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Comments

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Encrypted PIN Data Taken In Target Breach

hargrand Re:3des (213 comments)

From the first article linked:

The PIN information is encrypted within Target’s systems and can only be decrypted when it is received by our external, independent payment processor. What this means is that the “key” necessary to decrypt that data has never existed within Target’s system and could not have been taken during this incident.

about 4 months ago
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Encrypted PIN Data Taken In Target Breach

hargrand Re:Can encyption experts chime in? (213 comments)

You're assuming the PIN was in any way related to the 3DES key. That's almost certainly not the case. More likely, Target requests a transaction key from the bank which is then used to encrypt the PIN and sent the encrypted PIN to the bank. The bank then decrypts the PIN using the 3DES key and verifies the PIN.

They probably should switch to RSA or some other public key algorithm. With 3DES, both parties need to share the key. With RSA, there is a public key and a matched private key. If the public key is compromised, it's no big deal. Since the bank retains the private key and doesn't share it, it's at least theoretically more secure for this kind of transaction.

about 4 months ago
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Encrypted PIN Data Taken In Target Breach

hargrand Re:3des (213 comments)

The article also says "Target does not have access to nor does it store the encryption key within our system." The problem is that 3DES is a symmetric encryption algorithm; both parties need to share the same key to encrypt or decrypt anything. So at some point, they needed to have a key for the transaction.

about 4 months ago
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China Creates Air Defence Zone Over Japan-Controlled Islands, Issues War Threat

hargrand Re:Most of this will be about internal politics (519 comments)

I think you'll find the Japanese consider China's intent to wrest control of the Senkakus from Japan's administrative control as an aggressive act... or do you consider Japan to be "on the other side of the planet" from China? The U.S. considers it aggressive (to the extent the Obama administration has a coherent foreign policy which can be differentiated from abject appeasement at least) because it has important strategic allies in the area, namely Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, the Philippines and other Southeast Asian nations. In economic terms China is also an important trading partner to the U.S., and anything which destabilizes the area, or interferes with the flow of trade will impact this partnership to the detriment of both. And lastly, the U.S. has a possession in the area (i.e. Guam), not to mention its treaty obligations to assist the Japanese from outside threats.

Failure to recognize these and to take them into account, while may be good from a "rose colored glasses" perspective, is nonetheless both naive and ignorant.

about 5 months ago
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China Creates Air Defence Zone Over Japan-Controlled Islands, Issues War Threat

hargrand Re:Most of this will be about internal politics (519 comments)

It's more than purely symbolic. There are extensive undeveloped natural resources in the area which the Chinese would like to control. The islands also lie at a strategic location between the Pacific and the East China Sea, and just north of Taiwan. If the Japanese, Americans and Taiwanese do nothing to abate this, the Chinese will be emboldened to act more aggressively in the area.

about 5 months ago
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The Smog To Fog Challenge: Settling the High-Speed Rail vs. Hyperloop Debate

hargrand Re:No. (333 comments)

In Kelo v. City of New London, SCOTUS decided a municipality could use eminent domain to transfer property from one private owner to another.

about 8 months ago
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Beware the Internet

hargrand The real threat of the Internet (314 comments)

I thought the real threat of the Internet was the time people waste posting to FB or reading /. comments. Think of all that lost productivity.

about 9 months ago
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US CEO Says French Workers Have Three-Hour Work Day

hargrand Re:Why talk for 3 hours? (1313 comments)

It's France... they talk to enjoy the sound of their language.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Is Your Favorite Monitor For Programming?

hargrand Coding Horror... (375 comments)

Jeff Atwood had good things to say on his blog about some of the no-name monitors you're talking about.

about a year ago
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Iran Unveils Its Own Stealth Fighter Jet, the Qaher F-313

hargrand What about the second flight... (260 comments)

Footage from state TV showed the jet in flight, but not its take-off or landing

Just because they can get it into the air once, doesn't mean they can do so a second time ... assuming it's not part of some Photoshop Air Force.

about a year ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

I respectfully decline to tilt at your strawmen a second time, and instead leave you with the following, which summarizes the ideal Christian perspective on how we are to live in this world.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,
gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Galatians 5:22-23

You would do well to exhibit some of these qualities. Farewell.

