Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



Jenny McCarthy: "I Am Not Anti-Vaccine'"

SecurityGuy Re:Why do people listen to her? (576 comments)

Essentially I believe that it could be harmful for young babies/toddlers to have too many vaccines administered at the same time - 3 vaccines during the same office visit, for example. I can only imagine how many adults would opt for several shots at the same time.

This is exactly the problem. You believe that based on what? This adult would opt for several shots at the same time. Saves me another trip to the doctor and possibly another copay.

I'm surprised the amount of negativity the community has presented on this subject.

Irrationality can be very annoying. We have this amazing thing called science that lets us tease truth out of nature, and a vocal subset of the population wants to go back to the dark ages of superstition and fear. This is frustrating when the consequences are entirely predictable, and include helpless kids getting sick or dying.

But we need to find the cause for autism.

On that, I couldn't agree more. The Wakefields and McCarthys of the world have done incalculable harm in dragging us down this blind alley.

2 days ago

60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

SecurityGuy Re:Kind of states the problem with electric. No no (544 comments)

When my old MX-3 was new, it was nearly silent. I was in a parking lot and saw some friends of mine. I drove up literally within 2 feet of them before they heard me.

Internal combustion cars can be darn near silent, too. I'm not aware of any requirement that they make some minimum of noise. Even if there is, cars moving at speed may not be making enough noise for you to hear before they hit you.

about two weeks ago

60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

SecurityGuy Re:Because Hollywood. (544 comments)

They hop in their car, step on the gas, and rush off from a standstill. Sure, visually you can see it's a soft shoulder, but audibly, your brain hasn't bothered to think about dirt or gravel noises. The first sound most audiences associate with a fast departure like that is a squealing tire.

Yes, but why do people think that? Could it be because they've seen it on TV? Having driven cars pretty hard in my youth, they just don't do some of the things you guys make them do. You're filling in the sounds people expect to hear, but we only expect to hear them because someone else put them there before, causing us to hear them.

Fights are another example. Nobody sounds like that when they get hit.

about two weeks ago

A Third of Consumers Who Bought Wearable Devices Have Ditched Them

SecurityGuy Re:I can wear my phone just fine, in a pocket (180 comments)

A device as heavy as a phone in a pocket while running is annoyingly unpleasant. I have a stretchy belt that holds mine snugly so it doesn't bounce. I suppose I'm agreeing with you. I don't need a wearable smart phone, I just need to wrap a thing around my smart phone which makes it wearable.

Also, I don't have to track my fitness, because I am usually there myself to observe my fitness with my own eyes.

Eh, what works for you and what works for others are just different things. I can observe my own fitness right now, but having actually tracked it for years, it's nice now and again to be reminded that I'm in a lot better shape than when I started. Also, gamification works. I was surprised that once my company started giving us not really enough money to care about to wear one of those devices, I changed my behavior to get the rewards. For some people, tracking your fitness correlates with improving your fitness.

about two weeks ago

Smartphone Kill-Switch Could Save Consumers $2.6 Billion

SecurityGuy Re:Selfphone insurance (218 comments)

Why do people pay to insure anything? Because they weigh the certain small expense vs. the larger but unlikely loss and decide they'd rather the certain small expense. Personally, I insure select phones because while I *can* cough up the money for a full retail replacement if I have to, it'd make me unhappy to do it. Paying $6 or $8 a month, though, is lost in the noise.

I'm about to change that, though, because deductibles have been rising to the point where there's really not much difference between having insurance and not. One of my kids dropped a phone and broke the screen. Deductible: $169. Cost of having it fixed at the mall: $79. I didn't even bother with the claim. At that point, I agree, why bother having insurance?

about two weeks ago

Minnesota Teen Wins Settlement After School Takes Facebook Password

SecurityGuy Re:School admin reach into off-campus life (367 comments)

Agree completely. What schools sometimes fail to understand, or perhaps willfully misunderstand, is that they can't write policy that gives them permission to do anything. Their policies can only limit authority given to them by something else, such as law or parental consent, or direct how they exercise authority given to them by something else.

Personally, I think the American educational system might be a bit better off if they spend more time teaching and less time trying to be parents. It'd also have the nice effect of not convincing bad parents that the schools are there to do their job when they can't be bothered.

about three weeks ago

Ask Slashdot: Fastest, Cheapest Path To a Bachelor's Degree?

