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Comments

top

Boeing Told To Replace Cockpit Screens Affected By Wi-Fi

tlhIngan Re:Surprisingly (125 comments)

(Is it really a crash risk? That I don't know.)

Potentially as one of the faults is "Display stops working". Whether that means it goes blank, or stops updating (i.e., frozen) is unclear.

Now, it's one reason why there is redundancy - if one display crashes, the PFD (primary flight display, i.e., flight instruments) can be reverted to the other screen (normally showing navigational information). If THAT doesn't work the PFD can be shown on the central displays (usually showing engine and other information), again, two of each.

And the co-pilot has another pair of displays as well that get their information from a redundant system, so 6 displays in total, which can get their information from two different independent sources.

Oh yeah, there's also basic backup instruments too.

Is it a problem? Yes. Is it fatal? Well, you have to be pretty damn unlucky to get all displays to lock up and the backup instruments as well. So a small chance, especially if the crew is inexperienced.

10 hours ago
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Japan's Shinkansen Bullet Trains Celebrate 50th Anniversary

tlhIngan Re:The average speed has slowed down in Canada (98 comments)

I just drove from Edmonton to Ucluelet (near Tofino on Vancouver Island) and back. Road conditions were great. Hell, I'd even say they were perfect. BC has 120 km/hr speed limits on many stretches of highway now. There are good rest areas, some with picnic tables, proper bathrooms, and a concession truck - even in the middle of what seems like nowhere. I don't know where you got the idea that our highway system sucked but maybe you should come drive out west.

Well, you're also talking about BC which has a natural beauty to it that the views of many BCers differs from the "Rest of Canada". So those rest stops not only are convenient, but the generally are maintained because a surprisingly large number of people DO stop just to admire the scenery.

It's one reason why BC is full of tree huggers and all that who seem hell bent on preventing any more oil pipelines from being built. (Because an oil spill unfortunately forms a nasty blight). Hell, we even think a clear-cut is a godawful sight (it isn't, it's actually a nice way to rebuild the environment and in a couple of years it turns from ugly tree stumps and dirt into a meadow, a decade later you see trees forming and then in a couple of decades it's a young rising forest.).

Also why LNG is OK, because an LNG spill disappears in short order.

Finally, it should be noted those roads are good because it's generally treacherous come late fall and winter. So a rest stop means one can park and wait for daylight rather than try to creep along at night because it is scary. A pothole filled rough road? Might as well just close the road because it'll be too dangerous to drive.

10 hours ago
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iOS Trojan Targets Hong Kong Protestors

tlhIngan Re:Advanced? Requires a Jailbreak & manual ins (61 comments)

That's great, but seriously, who doesn't jailbreak their iphone? The security of the walled garden is fairly theoretical since there is so much incentive to disable it.

It is a bit like saying that some website can't steal your personal info unless you click through that warning that shows up the first time you use Firefox on a webpage with a non-SSL form.

Generally the number of jailbroken iOS devices has hovered around 10%.

Not too many people do jailbreak because iOS is pretty much good enough, and each revision just adds less and less reason to do so. Sure there's always going to be folks who jailbreak to get it so they can customize every single thing like an Android phone, but for the most part, most user's reasons for jailbreaking disappear each new iOS revision.

(Remember, there are a LOT of iOS devices out there, so when a new jailbreak claims "1 million devices were jailbroken", that pales in comparison to numbers like 50+M iPhone5S's were sold or 10M iPhone6/6+ were sold. ).

About the only reason people consistently jailbreak is... pirated apps, and even those have a non-jailbreak workaround involving cracked apps and enterprise signing certificates (which generally last only a short time because Apple invalidates them quickly). Even then the iOS piracy scene is tiny compared to Android. If you want apps for free, Android's really where it's at. It's far easier to find an app cracked for Android than it is for iOS. Usually because on Android what they do is they buy it, then refund it.

10 hours ago
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iOS Trojan Targets Hong Kong Protestors

tlhIngan Re:iOS Attack Vector? (61 comments)

So, the question begging to be asked is whether jailbreaking phones in China by the owner is a common occurrence or if the phones are sold "pre-jailbroken" by a larger agency and able to download and install these hacks at will?

Probably a mix of both, because the #1 reason to jailbreak these days seems to be... pirating software. I mean, the iOS 7.12 jailbreak was done by a bunch of Chinese people to promote... their Chinese app store. Which happens to conveniently be filled with pirated apps. (It was one of the things that led to the original iOS7 exploit to be questioned).

