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FAA Shuts Down Search-and-Rescue Drones

formfeed Re:Didn't you get the memo? Drones are for killing (218 comments)

The government wants to be the only group with drones and they like to use them for spying and killing rather than saving lives.

That might actually work.
Instead of calling it a "Search and Rescue Drone" call it an unmanned aerial surveillance vehicle that could be used by small units to safely scan unaccessible terrain. Then tell your local senator that you are a small start-up military contractor who needs help cutting some federal red tape to do real life testing of your beta model by using it in cooperation with local law enforcement.

(Be sure to pronounce "vehicle" as Vee-Hee-Kal and the word "federal" always with some disgust in your voice.)

about two weeks ago

Michael Bloomberg: You Can't Teach a Coal Miner To Code

formfeed But what about... (581 comments)

... the coal miner's daughter?

about two weeks ago

Michael Bloomberg: You Can't Teach a Coal Miner To Code

formfeed Re:He's right! (581 comments)

Yes. Unfortunately there are two messages implied in Bloomberg's statement:

1. When there is a major structural change in the industry, some people will get stranded. And retraining/reeducation will not solve all the problems. As a society we should 'have some compassion to do it gently.' Simply suggesting that everyone learns to code is idiotic and could only come from someone like the Zuck.

2. Coal miners are manual labor class beta minus. You can't teach them intellectual things.

Had he simply said "You can't teach every coal miner to code", he could have avoided stepping in #2

(I on the other hand enjoy dealing with intelligent people who do manual labor jobs. It is nice to have a HVAC contractor, who understands physics. If you watch something like ThisOldHouse, you can see what a difference a brain makes in a so called "manual labor" job. )

about two weeks ago

Seven Habits of Highly Effective Unix Admins

formfeed Beard (136 comments)

You really need to have a beard to get it. Do you have a beard? You don't sound like you have a proper beard.

Ehhh, of course you need a beard. But the article also says, to be successful you should remove spaghetti once in a while:

Habit 7: Make time for yourself
[... ]Taking care of yourself is an important part of doing a good job."

about two weeks ago

Fruit Flies, Fighter Jets Use Similar Evasive Tactics When Attacked

formfeed Re:Anyone (65 comments)

Anyone who has ever had these little bastards in their house ...

.. like in Virginia Beach?

about two weeks ago

Fruit Flies, Fighter Jets Use Similar Evasive Tactics When Attacked

formfeed Don't paint your house yellow (65 comments)

It will attract fighter jets.

about two weeks ago

Heartbleed coder: bug in OpenSSL was an honest mistake

formfeed An honest mistake? - Even better (1 comments)

The linked Sydney Morning Herald goes on:
"Despite denying he put the bug into the code intentionally, he said it was entirely possible intelligence agencies had been making use of it over the past two years."

One can assume said intelligence agencies would run their own software review and routinely check the source code of critical security software for obvious flaws. And if some agency even states Internet security as one of their goals, one can be certain they audit new patches.

It is very, very likely that they knew about this bug and used it to access servers outside their jurisdiction, where they couldn't simply access it with a letter in their hand. It being just an honest mistakes makes it even a sweeter deal, perfect deniability.

(And no, open source doesn't make a difference, if you wear the right colored tie, you can get any source code.)

about two weeks ago

OpenSSL Bug Allows Attackers To Read Memory In 64k Chunks

formfeed A few weaks -a few years. (303 comments)

"known for 2 years"

No, no, this has been the code part of the stable release of OpenSSL for 2 years. The bug has only been known by non-blackhats for up to a few weeks.

Yes, the heartbeat exploit popped up just recently.
But the bug which forces users to keep data in freed buffers has been known for at least 4 years. Tedunangst calls it "exploit mitigation countermeasures" ...

about two weeks ago

In the Unverified Digital World, Are Journalists and Bloggers Equal?

formfeed Re:Nice typo (156 comments)

which attempts to education journalists in how to process

We should attempts to education the editors in how to process a story!

Do not tempt the editors in how to educate the story process!

about a month ago

L.A. Police: All Cars In L.A. Are Under Investigation

formfeed Re:Everyone is a potential criminal in L.A. (405 comments)

Actually the systems inevitably self destruct. Psychopathic societies run by psychopaths must fail because that is their nature,...

Yes, but sometimes that takes 300-400 years.

about a month ago

Fake PGP Keys For Crypto Developers Found

formfeed Re:"intelligence agencies" = JEWS... (110 comments)

What's with all the Jew talk today?

The topic brings out the conspiracy nuts.

about a month ago

Fake PGP Keys For Crypto Developers Found

formfeed Not broken, just fud-ed (110 comments)

What if the intention isn't on cracking it but just on spreading FUD?

People are pissed off right now. That Snowden thing just isn't going away and people are looking into encrypted email options. Even people who never thought of using pgp (or regarded it as something for paranoid conspiracy theory nuts) would use it now, if it just came as an easy clickable option.

If you're some government agency, that doesn't look desirable. To make things worse, it's a web of trust, one of these pesky decentralized models. Unlike with a central certification authority, trusting one signature doesn't translate into trusting others. But on the other hand, there is no single CA that can be compromised. If you are a government agency in the business of undermining privacy, you would have to attack it one user at a time. Quite frustrating.

What to do about it?
Create some headlines like:

Fake PGP Keys For Crypto Developers Found

Hmm- looks that isn't safe either. Not worth the effort trying it out I guess.

about a month ago

How Did Bill Nye Become the Science Guy?

formfeed In Summary.. (220 comments)

...he's not much of a "science" guy, ...
... captain obvious ...
... He's no scientist. ...
... Bill Nye the Attention Whore ...
... Mr. Bill Nye is NOT and has NOTHING to do with science ...

