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The CIA Does Las Vegas

s.petry Re:Ridiculous (70 comments)

There is not a press. What is this, communism, comrade?

You have not paid any attention to what's been happening with media in the US have you? Broadcast and Print media is all primarily owned by the same people. If talking points are not followed journalists are fired. I have no idea how you missed the leaks about the New York Post, CNN, FOX, and *NBC, and hell even the AP. A few of these leaks were even mentioned in some places (though not covered as stories or discussed beyond the mention). Each outlet is controlling output and following administration provided talking points. Having to have stories approved by 3 letter government agencies before running them, and blacking out content that could harm the administration provided talking points.

It's not "communism", that's a false paradigm. Seems like you also missed the reports that the US has turned into a fascist oligarch by a couple large universities. Having a controlled media is surely a sign of a society that is not free, but communism is not the only form of government that is "not free".

1 hour ago

The CIA Does Las Vegas

s.petry Re:We need a better "press" 4 collective sensemaki (70 comments)

I don't agree that the only way to fix the issue is by the communist path. You don't need a complete re-distribution to fix things, you only need to dismantle a very small number of monopolies (including financial monopolies).

Start with media, and break up the monopoly. Having 90% of all media owned by 4 people is why we lack rational discussion of issues and have a public that knows more about a celebrity than a political decision that could impact their lives for the rest of their lives. Deregulation broke this.

Financially, our woes are not due to the 1% but rather the .01%. Lock this down and redistribute their wealth and every poor person in the country would be set for life. Bill Gates (easy yet deserving target) does not need 50 billion dollars. Simply knocking him down to 1 billion would return enough money to purchase 490,000 people houses valued at 100,000, and Mr. Gates would still be rich. Now imagine how many people could own a home and be out of poverty if you corrected all of the .01% (There are at least a few with way more wealth than him). Deregulation broke this.

Banks need to be broken up and regulations put back in place to ensure that a bank can not operate in more than one state. Too big to fail should not exist, and deregulation broke this.

Notice that deregulation broke each of these things, all starting around the 1970s. As more and more deregulation occurred, more and more corruption has happened.

These three things are not the only things that need to be done, but each is a valid starting point. It should also be obvious that since deregulation caused failures, it does not require communism to "fix" things. Enforced regulation is all that's required.

1 hour ago

Peter Hoddie Talks About His Internet of Things Construction Kit (Video)

s.petry Either.. (51 comments)

Either a sock puppet account trying to make sure people are getting messages about how "cool" the concept is. Or. Someone nerd raging and believing everything technology is cool. Or Finally. The person chose an offensive vocabulary to express their thoughts.

I'll lean toward the last thing, mixed with the middle.

I will state that the rating of "Troll" is wrong also, and it agrees with my thoughts (though I'd have expressed them differently). If "Fuck the CIA" can get modded insightful (in a thread yesterday), so can this.

11 hours ago

UK Government Report Recommends Ending Online Anonymity

s.petry Re:Have government go first. (253 comments)

Could you please explain what govement employee financial records and private lives have to do with freedom of speech? It doesn't.

When they are trying to demand access to everyone else' private lives, it sure as hell does. You are going to have to do better than an elementary fallacy to sway people away from hsthompson69's point.

12 hours ago

HP Gives OpenVMS New Life and Path To X86 Port

s.petry Re: Not in visable uses... (126 comments)

You also recycled the brain cells denoting the difference between "grant it" and "granted"....

Sorry, I could not resist...

13 hours ago

Peter Hoddie Talks About His Internet of Things Construction Kit (Video)

s.petry Bullshit! (51 comments)

TV, Phones, and Radio are not inherently bad. People originally saw broadcast media as a way of sharing knowledge. A voice with further range.

That said, just like speaking it also has the potential to be misused and harm the public. I'll argue that it has been used for exactly that purpose for decades as well, with the last couple of decades reaching an absurd level of hypnotizing the public and keeping them away from reality.

As we see with other forms of broadcast, the "Internet" has also been abused for the same purposes. You only need to look into why Wikimedia started blocking congressional IPs from anonymous edits to know that it's not just "conspiracy wackos" trying to mislead people. It should also be obvious that this media format has been used for more nefarious purposes than simply misleading or providing false information. Once again, you can point to government agencies as the largest culprits.

Given what we know about people abusing media and technology, why the hell would you want your toaster and fridge connected to the internet? In nearly every case, the risk drastically outweighs any potential benefit of having the device internet accessible in my opinion. Not only do you have to worry about an insurance company looking at your fridge and increasing your rates because you have too many high carb foods (which is on track to be 100% government controlled), but you also have to worry about a hacker turning up the temperature so your food spoils. Even better, automatically ordering food for you when that gets plugged in (already being touted as why you should have a fridge on the internet), because you can probably afford $68,000.00 worth of steak right?

