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Comment Re:Tor? (Score 1) 186

The GP didn't say that people treat such things as damage; s/he said that the internet does. And that is the crucial difference - the internet will figure out a way to route around the "damage" so that even lazy animals will be able to access it unimpeded.

(Those with long memories will note that this isn't the first time TPB has been violated. And EVERY time, it's come back up, usually within hours.)

Comment Re:Always wear a condom (Score 1) 71

Precisely this. My first thought when reading the headline was the follow-up article: 'Japanese Hackers Testing USB Phone Attacks at Charging Stations in Public Transport Buses'.

There should be a USB condom with an identifier or specialised port that is required to use the USB chargers, and condoms should be supplied.

Comment Re:Great! (Score 1) 162

While on the surface you're correct, if properly implemented, this technology should still be usable with NFC, as it doesn't rely on the security of the NFC link to be secure.

For one, an NFC link can only be exploited through sniffing in the immediate physical vicinity of the accessing device (and statistically-speaking, few attackers are financially capable of being within 10m of their victim). For another, the real security of authentication comes from the crypto chip (think embedded smartcard or TPM-type module).

Contrast this to a USB device, where USB over TCP becomes a true security risk. It's possible for an attacker to mount a USB device over a WAN link in a manner indistinguishable from a local device, thereby co-opting the credential store. (Though of course this is supposing that the NFC connector is not itself USB-connected...)

Now the question of how to authenticate securely to the NFC device itself is another question entirely. But that's one for another thread.

Comment Re:I am amazed that there is no current limiter (Score 3, Insightful) 243

'I'd argue that the device would be far more destructive if it pumped -12v instead of -240v since it would be able to output a lot more current.'

IANAEE, but as I understand it: high current can cause heat damage and possibly fires, but high voltage can jump lines and cause failure in more than just the circuit it was introduced to.

Both are potentially (no pun intended) very bad. But a high voltage spike will cause much more widespread damage in a very short span. This is why we treat static electricity (high voltage, low current) with such respect around electronics.

Comment Re: Sorry - whose car is this? (Score 1) 305

This is not technically true. The same protection is offered to all products in all industries via the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. The difference here is that some vehicle companies tried to do an end run around it and were slammed by the FTC for doing so.

I wonder if Tesla will try to claim that they do the maintenance for free and are therefore exempt. But I think (and hope) there will be a quick and considerable backlash against them, both from consumers and the courts.

Comment Re:Before copyright, no credit and no money (Score 1) 219

The idea is that a limited monopoly for copying enables the artist to derive some (non-joyous) benefit from their endeavour, thus allowing them to create more art, since they're not busy using all their time working on something else simply so they can eat.

Joy is a wonderful byproduct of being an artist, but it doesn't feed anyone.

Comment Re:Drake Equation == 1 (Score 1) 258

Alternatively, (as far as I understand it) if you can figure out how to bypass inertia, you don't need acceleration. If we can find a way to manipulate our inertial reference frame directly, we can skip the whole 'acceleration' business altogether and change velocities instantaneously.

Interestingly, this ability would also enable us to ignore gravity completely. So I think we should get started on it immediately.

Comment Re: Microsoft... (Score 1) 292

This is my single biggest complaint about the iPhone - there is NO option to prevent a device from requesting play to start. I rented a Camry recently (though I've had the exact same issue with Ford/Lincoln, GM, and other brands) and had to add an Activator trigger upon bluetooth connection to enable StopPlayin', wait 15 seconds, and disable it so it wouldn't blow my ears out and scare the shite out of me when I started the car.

Of course, I'd also like to draw and quarter the langering fuckwanks who decided that the appropriate behaviour when an audio source is disconnected is to IMMEDIATELY START BLASTING THE RADIO AT THE SAME VOLUME AS THE LAST SOURCE with no option to disable it.

Comment Re:Doll. Fin. (Score 2) 305

Learning the American style of trying to stuff all punctuation inside quotes always seemed like a sort of madness to me.

Here is an interesting read that might broaden your stylo-linguistic horizons.

There are so many instances when placing punctuation outside the quotation punctuation makes infinitely more sense, 'style guides' be damned.

Comment Re:one better... (Score 1) 48

I'm surprised no one has mentioned the Mophie Space case yet... battery and storage for iPhones in one.

Unfortunately, the Mophie app (which is required for file management, same as the SanDisk) is a broken piece of absolute shit. My mophie has 64GB of storage, but will only manage 10k photos. (I have over 13k on my phone.) But it runs poorly even in the best of conditions.

I am horribly disappointed that SanDisk is only making this for the 6 series phones. It could have been a contender...

Comment Re: Not secure? (Score 1) 82

Well-put. Perhaps the caveat should be the number of contributors, rather than simple popularity. (Though I do imagine those numbers are somewhat correlated in open-source projects.)

Some software faults are tremendously obscure. In fact, there are many that exist that will *never* be discovered. It's just a fact of life.

But I think we agree that open-source software has the inherent potential to be more secure by its nature than its closed-source counterparts.

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