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School Official Sues Over MySpace Page

hotspotbloc Re:Follow the money (527 comments)

Yeah, I think these guys got us all beat by a long shot. You know, the guys that blamed AIDS on homosexuals and other "evil doers" saying "they deserved it". Funny that Dobson, Falwell, Robertson, Ralph Reed, et al never apologized for their truly hate filled comments they spewed for many years. Oh, here's the definition of "intolerance" to clear up your confusion. BTW, I love the fact that these guys make millions of dollars every year for their own pockets on their flavor of hate speech too.

I'm fine with christians. I have friends that are good christians, kind and a great example to others. That, to me, helps make a good christian and good person. I have a problem when people, like Dobson's "freakfest", decide to tell everyone else how to live their lives. When funds donated for "religious" activities end up lobbying the government to take away established freedoms (like possibly this case in point: taking an obvious trolling, hammering the point home with big-dollar legal firm for possible use in future SLAPP suits).

What you have clearly missed is that someone else is pulling the strings here, not the plaintiff and certainly not the defendants who could possibly be driven to total insolvency.

When you open your eyes to the real world come back and write something worth posting.

more than 8 years ago


hotspotbloc hasn't submitted any stories.



GIFs for your boss' desktop and Penn Jillette

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 8 years ago Say it in a .gif ...
Don't worry, they're rated G but will still get your ass canned =) : http://bureaucrash.com/photos/desktops?from=0. I like this one.

Penn Jillette
Episodes of "Penn & Teller: Bullshit" are on Google Video for free (here's a start). I suspect they'll get pulled like "Fear and Loathing" did, but still, grab it like it's riot. He's also on the radio. Good show but streaming setup sucks big time. Thanks to a little help from Ethereal* was able to divine the beef (and man it was buried like no other) for the non-MS-Windows world: web site front end (urr ...), rss feed and direct asf feed (1400ET) which works under Ubuntu with mplayer and the ugly codecs.

*Shit, the US Govt gonna outlaw Ethereal someday and going to miss it so much ...


Could "What the Hack" make it in the US?

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 8 years ago Backround:
- http://wiki.whatthehack.org/index.php/Main_Page
- Schedule for day: 1, 2, 3 and 4 (last year)
- http://www.flickr.com/photos/tags/whatthehack/show/
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/What_The_Hack

So the question is could something like it work in the US? My first guess would somewhere in the North East at some campgrounds. What lectures and vendors would you have? I'm thinking keeping the admission price limited to camping cost with vendor fees going to pay stipends/travel costs. No registration other than general that would include camping. Also regulated food prices (nothing like seeing a $5 bottle of water to ruin one's day).

Any thoughts? Personally I'm tired of trade shows staffed by one company marketing rep and a bunch of temps and want something different.


Needed: Decent used computer reseller in MA

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 8 years ago Does anyone know of an used computer shop or wholesaler with a good selection (like atleast 100 on hand) of boxes in Massachusetts? I need to buy some and was looking for real Big Blue PII/PIII NetVistas or PL/GL series (no OS) for a resonable price (like ~$50 each). The one local place has a good selection but wants $150 for a noname PII/400/128M/4G/CD-ROM (way too much for something most people are tossing in the trash). This is COD, customer (me) pickup and only a DOA guarantee needed. I'll go to NH, VT, RI and CT if the selection is worth the trip.

There's always the MIT flea but I think they're closing down soon. Any suggestions? Thanks.


Here's my summer boating safety bitch-n-moan

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 8 years ago Ok, quick and easy:

