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Inside Shenzen's Grey-Market iPhone Mall

DrYak Not survivor (53 comments)

Take TVs, for example. I have a Sears TV in storage from the '80s. The manual has circuit schematics, where to get replacements for the channel buttons, how to replace switches, what pots are used where. It was made so someone with basic soldering skills could at least maintain it. A new LED TV just gets chucked and you buy a new one, even though the problem could be a membrane contact that costs a penny.

First off, your Sears TV is suffering from "Survivor Bias" - it lasted that long for you Who knows how many thousands are sitting in landfills because they're broken? So no, you can't say "things were made better in the past because my XXX works today".

Read again, he's not saying that his Sears TV is better *because it still works*. It's not survivor bias.
He's saying:
- back then, a TV was expected to be repaired and came with all the necessary information to do a repair.
- nowadays, things are made much more difficult for any one wanting to repair: good luck finding the schematics of any modern LED TV.

2 days ago

Europeans Came From Three Ancestry Groupings

DrYak Teaching/Learning machanism (83 comments)

You can imagine 10 different sects popping up with different versions of the dietary rules. The ones that happened to align with health and reduced death would have an evolutionary advantage, and ultimately become dominant.

That's basically how teaching/learning mechanism on the whole did evolve. That's why lot of mammal have youngs observe the adult and copy behavious. That's why in some mammal species, the parent actively teach the young. That's why some mammals (humans, dogs, etc.) from very strictly hierarchical societal organisation, with the underling strongly following the alpha, etc.
That's also why memes work on the internet.

"Religion" itself, is just a side phenomenon, that happens to hi-jack this transmission of knowledge methode and packs together useful information ("Things to avoid eating not to get sick") with complete non-sensical mythology/legends. That all still gets perpetuated because "that what we've always been doing".

2 days ago

Torvalds: No Opinion On Systemd

DrYak Re:Are you even aware of SystemD works? (377 comments)

(Reliable process supervision which cannot be evaded,

cgroups existed before systemd.

the cgroups functionnality existed in the kernel but wasn't really used that much before.
systemd, with its tasks in setup/startup of things can handle the creation of jails during lauch when needed.
whereas current /etc/init.d/apache can't without fumbling of shell scripts.

sane handling of process stdout/stderr

Up to the init script.

And thus each script end up fucking things up in its own original and different way.

proper handling of dependencies at runtime

Already handled by several init systems.

None of which are the original sysvinit.
Either it's relying on LSB-extended script and a different core which starts the scripts. (Debian had a makefile based one)
Or it's an entirely new system anyway like upstart.

socket activation

We call it inetd.

Or cron if it's time-based activation. Or udev if it's hardware based activation. Etc.
Why do we need 83 different way to start some code ?!
Wasn't the whole point of Unix philosophy having one piece of software which concentrates into doing one thing and doing it well?
With systemd, setup/startup/stop/teardown responsibilities are concentrated with PID1 and it's helpers.
Before, you'd have the same concept spread into a dozen of different systems, each only doing part of that functionnality.

I like systemd, it makes my work easier on desktop, on server, on virtual machines, etc. and although it used to have hiccups when it was introduced before in opensuse, by now it has had the time to mature.
no need to bash it. if you don't like it, don't use it.
and perhaps the fact that it's slowly gaining popularity in lots of mainstream distro might be due not because systemd is "a spreading cancer" but because systemd is actually useful and solves real world problem

3 days ago

Torvalds: No Opinion On Systemd

DrYak Also concentrate it in 1 point. (377 comments)

You don't seem to understand how SystemD actually works. The PID 1 is relatively simple -- it uses all sorts of separate (i.e. non-PID 1) helper processes to do all the heavy and complicated lifting.

And another thing I like about systemd:
- it groups into 1 single project: 1 single task (starting-up/seting-up things) that was spread accross way too many different project before.

