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Comments

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

boaworm Re:Last night (818 comments)

I travel frequently across the north sea, between Scandinavia and Iceland. This is a 3 hour flight I generally do in coach. A while ago i started thinking of the good old days, when the vikings travelled this distance as well. Lets compare

Option 1: Longboat
Duration: Several weeks
Onboard meal service: Dried fish, mead, old water
Comfort level: Cold, freezing, wet, damp, salty and sea sickness.
Entertainment: Rowing!
Restroom: "Overboard"
Risks: Likely to die from sickness, fall overboard, freeze to death or get beaten up by a fellow traveller (everyone is armed!)
On-time arrival: Not applicable

Option 2: 757-200 in Coach
Duration: 3 hours
Onboard meal service: Light snacks and drinks complimentary. Warm dishes for purchase
Comfort level: Leather seats, personal cooling available, good temperature.
Entertainment: Loads of videos
Restroom: Complimentary
Risks: Extremely unlikely to plummet into the ocean. Unlikely to get beaten up by a fellow traveller (noone is armed)
On-time arrival: 90%+. Sporadic 1 day delays due to Eyjafjallajökull

I thought of this for a moment, then sat down and enjoyed my private leather seat and in-flight entertainment in "coach".

about two weeks ago
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3 Recent Flights Make Unscheduled Landings, After Disputes Over Knee Room

boaworm Re:Today's business class is the 70s' economy clas (818 comments)

Well put. Prices have gone down drastically because of a number of factors.
* Less space per pax
* Better aircraft and engine
* Better utilization of aircraft
* Reduced service (drinks+meals moved to paid ancillaries)

Todays "coach" class really is no more than a bus. If you want comfort, upgrade. Else, suffer in silence :-)

about two weeks ago
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Iceland Stands Down On Travel Alert: From Orange To Red and Back Again

boaworm Re: OMG (29 comments)

Hekla is harly a major issue. She has erupted 5 or so times in the last 60 years with small amounts of ash and lava. She has no glacier on top of her.

about a month ago
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Planes Can Be Hacked Via Inflight Wi-fi, Says Researcher

boaworm Re:No they cant. (151 comments)

Or "Snakes on a Plane". Which for some strange reason never made it to the inflight entertainment systems :-(

about a month and a half ago
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Planes Can Be Hacked Via Inflight Wi-fi, Says Researcher

boaworm Re:No they cant. (151 comments)

They did not get into the aircraft avionics.

They got into the satellite communications for the Infotainment system.

NONE of the systems like that have any interconnection to avionics or telemetry.

The article isn't very clear on exactly what they managed to do, but it is quite possible that there is a shared satellite data communication system shared for infotainment systems and aircraft system status/updates/notifications alike. Hopefully with a robust QoS in place. So _if_ someone could break into the message routing, they could intercept and possibly create their own messages to send along the channel.

If you check TFA's quote:

In theory, a hacker could use a plane's onboard WiFi signal or inflight entertainment system to hack into its avionics equipment, potentially disrupting or modifying satellite communications, which could interfere with the aircraft's navigation and safety systems, Santamarta said.

Since a modern airline has lots of avionics communicating with the ground, it could be that some of those messages may be edited/interrupted/faked. That's not to say that you could rlogin to the FMS and alter flightplans, or alter the flight path in any way.

about a month and a half ago
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Planes Can Be Hacked Via Inflight Wi-fi, Says Researcher

boaworm Re:So, which is it? (151 comments)

For the "navigation" systems, he's not talking about GPS (even if he were it wouldn't be a big deal, airplanes can navigate just fine without GPS), but the communication system does send the GPS location, altitude, and speed back home. If that goes down, not a big deal because that's not what air traffic control relies on.

More and more aircraft and ATC centers support ADS-B transponders and data, which include a GPS-derived position (altitude + position) messages as a part of System Tracking (you can check out Eurocontrols Asterix cat62 protocol and ADS-B applications). Older MSSR radars will provide you with a rough estimate of the position and an assumed altitude based on the aircrafts built-in systems, which is being tracked using for example Kalman filters to predict the current and future position. Switching over to GPS as the primary source of positioning data is allowing tighter packing of aircraft (reduced horizontal and vertical separation rules), which is becoming critical for congested airports to reduce the time between takeoffs/landings, as well as to keep aircraft in holding patters packed tighter together.

Also, ADS-B can be sent as frequently as 1 message/second due to signals going down towards earth rather than in all directions. Current MSSR radars usually have a scan time of 5-12 seconds.

So interruptions with these data links (say someone hacks into it and manages to shut it down) would lead to the ATC center having to fall back on MSSR Tracking, meaning you will be violating horizontal and vertical separation rules until the controller can create more space around the aircraft again.

about a month and a half ago
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Planes Can Be Hacked Via Inflight Wi-fi, Says Researcher

boaworm Re:So, which is it? (151 comments)

The pilot can use these data link communication channels to make his/her life easier. As an example, when asking for a new flight level clearance, they can (given up2date Flight Management System computers) dispatch a digital message to ATC (Air Traffic Control) rather than using the radio. A bit like sending a text message. This can be far more reliable than long-range radio where the audio quality isn't great. Similarly, the ATC can confirm the flight level clearance (climb or descent) via a data message, rather than over radio. The FMS display will confirm, reject or propose alternatives.

