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The Rise of Everyday Hackers

Loosifur Lies, damn lies, and statistics (126 comments)

"A simple Google search for 'SQL injection hack' provides 1.74 million results, including videos with explicit instructions on how to exploit SQL injection vulnerabilities."

Which means that people could be searching to learn what that means because they read or heard it somewhere, or because they want to prevent SQL injection hacks on their site. There are two alternative explanations that don't involve cracking, and I'm sure you can come up with more.

"Although SQL injection flaws are easy to identify and fix, Veracode found that 32 percent of web applications are still affected by SQL injection vulnerabilities. As a result, as many as 30 percent of breaches in 2013 will be from SQL injection attacks."

The quoted statistic does not prove the subsequent claim. This violates basic principles of logic, and anyone who's taken a statistics course (as all reporters should) would see the problem here. Just because 1/3 of web apps are vulnerable to a given attack does not mean that 1/3 of web apps will subsequently fall victim to said attack. The less horrible way to phrase this would be to say that there's a 1 in 3 probability that future attacks will involve SQL injection, and even that's not born out by the statistic.

Here's an analogy (non-automotive): 15% of college basketball players are talented enough to be drafted into the NBA, let's say. This does not mean that 15% of college basketball players WILL be drafted into the NBA, nor does it mean, and this is the kicker, that 85% of new NBA players will be talented players coming from somewhere other than college teams. Or, 1/4 of all homes being vulnerable to electrical fires does not mean that 1/4 of all home fires will be electrical.

1 year,16 days
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Film Critic Roger Ebert Dead at 70 Of Cancer

Loosifur An entertaining, gifted critic. That's it. (198 comments)

I'm a little surprised to see the outpouring for Roger Ebert, frankly. I never wished the man ill, and I really enjoyed his work as a critic. Let's remember that this is the same guy who said that video games could never be art, which is fine as it's his opinion, but it's just a little more myopic than I'd expect to see Slashdotters ignore. Still, a matter of opinion. However, when he immediately made cracks about the death of Ryan Dunn following his death, he fell to a level of tastelessness and cruelty that was absolutely unacceptable. It's hard to feel an excess of sympathy for the passing of someone who went out of his way to cast aspersions on the recently deceased.

1 year,20 days
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Mayer Terminates Yahoo's Remote Employee Policy

Loosifur Yahoo's still around? (524 comments)

1. I didn't realize Yahoo still existed until I started hearing about this new CEO.

2. She's a little bit Martha Stewart, but still pretty cute (call me!).

3. When I went to the new Yahoo page, I immediately thought, "Oh, shit, how'd I wind up on Facebook?"

4. Remote work often means that you have to justify your billable hours, and that you're on call 24/7. In the office, it's so, so, so much easier to dick around looking up plans for raised gardening beds and writing horror fiction. Not that I'd know anything about that. And inclement weather might prevent you coming in, or necessitate your leaving early. And illness might require that you miss a day or two, etc.

5. They have this weird thing now, it's called teleconferencing. I'd love to tell Ms. Mayer about it some time. Maybe over drinks? Say, this Friday, around 6? I'll be the dashingly handsome yet rugged gentleman in his mid-30s staring winsomely into the middle distance.

about a year ago
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Valve Sued In Germany Over Game Ownership

Loosifur Re:Trade-offs (384 comments)

"It honestly wouldn't surprise me if one day the bottles of Heinz Ketchup have a tiny-print on them that states that the product is licensed for home use only."