Before systemd:

Want to start a service during boot-up ? Put it into sysvinit. Except if it's a file system, then it goes into /etc/fstab. Or if it's not a *service* but like of an interface like your terminal that should go into inittab (Except on distribution which do THE EXACT SAME THING but in init.d anyway).
The thing which start is related to actual hardware? the you need to put it into hal, no way we replaced that with udev... except that a few distro put them any way in init.d and thus your hardware might not work when plugged after booting... unless you also duplicate some code into modprobe.conf's post-runs.
And what if conditions for your code to start isn't "boot-up" nor "plug-in" ?
Then put it into inted/tpcd if it's network triggered. Except for code that doesn't work there, because the service needs to be compiled to use libwrap to work this way. So then you'll have to run the service constantly and fumble around with ip filtering to enable/disable it on demand.
Or put it into cron if it's time triggered.
And you need to start a service and the periodically monitor it for failure, and restart and raise alert if it has failed? Well either use an entirely separate custom system like djbdns's daemontools. Or write your own monitoring solution by writing a ton of scripts which tap into all those different ways to start/stop stuff and hope that it works.

And don't get me started about initialising containers (limited fonctionnality, tons of script), brokering access rights around (not really used. lot of interface must run as root and drop privileges, or lot of interface must be world accessible), handling situation as missing configuration or drivers in a system that hasn't fully booted up to the point where the GUI works and the user can fix things from here (huge tons of scripting to achieve way to detect that Xorg is failing and to propose solution to fix drivers)

All this written in shell script which can have their own pitfalls, and every single system using a different syntax.

After systemd:
PID1 and its herd of helpers take care of setup/start/stop/teardown.
Want to do *something*? Write a systemd config file, and describe which trigger (boot, after another service has started, on network, by clock, on device plug, etc.) should start it.
You can even call legacy systems from within systemd (cron can be reimplemented as a systemd service that runs periodically and reads/executes crontab, etc.)

You can have an LXC that is quickly setup. In fact you can quickly create throw-away container to jail any service separately (systemd is the kind of infrastructure that can boot a dedicated LXC jail to run Skype into, with restriction correctly setup so that no hidden backdoor could spy on you).
You can have systemd handle brokering the necessary rights (to the point that plugin an USB stick and having the currently active user access to it isn't a nightmare anymore).

If anything the handling of setup/startup/stop/teardown WAS NOT "unixy" before, it was "have 384 different programme which all do a different part of one single task in subtly different ways".

3 days ago

Commander Keen: Keen Dreams Source Code Released

DrYak fundamentally different (72 comments)

They are fundamentally different.

On one side you have turn-by-turn games, that progress in fixed steps, and thus simply paint the game field by putting varied wall graphics at exact predefined places.
It's really the discrete position on the map and cardinal headings that are specific,
(That's what you get in most classical RPG).
Could very easily be done back then with a few lines of code. The biggest chunk of work came from the *art* to have a big enough choice of wall to draw to make an interesting world (because it's mostly static, you'll be spending a lot of time at the same, and need something nice to look at).

Basically, the graphic engine has a fixed grid on screen and you put different sprites at said fixed grid positions.

On the other side you have game engines that try to have some actual notion of 3D built into them and allow smooth motion, with complete arbitrary position/headings.
(That's what you get in most FPS and real-time RPG like ultima).
There is really require more advanced coding. (With Origin more concentrating on making an imersive game, emphasis on beautiful graphics, and ID concentrating on make their engine fast and responsive, sacrificing any detail necessary for the sake of being able to make a fast paced game).

Basically, the graphic engine use geometric techniques like wolf's raycasting do determine what is visible where, and gives you total freedom (or at least tons more of freedom, as Carmack used limitation to beat Ultima in speed and fluidity).

From a basic visual composition, both categories have a first person perspective.
From a technical point of view, they are designed completely differently.

3 days ago

ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children

DrYak Point of comparison (950 comments)

Eventually, even the dumbest of the dumb will realize that it doesn't pay.

The dumbest of the dumb can only realise things are going badly when they can compare with things going well. To realise that the current government fucks everything up require to be able to realise that some things could be a little bit less fucked up, and the reason they are still so bad is the government's fault.

But if a country is shot down into dark ages, that gets much more difficult. See the reports about fugitive who have escaped extremely isolated dictature like North Korea. These people had probably the vague notion that perhaps here in the west, things are going a bit easier that in their country. (That's why they ran away in the first place)
But having so few information means that these people are just completely amazed by how far off their perception of the outside world has been, they knew that things could go in a different, better way. But they weren't able to realise that outside the totalitarian prison things are SO different.

