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Proposed Penalty For UK Hackers Who "Damage National Security": Life

taikedz Re:Not inherently unreasonable (165 comments)

Except that this has nothing to do with "attacks". The word "damage" is also applied to the "trust" and "credibility" of governmental institutions.

This kind of legislation would apply even if nobody died in the carrying out of the activity.

about 2 months ago

Industry-Based ToDo Alliance Wants To Guide FOSS Development

taikedz It makes sense but.... (54 comments)

So the major players want to bring some order to the bazaar. So be it - they can try. There are small projects that will probably decide to cooperate, and will because they are a one- or two- person effort - but the projects that truly behave like a bazaar will remain as coordinated or uncoordinated as they still are.

I don't see this effort being capable of shoving an agenda down anybody's throats - if you don't care for the agenda, don't. Submit your code to the project as and when you see fit, and work on the bits you want to. If tomorrow they want to address what they see as glaring issues in GNU's netcat, they'll be able to throw resources at it collectively - but I doubt they'll be able to tap GNU's shoulder and say "hey, give us some of 'your' devs to fix this."

In the end, if the effort results in a pooled selection of developers, incentivized directly and collectively (read: employed) by the companies, to work on aspects of open source projects they have communal stake in, to common goals and specification, that is probably going to be a good thing.

If they fork any of the technologies that is fine too - that's exactly what GNU GPLv3 was meant to allow them to do. They just can't expect to fork the maintainers and community too.

If however there is a scenario in which volunteers can be coerced into their way or the highway, that scenario must be understood and countermeasures prepared by those who would stand to lose from it. Don't take it too seriously, but don't take it in any way lightly either.

about 3 months ago

Gmail Now Rejects Emails With Misleading Combinations of Unicode Characters

taikedz Insufficient (79 comments)

The "highly restricted" spec is meant to catch suspicious combos like in the mybank example - but does not catch full-ascii (which is an even more restrictive level) trickery like tvvitter.com (notice the two "v" chars). that combo in particular is now known, but goes to demonstrate that trickery does not need charsets larger than 7-bit... some people simply get caught by hsbc.net...

about 4 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Where Do You Get (or Share) News About Open Source Projects?

taikedz various (85 comments)

From a user's perspective, three sources: the Linux Action Show podcast highlghts fun/useful items once a week.

Then there's tuxmachines.org which talks about.... well pretty much anything, you'll have to sift through the deluge...

Then just following what's generally popular, and using alternativeto.net to find open source counterparts...

about 5 months ago

French Blogger Fined For Negative Restaurant Review

taikedz She chose to not have a lawyer, and to not defend (424 comments)

In the original article an ArretSurImages.fr, the blogger details in her interview that she decided not to hire a lawyer, instead simply complied immediately and did not defend her position. She was not required by the court to remove her post, but she did so of her own accord.

A commenting lawyer interviewed for the article indicated that the case shows more the necessity of getting legal advice, rather than any evolution of rights on the Internet.

Yes it's sad that she was attacked for her criticisms, but it's sadder that she did not take responsibility, or stand her ground.

about 5 months ago

Qualcomm Takes Down 100+ GitHub Repositories With DMCA Notice

taikedz Re:What else is safe ? (349 comments)

This is sounding like a LOIC - but that issues DMCA requests instead of network requests :-p

about 5 months ago

Google and Microsoft Plan Kill Switches On Smartphones

taikedz Re:Who has the big red button? (137 comments)

Hm. I would say "there goes my preference for not associating my phone with an online account" but that would actually be incorrect. Though I would indeed prefer not to have to have an account to install apps.

I guess I still treat my phone like a computer in many respects and I'm trying my darndest to keep it away from any form of remote kill at all for the sake of a "no remote please" blanket stance...

Still, I'm pretty sure I prefer to be slightly on the neurotic side.

about 6 months ago

Google and Microsoft Plan Kill Switches On Smartphones

taikedz Who has the big red button? (137 comments)

Whilst all this may be valid and true, how are we going to prevent the "wrong people" from using this kill switch? Will it be hardware based, in which case, how will we be sure it won't be triggered/used remotely if we install a different OS on the device? Or if some script kiddie found a way of activating it by exploiting an insecure app?

