Beta
×

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!

Comments

top

Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

Twillerror Re:Apple as a model (720 comments)

If slashdot allowed for +1ing I would.

I would go further and say that both Apple and MS have some standard libraries at their core. Imagine trying to write a WebCam based app for Linux. For OSX or Windows you'd do a search and get pretty standard answer. For linux you'd get a ton of links to different libraries at different levels.

In general developing an app for OSX is way easier than for X. Yah most things are just webapss these days, but not everything. Which is why Chromebooks haven't totally take off. If Chromebooks had MS Office, Photoshop and a few other installed apps ( free or otherwise ) I think it would have more success. I mean why can't I installed Eclipse, Sublimetext, a Shell on a Chromebook....if I could we would have a Linux desktop technically.

4 days ago
top

Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'

Twillerror The start a hardware company (720 comments)

At this point I think you would need to manage the device from start to finish.

Basically put out limited line like Apple. Use high quality and standard chipset. I mean like a good ethernet chip, a good sound card, etc. With a standard build it is way easier to test your OS and make sure everything functions on your various models.

From there take Gnome or KDE and fork it. Go the Linux Mint Gnome route. If you are a company you can just decide how things work. Macs work one way, Windows another, but for the most part they work the way their company's wants to. That standard is what makes them popular, even amongst developer types and the kind of people that go to OSCon.

Then get a good testing community going. Make sure it works with printers. Make sure it works with projectors, make sure it works with dual monitors, make sure it works with the keyboards.

Come out with your own damn keyboards and mice.

Make the upgrade process simple, straightfoward, and automated. Certainly use a package manager, but hide it away.

The community might be able to take it and abstract, but given the linux community they would just tweak it to the point where it isn't as "beautiful".

Ubuntu tried and failed many of things. I think mostly because the people who generally run linux do so because they want to.

The difference here is that someone will walk into best buy, login to amazon, or your own site, maybe a dedicated store (think apple store) and walk out with a device that runs an OS which happens Linux...not buy some hardware and "try" to get linux working on it.

I don't think HP, Dell, etc have any interest in this and so someone needs to start it. Maybe we can leverage open hardware, maybe not, but I think we need to replicate the Apple model.

From there the hard part. Get the gaming community behind you, get Office to run on it...I mean the real Office, and keep going to get the world to treat your product with respect.

4 days ago
top

Researchers Hack Gmail With 92 Percent Success Rate

Twillerror No, hackers hacked Android apps via malware (87 comments)

They hacked Chase, Amazon, and a few other apps as well.

This has very little do to with GMail and more to do with a novel way to attack GUI based apps on the Android platform. By chance GMail had one of the highest success rates.

This would be like getting keylogging malware installed on your computer and then getting your your slashdot password compromised by reading keystrokes...and then saying Slashdot got hacked. No you computer go hacked, not Slashdot.

It also seems as GMail app gets updated it's rate might vary since this has to do with "guessing" what an app is doing by looking at system metrics.

4 days ago
top

How To FIx Healthcare.gov: Go Open-Source!

Twillerror Healthcare.gov is not Facebook (307 comments)

Am I the only one that thinks things have gotten a bit hyperbolic. I hear a lot of non technical people talking about how "bad" the architecture is.

This is a new product and has more users a few weeks in then most of the big boys had in over a year.

We are not selling a iPhone or a plane ticket here. This is a complex infrastructure with lots of back end interactions. The front end is fairly modern. They haven't gotten around to minimizing and consolidating the JS files, but that will come I'm sure.

I've gotten through the sign up process, they added some stuff to do some ad-hoc shopping. I've seen much more dragging of feet by supposed enterprise players. What are we 20 days into this enormous platform? Most of the people complaining don't even need the damn thing because they already have insurance.

At the end of the day the exchanges are not even selling insurance. Insurance companies are doing that. It's like using googles shopping feature. Ultimately the insurance company is Amazon.com. If you need the insurance you'll go directly to the person selling it. Hell we probably should have started with the exchanges being nothing more than a fancy craigslist.

People who need insurance because they are sick or scared will get it. They will get the subsidies etc. The vast majority of these so called "healthy young" are just declining insurance through there employers. They just have to fill out a bunch of paper work with their HR department.

At the end of the day healthcare.gov is something to help people get insurance. The subsides and the new rules are what will get it for them.

about 10 months ago
top

With Microsoft Office on Android, Has Linus Torvalds Won?

