Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



"ExamSoft" Bar Exam Software Fails Law Grads

Etherwalk Re:Lockdown (97 comments)

Besides handling the uploading of completed exam questions, ExamSoft locks down the computer on which it runs, so Wikipedia is not an option.

Yeah, that'll work, because nobody has internet capable cellphones, secondary machines or even Virtual Machines.

It doesn't need to be perfect, just decent enough to make it harder to cheat. Things like the consequences of getting caught also apply--law is a highly regulated profession, and getting caught would keep a person from ever becoming a lawyer. Failing the bar exam generally just means you retake it six months later and study more.

Cellphones are not permitted in the exam room; so are second computers; and I believe the software is designed not to run on at least some class of virtual machines.


Chinese Government Probes Microsoft For Breaches of Monopoly Law

Etherwalk Security (105 comments)

This is like being accused of overeating by the world's biggest fat man.

Yes, it is. It is about security rather than monopoly. Both discouraging Chinese citizens from using Microsoft (this lets state media trash talk them for a little while) and trying to get their hands on source code or other references to flaws in the OS.


"ExamSoft" Bar Exam Software Fails Law Grads

Etherwalk Wrong - bad summary (97 comments)

Students weren't unable to complete exams; they were unable to upload the exams, which you need to do after you get home (or to a hotel) after the exam. It gets stores on your laptop (presumably with public key encryption) in the meantime. Examsoft's servers ran at least 50% slower than they had in the past; the company hasn't announced why.

The only trick is that some jurisdictions required you to upload the exam within a few hours, so Examsoft had to contact those jurisdictions and get them to extend the deadlines.

The only other issue is stress. If it takes law students a lot of time to deal with Examsoft's incompetence and they have to take day 2 of the exam the next day, people who needed just another hour of studying (Not many where an hour would make a difference, but there will be some who just barely fail)... the result, predictably, will be lawsuits.


Hackers Plundered Israeli Defense Firms That Built 'Iron Dome' Missile Defense

Etherwalk Meh. (182 comments)

China is in a state of de facto war with every military R&D project in the world. Any defense contractor not locked down six ways from Sunday should be punished (or they should get a bonus for best practices.)

2 days ago

In France, Most Comments on Gaza Conflict Yanked From Mainstream News Sites

Etherwalk Censorship! (511 comments)

Won't someone think of the racists?

Also, it doesn't say they don't take down racist comments against Palestinians.

5 days ago

The Secret Government Rulebook For Labeling You a Terrorist

Etherwalk Constitutional (242 comments)

Sounds like security clearance language. That is an odd sieve to use.

Not at all. "Reasonable suspicion" is legal language, which is why they use it in both contexts. It is the minimum amount of information that a police officer (or other federal agent) can have to stop you on the street, even if they lack a warrant, without violating the Constitution. It basically means they have to point to specific facts that under the circumstances suggest you may be up to something criminal. (They don't have to identify those facts to you when they stop you, necessarily, but they can make a reasonable inquiry to dispel their suspicion.) Otherwise they have violated the Constitution, which doesn't help you a lot sometimes, but still sometimes results in either evidence they find being excluded or you being able to sue them.

Whether it should be the standard here is a different question, but the government wants it to be because it's a pretty low standard.

about a week ago

Obama Administration Says the World's Servers Are Ours

Etherwalk Re:Discoverable (749 comments)

So Microsoft employees must choose between flying to Ireland, breaking the law and facing possible arrest or losing the case in the US. They could ask their Irish subsidiary for the data but I somehow doubt any of those people will be willing to go to jail to satisfy a US court that has no jurisdiction over them.

There is a question in "breaking the law and facing possible arrest[.]" First, there has been no indication that Irish laws will be broken. Second, there is no reason to believe there would be an arrest if they were broken by a corporation acting in good faith to comply with the laws of another country. Third, most laws around data storage privacy have an exception for disclosure pursuant to a valid court order or warrant. Fourth, it is a multibillion dollar company more likely to face a fine than to have its employees arrested. Fifth, nobody needs to *fly to ireland* unless Microsoft wants them too--MSFT has people there. And flying to Ireland is not a big deal for an employee of a multibillion dollar corporation.

