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Comments

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Snowden to Critics: Questioning Putin Has Opened Conversation About Surveillance

iluvcapra Re:Dumbass (168 comments)

If you have a better idea, feel free to go to Russia and try out your idea.

Basically his column is "I asked Putin this question because in the USA... (a few thousand words about how the USA spies on its citizens)."

It's not about Russia at all. And if Snowden were brave, he'd stand trial, instead of playing Putin's stool pigeon. Just think of it, Putin feeds and protects the most powerful voice for Internet freedom ever known, and can drop a dime on him at a moments notice.

2 days ago
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How Apple's CarPlay Could Shore Up the Car Stereo Industry

iluvcapra Re:The Real Breakthrough - non auto-maker Maps (194 comments)

Just throwing out this contrary case:

How well do the maps work when you don't have cell coverage in most cars? Just fine.

How well do the maps work when you don't have cell coverage with Apple? Not really at all.

about a week ago
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How Apple's CarPlay Could Shore Up the Car Stereo Industry

iluvcapra Re:Wouldn't trust Apple (194 comments)

Okay here we go

I have the following:
$600,000 loft (and appropriate decor/rooftop pool)
BMW 328i
84 IMDb credits, and my crew has won three Oscars
2 dogs
2 iPhones
1 Macbook Air
2 MacPros
(I also have a MacBook running ubuntu)

I am uncertain of the future of tech without Apple products.
I just don't 'get' the obnoxious contrarianism of Android products. Or their enormous screens, or their uniformly poor OS upgrade and hardware support, or Google's completely obscure roadmap for Android.

The thing Apple is selling you, beside the hardware, is the complete integrated product. They take your money, they give you something that works, that's their sole "monetization" strategy. Unlike everyone else in the business, trying to suck you into their various creepy ad/clickstream/search front-running scams.

I won't even go into the Google tracking everything you do to, you know, "help" you.

This isn't the 1990s, competitive Apple products are always competitively priced. It's the feature packages on Apple kit that people get upset about.

about a week ago
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How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion?

iluvcapra Re:Pedantic Man to the rescue! (582 comments)

My point is that we cannot say something is (or has been) compromised unless we have concrete evidence of the compromise in hand. We can't just say, in the abstract, "everything's compromised" simply on the basis of the assumption that all software is fatally flawed.

about a week ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

iluvcapra Re:Lobbying aside (420 comments)

See, you're the sucker reading those government propaganda numbers. Everybody knows that "real corrected shadowstats" inflation has been running 20% a year since 2008. STOP OBUMMER'S DEBASEMENT! rON pAUL 20FREVVER!!!!

about a week ago
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How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion?

iluvcapra Re:Pedantic Man to the rescue! (582 comments)

there are probably many unnoticed security holes in just about every OS and commonly used library

Yeah that's the distinction. The point is that we noticed, and this *single* security hole has an enormous reach.

about a week ago
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How Does Heartbleed Alter the 'Open Source Is Safer' Discussion?

iluvcapra Re:Mr Fixit (582 comments)

That it reacts fast is good. That the bug could be audited in the source, in public, is good.

We should remember that FLOSS reacted very quickly to the "revelation," but the bug itself has been sitting there for years, which isn't really supposed to happen.

It's nice we know how long it's been there, and can have all kinds of philosophical discussions about why the OpenSSL folks decided to write their own malloc.

Also OpenSSL was effectively a monoculture and just about every SSL-encrypted internet communication over the last two years has been compromised. OpenSSL has no competition at its core competency, so the team really has no motivation to deliver an iteratively better product, apart from their need to scratch an itch. FLOSS software projects tend not to operate in a competitive environment, where multiple OSS products are useful for the same thing and vie for placement. This is probably bad.

about a week ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

iluvcapra Re:Lobbying aside (420 comments)

his point was that people need to see what they're giving to the government

People "see" it already, on their paystubs and on their 1040s.

