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Internet Explorer Vulnerabilities Increase 100%

Qzukk Re:No actual numbers (137 comments)

The article, headline, story and comments are all bullshit.

Assuming the graph is not also bullshit, the correct story is that in the first 6 months of 2014 (1H 2014 on the graph), IE has had more vulnerabilities than all of 2013. IF this keeps up, then by the end of 2014, IE will have had more than a 100% increase in the number of vulnerabilities over last year.

3 days ago

'Just Let Me Code!'

Qzukk Re:"Just let me build a bridge!" (367 comments)

When you want to build a bridge, you don't just throw a bunch of construction workers at it and trust them to make the best judgements, even though you might trust each one of them individually to build a sawhorse or something equally trivial.

You also don't have the president of the company come in and declare that this week we're switching to agile bridge building and fuck six, we're going to seven sigmas so we can be on the bleeding edge and shift our paradigms into high gear to synchronize our release schedule and get out ahead of the pack as we swing around the final stretch into the processification.

4 days ago

Why Are the World's Scientists Continuing To Take Chances With Smallpox?

Qzukk Re:Better safe than sorry (189 comments)

If it's not exactly the same then what we've got wouldn't be very useful.

I'm with the "destroy it" crowd. If someone attacks us with smallpox, nuke the fuck out of them.

5 days ago

New Toyota Helps You Yell At the Kids

Qzukk Re:This would actually be useful the other way aro (205 comments)

But just no, to the conversation mirror - most parents already don't keep their eyes on the road, we don't need to give them another excuse.

Ah, memories of my childhood. Things like my father flying down the freeway at 60 turning around in his seat and screaming "You look at me when I'm talking to you boy!" while everyone else screamed about oncoming traffic.

At the time I learned to drive, I considered my greatest achievement was being able to hold a conversation without looking at the person I'm speaking with.

about a week ago

Domain Registry of America Suspended By ICANN

Qzukk Re:For those that don't know: (112 comments)

If you believe that's not a scam then boy do I have a deal for you! One bridge*, slightly used!

about a week ago

CCP Games Explains Why Virtual Reality First Person Shooters Still Don't Work

Qzukk Re:barf (154 comments)

That's also seen in bad console ports, by the way.

I've long since overcome my motion sickness (mom's van came with multiple barf buckets), but watching the screen move like I flicked google maps and it slowly pans to a stop (especially in any kind of curved motion) tickles the part of my brain that says "stop that, it's trying to make you sick".

about two weeks ago

LibreSSL PRNG Vulnerability Patched

Qzukk Re:This is not how you inspire confidence (151 comments)

Only if the master process quit after forking twice. This is not typical

No, this IS typical. The double fork allows the original process to interact with the user ("Enter your private key password:"), then exit and return 0 to the init script so init can print [ OK ] on your console.

The middle process needs to close file descriptors and do other cleanup then fork and die, causing the final process to become re-parented to init. Init then becomes responsible for cleaning it up if it dies, so it won't become a zombie.

Step-by-step "how to daemon" guide here.

about two weeks ago

Sony Forgets To Pay For Domain, Hilarity Ensues

Qzukk Re:Black hole? (277 comments)

This is apparently my president's nightmare because he will call me at midnight and ask me when our domains and SSL certs expire.

about two weeks ago

LibreSSL PRNG Vulnerability Patched

Qzukk Re:This is not how you inspire confidence (151 comments)

OpenSSL's RNG is used in many places separately from the SSL communication protocol itself, sometimes just for encryption in general (S/MIME) or sometimes someone just wants really random bytes.

Many servers fork twice in order to reparent to init, repeated forking is a common idiom in unixland.

Apache with MPM-prefork forks a bunch of children from a master process, which is typically itself a descendant of apachectl. In apache's case, this shouldn't be a problem since the "master-process-rng" would have recognized the fork and reinitialized on the first openssl connection, so the children are protected because they cannot have the same PID as the master-process.