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

By asking ourselves what can make us, and those around us happy.
By asking ourselves how we can reduce harm and suffering.
By not taking good and evil for granted.

If there is no objective moral standard, then why are these important? And why is it important I agree with you? If there's no absolute moral standard, then why have you spent all this time arguing with me to get me to see your notion of "reason" and convince me to adopt your worldview?

Much less responsiblity.

Different responsibilities perhaps not less. Yes, it's spelled out for me what's right and wrong, but I still need to judge my own actions against that standard. And if that's not what you do, then you get to create the standards as you go along with only retrospection to serve as a guide.

Maybe one day your God will tell you (or someone with similar beliefs) to kill all those that don't "love" Him enough.

God chooses not to act in a manner which is contrary to His nature which is in perfect alignment with the objective moral truth you dismiss as anachronistic.

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

For the sake of argument, let's assume you're correct and that God does not exist. What are the logical consequences?

First, if God does not exist, then there is none to perfectly judge our actions against an objective moral truth.

If there is none to perfectly judge our actions against an objective moral truth, then no judgement of our actions against such an objective moral truth can be made.

If there is no judgement of our actions against an objective moral truth can be made, then the entire notion of an objective moral truth is meaningless, for there are no consequences for violating it.

If there is no meaningful objective moral truth, your notion of good and evil is likewise meaningless, making statements like "There are a MILLIONS of good people out there." completely irrational.

If there is no meaning to the notion of good and evil then we can justify or condemn what ever we want and give it whatever label we think is appropriate (which is precisely what you've been doing during this discourse).

You can't have it both ways. You are either irrational for labeling my beliefs as evil or you are implicitly acknowledging there is an meaningful objective truth, defining the terms to which you appeal and therefore implying there is One to judge such. You may not like the consequences, you may not care for the attitudes of the Judge, but that doesn't impact the Truth one bit.

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

Love me or I will torture you.

You're reading too much into it. God is not in Hell, and He is not torturing anybody. He may relegate those who choose Hell over Him to their choice, but He is not there... as I said earlier, there is nothing there.

You are an evil being and a morally bankrupt person.

In order to make such an assertion, you have to draw upon some sort of objective moral truth; from where did it arise? What is its origin?

And would any notion of civility be within your notion of such an objective moral truth? If so, you might want to pay attention to what it's telling you.

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

you didn't have the balls to tell me that a just men deserves to be tortured for eternity,

Because there is no such thing as a just or good person, not Abraham Lincoln, not Ghandi, not Al Gore, not Billy Graham, not Mother Theresa, not you, not me; none are good, none are just, except for Jesus; He alone is good because He was and is God. From a Christian perspective, your basic premise is flawed.

"5) Would you kill, rape and pillage if God told you so? (There seem to be precedents in the Bible...)
I suppose I would be required to do so, which after all was the context God used in the case of the Israelites entering Canaan."
You are an evil being and a morally bankrupt person.

Nice the way edited that to make me seem to have said something I didn't say. I served for 20 years in the military. I was never called to actually take the life of another human being. But I would have done so, not gladly, not happily, but because it would have been my duty to do so to protect, among other things, the rights of the individual to hold beliefs, even beliefs such as yours. That is the context under which I would have taken the life of another human being. That is the context under which I would have seized or destroyed the property of another country. I would not have raped anyone regardless of who was ordering me to do so in part because there is no military reason for doing so, but also because the notion is repugnant to me. Was that a clear enough response to your hypothetical question?

There are other things I should respond to, and will in the course of time. But these I couldn't let pass without some sort of immediate response.

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

Not sure what you mean by running away from the issues. I thought I answered them, but apparently not to your satisfaction. So, I'll try again.

1) Why do Christians believe in an afterlife of eternal torment?

We all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). The wages of sin is death (Romans 6:23). Judgment of the dead (Revelation 20:11-15).

As a Christian, I firmly believe we have all sinned against a holy and just God; it's in our human nature to sin. We sin with every lie we utter, every time we have a lustful thought, every time we say something unkind to somebody else (Matthew 5:21-30). These are sins not only against others, but against God (Exodus 20:1-17), since we are each made in His image (Genesis 1:26). So what exactly should the punishment be for sinning against an infinite God? Should it not likewise be infinite? It is for these sins we are judged and cast out of the presence of God.

