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North Korea Opens .kp Sites On the Internet

piemcfly Re:Information-starved masses won't see the intern (175 comments)

Radios are quite normal in North Korea. They are sealed to specific ranges and checked every, I think, 3 months, to prevent people from listening to foreign media.
TV's are also prominent amongst the higher classes of the country. South Korean soap operas are apparently quite popular to watch illegally on imported DVD'

more than 4 years ago

Hack Exposes Pirate Bay User Data

piemcfly Nationalism, fuck yeah? (156 comments)

I like how *random hacker group X* is not accountable to anybody.
It offers possibilities for good and bad... all depending on the poltiical agenda of said group

Which only makes it even more incredibly sad that so many hacker groups go for a ridiculous Nationalist-with-a-big-N route.

Chinese, Iranian, Turkish, American, Argentinian, Chilean... fucling pathetic for a subculture that generally prides itself on non-alliance and independence.

more than 4 years ago

Google's New Approach For China Is To Serve From Hong Kong

piemcfly Re:Did I miss something? (295 comments)

Another interpretation could be that this move to hong kong allows the Chinese government to save face. They've been very public about their issues with google's operation in mainland China, while google is far from the biggest player in the market.
The idea of the censorship is not just to totally block access to certain information. Reminding people where the line is drawn (no matter how vaguely) by public shows of power is just as important. Chinese censorship, afaik, is more concerned with the broadcasting side of communication than with the receiving end. It's hard to prevent people from looking for information (see ToR / proxies etc).

It's easier to go after the source ('dissidents') and scare people into not spreading information. Going after google in the state newspaper and on tv etc. is also a way of communicating to the chinese people that 'our rules are still in place'.

Moving to Hong Kong might allow google to continue their service to China, while at the same time the Chinese government can say that it 'won' the discussion and reach its goal of reminding it's public (the Chinese population) about its position on freedom of information / opinion.

If it works out that way it's a pretty smart business move from google, allowing for a way out of the zero-sum game they were in.

more than 4 years ago

Project M Could Send Every Scientist To the Moon, By Proxy

piemcfly Science? (150 comments)

Science?! Screw science! You mean sports!

Become Lunar Boxing Heavy Weight Champion by punching an opponent into orbit!


more than 4 years ago

New Bounds On the Higgs Boson Mass

piemcfly Aw shucks... (173 comments)

So much for Europe being the new frontier for science.

Oh well, I suppose we can always turn the LHC into an expensive underground parking for the Genevans...
500 park jobs per day at a cheap 10dollars an hour... with luck we'll have our money back somewhere around the year 7010...

more than 4 years ago

IE Flaw Gives Hackers Access To User Files

piemcfly Re:WHY THE FUCK DO PEOPLE STILL USE IE? (259 comments)


Because many online / network services won't work outside of IE.
At one of my temp jobs I had to work with a hotel management service that only ran on MS IE (v5, no less)... I had a good laugh when IE got fuxed up by some wonderful bonzibuddy toolbar variant thingy because one of my colleagues had managed to click one too many 'yes' buttons in popup windows.
Then I had to do all the administration by hand and couldn't access the billing system and didn't laugh anymore.
Of course, the day after it was fixed, somebody had installed the google toolbar as if nothing had ever happened. /fail

more than 4 years ago

The DIY $10 Prepaid Cellphone Remote Car Starter

piemcfly Vaguely related annecdote... (454 comments)

My grandmother, who was going slightly deaf, recently had a very loud radio triggered beeper installed that went off everytime somebody rang the doorbell.
Turned out it worked on the same frequency as the neighbors DIY garage door system:

If he opened his garage, her alarm started ringing.
If somebody rang her doorbell, the neighbors garage door opened.

I changed the frequency for her, but I think I should have explored the pranking possibilities of that set up a bit more.

about 5 years ago

SAS Named Best Company To Work For In 2010

piemcfly Re:This is funny if you're in the UK (183 comments)

Seeing how computer-SAS wins partly because of their great food perks, I'm fairly certain army-SAS wouldn't be high on the list.
Some friends of mine are in the (dutch) army, one often in liaison functions, and try tasting foreign MRE's every chance they get.

