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Comments

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"Barbie: I Can Be a Computer Engineer" Pulled From Amazon

Minupla Re:The one woman is the Barbie brand manager (555 comments)

Well since the publication date was 2010, I'm not sure we can blame Jean for this one.

I'm very happy that my daughter gets angry and pissed off whenever anyone suggests something is a boy toy or a girl toy tho. (Drive thru at McD's is rough!)

Min

about a week ago
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Ask Slashdot: Dealing With VoIP Fraud/Phishing Scams?

Minupla Re:This is a legal matter. (159 comments)

Yep, a call to my corporate legal dept would be my first move in this situation. It's amazing how many situations got deescalated when we got the other party on the phone with my legal dept on the line.

Min

about two weeks ago
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MARS, Inc: We Are Running Out of Chocolate

Minupla My Wife's response: (323 comments)

My Wife's response:

"OK that's it, I'm cutting you and the kid off. More for me!!!"

Min

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Who's the Doctors Without Borders of Technology?

Minupla Re: Check your local community first (112 comments)

I did YKnet around the same era then, out of Whitehorse. Set up an 8 line dial up pop in Old Crow, using bound analog sat channels.

I also did a stint down in the Eastern Carribean. I remember the bribes, favors, etc required to get a UPS from the dock to our building, and members of our team blocking off the main drag in town while we used the (borrowed) cargo forklift from the docks to lift the UPS up the side of the building. While we were discussing how to get it in the window the forklift driver disappeared, leaving the UPS balancing on top of a power pole. Driver was asleep under the lift. Waiting for the ex-pats to make up their minds.

Cricket games were something else too!

Min

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Who's the Doctors Without Borders of Technology?

Minupla Re: Check your local community first (112 comments)

Heyya - just a quick tip of the hat - sounds like we got started much the same way. What part of the Canadian frontier you tame? Yukon here, early 90s with a NPO.

Min

about two weeks ago
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Android 5.0 Makes SD Cards Great Again

Minupla Re:At last. (214 comments)

I manage this using xprivacy module under xposed. It allows you to whitelist an application for any subtree under where it's requesting access. Works well for me. More work of course, but security tends to be more work.

Min

about three weeks ago
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Flaw in New Visa Cards Would Let Hackers Steal $1M Per Card

Minupla Re:Just ask your bank to send you (126 comments)

proper Faraday cage has to have no gaps,

Acutally not quite accurate - a faraday cage that blocks at all wavelengths would need to have a very small mesh. Rule of thumb is you want your mesh to be less then 1/4(c/freq) m.

Since freq in the case of NFC is 13.56 MHz, that will yield us with 22/4=5.5 meters (excuse the rounding, you get the point) so anything you can wrap around your wallet is going to do the trick.

Google NFC blocking wallets for some selections.

Source: I attend hacker conferences. All my credit cards are NFC enabled. I don't want to have conversations with my CC company that starts with "I was at Defcon when..." - those don't end well!

about three weeks ago
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Rite Aid and CVS Block Apple Pay and Google Wallet

Minupla Re:Good luck with that. (558 comments)

Actually, post Chip+Pin (and RFID interact flash for that matter) this sort of attack isn't possible. That's because the chip inside the card creates a unique one time approval for the transaction. The approval is un-replayable,

At worst, attack wise, you might be able to perform a turnstile attack on it (Interac flash reader, taped to a turnstile say), but transactions over Interac flash are capped at under 100$ and every 5 transactions you have to re-auth with a full chip and pin, so the banks' risk is pretty limited there.

Disclaimer: I've not done an indepth analysis of the security controls myself. I know there were some weaknesses in the Euro implementation around not signing the list of allowable transaction verification mechanisms or somesuch (look up the blackhat talk if you need to know) but it's a LOT more difficult these days then inserting a skimmer on the terminal and video recording the pin. (Interac was always two factor, until interac flash).