But that's not the end of the story. In addition to His just nature, God also desires us to have fellowship with Him. It is the purpose of our existence; it's why He made us. But He made us with the ability to either love Him in return, or to reject Him... it is our choice. But since we have sinned, we have no hope in anything we can do to overcome the death we have rightfully obtained through our sin. Therefore, since we can do nothing to save ourselves, and God still desires to be merciful to us, He sent His son to do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. He was and is without sin (Hebrews 4:15) and became the perfect sacrifice to atone for our sins (Hebrews 10:1-18).

So, God has given us a choice. We can chose to believe He is real and trust He has provided for our salvation, and act accordingly, or we can choose to turn our back on Him and all that He has to offer us. God does not condemn anybody to Hell who hasn't already made the choice to go there.

2) Why do you believe different stuff from them?

What stuff would that be? If you're talking about believing whether or not the universe exists, I think most Christians would agree that it does. If you ask them to prove that it does, they will likely give you the same response you gave me ... of course it exists.

My point in that is to show that even atheists have to have faith. Even if you could prove the universe is real, you would still have to rely upon axioms which cannot be proven... they would be the assumptions you would have to make to draw your conclusions. That's the way logic and philosophy and mathematics all work. You start with axioms you assume to be true and draw conclusions from those. If a particular axiom can be shown true without relying upon itself, but only on some subset of the other axioms, it ceases to be an axiom, and instead becomes a conclusion or a theorem or a consequence of the others.

3) Why do you believe that it is just and merciful to punish someone strictly for her beliefs?

I believe it would be less merciful to force somebody into God's presence when they never wanted to be there in the first place.

4) Why don't you believe in Santa Claus?

My parents told me so, and I trust them.

5) Would you kill, rape and pillage if God told you so? (There seem to be precedents in the Bible...)

Slight correction: There is no place in the Bible where God instructed anybody to rape somebody else. Rapes are recorded in the Bible, but never at the instruction of God. I'll concede that God carved out the area we now call Israel for the Israelites after they came out of Egypt, and that during this conquest, the Israelites were instructed to kill and in some cases pillage. That said, what you're asking is highly hypothetical, and I can't conceive of an instance where God would call me to do those things. My country might, and I have a responsibility to render unto Caesar (Mark 12:13-17) and to be subject to those in authority over me (Titus 3:1), so from that context, I suppose I would be required to do so, which after all was the context God used in the case of the Israelites entering Canaan.

6) Have you ever heard about Euthyphro's dilemma?

I think I had heard of it before. Not sure I have much to add to it since it remains a more or less open question since first posed. If you're suggesting it somehow denies the existence of God, there are plenty of contemporary theologians as well as those from antiquity who would disagree with you if they were presented with the opportunity to discuss it with you.

My turn:

I asked "Against what standard do you judge me as evil?" To which you responded "Against human innate compassion. Against that trait that allowed us to evolve as social animals, and can be seen in many social animals."

Are humans really all that compassionate? Many are not; many are downright malicious. What makes your sense of compassion right but theirs less so? For that matter, what about people with whom I have interacted on a regular basis over the course of my life who think somewhat more highly of me than you seem to (I'll concede there aren't many of them, but there are a few). Why are they wrong, but you're not?

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

And here is another one. Personally I don't believe the universe is just a big simulation, but to completely dismiss the idea without any proof one way or the other ...

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

And I'm not the only one who has considered this possibility.

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

Let's start with some small steps then.

I think you are stupid and evil.

Against what standard do you judge me as evil?

about a year and a half ago
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Saudi Arabia Calls For Global Internet Censorship Body

hargrand Re:no (678 comments)

So reading between the lines, it seems you value the dignity of the individual, yet you're appealing only to cultural constraints to justify that dignity. If it is just a cultural artifact then certainly other cultures are free to reject that dignity (and many do) and by extension the notion of consent (and again, many do). What makes your view correct and the view of those others somehow any less correct?

