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NYT: Privacy Concerns For ClassDojo, Other Tracking Apps For Schoolchildren

penix1 Re:most of that info used to be tracked on paper (66 comments)

Each student had old fashioned paper records recording all that stuff: behavioral problems, class results, rewards, etc.

Is it really that different now because it's on a computer?

Yes it is because the paper copy isn't shared with God+his dog unlike this application does. Also, the paper copy is destroyed once the student passes that year unlike this application which stores it forever.

So to answer you directly, some things are better off only in paper if even there.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Planning Office Version To Rival LinkedIn, Google

penix1 Re:Depends on the security needs (91 comments)

It isn't just secrets but any PII. Medical or financial for example. I work in state government and can tell you they have locked down many of these type of sites and track every keystroke and mouse click to include what sites you tried to get to even if it was blocked. It may be that they were fired at the meeting for a previous transgression (not necessarily transgressing at the meeting).

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Dealing With VoIP Fraud/Phishing Scams?

penix1 Re:Level3? (159 comments)

I've got a better solution for both of you...

Put an automated message that says the following...

"If you are calling about a recent scam involving our number, please call Level 3 at..." and give the phone number to Level 3's complaint office. If they don't have a complaint office then simply give the main number. Better yet if you can, forward the call to them via a menu system. Let them deal with the fallout. Maybe they will take the hint.

about two weeks ago
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Comcast Kisses-Up To Obama, Publicly Agrees On Net Neutrality

penix1 Re:Window Dressing. (258 comments)

Obama destroyed healtcare in this country because he was just doing what the Republicans ordered him to do.

Frothing at the mouth aside, I will call you out on this one. Just how is healthcare in this country destroyed by the act? Please be specific.

about two weeks ago
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Comcast Kisses-Up To Obama, Publicly Agrees On Net Neutrality

penix1 Re:Window Dressing. (258 comments)

Forcing me to buy something does not count as "getting it for me".

I would agree with you if and only if the hospital could refuse to treat you when you show up at the emergency room until you pay up front. Because, you see, when you show up and they have to treat you regardless of your ability to pay it raises the cost for all the rest of us who do have insurance.

about two weeks ago
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Comcast Kisses-Up To Obama, Publicly Agrees On Net Neutrality

penix1 Re:Window Dressing. (258 comments)

How can you reason that the ACA was caving in to republicans when none of them voted for it? The reason why we got the crap that we did was to get the moderates of his own party on board, which they almost failed to do anyway (see Nebraska). They never would have agreed to a single-payer system, and this was the best they could do to try to get coverage for everybody.

Where were you when they were drafting the act? The reason we got what we got was the Republicans were given an equal footing at the drafting table. There were 6 Democrats and 6 Republicans drafting it in the false belief that if they had a hand in making it they would support it. The reason it almost failed the Senate was totally Harry Reid's failure to take Mitch McConnell at his word to "make sure that President Obama was a one term president" and use the "nuclear option" to fix the filibuster rule at the start of that session. Even to this day it still hasn't been fixed.

The only reason the Republicans are fighting the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the FULL title of the act) is their fear it will be as popular as Social Security and the fact that President Obama was backing it (at that stage I argue he would have backed anything that had a positive effect on the broken healthcare system we still have).

The insurance companies are against it because it requires 80% of the premiums be spent on healthcare while trying to eliminate the arbitrary denials. The doctors don't like it because it requires them to be more transparent and stop unnecessary tests that only line their pockets. It also cracks down on the waste, fraud and abuse by hospitals. So that is why they are against it.

Meanwhile, millions of Americans now have some form of healthcare that they could never get before.

about two weeks ago
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Dealer-Installed GPS Tracker Leads To Kidnapper's Arrest in Maryland

penix1 Re:Typical!! (271 comments)

The only thing that needs visibility is the antenna. Tap into the car radio antenna and the problem is solved.

The original point of privacy was made and while I agree with that point there is the point that you don't own the car until it is fully paid for. That and the fact that this guy had major credit problems, enough for the loan guarantor to suspect they would have to resort to repossession, they deemed it necessary to track the vehicle. Lastly, my bet is his contract for the loan stipulated that the car was being tracked until the loan was satisfied buried deep in the legalese and removal of the device would constitute breech of contract enacting the repossession clause.

about three weeks ago
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Photon Pair Coupled in Glass Fiber

penix1 Re:Naive optimism in headline (91 comments)

I'm more amazed anyone believes that in our current society strong encryption helps maintain privacy in any way.