3 days ago

5 Million Gmail Passwords Leaked, Google Says No Evidence Of Compromise

DrYak Rejected from Piratebay (203 comments)

Can you please upload the list to piratebay? I cant find it anywhere..!!

It was alread *rejected* from pirate bay.
Look around for "10 millions emails yandex mailru gmail w passwords 2014".
It might still be in some cache (that's where I found it).
And it starts poping up around on other tracker.

5 days ago

Artificial Spleen Removes Ebola, HIV Viruses and Toxins From Blood Using Magnets

DrYak Worst summary ever (105 comments)

Indeed, IB Times wins the record of the worst ever summary of microbiology subject.
(mixing virus and bacteria and toxins. And multiplication and dead cells. W.. T.. F.. )

(Also, the magnets have nothing to do with the removal. They are just the mecinal technique used to move the metal beads around. It's the manose-binding lecitin on them that hold the magic.
It's not "removing Viruses and bacteria using magnets" but "removing them using lecitins which happen to be moved around thanks to magnets").

The nature paper it self is good, and the method is typical technique used for extraction / purification (so the principle is solid).

The relative novelty of this method is that, instead of using an antibody as the binding agent (something that needs to be targeted specifically. In vertebrate they are part of the *adaptive* immunity : immunity that the body needs to train) this method uses manose binding lectins (something that isn't specific and bind to lots of targets: bacteria, virus, toxins, etc. In eukaryote, they are part of the *innate* immunity: immunity you are born with, you don't need to train. Your body will already produce lecitins against sugar patterns that aren't frequent in your body, even if you've never encountered them).

Thus, its able to purify and extract from a patient's blood bacteria, virus and toxin *THAT YOU DO NOT KNOW beforehand* (i.e.: anything that presents a pattern of sugar on the surface that isn't common in the body and for which they have the corresponding lecitin).
(Where classical extraction usually rely on antibodies targeting what you would like).

It's a bit equivalent to use coal to purify blood: coal will indiscriminately extract any big organic molecule without you needing to know it in advance and thus is a valuable tool in case of poisoning

5 days ago

Uber CEO: We'll Run Your Errands

DrYak Joking aside... (139 comments)

Joking aside, cycle riskshaw *are* present in the occident.
Specially after the rise of e-bikes, they are all the crase in European big cities.

5 days ago

Uber CEO: We'll Run Your Errands

DrYak Smaller vehicle (139 comments)

car emissions come out

Now, regarding the CO2 emissions, this might be solved by using a lighter vehicle for such errends.

To transport a few clients and their suit-cases to the airport, yes, a Uber driver needs a big-enough car.
To carry and drop around a few lunchboxes or pharmacy bags, a Smart car, a motorcycle scooter or an e-bike is pretty well enough.
(Also european cities tend to have separate lanes for bikes, meaning that the Uber driver can bring your delivery while avoiding traffic jams).

Now on the other side, there are health benefits in taking a break and walking a bit to pick up your food.

5 days ago

Uber CEO: We'll Run Your Errands

DrYak Pharmacies (139 comments)

In Europe and Asia there are already services like this.

Random example of such service in Geneva, Switzerland.

Pharmacies also operate their own such services (it's a popular job for high-schoolers to earn a few bucks).

Plus there is generally a delivery charge (or the restaurant gives up a cut). If each delivery is $5, zipping around from house to house would be a very good job if it's organized correctly.

And, unlike taxi service, can also be achieved with much lighter transportation vehicle (said drug-delivering high-schooler tend to do it with their motocycle scooter, e-bike, etc. also because it's easier to get a license for it) which overall can potentially lower emission and lower traffic in dense cities.
(well at least here in Europe where bikes, e-bikes, light motorcycle, etc. are very popular... in gaz-gurgling-SUV-land, well, YMMV).

5 days ago

Kickstarter's Problem: You Have To Make the Game Before You Ask For Money

DrYak Like Augie and the Green Knight (215 comments)

Try Kickstarting A Novel

You mean like this ?
This proves it possible although (as in the case of Star Citizen, and the likes) it got successfully funded because the book has big names behind it: Zach Wiener and Boulet.

