Alterslash

the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2017-Oct-11 today archive

Google Will Hit 100 Percent Renewable Energy This Year

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Inverse: Google has announced that after 10 years a carbon-neutral company, it will be able to brag running on entirely renewable energy at the end of 2017. That means that all of the electricity the company consumes in both its data centers and offices are provided by wind and solar energy. Announced in Google's 2017 environmental report, Google says it has created "new energy purchasing models that others can follow" and that "we've helped drive wide-scale global adoption of clean energy." In addition to being an obvious PR boon, the company says its mission of full sustainability fits in with its larger mission. (It also makes the fact that as recently as 2015 Google alone reportedly consumed as much energy as the entire city of San Francisco in a year way more palatable.)

One step the company has recently taken in marrying its ethos of sustainability with its products is a new initiative to equip Google Street View vehicles with air quality sensors. In addition to its goal of being run by renewable energy, Google is also working on achieving zero waste to landfill. Nearly half of the company's 14 data centers have already reached this goal, according to Google executive Urs Holzle's 2017 Google Environmental report released on Tuesday.

Environmentalists make California burn

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Unlike you I live in California and have studied our endless fire events.

I will keep this VERY simple for you: California was designed by nature to regularly burn. It does not. Why? Because environmentalists prevent natural and human controlled sane things and instead inflicted truly nutso policies on the state.

Cutting back overgrown forests? Forbidden.
Clearing out the underbrush? Forbidden.
Letting smaller naturally occurring fires clear out underbrush and dead trees? Forbidden. Small fires stomped put immediately.
There are a few other similar policies created and enforced by moronic environmentalists whack jobs who don't want to understand the natural processes already in place by NATURE to prevent this huge fires but the above are the big ones.

End result? A truly colossal amount of dry burnable fuel built up over several years waiting for the tiniest spark to set the whole fucking state on fire. Smaller fires that the trees would normally survive burn extra hot leading to larger trees making the fires grow even bigger instead of limiting them and so we get the huge conflagrations every few years inevitably followed up by the same ignorant environmentalist nut jobs saying it's all proof of global warming and we should all drive Priuses.

This was the simple version for you. Idiot.

I'm going to finish taping the windows to keep as much smoke as possible out before I go to bed and hope my friends who live even closer to your fire survive and their homes aren't ash in the morning.

Re:electricity of San Francisco

By PopeRatzo • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

My personal experience living there

You're bringing anecdotes to a data fight? You of all people should know better. The discussion was not about your "personal experience". It was about the average temperature in San Francisco. And we have that data right here:

https://www.usclimatedata.com/...

Texans would call 76 room temperature

You know, you've come to the right place. Until moving to the California Central Coast five weeks ago, I lived in Houston, Texas. They do not call 76 room temperature there. Air conditioning in homes and offices is almost always set between 68 and 72. And yes, that's my "personal experience". People bring sweaters to work with them in Houston. Windows in new homes do not open.

Good job on googling "facts" though, thanks for the laugh.

Are you suggesting that usclimatedata has somehow been doctored just to make you look foolish? Why the scare quotes around "facts"? Do you believe it's fake news?

.

Re:Just in time for the antitrust consent decree

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

You stupid crackpots need to stop using meaningless words as replacements for thought.

No, it doesn't

By olau • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

That means that all of the electricity the company consumes in both its data centers and offices are provided by wind and solar energy.

It means that Google has purchased certificates and similar corresponding to their energy consumption. The data centers and offices are still running on power from coal and whatnot just like all their neighbours.

Don't get me wrong, it's great that Google as a great resource hog is investing in renewables. But the above "explanation" is spreading misinformation. For the above to be true, Google would have to run everything in isolated as isolated islands. That would be a lot more expensive.

Re:So - not 100% Renewable Energy then...

By davide marney • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

From the Report:

"Most notably, in 2017 Google will reach 100 percent renewable energy for our global operations—including both our data c"enters and offices. That means that we will directly purchase enough wind and solar electricity annually to account for every unit of electricity we consume, globally. This shift in our energy strategy didn’t just significantly reduce our environmental impact. By pioneering new energy purchasing models that others can follow, we’ve helped drive widescale global adoption of clean energy."

A better headline would have been, "Google will Repurpose Enough Renewable Power To Cover 100% of Its Non-Renewable Usage", but just trying running that one past the PR guy.

US Government Has 'No Right To Rummage' Through Anti-Trump Protest Website Logs, Says Judge

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
A Washington D.C. judge has told the U.S. Department of Justice it " does not have the right to rummage" through the files of an anti-Trump protest website -- and has ordered the dot-org site's hosting company to protect the identities of its users. The Register reports: Chief Judge Robert E. Morin issued the revised order [PDF] Tuesday following a high-profile back and forth between the site's hosting biz DreamHost and prosecutors over what details Uncle Sam was entitled to with respect to the disruptj20.org website. "As previously observed, courts around the country have acknowledged that, in searches for electronically stored information, evidence of criminal activity will likely be intermingled with communications and other records not within the scope of the search warrant," he noted in his ruling. "Because of the potential breadth of the government's review in this case, the warrant in its execution may implicate otherwise innocuous and constitutionally protected activity. As the Court has previously stated, while the government has the right to execute its Warrant, it does not have the right to rummage through the information contained on DreamHost's website and discover the identity of, or access communications by, individuals not participating in alleged criminal activity, particularly those persons who were engaging in protected First Amendment activities." The order then lists a series of protocols designed to protect netizens "to comply with First Amendment and Fourth Amendment considerations, and to prevent the government from obtaining any identifying information of innocent persons."

Re:Why Such a Low Opinion?

By rmdingler • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
Judges are an integral part of the very important checks and balances doctrine initially instituted by the founders of the Republic.

Since the most influential of them are appointed by the party in power at the moment, the process is subject to gaming; yet, the nature of the voting public is fickle, and when the ruling party begins to leave a foul taste in their mouths, the voters generally have dismissed the party in power in favor of the ephemeral change.

Though impartiality is a ruse, and the illusion of the change is little more than that, the balance of power between the right and left has kept the Republic safe.

Re:Totally ok to....

By drinkypoo • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Russia is not covered by the 1st Amendment.
If you want to use it, you need to be a citizen of the United States or a person within its borders.

Nope. Freedom of speech is considered by the United States to be a natural right, and the first amendment does not create it, only recognize it. In general, the USA has extended the right of free speech to non-citizens. This is not the case worldwide; for example, it's still illegal for a noncitizen of the UK to engage in "seditious" speech while on their soil, while they basically eliminated that for their own citizens some while ago.

Re:Publically acessable

By gnick • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Well, with there now being undeniable video of CNN and NYT actually being the antithesis of real journalism (which NBC is doing as well), why should they allow them to continue to spread disinformation?

Are you suggesting that CNN is less accurate than our White House? If DJT tells me one thing and CNN tells me another, I know who I'm going with. Because that keeps happening and DJT is wrong every time. He's still spouting off about America being "the highest-taxed nation in the world" and poor Sanders is stuck trying to defend it.

Re:Publically acessable

By GameboyRMH • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

LOL no the only thing that suddenly and mysteriously changed was your perception of the issue. Retroactively. If you can dig deep into your suppressed memories, you might remember free speech cages, and the right wanting to run the bill of rights through a crosscut shredder in the name of stopping those durn Muslim terr'ists under Dubya. Back when the mass surveillance kicked into high gear, that the right hardly ever complained about, even under Obama. Remember that?