I'm not sure what you are going for, but there it is

You'd understand if you read either of the first two books I mentioned. Like I said, this is going to take some time.

about a year and a half ago

Submissions

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White House quadruples "We the People" petition signature requirements

hargrand hargrand writes  |  about a year ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "Citing popularity of its 'We the People' site, the White House has announce it will now require 100,000 signatures before responding to the petitions 'We the People' submit."
Link to Original Source
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Navy tests Mach 8 Electromagnetic Railgun

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 3 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "Wired magazine has a story and publicly released video of the Navy test firing of a 32 megajoule electromagnetic railgun.

Reporters were invited to watch the test at the Dalghren Naval Surface Warfare Center. A tangle of two-inch thick coaxial cables hooked up to stacks of refrigerator-sized capacitors took five minutes to power juice into a gun the size of a schoolbus built in a warehouse. With a 1.5-million-ampere spark of light and a boom audible in a room 50 feet away, the bullet left the gun at a speed of Mach 8.

"

Link to Original Source
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Operating on Encrypted Data

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 3 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "Nigel Smart, Professor of Cryptology in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Bristol, will present a paper in Paris this week [Friday 28 May], which makes a step towards a fully practical system to compute on encrypted data. The work could have wide ranging impact on areas as diverse as database access, electronic auctions and electronic voting.

Professor Smart said: “Our scheme allows for computations to be performed on encrypted data, so it may eventually allow for the creation of systems in which you can store data remotely in a secure manner and still be able to access it.”"

Link to Original Source
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Court Rules FCC Can't Enforce Net-Neutrality

hargrand hargrand writes  |  about 4 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "CNET Reports that:

The Federal Communications Commission does not have the legal authority to slap Net neutrality regulations on Internet providers, a federal appeals court ruled Tuesday.

A three-judge panel in Washington, D.C. unanimously tossed out the FCC's August 2008 cease and desist order against Comcast, which had taken measures to slow BitTorrent transfers and had voluntarily ended them earlier that year."
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Department of Education Purchasing 27 Shotguns

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 4 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "The U.S. Department of Education (ED) intends to purchase twenty-seven (27) REMINGTON BRAND MODEL 870 POLICE 12/14P MOD GRWC XS4 KXCS SF. RAMAC #24587 GAUGE: 12 BARREL: 14" — PARKERIZED CHOKE: MODIFIED SIGHTS: GHOST RING REAR WILSON COMBAT; FRONT — XS CONTOUR BEAD SIGHT STOCK: KNOXX REDUCE RECOIL ADJUSTABLE STOCK FORE-END: SPEEDFEED SPORT-SOLID — 14". Place of delivery Place of Delivery: U.S. Department of Education Office of Inspector General, Chicago, IL"
Link to Original Source
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White House collects Web users' data without notic

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 4 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "The White House is collecting and storing comments and videos placed on its social-networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube without notifying or asking the consent of the site users ... Marc Rotenberg, president of the Electronic Privacy Information Center, said the White House signaled that it would insist on open dealings with Internet users and, in fact, should feel obliged to disclose that it is collecting such information."
Link to Original Source
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Comet Lulin At Peak Visibility 24 Feb

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 5 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "During the next few weeks, a fine comet bright enough for observation in binoculars and possibly even with the naked eye will provide a fine skywatching target when weather permits. Comet Lulin will be closest to Earth on Feb. 24 and prime viewing will occur then and on surrounding nights. For sharp-eye viewers with dark, rural, skies, the comet is expected to be visible as a dim, fuzzy star."
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Obama to name Melissa Hathaway cybersecurity chief

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 5 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "President Obama has found the cyber tsar to head his new White House office of cybersecurity. According to US press reports this morning, an announcement expected later today will confirm Melissa Hathaway is to come in as cyber chief, after being cyber coordination executive for the director of national intelligence."
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Air Force Suspends Cyber Command

hargrand hargrand writes  |  more than 5 years ago

hargrand (1301911) writes "The Air Force on Monday suspended all efforts related to development of a program to become the dominant service in cyberspace, according to knowledgeable sources. Top Air Force officials put a halt to all activities related to the establishment of the Cyber Command, a provisional unit that is currently part of the 8th Air Force at Barksdale Air Force Base in Louisiana..."

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