Where it would be a problem would be an application or daemon that starts up, initializes the RNG, forks twice, then without this fork touching the RNG, starts forking children to do something random (say, encrypting one file per process or establishing a single SSL connection per process or something). Without having the RNG reset by the master process, one in 65534 or so processes will have the exact same RNG, because it will have inherited the original RNG untouched and be assigned the PID that created the RNG.

about two weeks ago

Rand Paul and Silicon Valley's Shifting Political Climate

Qzukk Re:Rand Paul's a plagiarizing misogynistic racist (533 comments)

with fewer regulations for everyone

Ahahaha whoa there now, slow down sonny. Those regulations are there for a reason, mostly to keep people from competing against me and to make sure that nobody smokes anything I wouldn't openly admit to smoking. Let's back up to that low taxes thing.

about two weeks ago

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

Qzukk Re:Reconcile these two sentences please. (502 comments)

performance impact or benefit

When gaming, performance = Frames Per Second. It was neither positively nor negatively changed by using a discrete sound card.

about two weeks ago

Today In Year-based Computer Errors: Draft Notices Sent To Men Born In the 1800s

Qzukk Re:Lessons not learned (205 comments)

I went across the street and told my elderly neighbours (both have since passed) who had survived the great depression and served in world war 2 that no, they had seen worse in the world, and it wasn't going to end, all they had to do was change the batteries in their smoke detectors and get a good nights sleep.

Well THERE'S the problem right there! Your neighbors were in charge of fixing the DMV's software!

about two weeks ago

Researchers Develop New Way To Steal Passwords Using Google Glass

Qzukk Re:cant break all (116 comments)

this wouldn't be able to break iPhone fingerprint sensor

a $5 wrench does that if you need it bad enough...the biggest issue is getting a good print to make it from

"Here, hold this wrench a second"

about three weeks ago

Airbus Patents Windowless Cockpit That Would Increase Pilots' Field of View

Qzukk Re: Failsafe? (468 comments)

The worse thing that could happen to a view screen is that it gets so smashed up

Well, no, the worst thing is that it falls out, and so does the pilot.

about three weeks ago

Judge Frees "Cannibal Cop" Who Shared His Fantasies Online

Qzukk Re:No "thought police"? What about "hate crimes"? (185 comments)

Except that the crime is assault. I think it shouldn't be a charge of its own, but I see no problem with a zeroth degree murder charge or assault with a racist insult.

about three weeks ago

Why the Hobby Lobby Decision is good for the Left Wing

Qzukk Re:I think the next step will be more interesting (14 comments)

what happens if no insurance companies want to offer a plan that does that?

The solution that Alito cited that was in place for religious non-profit and church organizations was for the insurance company to be required to pay for the drugs out of their own pockets and establish a separate pool of money for doing so, that the religious institutions would not pay into. The government considered this to be acceptable because the drugs are cheaper than pregnancy care so the insurance company would save money. The next step will be Christian Brothers Services (a religious health insurance company) suing against being forced to pay for this from their own pocket.

Once that plays out, this decision may end up having little to do with contraception or abortion. In the majority opinion, authored by Alito, he claims their decision only covers contraception, but the only citation he has to prove this is his say-so. The RFRA does not specify any limits on the ability to practice religion (indeed, that was the point of it, it originally existed so that Native Americans can ignore the Controlled Substances Act when it comes to peyote) beyond a "compelling government interest".

Alito's decision that "for-profits should be given the same religious options as non-profits" is an obvious one with respect to this particular case where the government has already given an alternate option to other companies, but it's clear from the situation leading to the passage of the law (Native Americans smoking peyote) that when there is no "alternative option", the intent of the law is to allow "the religious" to ignore laws that would prevent them from practicing their religion.

