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Microsoft Agrees To Contempt Order So It Can Appeal Email Privacy Case

bagofbeans It's down to money (122 comments)

MS can sell data to anyone they want, including USG. If they win this, then they can charge USG a much higher price for access than the 'reasonable costs' for responding to a court order.

about a week ago

3 Recent Flights Make Unscheduled Landings, After Disputes Over Knee Room

bagofbeans Re:Anthropometrics (811 comments)

Please explain your last sentence.

about two weeks ago

Fukushima Thyroid Cancer Data released

bagofbeans Stats (1 comments)

The average (presumably meaning mean) tumour size is completely irrelevant. What would be useful would be a chart showing individual tumour size. If weighted toward the small size, the cancers are more likely to have been initiated by recent events, e.g. the fallout.

Also, my understanding is that that the ultrasound should be able to identify tissue mass discrepancies down to 2mm dia. Again, small tumours are where the interest lies. So why not?

about three weeks ago

Transparent Solar Collectors May Replace Conventional Windows

bagofbeans Transparent misunderstanding (1 comments)

After reading TFA, it appears that the author thinks that 'transparent' means clear to the eye, as opposed to tinted. It's a measure of how much of the desired spectrum passes through, i.e. the transmissivity.

"Completely transparent" means 100% transmissivity. Sorry mate, not available.

Besides, TFA describes the action as deliberate internal reflection of some incident light to the sides, so the transparency has gotta be worse than the intrinsic material, since some light is forced to not pass through.

A useful discussion would have been the tradeoff between window transmissivity and power per unit area...

about three weeks ago

Securing Networks In the Internet of Things Era

bagofbeans You are probably correct... (106 comments)

..but in 30 years. Meanwhile, the toaster manufacturer needs Granny to be able to but and use it without explicitly pluuging in a network or configuring anything.

So IOT devices will have to have wifi sneak capabilities, always trying to establish a wifi connection. They can continually try to crack encrypted wifis.

It will be an interesting household with a few dozen nodes continually spamming the aether trying for connection.

about three weeks ago

Calif. Court Rules Businesses Must Reimburse Cell Phone Bills

bagofbeans Re:The memo you are about to see (161 comments)

I expect you are being ironic, but actually the problem I have observed is managers expecting to get hold of employees 24/7, so initiating the phone call.

about a month ago

Verizon to offer discounted data rates to apps purchased through their app store

bagofbeans So they are tracking (1 comments)

So either the preferred apps advise Verzon their continual data usage, so Verzon is doing DPI. Great, just what I wanted.

about a month ago

Apple Refutes Report On iPhone Threat To China's National Security

bagofbeans Re:noone trusts their cya legalese (134 comments)

Just curious, but have you ever actually read a 'chinese news media report'? I certainly haven't. I suspect your comment is merely your nationalistic prejudice rearing up defensively.

IMHO, it's western governments that publish spin (i.e. lie, or mislead, or obfuscate). The (ex-)communist countries simply don't allow anything to be published about politically controversial issues.

about 2 months ago

Phillip K. Dick's "Radio Free Albemuth" movie is now available on

bagofbeans Alanis Morissette... (1 comments)

...was in Dogma, so 'first starring role'??

about 2 months ago

Nominet Compromising UK WHOIS Privacy, Wants To See Gov't-Issued ID

bagofbeans Re:Seems Prudent (71 comments)

You're on the train to nowhere...

about 3 months ago

Google discriminates in favour of Asian employees - or what?

bagofbeans As far as African Americans are concerned... (2 comments)

...I've seen very, very few African Americans in the 4 semiconductor companies I've worked at in the SF Bay Area, and barely more at Freescale in AZ.

Another curiosity to me is the high proportion of Vietnamese American PEs and TEs.

about 4 months ago

Comcast turning Chicago homes into Xfinity hotspots...

bagofbeans Security (1 comments)

"They'll look like two separate networks and they'll act like two separate networks," Nagel said. "Any use on the public side doesn't impact the private side."