Min

about a month ago
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Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard

Minupla Re:Until we upgrade the dumb bunnies (384 comments)

World wide 2013 air crash fatalities: 29
World wide 2010 traffic crash fatalities 1,250,000 (est)

So unless you're going to argue that I'm 4310300% more likely to walk away from a fatal car crash, we're better off spending money there, looking at it from an objective point of view.

Fear drives us to make poor decisions. I fly a lot, but I understand that I'm just as dead from making an error at 70 mph as I would be asleep in my seat when the back end falls off my 737. Just 4310300% more likely to experience the former then the latter.

*disclaimer: Yes, I know, I mixed statistics from 2013 and 2010 above. I was too lazy to go back and find 2010 air crash statistics, but I seriously doubt it impacts the statistical analysis any more then the rounding error in the world wide traffic fatality stat.

Min

about a month ago
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Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard

Minupla Re:Until we upgrade the dumb bunnies (384 comments)

On traffic safety, agreed, long term, autonomous cars are the way to go. Some of the answer there is time and market forces, but I suspect a billion or two from the war on terrorism could move that along nicely. Faster technology evaluation and approval pipeline, more money for NSF funded core research, etc. But nearer term there are technologies that exist in high end cars that would lower traffic fatalities tomorrow if available in all cars. Blindspot object detection, lane departure alerts, etc. If the concern is about an objective attempt to lower the number of people who die each year, a dollar spent in this area is going to save more people than a dollar spent in airport security.

On diseases, if you're talking about a billion dollars to paradrop a few thousand doctors into africa to do contact tracing, then you have my support. If on the other hand you're discussing mobilizing the national guard to protect North America from Ebola, not so much, spend the money on the flu, which kills many more people world wide. If we do the right things in Africa, Ebola will never be more then a hideous way for a couple of people to die in the US. This is one of those situations where the "Protect the Homeland" mantra is worse then useless.

Min

about a month ago
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Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard

Minupla Re:Until we upgrade the dumb bunnies (384 comments)

There must be an optimal level of security

If we wanted to actually make people safer we'd take very dollar we spend on airport security and Ebola beyond contact tracking, containment and isolation/care for the infected and spend it on:

1) Traffic safety
2) Finding better ways to fight the flu

Those two things would be way more impactful in terms of lives saved then the money being spent to keep air travel safe from terrorists and mobilizing the national guard to fight Ebola (not sure how they're going to do that, absent a shrink machine, Fantastic Voyage style).

Min

about a month ago
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Positive Ebola Test In Second Texas Health Worker

Minupla Re:Just tell me (463 comments)

As I understand it, EBOV (and all other currently known strains of the Ebola family for that matter) transmits using a subset of the flu transmissions mechanisms, so if you're safe from the flu, you should be safe from EBOV too.

Min

about a month and a half ago
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Possible Reason Behind Version Hop to Windows 10: Compatibility

Minupla Re:I call hogwash (349 comments)

I did a bit of RTFAing and clicked through a link and found some examples:

MaxPathLength.java in ManagedRuntimeInitiative (git://github.com/GregBowyer/ManagedRuntimeInitiative.git) Show 2 matches

                        isWindows = true;
                          if (osName.startsWith("Windows 9") ||
                                  osName.startsWith("Windows Me"))

So there's at least some real world examples. Not totally hogwash methinks.

Min

about 2 months ago
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Hundreds of Police Agencies Distributing Spyware and Keylogger

Minupla Re:Parenting (72 comments)

Oh gods, I hope her behavior changes in 10 years! She'll be 16 then!

 

about 2 months ago
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Hundreds of Police Agencies Distributing Spyware and Keylogger

Minupla Parenting (72 comments)

It comes down to knowing your kid.

