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Why No One Trusts Facebook To Power the Future

gringer Re:Getting blocked? (218 comments)

Every day I'm more and more glad that I have never had an account, and never will.

I'm in the same boat, but I'm not deluding myself by thinking that Facebook doesn't have a shadow account for me -- this has been confirmed to have been done in the past. Facebook is probably aware that I exist, and they obtain some benefit from being able to identify me in photos or posts (for example) and tracking my actions.

about two weeks ago
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Free (Gratis) Version of Windows Could Be a Reality Soon

gringer Re:I could use it (392 comments)

The one I had written in 2003 would randomly change table margins when I add or select something. I mean freaking random where the only experience close is like designing a website in IE 6 where you do one thing and all the elements freak out and go apeshit.

So what makes you think this will look the same on the computers of all those people with Office who view your CV?

about a month and a half ago
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Government To Require Vehicle-to-vehicle Communication

gringer LED communication (390 comments)

I'm okay with this as long as it is restricted to line-of-sight, in other words via LED or similar light transmission. That also removes some confusion issues, because if a car communicates "I'm stopping now", you know it's the car that you can see rather than the car 1km behind you that was hit by a stray radio amplification patch.

about 2 months ago
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Why Standard Deviation Should Be Retired From Scientific Use

gringer Re:Issues (312 comments)

Two different results from the same data points. Have I misunderstood something?

I believe it should be mean absolute deviation from the mean, rather than from the next value in the list (this wasn't particularly clear in the summary or the article). So you have three numbers, mean = (1 + 2 + 10) / 3 ~= 4.3333, MAD ~= (3.333 + 2.333 + 5.666) / 3 ~= 3.778

There's another MAD, the median absolute deviation from the median, so you have for this data set median = 2, MAD = median(1, 0, 8) = 1.

about 3 months ago
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Steam Controller Hands-on

gringer A gentle push from Steam (138 comments)

Well, it's not like you're being steamrolled into accepting this as an input device. With an open platform, you should be free to use whatever input device you want.

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Would You Secure Your Parents' PC?

gringer Free software *before* OS (408 comments)

Always introduce them to free software before the switch to Linux. It's far too much of a change to do both at the same time, and they'll reject the change entirely. Once they get used to free software on Windows, they can use the same things in the same way on Linux.

about 4 months ago
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Death and the NSA: A Q&A With Bruce Schneier

gringer Re:I thought (149 comments)

That's a strong assumption that the upper bound is the math. We haven't seen the rest of Snowden's documents.

I think one of the points in saying this is what it leads to. If the upper bound is the mathematics, and the mathematics is weak (e.g. triple ROT13), then you can't get any more security than that. Well, you sort of can, but that's security through obscurity, or security theatre, which is a fairly weak stance to take.

about 5 months ago
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MATE To Make It Into Debian Repositories

gringer Re:A problem (152 comments)

What iconography would you suggest replace the floppy disk for save? The down arrow and some bits? No, That's download.

Please explain how "download" is different from "save" from a naive computer user's point of view. In both cases, you have an object somewhere that can be considered transient / temporary, and you hope that by carrying out the operation you're transferring it to a more permanent storage medium.

about 5 months ago
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Dark Wallet Will Make Bitcoin Accessible For All — Except the Feds

gringer Re:Deceased owners (206 comments)

Would someone please explain what happens to BitCoins whose owners die without passing on their wallets to successors?

Until someone can work out what the password / key is, the bitcoins will be unable to be used by anyone else -- the value of the remaining bitcoins will probably increase. If someone *is* able to work out what that password / key is, then the value of all bitcoins will drop.

about 6 months ago
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Finnish Team Makes Diabetes Vaccine Breakthrough

gringer False positives (202 comments)

Hmm, I wonder if this explains the false positive results I got when trying to find genetic markers for T1D risk (chapter 5 of my thesis).

about 6 months ago
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Battlefield Director: Linux Only Needs One 'Killer' Game To Explode

gringer Re:YOLD! (410 comments)

It's not FUD if it's true, it's simply FACT

You can make someone scared, uncertain and doubtful about your sanity by stating that they've got thousands of little hairs that they can't see on their face, and you enjoy cutting hairs that are very close to the skin using a razor blade. And then mention there might be a little blood involved, but you're game to give it a try.