What will likely happen is one of three things:

1) Nobody pushes their luck. The elephant just sits there, in the corner of the room, and nobody ever mentions it again.
2) Someone declares ___ is preventing them from practicing their religion and sues. A court of appeals cites the text of Alito's decision that this can only apply to abortion and squashes it, SCOTUS refuses certioari.
3) Someone declares ___ is preventing them from practicing their religion and sues and ends up heard by the supreme court. Either
A) The court has to decide that Alito was wrong and the RFRA/First Amendment protects more than just your stance on abortion, and places no limit on it
B) The court cites the text of Alito's decision and denies that practice with no further explanation. Or perhaps the court decides that "interstate trade" is a "compelling government interest".
C) The court has to establish a yardstick by which the sincerity of your beliefs are measured. You skipped church for the Superbowl? Mmmhmmm, I see...

about three weeks ago

Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

Qzukk Re:how is that supposed to work? (579 comments)

Actually, I've personally witnessed drivers screw up at these intersections by watching the wrong cues. A few months ago a driver rolled out into the middle of the intersection because they thought that when the cross traffic light turned red, our light would turn green (no, the left-turn only lane light goes first after cross traffic). I know that's what they did because I was watching the light too, except this is the last intersection before I get home so I know what the light pattern is. Because the light pattern changes depending on time of day and whatever bug crawled up the traffic engineer's ass that week, when you're watching the other lights, you still have to verify your light before you go.

Ideally we'd get our own countdown timer to let us know whenever the signal is going to change. Staring at a red light for 45 seconds is boring, you can go ahead and insist that we change human nature, or you can go with human nature and give us something to pay attention to.

about three weeks ago

Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

Qzukk Re:How about a sign (579 comments)

How about doing what other countries do and giving drivers our own damn timers to let us know when our lights are going to change?

about three weeks ago

Why the Hobby Lobby Decision is good for the Left Wing

Qzukk Re:I suspect not. (14 comments)

Smart quips and Burma Shave aside, I feel that neither you nor I are qualified for this particular Judgeship.

about a month ago

Happy Software Developers Solve Problems Better

Qzukk Re:Introducing HappyLang++ (121 comments)

Now that you've proposed it, someone's going to hack a language entirely out of smileys.

about a month ago


Qzukk hasn't submitted any stories.



Holy shitballs, slashdot. Malicious ads being served up.

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  3 days ago

Love is over.

I was redirected to which dropped a java_installer.exe into my Downloads folder from some ad playing on around 2:30PM central time 7/24


Serious proposals to replace obamacare begin

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about 8 months ago

The WSJ has floated an opinion piece offering what it calls a conservative alternative to Obamacare, that I think is the first time I've seen any conservative alternative except "Nuh-Uh!" Google news popped it up with a link to which seems to be some sort of glorified rss feed with an HTML skin, so I have no idea if the link will be good for anyone else in the future.

It is, in my opinion, a beginning. In the past, I've called obamacare the wrong answer to the wrong question. This article suggests extending the current employer tax writeoff so that everyone, not just the employers, can buy insurance with tax-free money. Then it goes a step further by means-testing a tax credit for the poor so they can buy privately operated insurance with their tax credit instead of getting Medicaid. I think this is a good start to answering the question of how to make it possible for everyone to get at least minimal health insurance (if they want it. This is the conservative version, remember).

It is still the wrong question, though.


2.8 seconds of hate - bash-completion

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about 9 months ago

In an effort to be fancy and helpful, bash now has context aware tab completion (in the bash-completion package on Debian). Based on where you are and what command you're typing, pressing tab will Do (what the completion script writer thought was) The Right Thing.

Unless what you think is the right thing was was the behavior of older versions of bash where you could do


and (eventually, ** is damn slow) get a list of all of the matching files. It also worked with [...] {...} ? or any of the other bash wildcards. You know, just in case you wanted to see what your command is going to do before you hit enter.

Now I have to ^U, ls ^Y, then ^Y, which takes about 2.8 seconds (including the realization that bash is just going to keep beeping at me if I keep hitting tab). Or disable fancy and helpful completion with complete -r


Two minutes of WTF

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year ago

So I right clicked in an explorer window in windows 7 and went to "New >" on the menu and the submenu didn't open. I clicked it a few more times and nothing happened. I clicked it a few more times and the entire explorer shell crashed and restarted.