You mean like the "Not For Individual Sale" labels on most bulk-packaged items?

about a year ago
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The Atlantic's Scientology Advertorial

Loosifur The Atlantic isn't alone (213 comments)

Foreign Policy, which was bought by the Washington Post a few years ago, started running these type of things around the time (shortly before or after, don't recall) of the change in ownership. Now that I think about it, it was probably shortly after, because the Post itself began running a bunch of "Chinawatch" segments on its site, which were basically advertorials from China Daily, one of China's state-run newspapers. At any rate, around the time I noticed that FP started to be over half full of ads by volume, and that easily 3/4 of that was some marketing drivel about how awesome China is, or how Dubai is doing such wonderful things in the world, is when I dropped my subscription. I'm not paying for a bimonthly travel brochure, and I'm sure as hell not reading a magazine about international relations that sells ad space to propagandists.

about a year ago
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New York Passes Landmark Gun Law

Loosifur Re:We need gas control! (1591 comments)

Well, at least he's not an Anonymous Coward.

about a year ago
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Instagram Loses Almost Half Its Daily Users In a Month

Loosifur Re:And we care because why? (250 comments)

I think the following link to xkcd is instructive here: http://xkcd.com/1150/

as is the following regarding Facebook: http://www.ethannonsequitur.com/facebook-you-customer-product-pigs.html/facebook-and-you-pigs .

Instagram has no business model. It operates at a loss. The whole reason Instagram operates is to attract "customers" that provide it with free content. The whole reason Facebook paid $1 billion for Instagram was to gain access to a ton of users who now depend on the site to host their content, and who may cede their rights to said content depending on how sneaky the ToS change can be. It's just got "sucker" written all over it.

A better analogy would be if I opened a parking garage in a city and let anyone store their car(s) there for free. Then, after a year or two, let people know that I reserve the right to auction their vehicles without additional notice.

about a year ago
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Smart Ice Cubes Tell When You've Had Enough Alcohol

Loosifur Re:Your solving the wrong problem (167 comments)

Man! The competition is over, ladies and gentlemen, and we have a winner!

People seem to have totally glossed over that part. In my younger days, and even some of my less younger days, there were a few times when I drank so much that I didn't remember the entire night the next morning, or at least not until later in the day after a hamburger and a nap. According to TFA, this guy blacked out after three (3) drinks, so either he was drugged, or he has some sort of severe allergy.

about a year ago
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Why Do Entrepreneurs Innovate Better Than Managers?

Loosifur You've got it backwards (134 comments)

People who tend to be drawn towards risk-taking, who have tremendous focus, and who are excellent self-motivators tend to become entrepreneurs. People who are organized (and good at organizing), who have a talent for seeing things at the macro level, and who are good at sort of assembling and handling lots of moving parts tend to become managers of one kind or another.

And in reality, successful entrepreneurs are also good at managing people and resources, just as great managers are creative problem-solvers and aren't afraid to think outside of the box. There are exceptions, of course, but the Bill Lumbergh manager stereotype and the sort of Steve Jobs/Bill Gates obnoxious genius stereotype don't seem to be the rule.

about a year ago
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Nintendo Puts a Bedtime On Wii U Content In Europe

Loosifur Nintendo needed another reason not to buy the WiiU (190 comments)

I'm an American, so this doesn't affect me outside of the fact that the liberals in our country will think it's a great idea in another three to five years. But, really, it's like Nintendo is trying to chase customers away. There are already parental controls, so by making it needlessly difficult to purchase games that are geared towards adults, Nintendo is just sending the (admittedly true) message that they have no interest whatsoever in adult gamers. Unless you're under 14, really like virtual bowling, or are the kind of adult who describes things as "kawaii", there is nothing for you on the WiiU.

And, speaking as an adult who plays a shit-ton of 18+ games (on PC, thanks very much) 11:00 PM finds me either in bed finishing a book or out at the bar with friends if I'm off the next day. It's been many moons since I didn't have to be up and productive by 8:00 AM, and if I get less than 8 hours of sleep, I'm draggin' ass the next day. Besides which, how many people are going to be lining up for the opportunity to stay up later than they'd like to so they can have the privilege of buying a game from Nintendo?

about a year ago
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Nintendo Puts a Bedtime On Wii U Content In Europe

Loosifur Re:Parental Controls (190 comments)

Yeah, and they stopped, because it's a stupid idea.

about a year ago
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Dr. Richard Dawkins On Education, 'Innocence of Muslims,' and Rep. Paul Broun

Loosifur Re:God (862 comments)

Agnosticism isn't simply a point on a line that extends between atheism and theism.

