the unofficial Slashdot digest for 2019-Nov-07 today archive


  1. Sea Levels Will Rise For Centuries Even If Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goals Are Met
  2. AT&T Switches Customers To More Expensive Plans Without Asking Them First
  3. California Wildfires Spark Interest In DIY Home Protection
  4. Microsoft's Rust Experiments Are Going Well, But Some Features Are Missing
  5. Chrome OS 78 Rolling Out With Picture-In-Picture Support For YouTube, Split Browser/Device Settings, More
  6. Mysterious Hacker Dumps Database of Infamous IronMarch Neo-Nazi Forum
  7. DHS Will Soon Have Biometric Data On Nearly 260 Million People
  8. Ahead of Merger, T-Mobile Announces Its Cheapest Phone Plan Ever and 5G Coming December 6th
  9. Amazon Ring Doorbells Exposed Home Wi-Fi Passwords To Hackers
  10. Google-Funded Library Programs Teaching Google-Provided Curricula
  11. Older Samsung Smart TVs, Certain Roku Devices To Lose Netflix Support Next Month
  12. OpenAI Has Published the Text-Generating AI it Said Was Too Dangerous To Share
  13. A Ton of People Received Text Messages Overnight That Were Originally Sent on Valentine's Day
  14. The July Galileo Outage: What Happened and Why
  15. Apple Services Censored in China Where Devices Flourished
  16. Facebook Crypto Boss: 'I Don't Think of Bitcoin as a Currency'
  17. Microsoft's $3,500 HoloLens 2 Starts Shipping
  18. Chronicle, the Google Moonshot Cybersecurity Startup That Was Supposed To Completely Change the Industry, is Imploding
  19. How Cloudflare Stood up to a Patent Troll -- and Won
  20. Adobe Exec Defends Photoshop for iPad After App Falls Flat
  21. First New HIV Strain In 19 Years Identified
  22. A Bipartisan Group of Senators Wants To Extend the Space Station To 2030
  23. Vast Dragnet Targets Theft of Biomedical Secrets For China

Alterslash picks up to the best 5 comments from each of the day’s Slashdot stories, and presents them on a single page for easy reading.

Sea Levels Will Rise For Centuries Even If Greenhouse Gas Emissions Goals Are Met

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Weather Channel: Sea levels will continue to rise for the next three centuries even if governments meet carbon emissions pledges for 2030 set in the Paris climate agreement, a new study indicates. Greenhouse gas emissions from 2016 to 2030 alone would cause sea levels to increase nearly 8 inches (20 cm) by 2300, research led by Climate Analytics and the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research showed. And that doesn't take into account the effects of already irreversible melting of the Antarctic ice sheet, according to a news release about the study.

"Our results show that what we do today will have a huge effect in 2300. Twenty centimeters is very significant; it is basically as much sea-level rise as we've observed over the entire 20th century. To cause that with only 15 years of emissions is quite staggering," said Climate Analytics' Alexander Nauels, lead author of the study. The 8-inch increase is one-fifth of the nearly 40-inch total rise in sea levels expected by 2300, according to the study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. More than half of the 8-inch increase can be attributed to emissions from the world's top five polluters: China, the United States, the European Union, India and Russia, the study found.
"Only stringent near-term emission reductions" aimed at preventing global temperatures from rising more than the Paris agreement goal would provide a chance of limiting long-term sea level rise to below 40 inches, the study said. Global greenhouse gas emissions, however, have not shown a sign of peaking since the adoption of the Paris agreement and the individual countries' pledges "are inadequate to put the global community on track to meet the Paris agreement Long-term Temperature Goal by the end of the 21st century."

Re:which is funny...

By CrimsonAvenger • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

... given that one mentally ill person thought he could build a shoe bomb and suddently we all have to take off our shoes to get on airplanes... I mean, this nation changes things radically on the slightest grounds but killing the planet at a global scale... no problem.

Of course, if this nation were to eliminate all CO2 emissions tomorrow, the emissions controlled by other nations (China, specifically) would mean we'd just delay the problem by a few decades.

Of course, making plans based on conditions 300 years from now would be a lot like William of Orange making plans for today. And about as likely as his plans coming to pass....

Re: Key part

By XXongo • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
Correct. Demographers have found three things correlate with reduced population growth:

1. Decrease in poverty. Poor people have more kids.
2. Increase in education. People with more education have fewer kids.
3. Increase in access to birth control. Independent of the other two factors, people with good access to birth control have fewer kids.

