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Comments

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Reglue: Opening Up the World To Deserving Kids With Linux Computers

LessThanObvious Re:Sigh. (89 comments)

The results depend more on the kid than the other circumstances. I gave a desktop and monitor to a friend's son along with some books (Norton's Inside the PC, Python for Kids, Linux, etc..). It dual boots Ubuntu and Centos. If the kid chooses to make something of it he has the tools, with or without the internet. In the developed world almost anyone can go to a library and get internet access. Adults think kids need to know how to "use" computers, but it's the kids that know how computers work and how to piece the logic together that will have a different future.

yesterday
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Ask Slashdot: Is Running Mission-Critical Servers Without a Firewall Common?

LessThanObvious Host based? (345 comments)

The post sounds to me like it is asking about host based firewall on the server. If you have a firewall on the internet connection then not running firewalls on the hosts themselves is exceedingly common. Historically the hard crunchy outside and soft chewy center model is all anyone ever expected. Now it is considered more important to have additional security in the interior. If all it takes to completely compromise internal security is for one user to wander in with an infected laptop, that isn't good. The need for, benefits of and headaches attached to host based firewalls on servers vary depending on the environment. It isn't something I insist upon.

yesterday
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Jesse Jackson: Tech Diversity Is Next Civil Rights Step

LessThanObvious Jesse fail (504 comments)

While I'm happy to push companies to prefer local talent over H-1Bs, there is no civil rights issue in high tech. Tech companies are happy to hire any candidate with the skills appropriate for the job. The public education system is certainly failing our youth and junior colleges need to expand and modernize tech programs, those are places to focus on expanding access not just for minorities, but for everyone. Considering the bad PR they get if diversity percentages are a little off, believe me companies are not avoiding minority hires. As per the wisdom of SouthPark, "Jesse Jackson is not the emperor of black people" - Token Black

2 days ago
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Senate Bill Would Ban Most Bulk Surveillance

LessThanObvious A good start (176 comments)

I'll believe they are even remotely serious when some of the other garbage legislation gets repealed. We can go back to the days before 9/11 when we actually had some respect for rights freedoms and American values. Repeal these and pass the USA Freedom act: FISA Amendments Act of 2008 USA Patriot Act

3 days ago
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FBI Studied How Much Drones Impact Your Privacy -- Then Marked It Secret

LessThanObvious No drones (139 comments)

They can hide all the reports they want. Obviously drones used improperly can completely destroy privacy. It's going to be very hard to draw the line. I just hope our country has enough sense to steadfastly oppose any use of drones for surveillance of people on U.S. soil.

4 days ago
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On Forgetting the Facts: Questions From the EU For Google, Other Search Engines

LessThanObvious I've forgotten (184 comments)

To me it seems strange to focus on search providers. Search indexes content and metadata. If the content doesn't exist it isn't indexed. Shouldn't the site offing the content be the one responsible not the search provider pointing to it?

4 days ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

LessThanObvious Re:Proportionate response? (376 comments)

We certainly don't know how to approach a crisis that isn't immediate and dramatic. I wish that instead of messaging like asking for voluntary %20 reduction they could have said that is a serious problem and everyone should use as little as possible. There's no need for fear and emotional overreaction, but there isn't much harm in being overly cautious on consumption.

about a week ago
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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

LessThanObvious Re:name and location tweeted... (894 comments)

This case aside, it's probably bad form to post info about airport operations in real time. Leaking crew names and current locations could compromise security.

about a week ago
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Will Your Next Car Be Covered In Morphing Dimples?

LessThanObvious Re:Golf ball? (138 comments)

Conversation in golf dimple-car:
G1: Hey Bob, weren't you supposed to turn left?

G2: Yeah, but this car has a wicked slice.

about a week ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

LessThanObvious Proportionate response? (376 comments)

California Gov Brown Urges a %20 voluntary reduction in usage. The media coverage has been moderate. In a world where something as mundane as a celebrity tweet is news I have to wonder if this is being downplayed to avoid panic? Is there some broad based assumption that somehow next year or the year after is going to be different? I'm concerned that if the next three years are like this one it could be a serious problem to say the least. +1 Brawndo has electrolytes.

about a week ago
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Comcast Carrying 1Tbit/s of IPv6 Internet Traffic

LessThanObvious IPv6 end user footprint (146 comments)

Published on Monday, December 09, 2013 www.comcast6.net

"Comcast's IPv6 deployment continues to expand, over 25% of our customers are actively provisioned with native dual stack broadband! The following areas of the Comcast broadband footprint are now fully IPv6 enabled - Colorado, New Mexico, Minnesota, Kansas, Missouri, Maryland, Ohio, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Houston."

about a week ago
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Comcast Carrying 1Tbit/s of IPv6 Internet Traffic

LessThanObvious IPv6 How will it happen? (146 comments)

How do you [Slashdot users] see IPv6 transition actually happening?

Will each internet user have dual stack?

IPv6 is much more complex, how will companies support users who barely understand IP addressing when IPv6 is going to seem like a long string of meaningless characters?

Do you see something like a dynamic IPv6 to IPv4 DNS/NAT translator to hide IPv6 complexity from the user a viable solution?

about a week ago
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Dropbox Head Responds To Snowden Claims About Privacy

LessThanObvious No surprise (176 comments)

I'm neither surprised, nor disappointed by the response from Dropbox. It's frightening how much blind trust I'm seeing businesses place in these cloud storage platforms. I worked for a client that had us posting customer configuration files with clear text passwords on these services. I can only imagine the level of risk others are taking on. This is all uncharted territory and with services being so cheap and easy, it's guaranteed that users, even business users who should know better will take huge risks they don't bother to evaluate. You can outsource the activity of file storage, but when you delegate responsibility you are still accountable for any related failure, ethically if not legally.

about a week ago
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Internet Explorer Vulnerabilities Increase 100%

LessThanObvious IE dangerous, but useful for now... (137 comments)

I use I.E. for one reason these days. Every company I end up working for has some internal business application that only gets tested and supported on I.E. and this is particularly the case after I lock down Firefox for actual web browsing. These kind of internal business applications often fail with even minimal security restrictions.