Twillerror MS knows exactly what THEIR core customers want (365 comments)

"Since Microsoft has a very vague idea of what users want" ... BS

Do you own a truck? If you don't and don't want one you wouldn't tell Ford and Ram(Dodge) what they should put in their trucks.

Excel is the Grep\AWK\Sed of the enterprise\business world. Not all of it, but a large percentage. The fact of the matter is there is a whole lot in your life that was built with the assistance of Word, Excel, and hell even PowerPoint. You think the construction company that built the building your in uses VIM to manage there shit.

Slashdot in general does not get this. I'm sure there are plenty of desktop support guys on here who do. Google docs is great an I use them all the time, but it's a tinker toy to some of the more advanced features in Excel that most people haven't even heard of.

Throw together a pivot table with a slicer and then see me in the morning. Take a look at stock symbol DATA for tableu...there is a world outside of compilers, web servers, and VIM people.

You can't tell me you haven't heard a iPad guy tell you he wishes he had Excel on there.

MS has done okay with the XBox. I think the phone and tablet is a catch 22 for them. If they don't do it people will wonder why. If they do people will wonder why.

1 year,26 days
top

Full-Size Remote Control Cars

Twillerror truckers (91 comments)

I wouldn't be surprised if UPS would be interested. Trucker gets tired just hand off. No more potty breaks etc.

I'm interested in the security and reliability of the connection. Cloud cover, overpasses, etc etc. Although I suppose you could combine a little auto driving in there like auto breaking and dealing with being cutoff. I don't think you could react fast enough remotely...plus if you wrecked the impact is less for you so you might get lazy.

1 year,26 days
top

Microsoft Will Have To Rename SkyDrive

Twillerror should they have won? (274 comments)

I know we all hate MS here, but doesn't it worry you that you can't have a product name with the word Sky in it.

I mean if MS renamed themselves to SkySoft or something maybe...and even then...

Seems like we just gave this company a bunch of free publicity that wasn't actually being harmed. Was anyone confused by the names?

1 year,26 days
top

Anonymous Source Claims Feds Demand Private SSL Keys From Web Services

Twillerror verisign or godaddy (276 comments)

Have they been asked? Do they keep a copy?

about a year ago
top

The Pentagon's Seven Million Lines of Cobol

Twillerror use paycor\adp (345 comments)

Regardless of your political leanings this is a job that the private sector could handle way way better. It is super hard to create a good software shop...let alone being the military.

We use paycor and we have good to great IT in general. We could program a pay app, but why the hell would we? Is pay schedule really that complicated....if it is why not simplify it...a great opportunity for reform.

about a year ago
top

The Smart Grid Has Arrived

Twillerror cnbc asked a bunch of kids (121 comments)

CNBC asked a bunch of kids if they wanted glasses or least wanted to try them. Some CNET guy was there.

All the little kiddies raised there hands. Then told it was 1500 bucks they lowered them.

I think cost is its biggest problem. Everyone who sees the videos thinks it is cool..everyone will use them why they drive or walk around town. They will probably take them off when they sit down at the bar.

about a year ago
top

Researchers Analyze Twitter To Find Happiest Parts of the United States

Twillerror depression pills (160 comments)

Seems like an easier data set to parse and a bit more truthful. You can tweet how happy you are, but at the end of the day your taking pills for depression your are not(of course excluding certain medical conditions). L.A. and other areas might be exposed for people seeming to be happy, but ultimately not.

about a year and a half ago
top

Hacker Bypasses Windows 7/8 Address Space Layout Randomization

Twillerror Re:buffer overflows (208 comments)

would a secondary dedicated IP stack work. Hardware wise could we tell the CPU that a byte or range is where stack is and fault if its written twice...write once or clear.

about a year and a half ago
top

Hacker Bypasses Windows 7/8 Address Space Layout Randomization

Twillerror buffer overflows (208 comments)

Are we ever going to fix the real issue? You generally use one to start horking the stack and then get the CPU to jump to some address. Then these protections come into play.

I get the feeling people have just given up versus trying to change compilers and hardware to protect the stack. I should be able to keep writing into an unprotected char array and never come close to some instruction pointer shouldn't I. Is it too much to demand?

about a year and a half ago
top

Barracuda Appliances Have Exploitable Holes, Fixed By Firmware Updates

Twillerror small set of ips (88 comments)

So the tech note mentions that this is only accessible from a small subset of ips...WHAT IPS!!!!!!