Re:Key part

By XXongo • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Unfortunately for all of us, the laws of physics don't give a shit about shortsighted people.

True, but that goes both ways Like those people pretending to be able to predict the weather in 50-100 years when they can't even predict next week.

Climate confused with weather. Again.

I think you probably actually do know the difference, but you're a troll, you pretend you don't because you aren't interested in a discussion, you just want to spread confusion.

Re:deep shit when they

By apoc.famine • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Right. All this nonsense is about protecting the real estate properties of the coastal rich.

No you dumb fuck. Have you heard of Bangladesh? Country of 163 million very poor people, average elevation is something like 3-4 meters above sea level, and a good 10% of it is under 1m above sea level. Not to mention that a lot of it is built on reclaimed river delta mud, so 1m of sea level rise will likely carve out a whole lot of it.

Lots of similar situations all through SE Asia, Africa, and South America impacting hundreds of millions of people.

A harder to estimate problem is how river deltas change when sea level rises and high tides back the water up. It's quite likely that we'll see inland flooding because of this, where rivers overflow due to an inability to drain into the ocean. Wealthy developed countries will deal with this somewhat well, but there are a whole lot of poor countries with a lot of poor fishermen who have their lives tied up on the banks of rivers near the ocean.

And it's not slow change that will impact them. It's going to gradually get worse until that one fateful storm at high tide, and then a village is gone.

When the wealthy get sick of rebuilding with their insurance money they'll just relocate. It's really easy to relocate your second or third home. It's not so easy to do if you don't have the education or the internet to figure out where to go and don't have the money for a new house and can't pack up your current home and move it with you and don't have any job skills that would be useful anywhere other than fishing in the ocean.

This sort of shit is why a subset of the population is worried about climate change. Humanitarian crises forcing small armies of people to relocate cause a ripple effect through the region. Shit like this his historically caused famine, disease, wars, and war crimes. When a developed country's solution to mass immigration is to lock people up in cages, what do you think an undeveloped country's solution is going to be?

Re:Carbon sequestration

By polyp2000 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Other opinions differ.

Reducing CO2 and Greenhouse Gases

Recycled Paper and Greenhouse Gases
When it reaches the end of its life-cycle, paper that is sent to landfill or incinerated will produce further greenhouse gases as it degrades. Greenhouse gas emissions have caused a rapid increase in the Earth’s temperature which, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), has risen by over 0.7C in Europe over the last century.

That’s why it’s so important to recycle paper and give it a second life. In comparison:

Manufacturing recycled paper produces less CO2 and Greenhouse gases than virgin fibre paper.
Manufacturing one tonne of 100% recycled paper emits 38% less CO2* than paper produced from virgin fibres. The emissions saved is the equivalent to driving from Paris to Moscow in the average European car.
*based on Eural figures

Assessing our emissions
Arjowiggins Graphic has chosen to have its greenhouse gas emissions assessed by a recognised independent body; Labelia Conseil. This ensures figures presented in the Environmental Benefit Statement and in our Environmental Declarations are accurate and definite.

The inclusion of an ‘Environmental Declaration’ on every Arjowiggins Graphic product range provides the customer with clear information on the carbon footprint associated with their choice of paper.

“WWF International works with best-in-class companies in order to effect change throughout the entire sector by pushing sector leaders to take on ever more ambitious CO2 reduction targets. The Arjowiggins Graphic agreement is an opportunity to demonstrate that low carbon solutions exist even within sectors that are generally considered difficult.”
Bruce Haase, Head Climate and Business Engagement at WWF International:

AT&T Switches Customers To More Expensive Plans Without Asking Them First

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
AT&T is adding $10 to the monthly bills of customers with certain grandfathered mobile-data plans and not letting them switch back to their older packages. AT&T is pitching the change as a "bonus" because it's also adding 15GB to the customers' monthly data allotments. Ars Technica reports: "Enjoy more data," AT&T says in a support document. "Starting with your October 2019 bill, you'll get an additional 15GB of data on your Mobile Share plan. This bonus data comes with a $10 price increase." Paying an extra $10 for another 15GB isn't a bad deal as far as U.S. wireless prices go, but that's only true if you actually need the extra data. The plans getting the data-and-price increases already had between 20GB and 60GB of data per month at prices that ranged from $100 to $225. Now those plans have 35GB to 75GB and cost $110 to $235. (The data allotments can be shared among multiple people on the same family plan.)