I'm always amused when wanna-be novelists want people to give them $50,000 to write a novel in a year and discover that no one will give them money. The novel must be written first.

The book COULD be not finished yet:
- ...if it comes from a known guy. Popular author which has already shown able to produce good work. Can have successful kick-starter (I have this great idea that I want to write about, but my current publisher considers it a bit riské and doesn't want to shell out all the money for it).
Basically, any idea proposed by Terry Pratchet would get insta-funded, no matter how weird the premises.
- ...if it again follows the "prototype" rule. Wannabe authors writes "Chapter 1" on his free time and decides that he want to get paid to make the rest instead of having a main job and doing the book on the side. Wannabe authors makes chapter 1 available. Interested reader notice that current work is better quality than the crappy fan-fic which pollute the interweb and that the wannabe authors shows promising qualities. Book might get funded.
- slight variation of the above: a blogger who has shown very good and promising writing ability. Nothing from the book exist yet, the authors hasn't written a book before either, but has repeatedly shown to be able to output massive amount of written material with a good sense of humour.

Notice that, both situation could also work with a publisher. The only reason to go for Kickstarter is if for some reason no publisher is interested in the material it self (the project is REALLY weird, or the main theme is controversial, etc.)

The main difficulties won't be finding potential funds for Kickstart (as in fact, the main difficulty won't be finding a publisher neither, if the project isn't too much weird).
The main difficulty would be the lack of experience in handling a publishing project.

about a week ago

Amazon Is Killing Off Its Free P2P Money-Transfer Service WebPay On October 13

DrYak from *ANY* bitcoin exchange (34 comments)

You still need to get the money to and from the Bitcoin exchange. and from a bitcoin exchange. any bitcoin exchange.

Unlike Western Union that you mention (where you're basically stuck with only one single service provider per system), bitcoin leaves you with full freedom of choice of how to process the BTCs you received (coin processor, classical exchange, face-2-face meeting like localbitcoin, or simply keeping them in BTC form to re-use them (just watchout for currently big market fluctuations)).
And your choice of method at your end has no influence at what I chose at my end.
I, the client, could be using localbitcoin, and you the merchant could be using coinbase.

So Paypal, Western Union, or TFA's WebPay aren't directly comparable to bitcoin transactions.

SEPA are more similar: any SEPA-enabled bank in Europe can send amounts of money to any other SEPA bank.
I might be using a Swiss bank, your bank might be German. But both of us can pick any account in any bank as endpoint, as long as both banks support SEPA.
(And bitcoin are a bit faster than SEPA payment).

That's some improvement compared to the current situation of payments over internet, where you're basically forced to have a PayPal account, and have a MasterCard/Visa credit card, just because that's what most of the web is using.

about a week ago

5 Million Gmail Passwords Leaked, Google Says No Evidence Of Compromise

DrYak Reddit deletion (203 comments)

Reddit comments are being actively deleted.
Luckily, Google hasn't blacklisted the piratebay cache, yet.

checking.... Nope. None of my password is in there.
Will pass the file around for my friends to check theirs.

about two weeks ago

5 Million Gmail Passwords Leaked, Google Says No Evidence Of Compromise

DrYak Search engine (203 comments)

(and still is if you hunt around a bit - I found it without too much trouble).

What search engine were you using to locate it?
I'm sure it won't show up on google's search results.

(Or other pointers on how to get the list with passwords ?)

about two weeks ago

Using Wearable Tech To Track Gun Use

DrYak Precision (264 comments)

Microphone will pick up *a* bang, and thus will give an information when *some* gun was fired in the vicinity of the police.
It could be any gun on the scene, might by the police worker's own gun just as it could be the gun of the suspect/criminal.
(Though if there are multiple police worker, with multiple microphone, maybe one could triangulate a probable point of origin for the shot)

This wrist bands pick up vibration, and thus will give an information when *the gun held in the hand wearing the wrist band* has recoiled (and thus fired).
It's the exact gun in the hand of the police worker, very few doubt about it.

about two weeks ago

Paypal Jumps Into Bitcoin With Both Feet

DrYak Luck (134 comments)

I made 10,000% interest last year

And depending on the days you pick up, an investor might lose 4x of what money was invested.
You got lucky, others won't necessarily.