Heck, remember when the right had this conspiracy theory that net neutrality was an attempt to bring back the Fairness Doctrine and that was considered a Very Bad Thing? Now the Golfer in Chief talks very plainly about bringing back the Fairness Doctrine in all but name, and nobody on the right bats an eye. One good thing that's come from the Senile Racist Uncle regime is that the shameless, all-encompassing hypocrisy of the right has been laid bare for all to see.

I'm still not sure what the right wants done to prevent boycotts, these days they're always complaining about people's freedom of speech and association when companies are pressured to fire outspoken deplorables in their employ like James Damore and Brendan Eich. Maybe an anti-boycott tribunal to force business relationships to continue when there's evidence of a political motive when ceasing them. Doesn't sound very constitution-friendly to me, but again, the right is very hypocritical about these things. They didn't make a peep about Jemele Hill after all.

Half right, half wrong

By Xenographic • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Here is the relevant law:

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.

This is the Superior Court of DC, so I think this is actually the relevant law on search warrants:
https://beta.code.dccouncil.us/dc/council/code/sections/48-921.02.html

The Constitution doesn't exactly provide a lot of details, so one normally looks at the actual laws on the subject. To re-derive the constitutional contours of search warrants from constitutional principles every time would be sort of like trying to do this every time you want to add 2+2. In short, no, it doesn't work that way.

It's normal for demands to be overly broad. They ask for whatever they might plausibly get, because sometimes the judge agrees with them and they won't get anything they don't request. This is how an adversarial justice system works. There are other models, for example, inquisitional systems, in use in other countries.

Note that I am not arguing with you about this being non-public information. You were right to correct the other poster about that. And you were right that it is, in fact, completely obvious from the fact that they issued a search warrant. The judge realized there were real concerns here, so they narrowed the scope of what was asked and are allowing the police to search it first, then unmask people later if they have probable cause to believe they were participants in a crime.

In short, it's a detailed and perfectly sensible decision that appears to be quite fair to both sides.

Qualcomm Fined Record $773 Million In Taiwan Antitrust Probe

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
According to Bloomberg, Qualcomm was fined a record NT$23.4 billion ($773 million) by Taiwan's Fair Trade Commission in the latest blow from regulators over the way the U.S. company prices mobile phone chips and patents. From the report: The company has been violating antitrust rules for at least 7 years and Qualcomm collected NT$400 billion in licensing fees from local companies during that time, the Taiwanese regulator said on its website Wednesday. Qualcomm disagrees with the decision and intends to appeal, the San Diego-based company said in a statement. The Taiwanese regulator said Qualcomm has monopoly market status over key mobile phone standards and by not providing products to clients who don't agree with its conditions, the U.S. company is violating local laws. It said Taiwanese companies had purchased $30 billion worth of Qualcomm baseband chips. Besides the fine, the Fair Trade Commission told Qualcomm to remove previously signed deals that force competitors to provide price, customer names, shipment, model name and other sensitive information as well as other clauses in its agreements.

Slap on the wrist as usual

By Bruce66423 • Score: 3 • Thread

Oh well, better than nothing.

Is the Chromebook the New Android Tablet?

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report from Computerworld, where JR Raphael makes the case for why it's time to call the Chromebook the new Android tablet: What does a traditional Android tablet do that a convertible Chromebook doesn't? No matter how long you mull, it's tough to come up with much. Nowadays, a Chromebook runs the same apps from the same Google Play Store. It has an increasingly similar user interface, with a new touch-friendly and Android-reminiscent app launcher rolling out as we speak. It's likely to have an Android-like way of getting around the system before long, too, not to mention native integration of the Google Assistant (which is launching with the newly announced Pixelbook and then presumably spreading to other devices from there). But on top of all of that, a Chromebook offers meaningful advantages a traditional Android tablet simply can't match. It operates within the fast-booting, inherently secure, and free from manufacturer- or carrier-meddling Chrome OS environment. The operating system is updated every two to three weeks, directly by Google, for a minimum of five years. That's a sharp contrast to the software realities we see on Android -- and if you think the updates on Android phones are bad, let me tell you: The situation with Android tablets is worse.

In addition to the regular selection of Android apps, a Chromebook also gives you a desktop-caliber browser experience along with a laptop-level keyboard and capable trackpad. (And, as a side perk, that means you've got a built-in multi-mode stand for your tablet, too.) It's the best of both worlds, as I've put it before -- a whole new kind of platform-defying, all-purpose productivity and entertainment machine. And while it won't immediately lead to the outright extinction of traditional Android tablets, it certainly makes them seem like a watered-down and obsolete version of the same basic experience.

Wrong.

By Qbertino • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Chromebook is Intel, not ARM.

??!? Huh?
Sorry, but I'm writing this on an official ARM Chromebook and things are working just fine, thank you. Wether Chrome OS or Android is running on x86 or ARM makes just about no difference at all for the upper layers, OSes included.

Re:chromebooks suck balls as an alternative

By Hognoxious • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Worst haiku EVER!

If the Chromebook has the right specs, then maybe

By rklrkl • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

I suspect the Computerworld article author has assumed that a typical Chromebook has the same specs as a tablet and *then* has a (hopefully detachable) keyboard on top of that. I just spent $230 on a 10.1" Android 7 tablet that has 4GB RAM, 64GB of local storage (that's rare for a Chromebook because of its cloud leanings), a 2560x1600 touchscreen (again, very rare for a Chromebook to have that res and not all Chromebooks have touchscreens either) and the usual GPS/accelerometer stuff too. I suspect you're talking *big* money to match those specs with a Chromebook.

Yes, I have a bluetooth mouse and keyboard I can optionally use with the new tablet (which will give a better experience than most Chromebooks' trackpads and keyboards) - it has mini-HDMI too if I wanted to hook it to a bigger screen. The tablet form factor is so much better for media consumption, particularly when you're on the move and don't have anywhere to rest your device on.

No

By loufoque • Score: 3 • Thread

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

Android update on tablet?

By Frederic54 • Score: 3 • Thread

> if you think the updates on Android phones are bad, let me tell you: The situation with Android tablets is worse.

Oh yes, I bought a few years ago the $$$ top of the line Samsung Galaxy Tab Pro tablet, it came with Android 4.4, it never had any update.

PornHub Uses Computer Vision To ID Actors, Acts In Its Videos

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Baron_Yam shares a report from TechCrunch, which details PornHub's use of machine learning to ID actors and acts in its videos: The computer vision system can identify specific actors in scenes and even identifies various positions and attributes. While it is obviously very difficult to describe the feature set for a family audience, the system can identify individual performers in real time -- in the demo here it recognizes one performer even from the side -- and it can also identify sex acts. Facial detection is nothing new, even for mobile devices, but this system goes one step further by categorizing videos and images based on various attributes. This means you'll be able find favorites by name or characteristics, a feat that once require prodigious amounts of data entry.

"So far we've used the model on about 500k featured videos which includes user submitted and we plan to scan the whole library in the beginning of 2018," said Price. "Very shortly, the technology will also be used to detect various sex positions / categories and be able to properly tag them as well."

Damn Computers

By CanadianMacFan • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

They have even taken over watching porn now.

