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UEA Research Shows Oceans Vital For Possibility of Alien Life

khasim Extremophile (97 comments)

Extremophile

I'm thinking more along the lines of "Life that will use radio signals (or similar) to communicate in such a way that we have a chance of detecting them without either of us leaving our solar systems".

But that's a bit wordy.

about a week ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Re:Sounds like Swordfish (the movie). (435 comments)

Of course I am postulating that a hacker can break it.

No. You are postulating that a hacker that can break it WOULD TURN TO CRIME INSTEAD OF MAKING $150,000+ A YEAR WORKING FOR A COMPANY THAT MANUFACTURES THOSE CARS.

Why would the car be the only computer in human creation immune to hacking you completely absurd asshat?

No one except you has claimed that.

I'm saying that the skills needed to crack that system are very rare AND very valuable IN LEGITIMATE BUSINESS SETTINGS.

So WHY would someone who could make a lot of money LEGALLY use those very rare skills in a crime? Why would that person WANT to become a criminal?

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Sounds like Swordfish (the movie). (435 comments)

You do not need the skill to program. You just need the leverage to make someone who has the skills do it for you.

Yeah, just like in the movie. Swordfish.

Why "swordfish"? Because the password is always "swordfish".

Once it is done once, it becomes much easier to do a second time.

You are still postulating a hacker that can crack the protections that Google's programmers have put around the code already.

Additionally, now you are also required to:

a. learn which of the hackers in the world is capable of defeating those protections/re-programming the vehicle

b. force/entice that hacker to do so

c. prevent that hacker from selling the exploit to Google before you've completed your crime(s)

And once it is done it will become MORE difficult because Google will issue a patch or recall to prevent it.

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Re:Drug mule? How? (435 comments)

Dammit, I never rented that driverless car. Yes, I know that it was my credit card and I hadn't reported it stolen, but it wasn't me!

Simple denials do not work with the police. Particularly if you can be placed at the same location as the autonomous car was.

paid for rentals aren't generally reported as stolen.

You are using your credit card to rent a vehicle that will be carrying illegal drugs. That is not a good idea if you do not want to be caught.

Unless you have data to show it is significantly anomolous, it is irrelevant.

No. It would be anomalous. Unless vehicle usage changes dramatically once autonomous cars are introduced. Unoccupied vehicles between cities would probably not be the norm.

random stops?

Not "random". The vehicle is stopped because it is suspicious. The reason it is suspicious is because it is between cities without an occupant.

Cops don't just go pulling over and searching vehicles on a random basis.

Again, not "random". See above.

And again, drug mules are only effective if they appear to belong to a category that the police are not interested in. If YOU can think that an unoccupied car would be a good drug mule then the police can think the same thing.

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim I doubt it. (435 comments)

... despite of me being an engineer, and a computer scientist, ...

Okay, so you claim to be an engineer AND a computer scientist. That means a LOT of math classes for you.

A driverless car cannot stop within abrupt short time.

Yes it can. That's basic math. Stopping distance is determined by 3 things:

1. reaction time (computers are quicker than humans)

2. speed

3. surface conditions

So the autonomous car should stop in a shorter distance than a human would.

Just one, one only, example: If presented by either hitting a 4-year-old child or an octogenarian; ...

Someone with a degree in computer science should know that computers only run programs. Therefore, SOMEONE would have to have made the decision to program the autonomous car to categorize certain objects as "4-year-old child" and other objects as "octogenarian".

Furthermore, someone with a degree in computer science would know how extremely difficult such a task would be.

Whereas recognizing "obstacle" is much easier to program. So the same action would be taken no matter what the obstacle was. And that action should be to stop.

Stop.

If the passenger wants to take over control of the vehicle at that time then that is an option. But the autonomous car should just stop. And it would do that fast than a human could do that.

A bus with 12 passengers comes up frontally (driven by an imperfect human driver, I guess).

Again, someone with a degree in computer science can tell you how difficult it would be to write a program that could, correctly, determine how many passengers there were in a vehicle.

So, when presented with an obstacle, the autonomous vehicle should stop. And do so faster than a human could.

Stop.

Now, from a BUSINESS viewpoint the company would be liable for damages should they ship a car that incorrectly identified an obstacle as anything other than an obstacle ("a 4-year-old child", "an octogenarian", "bus with 12 passengers") which resulted in injury or death to the occupants of the autonomous vehicle. Therefore, no company would write such a program.

Whichever the decision, the perfect driverless car becomes a pragmatic killing machine.

You have confused "artificial intelligence" with "autonomous car".

An autonomous car is not the same as an artificial intelligence. Nor would an autonomous car be programmed with the sub-routines that you are postulating.

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Okay .... (435 comments)

As to the two things... what the fuck are you even talking about?

Programming. The car is autonomous because of a computer on-board that runs programs.

