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Comments

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US Air Force Scraps ERP Project After $1 Billion Spent

Sounder40 US Army's ERP Going Well... (362 comments)

The US Army's ERP project is going pretty well, though it's had it's problems along the way. The project, called General Fund Enterprise Business System or GFEBS, is nearing completion.

about a year and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Using Company Laptop For Personal Use

Sounder40 VMware Player (671 comments)

They're not (usually) going to sniff your internet traffic... They'll more likely look at browser history and file contents, and usually in the "normal" places for the usual file extensions. Running an alternate operating system renders the issue moot.

1) Download and install VMware Player
2) Download and install the Linux distro of your choice, with a small disk so it doesn't waste too much space.
3) Enjoy all the surfing you want.

Yeah, you said it was probably locked down, I know. But maybe this is something you can ask about? This is what I do, but I usually carry my own personal laptop.

Alternative 1:
1) Download your favorite distro's "live" CD
2) Boot it up and have a good time.

You should be able to do that at least, right? You can save files/configurations to a stick.

Alternative 2:
1) Download your favorite distro
2) Write it to a stick with LiLi USB Creator (Windows) or one if the million such apps on Linux, such as usb_creator.
3) Boot that up and rock on.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Network Backup Solution Out of the Box?

Sounder40 Re:DropBox (251 comments)

Yeah, Dropbox. Great product for the money, and it supports Linux, Mac, Windows, and Unix. It requires no thought on your part as files are automatically uploaded and synced to your other computer whenever they are created or updated. You can retrieve old copies of files too, which is handy when you clobber one accidentally. It supports syncing of TrueCrypt volumes. And it's free up to 2 GB. You can get additional free space (up to 8GB IIRC) if you send invites to your friends and colleagues.

Security is an issue, however. They encrypt the files on their servers, but the key is not stored particularly securely on your local servers, workstations, and laptops. I don't worry because I encrypt sensitive files myself. I use TrueCrypt for the most part, but you can use encrypted zip files.

more than 2 years ago
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Space Shuttle Atlantis Launches On Final Flight

Sounder40 Re:Godspeed Atlantis (275 comments)

Flamebait? Hardly. It's dead on. US space policy has been a mess since the day after Apollo 11. Before then, we had a clear mission. That mission was to land on the moon, and do it before the Soviets. We accomplished that mission. The next mission was to establish a space station, a moon base, and a cheaper way to get to them both. The shuttle could have been significantly cheaper but contractors, congress, and NASA itself got in the way. (Reusable SRBs? Really? How much did we "save" reusing them?) And there was no more sense of mission like there was before Apollo 11. Public apathy too.

So, in my humble opinion, not flamebait.

about 3 years ago
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Space Shuttle Atlantis Launches On Final Flight

Sounder40 Re:Godspeed Atlantis (275 comments)

Because of stupid NASA planning, true. But only partly. NASA contractors overinflated project costs whenever possible to build their stake. And congress couldn't keep their stinking fingers out of the pie, constantly micro-managing NASA spending. It was, and still is, a mess. I watched it for 15 years at JSC in Houston before I could no longer stand it.

about 3 years ago
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Dropbox Can't See Your Dat– Er, Never Mind

Sounder40 Ummm... BFD? (333 comments)

Dropbox, like any and every other internet entity, is subject to the laws of their land, and therefore must provide data when requested by valid court order. As for Dropbox having access to my data, again, this is not a surprise considering my first point.

Personally, the utility of Dropbox is worth the risk. However, it is incumbent on me to be careful what data I put on Dropbox, and in what format. When I put sensitive data on Dropbox, it has been encrypted. Since I am sharing files on multiple computers I really don't want this data accessible anyway.

I recommend Dropbox, Mozy, Carbonite and all the others to family and friends because it is painless file backup. I also warn them that data backed up to the cloud is accessible by people we hope are moral and altruistic. I warn them that they may not be.