Translation: You may wish to opt out.

about 6 months ago

Have a Privacy-Invasion Wishlist? Peruse NSA's Top Secret Catalog

bagofbeans Re:Fedora Linux Question (259 comments)

With US based commercial software they can compel the vendor to hand over the code, as pretty much all of the major vendors have already done.

Citations for that claim?

about 9 months ago

Mark Zuckerberg Gives $990 Million To Charity

bagofbeans Assumptions (230 comments)

Actually most of the people were presuming MZ is evil and incapable of doing anything without personal gain, rather than most rich people.

Yes, that's unfair. However, since MZ controls FB with his >50% holding, he is personally responsible for the continual bait-and-switch privacy behaviors at FB which no-one can claim is nice. Note also that most of this pattern occurred before FB had a 'fiscal duty to its shareholders'.

So it's not unreasonable to ask for a higher level of evidence before believing that BG or MZ are behaving altruistically.

about 9 months ago

The Cloud: Convenient Until a Stranger Nukes Your Files

bagofbeans The worrying bit: (262 comments)

Thanks to some no doubt heroic digital forensics, they had managed to locate and restore all my missing folders.

Actually I suspect nothing is really deleted, just marked inaccessible to the owner but still available to the cloud company and any subpoena or court order.

Please encrypt your stuff yourself (not the cloud's encryption) before uploading.

about a year ago

Intel Rolls Out Raspberry Pi Competitor

bagofbeans Need Bay Trail to have advantages (214 comments)

TFA mentioned next gen will use Bay Trail core (Atom Z3770), which is available with AES-NI. Now that is suddenly very useful for servers, because the encryption is fast (but still passes through the processor).

about a year ago

Lockbox Aims To NSA-Proof the Cloud

bagofbeans No US-based cloud service can really fight the NSA (292 comments)

There's fighting without fighting, as the late Mr Lee would say.

The problem is "NSA agents will descend upon them, and provide a legal order requiring" something, as you say.

Make that ineffective. Host end doesn't hold any keys is easy. No make the client end that uploads open source AND externalise the key handling and algo choice from the client. A script into Truecrypt is a crude example of externalising.

Now, if the upload client suddenly starts wanting keys or anything else unecessary the user will be suspicious, and the knowledgeable can scrutinise the code.

1 year,15 days

Members of Parliament Demand Explanation For Detention of David Miranda

bagofbeans Re:System may be working? (321 comments)

It's actually a little more subtle than that:

Terrorism Act 2000 Schedule 7
2(1)An examining officer may question a person to whom this paragraph applies for the purpose of determining whether he appears to be a person falling within section 40(1)(b).

5A person who is questioned under paragraph 2 or 3 must
(a)give the examining officer any information in his possession which the officer requests;
(b)give the examining officer on request either a valid passport which includes a photograph or another document which establishes his identity;
(c)declare whether he has with him documents of a kind specified by the examining officer;
(d)give the examining officer on request any document which he has with him and which is of a kind specified by the officer.

Also, under the "Examining Officers under the Terrorism Act 2000 Code of Practice" Code-of-Practice-for-Examin1.pdf:

The examining officer should advise the detained person that, under paragraph 5 of Schedule 7 to the Act he/she has a duty to give the officer all the information in his/her possession which the officer requests in connection with his determining whether the person appears to be, or have been, concerned in the commission preparation or instigation of acts of terrorism. The detained person should also be reminded that not complying with this duty is a criminal offence under paragraph 18(1) of Schedule 7 to the Act.

This means that one has to submit to full search of electronic stuff (decrypting where necessary), but questioning about stuff clearly irrelevant to terrorism need not be answered.

If Miranda was largely questioned about irrelevant stuff to use up the 9 hours, than that's something to take up with ECHR as abuse.

1 year,28 days

Mozilla Labs Experiment Distills Your History Into Interests

bagofbeans Re:Will this work? (158 comments)

As something did change. Thanks to Justin Amash and others, we are now aware which 217 Representatives are ok with NSA violating the constitution, and which 205 Representatives are not.

about a year ago


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