(new hollywood armaggedon scenario: terrorists threaten to detonante a phone bomb that would activate kill switches around the world, bringing down entire civilizations)

Yes, a technological solution might exist for the problem; question is, is this one the right one? Are we going to stop looking for alternatives?

about 5 months ago

Goodbye, Ctrl-S

taikedz Re:Correction (521 comments)

No, they meant Ctrl-X , Y

about 7 months ago

The Internet's Broken. Who's Going To Invent a New One?

taikedz Re:Just no. (162 comments)

The main thing that is wrong with the Internet is that it's still an academic plaything.

It was invented for use in a lab, and extended for use by trustable peers across the country. Then someone opened the floodgates.

What we need is a base infrastructure that is paranoid by design, not trusting by nature.

Oh and one that is capable of handling bazillions of entities on it.

about 7 months ago

New French Law Prohibits After-Hours Work Emails

taikedz The Guardian article is not accurate (477 comments)

Reading the original article on Les Echos.fr, it seems to me this is not law but an agreement between a coalition of enterprise owners and the unions - they've signed an agreement to implement this.

La semaine dernière, après six mois de négociation, le patronat des sociétés d’ingénierie et de conseil et des bureaux d’études (Syntec et Cinov) a signé avec la CFDT et la CGC (56% de leurs salariés à elles deux) un avenant à l’accord de 1999 sur les 35 heures qui pourrait avoir valeur d’exemple.

"Last week, after six months of negotiation, [ a union of ] bosses of engineering, consulting and design departments (Syntec and Cinov) signed with CFDT and CGC [workers' unions] (56% of their joint workforce) an ammendment to the 1999 agreement on the right to 35 hour working week which could set an example [to the rest of the country?]."

A third union that didn't sign, the CGT, is actually deploring the fact that it still has a loophole allowing it to be ignored, and a previous agreement between the two camps to try and improve working conditions was struck down by a court of law:

Cela suffira-t-il à convaincre les juges? L’avenant est un nouvel épisode du feuilleton juridique, que les signataires espèrent être le dernier dans leur profession. En avril 2013, la Cour de cassation avait invalidé le précédent dispositif, jugeant le contrôle de l’amplitude et de la charge de travail insuffisant.

Will it be enough to convince the judges? The amendment is a new episode in this jurisdiction saga, which the signatories hope to be the last in their profession. In April 2013, a high court rejected their last attempt, judging that the control of the amplitude and amount of work insufficient.

French journalistic style is not as easy to decipher as English-language journalism -- the French style is very fond of appearing as literary as possible. I'll post extra translations at some point if anybody wants.

about 8 months ago

Judge (Tech) Advice By Results

taikedz Stallman take heed! (162 comments)

Anybody who has tried to put a bog-standard user on Free Software Only laptops (Yeelong or X60 exclusively) with only Free Software and no proprietary.... knows that the user runs screaming back to the motherly proprietary vendors with reinforced assurance that the FSF are nuts. And we all lose.

about 8 months ago

Judge (Tech) Advice By Results

taikedz Pro tips for beginners confuses beginners (162 comments)

I'd phrase it like this:

If the advice you gave was too difficult to follow, you didn't take your audience into account. / If the advice they need requires extra knowedge/effort, be there to help them implement.

On the whole however I think the idea is spot on. Could do with some <h1> and <h2> lines to help the TL;DR crowd.

about 8 months ago

Should Microsoft Give Kids Programmable Versions of Office?

taikedz No, just give them Free, Ope Sourced LibreOffice (226 comments)

TDF should be pushing their scriptable LibreOffice, and point out the benefits of not having to purchase it either now or in the future, the freedom of open formats, and also the benefits from a "smart kids" point of view to giving them an open-sourced office suite they can tinker with.

If companies see value in using Microsoft's full suite and stack, more power to them both. In the mean time, from an educational, budget and general open formats point of view, LibreOffice is the way to go.

Heck, if it's about kids' programming skills, and if the kids think they can improve the scriptability of the application itself, they could even submit their own patches and features to LO. Not so with MSO.

about 8 months ago

Ask Slashdot: User-Friendly Firewall For a Brand-New Linux User?

taikedz some notes (187 comments)

I know you've said you're trying to avoid screwing it up, but if you want, the CentOS wiki is pretty good for explaining what and why, and since it's a kernel firewall, it applies to Ubuntu too. In fact, I suspect all other "firewall tools" are basic GUI frontends to iptables. If you are indeed concerned about firewalling (though not quite as concerned as crypto-specialists), you probably at least want to have a go at it manually with some easy to understand notes

When in doubt, try it on a virtual machine of course.

