×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Anonymous No More: Your Coding Style Can Give You Away

wolrahnaes Re:Can they do it with corporate code? (218 comments)

Similarly I was thinking this would probably be defeated by a "minifier", obfuscator, or anything along those lines. There are dozens to choose from for most languages and it would be trivial for anyone attempting to remain anonymous to use them on their releases.

If you want the code to remain usable, there are tools to enforce a standard style instead, in which case just set it up with rules based on a popular project if your language of choice doesn't have a specific style. At that point you're down to comments and variable names. Don't get fancy with either and I'd bet the identifiability would go down significantly.

2 days ago
top

The Untold Story of the Invention of the Game Cartridge

wolrahnaes Re:Selectavision (60 comments)

I actually have one of those. My grandma found it in her sister's attic when cleaning the place out and figured I'd like it. I thought it was a laserdisc player when she described it to me, so I was really surprised to find that it was actually a vinyl-based video format.

Video quality isn't much worse than '80s VHS.

about a week ago
top

Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

wolrahnaes Re:No (570 comments)

So what happens when your hard drive goes? That's the "end of the lifetime of your device?"

No one can say for sure of course outside of Redmond, but if I had to guess I'd say it would work similarly to the existing Windows Activation schemes. A hard drive swap means basically nothing.

I had never had a reactivation required until just recently when I switched from AMD to Intel. Swapping between AMD processors and boards (Athlon X2 3800+ to Athlon 6000+ to Phenom X6 1045) didn't trigger it, nor did uncountable disk and addon board changes, but going to a Core i7 finally did it.

about two weeks ago
top

Microsoft Reveals Windows 10 Will Be a Free Upgrade

wolrahnaes Re:No (570 comments)

From the official Windows Blog: http://blogs.windows.com/blogg...

We announced that a free upgrade for Windows 10 will be made available to customers running Windows 7, Windows 8.1, and Windows Phone 8.1 who upgrade in the first year after launch.*

This is more than a one-time upgrade: once a Windows device is upgraded to Windows 10, we will continue to keep it current for the supported lifetime of the device – at no additional charge.

It sounds likely that there will be some kind of a subscription offered in the future, but those who use this upgrade offer are set for the lifetime of the device.

about two weeks ago
top

Sony Thinks You'll Pay $1200 For a Digital Walkman

wolrahnaes Re:Ha (391 comments)

I remember a time when Sony was a maker of quality consumer electronics. They were usually more expensive than the competition, but usually better made as well. Then at some point in the '90s they sort of followed Bose down the path of compromising engineering and quality for marketing more and more while keeping their prices the same. Since the death of the CRT and Discman I can't think of a Sony product I've been able to comfortably recommend over its competition for it's primary purpose.

The PS2 and PS3 both had a time where they were a great choice if you wanted a player for their respective movie formats before the ultra-cheap players hit the market, but I'd never recommend either as a game console unless you are tied to the platform by exclusive games or more of your friends you want to play with having one.

about three weeks ago
top

Sony Thinks You'll Pay $1200 For a Digital Walkman

wolrahnaes Re:Ha (391 comments)

I don't know the answer for sure but this is Sony, is there really a question?

about three weeks ago
top

Why We're Not Going To See Sub-orbital Airliners

wolrahnaes Re:huh? (300 comments)

I think the main reason supersonic passenger flights are unlikely to make a return is what you're using right now. The internet has eliminated a lot of the business cases where such things could actually be justified rather than just being a novelty/luxury. It used to actually matter that you could wake up in New York, have a meeting in London, and be back home in time for dinner. Now most situations that would have previously required such things can be done over a videoconference and a few emails.

Yeah there are still a few situations where getting a person or airplane-carryable thing across the ocean in three hours is worth the extra cost, but for the most part Concorde was down to the novelty by the 2000s. Those who cared about luxury would more likely be on a jumbo with the semiprivate or private seat/suite arrangements and those who cared about speed were making things happen digitally.

about three weeks ago
top

Who's Responsible When Your Semi-Autonomous Shopping Bot Purchases Drugs Online?

wolrahnaes Re:Wall Street Precedent (182 comments)

When a Wall Street program loses money for the owners, they eat it.

Not always...

http://money.cnn.com/2010/05/0...
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/a040...

Not saying this is common, Knight provides a good example in the other direction and I honestly don't care enough about the markets to know of anything that didn't make national news, just that it seems it depends on the situation.

If I fuck up and code a program that goes out and buys or trades and buys illegal shit, then it's my fault for being stupid.

Legally of course this depends on the jurisdiction, IANAL. Morally I believe this is very grey area and depends primarily on intent. Obviously it's sort of hard to judge intent in most cases, though in this case unleashing it specifically on a "Dark Web" type site does imply at least some knowledge that it'll happen these days.