I tend to agree with you mostly because it requires both ends to be encrypted to the same level to be of any use. It also requires too many parties have their hands in the security pot to be believable. Everything from the browser to the certifying authority to the end users. That is why encryption truly can be security theater.

about three weeks ago
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Boo! The House Majority PAC Is Watching You

penix1 Re:West Virginia too (468 comments)

As I said, it is recorded, not that it was "public information". And, like I said, they are having trouble with vote buying here so I really don't see them releasing that specific info.Probably a good reason that they got my info all wrong.

about a month ago
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Boo! The House Majority PAC Is Watching You

penix1 West Virginia too (468 comments)

Whether you show up to vote (not whether you actually vote) is recorded. However, given the trouble they are having with vote buying in both WV and KY I doubt they actually release the specific info.

BTW, they both (republican and democrat) got my info wrong because I moved to this district recently.

I consider this an attempt at intimidation and won't bow to it. I would join any lawsuit if they released any list of individuals whether they showed up to vote or not.

about a month ago
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Building All the Major Open-Source Web Browsers

penix1 Re:I run Gentoo (106 comments)

I too use Gentoo and have since 2003. I started using it because it was the only one that had all my hardware working "out of the box" so to speak. Besides, it is a really good way to learn Linux under the hood.

Having said that, you can get some really messed up crap especially if you setup your use flags or compiler options wrong. What I do hate about Gentoo is the seemingly random masking of packages that knocks out other packages that are working just fine. Yes, you can unmask them but that is a PITA. So care needs to be taken when updating. Don't do it willy nilly neigh...

about a month ago
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Florida Supreme Court: Police Can't Grab Cell Tower Data Without a Warrant

penix1 Re:anonymously sourced evidence? (114 comments)

No, it truly is easy if there is probable cause.

This is from: http://legal-dictionary.thefre...

Probable cause is not equal to absolute certainty. That is, a police officer does not have to be absolutely certain that criminal activity is taking place to perform a search or make an arrest. Probable cause can exist even when there is some doubt as to the person's guilt. Courts take care to review the actions of police in the context of everyday life, Balancing the interests of law enforcement against the interests of personal liberty in determining whether probable cause existed for a search or arrest.

If they are not planning to arrest someone, then why the warrantless search? The point is, if the police can articulate their suspicions clearly enough with a modicum of evidence, they get the warrant.

about a month ago
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Florida Supreme Court: Police Can't Grab Cell Tower Data Without a Warrant

penix1 Re:anonymously sourced evidence? (114 comments)

The question should be what is so fucking hard about getting a warrant? They are handed out like candy these days so what is so hard about getting one?

about a month ago
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NSA CTO Patrick Dowd Moonlighting For Private Security Firm

penix1 Re: Conflict of interest is just what they do (83 comments)

What would or should be illegal about it though?

He is using government property for private gain. Namely his access to classified information. Information that will allow him to demand a higher salary that he wouldn't have without that inside access. Also, we have no idea YET if this private company has any government contracts with the NSA since that info would also be classified. Watch for this tidbit to come out much later.

about a month ago
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How Spurious Wikipedia Edits Can Attach a Name To a Scandal, 35 Years On

penix1 Re:Research (165 comments)

I do think the bias in reporting used to be less overt than today, but I think it's always been there to some extent. Human nature doesn't change so easily.

There is a big difference between bias and pure opinion. Today opinion is quite often reported as fact. It is the difference between what is reported (bias) and how it is reported (opinion).

The fairness doctrine perhaps made sense in a day when our information choices were limited (I'd still argue against it in principle, as I think it stomps all over the first amendment).

I am having difficulty understanding how giving opposing views on an issue or news item in any way hinders free speech. If anything it enhances it giving the intended audience a broader understanding of an issue. Without it echo chambers such as Fox News and MSNBC exist in a vacuum polarizing even further their respective audience.

I'm not quite old enough to remember the Vietnam and Watergate years, but I certainly do remember the pre-internet media days. For all it's faults, I'll take today's information age any day, even if the mass media has fallen quite a bit in stature and relevance. What we've gained, IMO, more than makes up for it.