At least it doesn't sound like a zero day so we have time to get it patched. Since we block the management ips from our firewall it sounds like this would only effect attacks from within your network.

about a year and a half ago
top

Security Expert Says Java Vulnerability Could Take Years To Fix, Despite Patch

Twillerror Applets? (320 comments)

Why exactly do we need applets on joe smoe's machine? If your a corporation enable it.

It would be great if all browser had a whitelist of domains that you tag a site for any of this stuff. Yes youtube can play flash, other sites not. Advertisers will just use animated gif\javascript or whatever.

Sure there is this plugin and that to accomplish this...time for FF, Chrome, and IE to build this stuff in and make it off by default and super simple to address. Of course you've got grandma on IE 6/7/8, but even then MS could put out a patch that just turns off applets. The next time IE starts up it ask the user. Group policy would override.

about a year and a half ago
top

Ask Slashdot: What Practices Impede Developers' Productivity?

Twillerror Re:The Number One Impediment is MEETINGS (457 comments)

What a developer thinks, but not what managers who actually sees the forest through the trees think.

The guy who knows what he is going off and does his thing. No one meets or talk. Developers later finds out someone else was doing the same thing or solved the same problem.

Meetings can increase productivity if they have a point, use some kind of software to manage work originating from (like Trello), and have general rules.

You can take my daily standup meeting from my cold dead hands.

Bad meetings are just that. It's like people who hate government not being good at running a government. Since you demise them so much you probably go in with a super negative attitude about them. You doom yourself and your team to fail. I've seen meeting make measurable improvement, watch the meeting stop happening because of it, and then watch it revert, rinse repeat...not a horrible approach at the end of the day. Syssies with developers, developers with qa, etc. etc.

Productivity claims are just people bitchin...and a lot of it has to do with the simplicity of the product, users, and other measurements. You go into companies with lots of complexity, legacy overhead, needy clients, and you'll end up with low productivity.

And oh yah, don't capitalize meetings. It only shows your immaturity. Claiming that other people don't know what they are doing and that you do is also pretty cocky...I'm sure you know everything right? Come on slashdot stop being so reactionary.

Marketing is the only group that are bigger divas then developers these days. Relax your not nearly as smart as you think you are...you are just used to people telling you are because you like math.

about a year and a half ago
top

IE Flaw Lets Sites Track Your Mouse Cursor, Even When You Aren't Browsing

Twillerror exploited for what? (149 comments)

I want this patched, but I'm very curious as to how this really compromises anything.

I can see how it can affect virtual keyboards. Who exactly is this market? People using IE and using Virtual keyboards for security reasons? Can we have a slashdot poll of virtual keyboards users and there favorite browser.

It says these ad sites are using the data. What exactly does this give them...maybe the fact that I click the start button at 10:01 A.M. every day? Otherwise it is just random X,Y coords without knowing what app has focus.

about a year and a half ago
top

Laser Fusion Put On a Slow Burn By US Government

Twillerror stop using the word miffed (143 comments)

Besides being an ugly word it is imposing a sort of emotional response to something that is more practical and dare scientific.

At the end of the day we have created fusion. Most of it came through bombs, but from a scientific standpoint we know about fusion.

This is about creating a clean, reliable, cost effective energy solution.

There should not be hard feelings or even a feeling of failure. The idea was sound enough to look into. Maybe it's just not practical. No use throwing good money after bad or crying over spilled milk.

about a year and a half ago
top

Will Microsoft Dis-Kinect Freeloading TV Viewers?

Twillerror Biased (478 comments)

"Just when you think the cable TV viewing experience couldn't get any worse..."

I have DirectTV which could be considered cable I suppose. I also have Netflix, Hulu Plus, and a Roku box with some other stuff. My DirectTV box supports Youtube for that occasional time I want to watch Gangam style on the big screen.

I have a DVR and I love my cable "experience". My box has a basic search, but it's good enough. It records fine. I get all the shows just fine. I rarely get weather issues and never get "buffering..." messages. Add in ondemand.

Lets not confuse experience with price. We have also become a super cheap bunch. The same person that lays down 2k for an Apple laptop will complain about 100 dollar cable bill. I've spent more on dinner for a few friends then my cable bill. To bad we can't pipe our cable in from China huh?