- Everyone wears PFDs (lifejackets), not just the kids. Nothing like seeing a living kid clinging to the slightly bloated corpse of a parent (and yes, I had to fish'em both out of the water). And this was back before disposable body bags (stuff, dump, wash, dry, repeat as needed). Do you get the picture? I hope so.
- Test the straps on the PFDs. Put the lifejacket on the deck, hold it down with one foot and test pull the straps. Any ripping means they should cut and tossed.
- Toss any PFDs that are heavily faded. Heavy fading could cause a fabric breakdown.
- Any PFDs more than five years old should be cut'n tossed.
- If you frequently go on other people's boats consider getting your own PFD. Yeah, a Sterns will cost you >$100 but they're quite comfortable. IMO well worth the money.
- Keep PFDs accessable. I've seen a few times during inspections when Joe Boater couldn't find the key to unlock the locker with the jackets. Dumbass.
- No drinking for the pilot and one other, two max for everyone else. The water a mean place and a few beers could easily mean making it or not.
- Learn to swim. Maybe this should be number one. Even the most basic YMCA swim class will make a huge difference. For experienced swimmers try jumping in to a pool fully clothed, no PFD and stay afloat for an hour or two. If you can do an hour you will have greatly increase your chances of survival.
- If you think you might go offshore more than a mile get a marine radio and make sure it works. If you're in the US get a 406 MHz EPIRB. I know a guy today that has his Category II version (the one that saved his life) proudly mounted over his fireplace. An EPIRB can shorten a SAR contact time by as much as a few hours. Screw prayer, this will be your heaven sent angel.
- Check the weather. It's a stupid one but some people don't do it. What looks like just a dark day on shore could be +10' swells a mile out.
- Bring flares, lots of flares. Flares work great with FLIR which means possibly a faster trip to dry land.
- Tell two people on shore what your plans are and rough course/times. Have a firm return time and stick to it. If you can't make it in time call your friends with an update. Leaving a home voicemail can help too. Leave a copy of your plan by your home phone so someone could find it. This will help a rescue plane or cutter to do a much better and faster search.
- Everyone wears PFDs (lifejackets), not just the kids. Always remember this: no matter how good of a swimmer you are it will do you no good if you're unconscious. I'm repeating myself because it's that important.

Oh, if you need to be rescued by the USCG please follow their exact orders (as in don't jump in the water when you first see them). Chances are they'll get to you before the boat goes completely down so unless it's on fire please stay with it. Their current rescue rate is about 85% (pretty good). If you have a question you can call your local USCG station on the "non SAR number" and ask away. They're pretty cool and helpful with calls like this. USCG small boat crews are great people who volunteer to risk their lives in order to save others. Rarely are they every decorated for saving a life since it happens so offen. IMO a nobel act.

The water is a great place worthy of great respect. It also has zero respect for you. Please be careful.


Best. Comment. Ever.

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 8 years ago Or at least for today about Jerry Taylor vs. CentOS. From http://www.theregister.co.uk/2006/03/27/tuttle_email/page2.html:

"The whole debacle in Oklahoma should not come as a shock to anyone. This is exactly the sort of thing that happens when you give people in developing countries computers. If we can just manage to stay the course, we can help these poor bastards overcome the gap."

Charles Henderson


Question: Swap on flash?

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 8 years ago So I have an ARM board with 64M of DRAM, 64M on board flash and an 1G RS-MMC running Debian (quite nicely). Right now I'm running it without a swap partition and memory is getting tight. Here's the questions:

- Can I run a swap part on flash without damaging said memory?

- Could it run for years without failure or will the flash memory tank in a few weeks?

- Has anyone tried this with success or failure?

BTW, I'd add more RAM but what I have is attached to the board and there's no room for expansion.


"George Bush don't like black people"

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 9 years ago "George Bush don't like black people" (link)
The Legendary KO

George Bush doesn't care about black people (Kayne West)

I ain't saying he's a gold digger
But he ain't messing with no broke niggers

George Bush don't like black people

Hurricane came through, fucked us up 'round here
Government acting like it's bad luck down here
All I know is you better bring some trucks 'round here
Wonder why I got my middle finger up 'round here

People's lives on the line you declined in the help
Since you're taking so much time we're surviving ourselves
Just me and and my pets and my kids and my spouse
Trapped in my own house looking for a way out

Five days in this motherfucking attic
I can't use the cellphone I keep getting static
Dying 'cause they lying instead of telling us the truth
The other day the helicopters got my neighbors off the roof
( That's cool )
Screwed 'cause they say they're coming back for us, too
But that was three days ago and I don't see no rescue
See what a man's got to do what a man's got to do
Since God laid the path and I'm trying to walk through

Swam to the store, tryin' to look for food
Corner store's kinda flooded so I broke my way through
Got what I could but before I got through
News say the police shot a black man trying to loot

George Bush don't like black people



hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 9 years ago The article: Waco Man Arrested After Desecrating Memorial. This guy hooked up chains and pipes to the back of his truck and drove through a memorial of over 1k white crosses (each with the name of an US KIA). Thankfully he didn't run any people over.

