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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

Darinbob Re:Slashdot, Stop Spinning the GamerGate Content (494 comments)

If SJW is vile, then what about what they fight against? Sending death threats to women who "dare" to play games or create games, that's ok? Oh one of them slept with a journalist, something evil of course that men would never ever do.

What about the neutral stand that should say treat others with respect, accept outsiders into your circles, don't create a hostile environment. Face it, there positively without any doubt is a vile and disgusting segment of gamer culture, but it gets defended because it's part of the private club.

yesterday
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

Darinbob Re:Slashdot, Stop Spinning the GamerGate Content (494 comments)

It sounds like a typical new style troll behavior. Anyone entering the conversation that you don't like, you then accuse of knowing nothing and telling them to stay out of it. If you're not in their peer group than they honestly want you to just go away. You're not in fight club so you're not allowed to have an opinion about it.

It's an attitude that seems to indicate that they are trying to protect their private enclave and are worried that it's being dismantled. Possibly also an attitude that if you don't agree with them then you must agree with their enemies.

yesterday
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The Inevitable Death of the Internet Troll

Darinbob Re:"Social justice warriors" are the ultimate trol (494 comments)

And yet, anyone who says "treat women like people" gets labelled an SJW. The term is meaningless, saying "SJW" is about as irrelevant's and Rush's "feminazi", in that it riles up the haters but makes everyone else roll their eyes.

yesterday
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Will Fiber-To-the-Home Create a New Digital Divide?

Darinbob Re:No. (282 comments)

10mbps is good. A lot of people in the US have no access to anything that fast without subscribing to the local cable monopoly (if their local cable monopoly even provides that speed of internet). I get 12mbps for $50. I think it's a bit overpriced myself. Part of the "digital divide" is not just access to internet but the cost of it.

Ie, if the local cablopoly offers 48mbps for $80 a month, why not offer 12mbps for $20, 1/4 the speed/bandwidth for 1/4 the cost, then it's only a little more expensive than dialup and vastly more affordable for most people.

yesterday
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Will Fiber-To-the-Home Create a New Digital Divide?

Darinbob Re:Why South Korea and Japan can do it and USA can (282 comments)

Smaller towns may not have more expensive internet, but they have less of it. More small town residents still use dialup, or have no choice other than poor quality cable. If you want good internet in the US you will find it very often in the largest cities but not in the small towns or rural areas.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:Not "bricked" (661 comments)

Well, that is indeed new since I posted. Glad someone went out to get actual evidence instead of just raging without it.
However, where'd that source code come from, I've wanted to look at it in the past?

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

I read the initial reports. None of them report back the results of sniffing the USB bus. Instead it sounds like a bunch of Arduino owners complaining that some boards are broken. Now granted, the driver *did* screw up those boards, but I haven't seen evidence that this was malicious as opposed to a side effect, instead it's just circumstantial evidence (ie, why a new driver now when nothing has really changed in the FTDI world).

If someone wants to sue, and all those hobbyists sure sounded like they wanted to sue, then there should be actual evidence of malfeasance.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

I didn't say power hungry, but... Can you do everything you need for ethernet and uart? Baud rates, cts/rts, full/half duplex, 10/100/1g, things like that? If CDC can do those two classes of devices then why didn't anyone ever use it?

I got a CDC driver once from an OS vendor when we asked for an ethernet adapter driver (it was crap, but the vendor was crap so not CDC's fault, but the vendor got our money). Did not find any device that used CDC for this at the time except cable modems. Maybe there are more of these things today though (I see lots of usb-wifi adapters, not sure if they use CDC).

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:The good news (661 comments)

It's generally a bad idea to buy crap at Fry's and assume it's going to work well. When I needed a real FTDI based dongle that I could recommend to customers, I grabbed a handful of varieties from Fry's then tested each one to determine which had FTDI versus other things like prolific, cypress, etc.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:The good news (661 comments)

I understand FTDI very well. They're used all over the place, not just on toy arduinos.

Programmable PIDs is a standard feature of FTDI chips, one reason a lot of people like to use them so that they can have their own ID so that their driver can recognize it (ie, I see a lot of openocd drivers use FTDI for this purpose). FTDI paid money to get a VID, then they can use whatever PIDs they want after that.