Science Marches On

By JustAnotherOldGuy • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

"PornHub Uses Computer Vision To ID Actors, Acts In Its Videos"

Science Marches On (driven by the unquenchable desire for more boobies)

What a time to be alive.

Well this is terrifying

By rsilvergun • Score: 3 • Thread
lets say you did some things your not proud of when you were a young. Suddenly it becomes a whole lot easier for somebody to dig that stuff up.

Re: here's a challenge

By lucm • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Probably because they don't sell it in more then 3X large.

Nice thing to put on a resume

By DrXym • Score: 3 • Thread
"I wrote the routines for PornHub for classifying enema and adult diaper changing porn."

Equifax Breach Included 10 Million US Driving Licenses

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Engadget: 10.9 million U.S. driver's licenses were stolen in the massive breach that Equifax suffered in mid-May, according to a new report by The Wall Street Journal. In addition, WSJ has revealed that the attackers got a hold of 15.2 million UK customers' records, though only 693,665 among them had enough info in the system for the breach to be a real threat to their privacy. Affected customers provided most of the driver's licenses on file to verify their identities when they disputed their credit-report information through an Equifax web page. That page was one of the entry points the attackers used to gain entry into the credit reporting agency's system.

Customers?

By Zocalo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
You know, it's really starting to bug me that the media, including those that really ought to know better, keeps referring to the victims of the Equifax hack as their "customers". With the exception of those who actually signed up to Equifax's credit checking service of their own volition they, or more accurately the data Equifax has about them, are either victims or the *product*. Equifax's actual customers are the banks, employers, stores, and other companies that buy the data Equifax holds on the victims of the hack, most of whom have no direct business relationship with Equifax beyond an agreement with a third party to have their credit checked that probably didn't even make it clear that it would be Equifax doing the checks.

FCC's Claim That One ISP Counts As 'Competition' Faces Scrutiny In Court

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Jon Brodkin reports via Ars Technica: A Federal Communications Commission decision to eliminate price caps imposed on some business broadband providers should be struck down, advocacy groups told federal judges last week. The FCC failed to justify its claim that a market can be competitive even when there is only one Internet provider, the groups said. Led by Chairman Ajit Pai, the FCC's Republican majority voted in April of this year to eliminate price caps in a county if 50 percent of potential customers "are within a half mile of a location served by a competitive provider." That means business customers with just one choice are often considered to be located in a competitive market and thus no longer benefit from price controls. The decision affects Business Data Services (BDS), a dedicated, point-to-point broadband link that is delivered over copper-based TDM networks by incumbent phone companies like AT&T, Verizon, and CenturyLink.

But the FCC's claim that "potential competition" can rein in prices even in the absence of competition doesn't stand up to legal scrutiny, critics of the order say. "In 2016, after more than 10 years of examining the highly concentrated Business Data Services market, the FCC was poised to rein in anti-competitive pricing in the BDS market to provide enterprise customers, government agencies, schools, libraries, and hospitals with much-needed relief from monopoly rates," Phillip Berenbroick, senior policy counsel at consumer advocacy group Public Knowledge said. But after Republicans gained the FCC majority in 2017, "the commission illegally reversed course without proper notice and further deregulated the BDS market, leaving consumers at risk of paying up to $20 billion a year in excess charges from monopolistic pricing," Berenbroick said.

Re:Republican Corruption, what a surprise?

By bobbied • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

I totally disagree. Trump is as republican as I am a woman. I can call myself one, even dress like one and in some places even use the women's room, but nothing can biologically make me one.

Trump ran as a republican only because he would have never won the democratic primary and a third party is a non-starter in our system. He only self identifies as a republican for political convenience, but he's actually very much a democrat on the majority of the issues democrats find important. However, He doesn't care about either side's sacred cows, so they both hate him, while many voters love him for the very same reason.

The original poster is right, Trump is hated by both sides of the establishment. He's hated by the republicans because he won without their help or approval and isn't beholden to their handlers (those who give them money and keep them in power). He's hated by the democrats simply because he won over the heir apparent. But Trump is Trump....

Re:Republican Corruption, what a surprise?

By JohnFen • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

He only self identifies as a republican for political convenience, but he's actually very much a democrat

Trump is no Republican, I agree, but he isn't anything like a Democrat either. Trump only cares about Trump.

He's hated by the republicans because he won without their help or approval and isn't beholden to their handlers (those who give them money and keep them in power). He's hated by the democrats simply because he won over the heir apparent.

I don't think any of this is accurate. Trump is hated by Republicans and Democrats for pretty much the same fundamental reason (although Reps and Dems might disagree on the details): he's a threat to the nation.

Re:Republican Corruption, what a surprise?

By spun • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Let's actually list the things Trump and Republicans agree on:
1. Tighter immigration control
2. Less regulation on corporations
3. Lower taxes for the wealthy
4. Screw the environment (in case 2 didn't make that clear enough)
5. Screw the LGBT community
6. Pander to religious fundamentalists
7. More military spending
8. Screw minorities
9. Keep as many people from voting as possible
10. Repeal Obamacare and make sure poor people can't get healthcare

As far as I can tell, that is the entirety of the Republican party platform. How is he not a Republican? What are the actual differences? I'm curious. Because the Republican party is bending over pretty far to ingratiate themselves with Trump, even when he insults them to their faces, and meanwhile Trump is trying to do everything they ask him to do. They are one and the same.

Re:Fuck Ajit Pai

By TheGratefulNet • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I'll go better than that: fuck the current republicans. fuck them so bad they all get voted out of office next time.

if america needed an education about what the R's stand for, they sure got one this time around. anything that helps consumers, the R's are blatantly against. (can you cite anything that contradicts this?)

I realize that slash has been invaded by the R fans (even though as a tech forum, most of us are clearly NOT R-based in our thinking) but before you mod me down, I'd like you to cite an example of where a modern R has stood up for the regular guy and not for the ultra rich and powerful.

I'm hoping that this tire fire called 'trump admin' really ruins a lot of people; especially those in red states. they need a harsh awakening and a wake-up call. they have been misled and have been guided into voting against their own best interests.

I wonder if people really will realize this. I hear lots of talk, but when the next election comes, I have a feeling that the reds will forget all this harm that was done to our country and will follow their 'religion' and continue to fund those that work against the common man.

Re:Republican Corruption, what a surprise?

By spun • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

So human nature is immutable, and what is currently true about the species will always be true? We're too lazy for direct democracy, and always will be, even with networked computers?

Amazon Finally Makes a Waterproof Kindle

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
After 10 years of Kindles, Amazon has finally made a kindle e-reader with an IPX8 waterproof rating. The new Kindle Oasis features a 7-inch display and aluminum back. The Verge reports: Unlike last year's Kindle Oasis, which used a magnetic case you attached to the e-reader to extend its battery life, the new Oasis relies entirely on its built-in battery. It has a similar physical design, with one thicker side that tapers down on the other side, for one-handed reading. But Amazon has made a point of saying that it managed to fit in a bigger battery, while keeping the tapered side of the device at 3.4 millimeters. The resolution of the e-paper display is the same at 300 ppi, but it has a couple extra LED lights now for a brighter, more even-looking display. And it also has ambient light sensors that adjust the brightness as you move from room to room, or from outdoors to indoors. There are physical page-turn buttons, plus the touchscreen page-turn option; Amazon says it's worked on both the hardware and software side of things to make page-turning feel faster. The new e-reader has been tested in two meters of water for up to 60 minutes. It's also been tested in different water environments, like hot tubs, pools, and bubble baths.