SecurityGuy Re:Hi... (370 comments)

This is very true. In my experience, actual work is about getting the job done well enough to serve a particular purpose while academic work was more likely to require delving deeper. The deeper academic delving sometimes really pays off when the real job requires just getting something to work right, right now.

about three weeks ago

Jimmy Wales To 'Holistic Healers': Prove Your Claims the Old-Fashioned Way

SecurityGuy Re:You know what they call alternative medicine... (517 comments)

Meh. That's not really true. There's a reason there's an entire field called evidence-based medicine [wikipedia.org], which from its very name makes it distinct from just plain-old normal "medicine."

"Evidence-based medicine" is simply branding aimed at people who are ignorant of science. If you have any understanding of how science (and therefore the world) works, evidence-based medicine is in amusing or annoying redundant phrase. If you're one of the ignorant multitudes, you might actually pay attention that unlike your bottle of water, er, homeopathic "cure" (designed by a teacher!), evidence-based medicine actually has, you know, evidence to show that it works, not just marketing and endorsements.

That the phrase exists at all shows how badly we've failed at scientific education.

about three weeks ago

Florida Judge Rules IP Address Can't Identify a BitTorrent Pirate

SecurityGuy Re:Ruling good. STORY WRONG. (158 comments)

You can't copy something you don't have.

Sure you can. All you need to do is invent a mechanism for copying a thing you don't have. Perhaps a computer somewhere else that has a bunch of files that you don't have, but will make a copy for you if you ask. Arguing that you can ask for the copy to be made and not be responsible for the making of it is like arguing that you weren't speeding, you were merely pressing on the accelerator.

about three weeks ago

Florida Judge Rules IP Address Can't Identify a BitTorrent Pirate

SecurityGuy Re:Ruling good. STORY WRONG. (158 comments)

You're splitting hairs, too. :-P

If you illegally download a file, it's "pirated". You're saying it can't be proven sometimes. Granted. Facts and proof are different things.

about three weeks ago

Florida Judge Rules IP Address Can't Identify a BitTorrent Pirate

SecurityGuy Re:Ruling good. STORY WRONG. (158 comments)

The courts have never held that doing a straight HTTP/FTP download is infringement, mostly because it's impossible to track down everyone that's doing it.

This is a common error. The law doesn't have to spell out each and every possible method of infringement, just like they don't have to spell out each and every method of murder (with a gun, with an axe, etc). Did you make a copy? Yes. Did you have the permission of the copyright owner, or was it fair use, parody, etc? No? Then it doesn't matter if you copied it with a quill or HTTP or had it sequenced into your DNA.


“Copies” are material objects, other than phonorecords, in which a work is fixed by any method now known or later developed, and from which the work can be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated, either directly or with the aid of a machine or device. The term “copies” includes the material object, other than a phonorecord, in which the work is first fixed.

A work is “fixed” in a tangible medium of expression when its embodiment in a copy or phonorecord, by or under the authority of the author, is sufficiently permanent or stable to permit it to be perceived, reproduced, or otherwise communicated for a period of more than transitory duration. A work consisting of sounds, images, or both, that are being transmitted, is “fixed” for purposes of this title if a fixation of the work is being made simultaneously with its transmission.

That's from 17 USC 101. Maybe you can convince a judge that FTPing something onto your hard drive doesn't qualify, but it seems pretty clear cut to me.

This is the fundamental argument against trying to brand copyright infringement as theft - theft by nature requires something to have been appropriated, taken, or otherwise used in such a manner as it is depriving the original owner of their right to own.

Another common error. I don't argue that it's theft. In fact, in doing a little digging I found that there's case law that establishes precedent that copyright infringement ISN'T theft. But again, I didn't say that it is, just that downloading copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright holder, or fair use exemption, yadda yadda, is copyright infringement.

It's not my intention to get into the philosophical argument here. I can't defend $150,000 statutory damages over downloading a 99 cent song, I'm just pointing out that claiming downloading a 99 cent song is legal without paying for it or otherwise getting a license is wrong by about $149.999.01. The copyright owner doesn't get to sue you because you might have deprived them of a 99 cent sale. They get to sue you because the law says they get to sue you. They even get to sue you for a LOT of money because the law says they can.

