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Chinese Lunar Probe Lands Successfully

houbou wonder if.. (250 comments)

it will find the US flag from 1969.. :)

about a year ago

Programming Molecules To Let Chemicals Make Decisions

houbou aka.. (28 comments)

a super-smart kryptonian white cell? :) lets' just make sure we stay under a yellow sun! :)

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: Application Security Non-existent, Boss Doesn't Care. What To Do?

houbou EASY (310 comments)

Document your correspondences to your boss when you notify vital security issues. Make sure your e-mails are not only backed-up, but you get read receipts or something showing your boss opened the e-mail (and might have read it). Keep those receipts archived. When poop hits the fan, at least, you are protected.

about a year ago

Spamhaus Calls for Fining Operators of Insecure Servers

houbou Prevention should be advocated instead.. (170 comments)

What would be better is an authoritative body charged with the mandate of inspecting Internet infrastructure and determining if they are vulnerable or not and provide them with solutions to fix their issues. Of course, someone has to pay for this, but still, I think it would make more sense. But that's just my opinion.

about a year ago

Company Wants To Put Power Plants In the Sky

houbou Interesting (223 comments)

Wouldn't it be more efficient if the drones were in space, away from our atmosphere? And if one can harness power in such a way that it can be wirelessly transmitted, wouldn't that also be "in the wrong hands" a weapon of some rather next level form of mass destruction?

about a year ago

Ancient Egyptians Created "Meat Mummies" So Dead Could Continue To Eat

houbou Wow.. (93 comments)

Ignorance is bliss....

about a year ago

Motorola Patent Uses Neck Tattoo As Microphone

houbou Patent.. (51 comments)

without a product is pretty useless.. I could watch the last 20 yrs worth of sci-fi and patent a crap load of ideas with theoretical concepts, but, no implementation means nothing.

about a year ago

You're Only As Hirable As Your Google+ Circles

houbou Guess what? (195 comments)

I won't be working for Google anytime soon! :)

about a year ago

Google: Our Robot Cars Are Better Drivers Than You

houbou Agreed, Robot Drivers are better, but.. (722 comments)

the problem isn't that I wouldn't trust a Robot Driver, but, how can you be sure it won't get hacked? or malfunction? Some things should always be left to be in control by a human. Intuition isn't something a robot can acquire.

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: Developer Responsibility When Apps Might Risk Lives?

houbou Depends. (100 comments)

If the developer is the owner of the software and has provided warranty for the software and/or as a selling points, uses the accuracy and reliability of the software and, assuming this, that the users of the product are following all the rules and guidelines and the software fails.. then, there could be a point towards this. So, this becomes a question of what are you selling, how much are you willing to back it up and finally, if there are any disclaimers, are they easily understood? Nothing is infallible. Considering the platforms being used, etc.. It's hard to make anything fool proof, so, how much QA was done? and are people using the product as it is intended on the devices it is meant to work on? And let's talk a professional software with proper SDLC. That means there is QA, UAT, PROD, etc.. It's not just the developer. So, this can easily be a grayish area.

about a year ago

Book Review: The Practice of Network Security Monitoring

houbou How did you post a book review? (15 comments)

There is allegedly a link to post book reviews.. and I can't find it and can't get anything useful in Google. The FAQ page refers to it, but that's it, so, how does one post a book review?

about a year ago

Not a Whiff of Life on Mars

houbou The only way.. (1 comments)

.. we can know if there was life on Mars, is to explore the planet using actual humans with the proper tools. And then again, for the most part, while wanting to know if there "WAS" life on the planet is something that we would really like to know, the more pertinent question is "can we somehow make it habitable for us?" What is on the planet which could help us make it viable? Obviously, in science fiction there is a concept of "terraforming" which we do NOT actually have the technology for, but in the end, it comes down to this: Is there something we can use for fuel? is there energy to be worked with? is there raw matter we can manipulate? Is there water? Can we build radiation proof shelters? You know, those sort of questions...

about a year ago

Conflict minerals and cell phones

houbou Not surprised. (1 comments)

Much about this world isn't fair. But the saying is "ignorance is bliss".
However, it is NOT sustainable to plead ignorance and to be complacent about such issues.
Considering the amount of technology, especially in the communication field it isn't possible for this type of information to remain hidden.
Which means that for those of us living well, we must shoulder this responsibility.
In a nutshell, common sense dictates that we should spread our standards of living everywhere and that somewhere along the way, we should recognize that the current economic models make no sense, the way the planet is government in such a fragmented manner is utter chaos and we really need as humans to come to grip with the stupid and irrelevant issues of racism and beliefs and we should work together as one.