I put together a general, documented, script that I run on all my new installs; comment out any lines you don't need. nixCraft has some notes on restarting the Ubuntu iptables/firewall under what I assume is upstart.

about 8 months ago

Ex-Microsoft Employee Arrested For Leaking Windows 8

taikedz There was not loss... at all... (197 comments)

Indeed, by physical standards he stole nothing as the owner (licensor) of the software still has it.

Normally software theft can be counted in lost sales due to leakage...

.... and let's face it. Microsoft lost nothing from the leak itself.

about 9 months ago

A Call For Rollbacks To Previous Versions of Software

taikedz RollbaIs there anywhere that /does/ do rollback? (199 comments)

Where have we seen in consumer space the ability to rollback an uncompleted install? Once it's installed, the only way back is to find a previous installer, nuke, and reinstall.

This has been standard IT procedure since Microsoft invented "service packs."

Indeed, and since way before too.

It used to be that you never went for the x.0. Nowadays, we have to be wary of getting any x.y.0

about 9 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Linux For Grandma?

taikedz Choose whatever you can support over the phone (287 comments)

Nevermind what the distro or the desktop environment is (well, within reason). So long as you can help her, even on the end of a crackly phone line, it's fine.

When installing for any non-techie, Desktop Environment aside, show them how to find their browser and applications, show them how to find the file manager, and install Synapse so that they can search for pretty much anything (for bonus points, set the Synapse shortcut to something simple like Super+Space). Basically, give them their starting points, and show them how to search.

Whether you choose to move your mother/relative/neighbour to KDE, Xfce, GNOME 3 or even Unity if you like (or even Windows or Mac at that) it has no bearing. Once you have set them up and you have installed the applications and configured all shortcuts, it's you who needs to know the system.

I support my dad on his Mac (he's die-hard Mac which is why I haven't moved him to Linux) piloting him blind because I know the system inside out, I know if he clicks in one place, I can predict the set of dialogs he'll see. I use Manjaro Xfce for Linux because it's install-once and sufficiently light. When setting up for a non-technician, I customize shortcuts my way, show them the ropes in person and hand them a cheat sheet based on my setup choice. If they mail me or call me, I know how to pilot them back to safety.

about 9 months ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do I Change Tech Careers At 30?

taikedz Get a head start by self-teaching (451 comments)

First off - if you're happy with your current role, why leave? Greener grass, etc. Talk to people in the area of activity first to get an idea of what it's like. The "private sector" (if there is much distinction) may work at a different pace with different imperatives than what you're used to, and the difference will be more business politics than actual technological differences/merit.

Secondly, what industry do you want to work with? I've worked 2nd level and 1st level support, mainly enterprise and some helpdesk, in a variety of industries; some experiences were enjoyable on average complex tech, some tech was amazin but for dull projects or industries... Make sure you're iterested in what the technology is applied to, and not just the technology itself. Applying great server products to manage a ball-bearing packing facility is not necessarily the most enriching experience after a few months, since most of the time it will just be maintenance.

Thirdly, if you want to learn about Microsoft products, you'll either need to shell out for them yourself, or find a job that makes use of them. Most likely is indeed tech support, from an entry level perspective. I can tell you that some support jobs teach you little by way of actual tech, some teach you lots, depending on the support level, and whether you're supporting users or integrators. Be on the lookout for technologies that interest you within the job descriptions, and go after those.

Finally, to learn about the underlying technologies before you can buy the software licenses, you would still do well to have a look at setting up enteprise Linux systems. I know you said you like Microsoft products but hear me out - administrative skills, troubleshooting, and many network-related tasks translate directly across platforms. You could be on CentOS, Ubuntu Server, Windows 200x server or OS X Server; from an administrative, and infrastructure and maintenance point of view, it's the same difference. Examples are setting up such things as web servers, SSL, LDAP, network troubleshooting, data migration, backup, SMTP server setup, database configuration, app server clustering, etc; and some non-technology stuff like change management, some minor project management, requirements gathering, system design, etc.

You can't teach yourself Enterprise stuff straight on Microsoft products on a hobbyist budget. Or you can, but it's an expensive hobby, which is why the normal route if you really want to pursue Microsoft tech, would be to change job. Your other option would be to convince your employer to invest in Microsoft.