I can imagine a couple of not so scary scenarios:
* Overloading the data link, causing other messages to be delayed and/or dropped. This means the pilot will have to fall back to radio and/or resend the message.
* Read in-flight reporting/confirmation data
* Read load manifests, fuel status updates, passenger manifests etc.
* Access what other passengers are watching on their inflight entertainment system
* Eavesdrop on other passengers' facebook chats

And some more scary ones (if the break-in allows access to flight data messages):
* Send/request ATC communication, clearance requests etc
* Flooding ATC stations/comms systems with bogus data, preventing efficient communication between aircraft (this, and others) and ATC

One would assume the fly-by-wire system is entirely isolated from this.

about a month and a half ago
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Do Apple and Google Sabotage Older Phones? What the Graphs Don't Show

boaworm Re:Graph is search results, not speed measurements (281 comments)

It is a bit strange they did not correlate to iOS releases, but iPhone releases.

I find it much more likely that when you upgrade to iOS+1, the new features slow your phone down. I've experienced that several times, my 3GS became "much slower" after upgrading it. The new iOS had more eye candy etc.

But that's not the same as saying the old hardware is slower.

about 2 months ago
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House Bill Would Mandate Smart Gun Tech By U.S. Manufacturers

boaworm Re:One word against this idea: gloves ... in winte (750 comments)

Cops in Minnesota in the dead of a winter snowstorm are just gonna LOVE this tech.

Yea.. i thought the same. Where I grew up, hunters use gloves when waiting for the game, it's simply too cold not to.

But maybe if you fill in a form of some sort, you can get an exemption from the requirement. That would solve the problem...

about a year ago
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House Bill Would Mandate Smart Gun Tech By U.S. Manufacturers

boaworm Re:A Better Idea (750 comments)

How about we actually fucking teach kids about guns, how they work, and what they're used for? That would do a hell of a lot more to curtail gun-related deaths, and without the (un)intended side effect of rendering personal protection weapons useless by legislative fiat.

I hit my brother with a baseball bat when I was 10. I was fully aware how a baseball bat worked at the time. I was simply very angry.

Looking back, I'm very happy it was a baseball bat and not a handgun.

about a year ago
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Transporting a 15-Meter-Wide, 600-Ton Magnet Cross Country

boaworm No tilt.. so lets move it over the ocean? (152 comments)

>> The trip will be tense, because the ring’s massive electromagnet cannot tilt or twist more than a few degrees, or the wiring inside will be irreparably damaged. It will float from New York Harbor in June, down the East Coast, around Florida, up the Gulf Coast and up the Mississippi River by July.

That seems rather risky. Most ships would at one point or another tilt more than a few degrees to either side due to .. waves. No mention on if this is a gyro-stabilized barge perhaps...

about a year ago
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So What If Yahoo's New Dads Get Less Leave Than Moms?

boaworm Re:Sexist (832 comments)

How would that work for surrogate mothers? Since they are the one who "gestates a fetus", they would get the 16 weeks. But I somehow doubt they will.

about a year ago
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"Dark Lightning" Could Expose Airline Passengers To Radiation

boaworm Re:Hrmmm (263 comments)

I always wear my tinfoil hat for this reason. It is a bit of a hazzle to get through security, but after that it's great!

about a year and a half ago
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Sandy Sinks HMS Bounty, Knocks Off Gawker Websites

boaworm Re:Huffington Post (238 comments)

... the markets will not be able to function properly if people can't get to their jobs in the financial district.

These people being at work seems to be the biggest problem with the market these days...

about 2 years ago
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Felix Baumgartner's Supersonic Skydive Attempt

boaworm Re:Redbull (271 comments)

the operator at the control center has a little bit of unfocused goofiness.

I don't give much for the "control center"... If you look at the youtube video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MrIxH6DToXQ) (7 hours 53 minutes long), at 4:52:12, they will state the following:

Altitude: 127861 ft/ 38972 meters
Temperature outside: 19.1F / -6.1C

Wtf?...

about 2 years ago
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FTC To Recommend Antitrust Case Against Google

boaworm Re:Really? (195 comments)

No but they sell ads. And people want to put their ads where people will see them. So it isn't much of a stretch to claim that they sell search.

They also sell sponsored results in their search results.

about 2 years ago
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Alan Cox to NVIDIA: You Can't Use DMA-BUF

boaworm Re:What Cox is saying... (946 comments)

Which requires that everything *else* in the driver be compatible with the GPL. Which...they aren't. So they can't.

It is almost like it spreads.. like Cancer....

about 2 years ago

Submissions

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Judge in TPB trial challenged

boaworm boaworm writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boaworm writes "As it turns out, the Judge in the much-debated The PirateBay trial, Tomas Norström, happens to be a member of several organisations working to strengthen and uphold copyright. He shares this membership with Henrik Pontén, head of the AntiPiracy Bureay, Peter Danowsky, prosecutor in the trial, and Monique Wadsted, the lawyer representing the media industry in the trial. The news is available in several major Swedish newspapers this morning, although it has not yet reached international (translated) media."
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The Best Job in the World - Island Caretaker Great

boaworm boaworm writes  |  more than 5 years ago

boaworm writes "Tired of your old job? Tourism Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, offers this job:

The role of Island Caretaker is a six-month contract, based on luxurious Hamilton Island in the Great Barrier Reef. It's a live-in position with flexible working hours and key responsibilities include exploring the islands of the Great Barrier Reef to discover what the area has to offer. Living above the Great Barrier Reef is a pretty unique benefit, but the successful candidate will also be paid a salary package of AUD $150,000 for the six-month contract. You'll receive return airfares from your nearest capital city (in your home country), accommodation and transport on Hamilton Island, travel insurance for the contract period, computer, internet, digital video and stills cameras access, plus travel to a number of the other Islands of the Great Barrier Reef. The six-month contract commences 1st July 2009

The full job offer can be found here"

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