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Net Neutrality Is 'Marxist,' According To a Koch-Backed Astroturf Group

maz2331 Re:Marxist? Really? (493 comments)

It is more akin to UPS charging both the sender and the recipient of the package for the same service.

2 days ago
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Net Neutrality Is 'Marxist,' According To a Koch-Backed Astroturf Group

maz2331 Re:Not Net Neutrality (493 comments)

Another reason why the US won that race was that the extreme antisemitism in both the USSR and the Nazi regimes caused them to experience a major brain drain as a lot of scientists emigrated to the US, or were killed/imprisoned/repressed at home. Add to that the fact that US had the only industrial base that wasn't damaged by fighting and bombing, thus making it pretty close to inevitable that it would be first.

2 days ago
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Google's Driverless Cars Capable of Exceeding Speed Limit

maz2331 Re:Left or Right? (475 comments)

It is very similar in some US states as well. Here in PA, there is a 10 MPH tolerance built into the law (reduced to 5 MPH in 65 MPH zones).

about a week ago
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California May Waive Environmental Rules For Tesla

maz2331 Re:Screwed... (327 comments)

Regulations that actually accomplish something other than employing compliance officers who file reams of paperwork are necessary and a good thing. The problem comes when they morph into Byzantine rules that are self-contradictory and only serve as a jobs program for bureaucrats (both public and private) and lawyers.

about two weeks ago
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Larry Rosen: A Case Study In Understanding (and Enforcing) the GPL

maz2331 Re:What if it were Microsoft code (191 comments)

Indeed. This is no different from distributing, say, a copy of Oracle's database with your code without a licensing deal. They don't require a key code to install or run it - you can download, install and run it, but without paying $17k per processor, you are in violation of their copyright.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Is Running Mission-Critical Servers Without a Firewall Common?

maz2331 PCI DSS Standards (348 comments)

That design tells me that you need to put a PCI-compliant hardware firewall between the POS and its associated DB server, and the rest of the internal network. And you also need to have a firewall logger that is actually looked at daily, plus you need to do vulnerability scans both internally and externally. A Windows firewall is not sufficient and won't meet PCI DSS requirements in any event, ever, and isn't going to provide any benefit if the firewall between the POS network and the rest of the store/enterprise is in place.

Any device that processes, carries, or stores ANY credit/debit card data that isn't encrypted *must* be behind a firewall that only permits it to send traffic to specific hosts that are necessary for the functioning of the system, and even then only on the bare minimum number of ports, and almost all inbound traffic is denied as well.

about a month ago
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Tesla Aims For $30,000 Price, 2017 Launch For Model E

maz2331 Re:Not Aluminum? Not a good sign. (247 comments)

Steel can be a quite good material if it is properly protected. And there is no excuse for a vehicle exhaust system to not be made from stainless steel that doesn't easily corrode. Hell, I had a Chevy Cavalier in 1992 that was built that way.

about 2 months ago
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Tesla Aims For $30,000 Price, 2017 Launch For Model E

maz2331 Re:Profit before subsidy? (247 comments)

It does compare quite nicely to my $45k BMW, though. I'd be a potential buyer at the $30k price point in a couple of years, once my current ride is paid off.

about 2 months ago
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Judge Frees "Cannibal Cop" Who Shared His Fantasies Online

maz2331 Re:First "OMG the common sense" post (185 comments)

The arrests for terrorism only happen when there is an overt act taken in the real world (aka "meatspace") where an actual attempt is made to do damage. The cops just ensure that the damage isn't actually possible, but the target of their investigation doesn't know that.

That said, those cases do need to be very carefully reviewed for entrapment concerns. If the cops are coercing or near-brainwashing someone with a weak personality into doing something that they wouldn't otherwise do then there is a big problem, whereas if they are only playing along with a pre-existing plot or tendency then it is not entrapment.

This is a case where there is plenty of probable cause to have initiated an investigation and termination of employment, and any appropriate punishment for misuse of public records, but until the acts discussed were actually acted upon in some way in the real world it wasn't yet a crime.

about 2 months ago
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CDC: 1 In 10 Adult Deaths In US Caused By Excessive Drinking

maz2331 No Such Thing (454 comments)

There is no such thing as a "preventable death", at least until we develop some form of immortality. It can only be delayed or accelerated, and the cause can be shifted. Everyone is going to die at some point in time.

about 2 months ago
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New Chemical Process Could Make Ammonia a Practical Car Fuel

maz2331 Re:waste of time (380 comments)

Ammonia has an energy density of 22.5 MJ/kg and gasoline's is 42.4 MJ/kg - roughly 53%. The physical density is also lower, with gasoline coming in at an average of 0.75 kg/L and the ammonia at 0.68 kg/l. If you want to look at energy per volume, then the results are about 15.3 MJ/l for ammonia, and 31.8 MJ/l for gasoline (or about 48%).