Wish I knew why the hell it sometimes takes 30+ seconds to get to "New Word Document" on my work computer.


2 minutes of love: how to properly notify users of an update

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year ago

Ran today and a popup appeared letting me know there was a new version. It had two buttons:

  1. Install when I exit
  2. Install now

This is doing it right.


2 mins of hate: What can make me switch to a new RCS again

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  1 year,4 days

Three words: Four. Way. Diff.

Show me where my patch (before and after) conflicted with the last patch (via blame) before and after. Bonus points if you can show both complete commit messages. Extra bonus points if you look at the branch, figure out where it went wrong (at what point did my patch last apply cleanly?) and show me all the commits since.

Telling me shit's fucked up doesn't help anyone (that's what I got with cvs).

Telling me what I was trying to do tells me what I was trying to do, not what Bob was doing when he checked in before me, but at least I know what the hell I was doing when I did it months/years ago (this is where I am now with git rebase).

Telling me what the hell I was trying to do and what the hell Bob was trying to do, now that's what I need, because now I know what it's supposed to be doing when I'm done merging the code and can do so with a reasonable degree of confidence that both Bob and I will be happy with the result.

For my company's workflow, this would be the holy grail of revision control. I'd even be tempted to use a graphical tool to do it.


Today's two minutes of hate

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  1 year,11 days

git, a love/hate relationship. Right now, hating really really hard.

You can do all sorts of incredible things with it, but there's so much that seems obvious I ought to be able to do, but just can't see how.

Case in point: git rebase. This is an incredibly powerful tool that lets you take changes and apply them to a different branch, one at a time very rapidly (if there are no conflicts). If a conflict arises, the process pauses, tells you where it died, lets you fix it, then you git rebase --continue. EXCEPT you get half of the first line of the commit message (despite being on a 128 column terminal it cuts off at 80) and no hash or any other way (I can find) to look up the complete description of the current commit being fixed (other than aborting the whole thing, going through the complete log to find the commit starting with whatever message then starting again (rerere makes this not painful, just annoying)). Oh, and if you used a branch name, that branch name is MOVED to the new location.

Other case in point: git merge. This is an incredibly powerful tool that throws everything together all at once and lets you deal with the aftermath. Conflicts, conflicts everywhere and no explanation of what the code is supposed to be doing. Fortunately, someone made a git-merge-like-rebase script that creates a temporary branch, rebases it to the target, then deletes the temporary branch leaving you with the original branch where it was (like merge) but applying one commit at a time (like rebase).

Still, I just took 2 hours of work doing something that would have taken 2 days in CVS, thanks to git rebase (rolling out a new version of our code for one of our customers with a heavily customized application. Rebased their custom branch onto our new release branch, fixed all the conflicts where they want customers sorted firstname lastname or blinking red lights or whatever and done). Probably could have done it in 1:30 if I didn't have to go back through the log to figure out how to fix "Change order of fields so that customer rep appears before ". I'm working in more and more tricks to reduce conflicts every upgrade so hopefully I'll have it down to less than an hour soon.

So now I love it again.


Life post Google-Reader

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  1 year,23 days

So Google followed through on their threat to kill Reader and I ended up having to track down a new RSS feed reader. Having been bitten by the Cloud, I decided it'd have to be locally installed, after trying a few I've settled on FeedDemon (now discontinued, a shame) as "best so far".

The one thing I really, really miss about Google Reader (which in fact was the reason I started bothering with RSS in the first place) is that it had a bookmark you could set that would open the URL of the next unread item in your queue. Dragged the bookmark to the bar, and one click gets me to read something new and exciting (and middle click to read lots of new and exciting things in tabs). Sure, every time someone published an RSS entry without a URL google gave me a 500 error and marked every single article read, but hey, it was damned convenient when it didn't implode.

