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Visual Studio 2015 Supports CLANG and Android (Emulator Included)

tom229 Re: The only way MS gets more apps in their store (192 comments)

I would say it partly is apple's model. Perhaps not in software services, but certainly in electronic distribution of software. The amount of money they make in their "app store" and iTunes has to be monumental. What they lack in data-mining software services they certainly make up for in convincing everyone that their products are "cool", "just work", and are worth spending an extra 30% on.

about a week ago
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WhatsApp To Offer End-to-End Encryption

tom229 Telegram (93 comments)

Do you have a current favorite for encrypted online chat?

Telegram. It's open source, uses end to end encryption, and, unlike whatsapp, supports multiple connected clients at a time - including desktop clients for all platforms.

Of course you'll be hard pressed to find anyone on telegram expect my wife and I. Kids don't care about security, or source code.

about a week ago
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Intel Announces Major Reorg To Combine Mobile and PC Divisions

tom229 Re:AMD wins again (75 comments)

I'm not trying to be a troll or flame here, so please don't take it like that. But, you may be comparing AMD processors and Intel in the same price range. Because the highest passmark bench results for laptops certainly belong to the 4th generation Intel mobile processors.

You must also work in an area of the country that is either really ahead, or really behind. I'm Sr sysadmin for a medium sized company and I haven't encountered a single person - outside of a geologist or engineer that needs real power - who prefers a desktop to a laptop in many years.

about a week ago
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Intel Announces Major Reorg To Combine Mobile and PC Divisions

tom229 Re:We need a business phone!! (75 comments)

The phone doesn't necessarily have to be x86 based, but it needs to be designed with business in mind. You'd be hard pressed to argue that either your Lumina, or iPhone is designed with business in mind. They are designed with the primary concern of taking pictures and uploading them to facebook.

In the last 5 years, all work being done has been focused on the consumer. Phones now have pedometers, FM radio chips, and IR transmitters, but we're no closer to having real business support. This extends way beyond reading your emails and spreadsheets. We need functionality like directory integration. Let me extend the policies of my directory with mobile-based ADMX policies. Give me a smart VPN service that's also configurable through policy. How about built in device management instead of having to rely on third party "crapps" that use some cloud storage bullshit and require me to pay /user/month?

There's SO much work to be done with regards to mobile computing in business environments. All the sales people and psuedo-technical bloggers keep telling us that mobile is the future. If it is, at some point, someone's going to have to pay attention to business.

about a week ago
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Intel Announces Major Reorg To Combine Mobile and PC Divisions

tom229 We need a business phone!! (75 comments)

Intel needs to get behind an organized effort to bring us a business-grade mobile device. That's the only low hanging fruit left. Take the following excerpt I pulled from an article:

Let's rewind to 2007. RIM owns the mobile space for business, while consumer devices are primarily "dumb phones". In comes Apple, flush with iPod money, and looking for the next evolution of it's highly profitable device. The solution is simple: why carry an iPod and a phone? Thus, the iPhone is born.

In a single generation the iPhone brings massive innovation to the market. The device is targeted at Apple's primary demographic: the consumer, but the features are so beyond what is currently available that this type of smartphone doesn't take long to become a favorite in the business commnuity as well.

The large touch screen destroys the conventional track ball/pad, allowing the user to display more text, and use multi-touch to navigate more efficiently. The full webkit browser completely destroys the WAP-based dinosaurs giving the user a desktop grade browser at their finger tips. The user can carry all forms of media with them and display it at their whim. And, finally, and most importantly, the design of the operating system is centered around a robust API which doesn't take long to bloom into a wealth of independent applications that let the user do things they never before thought possible.

The response at RIM is unforunately short-sighted. RIM sees the device as a "toy". It sees it as a consumer-grade flash in the pan that will eventually collapse in the face of the established security and familiarity of their Enterprise Server platform, and BBM. RIM does opt to borrow some of the innovations - like the touch screen - and implement it their own, poorly advised ways but, ultimately, things at RIM continue as usual.

Now let's fast forward to 2013. The market has spoken. Blackberry market share is down to single digits and the company needs to do something quick to turn things around. They've been working for years on something that is supposed to change our lives and we're finally going to get to see it. What they unveil is astonishing: a consumer-targeted device.

The playing field in consumer-grade devices is now beyond saturated. We've had Google, Apple, and even Microsoft all battling each-other for the last 5 years. Innovation year-over-year is staggering. Why blackberry decided to try to compete in this market is baffling. What's worse, is they released an inferior product, on their own independent platform, that - of course - is going to gather no developer support in an already saturated market.

