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Police Body Cam Privacy Exploitation

lazyforker Re:We already have laws to cover this (301 comments)

"3 years" - well it depends on how the data is being stored and retrieved, and how it's being supplied to the requestor, and how much there is. Imagine manually importing and transcoding (somehow losslessly) 8 hours of HD video (I'm guessing here - 1 officer's shift) to DVD-sized blobs; burning the DVDs; printing/applying labels (or generating print jobs to print on the disk); packing and shipping the disks etc. Now multiply that process by the number of shifts worked since the cameras were introduced. I doubt that the police dept keeps a team of video engineers employed just for the purpose of generating DVDs for extortionists.

about 2 months ago

Police Body Cam Privacy Exploitation

lazyforker Re:Legalities (301 comments)

This sounds reasonable. I'd also like some kind of "video cannot be used commercially" license. And perhaps the data should be destroyed after (say) 6 months if: there's no successful conviction, there's no Internal Affairs investigation underway, there's no pending or ongoing lawsuit/prosecution against a police officer.

about 2 months ago

Apple Faces Large Penalties In EU Tax Probe

lazyforker Re:Finally (120 comments)

Apple (and the *many* other companies that indulge in the same behavior) *do* pay all the legally required taxes. The trick is that there are various governments (ranging from municipal to national) that offer perks, tax benefits etc to companies if they locate themselves in their jurisdiction. You can see this at work pretty much everywhere. It's not an Apple story, or an Irish story: it's just corporations using their leverage to get better deals than you or I (probably just average working stiffs) can get. As for the EU trying to get taxes retroactively: surely the EU would have to first prove that *Apple* did something illegal. But if the Irish laws supported Apple what's the legal basis for trying to claim back taxes?

about 4 months ago

$30K Worth of Multimeters Must Be Destroyed Because They're Yellow

lazyforker Re:Did Fluke request this? (653 comments)

Trademarks have to be defended. Even if Fluke wanted to be "nice" they'd be forced to to take action - otherwise they're allowing their mark to be diluted.

I feel bad for Sparkfun, but I don't understand why Sparkfun made their DMM look almost the same as a pre-eminent market leader's design. Surely they've heard of the Apple vs Samsung "look and feel" lawsuits? IANAL but even I know that trade marks are important.

about 10 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Simple Backups To a Neighbor?

lazyforker Re:crashplan might still work (285 comments)

I think the poster's main concern is that Crashplan won't ship a physical disk to his/her location in the event of total site disaster. Crashplan does have a Java client that runs on some NAS devices - e.g. Synology's line of devices. So placing a device like that in your neighbor's house might work. (I use Crashplan+ but if my house burned down, I could wait a few months before getting the bulk of my data back.) Alternatively - buy something like this: http://www.filetransporter.com/learn-more/ I've only just seen the ad for these things but from a consumer's point of view they look awesome. Buy two "Sync" models with the external USB drive of your choice and set them to sync. Use one locally on your home LAN, and connect the other to your neighbor's LAN. Done.

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: How To Deal With Refurbed Drives With Customer Data?

lazyforker Re:Two choices... (385 comments)

Agreed. In this case I would notify Newegg so that they can pass the message up their supply chain. Hopefully their supplier would change their behaviour. I would also send the drive back because I would be expecting that as part of the refurb process the vendor would be performing low-level formatting - which would've wiped everything.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: What Do You Like To Read?

lazyforker Re:Wheel Of Time (647 comments)

Return the favour: give that bastard the first two George RR Martin "Song of Fire and Ice" books.

more than 3 years ago

Google Donating $11.5M To Fight Modern Slavery

lazyforker I thought the headline said "modem" slavery (302 comments)

The font on my browser makes the "r" and "n" so close that they look like "m". Google is finally going to rid us of dialup Internet access???? WTF? Is that really such a big problem?

more than 3 years ago

Rethinking Rail Travel: Boarding a Moving Train

lazyforker Re:The buses in Brasil already do this.... (357 comments)

In Rio de Janeiro, when I lived there, if you looked at all agile the bus would not completely stop to let you on. It would slow down to a walking pace so you could grab the handle next to the door and let the momentum of the train swing you aboard. Since you boarded at the rear door and exited at the front door you never go in the way of disembarking passengers; who also often exited while the bus was moving.