FeedDemon gives me a link to click on each article to open in its (embedded IE) browser, but as I go down the list of articles it doesn't automatically remove the read ones nor does it automatically add new unread articles unless I manually refresh the article list (maybe I'm doing it wrong?). It has a "Next Unread" button but it doesn't open the URL, it just shows the RSS item header and then I have to click it to open the URL.

Strongly considering taking some of what I learned in the Coursera python class a while back, this feed parsing library, and learning wxPython (platform independence!) and spinning my own. It won't do much, but it WILL have a button that launches a chosen browser with the chosen URL (thinking of making it a systray icon: left click to open next item, right click for menu, blinks when there are unread articles).

It could even pop up a window to display an article with no URL.


20 seconds of hate: outlook, *again*

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year ago

Hello, Microsoft. Please explain to me the reasoning why when a meeting is sent to people, they get a blank email with an .ics file attached, which is absolutely fucking useless to everyone not using a calendar app?


BTW, yes, I know about the option to turn ical off, explain to me why the FUCK you are incapable of sending a readable email with an attachment.


Today's two minutes of hate

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year ago

In every version of it Outlook I've used, it stands out as being terrible at dealing with email in general (aside from the various exploits just from opening malformed emails). It's got rules that cancel themselves because the computer just woke from sleep and isn't connected to the internet (and therefore the rules are "invalid") to having a hojillion different sources of email addresses, none of them configurable or editable (Seriously, why can't I fix a misspelling in an email once it's been saved wherever the hell it gets saved?). Autocompletion of email addresses is a complete clusterfuck. I had to delete a customer from my contact list completely and start over because her email address changed and when I edited her contact, her record refused to come up when I'm sending an email (Doesn't come up when I type, doesn't come up in the contact list when I press the "To" button, but if I write her email by hand and choose "Look Up Outlook Contact" bam there she is complete with name and company information)

If it weren't for Exchange, I'd have ditched this shit long ago. Sadly, it's still the best I've got at dealing with scheduling meetings (at least as long as they're in our own time zone).


Today's two minutes of hate (yay backups!)

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year ago

So years ago I needed a backup drive for my home computer after the last backup drive up and died on me, so I was possessed by idiocy and decided to get one of those external RAID blocks with two drives in it, RAID-1. Worked fine for years, now it's got a red blinking light on it and doesn't show up to the system anymore.

This is one of those things where foresight would have said "Hey, why are you spending 3x as much on drives when you're going to be stuck with a box with one red light to tell you there is a problem and no way to find out what the problem is". Hindsight says I'm an idiot.

At least it's just a backup.

Maybe next I'll get a LTO drive for a few thousand bucks for shits and giggles. Of course we had one of those at work that ate a tape. Better get two and take redundant backups...


Today's two minutes of hate

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year ago

God damn where do I get a fucking ftp server that can run a command after an upload without preaching to me about how insecure yadda yadda yadda. I'm not running a goddamned anonymous ftp site (and even if I was, MAYBE I'd like to have a virus scanner run on whatever bullshit goes in and out!)

Currently using ProFTPd because mod_sftp appears to be the only way to get an sftp server with virtual users on Linux without using OpenSSH+PAM voodoo. mod_exec runs programs on every single little command EXCEPT the completion of an upload because fuck you. The documentation suggests logging to a FIFO and writing a program to read lines from the FIFO and acting on each line of the log. Great, only two problems: 1) proftpd shits itself if nothing is listening to the FIFO which means the listening program has to immediately reopen the socket when logrotate restarts proftpd 2) proftpd's xferlog format can't be changed and rather than doing any sane quoting, replaces spaces in filenames with underscores because fuck you.


30 minutes of hate

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year and a half ago

I just spent 4 hours doing onsite customer training for a customer of ours who is transitioning from an ancient terminal-based software to our software. These customers had therefore bought all new laptops with all new Windows 8 to replace their old terminals. The decision to use laptops had been made because 1) the network infrastructure in place currently ran the terminals which were actually win95 computers plugged into a local network and using telnet to reach the server so wireless was necessary until the old equipment could be removed and 2) the computers running the old system needed to stay there until after the training was complete and they were ready to switch.