...finally?

By Chris Katko • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Finally? Like it's some huge problem? My wife has had 3 kindles and none of them died from water damage.

Meanwhile, how many Apple phones get dropped into the sink or toilet every year? How about we apply the "Finally" qualifier to them, eh?

I like it for a different reason

By 93 Escort Wagon • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I can't say I've ever said to myself "I wish this Kindle were waterproof!" However I have wished for a Kindle with larger page size*, and this new one has a 7" screen.

But, still, it'll likely be several years before I replace my Kindle Voyage. The main reason I replaced my old 3G was the dog got hold of it.

* Yes, I remember the DX

Re:whatever.

By richardellisjr • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread
90% of the books I read on mine are public domain from project Gutenberg. Owning one of these doesn't mean you have to buy books from them. I probably will be buying one of these so I don't have to put my Kindle in a waterproof bag when I go to the pool or beach.

Waterproof is great but ...

By mr_mischief • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

Waterproof is great but I want something between the black e-ink and the comparably horrible battery life of a Fire. Could I have a 256, 64, or 16 - even 4 ! - color e-ink display that's not from some no-name Chinese company? Please? Something that's decent for charts and web comics doesn't need to have full color and instant screen updates.

Pirate Bay is Mining Cryptocurrency Again, No Opt Out

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The Pirate Bay is mining cryptocurrency again, causing a spike in CPU usage among many visitors. From a report: For now, the notorious torrent site provides no option to disable it. The new mining expedition is not without risk. CDN provider Cloudflare previously suspended the account of a site that used a similar miner, which means that The Pirate Bay could be next. Last month The Pirate Bay caused some uproar by adding a Javascript-based cryptocurrency miner to its website. The miner utilizes CPU power from visitors to generate Monero coins for the site, providing an extra source of revenue. [...] The Pirate Bay currently has no opt-out option, nor has it informed users about the latest mining efforts. This could lead to another problem since Coinhive said it would crack down on customers who failed to keep users in the loop.

Re:I'm surprised

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

I would have thought the people who knew about torrents were among the same people who use adblockers and NoScript.

People that use adblockers and NoScript want privacy.
People that use torrents want free stuff.
There is some overlap, but they are mostly different groups.

Re:Who cares? It's better than advertising.

By viperidaenz • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

The Pirate Bay doesn't require Javascript to function. Turn it off and the ads are less intrusive too.

Re:Shocked, simply shocked

By sexconker • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Next you'll tell me that Warez producers incorporate exploit code into the products they crack.

They don't. Proper scene releases are clean.

Re:I'm surprised

By qortra • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

People that use torrents want free stuff.

You make it sound so tawdry, perhaps because you failed to identify the most important distinction: free as in beer, or as in speech? Many of the people who want "free stuff" are more than happy to buy their media, but only without DRM. People who don't want DRM and do want privacy actually overlap quite nicely.

Re:Who cares? It's better than advertising.

By tlhIngan • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Seriously. Most of us have cores sitting idle. Instead of being abused / tracked / annoyed / occasionally infected by advertising, why not let sites do a small amount of mining while we visit?

What's the real difference? How do you know the miner script isn't doing tracking / infesting your PC with malware? The javascript behind it is exactly the same - whether it's annoying displaying an ad, or mining.

If you say it's because it's first party, remember advertising started out that way too - every site handled their own advertising. Then came along ad networks which made it easier for website creators to have ads. It's only a matter of time before mining becomes a network and all you have to do is join a mining network. Said mining network can also track you across the web like ads do, as well as potentially be infected with dodgy scripts that install all sorts of weird crap, like ads do.

Failed Palo Alto Startup Pivots From Trying To Be an 'Android Killer' To Self-driving Tech

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
A Palo Alto startup that stopped trying to be an "Android killer" last year after raising $185 million has apparently pivoted to developing autonomous vehicle technology. From a report: The company now known as Cyngn has changed its name from Cyanogen and recently got a permit to test its self-driving tech on California roads, according to a report Wednesday on Axios. It's being led by Lior Tal, the former chief operating officer who took over as CEO last fall when Kirt McMaster left. The rest of the startup's current team of about 30 people appear to have joined since the strategy shift, Axios reported, citing LinkedIn records. Some of them are former Facebook people, like Tal, and alumni of automakers who include Mercedes-Benz. No new funding has been disclosed for the reinvented company. It lists on its website investors who backed it before it pivoted, including Andreessen Horowitz, Benchmark Capital, Redpoint Ventures, Index Ventures, Qualcomm and Chinese social networking company Tencent. The company was the center of acquisition talk in 2014, when companies like Microsoft, Amazon, Samsung and Yahoo expressed interest in the company.

Re:Ok, this makes no sense

By EndlessNameless • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The CEO decides what to do with the money---it's a corporate asset.

If the board of directors doesn't like what he's doing, they can fire him.

The board is elected by the shareholders, aka the investors.

If they don't like the new direction, they can fix the problem. There's a process for that.

Re:Ok, this makes no sense

By Kristoph • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

In most cases investors do now want the money back, especially traditional VC's. In one startup I did we established - after launch - that there wasn't the growth opportunity in the market that we expected. We were offered a price for the existing business that would have returned a high percentage of the initial investment back to the investor which we thought was a 'good thing to do'.

In response the VC said: 'If this didn't work figure out what will and then spend all but the last dollar trying to get there. The last dollar we'll roll into a join and smoke it' ( we're in WA so this would have been a legal activity ).

In other words

By JohnFen • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

They completed the task of destroying Cyanogenmod and are looking for what to destroy next.

Re:Ok, this makes no sense

By Faluzeer • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Rule 1: Investors are dumb.

I believe the Ferengi (from Deep Space 9) rules of acquisition cover this :
Rule 1 : Once you have their money, you never give it back.

The story of startups

By Reverend Green • Score: 3 • Thread

1. Fedgov prints a bunch of free money out of thin air, calling it "Quantitative Easing"

2. Fedgov gives that free money to their friends / "campaign contributors" in the big banks

2. The big banks bid up every asset they can find, but still have piles and piles of free money sitting around.

3. Big banks can't figure or anything else to do with all that free public money - so they start giving a bunch of it to the bankers' inbred, half-wit cousins who run VC firms in Palo Alto

4. The VCs discover they've been given more money than they can possibly waste on hookers & blow. So they hire a few of their butt-buddies from the Stanford dorms to found some "startups".

5. The butt-buddies look at what other loss-making companies are doing, then do the same thing only with an even stupider company name.

6. No business acumen, nor any actual talent, are required to get a leadership role at a startup. You just have to be from the "right schools". Consequently the startups have no business model and not much ability to execute. But hey - at least this time they didn't pay "outrageous" salaries to a bunch of filthy working class nerds!

6. The startups make a handsome loss, undercut and bankrupt a few legitimate businesses, and keep on getting bigger and bigger valuations each time they return to the VC teat to suck more free public money.

7. Somewhere way up the food chain, someone in DC or New Jack City gets a little nervous about propping up so many worthless loss-making "startup" companies.

8. The steady stream of free public money starts to dry up

9. The Crash!

10. Somewhere in Palo Alto, a Stanford boy can no longer afford his Personal Ass Sanitation Assistant, and is forced to resume wiping his own butt.