So effectively the users jailbreak to get "free apps" from the Chinese app store that also happens to install malware along with it.

I'm guessing the Chinese store must have a lot of pirated apps, because piracy on iOS is just at a lower level - at least on Android there are entire "daily packs" that contain new and freshly updated paid apps on your favorite torrent site (which can be RSS fed to your torrent client). iOS apps ... not so much. Maybe a fraction and not as convenient to get.

12 hours ago
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The $1,200 DIY Gunsmithing Machine

tlhIngan Re:Hope He Continues (490 comments)

know a lot of people want to blame guns for many problems but that is a rather cheap excuse and avoidance of the fact that the public needs improved living conditions so that there are less violent people who act out irrationally. Without much hope of a decent future we do have far too many people who act out. We also have prisons that make only token gestures at rehabilitation of inmates and a mental health system that is a national disgrace.

But that's just an excuse as well because other countries have the same problems with mental illness, homelessness, poverty, etc. But the availability of guns is far lower so the rates of homicide and other deaths due to guns is also far lower.

Canada has roughly 1/3rd the per-capita gun ownership rate (roughly 300M guns in the US (1 per person), 10M in Canada (1/3rd per person, or 1 in 3 own a gun)), but still the same (if not more) issues with homelessness and poverty (especially among Native Americans). It's considered a bad year when the death rate due to violence (including knives and the like) approaches double digits in a city of roughly a half-million people. (Deaths due to guns is lower).

So I wouldn't blame just the crazies for the whole problem. Presumably a violent culture where owning a gun is more for "protection" and less for utility (e.g., recreation, hunting, etc).

Though if you really want to be truthful, most homicides are committed by handguns more so than long guns like the AR. It's just that the AR probably "looks scarier" and may be a good weapon if you're going to do a mass killing, but those generally tend to be fairly rare events.

yesterday
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eBay To Spin Off PayPal

tlhIngan Re:So eBay would survive (74 comments)

eBay and Paypal are mutually beneficial. Paypal is absolutely reliant on ebay for sheer volume. It's their foundation.

But I just don't think sellers liked being cornered into having to accept PP 99% of the time.

eBay is off it's core market, chasing more lucrative opportunities. Problem is, they don't own that other market (amazon, alibaba), never will, and are pissing off their base with every new change. It's the curse of needing constant growth in our economy.

Well, eBay and Paypal are fundamentally tied together.

eBay is a marketplace, but they don't do payments. Paypal does payments, and more importantly, Paypal lets random joe customer pay with a credit card to random jane seller WITHOUT a merchant account.

That's the key, because Amazon and Google and others are pretty much buyers are regular consumers, sellers are businesses (who may be single person owned and operated, but still has a business entity). Whereas sellers on eBay are made up of several groups, from standard companies to someone who found something in their attic one day. And the latter are NOT able to traditionally get a merchant account, which means they normally could only take limited forms of payment (cash, cheque, money order). Which over the Internet is... a stupid idea (who wants to go out and send a letter, wait a week, blah blah blah, when you can enter your credit card number and pay within minutes?).

Now, the eBay-Paypal split is probably to answer some of eBay's biggest customers (i.e., the people that run whole companies) to allow for alternate payment methods - including their own credit card payment system (or Amazon or Google), to be more flexible. Though you can probably guess eBay will mandate some form of credit card payment must be allowed, even if it means for most joe sellers, Paypal. (Again, because who wants to win an auction, then go out and get a money order by lining up at the post office, then mailing it out snail mail, and hope it gets there a couple of weeks later...).

Paypal has competition in all areas except person-to-person payments (well, they technically do have competition there too if you count bitcoins, but until someone makes it so I can buy bitcoins with my credit card and it magically all works like Paypal, it's a complex option).

eBay has network effects though - competition with eBay tends to be very niche or not at all. Because face it - eBay has customers, and sellers know that. And buyers know eBay sells practically everything. If you want me, as a seller to use something else, you better provide something good (usually in the form of lower fees). If you want me, as a buyer to use something else, you better provide something good for me (usually in the form of lower prices).

But there's a mismatch - buyers don't want to pay eBay prices off eBay, and sellers don't want to sell for much less than eBay because they'd just list on eBay instead. So sellers complain buyers "lowball" bids, while buyers complain that sellers ask so much it's just easier to stick with eBay.

yesterday
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Matchstick and Mozilla Take On Google's Chromecast With $25 Firefox OS Dongle

tlhIngan Re:Graphics appear to be closed/proprietary. (102 comments)

Why would this be so hard? "Cheap hardware is more important to us than open hardware" would be sufficient.