Then again I have to imagine part of the point of this exhibit was to counter that assumption, that all these sites are good for are illegal things.

By displaying them in such a conspicuous location also changes things compared to if one had tried to use "the computer did it" as an excuse when caught with the same things in their home.

Basically it's probably legally wrong, but I'd have a hard time being convinced that they should actually be punished for it.

Or let's put it this way, I code a program that looks for and downloads kiddie porn. Cops nab me and I just say, "Oopsie. The robot did it, not me!" So, I should get off...I mean let go?

Again depends on the context and the intent. If you wrote a bot that went out looking for anything it thinks is porn to display automatically in an art installation and it happened to come across kiddie porn, it'd certainly be illegal in a lot of jurisdictions. That said, due to the context of displaying the results of a search automatically as art I'd still be unconvinced that punishment is appropriate. The same excuse deployed by someone caught with a collection of images on their own machine should get laughed out of court and them right in to jail.

about three weeks ago
top

Nest Will Now Work With Your Door Locks, Light Bulbs and More

wolrahnaes Re:But... (163 comments)

At least the first generation of Nest units have Zigbee radios, but they've never been enabled as far as I can find. I have no idea whether the second generation units kept the extra radio.

about three weeks ago
top

US Internet Offers 10Gbps Fiber In Minneapolis

wolrahnaes Re:The wireless router is the bottleneck. (110 comments)

A PC Engines APU1C can "route" (NAT/gateway) around 6-700mbit/sec with pfSense on a 1GHz AMD A-series CPU with no hardware acceleration. That's nothing, hardware-wise. It has Realtek network cards which aren't great from a performance standpoint. I don't disagree that 10G+ service is going to take a fair bit of hardware compared to average home "router" hardware, but that's because those boxes are trash for the most part.

about a month ago
top

Samsung Announces Production of 20nm Mobile LPDDR4, Faster Than Desktop DDR4

wolrahnaes Re:What's with the clock rate masturbation? (42 comments)

Higher clocks isn't actually a desired feature, it's what you have to do if the bus is too narrow and you're too cheap do make it wider. If they could afford it, they'd definitely pick a wider bus before higher clocks (and therefore more energy consumption).

It's not always cost that limits bus widths. See PCI for example. They tried widening it (64 bit) and clocking it up (66, 133, and very rarely even beyond), but what won out is a much higher clocked serial interface (PCI Express).

Skew in a parallel interface is a bitch, plus the number of traces required on the board to support a wide bus. There's only so many connections you can practically run in to any given chip package without getting unmanageable.

about a month ago
top

Many DDR3 Modules Vulnerable To Bit Rot By a Simple Program

wolrahnaes Re:good news for ECC memory makers (138 comments)

ECC does not mitigate it, but it will detect the problem where non-ECC memory will happily keep on operating with the corrupted data.

For the standard car analogy, consider tire pressure monitoring systems. They won't stop you from getting a flat, but they'll let you know you have a slow leak where you might otherwise keep driving until it's bad enough that you notice otherwise. By that time the damage is done and you probably need a new tire.

about a month ago
top

"Infrared Curtain" Brings Touchscreen Technology To Cheap Cars

wolrahnaes Re:This is So old... (123 comments)

Seriously, I'm pretty sure the first touch screen I ever used back in the early '90s used basically the same method. You didn't have to actually touch the screen, since it was a CRT and was usually curved where the sensor plane was flat.

about a month ago
top

Researchers Discover SS7 Flaw, Allowing Total Access To Any Cell Phone, Anywhere

wolrahnaes Re:LOL. (89 comments)

SS7 dates to the '70s. Pretty much no communications protocols intended for general use were designed with even the thought of security at the time. The number of players in the game was small enough that any bad behavior could be rooted out fairly easily.

Look at email for the same basic problem, it was designed with the assumption that the parties involved could be trusted because on the networks it was designed for that was generally the case. Over time the trustworthiness of the network was degraded for reasons both good and bad, but the common protocols had already been established by then and it's a long road to change.

I won't argue that there probably has been some "influence" on decisions about adopting more secure replacements, but it's a bit tinfoil hattish to claim that the protocols themselves were intentionally made insecure when it's well documented that most protocols from that era just weren't designed to try to be secure in the first place.

about a month and a half ago
top

Microsoft Files a Copyright Infringement Lawsuit For Activating Pirated Software

wolrahnaes Re:Such lawsuits are not rare - usually done by BS (268 comments)

Individual is the key word there. The BSA (and thus I agree by extension Microsoft) has a well documented track record of suing companies using pirated software. If you take them at their word that there were a large number of different devices activating those products from that IP address it seems reasonable that the same is exactly what's happening here. Individual pirates would be like the RIAA and MPAA going after actual people and families.