My point is, it's perfectly possible to generate FUD by bending the truth (otherwise known by salespeople as "stating FACTs").

about 6 months ago
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Valve Announces Steam Controller

gringer Alternative name (317 comments)

I propose that Valve call this thing the Steam 'roller

about 7 months ago
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Valve Announces Steam Controller

gringer Dual pointer input on a desktop (317 comments)

I'd be interested in using this as an input device on a desktop computer. If you configure the circular pads to act like the rubber nipples, with something like a logarithmic transform to increase precision for centre movement and increase travel speed for the edges, then I can picture this being more useful than a mouse. Couple that with multi-pointer manipulation, and you get your usual pinch / zoom / rotate movements that are becoming more common as a "everyone knows how to do it" input method.

about 7 months ago
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Research Shows E-Cigs Might Be As Good For Quitting As Nicotine Patches

gringer Re:Might be? (314 comments)

I don't know what those guys are doing to the tobacco in manufactured smokes, but it's something evil.

Current research (done by someone I was in biomedical science classes with) suggests that monoamine oxidase inhibitors may have a role in the increased addiction of cigarettes over plain tobacco -- although that article in particular suggests people using roll-your-own tobacco may have a harder time quitting.

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Speeding Up Personal Anti-Spam Filters?

gringer Re:quit wasting your time (190 comments)

there are million dollar companies that can detect it faster and even better than your OSS bullshit half assed script for free

The NSA, for example. Use a US server as your email service provider, and you get filtering for free!

about 8 months ago
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Ubuntu Edge Draws Nearly $13M, But Falls Short of Indiegogo Goal

gringer Re:Loaned? (125 comments)

On KS projects, your donation is more of a pledge, which only goes through if the target is made by the end-date of the project.

Indiegogo allows you to set up "flexible funding" (not used for the Edge case) where all donated money goes to the project even if it doesn't reach its funding goal.

about 8 months ago
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New Technique Creates 3D Images Through a Single Lens

gringer Kaleidocamera can do this as well (56 comments)

Saarland University developed a reconfigurable camera add-on, the kaleidocam which can do 3D as well as many other things. It allows you to take a single picture that is split by the device into multiple images that appear on the sensor as an array of smaller images. Possible functions include:

  • Multi-spectral imaging (including simulation of different white points and source lighting)
  • Light field imaging (3D, focal length change, depth of field change)
  • Polarised imaging (e.g. glass stress, pictures of smoke in natural light)

Of course, this requires a single shot using a fancy lens, whereas the Harvard technique needs two frames but "no unusual hardware or fancy lenses".

about 8 months ago

Submissions

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Dotcom MegaUpload case Gets More Complex

gringer gringer writes  |  about a year and a half ago

gringer (252588) writes "The MegaUpload case against Kim Dotcom is proving to be a bit of a nightmare for the New Zealand government. Some information that was used as evidence against Dotcom was gathered illegally, and may not be able to be given to Kim or his lawyers for their defence in his extradition hearing. This is a continuation of an earlier hearing, where it was found that search and seizure operations carried out during the raid on Kim's residence were illegal."
Link to Original Source
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DNS flaw: it hits more than just the web

gringer gringer writes  |  more than 5 years ago

gringer (252588) writes "Dan Kaminsky presented at the Black Hat conference in Las Vegas on Wednesday, and said that the DNS vulnerability he discovered is much more dangerous than most have appreciated. Besides hijacking web browsers, hackers might attack email services and spam filters, FTP, Rsync, BitTorrent, Telnet, SSH, as well as SSL services. Ultimately it's not a question of which systems can be attacked by exploiting the flaw, but rather which ones cannot. Then again, it could just be hype. For more information, see Kaminsky's power point presentation."
Link to Original Source
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"Silent" Mutations Heard by the Cancer Cel

gringer gringer writes  |  more than 6 years ago

gringer writes "Digging through a washington post article (found via digg), I came across this little surprising statement:

Earlier this year, however, a study in Science showed that these synonymous spellings can make a difference. That's because it can be harder to make a protein from the instruction with the unusual, but synonymous, spelling. The construction process takes longer, and the final protein folds up differently. It has a slightly different shape — and a different function.
Synonymous mutations are those that produce exactly the same string of amino acids for a gene, and so have been though to only be used as an "error robust" system, so that important proteins still function as usual in the presence of errors. This finding is a contradiction to that, where a "redundant" change in the DNA still affects the behaviour of the final product. In this case, the mutations are happening in a gene that contributes to the multi-drug resistant behaviour of cancer cells.

The abstract for the paper they seem to be referring to can be found here."

Link to Original Source

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