And those programs are extremely sophisticated. Which is why it is taking so long to get the programming correct.

In order to "steal" a car you have to be able to re-program it. And if you CAN re-program it then why are you willing to give up a job that will pay $150,000+ to program them for Google?

Are you fucking kidding? Is this a joke?

Okay. How do YOU think an autonomous car works?

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Drug mule? How? (435 comments)

The above drug mule example is excellent!

How? It is legally tied to someone. And it has not been reported stolen. Yet it is travelling X miles, unattended.

Unless you're supposing an intra-city delivery service that would probably look very suspicious. How many legal trips match that?

Now, whether the cops could, legally, search it while it is unoccupied on the highway is an issue that will have to be sorted out. But the cops could always contact the registered owner of the car and ASK to search it.

It is not enough to obey the laws. You also have to appear to belong in a category that the cops are not interested in.

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Correct for the first part. (435 comments)

Physical security is the first rule.

if you don't have it then your system is not secure.

That part is correct.

But that pre-supposes that the CRIMINAL has two things:

1. the skills to reprogram the car AND STILL MAKE IT WORK

2. the desire to become a criminal

If I'm a criminal, I can remote control the car and use it as a surface going drone.

No. You also need the skills to reprogram the car AND STILL MAKE IT WORK.

Those skills are the limiting factor here.

I can go on a car stealing spree and fill a garage with dozens of cars.

Only if you had the skills to reprogram the car AND ....

And then all at once send them out onto the road as wingmen to assist in whatever I want to do.

Only if you had the skills to reprogram ....

They could set up roadblocks all over town... they could ram police cars.

Only if you had the skills ....

And even then you'd have to have a reason for wanting to become a criminal instead of using those same skills to earn $150,000+ a year programming the cars for Google or their competitors.

about two weeks ago
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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

khasim Less. (435 comments)

But seriously, if these are concerns for driverless cars, they are concerns for regular cars too.

The thing is that an autonomous car would probably be programmed to follow ALL the traffic laws.

What good is a get-away car that stops at every red/yellow light and yields to pedestrians?

That's not even going into whether the car would pull to the side of the road and stop when it detected emergency vehicle lights/sirens.

about two weeks ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

khasim Re:Christmas is coming early this year (702 comments)

Take away the security and you don't even need "smart" or "poised".

No one is saying that there should not be any security.

Keep security static and you don't need smart people - just enough attempts from dullards until they chance upon a workaround, the way penicillin eventually adapts to an antibiotic.

You might want to review that. And the "dullards" still need a basic level of competence. And that basic level of competence is what is extremely rare.

But not non-existent, as history has shown.

And it will never be "non-existent". Ever. As long as airplanes are still used. So putting "non-existent" as a criteria means that you will always fail.

And you will never know if the money being spent is not being wasted because there incidents are so rare already.

So your point about "reducing risk" is meaningless.

about three weeks ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

khasim Re:Christmas is coming early this year (702 comments)

Think in terms of Venn diagrams: start with "people who want to blow up an airplane".

I'd change that to "people anywhere in the world who want to blow up a plane in the USofA". Which is a large number of people.

But then:

Now add "operatives smart and poised enough to carry out the attack but willing to kill themselves in the process".

Another slight change. "Operatives smart and poised enough to carry out the attack in the USofA but willing to ...". This is a very, very, very small number.

You don't need any of the other qualifiers because with just those two criteria you've reduced the number to almost non-existence.

So the problem would be to find someone who fit the "smart and poised" category. Once that person is found, you can teach him/her whatever is needed from a technical standpoint.

It's not insanity - it's all about reducing risk.

I disagree. The risk is already almost non-existent. Causing more difficulties for non-threat people will not reduce the risk any further.

about three weeks ago
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No Shortage In Tech Workers, Advocacy Groups Say

khasim Re:So post the info here. (401 comments)

I think you've missed the point.

I think I nailed the point. YOU claim that YOU cannot find people to hire for a position that YOU cannot identify or even characterize. Is it programming? Is it networking?

There is no glut of competent workers.

Any yet YOU cannot characterize the position that YOU claim YOU have open except:

I'm not even looking for particular skills or experience. Just people who are genuinely into technology.

So you will train people who are not currently qualified ... but there isn't anyone who is qualified.

Not all businesses allow you to post jobs to Slashdot, although I suppose I could lobby to change that internally.

If you're running the ad on Dice or someplace then post a LINK to that posting.

You are quick to claim that you cannot find qualified people (even though you'd train someone who was not qualified) but rather reticent to post any information about the opening you claim to have.

That's suspicious.

You're statement about narrowing my search is also part of the problem with this industry. A good engineer can work on almost anything.

No. A good automotive engineer CANNOT design a bridge as well as a good civil engineer. And neither of those are electrical engineers.