More like "Hardware people will want to buy and license from us" versus "Hardware that's open, but no one wants".

3D graphics is a patent minefield, where even data formats are patented as part of the standard.

So an open device with open firmware will mean basically it doesn't work - graphics will be stutter and framerates low. Perhaps video decoding will work out fine. Or maybe not.

Anyhow, the big thing is, ARM goes by what its customers (ARM licensees) want. And the hardware guys want silicon that their customers want. That silicon includes a decent GPU because their OS (Android) makes good use of it. Those customers (the ones taking the silicon and turning them into Android phones) don't care if it's open or closed source - as long as they can stick it in a box and tick off "runs Android".

And none of them down the chain care if it's open or closed source - because they've already gotten licenses for the source code or "it works" and they don't touch it.

That's the real reason - no one cares about open-source drivers because they're not affected by it. The silicon vendor gets source from ARM through their NDA and licensing agreements, the OEM/ODM may or may not get source code (they most likely probably won't care if things work, if they don't, they raise a support question).

yesterday
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Robotic Taster Will Judge 'Real Thai Food'

tlhIngan Re:Moron (103 comments)

Thai food is known for its balance of flavours. It's a delicate balance of a minimum of 2 (but usualy 4) of spicy, sweet, bitter, salty and sour in a dish.

It's also VERY easy to screw up.

As an aside, Jet Tila was appointed the Culinary Ambassador to Thailand for his role as a guide to Thai cuisine. (People from LA and Food Network viewers will recognize the name for he's had numerous appearances on various shows).

I guess we'll have a new Food Network special - Jet Tila vs. this machine.

2 days ago
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Apple Fixes Shellshock In OS X

tlhIngan Re:Why isn't this auto-update? (163 comments)

I have 10.9.5 and checked for software updates. None. Why do I have to click the link in the slashdot article and manually download the patch?!?!?

Because of many reasons.

First off, the patch isn't complete. Sure there was a patch last week, but did you know it didn't fix the problem? Yes, it fixed the obvious error, but there were still more (and new CVE was opened for Shellshock). Bash devs are still finding more holes related to this issue, and it goes down a deep rabbit hole. This hole may never be full patched for a long time.

Second, there aren't many OS X systems that are exploitable. Remote exploits require a server to take parameters, format them as environment variables and then call the shell (usually through system()). HTTP and CGI scripts are a common vector because that's exactly how they work. Most webservers out there run Linux and there really isn't a special reason to run OS X + httpd + CGI over running it on Linux especially on a public server. So for the scant few servers, those admins can update the shell.

And on OS X, the webserver is disabled by default and most users won't know how to turn it on. I don't think even OS X server has it on by default - given the server is really just a bunch of admin tools nowadays.

Third, well, I don't think many OS X apps actually bother using a call like system() to perform a task - there's probably a native Cocoa API that is supposed to be used instead.

So it's more of a hotpatch for those few machines that are potentially vulnerable. In fact, the patch that was provided last week wasn't fixing the issue, more working around the issue so it's harder to exploit (i.e., instead of an arbitrary variable containing a function, it has to be prefixed with _BASH_FUNC_ in order to be allowed as a definition).

There is currently no root-cause fix for the issue - it's actively being worked on by Bash developers and others. This isn't like heartbleed where the mistake was a little programming oversight - it's a full on design issue that dates back 20+ years. There are probably going to be dozens of patches to fix the issue in the end.

2 days ago
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Tor Executive Director Hints At Firefox Integration

tlhIngan Re:This isn't going to work. (115 comments)

I'd love to see more people using Tor, but the experience has to change a lot before we can do that.

Being anonymous and secure on Tor is not easy. It's a major inconvenience to disabling browser features like Javascript, and it requires firm behavioral changes from the user.

Putting a mainstream user into the same environment is simply not going to work.

In fact, I'd wager most Tor users who were "discovered" were not taking basic precautions - they just plainly sent identifying information over it through an exit node. I mean, it's well known the NSA runs a pile of exit nodes for the purposes of monitoring Tor, and Tor isn't a magic bullet that magically makes you disappear. But it's been advertised that way (especially when the Snowden revelations came out and everyone said "Use Tor!"), and users will be users and use their Facebook, Twitter, and online shopping at Amazon and others over Tor assuming "they're magically protected".