But if it's specifically for your spare time, Linux is definitely what you want to look into.

about 9 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Does Your Employer Perform HTTPS MITM Attacks On Employees?

taikedz Re:Not MITM (572 comments)

Out of curiosity, what was the name of the feature? All I can see on this thread are "mitm" and "proxy" - but how is this feature actually called from a vendor point of view? I doubt it was being called as "SSL defeater" or something alarming like that...

about 9 months ago



Haiku debates kernel switch to Linux... or not.

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about 4 months ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "A very interesting discussion is taking place in the Haiku mailing list. A developer has created a working prototype implementation of the BeOS API layer on top of the Linux kernel, and he is wondering if the project is worth pursuing.

Both 'sides' make a lot of compelling arguments, and it gives a lot of insight into decisions that went into the Haiku project, both past and present."

Link to Original Source

Ask Slashdot: Did Ubuntu for Munch Citizens Fly or Flop?

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about 9 months ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "A few months ago, the Linux community was awash with pride as the City of Munich responded to Windows XP's EOL by offering Ubuntu installation CDs for free. It was a triumph in the choice of Free Software over the most significant prorpietary software vendor in desktop space.

That EOL date is still looming, but we've had scant news since. The media has moved swiftly on, and no updates relating to this have appeared recently — at least, not in publications in Englisch.
Did the citizens take up the offer?
How many people converted their machines?
Did local computer consultants sudddenly get a surge of requests for help installing Ubuntu?

Or was this apparent win actually a quiet fail?

Did giving an alternate operating system away do anything in the bid to wrest computers from the dying grip of Windows XP?"

Gates Spends Entire First Day Back in Office Trying to Install Windows 8.1

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about 10 months ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "Bill Gates’s first day at work in the newly created role of technology adviser got off to a rocky start yesterday as the Microsoft founder struggled for hours to install the Windows 8.1 upgrade. After failing to install the upgrade by lunchtime, Mr. Gates summoned the new Microsoft C.E.O. Satya Nadella, who attempted to help him with the installation, but with no success.

A Microsoft spokesman said only that Mr. Gates’s first day in his new job had been “a learning experience” and that, for the immediate future, he would go back to running Windows 7."

Link to Original Source

Surrey UK: "mini-tornado" lifts feral cats in the air

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about a year ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "A "mini-tornado" brought down trees, damaged property and even lifted cats in the air, an eyewitness has said.

Shirley Blay, who keeps horses at the Jolly Blossom Stables on Station Road, Chobham, told BBC Surrey: "It was a mini-tornado, I can't describe it as anything less. "It started with very heavy rain, hailstones and very strong wind and all of a sudden, the wind was very, very strong, to the point of lifting roofs.

"We've got four feral cats in the yard and they were being lifted off the ground — about 6ft off the ground — they just went round like a big paper bag." She said the people and animals who were caught up in the storm were uninjured. A spokesman from Valgrays Animal Rescue in Warlingham said: "It was like something out of a Steven Spielberg film."

Link to Original Source

Win/GALLUP's annual survey names USA as greatest threat to world peace

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about a year ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "The results of the Win/GALLUP Annual Survey for 2013 state that from a poll of circa 65,000 people from around the world, the highest proportion believe the United States is the greatest threat to world peace:

"The US was the overwhelming choice (24% of respondents) for the country that represents the greatest threat to peace in the world today. This was followed by Pakistan (8%), China (6%), North Korea, Israel and Iran (5%). Respondents in Russia (54%), China (49%) and Bosnia (49%) were the most fearful of the US as a threat.

These results show that although the US is widely regarded as posing the greatest threat to peace, it is, paradoxically, still the most desired country to live in. This could show that for many of the people surveyed across the globe it appears that the notion of the ‘American Dream’ is still alive.""

Link to Original Source

EU parliament rejects ban on destructive deep sea trawling

taikedz taikedz writes  |  1 year,8 days

taikedz (2782065) writes "The practice of deep sea trawling, known as bottom fishing, is practiced by extremely few, the benefits of doing so are so small that without subsidies, the industry would fail — and yet:

"The European Parliament on Tuesday narrowly rejected a ban on bottom-fishing trawlers, blamed by environmentalists for massive deep-sea destruction but defended by France and Spain. Bottom fishing with heavy trawl nets scoops up everything on the seabed, a practice environmentalists say destroys fragile ecosystems such as coral reefs which are home to a wide variety of species and essential breeding grounds.

"Without subsidies, deep-sea trawling would be unprofitable," [Environment group Greenpeace] said, noting that while relatively "few fishermen in France, Spain and Portugal specialise in deep-sea fishing with trawls ... their impact is disproportionately large.""