about a year ago

Emotional Attachment To Robots Could Affect Battlefield Outcome

houbou Re:Seriously.. (194 comments)

I just think that robots will more than likely be treated like a house, a car, a boat for that matter. It's a proprietary ownership type of feeling, we call all of these things "she".. for your car, "she's a beauty, she can go 0 to 60 in 3 seconds.. " you know.. I mean.. the bottom line is that I would find it hard to believe that IN combat, there would be "emotional' attachment to a robot. More than anything else, fear that it broke and/or someone stole it, etc.. What if you have a douche bag commanding officer put the fear of god in you if the robot doesn't come back intact, etc.. I don't know.. I just think that you are fighting for your life, you can't be emotionally attached to a thing, you just use the thing.

about a year ago

Emotional Attachment To Robots Could Affect Battlefield Outcome

houbou Seriously.. (194 comments)

A dog is a pet, it has emotions among other characteristics that it shares with humans and as such a dog's loyalty is akin to love of its owner and vice-versa. But a robot? It is just a thing. Now, I don't think it's an 'emotional' bond between robot and human, but just a proprietary reaction of valuing the robot as a possession. It's like people and their cell phones, which they will even sleep with. It's not the love of the cell phone, it's just the dependency of having it for use whenever they see fit.

about a year ago

BlackBerry Reportedly Prepping To Slash Workforce By 40 Percent

houbou Too bad (89 comments)

I used to love my BlackBerry.. I bet they would have wished to have been bought by Microsoft instead.

about a year ago

Stack Overflow turns 5

houbou Stack Overflow = life saver (1 comments)

First line of defense when you need to figure out some technical programming issue.

about a year ago

NSA Chief Built Star Trek Like Command Center

houbou Here's the question.. (372 comments)

Is it worth it? Does the ROI actually make everybody more productive?

about a year ago



PacktPub delivers again when it comes to ExtJS!

houbou houbou writes  |  about a year ago

houbou (1097327) writes "The latest version is Mastering ExtJS, which covers version 4.2, truly, at the moment of writing this, a great read, since this is as current as it can get!

A few years back I purchased Learning ExtJS and it was a book worthy of my shelf space. Back then, ExtJS was at version 2.x and the API documentation was fairly decent, but there wasn't much info on putting all of what ExtJS could do into some semblance and perspective.

The great thing about Mastering ExtJS is that it will get you up to speed with a truly practical project, which touches every major aspect of ExtJS 4.2.
  • Title: Mastering ExtJS 4.2
  • Author: Loiane Groner
  • Pages: 358
  • Publisher: PACKT Publishing
  • Rating: 9/10
  • Reviewer: Houbou
  • ISBN: 978-1-78216-400-5
  • Summary: Get up and running with ExtJS using real-world techniques

The book is divided into 12 chapters. Chapter 1) Getting Started will get you ready to build your app and understand the book's project using graphics and excellent mockups. Best of all, all you need is a WAMP/LAMP stack and you are ready to go!

Do you need to know much? Not at all, no real pre-requisites to anything really. And that's really amazing and you can divide the credits for this accomplishment between the author who wrote this manual and the fact that ExtJS is a complete full solution, which when approached correctly, allows you to build an app without any real knowledge of anything beyond using a computer and typing text.

Of course, this is all about Mastering ExtJS, not web development, so, do not expect to deal with topics such as performance optimization for example, those advanced topics are beyond the scope of the material presented.

The project is build in a logical way, so, Chapter 2) would deal with a Login page for your app, while Chapter 3) would deal with Login Out and having a multilingual project. Again, all very well-thought of, you are dealing with a project which is based on sound and solid web application architectural concepts.

Now, to be fair, you aren't just building an ExtJS app, this book teaches you the correct approach, which is by using the sencha tools and by ensuring the use of Sencha's MVCS (Model, View, Controller, Store) paradigm. This is peppered throughout the chapters.

Throught the rest of the book, when appropriate, it's not just about writing ExtJS code, but integrating it with the back-end support which in our case is a combination of MySQL and PHP. Again, no need to know these products as Mastering ExtJS provides you with everything you need as well as a good summary of how these technologies are integrating with the project.