Moscow Has Turned Kaspersky Antivirus Software Into a Global Spy Tool, Using It To Scan Computers For Secret US Data

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
WSJ has a major scoop today. From a report: The Russian government used a popular antivirus software to secretly scan computers around the world for classified U.S. government documents and top-secret information, modifying the program to turn it into an espionage tool (could be paywalled), according to current and former U.S. officials with knowledge of the matter. The software, made by the Moscow-based company Kaspersky Lab, routinely scans files of computers on which it is installed looking for viruses and other malicious software. But in an adjustment to its normal operations that the officials say could only have been made with the company's knowledge, the program searched for terms as broad as "top secret," which may be written on classified government documents, as well as the classified code names of U.S. government programs, these people said. The Wall Street Journal reported last week that Russian hackers used Kaspersky's software in 2015 to target a contractor working for the National Security Agency, who had removed classified materials from his workplace and put them on his home computer, which was running the program. The hackers stole highly classified information on how the NSA conducts espionage and protects against incursions by other countries, said people familiar with the matter. But the use of the Kaspersky program to spy on the U.S. is broader and more pervasive than the operation against that one individual, whose name hasn't been publicly released, current and former officials said. This link should get you around WSJ's paywall. Also read: Israeli Spies 'Watched Russian Agents Breach Kaspersky Software'

Re:That's an act of war, right?

By 93 Escort Wagon • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Kellyanne isn't much more reliable than her boss. Her boss lies like a rug.

He lies; she's mainly just an idiot.

Kaspersky AV Working as Designed

By h4ck7h3p14n37 • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Regarding the NSA contractor, it sounds like Kaspersky AV was working as designed. It detected the malware the contractor was working on and sent the file back to Kaspersky Labs for analysis. It sounds to me like the NSA's security policy needs some work if a contractor can download classified files to a non-secure computer.

Now as far as Kaspersky AV scanning for classified documents, that's certainly plausible but where's the evidence? Not running the software on sensitive computers sounds like good policy, but there's a lot of software that shouldn't be run on those types of systems. That being said, how do we know all foreign made computers themselves haven't been compromised at the factory?

Re:do people actually believe this stuff?

By AHuxley • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Nation A spies on nation B. Nation A tells nation C about what it "found" deep in nation B.
Nation A and C then publish what they found from all their spying on nation B in near real time.
Nation B is then accused of "spying" to cover for what nation A and C really did.
In the real world nation A and C would have kept that a secret and created all kinds of fake litter for nation B to find and believe in.

If fantastic details are in the open media its just something fictional to publish and push national cyber talking points.
Real spy success stories stays secret for decades so a nation B never knew what really happened.

Re:Treason

By liquid_schwartz • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

It's the mouthpiece of reality that you really object to.

I'm sorry that you are loyal to Russia instead of America, and that you want Americans to continue running Russian government spyware.

If you were a loyal American instead of a traitor you would understand that it's important to warn you fellow Americans of a hostile foreign adversary's attack on your country and your computers.

Supporting Russia or Russians isn't treason. We are not at war with Russia. In fact, they're our allies.

Treason includes giving aid or comfort the the nation's enemies (foreign or domestic).

Indeed. In Southern California you see about as many Mexican flags as American flags, and Mexican nationals have killed far more Americans via murder and drunk driving than the Russians ever will. Yet oddly we deem that as deserving of Sanctuary while the Russians are considered a menace. Strange how we pick our enemies on anything *but* logic.

Re:That's an act of war, right?

By rtb61 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Keep in mind the reality of the story. The Israeli spy agency whilst commuting criminals acts reports that Kaspersky is harvesting 'spy tools', not harvesting the target computer of it's data but harvesting the tools ie getting a copy of that virus and it settings, plus the type of data it sends and where it sends it and hopefully where it came from. Isn't this what they are meant to do, get those hacking tools, analyse them and break them but then no story like an old story https://www.youtube.com/watch?... and now twisted to attack Kaspersky why, because they were doing to good a job perhaps and exposing NSA and CIA activities and are being punished for it. This is not even a Russia propaganda thing, this is punishing a security company for exposing NSA/CIA/MOSSAD criminal activities.

As for Israel claims of hacking, well, the spy vss spy crowd is always obvious, they always lie, it is their nature. They claim online hacking, than it is a lie, Kaspersky you have for profit Mossad moles with offshore tax haven bank accounts, want to find them, track where they went for holidays, tax haven stays are a pretty solid indicator of criminal activity. In fact any security company, any where in the world, should advise it's staff that stays in tax havens will be considered a sign of criminal intent, it is, just the way it is.

Facebook Announces $199 Oculus Go Standalone VR Headset

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Facebook is going to ship a standalone VR headset called Oculus Go next year. The headset, which won't require a PC or phone to run, will be available early next year for $199. From a report: Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg officially announced the new product during his keynote speech at Facebook's fourth Oculus Connect virtual reality (VR) developer conference in San Jose, Calif. Wednesday, where he framed the device as an important step towards bringing VR to the masses. "We want to get a billion people in virtual reality," Zuckerberg said. Facebook VP of VR Hugo Barra said that the company developed custom lenses for the headset, which allow for a wide field of view. The display is a fast-switch LCD screen with a resolution of 2560x1440 pixels, and it comes with integrated headphones. The company will be shipping first headsets to developers in November.

Re:So... it will be...

By JediJorgie • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

> a large part of the expense for LAST YEAR'S VR is the accurate position tracking.

FTFY

Inside-out tracking is mostly solved and being reduced to dedicated, soon to be commodity silicon. Tracking should be great.

Re:Integrated headphones

By mindwhip • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

you've never owned a Beats headset (since the Apple takeover) the cables on them fail even faster than an iphone headphone adaptor...

Re:What does it actually do?

By spire3661 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Its going to have a mobile SoC on par with the latest phones.

Re:Not VR

By JohnFen • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

From TFA:

Oculus Go will ship with a handheld controller and work with the same apps available on Samsung’s Gear VR headset. However, it won’t have any positional tracking, which means that high-end VR apps available on the Oculus Rift headset won’t run on the device.

I love my Rift

By Thyamine • Score: 3 • Thread
I built a gaming rig specifically so I could get the Oculus Rift this year. I love it. Almost everyone who tries it is amazed and loves it (my mom seemed somehow completely unimpressed). Since I purchased it, any new games are specifically for it. My poor consoles are languishing for any love at all. I don't see this headset competing against a Rift setup, which more or less people have already reported it will be equivalent to a smart phone, however I can see that once people get a taste of it, they may scale up to want more.

I can also see the parallels between hardcore and casual gamers. Before tablets and smartphones, most of the casual gamers would have done no gaming at all. But give them a simple, cheap device, and suddenly VR is more ubiquitous and devs will move to that. Having used the Rift to try and work with my desktop, I don't foresee this being a device people are wearing for hours, however it could draw people into more VR content.