(I happen to have been lucky, too, only with a very small initial investment)

about two weeks ago

Paypal Jumps Into Bitcoin With Both Feet

DrYak Following the trail. (134 comments)

Regarding: 1, 2 and 3 :
I wasn't referring to matching single transaction/single keys and IP adresses, etc.

I was more referring that, if you want to use bitcoin in a meaningful way, you'll have to interract with the real world.
At some point, a real bitcoin user who isn't just playing with bitcoin for the sake of it, will buy an actual good.
Meaning that the seller will need to send the goods to an actual address.
At the other end of the chain, a would-be future bitcoin customer will need actual BTCs to do transaction. Nowaday it's not practical to mine any significant amount of BTCs using hardware available to the average customer. That means that a future bitcoin customer will need to acquire BTC, usually buying them from money (from an exchange or following a face-to-face meeting, etc.)

So no matter through how many public key the BTCs hops, a motivated enough investigator can always track indentities at both end of the chain:
- initial acquisition
- final spending.
sometime it's going to be the same identity (because it's the same person buying the BTCs and spending them after a few public key hops in-between), sometime it's a different identity (because somewhere along the chain, the BTCs 'changed hands' in a way that wasn't registered and matched to any address: for example 2 random people seeding direct donation to each-others address without an real-world interaction. Might happen several time along a chain).

If a really motivated investigator has enough resources (now we're speaking government-level), it is possible to follow tons of such "money trails". By comparing all of them together, it is possible to build whole nets of interactions, and you can match real identities. Even when 1 single money trails is uncertain (money might have switched hands along the track between known end-point), taking into accounts lots of other such money trails help lift uncertainty.

#4) You can use tumblers and coin exchanges to disconnect a given key from you and a transaction.

That's a good valid way to blur the trail.
In the block chains, what you'll see is thousand of user pouring money into the exchange (user funding their accounts) and thousand of users getting money back (user doing withdrawal from the exchange account). Everything in between happens "behind closed doors". The actual buy/sell actions aren't recorded in the blockchain, they happen in the exchange software's database. In the block chain there's just the exchange who's officially held amount of BTCs corresponds to the amount of BTCs currently being exchange by all users. More or less (see MtGox's heist when those numbers don't match anymore).

So trying to make sense of the complex network of interaction is *hard*, *really hard*. Well beyond the efforts used in simply "lifting uncertainty due to invisible switch of owners". Probably only a few poeple in Russia's FSB and US' NSA might have a slim chance of tracking a suspect. (And the tracking is more likely to rely on backdoors and trojans).

about two weeks ago

Paypal Jumps Into Bitcoin With Both Feet

DrYak Freeze (134 comments)

Joking aside:

at least bitcoin has on purpose been designed in such a way to make it impossible for a central authority to freeze an account, because on purpose there are no central authorities.
So that's a relatively small advantage over paypal.
(although, in both case, these system should be used EXCLUSIVELY for payments only. You should only use them to push money around, you should NOT use them to store money. Neither Paypal, nor the bitcoin network are banks. So if you got a big amount of money frozen, it's only your own fault).

about two weeks ago

Paypal Jumps Into Bitcoin With Both Feet

DrYak IS *NOT* ANONYMOUS (134 comments)

The entire security scheme of bitcoin is actually based on the exact opposite:
Not only is it not anonymous, it's public knowledge *BY DESIGN*.

Every single bitcoin transaction (or any other alt-coin for that matter) is publicly broadcast on the network.
Every single full node on the network is always aware of the transaction.

The point is that, thanks to this broadcast, every single bitcoin user can independently verify the transactions and (based on these checks) together all the node can agree who has how many coins left.
Unlike traditional banking (or a web payment like paypal, for exemple), there is no central authority that is the official referrer about account balances (with banks: the bank is the official authority about the content of its users' acounts. With webpayment: paypal is the official authority about the content of paypal accounts, etc. BUT with bitcoin, everyone can control the history of transactions by looking up the blockchain, there is no official central "Bitcoin, inc." that is in charge).