Nobody cares what you do, but at least stop bullshitting people and using fallacy to make yourself look better than someone who has weighed the risks and does not want this type of technology invading their home.

Currently there is nothing from stopping you from rigging up your house and appliances in numerous fashions to have all your "stuff" shared on the internet. Do it up, just don't bitch when your "stuff" gets destroyed or stolen. More importantly, stop trying to imply it's a great idea and everyone should do it.

13 hours ago

Chinese Government Probes Microsoft For Breaches of Monopoly Law

s.petry Re:So China is going to do (105 comments)

Which trial are you referring to exactly? As I stated, MS was found guilty numerous times ant there were several separate cases tried under Bush which were all successful. The first BIG trial was under Clinton, and Bush blocked (technically heavily influenced) more Federal trials.


35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

s.petry Re:So! The game is rigged! (561 comments)

While I agree this is possible, I will also submit that it's only a partial truth because not all banks and credit cards are the same. Many credit card companies will provide negative scoring for paying off a debt completely every month. I have had 2 credit cards cancelled for exactly that reason (years apart mind you, not simultaneous). The reason I got the cards was for the same reason you claimed worked, to build a score by making small purchases and paying it off each month. Except that credit card companies can cancel your cards for any reason, and in my case did after a few months of purchasing small goods and paying off the balance every month.

American Express has worked this way for as long as they have been in business, but you pay an annual fee to have the card so it's still not "free" and you are not being paid to have the card.

As the old saying goes, if something appears too good to be true it probably is. That said, I'd be interested in looking at your actual monthly statements to see how much you actually pay for credit card use. Call me cynical, but nobody rides for free. Perhaps if your "company" is contributing more, you would appear to pay less, etc...

I will grant you that big banks are worse than credit unions, and perhaps your credit cards are both through your credit union. Doubtful that you would get frequent flier miles that way, but surely possible.


Chinese Government Probes Microsoft For Breaches of Monopoly Law

s.petry Re:So China is going to do (105 comments)

The DOJ did not fail to convict Microsoft of being an illegal monopoly, they failed to _PUNISH_ them after they were found guilty. Microsoft paid lobbyists to convince congress that breaking them apart (as was done with AT&T) would cause further economic collapse. Yeah yeah, so much for the separation of powers...

It was not just the DOJ that failed to punish MS. Several states had similar successful trials where MS was found guilty, and the payout from MS was "free MS products for Education and Government" for N years ( in some cases 5 years ). I wrote numerous articles and papers back then explaining how this was not a punishment, but obviously a method of further entrenching their monopoly.


Journalist Sues NSA For Keeping Keith Alexander's Financial History Secret

s.petry Re:Bad summary of two separate issues (179 comments)

Nope, I did not forget. I do not state nor do I imply that other politicians are innocent of wrong doing. I simply gave a starting point for starting to deal with the corruption.


Jesse Jackson: Tech Diversity Is Next Civil Rights Step

s.petry What? (495 comments)

Jackson and Sharpton both have livelihoods that depend on race issues. Both are known for race baiting, and have made careers doing just that. This is why even when no racial issues exist, they fabricate information to make them exist. These are not the only two that manipulate discrimination issues for cash. We saw recently that the NAACP will give bigots a lifetime achievement award, if the bigot gives enough money to the NAACP.

That statement should not imply that real issues of discrimination do not exist, but rather that real issues of discrimination are diminished because of these types of people.

It's not a shakedown for money, because that would only let you cash a check once. He wants constant racial issues, and instigates them when ever possible.


The Problems With Drug Testing

s.petry What? (161 comments)

You do realize that it takes money to sue someone correct? Well, technically you could file yourself but you will quickly lose because a laymen is not going to understand the required procedures even assuming they could figure out the correct paperwork to file to get the case started.

Very few lawyers work pro bono. If any risk at all existed in the case (including to their reputation) lawyers can and often do refuse cases.

No, it's not practical for a homeless person to sue anyone. In a criminal case a lawyer must be provided if the person can not afford one, but that is not true with civil cases.

2 days ago

Journalist Sues NSA For Keeping Keith Alexander's Financial History Secret

s.petry Bad summary of two separate issues (179 comments)

Why the summary munged Alexander's laughable salary request and a lawsuit by a journalist is a bit baffling.