So here we are, 2014 and - still - no business-grade device in the mobile market. We have a dizzying amount of consumer-grade choice, but nothing properly designed with business in mind. In response I would like to say the following to the entire tech community involved in mobile device development:

We're here. We have money. We have a lot more money than all these teenage kids. Please, please, I want to spend it. Someone give me a business-grade mobile phone and tablet. Important things to me are: checking my email, security, centralized device management, and integration with existing business technologies. Reward: see Microsoft's stock price in the 90's.

about a week ago
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Visual Studio 2015 Supports CLANG and Android (Emulator Included)

tom229 Re: The only way MS gets more apps in their store (192 comments)

Also, hopefully MS has realized - like Google does - that the future isn't in software licensing. The future is in electronic distribution, and software services that collect information. It's not a great future, but it has been created by a population that is willing to trade their privacy for free stuff. It is what it is. I wouldn't be surprised to see them start to give Windows away in the future.

about two weeks ago
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Delivering Malicious Android Apps Hidden In Image Files

tom229 Re: So you have to install an app... (113 comments)

What confuses me is that android has the exact same walled garden approach by default. You have to manually allow "untrusted source" installs. Apple, of course, doesn't allow this because then they wont get their 30% cut (it has nothing to do with security - sorry folks).

If you want to do this on ios, you jailbreak , and make your device more functional, but arguably less secure if you don't know what you're doing, or you're some sort of chimp.

Talking about security used to mean how free from vulnerabilities and exploits a platform was. It would seem things have devolved into a conversation about which platform more readily allows the town dullard to shoot himself in the foot. It's a political conversation indeed.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: Best Books On the Life and Work of Nikola Tesla?

tom229 PBS (140 comments)

I didn't check if anyone recommended this yet, but pbs made a documentary "Tesla - The Master of Lightening". I thought it was amazing, and it's available on US Netflix.

about a month and a half ago
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Will Windows 10 Finally Address OS Decay?

tom229 Re: Here's the solution (577 comments)

Arch, good guess. You're obviously using something debian based, probably Ubuntu. I haven't used Ubuntu in some years, but I don't remember them actively supporting the use of a ports-like system. It would certainly be possible in Ubuntu, but without community involvement, rather pointless.

Give Arch a try in a VM. I've yet to encounter a piece of software that hasn't had the source converted to a make package by someone in the AUR. Using the AUR is as simple as downloading the tarball, extracting, running makepkg, resolving dependencies, then pacman -S .

Oh, and don't use the base arch installer unless you have a lot of time on your hands. Go with something like ArchBang.

about a month and a half ago
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Snowden's Tough Advice For Guarding Privacy

tom229 No Google (210 comments)

Living without [a google account] is certainly possible. I've been doing it for years. I would agree that "app" developers seem obsessed with publishing their offerings through a single medium, that takes 30%, and requires their users to buy into the google/apple ecosystem. However, I blame this on the typical "app" developer being a mindless dullard, addicted to the status quo. The entire IT spectrum has been infested with these types of late. It's been frustrating.

about a month and a half ago
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Cyanogen Inc. Turns Down Google, Seeing $1 Billion Valuation

tom229 Re: Google just pissy (107 comments)

While the Android core operating system is free, the Android branding and "Google Apps" are not. In order to use either of these on your version of Android you need a license from an authorized testing facility that ensures the GApps suite functions properly. This is Google's one catch to providing the world with a free mobile operating system, and I think that's probably fair.

Regardless, I think many people wouldn't be happy if cm automatically included GApps, since the lack of that proprietary spyware is the main reason to use it.

about 2 months ago
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Will Windows 10 Finally Address OS Decay?

tom229 Re: Here's the solution (577 comments)

make uninstall Also compiling from source should rarely be necessary. Most modern distributions will include a ports like system that will allow you to compile source into a fake root, use the information gathered to build a package, and then install the package with your package manager. This ensures everything is cleaned up properly upon package removal. Of course even building a package for the software is probably unnecessary as it's very likely someone has already done it for you. Linux' package management is vastly superior to both Windows and osx (don't you just drag a folder into the garbage can? Give me a break). You just have to know what you're doing.

about 2 months ago
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Quickflix Wants Netflix To Drop Australian VPN Users

tom229 Re:Joke's on them (172 comments)

Much cheaper than VPN too. I use one, and have been for the last year or two. I've always been curious how it works though. My current theory is that it must exploit a function of the netflix protocol that uses a separate domain to authenticate the stream than it does to stream the content. Thus your dns provider can detect dns lookups to this address (lets say authenticate.netflix.com), proxy the authentication for you, and then let the stream between you and netflix's servers commence directly once youre authenticated.

Could anyone elaborate and provide a complete low level understanding of how this works?

about 2 months ago
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Text While Driving In Long Island and Have Your Phone Disabled

tom229 The Regulation Bureaucracy (364 comments)

Laws that prohibit you from being on your phone while driving are doing nothing but further spiraling the nanny-state out of control.

Here in Alberta Canada we have the province now wasting even more money on this silly regulation with advertisements that beg people not to "crotch watch". Of course this is referring to the fact that everyone just tries to hide their texting-while-driving behavior which, ironically, makes the practice even more dangerous then when you could do it in the open.