I have a 6 yr old too. If she sees me looking at something on the computer, she'll come up, looking away and say "Daddy, is that kid appropriate?" before looking. I have no concerns that she'll break the rules, so I don't feel the need for any preventive controls. If I had a child with a different temperament I would react differently of course. For what its worth, my day job involves ensuring that people employed by my company are safe on the internet. Generally my 6 yr old is better behaved :)

about 2 months ago
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Newly Discovered Asteroid To Pass Within Geostationary Orbit Sunday

Minupla Re:3:2 resonance (101 comments)

you'll want a more accurate simulator!

Quick! Load Kerbal Space Program!

about 3 months ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

Minupla Re:Will the cameras work? (643 comments)

Or discourage the abuse from occurring in the first place, which is even better.

If the officer has to think "OK, I'm going to have to find a way to deal with the video camera" then maybe they don't do whatever it is that would require dealing with the camera.

That would suit me fine.

about 3 months ago
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Least Secure Cars Revealed At Black Hat

Minupla Re:They did not hack it (140 comments)

Here's the difference - we have firewalls on the Internet.

What they're saying is that the Bluetooth is sitting on the same network as your anti-lock brakes and there is no firewall.

Not sure about you, but where I work, if I didn't put a firewall between the internet, and my web servers and at least one more between my web servers and the database, I'd be looking for a new job. These guys hooked it up to the "internet" (bluetooth) and decided they didn't need any additional security between there and the "database" (your brakes).

Security is all about layers, and they've said that Bluetooth is all the security your health and safety critical systems needs. Not sure about you, but that doesn't leave me with a warm and fuzzy feeling.

Min

about 4 months ago
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Exodus Intelligence Details Zero-Day Vulnerabilities In Tails OS

Minupla Re:They have no accountability (132 comments)

Agreed - and in this case "Hackers" == "Nation Sates"

about 4 months ago

Submissions

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Minupla Minupla writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Minupla writes "I've been asked to put together a new IT dept in a regional office. Among other things, I'm going to need to put together a set of tools, both hardware and software for my department. So that got me to thinking "What things have other geeks found handy in doing their jobs?" So how about it? What tool in your kit would you never want to do without?"

Journals

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The year in review

Minupla Minupla writes  |  more than 10 years ago

Wow what a year.

I appologize for the long delay between journies, for the few people I know who check up on me in here.

First in late June, I got an older sister. Yep, you read that right. It turns out that my mother had a daughter before I was born, whom she adopted out at birth. The result of a marriage that failed on their way to the alter.

This seriously shook me, as one might imagine. She's a good person and fits in well with the insane state of the rest of my family though, so all's well that ends well.

Then this fall a job application I dropped off hit pay dirt, and after several interviews, I've accepted a job in the Carribean! So a mountian of paperwork is currently burrying me, as you might imagine! :)

So if any of you would like a postcard when I make landfall in the land of no snow, drop me a line here, or ICQ, or email, with a snail mail address and I'll drop one in the mail to you as soon as sanity restores itself (at an improbability level of 1:1.24*10^10000000 against) I'll fire off some postcards of pretty beaches :)

Min.

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Thinking to myself

Minupla Minupla writes  |  more than 12 years ago

If a journal gets written and noone is there to read it, does it consume harddrive space?

It's a bizzare world we live in these days, and I haven't felt like writing in here for a long time. Although I live in a different country, sept 11 hit us here too. It was surreal for several days after the 11th. I had a job interview on the 13th, I had to travel by passanger boat to the interview. Usually the boat has children running around talking excitedly, the usual burble of adult conversations, ecetra. Not on the 13th. The whole trip was a surreal silence. Children sat silently beside their parents, occasionally looking toward their mothers and fathers, as if understanding that the world had changed, and not for the better, and willing their parents to make it all better.

Even in Canada, I was touched by the tragity. Friends of mine lived in a city that had a suspicious plane land, in the far north. They came over the radio and announced that everyone should head to high ground out of the city incase the highjackers decide to take the plane into the hydro-electric dam just upstream of the city.