Assuming that the conversion efficiency is the same, then your fuel tank would need to be double the size for the same range, however fuel cells and electric propulsion is generally in the 80% range whereas an internal combustion engine is around 25%.

As a fuel for a conventional engine, ammonia has the downside of needing more physical storage space, and its cost has to be less than half that of gasoline per volume unit (gallons or liters) to be economical - especially since it requires modification to existing engines to be used, and tends to not produce nearly the same power output. In a fuel-cell hybrid that has higher efficiency, it would be quite viable, though that would depend on the retail cost of the stuff along with the cost delta of the vehicle itself.

about 2 months ago
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EU High Court To Review US-EU Data Safe Harbor Agreement

maz2331 At what point (60 comments)

When are the US-based companies going to simply shut down their satellite offices in the EU, keep all personnel in the USA, and change their TOS such that any use is under US and California law? They could simply outsource their sales operations to a third-party in foreign jurisdictions.

about 2 months ago
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House Majority Leader Defeated In Primary

maz2331 Re:Democrats voted (932 comments)

There is no Dem to run against in the general election in that district - nobody bothered to run, just as no Republicans ran in the 8th District. Some areas are so solidly one-party that the other doesn't even bother to run.

about 3 months ago
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Seattle Approves $15 Per Hour Minimum Wage

maz2331 Re:Even higher! (1040 comments)

In the absence of inflation, it is a valid measurement. With any inflation, though, the number of dollars needs to grow as fast or faster than the inflation of the currency, or one is losing wealth.

about 3 months ago
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Congress Unhappy With FCC's Proposed Changes To Net Neutrality

maz2331 Re:The FCC has no right to dictate terms (208 comments)

Even all but the most insane Libertarians understand that some regulation is necessary to prevent bad outcomes. I once heard a speech by Ron Paul, of all people, defend environmental regulations on the grounds that one doesn't have the right to pollute their neighbor's air or water.

Network neutrality is that sort of regulation.

There do exist other sort of "gotcha" regulations like HIPAA that are so detailed as to be nothing more than a paperwork minefield designed to crank the costs of compliance through the roof for smaller players, while adding maybe the paperclip budget to the cost of the bigger ones, while generally serving little to no real-world purpose.

about 3 months ago
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Why Lavabit Shut Down

maz2331 Re:USA, the land of freedom (304 comments)

Even today, China's manufacturing is still mostly in the low-value parts of the market. Assembling circuit boards or making PC cases isn't quite like our still vast superiority in real heavy industry. The problem is that our productivity is off the charts via automation instead of labor - we just don't need a big enough labor force in manufacturing to support a large middle class based on those industries.

about 3 months ago
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AMD Preparing To Give Intel a Run For Its Money

maz2331 Re:I'm Still Rooting for AMD (345 comments)

AMD has historically made huge gains in a stair-step fashion where they are flat or declining for a long period, then leapfrog way ahead of Intel, who then catch up and pass them in a more linear fashion.

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Easy-To-Use Alternative To MS Access For a Charity's Database?

maz2331 DB vs Front-End (281 comments)

I have done extensive work with Access, but almost never used it as the actual storage. Instead, the back-end was on a MySQL, MSSQL, or Postgres server and Access just used as a quick-development environment in the same manner as VB6 would have been.

Nowadays, I usually use MSSQL or Postgres as the backend, and build the front-end in VB.NET or C#. Once your tables are designed, just add a function that has the appropriate bunch of CREATE TABLE statements and initial INSERTs to set up a default schema, and the deployment is pretty easy.

Telling a client how to reach the backend only requires a server name (or IP), database username, database password, and database name. These are variables that are easily set in a simple "setup form" then stored in the registry. Heck, if you want to get fancy, just encode that into a structure and write it to a binary file that they can then load after setup.

You can also roll out an MS Access solution that uses Access Runtime. That doesn't require an MS Office license.

about 3 months ago
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Did the Ignition Key Just Die?

maz2331 Re:I don't like the control it takes away from you (865 comments)

Pushing the button with the fob in the dash and foot off the brake will turn on ignition and not crank the engine. Pressing it a second time will put the car in ACC mode. Pushing it with a foot on the brake starts the engine. At least that is how BMW does it.

about 4 months ago
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"Smart" Gun Seller Gets the Wrong Kind of Online Attention

maz2331 Re:Gun nuts (1374 comments)

Then get 2/3 of Congress and 3/4 of the state legislatures to go along with removing it.

about 4 months ago

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