California DMV Changes Rules To Allow Testing and Use of Fully Autonomous Vehicles

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The California Department of Motor Vehicles is changing its rules to allow companies to test autonomous vehicles without a driver behind the wheel -- and to let the public use autonomous vehicles. From a report: The DMV released a revised version of its regulations and has started a 15-day public comment period, ending October 25, 2017. California law requires the DMV to work on regulations to cover testing and public use of autonomous vehicles, and the regulator said that this is the first step. "We are excited to take the next step in furthering the development of this potentially life-saving technology in California," the state's Transportation Secretary, Brian Kelly, said in a statement. California's DMV took pains in its announcement to highlight that it wasn't trying to overstep the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which has the final say on developing and enforcing compliance with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards. Rather, the California regulations, are going to require manufacturers to certify that they've met federal safety standards before their cars become (driverlessly) street legal. And manufacturers still have to obey the state traffic laws written for California.

Just when you thought it was safe to drive...

By IApeFatCashews • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
I would love to see autonomous vehicles navigate a California parking lot during the holiday shopping season.

Liability

By XXongo • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
What I'm more interested in here is, has California codified who has liability for accidents involving self-driving cars?

Re:Hopefully the public votes this down

By Guybrush_T • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The thought of a 3000+ pound hunk of steel driven by an unpredictable person near people on sidewalks is even more insanity. The person could be drunk, texting, having a heart attack, or simply crazy.

Very soon people will realize that having a robot drive is much safer and predictable. Just like they're much better at driving planes, rockets going to space, ...

Re:Do it while you can!

By gnick • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Once driverless takes hold it'll be sad to see that excitement fade away...

When I'm being driven around, I prefer as little excitement as possible. Let's see what these deliver.

Re:Liability

By fluffernutter • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
As long as the insurance company can't raise a car owner's premiums when the car makes a mistake. The same software in every car means every car owner is equally as skilled. The practice of charging a driver according to their past driving history no longer has any logic.

Unsent Text On Mobile Counts As a Will, Australian Court Finds

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
A court in Australia has accepted an unsent, draft text message on a dead man's mobile phone as an official will. The 55-year-old man had composed a text message addressed to his brother, in which he gave "all that I have" to his brother and nephew. From a report: The Supreme Court in Brisbane heard the 55-year-old took his own life in October 2016, after composing a text addressed to his brother, which indicated his brother and nephew should "keep all that I have," because he was unhappy with this wife. A friend found the text message in the drafts folder of the man's mobile phone, which was found near his body. The unsent message detailed how to access the man's bank account details and where he wanted his ashes to be buried.

Unsent

By cyberchondriac • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

My problem with this is that the text was unsent and still a draft, yet he took his own life at a time of his own choosing.
So, it's likely he wasn't really sure he wanted to do this, but was only pondering it... unless he didn't have signal where he was. Some people right mad letters just to blow off steam but never send them. The whole point of text messages is to send a communication, not create documents on your device. There are default apps for that too.
Had the text been sent, that'd be different. Was there cellular reception at this location?

Could be trouble

By PopeRatzo • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

I just hope an unsent text on a mobile never counts as a marriage proposal.

How do you authenticate authorship though?

By JoeyRox • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
The purpose of having a signed and witnessed will is proof that it was authored or approved by the individual. Even with an unwitnessed handwritten will you can authenticate the author from handwriting analysis. How can this be accomplished for a document typed on a Smartphone, when anyone could have picked the phone up and typed it in post hoc?

Re:Seems Legit

By I'm New Around Here • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Japanese tempura is the only way to be a vegetable. I like tempura vegetables of vegetables I don't even like, it's that good.

Two aspects come to mind

By sd4f • Score: 3 • Thread

There are two things that come to mind which make me think it's not unreasonable.

The first is, the guy's dead, his true intentions can't really be determined now, insofar as what was left behind, and are probably more inclined to just to share the estate, because ultimately the court doesn't care.

The second is a lot of suicidal people don't send out their messages, they do leave them on their phone, so that no one comes and tries to rescue them. I would guess this situation is no different, after all, I'm sure the brother would have tried to intervene with a message like what was saved on the phone.

Looking at those things together, and given the circumstances of the breakdown in the relationship, yea, I think the courts determined an appropriate outcome.

Despite Sanctions, Russian Organisations Acquire Microsoft Software

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader shares a report: Software produced by Microsoft has been acquired by state organizations and firms in Russia and Crimea despite sanctions barring U.S-based companies from doing business with them, official documents show. The acquisitions, registered on the Russian state procurement database, show the limitations in the way foreign governments and firms enforce the U.S. sanctions, imposed on Russia over its annexation of the Crimea peninsula from Ukraine in 2014. Some of the users gave Microsoft fictitious data about their identity, people involved in the transactions told Reuters, exploiting a gap in the U.S. company's ability to keep its products out of their hands. The products in each case were sold via third parties and Reuters has no evidence that Microsoft sold products directly to entities hit by the sanctions. "Microsoft has a strong commitment to complying with legal requirements and we have been looking into this matter in recent weeks," a Microsoft representative said in an emailed response to questions from Reuters.

Isn't "You must run Microsoft" itself a sanction?

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Using Microsoft software sure is a punishment.

I don't get it.

By EnsilZah • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I assume Microsoft can't offer support for this software, and I very much doubt Russian authorities would crack down on the copyright infringement, so what's the point of paying for a license that holds no legal significance to anyone involved?

I'm torn...

By rnturn • Score: 3 • Thread

Should I be worried that the Russians will get their hands on Microsoft product and learn where it's vulnerable and come up with ways to bring down the West's businesses? Or should I be comforted to know that the Russians will soon find their computing infrastructure subject to all the virii and worms that the West has to deal with?

Shooting themselves in the foot.

By Gravis Zero • Score: 3 • Thread

If we're being honest with ourselves, there is no better way to destroy someone's "cybersecurity" than to have them rely on Microsoft products. Frankly, anyone relying on them is asking for trouble.

This Company Is Crowdsourcing Maps For Self-Driving Cars

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
mirandakatz writes: If we want self-driving cars to become mainstream, we need maps -- and not just any maps. We need ridiculously detailed and constantly updated maps of the world's roads. And there's a mad race among startups to become the definitive provider of those maps. At Backchannel, Steven Levy takes a deep look at Mapper, a startup that just came out of stealth today and that hopes to become that definitive provider by crowdsourcing the production of those maps, paying drivers to drive around with a special mapping device on their windshields. As Levy writes, "Mapper's solution is to create an army of part-time workers to gather data that will accrue to a huge "base map" for autonomous cars, and to update the map to keep it current. Think of the work as an alternative to driving for Uber and Lyft, without having to deal with customer ratings or backseat outbursts from Travis Kalanick."

OpenStreetMap

By Midnight Thunder • Score: 3 • Thread

Sounds like something OpenStreetMap already does, though there are probably accuracy and liabilities limitations? Though, based on the following sentence, I would suspect the map data they produce is not going to be open:

Mapper’s solution is to create an army of part-time workers to gather data that will accrue to a huge “base map” for autonomous cars, and to update the map to keep it current.

The other thing is whether they will reference publicly the sources of their data, otherwise there is likely to be a high risk of ripping off other sources and even including the same errors.

No.

By Type44Q • Score: 3 • Thread

If we want self-driving cars to become mainstream, we need maps

No. If these systems require more accurate maps [than human motorists require] to keep passengers alive, then the self-driving peons still don't get it.

Re:OpenStreetMap

By jellomizer • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

If self driving cars need such detailed maps, then Self Driving cars are not yet ready for the general public.