The messed up thing here is *NOT* requiring MSFT to turn over their data where electrons are located in Dublin. It's the scope of material they can get without a showing of probable cause under the 1986 law that determines privacy for email.

Yes. 1986.

about two weeks ago

UN Report Finds NSA Mass Surveillance Likely Violated Human Rights

Etherwalk No (261 comments)

does that mean I'm no longer an extremist for demanding my Constitutional rights be respected?


The UN has stated that this probably violated Article 12 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which, together with the ICCPR and ICESCR, serve as the "International Bill of Rights." While international law is part of the law of the United States, it is rarely looked to in the United States, and the Universal Declaration is more aspirational than really binding. It doesn't invalidate our laws on its own; we don't have a policy as striking things down because they violate it.

This has *nothing* to do with the United States Constitution. You can demand your Constitutional rights be respected as much as you want; most people demand that without having an understanding of what the Constitution guarantees, instead using it (without legal basis) to rationalize a position that the government shouldn't interfere in X, where X is what they want to do.

about two weeks ago

Obama Administration Says the World's Servers Are Ours

Etherwalk Discoverable (749 comments)

IIRC, information in the possession, custody, or control of a US party is subject to discovery in a civil suit, regardless of where it is located. The company can provide it or lose the case.

about two weeks ago

Chinese Hackers Infiltrate Firms Using Malware-Laden Handheld Scanners

Etherwalk Backtrack the financials... (93 comments)

Check for uncanny puts and calls on the market before earnings reports come out that can be traced to related parties...

about three weeks ago

Google, Dropbox, and Others Forge Patent "Arms Control Pact"

Etherwalk Re:Clear Cut Collusion (73 comments)

collusion, n., secret or illegal cooperation or conspiracy, especially in order to cheat or deceive others.

It is not secret.

Can you point to an illegality? I suppose you can argue that they are restraining trade. But I think most courts would be okay with it. (All contracts restrain trade on some level; the motives behind this one aren't colluding to prevent competition so much as agreeing not to engage in an unproductive patent war.)

The patent system has a lot of problems. But just because we disagree with parts of it or how it's used doesn't make the people who are using it criminals.

about three weeks ago

Ode To Sound Blaster: Are Discrete Audio Cards Still Worth the Investment?

Etherwalk Innovation in Markets (502 comments)

Markets compete on quality until the cheap stuff becomes good enough; then they compete on reliability; ultimately they compete on price. So long as there's a market people will keep making expensive high-quality stuff, but they'll *never* be a part of the mainstream market again.

about three weeks ago

Judge: $324M Settlement In Silicon Valley Tech Worker Case Not Enough

Etherwalk Re:$507.03 (150 comments)

Lets say me and my friends decide to harass you, so I grab your iPhone and spike it on the pavement. You threaten to sue so I peel off a couple 20s and a 10, stuff it in your shirt pocket and say get lost. Do you feel compensated or insulted further?

Class actions are usually more about incentivizing the company not to do it again than they are about paying people a few bucks.

about a month ago

Prisoners Freed After Cops Struggle With New Records Software

Etherwalk Buy me a beer. (128 comments)

Why do you think violent criminals released from jail due to crappy software would be somehow mad at the software company?

Oh, the terror! "Emergency improve your implementation beyond what I probably paid for or else I'll send over fifteen guys to buy you beer!"

about a month ago

Prisoners Freed After Cops Struggle With New Records Software

Etherwalk Simple Process (128 comments)

What's to escalate? When the schedule flat out doesn't work, and your calls to customer service get handed over to a customer svc agent's voice mail, unless they want to talk to you, and they don't... that was what happened with us, I have no idea what happened with them... escalate doesn't help.

1) Escalate to the purchasing decision-maker on your end.
2) As purchasing decision-maker, call one or more decision-makers on the other end. Service, but if you don't get through right away, then whoever at the company you have a relationship with (sales rep? development engineer?), who will know who to call.
3) If that fails, call and email company CEO. 3a) if that fails, company board of directors.
4) Document, document, document, succinctly, what occurred in terms of the company's response. If they are still being unhelpful, send them that document.
5) If they continue to be unhelpful, point out that it will be necessary to share said document in your press release about why prisoners are free.
6) If they continue to be unhelpful, do so. Run press release past your lawyers first to be sure you will win any defamation lawsuit to follow.

about a month ago

Judge: $324M Settlement In Silicon Valley Tech Worker Case Not Enough

Etherwalk Re:$507.03 (150 comments)

Not even close reasonable; the lawyers are going to take half.

