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Comments

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EC To Pursue Antitrust Despite Microsoft's IE Move

astarf Re:Wait what? (484 comments)

Here's what I don't get: is anybody out there making piles of money off of their web browser, or who thinks that if only IE would go away they could corner the market and rake in bundles of cash from all the free downloads?

more than 5 years ago
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FTC Shuts Down Calif. ISP For Botnets, Child Porn

astarf Re:Hand It Over to Someone More Capable (224 comments)

The FTC's authority gives it the power to shut down companies that appear to be engaged in unfair and deceptive practices.

Whereas the FBI's authority gives it the power to investigate crimes and arrest people. And the U. S. attorney's authority gives his office the power to prosecute people and put them in jail.

more than 5 years ago
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Download Taxes As a Weapon Against File-Sharing

astarf It Doesn't Matter if the RIAA Pushes This Claim (451 comments)

It doesn't matter if the RIAA pushes this claim, it matters if the Washington state equivalent of the IRS pushes this claim. The RIAA doesn't engage in criminal prosecutions -- it files civil suits, and you can't sue someone the grounds they they owe a third party money. If if your local tax board takes this approach, it doesn't seem to change the equation: there are already significant legal sanctions in place for illegal fire sharing and this doesn't seem to add much to the balance.

more than 5 years ago
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BYU Prof. Says University Classrooms Will Be "Irrelevant" By 2020

astarf Re:Networking? (469 comments)

You have a network, and you will likely find jobs from people in this network. Whoever pointed this out hopefully didn't provide anyone with much of a revelation. The man who turned network into an adverb, however, should be shot. Networks come from showing a genuine interest in people, not from networking, and certainly not from glad-handing your way around a room while handing out your business card like a protest leaflet.

more than 5 years ago
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BYU Prof. Says University Classrooms Will Be "Irrelevant" By 2020

astarf Re:What you learn in class is less than half of it (469 comments)

I absolutely concur. It's also worth noting that being forced to sit in a room with other students and hold discussions is an immensely valuable experience. Otherwise, you might as well purchase a textbook, study on your own, and avoid the cost of tuition.

more than 5 years ago
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Offshore Windpower To Potentially Exceed US Demand

astarf Re:There's wind in them thar.... oceans? (679 comments)

This is all handled via the Law of the Sea treaty, which the United States Senate refuses to ratify but which applies to all federal agencies via executive order. The treaty is supported by everyone from Chevron to the U. S. Navy to Greenpeace. It's opposed by a few groups on the far right who've made the mistake of believing some false information passed on to them by radio talk show hosts and other sources.

The Law of the Sea treaty gives nations 12 nautical miles past their coastline as their territorial sea, where a country exercises near-absolute sovereignty. Nations also get up to 200 miles off their coastline as their "exclusive economic zone" or EEZ. Power generation from wind turbines could be considered economic activity, and therefore be regulated by the United States up to 200 miles offshore. Everything beyond that is international waters.

State authority, however, only extends to three miles offshore. Originally three miles offshore was the amount the United States claimed as its territorial sea. Under Clinton when we expanded our territorial sea claim out to 12 miles in line with the rest of the world, it was accomplished such that this claim only applies to the federal government and not to state governments.

more than 5 years ago
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Morality of Throttling a Local ISP?

astarf Re:bill, don't throttle (640 comments)

Oh and to justify it to the boss, I'd cite the recent court case which states ISPs may not discriminate against P2P traffic. i.e. It's effectively illegal to filter traffic, but not illegal to implement metered usage such that customers reduce usage voluntarily.

Minor point, but it was an FCC hearing against Comcast not a court case. Part of the problem was that Comcast ran around terminating connections behind your back -- and without notifying customers via TOS or any other method.