These Mobile Share Value plans were introduced in December 2013 and are apparently no longer offered to new customers. This is at least the second time this year that AT&T has added $10 and extra data to customer bills; a previous increase took effect between March and May and mostly affected a different set of Mobile Share Value plans, according to another AT&T support document. AT&T confirmed that there's no way to opt out of the new $10 increase, The Verge reported yesterday.

Re:Meanwhile everywhere else in the developed worl

By gl4ss • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

you must live in one of those countries the size of a US city

this is a common misconception and a lie perpetrated by the operators in usa.

MEANWHILE IN REALITY IN FRIGGING LAPLAND you can get unlimited 3g/4g for 10 bucks per month. not 50gb, not 25gb, not 15gb - actually unlimited torrent all the f you want out of it.

there's no way to slice it other way: countries with higher density of population have cheaper mobile data. countries with lower density have cheaper mobile data - and in other countries people aren't paying a ridiculous premium to get "free" phones as much as in usa either(the monthly payments for the phone are laid out actually separately).

and whats more, the other countries have more of it so it's actually usable. you can actually use it. I hardly ever bother logging into wifi because it's just not worth the effort and this is in thailand that has more expensive 3g/4g than finland. this situations been going on in regards of mobile service and fees and generating massive extra income for american operators for roughly two decades now.

in any other country if they just upped the price by 10 bucks everyone would just ditch them.

Is anyone suing?

By AndyKron • Score: 3 • Thread
Sounds like fraud to me.

There is a way to opt out

By misnohmer • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

Of course there is a way to opt out, switch carriers. Any term commitments are voided if AT&T is the one breaking the terms.

Corporate Arrogance - The New Policy

By geekmux • Score: 3 • Thread

Dear Consumers,

We're all Too Big To Fail now. If you don't know that by now, we sure as hell do. You're gonna bend over and take this price increase and like it, because we already know you're too fucking lazy to actually get off your ass and do anything about it.

Fuck You Very Much, and Have a Nice Day.

Hugs and Kisses,

- Every Mega-Corp CEO

PS. We'll be back in 6 months to do it again. So will our collusi, er I mean competition.

An old dog, old trick.

By TheHawke • Score: 3 • Thread

This is called cramming, or switching. Telecoms are NOT permitted to do this, no matter what the service they are affecting. Normally, they would grandfather in the plans and leave them be, but AT&T seems to be desperate to get their butts whipped by the state and feds.

So be it.

California Wildfires Spark Interest In DIY Home Protection

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
As California struggles through a wildfire season that has forced hundreds of thousands of people to flee and burned hundreds of homes, researchers are seeking ways to protect buildings including by wrapping them in "fire blankets." Reuters reports: Last month, Fumiaki Takahashi, a professor at Case Western Reserve University in Ohio, published the findings of 10 years of research on the potential for sheets of fire-resistant material to preserve homes. The blankets work but only in certain conditions, he said. "Each fire is different and each house is different," he noted. The blankets can withstand intensive fire exposure for little more than 10 minutes and take hours or days to apply.

Dan Hirning, CEO of California-based FireZat Inc, which supplies fire "shields" made from one of the materials tested by Takahashi, said people could wrap their homes in the blankets independent of fire officials. Applying a fire blanket to an average home would take four to five hours, with four people working on it, he noted. One reusable roll of FireZat's material can cover 1,500 square feet (about 140 square meters) and costs close to $900. The shields are made of a flexible aluminum sheet and a fiberglass backing held together by an acrylic adhesive to form a fire barrier built to withstand heat of up to 550 degrees Celsius (1,022 degrees Fahrenheit).
The National Fire Protection Association's "Firewise" program can also help communities by helping people stop fire from spreading to their homes by encouraging them to clear flammable materials from around the structure. Unfortunately, it's really only effective when an entire neighborhood participates.

Generator, water tank, sprinkler on the roof

By drinkypoo • Score: 3 • Thread

You can build a stand for a sprinkler to sit on the peak of a roof out of pipe pieces. If you have water pressure (which you can arrange to have, if you're motivated) you can keep your roof damp, and put out cinders that fall on it.

Flammable roofing ought to be illegal in California. Metal roofs last longer anyway, and the well-designed ones channel away water even when they leak. Pests can't infest them.

Re:Soffit vents

By Kyr Arvin • Score: 4 • Thread

I used to live in the area that had the recent Tick fire in Los Angeles county, The houses mostly have concrete tile roofs which are fire proof. The houses catch fire when embers are drawn into the attic through the soffit vents. Having an easy method to close them would prevent many house fires.