A theist believes that there is a god or gods, or something along those lines, and believes that no "evidence" is necessary to maintain that belief, at least not in the conventional sense. In other words, a theist doesn't see a problem with believing in a being without having some sort of independent proof of its existence.

An atheist does not believe in a god or gods unless and until there is evidence to the contrary, in the same way that most people wouldn't believe there was a tooth fairy unless someone actually introduced them to the tooth fairy. Where a theist doesn't believe evidence is necessary, or, maybe more accurately, believes that subjective evidence is evidence enough (i.e., faith, or a "personal relationship" with the deity), an atheist doesn't believe in a god or gods without objective evidence to the contrary.

Now, an agnostic is someone who believes that metaphysical issues like the existence or nature of god or the gods is not only unknown, but unknowable in the usual sense of the word. Agnostics (gnosis meaning knowledge in Greek) believe that the idea of fact or evidence or proof is completely irrelevant to metaphysics, because humans simply aren't able to know one way or the other. The nature of god(s) is such that there can never be any true knowledge of them, certainly not in the same sense as "knowing" about gravity, or that New York City is on the east coast, or that your mom wears combat boots.

So, you can have an agnostic theist ("I believe in god, but I don't think that anyone can really know about god in an objective way,"), or even an agnostic atheist ("I don't believe in god because there is no proof, and even if there was a god you wouldn't be able to prove it,") although the latter is a little more difficult to manage. But it isn't as if putting Richard Dawkins and Pat Roberts in a blender would result in an agnostic.

about a year and a half ago
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Artificial Misting System Allows Reintroduction of Extinct Toad

Loosifur Re:A very unusual toad (121 comments)

No, but the resulting juxtaposition just does weird things to you after awhile. You start getting some funny ideas when you see Kermit on television, that sort of thing.

about a year and a half ago
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Artificial Misting System Allows Reintroduction of Extinct Toad

Loosifur Re:A very unusual toad (121 comments)

Do you have a reference for that? Because I just blew twenty minutes looking for videos of frogs signing to each other when I could have been watching porn.

about a year and a half ago
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Seattle's Creepy Cameraman Pushes Public Surveillance Buttons

Loosifur Monkeys (387 comments)

All this proves is that people are still primates. Staring at someone signals aggression. A camera can't stare at you, because it doesn't have a face. A person holding a camera is still a person, and he's a person doing the most threatening thing short of actual physical aggression that a primate can do: stare at you quietly with no expression.

Congrats, dude, you've just taught people that the kind of people who talk about surveillance and Orwell REALLY ARE socially-crippled paranoid weirdos. Privacy advocates everywhere owe you a swift kick in the ass. Two, in fact, for not explaining your purpose after freaking people out, and thus failing to do any education about privacy issues whatsoever.

about a year and a half ago
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Seattle's Creepy Cameraman Pushes Public Surveillance Buttons

Loosifur Re:Drones watching you scratch your balls (387 comments)

Bingo.

I think the clearest illustration of what's really being tested here is that these people are in situations where the common thread is the camera. The new element, the one that produces the reaction, is the person. I bet one million fake imaginary dollars that if you conducted this "study" by having some guy just walk up to people and stare at them, it would produce the same reaction. Conversely, hang signs on cameras in the middle of the street that say, "Smile, we're watching you and saving the footage for later masturbation!" you might get some laughs, but that's about it.

about a year and a half ago
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Seattle's Creepy Cameraman Pushes Public Surveillance Buttons

Loosifur Re:The difference... (387 comments)

...no, no, it really isn't like that at all. In fact, I just wasted ten minutes of my life trying to fix your analogy and was totally unable to do so. You'd be better off comparing it to a car or something, at this point.

about a year and a half ago
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Telling the Truth In Today's China

Loosifur Re:No, It's Way Over the Line and Abusively Ambigu (157 comments)

Oh, lord, not this argument again. Ok, so you think that, because you pay taxes and/or a health insurance premium, you should be able to tell people that they can't engage in potentially risky behavior that could result in their taking advantage of any public services or insurance.