When it comes to throttling, seanadams had it exactly right: you have to provide the auto-throttle option so that people don't get slammed with a huge bill at the end of the month. Very few people want to sit around adding up their monthly bandwidth usage, so it's a good idea to start warning users as they approach the limit. Unless, of course, slamming people with a huge overage bill is part of your revenue-maximizing business model.

more than 5 years ago
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How Do Militaries Treat Their Nerds?

astarf Re:True tech talent is shunned (426 comments)

Perhaps, but they do have a cargo pilot at the top -- which is a refreshing break from the fighter jock monopoly.

more than 5 years ago
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How Do Militaries Treat Their Nerds?

astarf Officers are Managerial Generalists (426 comments)

What Mr. Bejtlich does seem to understand is that the officer corps in the military exists to provide a cadre of managerial generalists. That isn't to imply that managers don't need to learn and understand the work they supervise, but a good officer shouldn't be tied to a specific specialty. A good officer should become reasonably proficient in the skills required for his/her current assignment, while being open to learning an entirely new skill set as required by a subsequent assignment.

The military DOES absolutely need technical experts, but that's what the enlisted and civilian ranks are for. If every officer restricted themselves to learning about a specific specialty, you wouldn't have anyone competent to fills the ranks of generals and admirals.

more than 5 years ago
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Why TV Lost

astarf Re:Poor reasons (576 comments)

It may be more convenient to watch videos on a computer screen, but it's certainly not more comfortable or more enjoyable than sitting down on a sofa and watching a television.

more than 5 years ago
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Why TV Lost

astarf Really (576 comments)

Really? Facebook killed TV? And I was trying so very hard to take you seriously.

more than 5 years ago
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The Unmanned Air Force

astarf Re:UAV's vs. Manned Fighters (352 comments)

Because the United States almost almost operates with complete, unchallenged air superiority, no one is worried about whether UAVs can take on manned aircraft. If it ever comes down to an air war, we already have the resources we need to defeat any potential adversary. UAVs, however, are used for close-in GROUND support. For quite some time there's been a strong reluctance within the Air Force to invest in UAVs because the Air Force is run by pilots. Gates, however, essentially made the point to the Air Force that "the ground pounders are getting killed out there, it's time you started providing some support." The previous secretary and chief of staff for the Air Force didn't get the message and were fired. This guy obvious values his job a bit more.

more than 5 years ago
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Student Faces Suspension For Spamming Profs

astarf Re:I read her entire email (516 comments)

The university's ability to place regulations on usage of their email system goes above and beyond what could regulate in the public sphere, just as their ability to prohibit bringing firearms on campus (the second amendment notwithstanding) goes above and beyond what would be constitutional in the general public sphere. Whether the university is public or private is irrelevent.

more than 5 years ago
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Student Faces Suspension For Spamming Profs

astarf Re:I read her entire email (516 comments)

Emailing your professors is fine. Protesting action by the administration is fine. Spamming 391 of your professors even after you've been advised that your actions are probhited and that there is an alternate way to have your grevience heard is not fine.

more than 5 years ago
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Student Faces Suspension For Spamming Profs

astarf Re:I read her entire email (516 comments)

No, no she can't. Aside from the point that you can only counter-sue if you're actually being sued (she's being suspended, not sued) there's a variety of flaws in that argument, the most blatant of which is the fact that it's a university system -- which means the university gets to set the acceptable use policy.

more than 5 years ago
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Student Faces Suspension For Spamming Profs

astarf Re:Mass mailing (516 comments)

Spam is a scourge of the modern internet. Were even a small percentage of the student body to follow this lead in blasting out an email out to hundreds of faculty members any time something annoyed them, it would quickly clog faculty inboxes. There was a right way to have her grevience heard -- spamming 391 faculty members certainly wasn't it.

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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Army Cadets In Cyber Security Exercise Use Linux

astarf astarf writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Peter writes "As part of the ongoing Department of Defense effort to shore up cyber defenses, Army cadets participate in the annual NSA-sponsored Cyber Defense Exercise (CDX). The CDX involves students from West Point, Annapolis, the Air Force Academy, Coast Guard and Merchant Marine Academies, as well as the Naval Postgraduate Academy and the Air Force Institute of Technology. It's a defensive-only exercise where students set up a virtual network providing certain services (database, email, web, etc.) that then comes under attack by professionals at the NSA.

One of the seniors at West Point, who was chosen to participate in the program because of his experience with Linux, explains:

"It seems weird for the Army with its large contracts to be using Linux, but it's very cheap and very customizable," Cadet McCord said. It is also much easier to secure because "you can tweak it for everything you need" and there are not as many known ways to attack it, he said.

"

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