Chapter 4 talks about dynamic menus, so, yes, it deals with using the DB to populate your menus at runtime.

Chapter 5 makes you build a user identification and security management tools. so you get to play with complex layouts using grids, tab layout, again all working of your back-end support.

Chapter 6 deals with MySQL table management, so, in this aspect, if databases aren't your strength, you should enjoy the simplicity and the real-world knowledge you will gain from this chapter as you get to implement these topics with ExtJS.

Chapter 7 is about Content Management, again, real world topics which uses more grids with pagination and other widgets, which are data driven.

Chapter 8 goes beyond the usual fanfare that ExtJS provides with topics such as exporting your grid to Excel and PDF, creating charts and also exporting them to PDF and/or images.

Chapter 9 provides the application with E-Mail management capabilities, what's interesting is that this project uses more than 1 controller and you get to understand more about Sencha's MVCS as well working with some nifty drag and drop features.

Chapter 10 is all about going to production, so the topics such as deploying your app, customizing a theme, working with the Sencha tools, and even working with Sencha's Desktop Packager, should you want to go to the actual Desktop!

Chapter 11, for those who are WordPress users, well, you can integrate your WordPress with ExtJS by building a WordPress theme.

Chapter 12, to me, is a subject which is very dear which is Debugging and Testing your app, and yes, we are talking about Siesta testing. As an added bonus, there is some relevant information about ExtJS and mobile web app development, where you get to read about Sencha Touch and the similarities in the API between the 2 frameworks.

Overall, this book is amazing, it is actually one of those rare books which is available in a time where the information is fresh and relevant. You need to get tame that ExtJS Beast? You need to know what it can do? Then Mastering ExtJS is the book for you!"


book review: Mastering ExtJS 4 - Publisher PacktPub - Author: Loaine Groaner

houbou houbou writes  |  about a year and a half ago

houbou (1097327) writes "In a nutshell, if you don't know ExtJS 4 (book uses version 4.2) and you need to get something done, this is definitively the manual you want to use to get you up to speed.

I recall many years ago buying Learning ExtJS, which was a gold mine of important info.

What I liked most about it was that it provided much needed context to ExtJS and its API.

It is nice to see that this latest version is equally agreeable and just as useful.

The book is basically based on a project which will use not only ExtJS, but a LAMP/WAMP Stack for the building of a CRUD app.

In this regard, this means that you must go through the book in order to learn the various features of ExtJS.

But this works out pretty well as the project's goals are clear and provide you with an excellent overview of what ExtJS is capable of, such as: layouts, widgets, form validation, multilingual support, styling, grid export to PDF and Excel, and much more.

If you need to get a single web page application out in a hurry and you want to know what ExtJS can do, or if you simply just want to understand ExtJS by learning with a well rounded project, this book is a must. Considering that it is based on ExtJS 4.2, is simply a bonus!"



Apple's threats of a lawsuit over BC School Logo

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Ok, I think Apple is truly and I mean, TRULY overstepping their bounds. A BC School is being threatened of getting sued by Apple, because their logo is an apple. Well, it's an apple yes, but it also has a mountain in it and it's blue and green and well, really, when push comes to shove, it's nothing like the Apple logo. It's not even bitten, like the Official Apple logo.

You can see the logo and read more about this in the following links:

What I'm afraid of is the precedent this can set, should a lawsuit be filed and should Apple (the company) win. This would mean that every one who somehow is related to the apple industry (the fruit), can get sued if they use an apple logo.

For example, there is a medical group in Ottawa, called the Appletree Medical Group. They use an apple as their logo. Will they get sued too?

In a perverted way, I truly hope Apple (the company) brings this issue to a trial and that Apple (the company) loses and gets punitive damages of such cost that it will make their stockholders have nightmares for the next 10 yrs.


New Debit Card Scam caught on video!

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Footage of a new type of debit card scam has been caught on video on Sept. 11th. The key is to distract a clerk in a store, while someone else switches the store's business PIN pad with a dummy one.

  1. Distract Clerk
  2. Replace Business PIN Pad with a phoney one
  3. Take the stolen Pad and rejig it with a transmitter and technology which will allow them to receive info while the Pad is active and in use.
  4. Take it back to the store it comes from originally and return it covertly so that it can now be used by unsuspecting customers and staff alike.

In this video, there are 4 suspects working this scam.