Well, they are, sort of. It's just the whole anonymization thing doesn't work when the user sabotages it by being non-anonymous.

So no, even if every Firefox user used Tor by default, nothing would really happen. Just Tor would get slower from all the YouTube and other traffic sent by users who go forth and de-anonymize themselves by logging into the sites.

2 days ago
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Google To Require As Many As 20 of Its Apps Preinstalled On Android Devices

tlhIngan Re:Android version req - long time coming (420 comments)

It depends on what the apps are. For example, the text message interface may be counted as one of the 20 "apps" but it is a requirement for a functional phone.

Well, that would be Hangouts now, replacing the AOSP Messages/SMS app with an all in one messaging system that combines Google Hangouts, SMS and other media.

But the other sare like Google Play, Google Play Store Music, Google Play Movies, Google Play Books (which really seem just duplicates of Google Play Store), then there are the likes go Google+, GMail (which doesn't replace the mail app), Google Search

2 days ago
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Medical Records Worth More To Hackers Than Credit Cards

tlhIngan Re:HL7 & MUMPS (78 comments)

Here is a great mumps tutorial for those of you that aren't familiar & for those of you who only know "modern" languages, it's a timely Halloween horror show...

The Daily WTF features a few MUMPs, uh... code. A shorthand overview and a collection of MUMPS articles. If it wasn't so specialized and used in so few areas, they'd probably have to institute a "no MUMPS stories" policy to avoid being flooded.

2 days ago
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Blood For Extra Credit Points Offer Raises Eyebrows In Test-Mad China

tlhIngan Re:Maybe not so silly (89 comments)

Well, the problem is it takes advantage of the educational system and gives a reward for donating.

The problem is in Asia, there is a strong fixation on "the big test". The one that determines your future - do you score high enough that you can CAN go to university, or are stuck doing a trade, or even worse, labourer?

(No, I don't think there's anything wrong with the trades, but in Asia, a plumber or electrician is seen as a lower level of prestige than an office worker).

It's why there is a high rate of teen suicide (the pressure imposed means many succumb, before AND after), and why many will literally study themselves to death (wake up, go to school, come home, do homework, study, study, study, study, study, go to bed). Students who "pass" (i.e., get university) often are rewarded handsomely for their hard work (luxury cars, condos, video game machines, etc). Students who fail, well, if the family is well off, they'll send them overseas to study at a UK or US university. If not, they get shamed and may even be disowned or kicked onto the street with little more than the clothes on their back.

Rewarding donations is not a new idea, but it has to be done VERY carefully because most of the time it results in the most desperate doing the most donations when they can least afford to do so (and at the detriment to themselves and the blood bank who may end up with substandard blood (e.g., infected, etc)).

2 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Multimedia-Based Wiki For Learning and Business Procedures?

tlhIngan Re:Why the preference for video? (97 comments)

Exactly.

Videos aren't easy things to produce, and properly producing them will take longer than writing them up.

That said, there is value in doing a video - it can be easier to show complex steps by doing it in a video that one can pause and rewind as well as show things like where you turn around the object rather than try to illustrate it.

However, that doesn't mean you shouldn't have a text description, and you shouldn't have long videos - no more than a couple of minutes. If it's a long procedure, then have multiple videos because the user may only need help in one area and having to sit through everything else gets old quick.

2 days ago
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Why the Z-80's Data Pins Are Scrambled

tlhIngan Re:C=128 (165 comments)

If the 6502 and Z80 waveforms for various instructions are examined, it quickly becomes apparent that the Z80 effectively divided its clock by 2 before using it. This is why, for the technology available in any particular year, they had comparable performance but the Z80 used twice as many clock cycles.

Actually, the problem was the ALU of the Z-80 was only 4 bits wide. So processing an 8 bit operand required two trips through the ALU, thus incurring twice the number of clocks or half the effective clock rate..

The 6502 and others had an 8-bit ALU which meant they could do an 8-bit operand in half the clocks.

2 days ago
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How 3D Printers Went Mainstream After Decades In Obscurity

tlhIngan Re:How it happened? Easy: PATENTS expired. (69 comments)

No, the availability of cheap parts did.

The 80s and 90s were marked by a distinct downturn in the "maker" movement, or rather, hobbyists who would tinker for fun. You can see it in the magazines - former hobbyist mags started turning into consumer electronics extravaganzas as people cared less about soldering bits together and assembling PCs and doing all sorts of nifty software stuff with them. Interfacing things became a whole lot less interesting.