I know my GPS sometimes gets confused when going off a Ramp onto a highway, or a road parallel to a highway, and areas that fork rather rapidly. However this requires the self driving car to make the decisions not a detailed map. Because Roads change too often. Just this summer, we had some flooding that wiped out a good part of a road, for a few weeks, one lane of the road was closed causing 1 way traffic with a makeshift stoplight. Then after construction was done the road was shifted 15 feet to one side. If self driving cars are to be a reality, they will need to figure this stuff out by itself, and not with detailed maps. As this stuff can change faster (especially on low populated areas) then people can record such changes.

What we need

By nospam007 • Score: 3 • Thread

is self-driving cars that collect self-driving maps data for self-driving cars.

Connectivity

By fluffernutter • Score: 3 • Thread
What about areas without connectivity? If self driving cars *need* these maps to work then how will they ever work if you drive away from an internet connection?

Israeli Spies 'Watched Russian Agents Breach Kaspersky Software'

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Israeli spies looked on as Russian hackers breached Kaspersky cyber-security software two years ago, according to reports. From a report: The Russians were allegedly attempting to gather data on US intelligence programs, according to the New York Times and Washington Post. Israeli agents made the discovery after breaching the software themselves. Kaspersky has said it was neither involved in nor aware of the situation and denies collusion with authorities. Last month, the US government decided to stop using the Russian firm's software on its computers. The Israelis are said to have notified the US, which led to the ban on Kaspersky programs. The New York Times said that the situation had been described by "multiple people who have been briefed on the matter."

Re:I don't know who's spying who

By nagora • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
We need more traitors like him to protect us from assholes like you who would sell us all down the river for any bastard wrapped in a flag.

Re: I don't know who's spying who

By F.Ultra • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
Which of course is not what happened. He was in Russia only to transit further when the US revoced his passport which effectively stranded him in Russia. So he is only in Russia due to the US government.

Re:NPR advertising Kapersky this am

By Billly Gates • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

I disagree.

Only Briebart and Fox is unbiased if you ask any Trump supporter. If any news outlet talks about Russia it is a lie by the libtards and part of the fake news if it doesn't agree with their ideology.

Re:With friends like this, who needs enemies

By VocationalZero • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
I can't say I'm a fan of arguments using heavy-handed, over-simplified analogies, this one included. Seems more like a false equivalence.

Your timeline is wrong, and you are basically stating that the Israelis were only there to steal information from the US. Do you actually know this, or is this just pessimistic conjecture?

Even if they were only there initially to steal data (big if), we live in a world where everyone spies on everyone. It is what spy agencies do, it is their entire purpose. It makes no sense to expect not to be spied on, but it does make sense that allied agencies would inform you if non-allied agencies are successfully intruding into your systems.

Re:I don't know who's spying who

By eaglesrule • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Snowden is a hero. He proved without a doubt we were being lied to.

There is plenty documenting the events leading up to his residing in Russia, including the timing of his passport being revoked, so perhaps you should rethink that. Do you really believe that bravery means waiving your right to a fair trial and letting yourself be shipped off to a CIA blacksite to be tortured?

Justice Department To Be More Aggressive In Seeking Encrypted Data From Tech Companies

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Wall Street Journal (Warning: source may be paywalled; alternative source): The Justice Department signaled Tuesday it intends to take a more aggressive posture in seeking access to encrypted information from technology companies, setting the stage for another round of clashes in the tug of war between privacy and public safety. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein issued the warning in a speech in Annapolis, Md., saying that negotiating with technology companies hasn't worked. "Warrant-proof encryption is not just a law enforcement problem," Mr. Rosenstein said at a conference at the U.S. Naval Academy. "The public bears the cost. When our investigations of violent criminal organizations come to a halt because we cannot access a phone, even with a court order, lives may be lost." Mr. Rosenstein didn't say what precise steps the Justice Department or Trump administration would take. Measures could include seeking court orders to compel companies to cooperate or a push for legislation. A Justice Department official said no specific plans were in the works and Mr. Rosenstein's speech was intended to spur public awareness and discussion of the issue because companies "have no incentive to address this on their own."

Re:Nothing but the Abuses

By Wrath0fb0b • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Man, you are totally degrading our argument against these measures with this ridiculous line of reasoning. Of course these measures are useful against violent criminal organizations and actual people that wish to do harm. It's really trivial to find examples of this (like the dead San Bernardino shooter) and, with the way you've constructed your argument, you lose when an example like that comes out.

What those of us that are serious concede is that there are plenty of times in which such a measure is legitimately useful, but nevertheless, the risk for abuse is far too great and that we understand that as a tradeoff we should forego the legitimate uses to protect against the abuse. This is no different than any other conception of civil liberties -- after all, we know for a fact that our system acquits guilty people for a variety of procedural and other reasons, and that some fraction of those people go on to violate more people's rights. But we accept that as the cost of defendants' protections. Similarly, we accept the concept of parole knowing that some (maybe low) fraction of parolees will commit crimes that violate people's rights. We don't insist that parole can't happen unless that fraction is identically zero.

So quit it with the conspiratorial nonsense of imagining that this is some kind of plot. It's not, and you're making us look like loonies.

What it is is that there are zealots for whatever cause that don't give a shit about our rights and believe that it's better to trample them in order to get the drugs/terrorist/mafia/whatever-bad-guy. And you know what, in a big way that's a lot fucking worse that someone actually wants to enact tyranny. These are guys that are delusional and think they are fighting the good fight.

Oddly enough, besides making us look like loonies, your arguments give them cover by asserting that it must be bad motivations that lead to tyranny. It's exactly the opposite -- it's the zealous pursuit of good motives that pave the way to hell.

Finally, and before I rant further, I want to quote the Supreme Court talking about the purpose of the Fourth Amendment:

The point of the Fourth Amendment which often is not grasped by zealous officers is not that it denies law enforcement the support of the usual inferences which reasonable men draw from evidence. Its protection consists in requiring that those inferences be drawn by a neutral and detached magistrate, instead of being judged by the officer engaged in the often competitive enterprise of ferreting out crime.

Any assumption that evidence sufficient to support a magistrate"s disinterested determination to issue a search warrant will justify the officers in making a search without a warrant would reduce the Amendment to a nullity, and leave the people"s homes secure only in the discretion of police officers. Crime, even in the privacy of one's own quarters, is, of course, of grave concern to society, and the law allows such crime to be reached on proper showing. The right of officers to thrust themselves into a home is also a grave concern, not only to the individual, but to a society which chooses to dwell in reasonable security and freedom from surveillance. When the right of privacy must reasonably yield to the right of search is, as a rule, to be decided by a judicial officer, not by a policeman or government enforcement agent.

Re:Nothing but the Abuses

By Wrath0fb0b • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I agree. These are all abuses that have happened. But that doesn't mean that the policies were put in place for the purpose of abuses rather than by zealous people after other ends.

I think civil forfeiture is awful, but even I have to concede it has been a very useful tool at defunding drug conspiracies (not that I even believe in the War on Drugs in the first place). And I can understand how a zealous drug warrior would see that tool and not give a shit about people standing in the way. I still believe that the potential for abuse greatly outweighs the benefit, but it's madness to say that it was invented for the purpose of abusing it.

So I have to argue against the zealot not because I think he is in a conspiracy to abuse our rights, but because he's after his own windmill and will burn us to the ground to get at it. If you still don't get that, I don't think I can help you.

An incredibly bad argument

By JohnFen • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

First, to hear the Justice department tell it, they must have been unable to solve crimes back before networks existed. Which is clearly BS.