They tell me British MRE's were some of the worst they ever tried, apart form some ex-soviet countries (pig fat? yum?). Not sure if the SAS ones are better, but I would suspect not.
Japanese and Korean rations are aparantly pretty good.

about 5 years ago

Grigory Perelman and the Poincare Conjecture

piemcfly Re:Knows as much about ethics as he does mathemati (241 comments)

He is refusing the prizes as a protest against the lack of ethics in the mathematical community. In his mind he believes this demonstrates how he is totally committed to mathematics, and that only.

This is also why I skipped math classes in high school.
I could have gotten straight A's... but you know, ethics, man.

more than 5 years ago

Hackers Counter Microsoft COFEE With Some DECAF

piemcfly DECAF? (154 comments)

I can't wait for the 'LATTE MOCHA' fork.

more than 5 years ago

Building Left 4 Dead Maps With Google Sketchup

piemcfly Re:Oh this is going to be fun. (44 comments)

Way back when, my highschool actively sponsored a Quake2 tournament in the computer lab during a competitive sports week, in which the maps were all based on the school and some models were based on teachers.

It was fun.

more than 5 years ago

Somali Pirates Open Up a "Stock Exchange"

piemcfly Re:Paging Bernie Madoff Clients... (666 comments)

The costs of arming every ship to such a degree that it can protect itself from heavily armed pirates is also pretty high. There's a gazillion ships out there, and you don't know which one they'll hit. The average sailor is also not trained (and probably unwilling) to go into a firefight.

Regular arms are also not a good sollution to the problem. The pirates of course show up unannounced, get on board before anybody can even get their guns out, and take the crew hostage. Guns can't counter that threat effectively.

It might also set off an arms race. Ships arm themselves -> pirates get bigger guns. Nobody wants that.

more than 5 years ago

Plug vs. Plug — Which Nation's Socket Is Best?

piemcfly Re:US vs UK... (1174 comments)

3 different plug types that don't fit in every type?

What 'the Netherlands' are you living in? In fact, what Europe have you been living in? I understand British people have a hard time understanding Europe, what with their Europhobia and gereral 'island' mindset... but really? Mistaking standardized two-prong plugs for something else?

I've never encountered any other plug than the standardized "Schuko" "Type F" plugs in the Netherlands. You know, the type with two prongs (and sometimes a seperate grounding), which means you can use grounded or ungrounded plugs ons both grounded and ungrounded outlets.... you know,the types that accept any europlug?

Perhaps you've been using 80s-era belgian and french plugs here? Or you've been buying imported electronics?

more than 5 years ago

Exoskeletons For Rent In Japan

piemcfly Re:Oh yeah! (226 comments)

Ack.That was me. Hate it when I forget to log in =___=

more than 5 years ago

Microsoft Hardware Demos Pressure-Sensitive Keyboard

piemcfly Re:Just use it like a game controller. (212 comments)

How about a script that senses when somebody is drunk typing? Now THAT would be hella useful to lots of people, haha.

more than 5 years ago

Wells Fargo Bank Sues Itself

piemcfly Tax deductable? (445 comments)

This seems like a great way of laundering money...

1 - Sue yourself over some bullshit
2 - Pay outlandish fees to lawyer who's in on the deal (on both sides, of course, can't wait for him to object to himself in court)
3 - Make court battle drag on with continuously unearthed 'new evidence'
4 - Keep paying outlandish fees
5 - Settle case with yourself (including ridiculous settlement fee)
6 - Profit!