It absolutely is possible to accidentally screw things up by thinking you have a real part which then responds in a different way (ie, its eeprom layout is different from the real part).

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

FTDI has always had a command sequence for reprogramming parts of the eeprom, specifically to change PID.
If the eeprom layout is different on the counterfeit devices than on real FTDI parts, then...? If the driver thinks it is changing a more innocuous location it would screw things up.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

It's a really lousy standard though. It does not do a good job of supporting an ethernet bridge or a UART bridge. It's possible to adapt it this way though however nothing actually supported it that I could ever find except for some cable modems, so everyone has a proprietary protocol instead. I suspect the reason is because CDC is complex enough that it's difficult to implement efficiently on a tiny hub-powered device.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:Not "bricked" (661 comments)

The evidence is that the PID was changed, but there is no evidence that this was done intentionally versus it being a bug in the counterfeit chip. Sure, it *may* be FTDI's fault, but so far eevblog is instead assuming FTDI is at fault without evidence and is chock full of "me too!" posters rather than people patiently sitting down and examining what the new driver change is actually doing.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

It may be that the driver unintentionally bricks the device. So far there's no direct evidence of hostile intent here. Ie, the PID changed, but in many devices this is just a region of memory right next to other chip parameters, so it's not that difficult to imagine there was some buffer overrun or other cause. Ie, the driver writes to location 128 but the eeprom on the counterfeit device wraps around to location 0.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:The good news (661 comments)

There are a lot of assumptions that FTDI did this intentionally. However I read that long long thread but never saw any direct evidence of intent to do harm. Instead, users see that the PID changed to 0 and immediately jump to the conclusion that it was done intentionally.

Now that may indeed be true, FTDI may have sent an ordinary command to change PID. However it may also be the case that the counterfeit device has a bug that was exposed with a new FTDI driver (buffer overflow causing the PID field to be overwritten perhaps). But we do not know because no one has shown any logs of the USB acitivity to show what is happening. Instead, they instantly blame FTDI.

Ie, smoking gun would be to see an exchange where the driver first detects the counterfeit and then sends the known set of commands to change the PID (FTDI has a popular tool to do this intentionally).

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:The good news (661 comments)

And this is the part not discussed yet. People get a bricked device, they get mad, they blame FTDI, but they have no proof. Show the USB sniffing logs that prove intentional bricking, versus a cheap ass counterfeit device that locks up when configured in an unexpected way.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

Well you'd have to prove the devices were bricked on purpose. Given that large number of clones I don't think they have a solution that could brick them all. This probably just bricks one big counterfeiter, and it's possible it's bricked by accident.

In fact, bricking by accident sounds plausible given that many of these devices do the minimum work necessary to work with the popular drivers. If the drivers change the devices stop working. Even for things like USB mass storage where there's a real standard, most cheap manufacturers only do the minimum necessary to get them to work on the currently popular Windows versions, and ignore the 5% of their customers where the devices fail. Quality is a rarity in mass market USB devices.

yesterday
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FTDI Reportedly Bricking Devices Using Competitors' Chips.

Darinbob Re:On the other hand... (661 comments)

Problem is that all of this stuff on USB is using vendor-specific protocols. FTDI is the most popular because it is the most popular. Thus you don't have to hunt down obscure drivers, it works on Macs and Linux and BSD, you can find source code to implement your own driver just about anywhere, and so forth. For something plugged into a Windows PC you don't care, you just use the CD that came in the box with the serial adapter, but it becomes a much bigger problem if you're using an alternative device for a machine that can't just accept a Windows driver or you're writing an embedded system that needs to talk to it.

Overall it would be better if USB had just created a standard for this class of devices. Vendor specific drivers are a pain in the ass if you're not using Windows, and it's not just serial adapters, but things like ethernet adapters, printers, etc.

yesterday
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Xerox Alto Source Code Released To Public

Darinbob Re:Is it just me? (121 comments)

Hmm, I think I have a couple 9-track tapes up in a box in the rafters of my mother's garage. Was hoping to be able to read them back someday... I knew I should have stuck to punch cards.

2 days ago

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