Second, if their argument is to be taken seriously, then we also need to have laws preventing people from owning safes unless they give a copy of the key/combo to the government.

So-called "Justice Dept" can go FUCK ITSELF

By Rick Schumann • Score: 3 • Thread
I'm going to start with a quote from an AC, because some of you block AC's even if they're modded up to +5:

"Violent criminal organizations" are the last thing on their minds when making these arguments. They want to go after dissent, after whistleblowers. They want to stalk their exes, commit industrial espionage and blackmail. They want to track the best moments to rape and murder, or to be able to plant evidence without alibis making their so-called discoveries as obviously fake as they can be.

These powers would not and will never be used to make citizens or the country safer in any way, even if it could be used in this fashion. If there were any chance they could, they would never pursue them.

I actually couldn't have said it any better myself. Go search in the recent news; Trump has been openly hunting down regular citizens who have spoken out against him. Why would he do that if not to persecute them, perhaps to the point of false charges being raised against them, as a punitive action for DARING to speak out against the Great and Mighty Donald J. Trump, (LOL)? Note also that way too many people get into 'law enforcement' because they have Power Fantasies about subjugating (bullying, whatever you want to call it) whoever they please to, and apparently there are way too many closeted White Supremacists in law enforcement, if you take the frequency of young black men being shot to death for no damned good reason as any indicator of that.

Nope, banning encryption (or destroying it's effectiveness, same difference really) isn't going to make anyone in this country safer or reduce crime or terrorism or effectively prosecute offenders, it's going to be just one more step towards a TOTAL POLICE STATE where there is no such thing as 'Freedom', not unless you're a COP, or you're RICH. So FUCK THEM and their 'aggressive stance' (read as: BULLYING) in getting tech companies to breach citizens' devices.

Re:This government needs even MORE power!

By GrumpySteen • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

It's funny how you translated "more registered voters than residents" into "voted democrat".

The errors in the registration lists are largely due to people moving, dying, etc. and not contacting the state to deregister. It's a common problem and it's not just among Democrats, despite your obvious desire to paint it as such.

After Trump bitched about fraudulent voting and people being registered where they shouldn't, it came out that Steve Bannon, Tiffany Trump, Sean Spicer, Jared Kushner and Steven Mnuchin were all registered in more than one state because they hadn't deregistered themselves when they moved.

If you honestly believe that someone being registered in two states means they're voting in both states, then you should be demanding that all those Republicans be arrested for voter fraud.

A Giant, Mysterious Hole Has Opened Up In Antarctica

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Scientists are perplexed over a giant hole that has opened up in Antarctica. According to Motherboard, the "gigantic, mysterious hole" is as large as Lake Superior or the state of Maine. From the report: The gigantic, mysterious hole "is quite remarkable," atmospheric physicist Kent Moore, a professor at the University of Toronto's Mississauga campus, told me over the phone. "It looks like you just punched a hole in the ice." Areas of open water surrounded by sea ice, such as this one, are known as polynyas. They form in coastal regions of Antarctica, Moore told me. What's strange here, though, is that this polynya is "deep in the ice pack," he said, and must have formed through other processes that aren't understood. "This is hundreds of kilometers from the ice edge. If we didn't have a satellite, we wouldn't know it was there." (It measured 80,000 km^2 at its peak.) "This is now the second year in a row it's opened after 40 years of not being there," Moore said. (It opened around September 9.) "We're still trying to figure out what's going on."

Re:IT'S NO JOKE !!

By chill • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Upgrade the universe to 64-bits already!

Re:Water currents.

By hey! • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

That's like saying the bug in this software is probably due to a subroutine.

For those who use metric

By Hognoxious • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

For those who use metric, it's a bit less than three standard Belgiums.

Re:Water currents.

By Ol Olsoc • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Underwater volcanism is my first guess. There is probably a convective current starting from the heated area at sea floor beneath the hole. The heat source was probably always there, but now the temperature of sea water has risen enough that with additional heating it is enough to melt the ice.

Perhaps. I'm a firm believer in the laws of thermodynamics, but I certainly wouldn't declare this as related to AGW. This despite the denialists rushing to declare that people are saying it is, so they can have a strawman to beat up.

And yes folks, we are allowed to speculate. Scientists do this all the time in order to eliminate unlikely candidates for the phenomenon, like the open water being caused by the pancake syrup at iHop.

You are correct that volcanic activity is a good first guess. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/... Antarctica is a pretty busy place in that way. A group has claimed to have found 91 previously unknown volcanoes, https://www.engadget.com/2017/... but these have not been confirmed as of yet.

This one is active and confirmed https://www.livescience.com/41... .

Global warming? I seriously doubt it. A problem for humans? Not unless this is the initial bowshots of a nascent super-volcano. Interesting as all hell, and it surely wouldn't hurt to find out the cause.

Re: Water currents.

By dissy • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Clearly, the real story here is that Lake Superior and the State of Maine are interchangeable units of measuring area. Who Knew?

A little known fact is that Lake Superior and the state of Maine are also physically interchangeable!
This is the reason neither of those things are labeled by name on Google Maps.

Ask Slashdot: What Is Your Favorite William Gibson Novel?

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
dryriver writes: When I first read William Gibson's Neuromancer and then his other novels as a young man back in the 1990s, I was blown away by Gibson's work. Everything was so fresh and out of the ordinary in his books. The writing style. The technologies. The characters and character names. The plotlines. The locations. The future world he imagined. The Matrix. It was unlike anything I had read before. A window into the far future of humanity. I had great hopes over the years that some visionary film director would take a crack at creating film versions of Neuromancer, Count Zero and Mona Lisa Overdrive . But that never happened. All sorts of big budget science fiction was produced for TV and the big screen since Neuromancer that never got anywhere near the brilliance of Gibson's future world. Gibson's world largely stayed on the printed page, and today very few people talk about Neuromancer, even though the world we live in, at times, appears headed in the exact direction Gibson described in his Sprawl trilogy. Why does hardly anybody talk about William Gibson anymore? His books describe a future that is much more technologically advanced than where we are in 2017, so it isn't like his future vision has become "badly dated." To get the conversation going, we rephrased dryriver's question... What is your favorite William Gibson novel?

Never heard of him before.

By Askmum • Score: 3 • Thread
What can I say. Don't know who he is, don't know what kind of books he writes, impossible to say which I like best.

Neuromancer

By jonwil • Score: 4 • Thread

I wish someone would turn Neuromancer into a film, it would be far better than a lot of the garbage we get at the cinema these days.

I like all WIlliam Gibson novels.

By Qbertino • Score: 3 • Thread

I know the neuromancer and the bridge triology and like both. Perhaps the Bridge triology is a bit better because the scenarios described are more plausible, as is the character of Chevette in "Virtual Light".
Then again, in the neuromancer triology all three books where quite memorable, whereas Idoru was sort of meh IMHO.

None

By Bruce Perens • Score: 3, Funny • Thread
I am really enjoying not reading a William Gibson novel right now. Thus, my favorite is None. I hope to continue to enjoy not reading William Gibson for a while. He is indeed one of my favorite authors for not reading.

Re:The one he has not written

By Applehu Akbar • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Can you give an example of writing where there is concrete stuff and substance?

Neal Stephenson. Gibson was a master of creating atmosphere, and then in many cases not taking the story much farther than that.