The 2000s changed all that when people started getting interested in making things for fun again (Arduino had a big hand here, but there was a revival).

And guess what? 3D printers are back because the maker movement has ready access to cheap computing (Arduino, rpi, etc) that talk to computers super-easy (back then, you needed to build an ISA card, deal with DOS, etc, now, you can do with Linux or Windows, talk using USB, etc) and subsequently parts like stepper motors and all that.

It was less patents, and more hobbyists. People were 3D printing in the 80s and 90s, but they were big companies who could afford the equipment, and hobbyists were pretty much left high and dry - either you talked to a PC using ISA or if you were skilled, PCI, because cheap microcontrollers that were very capable were hard to get and even harder to assemble. Then you needed the skills of a mechanical guy to help build the xyz platform. Something the internet made readily available.

So basically the revival of the maker movement or hobbyist tinkerer, coupled with the rapid availability of talent via the Internet (and the availability of parts and supplies - being able to order anything online without it taking 6-8 weeks is a real boon), plus cheap and easily accessible microcontroller platforms that interface to everything make the whole project doable.

Was it doable in the 80s? Yes. Was it easy? Not so much. When you're mail ordering parts because you can't find it locally, having to start, stop because you miss something etc., and then finding someone to help you with parts of it can be challenge.

2 days ago
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World's Smallest 3G Module Will Connect Everything To the Internet

tlhIngan Re:3G is terrible for all these things (117 comments)

Sure 3G for Vehicle-to-Vehicle communication might make sense since the yearly cost in a car is far higher than the cost of 3g connection and there's plenty of electricity to go around,

Actually, V2V communications is going less high-tech. There's no need for 3G or WiFi radio broadcasts for V2V because you don't need to transmit further than a few cars either way. So they're moving towards lights. Modulating the headlights (daytime running lights mean they're always on), brake lights, and other lights because well, light communication is short range anyways, and it's really only of importance to those around you (e.g., if you're braking, it's important to the guy behind you in the same lane and adjoining lanes (because why you braked may also be going into their lanes).

Using WiFi or other mechanisms mean the guy on the intersecting street gets the information too (useless, has to be filtered out), as well as opposing traffic (who probably know why you're stopping anyways by nature of coming the other way).

Anyhow, smart meters can use either 3G or WiFi (proprietary licensed band) already. Meters are limited by standards to draw at most 12W of power (which is a ton of power when multiplied by the number of meters out there - a million businesses and homes? That's 12MW, or roughly 12,000 homes by the old measurement). Given they only check in periodically, a 3G modem doesn't consume all that much power idling (otherwise your battery life would be much less than a day).

3 days ago
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Mobile Phone Use Soon To Be Allowed On European Flights

tlhIngan Re:We've really gotten wrapped around the axle (95 comments)

We've really gotten wrapped around the axle on this whole electronic devices on aircraft thing. The local oscillator of an ordinary FM radio receiver is 10.7mhz above the indicated frequency... which makes 100mhz on your FM dial 110.7mhz... which meant there was a carrier in the middle of the COM/NAV band that aircraft use. So we had to (understandably) prevent FM radios from operating on aircraft. But thru the years it has turned into all electronics. It's like the "five monkeys with bananas and water" experiment gone wrong. We've gotten so wrapped around no electronics we forgot WHY.

Actually, there are plenty of oscillators that happen between 108-122MHz.

In fact, the FCC allowable limits for equiment has a noticable dip around that region.

No, it's not because of a receiver, but all the other oscillators in the system. A big one is the pixel clock on things like cameras and LCD screens - they often do run smack right in the middle with a loud spike.

Then there are all the higher frequency devices. A certain model of cellphone was known to cause GPS unlocks on the aircraft GPS. This wasn't a problem because the only ones using GPS extensively was military and GA, but these days with RNP and GPS approaches, a GPS unlock could screw up everything.

Even to this day there are still incidences of suspected EMI causing havoc - usually things like unexplained instrument drift. My favorite was where my flight instructor had a phone call (we were taxiing back to the ramp) and I could hear both sides of the conversation through the avionics (my instructor had removed his headset to answer the phone - given the low power setting of taxiing, it wasn't necessary).

The only thing that may save this is if it's like if you try to use your phone on a cruise ship where you get "Cellular At Sea". Though I suspect in a couple of months we'll see people complaining about $1000 phone bills because they couldn't do anything but yak the whole way. Even worse, because these kind of guys make NO roaming agreements with anyone, your carrier won't be able to write off the bill because they have to pass on the full rate - a roaming agreement means their cost is far lower than what you're paying (down to cents a minute when you're paying tens or dollars a minute).

