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Comments

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Car Dealers vs the Web: GM Shifts Toward Online Purchasing

Verteiron Re:This just in... (160 comments)

Heh, unless you work for a GM dealership, you have NO idea how bad GM is at IT. Their dealer-side website still does not officially support anything other than IE8. Business reporting relies on ActiveX integration with Excel, and only works properly with Excel 2000 and 2003. It can be made to work under 2007, but they don't support anything higher. Parts of the service-related workbenches still use VBScript. It used to be accessible only over a super-slow satellite link, but they changed that a few years ago, thank god.

To be fair, though, Toyota's web back-end, Dealer Daily, is even worse. IE-only, accessible only through a dedicated T1 which may not be used for anything else (but which you still pay full price for, of course). Blank page under anything other than IE.

Come to think of it, a lot of dealership stuff is locked on IE. Dealertrack (intentionally locks out non-IE browsers), Dealersocket CRM (featured-limited under non-IE browsers). ADP is the biggest supplier of dealership management software in the US and most of their stuff is entirely reliant on IE.

It's a pathetic state of affairs.

about a year ago
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Firefox 23 Makes JavaScript Obligatory

Verteiron Solution in extensions (778 comments)

As long as it doesn't break Noscript, I'm ok with this. It really IS folly to try to use the modern web without any javascript at all, but with Noscript I can still pick and choose which sites are allowed to run it in my browser.

about a year ago
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Apple Deluged By Police Demands To Decrypt iPhones

Verteiron Re:Brute-forcing the lock code (239 comments)

That was the point. It's not hard. I'm a general IT guy and I was able to do it easily. These PDs are saying they need Apple's help bypassing lock codes. Not just passwords, but lock codes like the one I bruteforced with free tools in a few hours. That they claim to need Apple's help for that is ridiculous.

about a year ago
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Apple Deluged By Police Demands To Decrypt iPhones

Verteiron Re:Brute-forcing the lock code (239 comments)

Who mentioned Google? I'm assuming Android device lockcodes are just as easily bruteforced, probably moreso; I've just never had occasion to need to get into one before.

about a year ago
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Apple Deluged By Police Demands To Decrypt iPhones

Verteiron Brute-forcing the lock code (239 comments)

Brute-forcing an iPhone's lock code is relatively trivial with freely available tools. This puts the device in DFU mode, so "Erase device on X unlock attempts" doesn't take effect. That version of the tools only bruteforces lockcodes, but there's no theoretical reason you couldn't try at least a dictionary attack on a password, too. Since it's also possible to dump the hardware key and a complete (encrypted) image, I imagine an offline attack on the image is possible, too. You wouldn't have to rely on the relatively slow hardware in the iPhone.

Using those tools I have successfully bruteforced the 4-digit lockcode to an iDevice running 6.0.2, and that's with no prior experience with or knowledge of iOS. I even used an emulated Mac to compile the necessary firmware patch. And that's just what I was able to do in with a few hours of fiddling. There are people who do this for a living, and tools dedicated specifically to extracting data from mobile devices. Are these PDs really saying they can't get into devices with simple lock codes?

about a year ago
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Boston Declares Health Emergency Due To Massive Flu Outbreak

Verteiron Re:Good Advice (316 comments)

Don't forget incubating for 15+ minutes in a cramped room with a lot of other sick people, all coughing and sneezing. If you weren't sick when you arrived, you certainly will be when you leave.

about a year and a half ago
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Vast Bulk of BitCoins Are Hoarded, Not Used

Verteiron Re:I'm saving mine. (438 comments)

Same here. Someday my 10 btc will make me rich beyond measure, you just wait.

about 2 years ago
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FCC To Allow Cable Companies To Encrypt Over-the-Air Channels

Verteiron Re:I'll take a third option... (376 comments)

I do this, and I thoroughly enjoy it. It will end pretty soon, though, once the cable conglomerates get any semblance of network neutrality off the table. Then they'll just make up some excuse to block or throttle Netflix, Hulu, and the rest. In fact, they don't even have to get involved in the whole NN debate; the data caps they impose will soon make it financially unfeasible to continue streaming any service other than their own, which will be overpriced and offer a poorer selection.

about 2 years ago
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US Consumer Bureau Opens Online Credit Card Complaint DB

Verteiron Re:well damn (162 comments)

You're mistaking the purpose of credit cards. They exist to make the issuing banks money. Why would seeing you close a high-interest card encourage me to offer you credit. You're not willing to be scammed by high interest rates, which means I won't be able to make money off of you.

more than 2 years ago
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Lake Vostok Reached

Verteiron Re:Something not mentioned - (156 comments)

The goal here is not to see any living organisms there as a portal to the past. It is to see any organisms who have manged to survive in an airless, water-filled lake buried under 3 miles of ice for millions of years. It is fairly likely that, if there are any living organisms there, they're going to have evolved in some pretty interesting ways.

more than 2 years ago
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OpenStack Ditches Microsoft Hyper-V

Verteiron Re:Maybe it's just too hard... (73 comments)

Even IF a company decides to ditch Windows, it may not be possible. Tons of web-based stuff, particularly in niche industries still only works with Internet Explorer and ActiveX. The Microsoft monoculture is so wide-spread that migrating away from it can make it difficult to do business.

more than 2 years ago
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Tales of IT Idiocy

Verteiron Re:Make it idiot-proof... (181 comments)

"Never disbelieve the user" is right. One of my early tech support calls (many moons ago) was from a guy who claimed his computer rebooted every time he flushed his toilet.