So pardon me for saying big effin' deal...

more than 3 years ago
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Challenger 25 Years Later

Sounder40 The Perspective from Houston (236 comments)

I was working at the old IBM facility at JSC in Houston, as an operator on a mainframe server that housed a database called SED that tracked every part on every shuttle. My manager walked in and told me what happened, and told me to lock the mainframe down until instructed otherwise. Some of the engineers were trying to run some tests on some shuttle computers, and were miffed that they couldn't get in until I told them why.

I wasn't allowed to leave the computer room for another two hours, but when I did, the cafeteria was full of crying people watching the news coverage on several TVs which were brought in to watch launches on. To a person, all of the engineers were worried that it was a software fault because they wrote the code. So the tears and horrified looks were very fearful.

It was a creepily similar feeling when 9/11 happened... everyone sitting around the TV feeling totally helpless.

more than 3 years ago
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Challenger 25 Years Later

Sounder40 Re:Root cause: politics? (236 comments)

More to the point on the SRBs:

All but the last section was reused. The bottom part with the cone on it was newly manufactured each time. The section right above it had the lower truss on it which attached to the external tank, and took a tremendous amount of torque at very high temperatures--enough that it was pulled a little out of round.

So the new, perfectly round bottom section was mated to a slightly out of round section. Want to guess where the fatal leak happened? Yeah, the joint between those two sections, and the side closest to the ET. If you look at some of the footage of the Challenger right before it blows up, you can see from the smoke trail that the cone is gimballing (looks like a "Z" pattern) to correct for the gases coming out of the leak.

This never got corrected in later flights. They still reuse the top four sections. There's now two rings, and they don't fly below freezing any more, but the design flaw is still there.

All to pass out "gravy" to more constituencies. At increased costs.

more than 3 years ago
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Obama FCC Caves On Net Neutrality

Sounder40 Re:Color me Stupid (853 comments)

I don't disagree with you, but if the democrats had put up a candidate that was at ALL appealing, I wouldn't have repeated my first mistake. I mean really... Kerry? So many better choices back then than him.

I actually met GWB before he held any office, back in his drinking days. Even then, even at his worst, he was a man of sincerity and integrity. I've met other congressmen and senators and to a one, they all care deeply about their constituency. Unfortunately, you can't be sincere, stand on principle, or have integrity and be a successful politician.

And while voting for one candidate over another may be a mistake, it's really not stupid per se. It's always a "lesser of two evils" decision. My mistake, like most of my fellow citizens, is believing anything that comes out of their mouths. Not that they are not sincere or that they don't care because they do. But the system is set up such that they will be ostracized and won't get elected unless they compromise their principles. Don't believe me? You watch the voting records of any on the holier-than-thou Tea Party members. NOT ONE of them will stand on principles. Everyone of them will vote the party line.

I'm afraid we are going to see the most stagnant congress in the history of the United States.

more than 3 years ago
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Obama FCC Caves On Net Neutrality

Sounder40 Color me Stupid (853 comments)

Obama's net neutrality pledge was one of the reasons I voted for him after voting for Republican presidential candidates for so many years. (That, and attempting to right the wrong of voting for dubya--twice.) It is now clear to me that they are ALL a bunch of lying hypocrites. And that I'm just not as smart as I thought I was...

more than 3 years ago
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USB Is the Devil's Connection

Sounder40 No Hope for Mankind (474 comments)

That's it--we have now reached the critical mass of human stupidity. There's just no hope for us any more.

more than 3 years ago
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Measuring LAMP Competency?

Sounder40 Re:how many NASA people were certified (453 comments)

You're kidding, right? The mechanical, aeronautical, electrical and civil engineers not certified? Not only were they all engineers, they were the best of the best, the cream of the crop. A lot of guys wanted to be NASA engineers, and most of them were not hired. This is not a good comparison.

about 4 years ago
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Firefox Search In Ubuntu 10.04 Changed To Google

Sounder40 Re:Unfortunately (224 comments)

Fortunately one Canonical employee is prepared to share what they know with us: from TFA:
  Rick Spencer, who announced the change back to Google, said that Canonical have decided to change back to Google after deciding that Google Search will be more familiar to a lot of users upgrading to Ubuntu 10.04...