I replied to the original poster because so often these discussions boil down to people saying it's ok because $LOGIC and $REASONS and $ETHICS. You're not wrong that downloading a song you'd never buy probably doesn't hurt anyone. It's still illegal, and if you end up in court over it what will matter is what the law actually says, not what you or anyone else thinks it should say.

about three weeks ago

Florida Judge Rules IP Address Can't Identify a BitTorrent Pirate

SecurityGuy Re:Ruling good. STORY WRONG. (158 comments)

This is COMPLETELY wrong.

1. There is no copyright infringement in downloading a file.

Yes, there is. Making a copy, any copy, without permission is copyright infringement except for limited exceptions allowed by law such as fair use.

2. Files are. They just are. They are not "pirated files."

You're splitting hairs. That's like saying there are only cars, not stolen cars.

3. MAKING INFRINGING CONTENT AVAILABLE TO OTHERS is what is considered copyright infringement/distribution

Nope. It's just more worthwhile for content owners to go after those who are distributing. Both are against US law.

Just for fun, I did a quick googling. Here's a guy who claims to have defended people accused of downloading copyrighted content. Note that none of his proposed legal defenses is "it's legal to download copyrighted files."


about three weeks ago

Time Dilation Drug Could Let Heinous Criminals Serve 1,000 Year Sentences

SecurityGuy Re:Oh god (914 comments)

It's pretty obvious to see why - the most effective form of rehabilitation would take seconds and put the perpetrator back on the streets within the day.

Ok, I'll bite. What is that, exactly? To use my frequent example (because it's been happening around here lately), you're a drug addict who breaks into houses and steals electronics. You get caught, go to court, and we do what that causes you to stop breaking into houses...?

Society is so used to prison sentences lasting months/years that it's an entirely alien concept.

Yeah, I do agree to a point. It blows my mind that minor crimes can get you 30-90 days in jail. If you're part of modern society or an income earner in a family, that's devastating. For people who are likely to re-offend, I think the rest of society deserves time away from them. The not hypothetical guy in my example was caught with stolen stuff from numerous houses in his house. Maybe you have a magic pill to keep him from doing it again, but my money says within months of releasing him, he'll be breaking someone's door and making off with a few $k in electronics.

So maybe turning prisons into hospitals would be a better idea. If someone is so seriously messed up that they'd kill a family for no reason, they clearly have something wrong with their heads and need help, not put in a hole and forgotten about.

Again, in some cases, I agree. If you're sick or damaged in some way that results in you being a danger to everyone else, I don't want to harm you, I just want to protect the rest of us from you. If that means giving you a magic pill, fine, let's do it. I don't think that's always the case. In fact, I think that's often not the case. If I'm wrong, I'd be delighted to be shown so and will enthusiastically champion giving out those magic pills.

about a month ago

Time Dilation Drug Could Let Heinous Criminals Serve 1,000 Year Sentences

SecurityGuy Re:Oh god (914 comments)

Rehabilitate or GTFO.

That's remarkably easy to say. Show us how. I think it would be wonderful if we could catch a criminal and with a minimum of unpleasantness, turn them into a productive non-criminal. It doesn't seem to be that simple.

about a month ago

Time Dilation Drug Could Let Heinous Criminals Serve 1,000 Year Sentences

SecurityGuy Re:What a dimwit (914 comments)

Why don't you cite some? You're making an extraordinary claim that goes against the common experience of almost everyone.

Personally, I'm not going to go read those links because merely from the headlines I can tell that the subject is prisons being run badly, not whether or not punishment works. That a thing can be done badly is not at all the same as a thing not working. Give me something that's at least plausibly related to your claim and I'll read it.

As I also posted elsewhere, people tend to get this wrong and look at the people behind bars when asking if punishment is a deterrent. Fail. Selection bias. You are testing the people who weren't sufficiently deterred. Consider everyone, and you'll find a lot of people who won't risk a crime because they don't want to be punished. Hell, I don't speed much, not because I think there's some moral imperative that I not speed, but because getting my insurance rates jacked up and having to go to court is unpleasant. I'm deterred by that comparatively mild punishment. I would absolutely drive faster when I thought it was safe if there was no negative consequence to doing it. You can be darn sure that even if I lacked the moral belief that robbing someone's house is wrong, I wouldn't risk a few years of my life for whatever material gain I'd get by doing it.

