the questions they might be working to answer are: Do the extrusion heads work the same way in microgravity? Do micro-bubbles form in the material without gravity to collapse them? Do wisps of hot filament drift around the build chamber without gravity to control them?

Imagine turning an earth-bound 3D printer upside down and printing an object. What other issues does gravity alleviate that we don't know about?

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about a month ago
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Seattle Police Held Hackathon To Redact Footage From Body Cameras

CaptQuark Re:Is the US government really so dysfunctional (93 comments)

If you read the article, you would find this issue is related to Washington State's Public Records Act. It has nothing to do with any federal law.

[insert your own snappy rejoinder about dysfunctional posters here]

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about a month ago
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Seattle Police Held Hackathon To Redact Footage From Body Cameras

CaptQuark Re:Who will guard the guardians? (93 comments)

The Seattle Police are working to comply with Washington State Public Records Act, not the federal Freedom of Information Act. Just as states have different versions of single-party or all-party recording consent, the Washington State law requires that certain public records be made available upon request, with the restrictions noted in the story. The Seattle Police Department currently has 350+ Terabyes of archived video subject to Public Records requests.

From the GeekWire article:

However, Seattle Police officials also admitted that about 90 percent of the video officers create probably needs no redaction at all. That’s because members of the public have no right to expect privacy in their interactions with police, unless they are juveniles or a witness or victim whose safety might be at risk if their identity is known.

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about a month ago
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New Compilation of Banned Chinese Search-Terms Reveals Curiosities

CaptQuark Re:How about a list for Australia ... (43 comments)

Where do you live that makes you think your access to information is being censored? Do you click on links and find the destination is blocked? Do people mention news articles that you can't access?

China has a history of blocking many sites they deem inappropriate for people to visit. You think the list of words that the country with the (now) largest economy in the world DOESN'T have an impact on you?

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You think that's air you're breathing now? Hmph..

about a month and a half ago
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Monochromatic Light As a Species-selective Insecticide

CaptQuark Re:BONG! (44 comments)

Dude, are you sure the pain was from the grow lights and not from what you were growing? That stuff has a tendency to make ANY bright light painful. (wink)

about a month and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Convincing My Company To Stop Using Passwords?

CaptQuark Re:Every 30 days. (247 comments)

All government agencies are transitioning to Smart Card based two-factor authentication. The Common Access Card (CAC) used by the military is one type of smart card that is supported by many other agencies. It eliminates the need for remembering passwords, can't be used if stolen, locks itself if the incorrect PIN is attempted, supports proximity-based readers like door locks, and contains certificates for encrypting email and digital signatures.

With the number of government agencies purchasing these cards, the per card cost is coming down quickly.

about 2 months ago
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Every Weapon, Armored Truck, and Plane the Pentagon Gave To Local Police

CaptQuark Re:$1000 Flashlights? (191 comments)

Only if you want to pay that much. I got a 2-pack 500 lumen flashlight set from Costco for $20 with coupon.

Costco also had a 2-pack 1500 lumen set for $69 until they sold out in two days.

http://www.costco.com/Duracell...

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about 2 months ago
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Debian Forked Over Systemd

CaptQuark Re:Wow... (647 comments)

rehash never needs any arguments. Check your man page.

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about 2 months ago
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Debian Forked Over Systemd

CaptQuark Re:What a horrible name (647 comments)

Relying on a pronunciation of a made up word is not a good idea.

Very true. Look at how many people slaughter "Linux".

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about 2 months ago
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Debian Forked Over Systemd

CaptQuark Re:Okay, this is a great idea (647 comments)

Uh... NoCSS? If the top and bottom panes move for you then you must have CSS turned off. The two sections are appropriately named "navbar-fixed-top" and "navbar-fixed-bottom" so they should not move by design. I'm not suggesting it is a good design, but to each his own.

I agree the text is way too large for viewing on a monitor, but a few clicks of the scrollwheel with the Ctrl key fixes that. Or if you prefer to keep your hands on the keyboard, Ctrl+- three times brings the font down to an acceptable size. As to why they would pick a 40px font size, that is a mystery.

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about 2 months ago

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