At the same time people love their fast Internet cable modem...at this point about the best we got. Fiber at the kind of scales we need it is just not practical...and honestly coax could rival it as we move more and more spectrum to the cable modem.

What I don't understand is why Netflix doesn't offer a premium service. Offer me a 50 dollar a month plan and get the good stuff and get it faster. The real question, are our cheap asses willing to pay for what we want or not?

All that said this Kinnect thing is stupid and would never fly...and probably just someone trying to get on slashdot.

about 2 years ago

Submissions

top

Are techies piracy tone deaf?

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Twillerror (536681) writes "Over the last few weeks a flood of SOPA related articles have been on slashdot. One common theme in comments is that piracy is not a problem at all. Using piracy as way to improve sales is modded up way over any suggestion that people are stealing regardless of lost sales or not. Is part of the problem here that techies are in denial that there is an issue that needs solving in the first place?"
top

Is blocking ads piracy?

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Twillerror (536681) writes "As a web developer I'm a little put off by the success of browser plugins like AdBlock that modify the content of pages and remove ads. I like site like Slashdot and I'm perfectly fine looking at an ad or two since the content is free. I think I learned of a few products as well. One rationalization is to remove flash ads that slow your computer, but if the site is free the appropriate option in my opinion is to not visit the offending site.If the site is funded via ads by removing them you might as well be stealing it. What does Slashdot think?"
top

MS Licensing gets worse

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Twillerror (536681) writes "RedmondMag reports on problems with the new new Volume licensing site that MS has recently launched. As someone who has used this system it has to be in the top 5 worst major sites I've ever used. I'm not as big of anit-MS guy as the normal Slashdot reader, but licensing in MS I think is clearly "just bad". Cost is debatable, but CALs are just confusing and hard to implement. At what point will MS just drop CALs and start charging reasonable fees for Exchange Server, Active Directory access, File server access and the like. I think people will pay for Windows Server 2008, but when you have to upgrade all your existing 2003 CALs it makes the adoption to hard. Why should I have to pay extra for a copy of windows to hit a file server...when will MS make enough off SMB? Will the site problems finally nudge MS to revamp their licensing approach?"
Link to Original Source
top

Anyone running really old Linux versions?

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Twillerror writes "The other day I heard a story/myth about nuclear plants running VMWare to emulate Windows 95 systems. I guess the software would only run on Win95 and getting new hardware to run Win95 can be hard.

Got me thinking about Linux and older versions of it. Is anyone running much older versions of the kernel in production like situations or maybe just for fun?"
top

Why must Linux be case sensitive?

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Twillerror (536681) writes "Recently I got an orginally Windows developed web based application up and running on Linux by using JFS without case sentivity. Code referenced files in a case insentive fashion(not ideal I know). Which got me thinking about the merits of both approaches.

This question also seems to have a lot of emotion behind it from the *nix community which confuses me. I can't for the life of me understand why you would want a directory with both text.txt and Test.txt in it. I like the fact that most OSs keep the fact that it is Test.txt, and don't store test.txt, but that is where it stops. Many of the conversations I see out there bring programming languages into the mix which I think is seperate. Also, I've seen misguided posts that say Linux can do "ls -a" and "ls -A" which has nothing to do with this as well.

Can we have an honest discussion about exactly what would break on Linux and why are worlds would stop functioning? I get the consistency argument, but can't that be implemented at the programming languaging or script processing level(determined by that community) and not at the OS level? If you dont' want bash to execute "LS" and only execute "ls" is that for bash to decide and not ext3? I'm also concerned about interoperability."
top

Could the browser just be a VM?

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Twillerror (536681) writes "I've been a backend web developer for many years. Recently though I've been doing more HTML, CSS, DOM writing...more of the GUI end of things. I've come to the conclusion that HTML sucks, but its the path of least resitance and so gets the most attention. People are willing to work for hours just to get things to align correctly and work in the all browsers. I can't count how many times I've discovered some weird DOM parsing bug in both IE and/or Mozzila causing some JS toolkit to fail.

