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Ask Slashdot: Which Android Phone (and Carrier) For WiFi Proxy Support?

MBoffin Very simple with any Android phone. (125 comments)

Use ConnectBot (free) to create an SSH tunnel to another computer, with dynamic port forwarding. This creates a SOCKS5 proxy. Then use Firefox (free) with the Firefox add-on Proxy Mobile installed. Set the proxy settings in Firefox to the SOCKS5 proxy set up with ConnectBot.

Done. Secure proxy over WiFi when browsing.

However, if you want system-wide proxy support (everything going through the proxy), you'll very likely need to root.

more than 2 years ago

Apple's Siri As Revolutionary As the Mac?

MBoffin Re:Inside? (692 comments)

The phone does it.

Incorrect. It's done in the cloud, just like Android's implementation. You need a data connection for it to work. Apple stated this in the introductory announcement.

more than 2 years ago

Microsoft Says IE9 Blocks More Malware Than Chrome

MBoffin Re:NoScript (226 comments)

I'm not talking about savvy users. I'm talking about average users. Ones who visit a site and get confused why things aren't working and get frustrated before, finally, after a couple minutes, realizing they might be running into a NoScript problem, and then do those one or two clicks to get it working. And then repeat the cycle again when they're off to the next site.

I bring up average users because the malware blocking features in Chrome and IE9 are targeted at average users.

more than 2 years ago

Microsoft Says IE9 Blocks More Malware Than Chrome

MBoffin Re:NoScript (226 comments)

NoScript blocks more malware than either.

NoScript turns practically every site a regular user visits into a broken mess. The amount of time I've seen NoScript users deal with reconfiguring NoScript just so they can have a reasonably decent browsing experience far exceeds the amount of time they would have to spend dealing with malware. It's like watching Mel Gibson use his apartment in Conspiracy Theory.

more than 2 years ago

So Far, More Than 50,000 Kindle Fire Pre-Orders Per Day

MBoffin Re:Pre-Ordered on day 1 (291 comments)

...if there isn't a way to browse the internet WITHOUT Silk, I won't use it much at all.

You can turn Silk off and not use it all. Then it just acts like any other webkit browser.

more than 2 years ago

Google+ Enters Open Beta

MBoffin Re:Google+ is a success (188 comments)

It was a success in making Facebook to improve their service.

Facebook still hasn't improved my trust in them, though.

Facebook improving their "Lists" feature to act like Google+'s Circles doesn't make me any more inclined to use Lists. The fact is, Facebook lost my trust a long time ago and will never get it back. They have a long, long history of opening up your private information without your consent and then (sometimes) allowing you to opt back in to the more closed model.

Lists are something I do not ever want to be public, but I have no assurance or trust whatsoever that Facebook won't one day decide to make everyone's lists viewable to everyone else. As much as I don't trust Google, I at least trust that they won't screw that up.

about 3 years ago

Amazon, Google Cave To Apple, Drop In-App Buttons

MBoffin Re:Before Apple, Amazon kept 70%, paid 30% (307 comments)

Before agency, Amazon [sold to customers at a price they were happy with]. Apple [screwed over Amazon's ability to do that] when they announced iBooks. Seems [you] forget this fact. If you are [a consumer], you are very [pissed off] Apple changed the e-book world.

I'm happy Google and Amazon took this route. The less money given to Apple from this market, the better. Apple's actions were not pro-consumer with regard to e-books and the agency model, and they shouldn't be rewarded for those actions.

more than 3 years ago

Android Software Piracy Rampant

MBoffin Re:Numbers need a reference scale (510 comments)

They probably have some part of their game that connects to a server to post scores, or some code that phones home. But most likely its a score posting and during that connection they get a unique ID for that phone so you can over write your best score. But if 8,659 people send in scores, but only 2,831 purchases were made, they can determine that most likely there is a 67% piracy rate for their application. So, its a guess, but a very educated guess, and could actually be said to be the lowest their app is being pirated, in that it could be higher amount of people having it installed but are not phoning home.

This is why we need more transparency in the numbers. The numbers scenario you describe could actually occur with no piracy at all. The Android Marketplace has a feature where you can buy an app and try it out for 24 hours and then return it for a full refund if you don't want it. Conceivably, 8,659 people could have bought the app and then played it for a day, but only 2,831 people ended up keeping it, meaning the developer only sees 2,831 purchases, but also sees 8,659 different score submissions to the server.

more than 3 years ago

Distinguishing Encrypted Data From Random Data?

MBoffin Re:No (467 comments)

However, just the presence of random files on the system could be incriminating. Perhaps it's better to hide the data in another type of file? Perhaps using the lsb of a bitmap file?

Or just name the file JavaRandomNumberSeedFile.txt or similar.

about 4 years ago

A Close Look At Apple's A4 Chip

MBoffin Re:Not sure if this is right... (245 comments)

This is overly pedantic, but it's the "iPhone 4", not the "iPhone 4G". It is the 4th generation of the iPhone, so it's "4G" in that sense, but it does not make use of any 4G mobile network.

more than 4 years ago

"Phone In One Hand, Ticket In the Other"

MBoffin Re:Phones need a "I'm driving" mode. (419 comments)

So what I want is a separate voicemail greeting or some other way of communicating status which will let me say that I'm on my goddamn way, so stop calling me to ask where I am. Because as it is right now, I can't effectively communicate the difference between this and my usual "I don't feel like taking your call." (There is a difference.)