What he wants is for tax collection -- not taxes themselves, just the way they're collected -- to be intentionally disruptive, so that people will attempt to lower rates and revenues not because they are high, per se, but just because the way they're collected causes economic harm.

about a week ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

iluvcapra Re:Lobbying aside (420 comments)

No, you'd just have a bunch of big banks getting into tax financing, offering modest loans at reasonable interest rates(see fine print) to help people who didn't save for their bill.

The withholding system works because it causes the least economic distortion -- the more a tax "hurts," the more adverse an effect it has on day-to-day economic decisions, the more it's liable to cause people to make bad economic decisions, like saving huge lump sums in the bank instead of investing or consumption. A tax "hurting" might be good politics (for some people), but if it causes people to have irregular cash flow or makes it significantly harder for them to make planning decisions it will hurt economic growth.

about a week ago
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Intuit, Maker of Turbotax, Lobbies Against Simplified Tax Filings

iluvcapra Re:Get rid of income Tax (420 comments)

If you want to talk overall economic health, taxation does not really impact it since all those tax dollars just go strait back into the economy anyway.

Ehhhhhhhh.. it's not that simple. The government can allocate wealth well or badly, it can waste a significant amount of money by overpaying, by giving a supplier more than the least they would be willing to accept -- classic economic rent. Suppliers win premium prices through lobbying.

It cuts both easy though, lobbying can cause the government to waste money, or cause the government to force everyone else to waste money, just as Intuit has basically carved out an entire industry for itself as the IRS's middleman, while if the IRS were to simply pre-fill people's returns itself most people would save a little bundle every year on tax prep.

about a week ago
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GM Names Names, Suspends Two Engineers Over Ignition-Switch Safety

iluvcapra Re:Gak (236 comments)

Why don't you save it for your boss, smartass. Elon Musk is making you guys look like morons.

about two weeks ago
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GM Names Names, Suspends Two Engineers Over Ignition-Switch Safety

iluvcapra Re:Gak (236 comments)

Ironically, NASA has almost certainly killed more people with the space shuttle than have died due to ignition switches.

I haven't the slightest idea why they're going to NASA of all places for an engineering audit, whenever there's a shuttle accident it's always transpired that NASA has intractable compliance and engineering culture problems, and lack the capacity to properly validate a tricycle for safety, let alone a mass-produced motor vehicle. Their incompetence has literally cost the US a manned spaceflight program.

They may be taking a page from Jack in the Box, when JITB hired NASA to completely overhaul their procedures after the salmonella deaths. Given NASA's record it's a miracle JITB burgers didn't all subsequently carry Ebola.

about two weeks ago
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Double Take: Condoleezza Rice As Dropbox's Newest Board Member

iluvcapra Oh why not? (313 comments)

She was the provost of Stanford University, she's got a huge rolodex in government and SillyCon Valley. She's also obviously got a big background in IR and particularly working with Russia and Africa, which are both huge growth markets for Internet companies.

Her biggest crime was not asking all the right questions, and didn't have to swag necessary to challenge Cheney or Rumsfeld, not that she was particularly motivated. She's proven to be a pretty bad administrator and manager, but she's going on the Board, not into management.

about two weeks ago
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Can the ObamaCare Enrollment Numbers Be Believed?

iluvcapra Re:7.1 million is pathetically low, so ya I believ (722 comments)

7.1 million sign ups out of over 300 million people for a "mandatory" participation program is truly pathetic regardless whether it is above or below what was expected.

Are you sure that's the right comparison? There are over 300 million people in the US, but you only have to apply for "Obamacare" if you don't have employer-provided health care, you aren't covered by your parents, you aren't qualified to draw on Medicare or Medicaid, and your obligation is waived for religious or moral reasons. This remainder only comes out to about 20-30 million.

about two weeks ago
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Tesla Model S Has Hidden Ethernet Port, User Runs Firefox On the 17" Screen

iluvcapra Re:Should void warranty (208 comments)

Bullshit. Tesla has stated that the computer that controls the 17" and panel LCDs are completely separated from the important stuff in the car.