While I have a problem with pushing home information, business info is different:

Northern Realtors
Larry Northern
303 Crossroads West
Waco, Texas 76712
254-751-0449 fax

Be nice but what he did was wrong.


Mike Lynn / Black Hat security conference video

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 9 years ago Found from oreilly via boing. One thing is reading about it and another to see censorship in action. I don't know whose people are doing the ripping. Story and video (quicktime mov). BTW, the video is ~5M.


A request for Nintendo to open up the GB DS

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 9 years ago (Is this possible?)

(Please note that while there is some comparisons between the Nintendo DS (DS) and the Sony Personal PlayStation (PSP) my comments should not be construed as a judgment on which unit has better games or is better for gaming. My comments and ideas are limited to the DS' ability to be expanded past it's current usage, which could possibly expand it's total customer base, and not about corporately generated games. While I mention Python as the interpreter of choice, Ruby should also be strongly considered. BTW, I know the name sucks but I'm sure someone will come up with something better.)

The "App-Yan"

I propose that Nintendo makes or allow someone else to make a device that fits into the DS game slot on the DS which allows users to run Python applications. Applications would be stored and loaded from a removable SD card.

The "App-Yan" parts:


External housing design and dimensions: the dimensions would very similar to the "Play-Yan", Nintendo's mp3/mpeg4 player that fits into the GBA slot on the DS.

SD or SDIO slot: Python scripts and/or related data files would be stored here. No propriety software should be required to copy files to and from the SD card. Open data standards should be used whenever possible. Also somewhat similar to the "Play-Yan".

>256M non removable internal flash memory: This would be used for the storage of the Python interpreter et al and, at the user's choice, Python scripts or related data.

A/D converter on the "professional" model: It's about expanding the DS and a "professional" version with multiple A/D converters would expand the DS' use, for example, for automated data collection.


Python interpreter: the Python interpreter, a signed Nintendo application, would be stored on the App-Yan's internal flash memory. It could be updated by Nintendo to address security flaws and bugs. Scripts could be run allowing for a text output or with a full GUI. GUI objects could be accessed from either the DS' internal GUI widgets or from standardized custom widgets accompanied with the interpreter.

Signed script validator: Some groups have the need to ensure their scripts arrive at the user's DS unmodified. A built in public key signature system could be used to insure scripts arrive as they were intended.

Why the DS

The DS, like previous versions of the GB, is well designed and a nearly indestructible device. They have been successfully used in environments that normally would kill off similar electronic devices. The closest example of a device that can stand up to similar abuse would possible be a "hardened" PDA (either Palm of PocketPC OS based in a custom enclosure) costing at least four times the cost of the DS/AY (DS with an "App-Yan" device). The DS' low cost, durability and touch screens make it an ideal candidate for this project over other portable devices. The use of a GB for nongaming use is hardly new. The Singer Izek sewing machine (now out of production) used a GB as a stitch and pattern controller.

What's the benefit to Nintendo?

This project would expand the current customer base and places used. Many would say the "holy grail" of a portable gaming system is to allow for its use in a public school setting. This might be possible using the "dynamically generated exams" example sited below. While the DS performs well as a portable gaming system added uses would generate additional console sales which would generate added games sales. While Nintendo is still the king of the overall handheld gaming market, the Sony PSP has presented itself as extremely strong competition. With Sony's lead in the home console market the success of the DS could be critical to Nintendo's future.

What applications do you see being created?