Read more from this article "New debit scam caught on video" from the Calgary Sun.


Group XP hack and post Bill Haher on Shiite Cleric Website!

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago

From CNN: "Web site of influential Shiite cleric hacked"

  • Group placed video of Bill Maher making fun of cleric on site
  • Some think video was meant to show cleric's fatwas invoke mockery
  • Group said it was hacking sites that gave a "bad name" to Sunnis


New I/O Device: Your Tongue!

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago It already allows you to taste, speak, kiss and more... Now the tongue could become a computer control pad! For those who suffer from disabilities, this could truly be a boon in easy the way they use a computer. Read more on this topic from this link: 'Tongue computing' could help disabled.


Google Browser (Chrome) - Initial FeedBack

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Having just installed the Google Browser, I have to say I'm impressed.

Whatever websites I've coded following standards, did not break. The pages were actually loading really fast and I mean not only loading, but displaying and refreshing. I think they *Google* may be on to something.

Not all was perfect however, as I went to Pogo.com where I play many of my online games and at first, I couldn't get the Java applet running, so I had to install Java, the one recommended by Pogo.com didn't work and then, as I search the help within Chrome (which was actually very easy to use and comprehensive, I have to say), I read and followed their instructions on which version of Java to use and install, but I still couldn't get the games from Pogo.com to play on Chrome. It just wasn't compatible, but, you know, it's a beta version, day 1, we shouldn't expect miracles.

Of course, if someone has been able to get their Pogo games to work, let me know how you did it! :)

But once they get their act together on that level of compatibility, I suspect this new browser will give both Microsoft and Firefox some rather stiff competition.

I'm going to have to read more on it, especially in terms of security when it comes to online banking, but if this browser is indeed going to be secure, Google Chrome may become my favorite browser to work with!

I can't wait to see a formal release, not a Beta!


Nintendo says cheating is normal

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago

I have a Nintendo DS and I love the game Mario Kart DS. I'm a fanatic. But in the last few months, playing online via the internet has become a pain in the butt!

There are people who are playing with Hacked versions of their DS/Mario Kart.

They give themselves unlimited powers, and well, to make matters worse, if you quit the game, your get penalized, as your "losses" section increases.

So, I sent an e-mail to Nintendo, informing them about this and I even proposed a way of detecting these hacked versions.

My initial e-mail to Nintendo is the following:

I'm sure when your company designed the Nintendo DS and made it available for Wi-Fi play, it never thought that system could be hacked. Yet, when for quite a while now, a lot of hacked versions of Mario Kart are connecting through your network and basically making the game play miserable and discouraging. With their unlimited powers and ability to speed up their karts, it's hard to play.

Why aren't you doing anything about this? Seriously, I mean, by now, what is Nintendo's position on this? Let me offer a suggestion, since it seems your company, so far, as yet done anything tangible about this problem.

1) Obviously, a hacked version of Mario Kart, might not be recognizable at connection time.

2) But once connected to your network, you can monitor game play for any/all games.

3) Shouldn't be rocket science to determine which karts are cheating at that point... After all, when someone can fire up 5 lightning bolts in a row, or their karts are speeding at 10 times the normal speed of all karts, without any power ups..

4) Also, they seem to be able to reset their winning/losing game numbers, so you could in theory log every user the amount of times they have logged and play games and won/loss. I know it's a pain to keep in your servers, but based on that, you can then easily figure out who is tinkering with their systems.

5) That should allow you to identify them and locked them out of your system the next time they try to log on.

Now, how's that for a solution? See, you can eliminate these party-poopers in the long run, after all, i'm pretty sure they are anyways voiding their rights to access your network by hacking into their games.

I can honestly say that my game losses are not reflective of the games I've played, because everytime I play against these cheaters, I reboot my Nintendo and I'm penalized with game losses.


Do something, we pay you a crap load of money for our fun, you could at least pay and show some interest in the integrity of your games.

This is Nintendo's response


Sadly, cheating in games (even board or card games) is an unfortunate fact of life. We do respect the fact that you, and many others, do their best to enjoy gaming without cheating. At Nintendo, we do our best to make sure that our fans are able to have a fun gaming experience.

One way we have been able to accomplish this is through the Friend Code feature. We introduced the Friend Code feature as a way of allowing gamers to build their own personal online gaming community by choosing to play only with those they know and trust. This way, players are able to create an arena where they can enjoy a fair gaming experience.