Working with Flex (Flash based applications) I was mostly pleased with how much easier it was to get a good looking application and how much and more reliable it was. It was actually compiled!. It was more like your traditional GUI API where you have containers and components. You have real input forms, trees, tables, etc. You want an input that only accepts numbers...a few characters. In general a better toolkit for laying out a desktop like application. The three biggest problems I see are that A) it is not open/standard, B) it tends to get abused for things like ads and other annoying things, and C) the embed or object tags are annoying and trying to get things to play nice inside of HTML is just bad.

I'm not pushing Flash, but I'm pushing for a more Flash like future. Suppose we had an open source Flash...there would be a mute button in the options so that no ad would ever be able to play sound without your approval. We might have a standard format and compiler..etc...etc. Web apps could be deployed in a mostly binary format without the need for a slow and complex parser.

My main point is that HTML is for content. It is really good for storing this submission or a slashdot comment, but when it comes to doing a full fletched application it falls short. Google's GMAIL has so much Javascript it's not even funny and regardless of the browser I've had bug after bug with it after it ran for a while. What GMail and other internet apps do right is mix server side power with a desktop like application. Imagine if Outlook just displayed email and a whole cluster of Exchange servers did the searching and sorting as good as Google does.

What I'd like to propose is that W3C rethink the problem and make the browser a "JVM like" application. Expose an API which allows an engine to draw graphics, save files to disk, send an email, open a socket, etc. Then have plugins that could do whatever we need. Then HTML 4 could be a plugin and HTML 5 could be a plugin. We won't have some ultra complex browser that has to parse HTML 1-5 and all the various quirks mode and crap. Then Flex\Flash can run in there as well as some open source alternative. These plugins can then register with the main browsers through some sort of approval process. So Firefox would just auto download whatever engine they needed and we would have a trusted list of applications.

Ultimately I think a standard as complex and large as HTML is just not feasible. The W3C has to please to many people...the content people and application people. Javascript is a cool little language, but we can't be limited to just it...and we can't be limited to just an HTML web. This is why the iPhone and many others have a Google Maps app and you don't just browse to Google Maps. Imagine if you hit Google Apps and it downloaded a Google made plugin that ran the living crap out of their apps."
top

Proactive security

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Twillerror (536681) writes "It seems like almost every day some site is hacked or another exploit is found in an application. The theme is usually the same. A buffer overflow, XSS attack or SQL Injection. The standard solutions then follow. Either check the array length, validate the input, or strip bad tags or attributes. All of which are reactive.

The NX bit(Wikipedia) is a step in the right direction. Should we not be focusing more on similar solutions that prevent or eliminate the problem.

For instance on the SQL front imagine having your SQL statements start with a security line. An example might be...
allow select : users; expected rowcount <= 1;

select username, password from users where login = '%form.login%'

The developer could specify what his/her statement is intended to do. The SQL engine could easily detect if it tries something else and refuse to run it, or better yet silently reject the invalid part of the statement and alert the application.

For XSS attacks imagine if the browser added a "noscript" attribute to DIV tags. Anything inside those tags could not execute javascript. A way to wrap user submitted content. If the browser detected the script it could actually throw a warning to the user. Taking it one step further the browser might be able to report this error back to the web server to alert them of the problem.

What else could we do to be more proactive about security in the programming languages themselves?"
top

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  about 8 years ago

Twillerror writes "After reading the article on slashdot concering bands refusing iTunes I was reminded about what I consider to be digital music's biggest flaw. This to me is the lack of a standardized album file. Imagine an MP3 or Ogg that had a bit of XML stuck onto it's header of footer. This had the normal ID3 Tag information, but also had a list of tracks and start\offset times.

If say WinAmp and other players knew of this format, they could make the list of songs collapsable, and make them part of a randomizer. Imagine that you could say, play two songs off each random album I choose.

This to me is why iTunes has done better as a player, because of it's organizational skills. On the other hand, I think that ultimately if all the tracks are not in one binary file that they will get broken up. Also, backup would be far faster for people who only scanned in albums.

Yes sometimes I'd rather just get a track off an album, but most of the time I'd rather get the whole thing. Mostly because most of the bands I listen to might actually do care about their albums...mostly. This is a personal opinion, but I that almost everyone out there has listened to a great album in it's entirity and would like it stuck together."

Journals

top

Mother of Computing

Twillerror Twillerror writes  |  more than 10 years ago

This women invented the compiler, if such a thing can be "invented".

http://www.sdsc.edu/ScienceWomen/hopper.html

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

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>