First issue, the lawsuit. The NSA refused to provide under Federal Law. It should not come as a surprise to anyone that this agency is ignoring (or at least attempting to ignore) Federal Law. The right answer is to disband the NSA and hand SIGINT over to the Military which tends to follow the US Constitution a bit more closely. While we are disbanding things, we should also revamp the CIA, FBI, DHS, and TSA removing most of their powers and executives that also ignore the law.

Second issue is that Alexander thinks he's brilliant enough to make a million a month telling people what most IT Security professionals can do for a much better rate. I'd do better than he does at securing a company, and I'll do it for much less. In fact I can think of a few dozen people I'd recommend for much less, and for a million a month I'd have a full staff doing audits _and_ consulting. You don't need to be a former General to be intelligent about security, you need knowledge.

In other words, if Alexander can get a million a month for consulting it sure as hell is not for security. It would be for cronyism.

2 days ago

35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

s.petry Re:So! The game is rigged! (561 comments)

Try being working or lower middle class and doing the same thing. When you can only save a few hundred a month for a house due to rent costing over 1.5 times a typical mortgage payment

I moved out of poverty and into the upper middle class over time. There is no silver spoon or handouts for the overwhelming majority of people that move out of poverty to a better income.

Being debt free gives me more cash than a person that has lots of debt. Their money goes to interest payments, mine stays in the bank. It's not being "rich", it's being debt free.

2 days ago

35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

s.petry Re:So! The game is rigged! (561 comments)

Not a fan of banks, but you are welcome to start your own bank.

You think a regulator would approve you if you didn't play the game? Come now, you know better.

2 days ago

35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

s.petry Re:So! The game is rigged! (561 comments)

There is nothing wrong with using credit and loans as long as they are used responsibly.

Funny that you believe you should have to pay a bank money, just for the "privilege" of spending money. You already earned your pay, but you think you should pay a bank so that you can spend it? This is exactly what I was referring to about people not understanding the scam.

2 days ago

35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

s.petry Re:So! The game is rigged! (561 comments)

1. A credit history. That's not necessarily debt, it is a history of handling small debts that you've paid off.

This is what I said. If you pay your phone bill every month, you don't get extra points. If you pay your phone bill with a credit card, you will get extra points IF and only IF you pay just the minimum payment (mostly interest to prolong your debt). If you pay it off in full, you may receive negative points. If you don't pay your bill on time you can be reported for negative points as well. Doing the right thing and paying on time the full amount to the company will not help your credit.

Your item 2 has a hell of a lot to do with item 1. If people want you indebted longer, they will target you for additional debt. Banks can somehow take back any property you gained, get insurance money for losses, and receive handouts from the Government for doing just that.

Nobody can force you to go into debt.

True. At the same time if a bank forces you to have a particular credit score to get a loan (as most do) the only way to get the credit score is to live in constant debt paying interest payments. Go ahead and try buying a house with a low credit score. Even if you don't need to be in debt people use credit cards for this exact reason. Hence, why I claim it's a scam.

2 days ago

35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

s.petry So! The game is rigged! (561 comments)

The whole point of a "credit score" is horribly broken. In order to get approved for debt, you must have debt. If you have money in the bank and no monthly debt payments you have a reduced score. It's a SCAM! A scheme to make sure that you are constantly in debt, and yet it's perfectly legal. Living in debt constantly costs you money, and for what? So that you can have more debt? Wow!

The fact that people don't get this, or simply don't care, is very telling.

Personally I have almost no debt, just my car payment. I don't have a lot of debt so have a laughably low credit score. If I don't have cash I can wait to buy something. Actually since I manage my personal finances very well purchasing something I want is never an issue.

2 days ago

The Psychology of Phishing

s.petry Re:well (128 comments)

And I already stated in my first reply that IMHO your success has little to do with the training and a lot to do with the continuous follow-ups you do. Also with an environment that is not business-focussed.

This does not match what you state later, which is in essence claims that all 3,000 people in your company need in depth knowledge of your security policy. That is, plainly, nonsense.

Corporate "Security Awareness Training" has to address the needs of _many_, and not everyone needs that level of detail. In fact very few do, and a small percentage could even understand them. Which could explain your repeated claims of bad experiences.

Jane and John, the new accountants, need to know what Phishing is, not what your encryption policy for tape back up is. You previously complained that for you it was redundant so "stupid" (your words). Stop moving the goal post.

What I mean is that we replace actual security with trainings and think it's a solution.

Security awareness training is not a replacement for security. If a Company believes it does, this matches what I stated repeatedly about a broken culture. Not a Security or Training deficiency.

Sure I have my own view and experiences and my attitude is the result of what I've seen and what I think about it. Also the result of knowing a lot of people in the IT consulting business privately, where they tell you what they really think.