It was great sport and probably saved a lot of fuel. Not sure I'd like to do it at my age now (68) but I might just for old times' sake. LOL

A similar system was in place in London. There was an open platform at the back of the bus: if you were fast you could sprint up to a bus and get on even if it was pulling away from the stop. Likewise you could jump out exactly where you wanted to. The bus still made actual stops so other passengers could get on/off but for me it was so much more convenient and fun to get on/off while the bus was in motion. The good ol' days. I think the bus design changed to ensure that all passengers had to pass the driver (who was is also now the conductor). Previously the different roles were fulfilled by two people.

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Best Long-Term Video/Picture Storage?

lazyforker Re:CrashPlan (499 comments)

+1 for CrashPlan as a *backup* solution.

CrashPlan works well for me. I backup my data locally (main Mac to 2nd Mac) and remotely (main Mac to CrashPlan). The option to encrypt data with your own key is *very* attractive.

But I think it's probably easier to rent some hosting space and create your own "photo share" website. You could permission the directories more granularly etc. I mourn Apple's decision to shutdown their MobileMe galleries because it was perfect for sharing photos with family/friends (it's laughably easy to publish from iPhoto or Aperture).

more than 3 years ago

New BIOS Exploiting Rootkit Discovered

lazyforker Re:Why (205 comments)

Name one reason why it is a good idea that application programs or the kernel or ANYTHING ELSE should even be ABLE to screw with the BIOS. There should be a big red PHYSICAL switch which makes the BIOS read-only, and it should only be temporarily turned off to allow updating with the manufacturer's files and NOTHING ELSE.

I'll bite: bulk BIOS updates on thousands of PCs. My company has an enormous number of PCs - paying someone to manually flick a switch, stand by while a BIOS update is performed, then unflick it afterwards would represent an enormous cost in time and labor. We buy large numbers of identical machines every year - so when a BIOS update is needed it needs to be applied to a lot of machines, globally.

Secondly: we set BIOS passwords to prevent (or make it harder for) the machine to be booted from USB thumb drive, DVD, external hard drive etc.

How about making the PC detect signed BIOS packages?

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Geeky Volunteer Work?

lazyforker Re:Don't worry if it's "Geeky" (229 comments)

Exactly. I did Habitat for Humanity build with my church. I was slinging sod with a lawyer, rocket scientist, and a microbiologist while several of our other members where doing the skilled job of putting in windows. It was a lot of fun and we since we did two weeks worth of work that day. Because of our efforts a single mom and her two kids got to move in on Mothers day weekend. Why just use the skills you have when you can gain more skills, Do you know how to hang dry wall, lay tile, install cabinets, or frame a wall? Now is the time to learn. The skill of being a geek is the ability to learn. So use that skill. Find out what needs to be done where you live and do it. I could be helping in a school, Big Brother/Big Sisters, or a local food bank. Not as glamourous as going to Africa but then you may be needed down the street now. Just find a cause your interested in and say, "How can I help?"


I was going to post exactly the same thing. I volunteered for Habitat through my employer's philanthropy scheme. I learned a lot of useful homebuilding stuff. In addition to the skills you've mentioned I learned how to install hardwood flooring and exterior wall insulation.

There're plenty of geeking opportunities: in addition to the enormous number of extremely dangerous power tools you may use, there're hundreds of hand tools, lots of Pythagorean mathematics, different materials' properties, stress/strain etc. You'll be physically active, be maintaining the discipline of turning up at a work site and meet a different set of people.

Plus there's the added bonus that you get to practice all your new skills on somebody else's house while under the tutelage of someone who knows what they're doing.

Finally: if you ever need work done on your own home you can have an educated idea about the cost/effort required to, say, frame and finish your basement yourself. You may be able to weed out unscrupulous contractors, or even undertake the work yourself.