And someone looking for a programmer would NOT have any problem stating that AND what language(s).

about three weeks ago
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No Shortage In Tech Workers, Advocacy Groups Say

khasim So post the info here. (401 comments)

I've been trying to hire developers for multiple high-compensation positions in NYC.

So post it here.

Truly smart/capable/motivated people are not looking for jobs. They are already employed.

Yes. Usually. So you have to offer them something MORE than they have at their current job to make them willing to take a risk on a new job.

I'm not even looking for particular skills or experience. Just people who are genuinely into technology.

Yeah. You might want to re-evaluate your criteria.

At least narrow it down to whether you're looking for a programmer or a CCIE. Is this about writing drivers? Or programming EPROM chips? Or iPhone games? Or encryption? SatNav?

about three weeks ago
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Employees Staying Away From Internal Corporate Social Networks

khasim Re:Waste of time (131 comments)

...(1) the only contributors are employees with time on their hands, who tend to be the drones.

Maybe. They do need extra time to type something up that can be read the way they intended it.

Those employees who actually know someting useful to you are too busy to waste time with crap like this

I'd say it was because the people with the knowledge are busy applying that knowledge to the issues that have arisen that affect X people. Do they have time to type a reply to your question if your question isn't shared by X other people?

We've all had to wade through different forums looking for answers where there are thousands of threads NOT related to what YOU are having a problem with.

And no one thinks about the problem the same way YOU do. I cannot print. Why? Because I changed my password and forgot it and cannot login to get the document to print it. So it is a printing problem.

(2) the only employees who will tell you anything at all are ones you have actually met face to face - otherwise you are not a real person, and they don't trust you, no matter what you say.

I've seen this in action and it annoys me. The people who get their problems addressed are the people who:

a. Have the time to camp out next to someone until that someone fixes their problem.

b. Have a manager who can demand that the other manager re-allocate their workers' time to fix the problem.

c. Have already established a friendship with the person who can fix the problem. I brought cookies for you! Hope you like them. By the way, there's a small problem with the X. Could you look at it sometime?

about three weeks ago
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Employees Staying Away From Internal Corporate Social Networks

khasim Re:besides that (131 comments)

Employers can read your emails, so having a 'conversation' on a social tool should not be a problem as long as you don't include stuff you wouldn't include in a meeting or email.

But that is the problem. There are already different avenues for that same professional interaction.

If you want a permanent record of something you write it down and submit it to management.

If you want a permanent record of the discussion of something you put it in email.

If you do NOT want a permanent record then you meet in person. Or use a phone that the company does not control (record).

They are really to do work related stuff,explore ideas and share information.

That's too much of mixing the informal with the formal. And leaving a permanent trail. People can already do that at the water-cooler or coffee machine WITHOUT it becoming a permanent record at HR. And if someone is remote you can always include them on speaker-phone.

about three weeks ago
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Employees Staying Away From Internal Corporate Social Networks

khasim Re:besides that (131 comments)

Think about the things you do and say with your friends AFTER work.

How many of those things would you want to personally document for your boss (and his boss and his boss ...)?

So when those interesting things are absent from the "social" media part it becomes just another boring means for management to distribute work-related material. Just like all those boring "team meetings" that you are forced to attend. Where the exact same material will be covered AGAIN for anyone who did not read the internal site.

about three weeks ago
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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Religious Objections To Contraception

khasim Re:Not the same. (1330 comments)

Condom breaks and the woman ... Too bad asshole, ... lied about being on pills.

Okay. It seems that you have some other issues than the subject at hand. You might want to take them off-line.

And what stops her from seeing the regular doc then getting the script filled at a clinic?

Doesn't that sort of depend upon the location of the free clinic? And what hours it is available? And whether she has to go through any protesters to get inside?

And whether this ruling can be interpreted to allow a company to refuse coverage for the doctor visit to prescribe the pills?

My insurance company isn't giving me free condoms, and I don't have any get out of jail free cards made available to me if my birth control fails.

I think that your side issues are becoming a problem with your ability to discuss the main issue.

about a month ago
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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Religious Objections To Contraception

khasim Statistics. (1330 comments)

The insurance companies charge different rates for different demographics because the insurance companies have the statistics to back up their pricing.

Insurance is heavily regulated at the federal and state level. If the insurance companies are charging demographic X more than demographic Y they had to provide evidence based upon statistics that showed X is involved in more accidents or more costly accidents than Y.

about a month ago
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U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Religious Objections To Contraception

khasim Not the same. (1330 comments)

Getting hormonal birth control from a doctor other than your regular doctor means that those two doctors have to both have access to your medical records or both consult on any issues you might have.

Different pills have different effects (and side effects) on different women.

The only time it makes sense for a woman to get hormonal birth control from a free clinic is when that is her only source of non-emergency medical care.

about a month ago

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