I estimate 30 minutes of that time was spent unfucking shit that went wrong when people who had never seen a GUI or used a touchpad in their life had their palms brush the touchpad and trigger random win8 gestures, opening the charms bar, opening bing, opening the start screen, and in at least one case, somehow closing the program window (or was it open somewhere but alt-tab no longer works in windows 8? Damned if I know!)

For the next round of training tomorrow I plan on disabling the gestures. Easy peasy, just a few SynTPEnh\ZoneConfig registry entries to change. And they say Windows 8 isn't ready for the desktop!


Today's two minutes of hate, redux

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Customer: Your website is broken, I can't log into it

Me: What exactly do you mean?

Customer: I decided to work from home and when I go to your website it gives me this list of things so I clicked on the first one and it gives me an error when I go there

Me: It sounds like you put the address into google and clicked on someone else's site.

Customer: Well, what search engine am I supposed to use?

At this point, I was about to say "well, lady, whichever search engine that links to the actual website when you type into it" but then I realized the answer was "none of them". After all, how would you get people to click on your ads if you took them where they really intended to go?

I explained to her about Ctrl-L and pressing it before typing in a website. I think she got it.


Silly SQL trick

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Tonight's task is to manually categorize a rather flat tree structure in SQL (currently two levels only) by reading the top level entry and assigning it and its children to a category. On a lark I gave this a shot:

update tree set category=1 where 5 in (id,parent);

and it worked in PostgreSQL.

Why? Because I'm sitting here reading the list of top-level entries in one window while using psql in the other and pressing up to edit the previous query. Before I tried that I had

update tree set category=1 where id=4 or parent=4

so I'd have to retype TWO numbers instead of just one.


Today's two minutes of hate

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Today's rage divides evenly between:

  1. people who type site addresses into the search box instead of the address bar
  2. for not putting "join a meeting" link on their search engine landing pages

That's 15 minutes of my life I'll never get back.


Today's two minutes of hate

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Windows Media Player is a flaming pile of shit.

Trying to copy notes from a webinar, and every time I press the pause button in WMP the video keeps playing for another couple of seconds. When you add to this the fact that it takes WMP a couple of seconds before it will start the video again when I'm trying to click on the bar to seek, the tooltip on the bar is "Seek" rather than the time it's going to jump to when I click it, and the fact that there's no x0.5 or x2 or any other speed control but a jerky skiptastic fast forward button, it all adds up to an enormous hassle.

This is turning a task that SHOULD have taken a bit more than 30 minutes (the length of the video) into something I've spent the whole morning on. Good going folks!

After failing to get it to work in MPC or VLC, I managed to get it working in mplayer, but apparently it's only seekable to the nearest 5 minutes or so in there, which probably means that the g2m4 codec put next to no keyframes in the video. But at least mplayer has speed control so I can cover the ground I've already covered quickly, and when I press the space bar it stops immediately.



Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about 2 years ago

UI Elements that only operate when the stars are properly aligned annoy the hell out of me. Especially when they do something I want to do on a regular basis. All those grayed out menu items with no hints as to how to activate them are one thing, at least you know there's something there you can use, but sometimes there's things that make absolutely no sense at all...

If you're using the current Chrome, right click the reload button. OK, now open the developer console (Ctrl+Shift+J). Right click the reload button again. An option to dump cache and reload! Pretty cool, eh?

I don't even know what the fuck inspired me to try right clicking the reload button in the first place...


Election Campaign Forecast

Qzukk Qzukk writes  |  about 2 years ago

On the Democrat side, I expect to see more "adjustments" in the jobless rate. On November 7th, we'll be back to 9%.

On the Republican side, I expect to see more refineries have mysterious fires, power outages, and pipeline closures. On November 7th, they'll all suddenly be fixed.

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