More than I can imagine. Python scripts have be used from embedded systems to enterprise size servers for countless applications. Here's a scratching of the surface:

Data collection for surveys. Imagine a scenario where a half dozen survey collectors need to interview people at a local mall. They need to ask a few questions and have follow up questions adapt to respondent's previous answers. The data then needs to be transferred to a single point where it is recorded, analyzed and the script possibly adjusted. In this scenario the survey collectors would use the DS' top screen to read questions and the bottom to record responses. Those answers would be wirelessly transferred to another DS where they would be collected and analyzed in real time. The collection point could also adjust the survey collector's script.

Dynamically generated static or progressive exams. A public school could use DS/AYs for class exams. A "wired" school would have a record of the MAC address of each student's DS. An instructor would send an exam to each of the student's DS. As an anti-cheating measure the exam question order would be pseudo-randomized for each student. Answers would be sent back to the instructor's DS or computer for correction. Results could be returned in real time if desired. This could also be used for overnight or "take home" exams. Besides tracking the correct answer, one could also track the amount of time taken to answer each question. Quick and correct responses might show a great proficiency than the same correct answers but answered at a slower rate.

Vertical market applications. Today many companies use PDAs or tablet PCs for their internal applications. While both offer larger screens this is sometimes not needed. The DS/AY system would be far less expensive. As many of these machines are assigned to people on an "as needed" basis they are sometimes treated rougher than devices that spend most of it's company life with one or two users. Most PDAs and tablet PCs were not designed for this kind of abuse. The DS on the other hand was designed for the use and abuse of children.

The other issue for vertical markets is application design costs. Python (and previously mentioned Ruby) have proven track records as stable RAD (rapid application development) platforms. Applications can be quickly built, tested and wirelessly deployed.

Electronic tour guides. Many museums have experimented with electronic devices as automated tour guides. While good software design has lead to successful use of such devices they have their limitations. Durability and cost per unit have restricted their widespread use. A DS console equipped with an App-Yan unit would allow institutions to quickly develop and distribute such guides. If students were equipped with DS/AY an instructor could create a custom tour guide suited for their students.

What about game piracy?

The App-Yan could only run Python scripts with a Python interpreter which would be a signed application from Nintendo. The interpreter would be able to access all parts of the DS except for the running Nintendo signed applications. Piracy IMO is a "make or break" issue for the App-Yan. If it can't be designed to protect against the unauthorized use of licensed games then I see little interest in Nintendo developing or supporting it. There must also be a social contract that programs using the App-Yan will not try to bypass copyright controls. This device is about expanding the uses of the DS, not a game backup device. One of the "sacred cows" of this project is that the App-Yan should never be able to play copies of commercial DS or GBA games. While to many this seems like a draconian move IMO it's the only way to keep a project like this alive. If it can be used to bypass Nintendo's copyright protections then IMO they will have little recourse other than to stop supporting the App-Yan.

How can you ensure against the App-Yan running game backups?

I have no idea. Someone, somewhere will somehow figure out a way around the propose ban. Software only mods have been created for most of the advanced game consoles and it would be foolish to think it couldn't be done for the App-Yan. It comes back to the social contract that would help in the slowing of the proliferation of such a program. The lifeblood of the DS is in the sale of officially licensed games and Nintendo has a responsibility to insure they protect against the illegal use of said games. Damage that revenue stream and IMO the App-Yan is dead.


Equifax's CEO calls free annual credit reports unamerican.

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 9 years ago From Credit Chief Slams Free Reports

Equifax's CEO Thomas Chapman gave the world these notable quotes while recently at the Commonwealth Club of California about the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act, which provides consumers with a free copy of their credit report every 12 months to check for inaccuracies and fraudulent activity.

"Our company felt, and still does ... that it's unconstitutional to cause a public company who has a fiduciary responsibility to return profit to shareholders to give away the product,"

"Most of my shareholder group did not think that giving away our product was the American way."

"That's like turning on the smoke alarm once a year,"

Actually you're suppose to test your smoke detectors once a month.