Link to Original Source

Google wants to write your social media responses for you

taikedz taikedz writes  |  1 year,20 days

taikedz (2782065) writes "A new patent has been filed that tries to analyse your past communications to then construct responses to the overwhelming amount of posts you receive. From the article:

"Essentially, the program analyzes the messages a user makes through social networks, email, text messaging, microblogging, and other systems. Then, the program offers suggestions for responses, where the original messages are displayed, with information about others reactions to the same messages, and then the user can send the suggested messages in response to those users. The more the user utilizes the program and uses the responses, the more the bot can narrow down the types of responses you make."

Instead of DYAC we'll have a flood of DYAR for this auto-responder..."

Link to Original Source

Top web animators Kickstart a friendly evolution explanation series

taikedz taikedz writes  |  1 year,28 days

taikedz (2782065) writes "Artist Jon Perry has teamed up with Rosemary Mosco of Bird and Moon Comics fame, along with a host of other artists, to launch a Kickstarter campaign for their series Stated Clearly, to further explain the theory and science of evolution in friendly manner to all, with careful consideration engage with audiences who otherwise shun it on moral or religious grounds, to help promote better understanding of the natural world and allow us to make informed decisions on health, agriculture, environment, conservation and many other topics.

Genetics and Evolution are two topics which are greatly misunderstood by the American public and the world. Genetics is often considered too complicated to bother studying, and Evolution is often rejected for perceived conflicts with personal beliefs. Both topics have been butchered by the media and popular culture which contributes to the public’s confusion.

Our teachers need better tools for teaching evolution, and curious free learners need good online resources for evolution.

At StatedClearly.com we are creating 21 short animations which teach genetics and evolution to the greater public in simple friendly language. We have created 4 so far. The videos are on YouTube for everyone to watch and enjoy.

Some are offended by the fact that humans are related to other animals. Others are offended by perceived conflicts with religious beliefs. The Theory of Evolution, even though it says nothing directly about God or religion, is strongly associated with Atheism in pop-culture.

Our videos use language that is friendly and religiously neutral without jeopardizing the science.


Link to Original Source

Adobe's Creative Cloud hacked within a day of release

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about a year and a half ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "Photoshop allegedly being the most pirated software on the net, it should come as no surprise that someone has already circumvented the security mechanisms that would normally tether the user to a subscription-based access to the software by regularly calling home.

Is this same diligence how the GIMP never gains any real momentum...?"

Link to Original Source

UK government "muzzling" scientists

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about a year and a half ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "Fiona Fox, chief executive of the Science Media Centre (SMC), has claimed that leading scientists independently advising the UK government are being actively prevented from speaking to the public and media, especially in times of crisis when scientific evidence is necessary for a fully open and educated public debate, such as the current badger culling policy, and the past volcanic eruptions and ash fallout and their effects. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), whom many of these scientists are advising, denies any such practices."
Link to Original Source

Google's new image search experience harms content producers' revenues

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about 2 years ago

taikedz (2782065) writes "A couple of days ago, Google released a new version of its image search. This turned out to be a huge slap in the face of content creators [...]. When clicking on a thumbnail, the original image is hotlinked and embedded into Google’s result page [without displaying the original site at all]. This costs bandwidth [to the image host] and the user has less incentive to visit the webpage of the original creator."
Link to Original Source

Ask Slashdot: What are virtualization skills

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about 2 years ago

taikedz writes "Some job descriptions I have come across request candidates to have "strong virtualization skills." Aside from knowing how to setup a virtual machine, what other technologies and techniques do you think fall under this subject?"

Ask Slashdot: Remote application access

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about 2 years ago

taikedz writes "Citrix Xenapp with Receiver/Metaframe allows publishing individual applications installed on a Windows server to users on remote machines. These applications open in their own windows, along side others as if they were installed locally. I am looking to do the same at home, with free software, publishing applications from Mac, Linux, and Windows machines (and yes, I've verified the license agreements for the apps I am going to do this with!). Up until now, the only alternatives I have found are full-on remote desktop login, not seamlessly-intergrated.

Can the Slashdot community recommend any tools that can achieve the goal of remote individual application access across platforms for free or at low-cost?"



The Surrey Catnado Story

taikedz taikedz writes  |  about a year ago

Yes, I posted that one.

Someone shared it at me. It was lunch time, I was amused, I was hungry, the blood had left my brain.

My most sincere apologies.

I hold no responsibility for it actually reaching the front page though.

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