It also depends on how hot the fire is, how close it is to the house, and how long it heats the house. I have a cousin whose house burned in the Tubbs fire two years ago. After his family left, he'd stayed to grab some documents even as the flames were fairly close. He knew he'd overstayed his time and that it was time to leave RIGHT NOW when his neighbor's house just erupted into flames from within. The house itself hadn't been burning, but the ambient heat next to it was so great that eventually the flammable materials inside reached a flash point and the house burned from within.

Re:May I suggest tinfoil?

By melted • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

CA does not allow proper forest management irrespective of who's land it is, and it hasn't for decades. It's now also politically more advantageous to blame the fires on "climate change" (which they have nothing to do with whatsoever), so you can count on forest management not happening in the future as well.

Re:May I suggest tinfoil?

By drinkypoo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

CA does not allow proper forest management irrespective of who's land it is, and it hasn't for decades

CA has only limited control over forest management in BLM lands, and none in national parks. They're not allowed to do anything that interferes with grazing or resource extraction in BLM lands. Most of California north of Lake county is under the BLM. Most of the acres of forest burned are on federal lands.

It's now also politically more advantageous to blame the fires on "climate change" (which they have nothing to do with whatsoever),

Climate change exacerbates conditions. Firefighters are now seeing behavior from fires they've never seen before, like more severe uberschlag, and fire tornadoes.

Re:May I suggest tinfoil?

By melted • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

News flash: harvesting prevents the trees from dying en masse due to insufficient water in the underlying waterbed, and removes flammable material from the forest. And California Air Resources Board can prevent controlled burns (the main method of large scale forest management) from taking place even on federal lands.

Microsoft's Rust Experiments Are Going Well, But Some Features Are Missing

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Microsoft gave a status update today on its experiments on using the Rust programming language instead of C and C++ to write Windows components. From a report: Microsoft began experimenting with Rust over the summer. The Redmond-based software giant said it was interested in Rust because, over the past decade, more than 70% of the security patches it shipped out fixed memory-related bugs, an issue that Rust was created to address.

[...] Today, almost four months later, we got the first feedback. "I've been tasked with an experimental rewrite of a low-level system component of the Windows codebase (sorry, we can't say which one yet)," said Adam Burch, Software Engineer at the Microsoft Hyper-V team, in a blog post today. "Though the project is not yet finished, I can say that my experience with Rust has been generally positive," Burch added. "In general, new components or existing components with clean interfaces will be the easiest to port to Rust," the Microsoft engineer said. However, not all things went smoothly. It would have been unrealistic if we expected they would. Burch cited the lack of safe transmutation, safe support for C style unions, fallible allocation, and a lack of support for at-scale unit testing, needed for Microsoft's sprawling code-testing infrastructure.

Look in the mirror

By raymorris • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

If you'd like see Microsoft's code tester, look in the mirror.

New Rust belt

By jfdavis668 • Score: 3, Funny • Thread
When all these west coast companies convert, we will have a new Rust belt.

Features missing from what?

By Dan East • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Burch cited the lack of safe transmutation, safe support for C style unions, fallible allocation

Rust is missing these things compared to what? I didn't know any of that was "safe" in C or C++ in the first place.

Cool and Exciting

By DatbeDank • Score: 3 • Thread

Really interesting read. I never knew about these considerations needed for coding in those different languages.

I really like the Microsoft of the 2019s. It's matured quite a bit from a bombastic 90s demon to a surprisingly mature and yet innovative IBM like entity.

Chrome OS 78 Rolling Out With Picture-In-Picture Support For YouTube, Split Browser/Device Settings, More

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
The latest version of Chrome OS, version 78, adds separate browser and device settings, click-to-call, and picture-in-picture support for YouTube. It also introduces virtual desktop support for the operating system with a feature called Virtual Desks. 9to5Google reports: Chrome is getting another cross-device sharing feature after "Send this page" widely rolled in September. With "click-to-call," you can right-click on phone number links -- like tel:800-800-8000 -- to have them sent to your Android device. It's quicker than manually entering those digits or transferring via email. Chrome OS 78 will separate browser and device settings. The former is accessible directly at chrome://settings and what opens when clicking "Settings" at the bottom of the Overflow menu in the top-right corner of any browser window. It opens as a tab and provides web-related preferences. Meanwhile, chrome://os-settings opens as its own window, and can be accessed from the quick settings sheet. It provides device options like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Assistant in a white Material Theme UI with an icon in the launcher/app shelf.