Yes, your phone will eventually roam onto it - because they are not a preferred carrier though, your phone will go through many anxious searching rounds before it'll reluctantly find service at the PMITA carrier. (It's non-preferred, because the carrier can't make much money off it).

3 days ago
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NVIDIA Begins Requiring Signed GPU Firmware Images

tlhIngan Re:that's sorta the problem (189 comments)

Chips are designed for the max freq of the specification. If they fail that spec, they are retested at a lower spec, and if they pass that spec, they are sold at that frequency. Why else do you find many diffrent chips in the same family run at diffrent speeds?

Many times the chip is %100 capable of running at faster speeds, but they had too much of the higher bin, and not enough of the lower bin.

But yes, taking a chip that didn't pass a higher speed, flashing it to the firmware of its faster/more capable cousin, and then selling it as such is ripping people off.

Except in the world of GPUs, there are enough "crazy people" out there who want the best of the best. So much so that the top bin is almost always empty - so you'll never have top-end chips binned as lower spec ones.

At best, you'll find possibly the low end chips that could be mid-range chips, but given the low end generally isn't too popular when mid-range chips are the most common and most desired.

Shortages of the top-end cards isn't unheard of - either people who are still trying to make a go at it for bitcoins, or gamers. (And given the price of the high end, they could come down a bit before binning takes place - they're still big profit centers).

4 days ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

tlhIngan Re:Smart move moron (221 comments)

Considered that the article refers to him as a "worker" and not an "ex-employee" he may not have even been fired yet. If he wasn't fired before he definitely will be now and no unemployment benefits as it is termination for cause.

Well, he does have SOME benefits. He'd get free room and board and meals for a number of years now.

5 days ago

Submissions

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FCC warned not to take actions a Republican-led FCC would dislike

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a month ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Municipal broadband is in the news again — this time Chief of Staff Matthew Berry, speaking at the National Conference of State Legislatures, has endorsed states' right to ban municipal broadband networks and warned the (Democrat-led) FCC to not do anything that a future Republican led FCC would dislike. The argument is that municipal broadband discourages private investment in broadband communications, that taxpayer-funded projects are barriers to future infrastructure investment."
Link to Original Source
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Amazon confirms Hachette Spat Is to "Get A Better Deal"

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 4 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Last week we heard that Amazon was withdrawing Hachette books from its virtual shelves including allowing preorders of the new JK Rowling book. Amazon has responded to these allegations, and confirms that yes, they are purposefully preventing pre-orders and lowering stock in order to get a better deal from Hachette. Amazon recommends that in the meantime, customers either buy a used or new copy from their zShops or buy from a competitor. Amazon admits there is nothing wrong with Hachette's business dealings and that they are a generally good supplier."
Link to Original Source
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Glasshole Googlebombs Restaurant When Asked To Remove Glass

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 4 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Katy Kasmai loves her Google Glass. So she took great offense while dining at Feast (a restaurant in NYC) when staff members asked her to remove it citing patron privacy concerns. Her reaction? A call to arms to downvote the restaurant by leaving it nevative one-star reviews. Most were fake, few having actually visited Feast (or even living in NYC), all taking offense over other's concerns about surveillance. Of course, more violent methods of Glass removal have occurred in the past. Do over-entitled Glassholes potentially doom the future of the technology?"
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Google may have more of your email than you think

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 4 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Everyone knows about GMail — Google's web-based email service. And there are a few people who refuse to use it, citing privacy amongst other reasons. However, it turns out Google may have more of your email than you think. Benjamin Mako Hill was curious and analyzed his personal email. He found out that Google handled approximately half of his personal email, despite not having a GMail account. This includes email sent to him, as well as email he sends out. While it shows how popular Google's service is, it also shows how much potential information there is for Google and others (like the NSA) could sift through."
Link to Original Source
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Titanfall: No Day One DLC, Microtransactions or Season Passes

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 6 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "With big game releases come the usual trail of nickle and diming — from day one DLC, microtransactions, and season passes to get future maps. However, Respawn Entertainment, developers of Titanfall and Microsoft's heavily promoted next-gen Xbox One title (although also available two weeks later on Xbox360), has firmly stated there will be NO day one DLC, no microtransactions and no season passes. No paying a dollar for a pistol — you'll just have to fight your way through and earn it. What you get on the disc is everything — no paying for maps already included. Of course, this doesn't rule out future DLC, like additional maps, but it appears that everyone gets the same content on release day next week and no spending money to get upgrades without earning them."
Link to Original Source
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Google Admits G+ Created To Mine More User Information