Rest assured that your comments about this very important issue have been shared with the appropriate departments within Nintendo for review.


Chelsea MacAran

Nintendo of America Inc.

Nintendo's home page: http://www.nintendo.com/Power Line (Automated Product Info): (425) 885-7529

This is my reply back

The problem with Friend Code is that it is only good if you know the person and can interact with them outside of the network. (in person, by phone, etc...), in order to add them to your DS.

I play online and can't for the heck of me know who I am playing with.

So, unless I'm mistaken, I've not seen a way to add anyone as a friend just from playing Wi-Fi online via the web.

But, quite frankly, to tell me that cheating is part of gaming, that is truly astonishing and most unprofessional.

We are talking ONLINE games here.

People are HACKING their DS/Mario Kart cartridge and then accessing your network. How can you you justify tolerating that?

Worse is, I know you can monitor network traffic, I'm a web developer/programmer, I'm not stupid.

There are ways of recognize legitimate users from hacked users.

If you sit by and do nothing, then you are encouraging it, and that means that I'm not looking forward to any of your future products, because you don't care about the integrity of the game.

Here is one way to figure out a hacked version from a legitimate and it's so easy.

Online Play with Mario Kart, we get to choose 16 tracks, not 32 tracks.

Hacked version are able to access all 32 tracks and we know that because they come up with proposed race tracks to play which we legitimate users can't access.

So, that's a clue right there.

There are many other clues.

How can anyone invoke the lightning bolt attack strategy "at will"?

How can anyone have access the server several times to play games and yet always have "0 wins and 0 losses" or better yet.. 1000000 wins. I mean, me, when I quit because of a cheater, I'm penalized in my losses.

How can they invoke unlimited Star Power or any other of the power-ups.

You control the network, so you have the ability to see this.

You also know their machine ids and their mario kart ids. I think it is feasible to block them from future access once they have been found out.

By monitoring the traffic and recognizing these losers, you can weed them out over time.

If I knew that was a process which was taking place, at least, I wouldn't be as irated, I would know that you the company is trying to do something for us, the legitimate users.

If you aren't doing anything about it, it's truly not because you can't, but because you won't.

And that means that in the long run, I, like many others, will look to play on other platforms.

Because what you DON'T realize, is that the time we put NOT playing the game (i.e. connecting to cheaters, having to try and guess who cheats and doesn't before you commit to the game, etc...) Well, it's not worth it.

So, when you say, cheating is normal, you obviously don't think much about the effects of this.

If in 1 hr of time, I play 10 minutes of good game and the rest is all about avoiding the cheaters, then this is not good for me. And that means that it's not good for you, because my money in buying your games is what makes your company run.

These cheaters are wasting our valuable playing time, and I'm telling you, that if Nintendo doesn't propose a solution for this very soon, I will boycott your products.

Between me and my g/f, we have 4 kids and they all want DS(s) and Wii(s) for christmas, We will not buy it, we will get them a console or handheld from another platform. No point getting them to waste their time as I have been.

If we get fed up of this, we are not going to purchase anything else, and you get to lose.

And I will bring this up to any one who will listen, any and every darn gaming board, hi-tech board, etc...

In fact, your letter will go in Slashdot.org, as a starter with my response.

Don't tell me cheating is normal.

Tell me instead the strategy to be used to avoid them and how you plan on resolving this issue.

That's what I want to hear.

No response for this yet from Nintendo

It will be interesting to see where this leads to.


Java where to start?

houbou houbou writes  |  more than 6 years ago

I'm a web developer who has design and programming experience. So, VB, ASP, PHP, Coldfusion, Perl, even C and C++ I have in my belt. I also use Dreamweaver and/or do a lot of my HTML/XHTML/JavaScript coding by hand. So, the DOM, DHTML, etc... all good to me and even OOP thinking and design I have when I code. And I even have MySQL and other databases, again, not an issue here.

So, my weak point is.. Java... I see so many jobs out there with J2EE, Hibernate, Eclipse, Netbeans and all that uh.. java.. :) But beside the obvious, which is to learn Java the core language, I don't know where else to go from there.

There is so much!

So, I humbly ask the knowledgeable and competent readers of Slashdot for help..

What should I read? in what order? what are the software I require? UML? Swing? I mean, what is the curriculum required for someone to say they are a solid Java developer? Database? etc... Where to start? even assuming I have to go through Java itself, what are the good books out there?


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