Or that IP is an exit point for Tor or a VPN or whatever and whoever's actually doing it is somewhere else, who can say.

about 2 months ago
top

Debian Forked Over Systemd

wolrahnaes Re:Unix tool philosopy == Good Thing (647 comments)

When you say Solaris 'did pretty well', what do you mean by that? It doesn't seem to be doing at all well in terms of popularity in the data center. Same with OSX, its use in the data center is MINIMAL.

Probably that leaving init scripts behind worked out for them. Their lack of presence in the datacenter doesn't really have anything to do with their init system but instead their attachment to proprietary hardware which offered little advantage over a generic PC either whitebox or from your preferred OEM running Linux or your BSD of choice. Likewise for OS X.

about 2 months ago
top

Debian Forked Over Systemd

wolrahnaes Re:Wow... (647 comments)

Because babies and bathwater and such.

A lot of people are convinced that systemd is the devil, so because humans are pretty stupid about this kind of thing they decide that if systemd is "them" then "us" must be shitty-ass init scripts.

Init scripts fucking suck no matter the application. Desktop, server, whatever. No dependencies, no standard format for easy maintenance, and a mess of either hardcoded paths or variables you may have to chase through multiple scripts to find. Anything that replaces them with a more sane system that realizes I have multiple cores and the web server couldn't care less whether OpenSSH is running is a good thing.

about 2 months ago
top

Gilbert, AZ Censors Biology Books the Old-Fashioned Way

wolrahnaes Re:Slashdot, once again... (289 comments)

But if it was about questioning global warming info being removed there would be crickets.

Well yeah, because the only place such discussion would likely be would be in a science book, and what's in a science book should be supported by evidence. The kind of "questioning global warming" that people like you mean is not supported by evidence, it's distorting evidence, and does not belong in a science book.

As Colbert put best, "reality has a well-known liberal bias". It comes from being willing to actually ask questions and observe the world to find our answers, rather than an unwavering loyalty to an ideology. In this case these fucknuts are taking their religious beliefs, based on nothing, and prioritizing them over actual science. That's not political in any way, that's just fucking idiots. Unfortunately for those who are politically conservative but aren't insane the "conservative" party has spent 20 years courting the religious morons in every possible way and happily set themselves up for this kind of shit.

about 2 months ago
top

Mathematicians Study Effects of Gerrymandering On 2012 Election

wolrahnaes Re:What Does This Mean (413 comments)

There were 13 seats up for grabs in North Carolina in 2012. In the real election, Republicans won nine of these with Democrats getting the remaining four. In Duke's simulations using randomly generated districts the majority of the time more seats went to Democrats than Republicans, averaging apparently in the 7.x range for Democrats and 5.x for Republicans. Almost never did it swing so far in favor of Republicans as to even approach the real world outcome.

Since the real world outcome is unlikely in a map generated by an unbiased algorithm it supports the claim that the districts were drawn in a biased fashion.

about 2 months ago
top

Ask Slashdot: What's the Most Hackable Car?

wolrahnaes Not sure about most hackable, but... (195 comments)

The BMW E46 (3 series between 1999 and 2005) and other BMWs from that era all use an in-vehicle network called "I-Bus" which operates things like the windows, the sound system, the lights, and more. Most non-critical vehicle functions are exposed there and are fairly well documented by the community. You only need an inexpensive adapter that looks like a serial port as far as the computer's concerned to access it.

IIRC the first generation or two of Mini as well as a few Land Rovers of the time that used BMW engines also have I-Bus.

Newer models have an optical system called MOST running the infotainment system, I'm not sure where the windows and lights are connected in these days.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

wolrahnaes hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

top

Wear your damn seatbelts!

wolrahnaes wolrahnaes writes  |  more than 10 years ago

Today I rolled my truck. I walked away with only a few scrapes. I probably would have been thrown out of the shattered side window and had the truck land on top of me had I not been belted in.

Moral: Seatbelts DO save lives, so always wear them

P.S. Trolling ACs can skip the seatbelts. No one likes them anyways ;P

top

For once the MPAA got it right.....

wolrahnaes wolrahnaes writes  |  more than 11 years ago

The reason movie sales are down isn't because of piracy, it's because people see it, realize that it sucks, and tell their friends...

Maybe they've realized that most people who download movies will go see it in theatres or buy the DVD if they like it. The rest probably wouldn't have bought it anyways.

**SARCASM**
Just Announced: The CMPA (Crappy Movie Protection Act)
People are no longer allowed to say anything bad about a movie until the person they are talking to has already paid to see the movie.
**END SARCASM**

I'm really not sure if that was a joke or not...Disney has a lot of congresspeople on their payroll...

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?