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 7 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "In an admission not unexpected, Google admits to using Google+ as a means to gather more user information. Linking together various Google services to help keep track of your activities across the Internet, it's seen as Google knowing more about you than Facebook (and presumably to use the majority marketshare of advertising to sell you product). Google does not fear a mass exodus, believing that the more people want to use your products, the more you can get away with."
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PS4 vs. Xbox One - PS4 Users View 3 Times as Much Porn

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 8 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Well, one metric is in. If you want porn, apparently the PS4 is the machine to buy. SugarDVD, the Netflix of porn, reports 3 times as many PS4 users used its console app over the Xbox One. While it's tempting to guess that the PS4 sold 3:1 over the Xbox One, actual figures don't agree. SugarDVD CEO anticipates the numbers to change, as the Xbox One "offers a more seamless an interactive experience". One theory to the difference is the PS4 is aimed at hardcore gamers, while the Xbox One is aimed at more family pursuits."
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Valve's Steam removes its first game

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about 9 months ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Today marks the first day that Valve has removed a game completely off its service. Order of War: Challenge has been not only removed from the service, but it is the first to be removed completely from a user's library as well. Previously, when a game was removed from Steam, it was just removed — as long as a local copy exists in your library, you could always play it, back it up, reactivate it, etc, (similar to Apple's iTunes and App Store — it may be gone, but as long as a copy exists, it'll work). Now it appears that Valve has actually gone the next step alongside Amazon and Google and removed games from a library."
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A new way to monetize mobile apps - Bitcoins

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "App developers have long struggled with ways to make money from their apps — from selling them outright in the app stores to liberal use of in-app purchases and in-app advertising. The problem with in-app ads is obvious — for those on Android, it's the ridiculous amount of permissions required to support it. For those apps that use the Unity framework, Icoplay introduces a new way to make money — Bitcoins. Their Icominer plugin for Unity turns spare CPU cycles of a user's device into mining Bitcoins. It transparently works in the background and promises to not interfere with general gameplay. Unmentioned though is the impact to user's battery life and drain on system resources, especially given how iOS7 now (and Android always) supports full multitasking with background support. The plugin is still in development, and is supposed to cost around $80."
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Apple converting trial and pirated iWork, iLife and Aperture to full versions

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "One aspect about the new OS X Mavericks release was that all Apple produced software was to be downloadable and updatable through the Mac App Store. However, this has the obvious implication of what happens to users who bought the software before Mac App Store? Initial reports showed that the Mac App Store scanned your hard drive for the apps and offered to associate it with your Apple ID, and that the scanning even found trial and pirated versions and upgraded those to fully licensed versions. Even more interestingly, this is not a bug, and it appears Apple is turning a blind eye to the practice and giving away copies of iLife, iWork and Aperture to users who own trial or even pirated versions of the apps. Apple has also recently stopped providing downloadable trial versions of iLife, iWork and Aperture from their web site."
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Samsung Fudging Benchmarks Again on Galaxy Note 3

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  1 year,14 hours

tlhIngan (30335) writes "A few months ago, Samsung was caught gaming benchmarks on the Galaxy S4 (International version). They would lock the GPU at a higher-than-normal frequency when certain applications were run, including many popular Android benchmarking programs. These had the expected result of boosting the performance numbers. This time, the Galaxy Note 3 was caught doing the same thing, boosting CPU scores by 20% over the otherwise identical LG G2 (which uses the same SoC at the same clock). Samsung defends these claims by saying the other apps make use of such functionality, but Ars reversed-engineered the relevant code and discovered it applied only to benchmark applications. Even more damning was that the Note 3 was still faster than the G2 when run using "stealth" (basically renamed) versions of the benchmarking apps which did not get the boost."
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Despite global release, Breaking Bad heavily pirated

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "One reason that many people pirate TV shows is "it's not available in my country until months after it airs". Which is why the second episode of Breaking Bad's final season was aired globally within a few hours of each other yesterday evening. Despite this, many users still decided to download it than watch it when it aired locally. Australia users we the top, perhaps because it was on FoxTel. This was followed by US and Canada (who obviously got to see it when it aired), and the UK where Netflix had it within hours of the US premier. Fifth on the list was the Netherlands, where it had aired hours before the US premier on a public channel. It's obvious that despite the global release, the show was headed to top its previous highs in number of downloads. Could this spell the doom to future global releases, since the evidence is people just pirate them anyways?"
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Federal Judge Declares Bitcoin a Currency