I know plenty that underscore how bad corporate cultures are and can be. Any Corporate level trainer will tell you the same thing. You have to train everyone in the basics. After they have a grasp of basics, reminders and nudges from audits work. A reminder about phishing attacks will be ignored by people that don't know what phishing is or how it works. Reminders to follow the password policy will be ignored by people that don't know the policy.

Finally, as stated previously, there are plenty of people that contribute to poor culture. The guys that talk smack about the training because they know it all are a huge issue. You have to build a culture of security if you want to be secure. That will never happen with a crew of sexual intellects (F'king know it all's) discouraging knowledge sharing and personal growth.

3 days ago

FBI Studied How Much Drones Impact Your Privacy -- Then Marked It Secret

s.petry Wait a second (139 comments)

You should really qualify "The Press" in these types of statements. The Press could be ABC, NBC, CBS, BBC, and many more who today claimed an 82 year old man shot a pregnant woman as a headline, when the person was both not pregnant and also committing armed robbery for at least the 2nd time against the same 82 year old man who was beaten as well as robbed. The Press could be the same crew that edited audio to make it look like a guy on neighborhood watch simply claimed to the Police that he was following a Black guy where the full audio shows he is responding to a 9/11 operator asking what race he believes the suspect was. The same media claimed that that guy was White when he's Hispanic, and portrayed the victim in a 7 year old picture to make it appear like the guy shot a little kid instead of a 6'1" nearly legal adult. All to sway public opinion (that one was for numerous purposes). The same media that interrupted a Congresswoman discussing the NSA for "breaking news" that Justin Beiber was arrested, and ensured that a twerk skank received more air time than dialogue about numerous political issues.

The media we normally see and hear IS on the same team as the government, make no mistake.

As such, I continuously wonder if there were just as many secrets before, but it's just faster to find out about their existence nowadays

To some extent I agree that this, but up until 20 years ago we had some real journalism. Nation wide every station lost their "investigative reporters" within the same couple years, and that was the end of any real journalism with any of the 3 letter media outlets.

With rare exceptions today, the only thing that get air time is propaganda.

about a week ago



Slashdot Beta Woes

s.petry s.petry writes  |  about 6 months ago

s.petry (762400) writes "What is a Slashdot and why the Beta might destroy it?

Slashdot has been around, well, a very long time. Longer than any of it's competators, but not as long as IIRC. Slashdot was a very much one of the first true social media web sites.

On Slashdot, you could create a handle or ID. Something personal, but not too personal, unless you wanted it to be. But it was not required either. We know each other by our handles, we have watched each other grow as people. We may have even taken pot shots at each other in threads. Unless of course you are anonymous, but often we can guess who that really is.

One of Slashdot's first motto's was "News for Nerds" that Matters. I have no idea when that was removed. I have not always scoured the boards here daily, life can get too busy for that. That excuses my ignorance in a way. I guess someone thought it politically incorrect, but most of us "Nerds" enjoyed it. We are proud of who we are, and what we know. Often we use that pride and knowledge to make someone else look bad. That is how we get our digs in, and we enjoy that part of us too. We don't punch people, we belittle them. It's who we are!

What made Slashdot unique were a few things. What you will note here is "who" has been responsible for the success of Slashdot. Hint, it has never been a just the company taking care of the servers and software.

— First, the user base submitted stories that "they" thought mattered. It was not a corporate feed. Sure, stories were submitted about companies. The latest break through from AMD and Intel, various stories regarding the graphic card wars, my compiler is better than your compiler, and yes your scripting language stinks! Microsoft IIS has brought us all a few laughs and lots of flame wars to boot. Still, we not only read about the products but get to my second point.

— User comments. This is the primary why we have been coming here for as long as we have, many of us for decades. We provide alternative opinions or back what was given in the article. This aspect not only makes the "News" interesting, but often leads to other news and information sharing. It's not always positive, but this is the nature of allowing commentary. It also brings out the third point.

— Moderation. Moderation has been done by the community for a very long time. It took lots of trial and error to get a working system. As with any public system it's imperfect, but it's been successful. People can choose to view poorly modded comments, but don't have to. As with posting anonymous versus with our own handle it's an option that allows us to personalize the way we see and read what's on the site. And as a reward for submitting something worth reading, you might get a mod point of your own to use as a reward for someone else.

Why we dislike Beta and what is being pushed, and why this will result in the end of an era if it becomes forced on the community.

1. Bulky graphics. We get that Dice and Slashdot need revenue. I have Karma good enough to disable advertisements, but have never kept this setting on. I realize that Slashdot/Dice make money with this. That said, the ads sit away from my news and out of the way. I can get there if I want it (but nobody has ever gotten a penny from me clicking an ad... nobody!), but it's not forced into my face or news feed.