Hrm. The Tesla touchscreen give your instrumentation and feedback on powerplant performance, and it allows you to control the headlamps, doors, regenerative braking and hydraulics. I'm not clear on what kind of "complete separation" were talking about. If an attacker got into the touchscreen they probably wouldn't be able to brick the whole car, but if you lost the touchscreen while moving on the road you could be in a lot of trouble.

about three weeks ago
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Tesla Model S Has Hidden Ethernet Port, User Runs Firefox On the 17" Screen

iluvcapra Re:touch screens in cars, bad idea? (208 comments)

Hate to tell you, but touch screens have been a staple for fighter jets for a few days now,

Hate to tell you, but fighter pilots are trained professionals who spend years learning how to use their equipment in an efficient way that doesn't interfere with their flying of the plane.

Also, the obvious complexity of flying a supersonic $10e9 machine designed to blow stuff up notwithstanding, the problem domain of flying a fighter jet does not involve such things as traffic and obstacles, which is why we've had automatic pilots 60 years ago, but we're only barely beginning to have auto-driving cars.

about three weeks ago
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60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

iluvcapra Re:Lies (544 comments)

I bet you're one of those people that doesn't like how computers constantly beep in movies too :) I personally created all the computer beeps for 2012 and White House Down. This is just an issue of convention, tires squeal in proportion to the hurry the characters are in.

It sticks out nearly as much as the Wilhelm scream.

I'm known as an anti-Wilhelm person, the guys from Lucasfilm love it, they still think it's an inside joke or something -- Lucasfilm maintains its sterling reputation for being 1986's state-of-the-art in all things. I think it's obnoxious, however I'm presently working on 22 Jump Street and the director's themselves personally requested I use it in one scene. Yuck.

about three weeks ago
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60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

iluvcapra Re:Lies (544 comments)

I do watch everything I work on before I start adding stuff. I'm not some monkey playing see-a-car, cut-a-car; I really just can't imagine the level of desultory idiocy on display here.

about three weeks ago
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Why Darmok Is a Good Star Trek: TNG Episode

iluvcapra Re:Can I vote for.. (512 comments)

Very controversial opinion, FBTS plays a lot like a Moonlighting episode. Then again, my favorite episode is It's Only a Paper Moon (of course allowing the transcendent brilliance of In the Pale Moonlight).

about three weeks ago
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60 Minutes Dubbed Engines Noise Over Tesla Model S

iluvcapra Re:Lies (544 comments)

Well, if the name of the project was "PRESENTING THE NEW TESLA!"...

about three weeks ago

Submissions

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Most Citizens of the Star Wars Galaxy are Functionally Illiterate

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  about a year and a half ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "Ryan Britt at Tor.com makes a bit of analysis that I think we'd have some fun with, in agreement or otherwise:

Not once in any Star Wars movie does someone pick up a book or newspaper, magazine, literary journal, or chapbook handmade by an aspiring Jawa poet. [...]As early as the 1990s-era expanded Star Wars books and comic books, we’re introduced to ancient Jedi “texts” called holocrons, which are basically talking holographic video recordings. Just how long has the Star Wars universe been reliant on fancy technology to transfer information as opposed to the written word? Is it possible that a good number of people in Star Wars are completely illiterate?

Read the whole thing,"
Link to Original Source

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Google Allows Carriers to Ban Tethering Apps

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 2 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "Google, in its continuing struggle to provide phone carriers (if not its end users) with an open platform, is now banning tethering apps from the Android market. These apps haven't disappeared and can still be sideloaded, insofar as your carrier doesn't lock this functionality or snoop on your packets."
Link to Original Source
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Google, Handset Vendors at Odds over Openness

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  about 3 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "It would appear that now that Android has achieved a commanding share of the smartphone market, openness for the sake of openness is no longer a driving priority. Ashley Vance and Peter Burroughs report for Bloomberg on the latest phase of Google's consolidation of the Android platform:

Over the last couple of months Google has reached out to the major carriers and device makers backing its mobile operating system with a message: There will be no more willy-nilly tweaks to the software. No more partnerships formed outside of Google's purview. From now on, companies hoping to receive early access to Google's most up-to-date software will need approval of their plans. And they will seek that approval from Andy Rubin, the head of Google's Android group.