Due to this design (security by public broadcast) that means that no transaction is secret.

At best, it could be called "pseudonymous": the transaction are hidden behind public key hashes. (the civil/legal identity of parties of a transaction aren't directly written into the block chain. Instead the public key hashes are written).
so there's a low risk that an identity is immediately leaked, just by casual look of the blockchain.

It at least takes a conscious effort to track public keys accros the blockchain and follow the money train until an actual identity can be matched.
But that's completely possible and well within the capabilities of governments.

about two weeks ago



After ASUS, instant-on linux on HP and Dell

DrYak DrYak writes  |  more than 6 years ago

DrYak writes "Phoronix is reporting on DeviceVM's SplashTop popularity. In addition to ASUS (which started including it not only on all their motherboards but also on laptops — calling it Express Gate), other companies seem to be interested in this kind of technology. HP will be introducing a similar technology called Voodoo IOS Linux.

Details, however, have been short on this Voodoo IOS Linux.
tells Phoronix,

Representatives for DeviceVM have declined to comment whether Voodoo IOS is a re-branded version of SplashTop, but all signs are that it is.

Phoronix also reports that Dell is planning to introduce a similar technology :

Engadget has shared details surrounding the Dell E and E Slim. These notebooks are direct competition to the very popular ASUS Eee PCs. [...] The E and E Slim also ship with what Dell is calling "BlackTop" for providing an instant-on Linux solution. While BlackTop sounds quite similar to SplashTop, indications are that this is a separate solution from Dell.

Maybe, The Year Of The Linux Desktop still isn't there. But right after Asus' EEE PC has showed that this might potentially be The Year Of The Linux Laptop, maybe we are here witnessing the seeds of The Year Of The Linux BIOS too."

Link to Original Source

Valve's Source engine to be ported on Linux

DrYak DrYak writes  |  more than 6 years ago

DrYak writes "Phoronix has received informations confirming that Valve is indeed porting its very popular Source engine to the Linux platform. There have been rumors since last year that Valve may be serious about porting Source games to Linux after Valve Software began seeking a senior software engineer with the responsibility of porting Windows-based games to the Linux platform. (as mentioned recently on /.)
They also have confirmation that Postal III — which uses Valve's Source Engine — would be supported on Linux (as well as on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC, and Mac).

Until now compatibility layers such as Wine and CodeWeaver's CrossOver have been the only solution for Linux players, and Phoronix mentions that Valve's Orange Box compilation of Source-based games is among the top ranking vote for CrossOver, thus showing that there's indeed a market for Valve's game on Linux

Linux gamers worldwide start to rejoice."

Link to Original Source

DrYak DrYak writes  |  more than 7 years ago

DrYak writes "After the recent slashdot speculations about ATI/AMD promising to fix some of their problems on open-source operating systems, it might be interesting to remind that there is some community development of open-source drivers for Radeon graphic cards. nVidia isn't the only target to receive efforts such as the nouveau project : as stated by Phoronix in a recent article, ATI Has Open-Source Drivers Too.

Since late last year the open-source Linux community has been ecstatic about the growing progress made by the Nouveau developers. [...] With NVIDIA Corporation not providing hardware specifications, this driver is being written through reverse-engineering NVIDIA's binary display driver. While the developers of Nouveau are making great strides and this driver is taking shape, the open-source ATI driver must not be forgotten.
The article provides a quick overview of the various project concerning the Radeon family of graphics chips :

ATI Technologies had released specifications to the Radeon R200 (8500 to 9200) [...] For those graphics cards, there is an excellent stable and open-source driver built into X.Org...
Support for the Radeon R300 series had to be reverse-engineered [...] The R300 driver now is nearly complete for desktop users wishing to play older games or simply benefit from Beryl and Compiz...
Recently [...] there has been work on reverse-engineering ATI's R500 (Radeon X1000) series. There is no dummy driver available yet or even a Wiki page, but I have covered some of the progress made on my blog at [...] This driver is still in its infancy but in the coming months there should hopefully be some good news to report back. ...
Recently, the radeon driver project has started issuing an irregular development companion, similarly to the TiNDC."


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