Of course, you may choose not to believe that. But Canonical are providing an explanation.

If "familiarity" was the issue, then why move the fsck'ing window buttons to the upper left? I don't buy that as an argument.

more than 4 years ago
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Amazon Caves To Publishers On eBook Pricing

Sounder40 Penguin and Hachette eBooks Too (236 comments)

I'm traveling a lot now, so I'm reading a lot. I picked up the James Patterson "Alex Cross" series on my Kindle. I tried to buy the next book in the series Thursday only to find that no James Patterson books were available. Turns out that Hachette books had blocked all book sales while Amazon switched to the "agency model". Agency model means that Amazon acts as an agent for the publisher instead of a middleman/retailer like they do for paper books.

It was a short-lived outage, and I was able to buy the next book this morning. For a dollar more. Not a big deal, but I see the end of my love affair with the Kindle real soon now. If this is the way they're going to play, I'm just not interested.

more than 4 years ago
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Google Buys iPhone Search App, Kills It

Sounder40 Don't be Evil? (223 comments)

So much for _that_ motto... as if they lived by it in the first place.

more than 4 years ago
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Texas Textbooks Battle Is Actually an American War

Sounder40 "Dumbass Texans"? (1252 comments)

Is it really necessary to disparage every citizen of a specific state? And which Texans are you calling "dumbasses"? The ultra left-wingers in Austin or the West U folks in Houston? The ultra right-wingers in the NASA area south of Houston? The "buckle of the bible belt" East Texans? The nouveau-riche in Dallas and Houston? The Tex-Mex groups in San Antonio and along the border?

Texas is too diverse a state to label everyone with one brush.

more than 4 years ago
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Obama Choosing NOT To Go To the Moon

Sounder40 Re:Fail (920 comments)

We certainly don't need to go back to the moon. FAIL

Fail, indeed. But I have a very hard time believing anyone at NASA would say anything this stupid.

more than 4 years ago
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Moblin V2.0 Beta For Netbooks and Nettops

Sounder40 Re:Significance? (50 comments)

I think Intel backing a Windows alternative is very significant for all the reasons as cited by Bob Cringely. I counted on Linux and even Apple to push Windows out, but Linux is too vague of a platform (Ubuntu? Fedora? SuSE? KDE? Gnome?) and Apple turns out to be every bit as evil as Microsoft. Of course, you could argue that Intel's anti-competitive past doesn't bode well for Moblin, and I think you would be right.

So I will choose to disagree with you that a Moblin beta release is a minor thing. I hope that we get more choices and not fewer. Something needs to do it for the sake of freedom.

more than 5 years ago
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Most Popular Free, Arena-Style FPS?

Sounder40 WoP! (205 comments)

World of Padman all the way. It uses the Quake-3 engine. Great fun in a comical sort of way.

more than 5 years ago
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'Greasemonkey' Malware Targets Firefox

Sounder40 Re:i've said this many times (370 comments)

The reason Windows is targeted is because it's model of sharing everything was so wide open to so many exploits. And don't forget the numerous buffer-overflow vulnerabilities. Top that off with the fact that it is so pervasive, and you have the deadly combination we have now.

Linux/Unix, on the other hand, was written with clear lines of delineation between the user and kernel spaces. And attention was paid to avoid buffer overflow vulnerabilities.

Not saying that there aren't exploits available in Linux and Unix... There are. It's just designed from the ground up to be more secure than Windows.

So part of what you said is correct: The pervasiveness of Windows is a major reason why it is targeted. But you can't avoid the poor security design of Windows as a cause as well.

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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Microsoft Kills AutoPatcher

Sounder40 Sounder40 writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Sounder40 (243087) writes "Sad news indeed from the AutoPatcher crew:

"Today we received an e-mail from Microsoft, requesting the immediate take-down of the download page, which of course means that AutoPatcher is probably history. As much as we disagree, we can do very little, and although the download page is merely a collection of mirrors, we took the download page down.

We would like to thank you for your support. For the past 4 years, it has been a blast. Unfortunately, it seems like it's the end of AutoPatcher as we know it."

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