"

Link to Original Source
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Google Delaying Release of Honeycomb Source

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  about 3 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "BusinessWeek reports that Google will not be releasing the source code for Android Honeycomb "for the forseeable future." Android lead Andy Rubin is quoted, stating that if Google were to release the source for Honeycomb, Google would be unable to prevent it from being installed on mobile phones and "and creating a really bad user experience.""
Link to Original Source
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Apple/Verizon in Talks for iPhone-Like Devices

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 4 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "For those of you waiting vainly to get an iPhone that works with Verizon's service in the US (you know who you are, we won't make you admit it here), there comes this interesting story in BusinessWeek

Verizon Wireless is warming to the idea of an Apple (AAPL) partnership. Verizon Wireless is in talks with Apple to distribute two new iPhone-like devices, BusinessWeek has learned. Apple has created prototypes of the devices, and discussions reaching back a half-year have involved Apple CEO Steve Jobs, according to two people familiar with the matter.

One device is a smaller, less expensive calling device described by a person who has seen it as an "iPhone lite." The other is a media pad that would let users listen to music, view photos, and watch high-definition videos, the person says. It would place calls over a Wi-Fi connection.

"

Link to Original Source
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Audit the Stimulus at Home with RSS

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 5 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "In a remarkable provision of Peter Orzag's instructions for implementing the American Recovery and Re-Investment Act, the Office of Management and Budget has instructed all government units responsible for disbursing stimulus money to provide its weekly reports, communications and block grant information on an RSS feed. From the memo(PDF):

For each of the near term reporting requirements (major communications, formula block grant allocations, weekly reports) agencies are required to provide a feed (preferred: Atom 1.0, acceptable: RSS) of the information so that content can be delivered via subscription. Note that the required information can be supplied in the feed or the feed can point to a file at the agency using the convention noted below. If an agency is immediately unable to publish feeds, the agency should post each near term information flow (major communications, formula block grant allocations, weekly reports) to a URL directory convention suggested below: ...

"

Link to Original Source
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Apple Open-Sources Leopard Garbage Collector

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 5 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "Apple has open-sourced AutoZone, the garbage collector used in Mac OS X Leopard's Objective-C runtime, under the Apache v2 License. Despite its current use case in Objective-C, the engine itself is implemented in C and C++ and is described as "a fairly generic scanning, conservative, generational, multi-threaded, language agnostic, collector.""
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iPhone SDK Announced, Exchange, OpenGL Supported

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 6 years ago

iluvcapra writes "Apple has just wrapped up their iPhone development roadmap and here are the features to be presented with version 2.0, due in June: Push email and contacts, ActiveSync supporting Exchange, remote wipe. Several video games were demoed using the iPhone accelerometer and OpenGL on the iPhone, such as Spore and Super Monkeyball. SDK with development in Xcode was announced, performance suite and remote debugging of iPhone apps over the sync cable. Apple will sell apps through an iTunes-style store, that will work OTA from the iPhone or with the host computer. They will exercise control over which apps are vended over the system, and will split the sales on the system 70/30 with the developer (dev gets 70%)."
Link to Original Source
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NORAD's Santa Tracking Goes Web 2.0

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 6 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "NORAD Tracks Santa 2007, NORAD's perennial mission of tracking the progress of Santa's sleigh as he makes his yearly sortie, has gone Web 2.0 this year, including a Google Maps mashup showing Santa's current position on Earth (at time of submission, Keetmanshoop, Namibia), a KML link to let you track Santa on Google Earth, and plots and keyhole imagery on youtube.

My only question: When Santa crosses into the ADIZ, what does he set his squawk to?"

Link to Original Source
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US Democrats Accidently Publish Whistleblowers

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 6 years ago

iluvcapra writes "The US House Judiciary Committee recently emailed all of its potential whistleblowers information about how it was restructuring its whistleblower program. Unfortunately for its sources, it emailed them this information with their addresses in the "To:" field (and not the Bcc: field). It also cc:'d this email to the Vice President.