But who am I to fight the prevailing mentality that we need to regulate away every single issue with society, no matter how minor? The actual people making the decisions have to be smarter than me right? I guess that's why a third of my income goes to pay their salary along with the monstrous bureaucracy created by all this regulatory nonsense.

about 2 months ago
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DARPA Wants To Kill the Password

tom229 Re:Passwords don't need to be killed (383 comments)

I was going to post this but you beat me to it. I already use this method, somewhat, for anything that supports 2-factor auth. Weak and/or easy to remember password accompanied by a code generated from my private key.

Anyone looking to change the paradigm needs to remember there's only 3 ways to secure things: something you know, something you are, and something you have. With that in mind what you've suggested is the most user friendly and secure way to go about it.

The only other suggestion I would have is a paradigm shift to passphrases instead of short passwords. But I can hardly take credit for that idea.

about 3 months ago
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UK Police Won't Comment On The Tracking of People's Phone Calls

tom229 Re: It's not extra-judicial (52 comments)

No true revolution can be held up by a single man. We'd all have to be leaders.

That being said, privacy violations will never spawn a revolution. The average person is motivated by short term conveniences, not long term ideals. Keep the population fed, busy, and entertained and you should be able to get away with anything.

about 4 months ago
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Snowden Granted 3 More Years of Russian Residency

tom229 Re: Snowden is a traitor (266 comments)

While it suits your irrational argument to argue the law in black and white terms, you have to know that the law is far from that.

If a criminal breaks into your house, assaults you, you shoot him, and he happens to die, we don't call that murder and give you a more lenient sentence because you were defending yourself. We call that self defence.

Equally so, technically what Snowden did "broke the law". But that's a pretty obtuse way to look at it considering the greater good he achieved by demonstrating that our own government is, and has been, breaking the law.

What he did was in defence of our nation. He has more courage and character in his nail clippings than you have in your whole body. Now turn off Fox news and develop your own opinion.

about 4 months ago
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The Oculus Rift DK2: In-Depth Review (and Comparison To DK1)

tom229 Also announced (54 comments)

future features include "single sign on" via retina scan using your Facebook account. This will help us strategically align corporate offerings right into your eyeball based on our patented technology that tracks each and every movement, interest, and desire of you and your friends.

Seriously, the Facebook acquisition already ruined any potential this product might have had.

about 4 months ago
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Google To Stop Describing Games With In-App Purchases As 'Free'

tom229 Re:Really people? (139 comments)

Even though a lot of those things you listed aren't free (Chrome data mining, IE requires a windows license), I will submit that it's not entirely accurate that nothing is free. Charity is certainly free.

Regardless, I was making a generalization. And every person should live day-to-day based on the assumption that nothing is free. Then we can go back to having an informed, intelligent, and responsible society that doesn't require babysitting via regulation in every aspect of their lives. I don't really appreciate the prevailing mentality that whenever there's even a minor issue in society, we regulate it away. Regulation creates bureaucracy, and trust me, in the long run you don't want more government bureaucracy.

about 4 months ago

Submissions

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Jar Jar a Major Character in New Star Wars Movie

tom229 tom229 writes  |  about a year ago

tom229 (1640685) writes "Due to there recent acquisition of the Star Wars Franchise, a movie is already in production. Disney Starwars team has decided to go back to the basics in their approach to this new movie. An insider source has said that Naboo will be the main setting for this new blockbuster. Also Jar Jar Binks will be featured as a major character of the new movie."
Link to Original Source
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Ask Slashdot: How do I protect my business from the poor decisions at Microsoft?

tom229 tom229 writes  |  about a year ago

tom229 (1640685) writes "I am the senior sysadmin for a medium sized business (about 100-150 end users). Currently we use redundant VMWare ESX hosts running a series of Microsoft Server 2008 R2 servers. All desktops are Windows 7 and nearly everyone heavily relies on Office 2010 for their day-to-day work.

Given the recent change of direction at Microsoft, it has me worried over how heavily we rely on them. They are already forcing me to buy OEM licencing for Server 2012 with downgrade rights to 2008R2. How long until this is no longer an option? How long until I'm forced to have an XBox interface on my server machines?

I'm not naive enough to assume I can migrate my users from their dependency on MS Office just yet, but I am interested in migrating the core infrastructure away from Microsoft Active Directory and Microsoft Exchange as a good first step.

I'm decently versed in the debian flavors of linux so I would easily adapt to a solution based on something like Ubuntu Server. I discovered with the help of google that Samba 4 aims to do this, but it is currently in alpha and some popular projects built around it have already been abandoned. There's also a product called Zentyal, but I'm a bit confused by their monthly pricing model.

Are any of my fellow sysadmins having the same concerns? I can't in good conscience have all my eggs in Microsoft's basket any longer. What is the best way to transition from a corporate MS environment?"

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