My friend's daughter was in NYC not a week earlier and had bought tickets to a performance in the WTC.

My cousin was just across the water, and saw the planes hit. She was down there on a work trip.

I had come in second in a job competition that would have had me in the WTC on the 11th, and my Fiance had planned to work at the bookstore in the basement.

And I was one of the remotely effected people. I didn't actualy know anyone who died on Sept 11.

I wrote this on Sept 15th in my paper journal.

To all my friends and relitives in the US, my thoughts are with you.

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Wow, my first journal entry

Minupla Minupla writes  |  more than 12 years ago

"Reflections on a Conversation with 'Angie'"

First allow me to note that the excerpts from my conversation are used with her express permission. They were personal thoughts and I would not have dreamed of reprinting them without that permission.

I was travelling home from the movies tonight, and waiting for the bus at Georgia and Granville, when I was approached by a young lady, asking for some spare change. Before I could respond with my now practiced evasions, (it is strange how it's one of the first things you learn when you live in the big city), she offers to read me some of her poetry. This is new, and I've got time to burn before the bus arrives. I accept her offer, not supplying the change. She proceeds to recite from memory for 4 minutes poetry much better than I, with my college education ever could have written.

I hand her what money I have on me, and bid that she take a seat and talk with me for awhile until my bus shows up. She's obviously not your stereotypical street person, and I want to hear her story, and felt that I'd just paid much more to hear some producer's made up story, I could certainly spare a few dollars to hear her real one.

Except for a shift in economic status, it could have been my story. She started lower so when her family crashed, she ended lower, and didn't have my aptitudes to fall back on. She told me stories of protecting her little sister from her dad, and how eventually they left him, opting to live on the streets rather then continue to accept the abuse. She told me of a boyfriend who wanted her to push dust, and her refusal to inflict that on other innocent people. She also told me of the punishment she received for this refusal.

Part way through the stories, I stopped listening so closely and listened to the tone of her voice, and watched her bearing. This was a young lady (of all of 18 years old!) who had the confidence, and self-assurance of any professional I've ever dealt with. I questioned her about this. She responded "There comes a time when you have to make a decision, you undergo abuse from your parents, and you have to decide, you can either be like them or you can learn from them. I thank my father for giving me the example not to follow."

Eventually, as many conversations like this in my life have gone of late, the subject of religion came up. I myself am a confirmed fence sitter. I'm agnostic. After having recited a common saying, it occurred to me to inquire as to her belief system. She said, "People need something to keep them going. It can be anything. If believing in a God does it for them, more power to them, it could be a doorknob they believe in, and that would be fine too." So I asked, "And what keeps you going Angie?". Her response was, "I want to see where this train stops. That and taking care of my little sister." At about this point, my bus pulled up, and Angie pointed it out. I quickly scribbled my email addy "bofh@ufies.org" on a scrap of paper and handed to her, noting that if she was ever in a position to access the net, to please drop me a line, and stepped out of her world.

Never once during my conversation with her did she express more then a quick thanks, and never did she indicate that more money would be appreciated, this would have been beneath her dignity, she had what she needed, and in return she gave freely of what I requested, conversation.

So, as I sit on the bus on my way home trying desperately to type this into the laptop while it's still fresh in my mind. I ask myself, "What has this changed about me? What does Angie have to teach me?"

I think we take people for granted. Here's a lady that if you read her story in a fictional tale you'd go, "Ya, OK, but who can believe the character?" These people exist in real life. And you find them where you least expect to find them. When I logged out of #UF tonight and decided almost randomly to see 13th floor (good movie, btw, and well worth seeing), I never expected to meet a role model, and certainly never expected for her to be a street person. But in this day and age, I'll take my heroes where I can find them.

Thanks, Angie, and I hope my 10$ bought you a warm place to spend the night, it was more then worth it, and I hope one day you will be in a position to tell your own story, as I'm sure you could do so with much more eloquence then myself.

 

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