Other commenters have noted that while this is not as glamourous as a trip to a developing nation (BTW which African nation???) it is probably more practical in the short time you have. Your own community needs your help too.

more than 3 years ago

Microsoft's SkyDrive Drops Silverlight

lazyforker NetFlix uses Silverlight (358 comments)

I believe NetFlix uses Silverlight for their streaming service. (I suspect it's because Silverlight has DRM support and NetFlix probably couldn't get permission to stream DRM-less media.) But Silverlight is also one of the major platforms for Windows Phone 7. So I doubt Silverlight is going anywhere. Plus - as other commenters have noted: we shouldn't bash MSFT for moving towards standards-based solutions, we should applaud!

more than 3 years ago

Amazon Tests a Home-Delivery Service For Groceries

lazyforker In New York City... (176 comments)

...we already have FreshDirect http://www.freshdirect.com/ Their model is to streamline the delivery from growers to consumers. The model works well in a highly urbanized area like NYC; especially when the competition is WholeFoods and their overpriced, crowded, inconvenient ilk.

more than 3 years ago

Cheap GPUs Rendering Strong Passwords Useless

lazyforker Re:Summary, article, and references all FUD. (615 comments)

Windows has some unsavory habits. Windows 2000 or later systems will store NTLM hashes for backwards compatibility. Many administrators do not know this; and fail to disable this "feature". cf href="http://support.microsoft.com/kb/299656">How to prevent Windows from storing a LAN manager hash of your password in Active Directory and local SAM databases

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Are You Streaming-Only For Home Entertainment?

lazyforker Re:We've been streaming-only for a year and a half (697 comments)

Then we looked at our $96/month DirecTv bill and thought, "Hmm.....,"

(Some) Americans pay nearly $100/month for TV??? As a continental European, this is completely beyond my comprehension ...

I'm a Brit living in NYC so I find it even more absurd.

$100 is just the beginning. Throw in some premium movie channels, HBO, or sports channels (usually they're bundled weirdly so you'd have to buy two or three bundles to get all the movie channels) and suddenly you're not far from $200 per month. You end up with 1000 channels of shit; and 3 channels from 3 separate bundles that you actually watch.

I ditched cable TV about 5 years ago and haven't looked back. I use iTunes, NetFlix and the usual Hulu/web channels (and, once or twice while they existed, BlockBuster!) and don't feel like I'm missing out. My 2006 Mac Mini makes an awesome HTPC - I replaced the HDD with an SSD, upgraded RAM - and it's been quietly rendering streaming video on my TV for just over 5 years.

I'm a Time Warner Cable "customer" (I have no choice!) - the only concession I made was to upgrade my cable modem bandwidth. (I often telecommute or connect to my employer's VPN for out-of-hours support so it wasn't a big deal anyway.)

The biggest drawbacks are probably: delayed access to some new releases (not a big deal for me), occasional weird holes in the catalogs eg no Disney movies, limited access to new TV shows (I just watch old shows...)

The other drawback is due to my specific combination of hardware - my TV doesn't correctly identify it's resolution, front porch, etc to my Mini so the desktop is actually cropped. I could have fixed this using third party tools eg DisplayConfigX (http://www.3dexpress.de/) but I'm lazy.

more than 3 years ago

IsoHunt To Court: Google Is the Bigger Problem

lazyforker Re:Oh snap! (270 comments)

They'll continue trying to take down Isohunt because they're a much smaller target and their pockets are not as deep. Then they can start working their way up the food chain, using the results of smaller cases as precedent.

more than 3 years ago

How many Slashdot polls did you respond to last year?

lazyforker Re:None? (149 comments)

The question is "How many Slashdot polls did you respond to last year?" - so the responder could answer "None" truthfully. IE In 2010 or the previous lunar year they responded to no polls. But in 2011 they've responded to at least one.

more than 3 years ago



Elcomsoft Claims No Mobile Password Keeper App Lives Up To Security Promises

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  more than 2 years ago

lazyforker (957705) writes "Password recovery app developer Elcomsoft issued a press release summarizing the effectiveness (or otherwise) of various password manager apps for iOS and BlackBerry devices. Android was not discussed.

In the press release is a link to the full whitepaper:

At the end of the whitepaper there are some recommendations for each type of device user.

