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FCC Orders Comcast To Stop Labeling Equipment Rental a Service Fee

supersat The box is pretty much mandatory (97 comments)

The summary says it's "a converter box that allows cable subscribers with older televisions to receive digital channels," but now that the FCC allows cable companies to encrypt ALL channels, it's pretty much mandatory. Sure, you might be able to convince them to give you a CableCARD for your compatible TV, but I've heard that they make it difficult to get.

about two weeks ago

Russian State TV Anchor: Russia Could Turn US To "Radioactive Ash"

supersat Re:Have we said the same thing? (878 comments)

In Capitalist America, news agencies control the state!

about a month ago

Oklahoma Schools Required To Teach Students Personal Finance

supersat Also required in Oregon (304 comments)

This was required in Oregon when I was in high school. I was amazed to discover it wasn't mandatory everywhere.

about 2 months ago

Wine On Android Starts Allowing Windows Binaries On Android/ARM

supersat ARM executables? (140 comments)

What about ARM executables? Windows RT ships with most of the Windows utilities ported to ARM, as well as Office and .NET.

about 2 months ago

Customer: Dell Denies Speaker Repair Under Warranty, Blames VLC

supersat Plausible, but unlikely (526 comments)

If you increase VLC's gain too high, it will begin to clip the audio signal (just like anything else would). Speakers do not like clipping. While VLC's volume control makes it easier to distort audio files than, say, Windows Media Player, Dell really should have some hardware protection in place. In this case, it sounds like the speakers were under-spec'ed with respect to the audio amp. Sounds like a design flaw to me!

about 2 months ago

Superbowl Means Time For Spy Cams, Hazmat Squads and Bomb-Sniffing Dogs

supersat Re: Temporarily, it's the Terrorists (75 comments)

Well, that explains things like US-VISIT and ESTA. The US government has become increasingly hostile to tourists.

about 3 months ago

The Biggest Tech Mishap of 2013?

supersat Re: I'd say the target hack... (162 comments)

Encrypted PINs and the magstripe CVV, which is different than the CVV2 on the back of your card.

about 4 months ago

The Biggest Tech Mishap of 2013?

supersat Snowden (162 comments)

I'm pretty sure it was hiring Edward Snowden as your SharePoint admin.

about 4 months ago

Spotify's Own Math Suggests Musicians Are Still Getting Hosed

supersat Re: Your call (244 comments)

I believe Spotify operates under compulsory/statutory licenses, so you can't really pull your music from the service.

about 4 months ago

The Double Life of Memory Exposed With Automata Processor

supersat Exploring NFAs in parallel (32 comments)

Well, strictly speaking, you can already explore all paths of an NFA simultaneously. You simply convert it to a DFA, which each state representing a potential subset of states the NFA could be in. It requires exponentially more states, but the running time is equivalent.

about 5 months ago

Tor Now Comes In a Box

supersat Re: Make it easy? (150 comments)

One of the problems with that is that sometimes your real IP can leak out. For example, if you visit a page that installs the FBI's CIPAV malware, it will bypass Tor and report the real IP. If all traffic is routed through Tor by another device, this won't work.

about 5 months ago

Real-Time Radio Search Engine From Music Industry's Nemesis

supersat Re: Internet radio quality sucks. (59 comments)

High bitrate (128+ kbps) streams are almost always strictly better than FM. FM audio is band-limited to about 15 KHz so they have bandwidth for stereo (the 19 KHz pilot and 30 KHz of bandwidth around 38 KHz for the stereo signal).

One other dirty little secret of the radio industry is that many studio-transmitter links are just 128 kbps ISDN links -- most of which are MP3, although newer equipment supports AAC as well. Additionally, while the exact codec of HD Radio is a trade secret, it's thought to be very similar to HE-AAC running at 96kbps. Even 64kbps HE-AAC sounds pretty good.

about 5 months ago

Bill Gates Acknowledges Ctrl+Alt+Del Was a Mistake

supersat Re:So why is it used in Windows? (665 comments)

Microsoft calls this the "secure attention sequence." I have heard that older PCs' keyboard interfaces would directly generate an interrupt on reception of ctrl+alt+del, but I can't find anything to back that up.

Supposedly ctrl+alt+del was chosen to be the SAS in Windows NT because no existing app used it as a key combination.

about 7 months ago

TSA Reminds You Not To Travel With Hand Grenades

supersat Re: Complete Failure (378 comments)

Deterrence is easy to measure if you're wiretapping everyone.

about 7 months ago

All Bitcoin Wallets On Android Vulnerable To Theft

supersat The bigger issue... (137 comments)

... is that supposedly Android's "secure" random number generation... isn't. This could potentially affect much more than Bitcoin wallets.

Does anyone know what the issue is? This article seems to suggest it's a vulnerability in the SecureRandom class, but no actual details.

about 8 months ago

Microsoft Slashes Prices On Surface

supersat Re:They are in such demand (330 comments)

The only content you can create on the Surface are Office docs. And only personal content -- use of the included Office software for any organization (including non-profits) requires a separate, full Office license.

about 9 months ago

Microsoft Slashes Prices On Surface

supersat Re:Linux? (330 comments)

No. The bootloader is locked down, and since there are code signing requirements for apps, you can't even run a VM.

about 9 months ago



MPAA admits to math error in college piracy study

supersat supersat writes  |  more than 6 years ago

supersat (639745) writes "Well, well. It looks like college students aren't responsible for nearly as much piracy as the MPAA previously calculated. A 2005 study concluded that college students account for 44% of piracy losses, but the MPAA now admits that number is more like 15%. Meanwhile, Educause estimates that campus networks only account for 3% of piracy losses, since many students live off campus. One can hope these new figures will disuade Congress from imposing new regulations on campus networks."
Link to Original Source

Computer glitch halts Seattle fireworks

supersat supersat writes  |  more than 6 years ago

supersat (639745) writes "At the stroke of midnight, Seattle's fireworks show ground to a halt. The source of the problem is reported to be a corrupted file that wasn't checked until the last minute. After two reboots, the fireworks had to be detonated manually. And yes, one blog commenter, claiming to have worked on prior shows, said that the shows run on Windows."
Link to Original Source

supersat supersat writes  |  more than 7 years ago

supersat (639745) writes "As previously reported, renowned computer scientist Jim Gray has been missing at sea since January 28th, 2007. Now, with the coast guard abandoning their search, a large effort was made to acquire satellite images of the search area, taken Thursday morning (February 1st). With the help of many individuals, Amazon has now made those images available for the world to comb through, using their Mechanical Turk system. Somewhat ironically, Jim Gray was also involved in the creation of Microsoft's TerraServer, the precursor to Google Earth, Microsoft Virtual Earth, and others.

So, what are you waiting for? Help find Jim Gray!"


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