HTC phones running Android have a feature that will let you do exactly this. You can set a pre-written text message and then when a call comes in, you can just hit the MENU button and it will send the caller immediately to voicemail and then automatically fire off the pre-written text message to the caller. Mine is set to, "Sorry, I can't take your call right this second. I'm in my car and don't have my hands-free headset." This way you can gracefully send them to voicemail, but at the same time let them know why you are doing so.

more than 4 years ago

Spam Hits Google Buzz Already

MBoffin You're Doing it Wrong (135 comments)

If you're Buzz box is full of spam, it means you you are following spammers. Either you suck at finding new people to follow, or your frequent contacts are spammers. Either way, "you're doing it wrong."

If you don't like what someone is posting in Buzz, don't follow them.

more than 4 years ago

Google Tweaks Buzz To Tackle Privacy Concerns

MBoffin Re:People don't read. (153 comments)

Nope, I'm saying if they care, they should read the instructions. I'm not saying I read all instructions everywhere, and I'm not saying every program/site provides them, but if it's something I care about (like who will see what items and information) then I look for the instructions and read them. I did it for Facebook and I do it for Google stuff.

You care enough about your privacy to have posted anonymously. If you ignored the "Post Anonymously" checkbox and I all of a sudden could see your username, you can't exactly get all pissed at Cmdr Taco for that. The lady who wrote the "fuck Google" post thought all her Reader shared items were going to all her followers. If she had her Reader set to private, they didn't go to her followers, except for those people in her followers who were already allowed to see her Reader shared items. But if she had her Reader shared items set to public, well, they're public. Anyone could already read them and they weren't private.

more than 4 years ago

Google Tweaks Buzz To Tackle Privacy Concerns

MBoffin Re:People don't read. (153 comments)

Read the "fuck you google" blog post. If you said *no* to buzz, it could get set up in a harmful way, which you couldn't configure or change because you had it disabled.

It still comes down to reading instructions. Even if it means reading instructions in other programs too. I meant it when I said "or hadn't already given up through other channels". Buzz doesn't magically make visible anything that you didn't already have visible. If you had your Reader shared items set to private, they stay that way, but if you had them set to public, well, they're public.

more than 4 years ago

Google Tweaks Buzz To Tackle Privacy Concerns

MBoffin People don't read. (153 comments)

I guess this whole privacy snafu wasn't a big deal to me because I actually read their instructions.

No, the information about which settings do what weren't in 72pt type, but it's not like they were unintelligible or not there, or not presented to the user right away. But since I actually read the instructions they gave and read the dialog boxes that came up, I didn't lose any privacy I didn't want to lose (or hadn't already given up through other channels).

People just don't read. Ask any program designer. You know why so many programs have terrible help menus and help files? Because writing them is a thankless job. A fraction of a percent will actually look at the information you give them about how your program works and how to make it do what you want. If they do somehow get around to looking at the information you provide, they don't read it; they skim it for keywords and then barely read enough to try something else.

So, yes, Google could have made it more clear what was happening when you set up Buzz, but it's not like they yanked your pants down when you weren't looking.

more than 4 years ago

Nexus One Update Fixes 3G, Adds Multitouch

MBoffin Summary is Wrong About Multitouch (174 comments)

No surprise, but the summary is wrong. True, there has been multitouch capability in recent versions of Android, but not true that no phones in the US support it. Even my HTC Hero (running Android 1.5) has multitouch built into the basic system apps like the browser and the gallery. Additionally there are apps on the marketplace that make use of multitouch, such as the Dolphin browser.

The summary should indicate that no other phones have previously had multitouch built into the system apps that Google ships with the stock OS.

more than 4 years ago

World's First Integrated Twin-Lens 3D Camcorder

MBoffin Key Missing Feature (162 comments)

It only has one eyepiece! Talk about a huge oversight for a 3D camera! With all the engineering that went into this camera, it's amazing they missed this one.

more than 4 years ago

Google's Nexus One Phone Launches

MBoffin App Storage (568 comments)

I don't think App storage is as big of a deal as people make it out to be. Yes, you can root your phone to store apps on the SD card, but in my experience, you don't need to. I don't have hard numbers, but it seems like Android apps clock in at a much smaller size than iPhone apps. Most of the apps I download tend to be between 100k to 700k, with some apps at a meg or two. As I said, I don't know how that exactly compares to iPhone apps, but I'm more than an "average" user of my phone and I've yet to run into a space limitation because of the apps I have installed.

more than 4 years ago

Some Claim Android App Store Worse Than iPhone's

MBoffin What a shocker. (289 comments)

You mean an app market whose sole audience is made up of people who have already resigned themselves to shelling out more money than other people will generate more revenue? Mind. Blown.

more than 4 years ago


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