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Comment There's your "careful phrasing" (Score 4, Insightful) 139

I want to be absolutely clear that we have never worked with any government agency from any country to create a backdoor in any of our products or services. We have also never allowed access to our servers. And we never will.

Yeah, that's reassuring. Except, what's being described here falls under neither of those categories. It's not a backdoor, and it doesn't require providing access to Apple's servers. So, Apple is blithely sidestepping the issue with careful phrasing, denying only activities about which they were not asked, while artfully ignoring those about which they were.

Comment Shades of Archer (Score 1) 277

Sterling Archer: I thought you put it on autopilot!

Rip Riley: It just maintains course and altitude! It doesn't know how to find THE ONLY AIRSTRIP WITHIN A THOUSAND MILES SO IT CAN LAND ITSELF WHEN IT NEEDS GAS!

Sterling Archer: Then I, uh... misunderstood the concept.

Seriously, though, the problem for Tesla isn't just that people will misuse the system. The problem is, even when the system isn't at fault, and the driver knows it wasn't at fault, there will still be a subset of people who will try to lie and blame the system in order to weasel out of fines/criminal charges/general responsibility, because it's new enough, controversial enough, and makes for a sufficiently good sound bite that some media outlet will start screaming bloody murder about it being Tesla's fault, and other media outlets will pick it up and run with it without any form of fact checking.

Comment What's the point? (Score 2) 34

What in the world could be the point of this? Suppose the deal goes through as described. From the security researcher's perspective, the code is already in the wild, downloaded repeatedly. Could easily be forked to a new project, hosted by someone else, etc. It will be back up and online the moment he takes it down. From the malware author's perspective, if he gives up all the existing keys, he loses his current "market", but he can just change the keys, and redeploy his malware. So, the malware author gains nothing because the project will undoubtedly remain online. The security researcher gains nothing, since the malware author can just deploy a new version with different keys. So, the exchange does nothing but generate headlines. Nothing else accomplished.

Comment Re:I won't notice (Score 1) 332

To quote the article you linked,

What the chart shows is that, for a 50-inch screen, the benefits of 720p vs. 480p start to become apparent at viewing distances closer than 14.6 feet and become fully apparent at 9.8 feet

So, if we are to accept the conclusions of this article, we shouldn't really be able to tell the difference between 480p and 720p until we get to roughly 10-12 feet. That's ridiculous, I could tell a 720p from a 480p image from twice that distance. If you can't, double-check that 20/20 of yours, may be time for a new prescription.

Comment Re:I won't notice (Score 2) 332

Permit me to disagree. I have not so hot vision (contacts, -4.50), and, unlike many people I know, I can clearly distinguish between, say, 720p and 1080p. I just moments ago installed my new 55" 4k Vizio (P series ftw!), and the difference is remarkable. It's fairly noticeable on upscaled 1080p content, but plug in a computer and push some real 4k (read: games), and the difference is remarkable. At a viewing distance of about 10 feet, the difference in clarity is readily apparent. And I'm not alone in this regard. The friends who helped me install this beast are fellow videophiles, and we were all blown away by the difference. I'm about to hop on to netflix to start up my subscription again (haven't had an active netfilx account in years) just so I can stream their 4k content (already have amazon prime), and I'm eagerly awaiting 4k blu ray (not that I'll spend much time swapping discs, as with current blu ray, they'll go in the drive just once, to be ripped, and then get carefully filed away).

Also, I heard many of your arguments years ago when HD was first rearing its head in the market. "There's no content, no one will buy it", "no one will buy it due to lack of content, so no one will make content", "current resolutions are completely sufficient, and no one will see a difference anyway". All wrong. Give it a year or two. Even if 4k blu ray doesn't take off particularly well, expect to see more and more streaming/downloadable 4k content. And, a quick perusal of 4k video on torrent sites show that 4k is already being pushed by the same people who have pushed every other major advance in home video for the last few decades: the porn industry. I couldn't find any 4k movies to download, but if you want to watch people screw in 4k, the future is now.

I'll go ahead and get off your lawn now.

Comment Re:Spidey: Stingray Detector App for Android (Score 3, Interesting) 253

This is interesting. I was just discussing this with my friend last night, and proposed this exact solution. However, it's still a reactive solution. It will detect that you may be the victim of a stingray attack, but it won't stop your phone from connecting in the first place. But there is another potential solution, I just don't have enough experience developing android roms to say how it would have to be implemented. The idea is this: maintain a database of all know cell towers (your link to OpenCellID would do nicely, they offer their DB for download). Using a rooted or fully custom ROM, such as cyanogenmod, have the phone compare any new tower to the database prior to connecting. If it doesn't exist in the database, red flag it and don't connect.

The question is, can this be done on the OS level, or does it have to happen on the driver level? If it can be done at the OS level, easy peasy, just modify the code to establish tower connections to include this check. If it has to happen on a driver level, it gets trickier. Most phones use proprietary binary drivers for their cell radios, so they couldn't be readily modified. However, it may be possible to load an intermediate driver, which in turn loads the proprietary driver. If it could be determined which driver calls involved connecting to a new tower, you could just pass through everything else, and only pass through calls to the tower connect function if they passed your database lookup. Trickier, but doable. Because really, you want to avoid connecting to these things at all. Nice though it is to see you're being attacked, it's better to stop the attack before it starts.

Comment Re:No SD slot == No thanks. (Score 1) 196

Wow, I actually didn't notice that until I saw your post. Total deal breaker, which is tragic, I was all about this phone up until the moment of realization. I constantly walk around with at least 2 64GB cards in my wallet, Get a phone with large internal storage, keep all my apps on the internal, have bulk data and media on the cards. Without a slot, my entire mobile storage strategy goes right out the window. This seems like an incredibly foolish design decision, and one that will turn away a large part of the phone's potential market, namely people like me who actually store lots of data (video, mostly, people always trip when you connect your phone to their TV and start playing quality HD movies instead of the trifling low-bitrate shit they're used to from Netflix and the like). The ones most likely to miss this feature are probably the same kind of folks who've been playing with Cyanogenmod for years, too (again, me). And seriously, what would a slot have done to the price of the phone? I'd happily pay the extra to have an SD slot.

Comment Re:Free from the life-suck that is Diablo II (Score 1) 270

Meh. Even without the real money auctions, and reasonable loot drops that don't force you to go to the auction house, and even if the story wasn't the weakest of the three, and even if the gameplay was fun, and even if the skill and player stats system wasn't geared towards noobs, and, hell, even if they allowed LAN play and offline single-player, I still wouldn't care. Torchlight II. Had all the desireables from day one, none of the corporate crap that encumbered D3, and it was made by some of the same folks who made D1 and D2. So D3 is largely irrelevant to me anyway. Of course, I still don't play Torchlight nearly as much as I did D2, but I'm long out of school, I have a job, and a nascent business, and I live walking distance from crazy fun beaches and trails, so this is to be expected. Now, I WISH there were more hours in the day, so I could do all this and still have time to game. Considering relocating to Venus, but that seems like too many hours in the day.

Comment Re:Start teaching civics again too! (Score 2) 304

Oh, they still have civics classes. Took one in high school. Basically, you're taught "this is how the government works, this is how it has always worked, and it always works correctly, and it's the best government in the world." Critiques from students such as "well, here's a real world example that shows it doesn't work that way" or "well, that doesn't strike me as best, particularly in a place that bills itself as the land of the free" are met with hostility because it disrupts the all-important curriculum plan, and you'll be dismissed without discussion. The class was essentially state-sponsored indoctrination, coaching kids to uncritically accept the government as ideal and immutable. Critical thinkers need not apply.

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