I have no problem with the Internet when it is used properly. But as is often the case, too much trust is placed in what is on the net and these days critical thinking skills isn't in great supply. The Internet has caused traditional media to compete with something they can't compete with. Namely instant content creation. This story is just one example of an error on the net going unrecognized by both professional and lay observers. That is the pitfall of the open Internet. Do I want it to change or to go back to a disconnected world? That answer would be a resounding no. But I wish people would take what is on it with a grain of salt and realize that it isn't definitive.

about a month and a half ago
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Experts Decry Randomized Ebola Treatment Trials As Unethical, Impractical

penix1 Re:Our PC society will be our demise! (193 comments)

It teaches hate and violence, but point that out and people call you racist (as if there was some kind of Muslim race) and froth at the mouth.

All religions teach hate and violence of some form or other. Organized religion itself is nothing more than political control of a given populace. The whole concept of "hell" is using the threat of violence to control behavior. The point is, most, if not all, religions have their violent tendencies.

about a month and a half ago
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How Spurious Wikipedia Edits Can Attach a Name To a Scandal, 35 Years On

penix1 Re:Research (165 comments)

to find that the audience prefers misinfotainment over news. They demand entertainment over learning. Illusion over reality.

I am old enough to remember a day when the news was actually just that... News.... No opinion mixed in. Just the facts. When opinion was offered, usually after the real news, it was labeled as such.

Then media consolidation happened, the fairness doctrine was tossed and newsrooms nationwide were expected to turn a profit. It is that, not the audience, that caused the decline of in-depth reporting. It is expensive to actually check all the facts in a story. It takes time, money and more importantly sources willing to put the story out. In trying to compete with the Internet, broadcast TV and newspapers nationwide have a tough time beating the net to "the scoop". Lastly, corporations (read "advertisers") are the real ones dictating what the audience sees. You will never see a story about an advertiser because that would be biting the hand that feeds them.

I argue the last in-depth reporting really only happened when the Vietnam war brought the horrors of war to people's living room and the Watergate scandal opened people's eyes to government corruption. Since then, the government learned the lesson and wiped out all trace of regulation of what is supposed to be the watchdog of government itself.

about a month and a half ago
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DoJ: Law Enforcement Can Impersonate People On Facebook

penix1 Re:Yet again government agency abuses privacy (191 comments)

Additionally, I don't think any of the major social media companies allow "non-real name" accounts. Didn't Facebook recently apologize to Drag Queens because of that policy. If the government sets up an account to impersonate someone else, then they have just violated many companies' terms of service.

How? They are using a real name... Just not their real name.

about 1 month ago
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Former Department of Defense Chief Expects "30 Year War"

penix1 Re:Can't trust the Democratic leadership ... (425 comments)

See what you just did? You went from comparing apples to oranges to comparing apples to apples. Tax percentage per year vs GDP (a yearly measurement) is better than the meaningless mufti-century debt to yearly GDP. Add up the GDP in the history of America and compare that to the debt and you would be comparing apples to apples again. Or, compare the debt incurred this year to GDP and again be in balance. Either way, I disagree with your conclusion since the government "staying out" of the economy lead to the great depression being far deeper than it needed to be under Herbert Hoover.

http://www.history.com/topics/...

Hoover undertook various measures designed to stimulate the economy, and a few of the programs he introduced became key components of later relief efforts. However, Hoover's response to the crisis was constrained by his conservative political philosophy. He believed in a limited role for government and worried that excessive federal intervention posed a threat to capitalism and individualism. He felt that assistance should be handled on a local, voluntary basis. Accordingly, Hoover vetoed several bills that would have provided direct relief to struggling Americans. "Prosperity cannot be restored by raids upon the public Treasury," he explained in his 1930 State of the Union address.

about 2 months ago
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Former Department of Defense Chief Expects "30 Year War"

penix1 Re:Can't trust the Democratic leadership ... (425 comments)

If you study the debt numbers vs GDP...

That is a meaningless comparison. Here is why:

http://mythfighter.com/2009/11...

To quote his baseball analogy:

What would you say if I told you the total number of hits the Chicago Cubs made in 2008 is 47% of the total number of runs the Cubs have scored in all of their 100+ year history? You might well say, "Huh? What does one thing have to do with the other? One is hits; the other is runs. One is 100+ years; the other is one year. It's classic apples vs oranges." And you would be right.

Federal "debt" is the net amount of outstanding T-securities created in the history of America. The GDP is the total dollar value of goods and services creating this year. The two are unrelated. The federal government does not use GDP to service its debt. In fact, federal debt service stimulates the economy, so more debt is stimulative.

about 2 months ago

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