Apps reviewed/discussed:
Keeper® Password & Data Vault
Password Safe — iPassSafe free version
My Eyes OnlyTM — Secure Password Manager
Strip Lite — Password Manager
Safe — Password Awesome Password Lite Password Lock Lite
iSecure Lite — Password Manager
Ultimate Password Manager Free
Secret Folder Lite
SafeWallet — Password Manager
SplashID Safe for iPhone
DataVault Password Manager
mSecure — Password Manager
LastPass for Premium Customers
1Password Pro
BlackBerry Password Keeper
BlackBerry Wallet 1.0
BlackBerry Wallet 1.2"

Link to Original Source

Security flaw in Apple iPhone 4 iOS 4.1

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  more than 4 years ago

lazyforker (957705) writes "According to a story in The Guardian a Brazilian man found a flaw allowing a partial bypass of the PIN code lock screen. Using the "Emergency Call" feature in combination with the power button allows one access to the 'phone, Contacts, call history, voicemail. Colleagues and I confirmed it works! Try it for yourself: in the lock screen slide the unlock bar, tap the "Emergency Call" button, enter ### as the emergency number, tap the call button and immediately hit the power button on top of the 'phone."
Link to Original Source

Browser privacy test - Safari and Flash fail.

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  about 6 years ago

lazyforker (957705) writes "A NYTimes blog post reports the results of security researcher Kate McKinley's tests of various browsers' (FireFox, Chrome, IE, Safari) privacy protection mechanisms. Specifically she tested their cookie handling. She also examined their handling of Flash's cookies. In summary: Safari on Mac OS X (in the "private browsing" mode) is not so private ("quirky"). Safari on XP is not private at all. Flash behaves awfully everywhere.
Here's the NYTimes article: http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/12/30/adobes-flash-and-apples-safari-fail-a-privacy-test/
Here's McKinley's report: http://www.isecpartners.com/files/iSEC_Cleaning_Up_After_Cookies.pdf
Here's how to clean up after Adobe's Flash: http://kb.adobe.com/selfservice/viewContent.do?externalId=52697ee8&sliceId=1"

Link to Original Source

'Racetrack memory' increases data density by 100

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  more than 7 years ago

lazyforker (957705) writes "This short article describes IBM's research into novel forms of data storage technologies. In particular the lab is working on a type called "racetrack memory". This racetrack is a lot smaller than your local dog track. Promises of huge amounts of data in tiny form factors are made.
This research is being led by the man who brought us GMR — consequently I think there's a chance this could work."

Link to Original Source

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  more than 7 years ago

lazyforker (957705) writes "Jobs opened Apple's WWDC today. His keynote mostly focussed on Leopard. Looks slick. Wired blogged the speech and of course Apple's website has an updated description. Games from EA can be expected; and it looks like ID is building a while new game technology that will be demonstrated on multiple platforms later this year (Mac, PC, PS3 and Xbox).
Wired says that 10 of Leopard's new features (of 300!) were demonstrated by Jobs. Here's a brief summary:
  • New Desktop — Core animation, Stacks, more prominent active window
  • New Finder — Coverflow! Seearch anywhere on the network! "Back to my Mac" sync utility
  • "Quick Look" — instant preview of any document/file without opening app.
  • 64 bit throughout
  • Core animation everywhere
  • Boot Camp
  • "Spaces" — seems like multiple desktops
  • Updated Dashboard (not 3D) with ability for user to create widgets from any web content
  • iChat — tabbed chats, easy file transfer, cool effects (including a "green screen" style tool)
  • Time Machine — backup

Incidentally — it looks like Apple's whole website has a shiny new look and feel. Presumably based on Leopard."

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  more than 7 years ago

lazyforker (957705) writes " IBM has created a new type of on chip memory dubbed eDRAM (embedded Dynamic Random Access Memory) that "improves on-processor memory performance in about one-third the space with one-fifth the standby power of conventional SRAM (static random access memory)". IBM anticipates the technology will be in production in early 2008. The article is light on tech data — but apparently this memory is designed to be used with multi-core processors."

lazyforker lazyforker writes  |  more than 8 years ago

lazyforker writes "According to Seed Magazine the Wii controller may make games more emotionally-involving (and thus presumably more captivating).
While Nintendo argues that the wireless controller makes game play more intuitive — you no longer have to remember arcane sequences of buttons — it actually does something much more powerful: By involving your body in the on-screen action, the Wii makes video games more emotional.

The article goes on to explain why this might be so. The theory is (roughly) that the mind and body interact with each other to produce emotions — hence combining motion with mental activity generates a "body loop" — essentially a feedback loop. Is this Nintendo's competitive advantage?"


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