Equifax, Experian and TransUnion are the true "axis of evil". BTW, here's some info about the Fair Credit Reporting Act and how to get your free credit report (not like those scam sites).


Article: The party's over for betrayed Republican

hotspotbloc hotspotbloc writes  |  more than 9 years ago From The party's over for betrayed Republican:

June 26, 2005

Guest Viewpoint: The party's over for betrayed Republican

By James Chaney

As of today, after 25 years, I am no longer a Republican.

I take this step with deep regret, and with a deep sense of betrayal.

I still believe in the vast power of markets to inspire ideas, motivate solutions and eliminate waste. I still believe in international vigilance and a strong defense, because this world will always be home to people who will avidly seek to take or destroy what we have built as a nation. I still believe in the protection of individuals and businesses from the influence and expense of an over-involved government. I still believe in the hand-in-hand concepts of separation of church and state and absolute freedom to worship, in the rights of the states to govern themselves without undo federal interference, and in the host of other things that defined me as a Republican.

My problem is this: I believe in principles and ideals which my party has systematically discarded in the last 10 years.

My Republican Party was the party of Abraham Lincoln, Teddy Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower, Barry Goldwater, and George H.W. Bush. It was a party of honesty and accountability. It was a party of tolerance, and practicality and honor. It was a party that faced facts and dealt with reality, and that crafted common-sense solutions to problems based on the facts as they were, not as we wished them to be, or even worse, as we made them up. It was a party that told the truth, even when the truth came hard. And now, it is none of those things.

Fifty years from now, the Republican Party of this era will be judged by how we provided for the nation's future on three core issues: how we led the world on the environment, how we minded the business of running our country in such a way that we didn't go bankrupt, and whether we gracefully accepted our place on the world's stage as its only superpower. Sadly, we have built the foundation for dismal failure on all three counts. And we've done it in such a way that we shouldn't be surprised if neither the American people nor the world ever trusts us again.

My party has repeatedly ignored, discarded and even invented science to suit its needs, most spectacularly as to global warming. We have an opportunity and the responsibility to lead the world on this issue, but instead we've chosen greed, shortsightedness and deliberate ignorance.

We have mortgaged the country's fiscal future in a way that no Democratic Congress or administration ever did, and to justify the tax cuts that brought us here, we've simply changed the rules. I matured as a Republican believing that uncontrolled deficit spending is harmful and irresponsible; I still do. But the party has yet to explain to me why it's a good thing now, other than to say "... because we say so."

Our greatest failure, though, has been in our role as superpower. This world needs justice, democracy and compassion, and as the keystone of those things, it needs one thing above all else: truth.

Republican decisions made in 2002 and 2003 have killed almost 2,000 of the most capable patriots our country has to offer - volunteers, every one. Support for those decisions was gathered through what appeared at the time to be spin and marketing, but which now turns out to have been deliberate planning and falsehood. The Blair government's internal documentation only confirms what has been suspected for years: Americans are dying every day for Republican lies first crafted in 2002, expanded and embellished upon in 2003, and which continue to this day. This calculated deception is now burned into the legacy of the party, every bit as much as Reagan's triumph in the Cold War, or Nixon's disgrace over Watergate.

I could go on and on - about how we have compromised our international integrity by sanctioning torture, about how we are systematically dismantling the civil liberties that it took us two centuries to define and preserve, and about how we have substituted bullying, brinksmanship and "staying on message" for real political discourse - but those three issues are enough.

We're poisoning our planet through gluttony and ignorance.
We're teetering on the brink of self-inflicted insolvency.
We're selfishly and needlessly sacrificing the best of a generation.
And we're lying about it.

While it has compiled this record of failure and deception, the party which I'm leaving today has spent its time, energy and political capital trying to save Terri Schiavo, battling the threat of single-sex unions, fighting medical marijuana and physician-assisted suicide, manufacturing political crises over presidential nominees, and selling privatized Social Security to an America that isn't buying. We fiddle while Rome burns.

Enough is enough. I quit.

James Chaney is a Eugene attorney who has been in private practice for more than 20 years, and who has been a registered Republican since 1980.

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