This out of 31 posts so far.
This on a guy who makes science fun for kids.

Beta might not be Slashdot's biggest problem,
but going the way of kuro5hin is.

about a month ago

Belgian Barrels Reveal History of Human Gut Microbes

formfeed Re:How are These Two Stories Related? (56 comments)

I read both stories, can't quite figure out why we needed a double header. There's nothing related between the two articles

This way very few comments will be "off topic"

about 2 months ago

Elon Musk Says Larger Batteries Might Be On the Way

formfeed Not helpful. (191 comments)

Elon Musk Says Larger Batteries Might Be On the Way

Making batteries larger is easy and pointless,
storing more energy without making them larger would be great.

I didn't read TFA, of course.
Just judging from the headline, which I assume is an accurate summary.

about 2 months ago

What Would You Do With the World's Most Powerful Laser?

formfeed What everyone else does with a laser of course.. (143 comments)

- cut out some plywood enclosure for your raspi or arduino.
- try to etch some copper off a pcb while looking at the reflection.
- mount it on a quad copter and shoot around in the neighborhood, then post it on youtube.
- try building a projector and accidentally burn down city hall.

about 2 months ago

Getting Young Women Interested In Open Source

formfeed Re:Brain Change (545 comments)

So... how was it that women's brains were "wired" for programming from 1940 to 1985 [1], but suddenly around 1990 they stopped being interested in "coding" and "IT"?


Easy: The rise of OOp
Women didn't want to be objectified.

about 3 months ago

New England Burns Jet Fuel To Keep Lights On

formfeed Cold, Starvation, Cannibalism.. (230 comments)

Burning Jet fuel is just the beginning..
Historically, it's not uncommon for some New England colonies not to make it through the winter.

about 3 months ago

Michaels Stores Investigating Possible Data Breach

formfeed Easy one to catch (106 comments)

Put a block on your card to issue a warning as soon as someone buys anything with your credit card other than scrap-booking supplies or boxed wine.

about 3 months ago

CmdrTaco Launches Trove, a Curated News Startup

formfeed Opinion bubble (221 comments)

The best news stories picked by people who share your interests.

There's the problem, right on the launch page.

about 3 months ago



Social influence and the wisdom of crowd effect

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 2 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "A lot has been written lately on the crowd effect and the wisdom of crowds. But for those of us doubtful of the masses, PNAS (Proceedings of the National Academy of Science) came up with a study showing how masses can become dumber:
Social influence.

While previous studies show how groups of people can come up with remarkably accurate results, it seems " that even mild social influence can undermine the wisdom of crowd effect in simple estimation tasks." Social influence "diminishes the diversity of the crowd without improvements of its collective error".

In short, crowd intelligence only works in cases where the opinion of others is hidden. So, slashdot moderation good, American pundit-democracy bad?"

Link to Original Source

Fukushima Meltdown: Earthquake not Tsunami

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 2 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "As the data from the Fukushima reactor is being reviewed it looks like the meltdown happened much earlier: "the fuel rods in the No. 1 reactor were completely exposed to the air and rapidly heating five hours after the quake."

Apparently, the earthquake had caused a crack in the containment vessel. Which means, that even without the generators failing, the meltdown might still have happened.

With this new data, it seems a similar incident could happen in an earthquake zone even without a tsunami."

Link to Original Source

Wikileaks took advice from media outlets

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 3 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "According to the AP (through Google News), Wikileaks isn't just sitting on the recent material so they can release it bit by bit to the press, as many people implied. On the contrary, it's quite the other way around: "only after considering advice from five news organizations with which it chose to share all of the material" are they releasing it themselves. These Newspapers "have been advising WikiLeaks on which documents to release publicly and what redactions to make to those documents"

AP questions whether Wikileaks will follow these redactions, but nevertheless seems quite impressed by this "extraordinary collaboration between some of the world's most respected media outlets and the WikiLeaks organization""

Link to Original Source

Ubuntu moving to rolling releases

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 3 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "The register claims that "Ubuntu is moving away from its established six-month-cycle and potentially to a future where software updates land on a daily basis."
While this sounds like a sudden change, it is apparently more of a long-term thought. The Register quotes Shuttleworth:

"Today we have a six-month release cycle," Shuttleworth said. "In an internet-oriented world, we need to be able to release something every day. "That's an area we will put a lot of work into in the next five years. The small steps we are putting in to the Software Center today, they will go further and caster than people might have envisioned in the past."

But given that many of Shuttleworth's thoughts became decisions later on, it might be interesting to see, where this one leads.

Interestingly enough, 5 years is about the time, when Ubuntu will run out of letters."

Link to Original Source


How to become an old white guy and move to Canada

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 3 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "The Toronto Star has a story how a young man from Hong Kong disguised himself as an old white guy, so he could get on a flight to Canada, where he asked for Asylum.

Not only did he wear a — really believable — silicone mask, he apparently had also studied his role pretty well. Don' t know how he did it, but since he didn't wear a plaid shirt, his character can' t be based on the Red Green show."

Link to Original Source

Oh nos: Hole in linux kernel exploited in the wild

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 3 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "Heise (http://www.h-online.com/open/news/item/Hole-in-Linux-kernel-provides-root-rights-1081317.html) reports about a new hole in the linux kernel, that allows a local user to get root access. A proof of concept exploit is available. The hole has apparently been fixed years ago, but reopened recently. Hmmm.."

Mom charged for son's dry ice experiment.

formfeed formfeed writes  |  more than 3 years ago

formfeed (703859) writes "This just in from the you-must-be-kidding-me department:

Police was called to a house in Omaha where a 14 year old made some "dry ice bombs" ( dry ice in soda bottles).

Since the mom knew about it, she is now facing felony charges for child abuse and possession of a destructive device."

Link to Original Source


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