I hold out little hope that apps designed to be run in controlled environments will ever work with a decently locked down browser. The issue is that the most vulnerable business users will take their corporate issued laptop with I.E. and default settings and use that as if it's sane to use that configuration on the internet.

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

LessThanObvious Re:Did anything improve? (285 comments)

Unfortunately, parents and educators think pointing a clicking around an iPad is the same as giving students a foundation in technology. I'd like to see a vast world of resources available to teachers to stream educational content. Kids having access to the internet in the classroom is not going to provide the benefits that are assumed.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Many Employees Does Microsoft Really Need?

LessThanObvious Re:Microsoft and redundancy (272 comments)

Agreed impossible to determine. MS is certainly bloated some for good reason like having defined processes. The question of staffing can only be approached after figuring out projects and business segments where they have no business even being involved should be eliminated completely. It's OK to dramatically shrink a business to focus on proven profit driven priorities and realistic strategic growth segments. They can't chase mobile/cloud initiatives to compete at any cost. MS doesn't have fans so making assumptions about adoption of services is foolish.

about two weeks ago
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Larry Page: Healthcare Data Mining Could Save 100,000 Lives a Year

LessThanObvious Larry Page, the danger of good intentions (186 comments)

When Google started, we trusted the company because they didn't have adds on the main search page. We supported them because they were the underdog and Yahoo was too commercialized. I believe Larry Page had good intentions. Then the inevitable need to drive revenue comes to the forefront and targeted advertising takes center stage. The goldmine of user information is harvested. Larry Page, I believe does not see the evil. The power that comes from from mass information collection will always be misused. Larry Page, maybe you actually want to save lives by mining health data, but truly those with a pure profit motive will misuse the information to the detriment of us all. In Google you helped create a monster. Now do the right thing and keep the monster out of our personal lives.

about a month ago
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Hospitals Begin Data-Mining Patients

LessThanObvious Re:Time to Legislate Data Mining (162 comments)

Criminalizing the collection of the data isn't going to happen. It should happen, but the political will isn't even close to being there. The supreme court ruling in the Smith case set a precedent about protection of information shared with a third party. (Your bank transactions, your credit card transactions, your Facebook account, your phone calls metadata) Many states have their own more restrictive laws, but at the federal level you have almost no protection of anything shared with a third party. We need to redefine these relationships, redefine what we consider a reasonable expectation of privacy, redefine who can share, sell and collect personal information. We would need to define a persons accounts and activities as being private as extension of ones self. We say "my bank account", "my credit card", "my email", we as Americans do not think of these accounts or our lawful activities in those accounts to be public. It should be a crime to purposefully disclose information about customers when the information disclosure is not a functional requirement of the service provided. I hope all you Big Data marketing fucks die of ass-cancer.

about a month ago
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Tech Workforce Diversity At Facebook Similar To Google And Yahoo

LessThanObvious Over-hyped issue (265 comments)

I've been working in high tech for 15 years and from what I see there is virtually no discrimination. Nobody cares about race or gender. Sure there are some jobs naturally draw more men due the physical demands, which sometimes discourages women from the entry level jobs (cabling, rack-and-stack, desktop support) that can lead to more advanced IT work. That aside when I look around I see plenty of women in engineering. As for racial minorities, it's certainly about participation rates and not hiring practices. Schools are generally bad at exposing students to technical skills and opportunities. If anyone wants to be an engineer, the best thing is you don't need anyone's permission. If you develop the skills and seek the education the opportunity is there. The hard part is that no one is going to tell you how to get there. You have to self-motivate, you have to figure it out for yourself. You have to try things and find the specific skill set that you are suited to master among the skill sets that are in demand in the market. There are complex social issues that go into the participation rates only some of which society is likely to change. We must also accept that free will is always going to create statistical anomalies. The big name high tech firms are like the finish line of starting a tech career, they are not the gatekeepers of who starts or finishes the race.

about a month ago

Submissions

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Ask SlashDot: What should the NSA be able to do without a warrant?

LessThanObvious LessThanObvious writes  |  yesterday

LessThanObvious (3671949) writes "We have a general consensus in the U.S. and abroad that says the NSA has overstepped their boundaries in data collection and surveillance. The costs to liberty, free speech, privacy rights as well as economic and foreign policy costs outlined in the New America Open Technology Institute July 2014 Policy Paper — "Surveillance Costs" have been broadly discussed. It seems now that there is enough political inertia post Snowden and enough economic incentive to make changes to protect U.S. competitive position and international trust relationships for real change to come about. It is also pretty much a given that an organization like the NSA with a multibillion dollar budget is not going to simply dry up and blow away.

In a world where we are trying to defend our nation and others around the globe from highly sophisticated cyber-crime, cyber-attack and serious terror threats at home and abroad, it does seem that the NSA and other agencies have a legitimate role to play. Let's imagine a world where the NSA and other agencies rewrite the rules of when and where information could be collected, allowing for adequate transparency and protections for U.S. and foreign individuals rights. How can we find the needle in a stack of haystacks if they are no longer permitted to disturb the haystack?

Now under those circumstances what should the NSA be allowed to do without a warrant?"

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