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "An East Texas federal judge has concluded that Bitcoin is a currency (can be used as money) that can be regulated under American Law. The conclusion came during the trial of Trendon Shavers, who is accused of running the Bitcoin Savings and Trust (BTCST) as a Ponzi scheme. Shavers had argued that since the transactions were all done in Bitcoins, no money changed hands and thus the SEC has no jurisdiction. The judge found that since Bitcoins may be used to purchase goods and services, and more importantly, can be converted to conventional currencies, it is a form of currency and investors wishing to invest in the BTCST provided an investment of money, and thus the SEC may regulate such business"
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Google Play Downloads Beat Apple App Store

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "With Android devices outselling iOS ones 4-to-1 or more, it should come as no surprise that Google Play downloads exceeded Apple App Store downloads by 10% in the second quarter of 2013 for the first time since the stores were established 5 years ago. No reasons were given for why Android (which has been outselling iOS since 2010, if not earlier) took this long to overtake iOS in downloads."
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Microsoft allows indie self-publishing, debugging on retail Xbox One

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Microsoft was the last platform manufacturer to require that all games go through publishers, a much hated policy. Indeed, their approval process was one of the harshest around. But taking a page from Apple, Microsoft will allow indie developers to self publish, and allow retail Xbox One units to serve as developer consoles. Previously, self-publishing developers were relegated to the "Xbox Live Indie Arcade" section, as well as developer consoles often costing upwards of $10,000 with special requirements and NDAs. This puts Microsoft's Xbox One more in line with Apple's App Store, including Microsoft's new promise of a 14-day turnaround for approvals. Microsoft's retail debug console system is to work similarly to Apple's — that is, to run pre-release code, the individual consoles used have to be registered with Microsoft."
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Apple renews contract with Samsung over A-series processors

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "In an interesting move since Apple decided to partner with TSMC a few weeks ago, the Korea Economic Daily is reporting that Apple has re-signed a contract with Samsung to produce the A-series chips Apple uses to power its iPads, iPhones and iPods. TSMC is still to produce chips for Apple, though Samsung is poised to take over from 2015."
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DMCA Safe Harbor May Not Apply To Old Copyrighted Works

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year and a half ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "On Tuesday, the New York appellate court denied Grooveshark the DMCA safe harbor protection on songs like Johnny B. Goode. What happened was due to an oddity in the law, the DMCA does not apply to state-licensed copyrighted works (those copyrighted before February 15, 1972). What happened was Congress overhauled copyright law to make it a Federal matter, but all works prior to that date still come under common-law and state statutes. The end result is that Grooveshark does not have DMCA safe harbor protection for older works and may be sued for copyright infringement (barring other agreements, e.g., UMG and YouTube), even though they fully comply with the DMCA otherwise, taking down copyrighted materials. Grooveshark is a "music locker" service allowing users to upload music for others to listen to."
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Apple Did Not Censor Comic - Comic Distributor Did

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year and a half ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "A few days ago, Slashdot reported Apple banning sale of Comic Book Apps over gay sex images. It turns out that Apple was not the one behind the move, but that Comixology was the one who declined to publish it for iOS over fears it would not be allowed by Apple. In a blog post by Comixology, they stated that they were contacted by Apple who said that the content was fine. Saga #12 should be up in the iOS comic apps shortly."
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Bitcoin Goes Mainstream - Investments Banks Take Note, Offer Derivatives

tlhIngan tlhIngan writes  |  about a year and a half ago

tlhIngan (30335) writes "Bitcoin has reached a new high, where even the average Joe can now have them in their portfolio. Ars Technica reports on new forex markets, derivative offerings and investment bank holdings related to Bitcoin. Depending on your view of derivatives and their role in the financial crash, you will soon be able to trade in Bitcoin futures (and possibly options), hedge funds, and other interesting financial instruments centered on the currency. Whether or not these new investment options will stabilize or destabilize the currency even more is up in the air, but it might be an interesting take on what caused the crash of 2008. On an unrelated note, the Winklevoss twins (of Facebook idea fame) have stated they own approximately 1% of all bitcoins (approximately $11M) out there, stored on flash drives spread around the world."

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