2. Low text area. I like having enough on my screen to keep me busy without constant scrolling. Slashdot currently has the correct ratio of text to screen. This ratio has never been complained about, yet Beta reduces the usable text area by at least 1/2 and no option for changing the behavior. I hate reading Slashdot on mobile devices because I can't stand scrolling constantly.

3. JavaScript. We all know the risks of JS, and many of us disable it. We also have an option of reading in Lync or non-standard browsers that many of us toy with for both personal and professional reasons. This flexibility is gone in Beta, and we are forced to allow JS to run. If you don't know the risks of allowing JS to run, you probably don't read much on Slashdot. Those that allow JS do so accepting the risk (which is admittedly low on a well known site).

4. Ordering/Sorting/Referencing. Each entry currently gets tagged with a unique thread ID. This allows linking to the exact post in a thread, not just the top of the thread. In Beta this is gone. It could be that the site decided to simply hide the post ID or it was removed. Either way, going to specific posts is something that is used very commonly by the community.

5. Eye candy. Most of us are not here for "eye candy" and many have allergic reactions to eye candy. Slashdot has a good mix currently. It's not as simple as the site starting with a r-e-d-i-t, which is good. That site has a reputation that keeps many of us away, and their format matches my attitude of them (s-i-m-p-l-e-t-o-n). At the same time, it's not like watching some other "news" sites with so much scrolling crap I can't read an article without getting a headache. The wasted space in beta for big bulky borders, sure smells like eye candy. Nothing buzzes or scrolls yet, but we can sense what's coming in a patch later.

The thing is, the community cares about Slashdot. We come here because we care. We submit stories because of that, we vote because of that, we moderate because of that, and we comment because of that. At the same time we realize that without the community Slashdot loses most of its value. We respect that we don't host the servers, backup the databases, or patch the servers. Slashdot/Dice provide the services needed for Slashdot.

It's a give give relationship, and we each get something in return. Slashdot gets tons of Search hits and lots of web traffic. We get a place to learn, teach, and occasionally vent.

Look, if you want to change default color scheme or make pre-made palettes for us to choose from, we would probably be okay with that. If you want to take away our ability to block ads by Karma, or move the ads to the left side of my browser window, I would be okay with those things too.

If you want to make drastic changes to how the site works, this is a different story all together. The reason so many are against Beta is that it breaks some of the fundamental parts of what makes Slashdot work.

User input until recently has not been acknowledged. The acknowledgment we have received is not from the people that are making the decision to push Beta live. We told people Beta was broken, what it lacked, and we were rather surprised to get a warning that Beta would be live despite what we told people. People are already making plans to leave, which means that Slashdot could fade away very soon.

Whether this was the goal for Dice or not remains to be seen. If it is, it's been nice knowing you but I won't be back. A partnership only works when there is mutual respect between the parties. A word of caution, us Nerds have good memories and lots of knowledge. The loss of Slashdot impacts all of Dice holdings, not just Slashdot. I boycott everything a company holds, not just the product group that did me wrong.

If that was not the goal of Dice, you should quickly begin communicating with the user base. What are the plans are to fix what Beta has broken? Why is Beta being pushed live with things broken? A "Sorry we have not been communicating!", and perhaps even a "Thank you" to the user base for helping make Slashdot a success for so many years."

Limiting debate in science, is it still science?

s.petry s.petry writes  |  about 10 months ago

s.petry (762400) writes "We knew that this was coming, but I'm sure many of us thought that science would be immune to censorship. Perhaps not. I was not surprised that it happened on Boing Boing, but on a "science" site I never expected it (at least not this quickly).

These decisions may smack some as subjective or even malicious. After all comments are arguably the digital age response to print's "letter to the editor" — and they often contain criticisms of the article ranging from grammatical erorrs to factual oversights. Some may view the decision to ban comments as a form of censorship, a means for writers to escape any sort of visible accountability among their audience.

While that statement does not get to the meaty subject of real trolling and sock puppets, it does beg a very important set of questions. Especially when the reason for Popular Science from them claims:

And because comments sections tend to be a grotesque reflection of the media culture surrounding them, the cynical work of undermining bedrock scientific doctrine is now being done beneath our own stories, within a website devoted to championing science.

As the article points out, Science is not about doctrine. Science is about methods of proof. Science also requires collaboration and gets much better when numerous minds work on and debate the Science.

Is censorship the right direction, or is finding more intelligent ways of reducing sock puppets and trolls through moderation?"

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