Or do even better: sue yourself over an issue that allows for tax deduction.
There are probably some details I'm overlooking here, but with some legal loopholery I'm sure this can work.

more than 5 years ago

Man Attacked In Ohio For Providing Iran Proxies

piemcfly Re:Waiting for it... (467 comments)

It is definitely great to see how so many ordinary people are aiding in this effort. It's pretty amazing to see how a wide variety of individuals are coming together to provide other people with the means to create a sense of information freedom. People sometimes complain about the way in which people are disinterested in their power as democratic civilians... but this whole situation proves the opposite. So many people are providing help or at least vocal support to what's happening in Iran, and most of it is utterly disconnected from governmental systems. Truly a civil society affair. Political scholars interested in discourse analysis and media studies are jumping up and down right now.

more than 5 years ago

China's First Mars Probe Ready To Launch

piemcfly Personally... (67 comments)

I can't wait for the Chinese to start probing Uranus.


more than 5 years ago



Gates Puts Feynman Lectures Online

piemcfly piemcfly writes  |  more than 5 years ago

piemcfly (1232770) writes "NY Times writes that Bill Gates has purchased the rights to videos of seven lectures that Dr. Feynman gave at Cornell University called "The Character of Physical Law," in an effort to make them broadly available via the Internet.

Microsoft Research announced on Wednesday that Mr. Gates, who purchased the rights to the videos privately from the Feynman estate, BBC and from Cornell University, in cooperation with Curtis Wong, a Microsoft researcher, has created a Web site, called Tuva, that is intended to enhance the videos by annotating them with related digital content."

Link to Original Source

Physicist admits: sent secret space data to China

piemcfly piemcfly writes  |  more than 6 years ago

piemcfly (1232770) writes "Chinese-born physicist Shu Quan-Sheng Monday pleaded guilty before a US court to violating the Arms Export Control Act by illegally exporting American military space know-how to China.

The 68 year-old naturalized US citizen, pictured here on his company profile, admitted handing over the design of fueling systems between 2003 and 2007.

Also, in 2003 he illegally exported a document with the impossibly long name of "Commercial Information, Technical Proposal and Budgetary Officer — Design, Supply, Engineering, Fabrication, Testing & Commissioning of 100m3 Liquid Hydrogen Tank and Various Special Cryogenic Pumps, Valves, Filters and Instruments".
This contained the design of liquid hydrogen tanks for space launch vehicles. He also admitted to a third charge of bribing Chinese officials to the tune of some 189,300 dollars for a French space technology firm.

See here for the FBI press release."

Link to Original Source

China will now 'tolerate' scientific failures

piemcfly piemcfly writes  |  more than 6 years ago

piemcfly (1232770) writes "Anybody that has seen a few old james bond movies knows the mandatory scene where the Evil Genius kills one of his henchmen, preferably a Mad Scientist, for failing a mission. It seems that the Evil Genius in charge of science policy for the chinese government has now decided to change its failure policies (reuters.com):

China will tolerate experiment failures by its scientists to ease pressure, encourage innovation and cut the chances of fraud, a top official said on Thursday. [...] [Minister of Science and Technology] Wan cited the Law on Science and Technology Progress that was revised in December to allow scientists to report failures freely without losing face or affecting future funding. The amended law will take effect in July.

A bright day for aspiring mad scientists in the peoples republic, this surely is?"

Link to Original Source

US to shoot down disabled satellite

piemcfly piemcfly writes  |  more than 6 years ago

piemcfly (1232770) writes "
WASHINGTON (Reuters) — The Pentagon plans to shoot down a disabled U.S. spy satellite before it enters the atmosphere to prevent a potentially deadly leak of toxic gas from the vehicle's fuel tank, officials said on Thursday. President George W. Bush decided to have the Navy shoot the 5,000-pound (2,270 kg) minivan-sized satellite with a modified tactical missile, after security advisers suggested its re-entry could lead to a loss of life. U.S. officials said they were not trying to protect classified information on the satellite or to demonstrate their capabilities to China, which downed one of its own satellites with a missile last year, drawing criticism from Washington. Some experts disagreed and questioned the risks associated with shooting down the satellite.
Interestingly, the satellite, which was launched little more than a year ago, apparently never worked:

The satellite has been out of touch since shortly after reaching its low-Earth orbit. Since the satellite never became operational, it has toxic rocket fuel on board that would have been used to maneuver the satellite in space.
More here: http://www.reuters.com/article/topNews/idUSN1447206620080215"

Link to Original Source


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