Well, they also pay taxes, and may very well pay insurance premiums as well, but let's just set that aside.

You've convinced me. It's perfectly reasonable that, since I pay for a tiny, tiny fraction of the public services used by everyone, then I should have some say in personal behavior that could impact those services. Also, since I pay for health, car, and homeowner's insurance, the behavior of other people affects me within those contexts.

So, we'll go ahead and limit the amount of soda you can sell at once. Also, SUVs are top-heavy, so we'll ban those too; when people get into accidents, it affects my premiums. Ditto for people who live on the California coast, along the Gulf of Mexico, and Tornado Alley; not only do these people impact my homeowner's insurance, but federal money goes to bail those dopes out whenever weather happens. Since I'm paying for them, they shouldn't be allowed to live in dangerous places like Oklahoma.

Anyone else see any problem with this line of thinking?

about a year and a half ago
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Telling the Truth In Today's China

Loosifur Re:But capitalism sucks... (157 comments)

Right on, eldavojohn. Capitalism and socialism are economic models. You can have a totalitarian state that allows the private ownership of capital, and you can have a democratic system with state ownership of capital. And certainly capitalism has never been a proof against corruption.

Granted, capitalism tends to go well with an open society and individual liberties simply because it's tough to keep a system going over the long run where citizens have economic freedom without political freedom, and because the success of a capitalist system depends on a legal system that protects private ownership, which is undermined when a government can seize property by fiat. And on the other side of the coin, socialist systems lend themselves to greater government involvement in daily life if for no other reason than that societies which see government involvement in ownership as appropriate, they also tend to find government involvement in other aspects of life as perfectly acceptable. But you don't have to look any further than the UK or Sweden for a good example of socialist economies with democratic systems, or China for something pretty close to a capitalist dictatorship.

about a year and a half ago
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Yahoo Will Ignore IE 10's "Do Not Track"

Loosifur Re:Shocking (360 comments)

Well, but if the standard (which, to be fair, was changed very recently) defaults to violating user privacy, I fail to see how MS isn't on the side of the angels here. And we all know how effective shunning IE because it doesn't follow standards has been; anyone who's had to write the same damn page twice because IE doesn't support X can speak to that.

Now, since the standard shifted rather suspiciously, companies like Yahoo can track users as much as they'd like, with no notice, and claim that they're doing so for the lofty moral goal of supporting the W3's standards. IMO, it's a bad standard, and it ought to be restored to defaulting to privacy.

about a year and a half ago

Submissions

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United States most heavily armed nation on Earth!

Loosifur Loosifur writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Loosifur (954968) writes "According to Reuters, "the United States has 90 guns for every 100 citizens, making it the most heavily armed society in the world..." The article continues to note that over half of the firearms manufactured worldwide are made in the good ol' US of A as well. Compare this to the rest of the world taken as a whole where the average is about 1 for every 10.

http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSL283489 3820070828?feedType=RSS&feedName=topNews"

Link to Original Source
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Wal-Mart selling DRM-free music downloads.

Loosifur Loosifur writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Loosifur (954968) writes "Washingtonpost.com reports that, in a stunning, distinctly un-Wal-Mart like move, Wal-Mart has announced its decision to begin selling plain ol' MP3s from its website, either by the song or by the album. In a related story, snowballs have begun flocking to Hell to try their luck.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/artic le/2007/08/21/AR2007082100360.html?hpid=moreheadli nes"

Link to Original Source

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