I'd like to think think this is some sort of ingenious subterfuge, but I'm doubtful."

Link to Original Source
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9th Circuit Very Skeptical of NSA Surveillance

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 6 years ago

iluvcapra (782887) writes "Yesterday before a three-judge panel of the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals, the US government argued that two class action lawsuits against the government and AT&T should be dismissed, because to litigate them in open court would cause the revelation of state secrets. The lawsuits allege that the government has installed a vast system of electronic surveillance gear at internet gateways along the US west coast to monitor all internet traffic, and that this information is monitored without a warrant, even when both endpoints are domestic. The panel was extremely skeptical of the governments argument:

"Is it the government's position that when the country is engaged in a war, that the power of the executive when it comes to wiretapping is unchecked?" asked 83-year-old Judge Harry Pregerson, one of the court's staunchest liberals, of a Bush administration lawyer. "The king can do no wrong, is that what it comes down to?"


The government was unwilling to even provide a sworn affadavit that the eavesdropping was only of foreign correspondence. If the 9th Circuit allows the lawsuits to proceed, the government will appeal to the US Supreme Court."

Link to Original Source
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Google Cookies to Expire After 2 Years, was 30

iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 6 years ago

iluvcapra writes "Google has announced that the cookies set on clients visiting its websites will be set to expire after 2 years, instead of the previous value of 30 years. It seems like a big difference, but does it really matter if you go to google 5 times a day?"
Link to Original Source
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iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 6 years ago

iluvcapra writes "I recently came into the possession of about a hundred paper handwritten pages with tabular data, which I'd like to get into some kind of computer format (tab-delimited or XML would be fantastic, but any open database format would be good too. OCR wouldn't work, the handwriting is a little too fiddly, and I don't think I could hack a program that would properly interpret.

I'd rather not type the data in myself, I'd be happy to pay someone to do it. Is anyone aware of services on the web or in general that would take my stuff as a PDF and send me back a text file? I know there are services out there, but they seem to be oriented toward bulk and repeat business, and I'm really just looking for a one-time deal, and particularly I was looking for a reference and a story about how it all worked out."
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iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 7 years ago

iluvcapra writes "Cocotron today released their MIT-licensed re-implementation of the Mac OS X Foundation and AppKit frameworks, which together form the dynamic libraries and resources that form the Cocoa environment on Mac OS X. In simple terms, this means a developer can write a program in Objective-C on Mac OS X with Xcode, and as long as he uses Cocoa widgets and objects, he can cross-compile a Windows version of his application; a bit like WINE in reverse. Here is a screenshot of TextEdit running on OS X beside TextEdit running on Windows."
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iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 7 years ago

iluvcapra writes "This news is a little late, but on November 20th WarGames 2: The Dead Code began filming in Montreal, produced and distributed by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (distributor of the original WarGames) and directed by Stewart Gillard (apparently the director of such gems as Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles 3.) Lawrence Lasker and Walter F. Parkes, the team behind the original film, are not involved, and the plot revolves around a hacker breaking into a terrorism-simulation computer.

I only became aware of the new production when I read MGM was suing the rightful owner of WarGames.com for his domain name."
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iluvcapra iluvcapra writes  |  more than 7 years ago

iluvcapra writes "Computerworld reports that in a 2004 company email read in the Microsoft-Iowa anti-trust trial, Jim Allchin, at the time head of Microsoft's Windows unit, would have bought a Mac if he wasn't currently working for Microsoft. "In my view, we lost our way," he writes about Microsoft. He continued:
"I think our teams lost sight of what bug-free means, what resilience means, what full scenarios mean, what security means, what performance means, how important current applications are, and really understanding what the most important problems our customers face are. I see lots of random features and some great vision, but that does not translate into great products."


It was also revealed by prosecutors that Bill Gates has an assistant who's primary responsibility is to "make sure no permanent record of Gates' e-mail existed.""

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