Then the government is going to take 33%.

That leaves the engineers with about a week of salary--probably actually less.

6 months salary for the ones who didn't loose their jobs+ 1 year of compensation for any who lost their job because of this + lawyers fees would be reasonable.

Lawyer's fees generally come out of the pocket of the side hiring the lawyers--it doesn't go into the calculation, unless we change that rule on a systemic level.

Six months *may* be reasonable, but it's a math problem, and a very speculative one--what would their salaries have been *without* the anti-competitive practices?

about a month and a half ago

US House of Representatives Votes To Cut Funding To NSA

Etherwalk No (164 comments)

I'm keenly aware this statement by the US House can be circumvented in some fashion. These folks they're dealing with are secret agencies.

At the very least the representatives still have to pay me some lip service. Hell, some of them may have retained the ability to care.

Either way, it's a small victory for the Republic.

Forget the lip service. Just forget it. When you get involved in power politics at the level you're talking about, what happens *in the meeting* is what matters, and what you talk about outside the meeting is the window dressing.

Personalities change when you go into the back room. So do goals. People beg, borrow, steal, lie, blackmail, and it's all about what you can do for me, what I can do for you, what we can deliver, how we can ensure goal X gets done, and goal X isn't what we tell the people outside the room.

You're selling a narrative to people outside the room.

about a month and a half ago

Judge: $324M Settlement In Silicon Valley Tech Worker Case Not Enough

Etherwalk Re:$507.03 (150 comments)

$324.5 million / 64000 workers = $507.03

These tech workers are getting fuck either way.

$5070. It almost certainly isn't enough to make the engineers whole, but it is more than nothing and not completely unrespectable. (They didn't lose their entire salary, but did lose some money.)

It is a *settlement* proposal, though. It's not supposed to be enough to make them whole--just more reasonable for both sides than fighting.

about a month and a half ago

1958 Integrated Circuit Prototypes From Jack Kilby's TI Lab Up For Sale

Etherwalk Re:$1,000,000 - $2,000,000? wow (76 comments)

If you had something that was provably the first wheel, it would go for more than the price of a wheel.

about a month and a half ago

Chinese Gov't Reveals Microsoft's Secret List of Android-Killer Patents

Etherwalk Re:But no one really cares about Microsoft... (140 comments)

Maybe Microsoft could increase their marketshare by 50%: And get to 1.5% of the market.

3.2% according to comscore as of January. In the major European markets, they are at 10%.

about a month and a half ago



China Criticizes US For Making Weapons Plans Stealable, Alleges Attacks.

Etherwalk Etherwalk writes  |  about a year ago

Etherwalk (681268) writes "Huang Chengqing, director of the National Computer Network Emergency Response Technical Team/Coordination Center of China, alleged that United States cyber-attacks on China have been as serious as those on the United States. In response to the recent hacks of United States military designs, he replied with an observation whose obviousness is worthy of Captain Hammer: "Even following the general principle of secret-keeping, it should not have been linked to the Internet.""
Link to Original Source

Manhattan, 1984

Etherwalk Etherwalk writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Etherwalk writes "The New York Times (and the usual suspects) are reporting on developments in the quest to charge driving fees for all vehicles headed below 86th Street in Manhattan. Notably absent from any part of the discussion? A record is made of every car or truck that enters, together with the vehicle ownership information and the date and time of travel — either as part of EZ-Pass or in license-plate photos taken for subsequent billing."

Etherwalk Etherwalk writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Etherwalk writes "NY's Mayor Bloomberg announced today a series of green initiatives to reduce pollution in New York City, notably planting 1 million new trees and adding an $8 fee for all cars and $21 for commercial trucks driving below 86th Street from 6:00 AM to 6:00 PM on weekdays, the fee to be levied via EZ-Pass and license photos. The system's implementation effectively would make it a crime to enter lower Manhattan in your own vehicle without creating a record of your driving habits for the state."


Etherwalk has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?
or Connect with...

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>