Yeah. I figured he was yanking my chain, but you can't just hang up on people, so after humoring him for a few minutes we actually set up a tech visit.

We fixed him up, at least temporarily, by installing a UPS for his system.

He lived way out in the boonies and used well water and a septic tank. Turns out when he flushed, not only did his computer reboot, but his lights flickered for a moment, too. Flushing the toilet activated some power-hungry pump in his water system, and the draw was browning out his computer.

more than 2 years ago
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Tales of IT Idiocy

Verteiron Re:From an actual helpdesk ticket I have open... (181 comments)

I routinely get emails that say things like "i get a box that says cannot connect".

I mean sure, I understand people can't be troubled to write down the contents of every error message they see, but would a little basic grammar hurt?

more than 2 years ago
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Engineered Stomach Microbe Converts Seaweed Into Ethanol

Verteiron Re:Protip (226 comments)

Okay, I have to ask the question. How the hell did you inadvertently swallow a couple cc of saturated GM E.coli culture? Were you trying to put it in your partner's lemonade and dropped in your own?

more than 2 years ago
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Securing Android For the Enterprise

Verteiron Re:Leiutenant Data is insecure? (136 comments)

And don't forget the episode where we found out his creator left a backdoor in both of his androids, forcing them to go to him at will regardless of the consequences.

more than 2 years ago
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Skilled Readers Recognize Words By Shape

Verteiron Re:Interesting... (420 comments)

I read this way as well, and I've noticed I frequently miss homophonic puns. F'rinstance, Kingdom of Loathing has an area known as the Orc Chasm. I mean, they don't get any more obvious, but it wasn't until I was actually halfway through telling someone else about it that I realized what I had just said.

You can imagine my amusement when I started reading Terry Pratchett books to an audience and stumbled over dozens of puns I'd missed entirely on my own read-throughs precisely because I don't have a "reading voice" in my head.

more than 2 years ago
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Senate Set To Vote On the Repeal of Net Neutrality

Verteiron Re:The problem isn't equal treatment of all traffi (345 comments)

Yes, the solution is simply to switch ISPs- oh, wait, most people in the US have only two broadband providers available at most, and they both have abhorrent neutrality practices.

I can't start my own ISP because the barrier to entry is impossibly high and the current ISPs have state or city-granted monopolies on internet/phone/cable service.

Free market theory doesn't work when the market isn't free.

more than 2 years ago
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Gadget Allows You to Keep Bees In Your Apartment

Verteiron Re:Wonderful... (252 comments)

Collars? Hah!

Try shoeing the little buggers.

more than 2 years ago
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Fake Raspberry Pi Shops Pop Up

Verteiron What the hell... (119 comments)

... is a Raspberry-Pi?

more than 2 years ago
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1 MW Cold Fusion Plant Supposedly To Come Online

Verteiron Re:suicide (828 comments)

3. I have heard that drowning is one of the more pleasant ways to day. Quite painless. Using excessive diving weights, drown yourself above the Challanger Deep, a part of Mariana Trench near Guam. Hopefully you would die before you reached the bottom 6.78 miles down. You would truly have gone where no man has gone before.

Sorry, but Jacques Piccard has you beat.

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

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Mediacom using DPI to hijack searches, 404 errors

Verteiron Verteiron writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Verteiron (224042) writes "Cable company Mediacom recently began using deep packet inspection to redirect 404 errors, Google and Bing searches to their own, ad-laden "search engine". Despite repeated complaints from customers, Mediacom continues this connection hijacking even after the user has opted out of the process. Months after the problem was first reported, the company seems unwilling or unable to fix it and has even experimented with injecting their own advertising into sites like Google. How does one get a company infamous for its shoddy customer service and comfortable, state-wide cable monopolies to act on an issue like this?"
Link to Original Source
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Scientist predicts our extinction within 100 years

Verteiron Verteiron writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Verteiron (224042) writes "Australian scientist Frank Fenner claims that humanity will face extinction in as little as 100 years. Using Easter Island as an example, Fenner says that imminent climate change and massive overpopulation has already sealed the fate of humanity, and that all attempts to slow or reverse it are merely delaying the inevitable. Bummer."
Link to Original Source
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Obama will support telecom retroactive immunity

Verteiron Verteiron writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Verteiron (224042) writes "By now you all know that the FISA "compromise" bill passed today by a large majority, thus granting telecoms retroactive immunity for their illegal wiretapping. What you may not know is that Barack Obama has stated he will support this bill when it gets to the Senate, even if he cannot get the retroactive immunity clause removed."
Link to Original Source
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Electromagnetic "allergies" are all in the

Verteiron Verteiron writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Verteiron (224042) writes "According to the BBC, a recent study shows that people who claim to suffer from electromagnetic "allergies" or "electrosensitivity" are really only suffering from their own paranoia. Those who claimed to be "electrosensitive" were actually worse at telling when the towers were on or off than the control group. Better tell these guys."
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Verteiron Verteiron writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Verteiron (224042) writes "The former CEO of AT&T, Ed Whitacre, had some interesting remarks to make about Net Neutrality during his parting speech. Choice quotes include his plans for getting anti-neutrality legislation through: "Will Congress let us do it?" Whitacre asks his colleagues. "You bet they will — cuz we don't call it cashin' in. We call it 'deregulation.' "

More information on AT&T's attitude problem and a video of the speech are available here. There's no sign that his replacement is any better."

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