about a month ago

First Automatic Identification of Flying Insects Allows Hi-Tech Bug Zapping

SecurityGuy Re:Related TED Talk (99 comments)

I really like that talk, and considered building one for my sometimes mosquito-ey back yard. Unfortunately, the laser bit is a problem. It's actually quite powerful. The DIY versions use a surplus tank laser rangefinder which is very not eye-safe. Blinding the neighbors or the dogs seems like a bad idea. There are "eye safe" lasers, but that just means you dump all the energy into the cornea, not the retina. I don't know if that would hurt, injure, or cause long term damage. Also, buying one of them of sufficient power is $XXXX. I thought perhaps of aiming it only such that it always hits the ground inside my yard, but then some shiny bit of metal ends up in my yard and I have the blinding the neighbors problem again.

In short, cool idea with lots of problems. I'd still love to have one.

about a month ago

Prominent GitHub Engineer Julie Ann Horvath Quits Citing Harrassment

SecurityGuy Re:That's capitalism. (710 comments)

Right. Github is located in a civilized country that also has unions and employment law. Unions aren't active in every company, and not active in most for that matter. Gender discrimination and harassment is illegal pretty much everywhere if not everywhere in the US. IANAL and I'm not going to go check all of the jurisdictions to confirm.

Everyone who has an opinion about unions seems to have a strong one. My own was formed at my first job where I made around $4/hour and got 1.5x overtime over 40 hours. The union guys got a lot more than that, though in fairness they were experienced and I was a kid, so "more" was quite reasonable. They got overtime and double overtime (3x base rate, or what they called "golden time") if they worked something like > 12 hours in a day, which happened from time to time. None of that really bothered me. Obviously, they just negotiated from a stronger position.

What bothered me was that they could spend a significant amount of that time just sitting on their butts and no one could do a thing about it. They had a "supervisor" who literally sat in a car all day long "supervising". Eventually, the company managed to get rid of that particular leech and just made one of the regular guys a shift lead or some such, and we got along just fine. The leech's parting words of advice to me were to find a job that paid a lot where I didn't have to do anything. In other words, do exactly what he had done. And then there's seniority. With a union, it doesn't matter if you're any good at your job or not, the only question is how long you've been there. Unions, in my experience, promote mediocrity. Oh, and then there's double dipping. Our work was primarily moving freight from one mode of transport to another. Typically from a ship to a train or truck. One of the enterprising union guys figured out how to sign up to work two ships at a time and only show up for one. He got paid for both. It was widely known that he was doing this, but no one could fire him for what amounted to blatant fraud. Maybe it's more precise to say it wasn't worth the fight with the union to get rid of the guy. Those instances of brazen exploitation turned me off unions.

Unions do have their place. When employers are abusing the workers, unions can back them off. Unions have enough power, though, that they can also screw over the employers AND the employees, and unchecked, they do.

about a month ago

43,000-Year-Old Woolly Mammoth Remains Offer Strong Chance of Cloning

SecurityGuy Re:Living Cells... I call BS. (187 comments)

Let me redirect you to your claim:

Even if frozen for a few seconds cell die.

Nope. At least not always. They also weren't cells in culture, they were ~1mm tissue blocks that had been removed from a live animal an hour or two before freezing.

I find the living cells in a 43,000 year old mammoth carcass pretty hard verging on impossible to believe, too. I'm just making the point that cells are more hardy than you might think.

about 1 month ago

Cameras On Cops: Coming To a Town Near You

SecurityGuy Re:Won't do any good. (264 comments)

IIRC, there's some evidence principle that if you should have records of a thing and I claim those records exonerate me, if you can't provide the records, then the court assumes they say what I claim they do. A principle like that would work well here. If you had or should have had camera footage of our interaction and I claim you punched me in the nose, if your recording is "lost" or your camera was "broken", then you punched me in the nose.

If ya don't like that, don't lose your recording and make sure your cameras work.

about a month ago

43,000-Year-Old Woolly Mammoth Remains Offer Strong Chance of Cloning

SecurityGuy Re:Hmm (187 comments)

Mammoths don't travel at 500+ mph. Planes don't leave footprints or take great, big dumps on the ground to announce where they've been. Now, if they create a mammoth that can travel at 500 mph across water, I concede that yes, we may lose track of it.

about a month ago


SecurityGuy hasn't submitted any stories.


SecurityGuy has no journal entries.

Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account