YouTube for Android now supports picture-in-picture with Chrome OS 78. After starting a video in the mobile client, switching to another window, covering, or minimizing the app will automatically open a PiP in the bottom-right corner. Available controls include switching to audio, play/pause, and skipping to the next track. In the top-left, you can expand the window and a settings gear on the other side allows you to open system settings. Tapping in the center expands and returns you to the YouTube Android app.
Chrome OS 78 simplifies the printing experience by automatically listing compatible printers without any prior setup required. There are also a number of Linux on Chrome OS enhancements in this version:

- Backups of Linux apps and files can now be saved to local storage, external drive, or Google Drive. That copy can be then restored when setting up a new computer.
- Crostini GPU support will be enabled by default for a "crisp, lower-latency experience."
- You'll be warned when using a Linux app that does not support virtual keyboard in tablet mode.

Is Chrome an OS or Browser?

By rsborg • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

Because a lot of this stuff isn't important to me for a browser. But then again, I use Firefox.

Youtube Does Not Need PiP

By Greyfox • Score: 3 • Thread
Youtube does not need picture in picture support! God damn it people, just how short is you attenSQUIRREL!

Mysterious Hacker Dumps Database of Infamous IronMarch Neo-Nazi Forum

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
Freshly Exhumed shares a report from ZDNet: A mysterious hacker has published today a database dump of one of the internet's most infamous neo-nazi meeting places -- the IronMarch forum. The data published today includes a full copy of its content, including sensitive details such as emails, IP addresses, usernames, and private messages. The database dump is currently being analyzed by a multitude of entities, including law enforcement, in the hopes of linking forum members to accounts on other sites and potentially exposing their real-world identities. The drive to unmask forum members comes from the fact that IronMarch, while a little-known site to most internet users, has been the birthplace of two of today's most extreme far-right neo-nazi movements -- the Atomwaffen Division and SIEGE Culture -- with the first being accused of orchestrating at least eight murders around the world. The forum's data was published earlier today via the Internet Archive portal.

"The published information includes a carbon copy of the site, from user details to forum posts, and from private messages to multi-factor authentication settings and forum management logs," reports BleepingComputer. "The forum's database includes details on 3,548 registered profiles. The last user's database ID is 15,218; however, the dump only included details on 3,548 accounts -- most likely due to spam or deleted profiles. The registration date for the last user is November 20, 2017, suggesting the database is a copy of the site near the time it went offline."

Re: Nazism has never been very big in the USA.

By AmiMoJo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

In 2018 all extremist murders in the US were linked to the far right:

As best as I can determine, and according to the ADL, Antifa has never been linked to any murders.

Of course there is lower level violence for which I don't have stats right now and is likely difficult to quantify. Murders are easier because the murderers are prosecuted which involves establishing motive in open court.

Re: Nazism has never been very big in the USA.

By mwvdlee • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

When was the last time you heard a neo-nazi doing anything like that? 40-70 years ago.

Murder, 2 years ago:

Re: Nazism has never been very big in the USA.

By AmiMoJo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

The groups using this site include members like James Alex Fields, the guy who murdered a protester by ramming her with his car at Charlottesville. He was one of the ones chanting "Jews will not replace us" and hanging out with the swastika-tattoo boys.

Let's not pretend it's some exaggeration to call those people Nazis. The were quite open about self-identifying as Nazis. Proud of being Nazis.

This kind of denial is so common it's become a meme.

Re: Nazism has never been very big in the USA.

By mobby_6kl • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Read the FBI's or Statistics Canada's own data on it if you want. Neo-nazi's have been a bogeyman for 40 years ever since the political left decided that it was a great way forward to fearmonger people into things. And before someone goes retarded, yes it was the left who started the "our enemies are nazis" bullshit.

Yeah ok.
"The FBI, on the other hand, has already concluded that white supremacists, including neo-Nazi supporters and members of the Ku Klux Klan, are in fact responsible for the lionâ(TM)s share of violent attacks among domestic extremist groups. White supremacists 'were responsible for 49 homicides in 26 attacks from 2000 to 2016 ⦠more than any other domestic extremist movement'â
And here's director Wray saying it:

Or is Trump's FBI a left-wing organization now? Deep state?

Considering their definition of "white supremacist" is anyone who isn't extreme left, that makes things a bit more interesting.

When were Antifa fighting Hillary or Biden supporters? I might've missed it.

But you haven't heard them operating as an organized crime ring? You can go read the german media where antifa was shaking down businesses so they wouldn't get torched during the last G7. The various branches have openly supported murder of political opponents, and there's various manifestos and planning guides you can find that were published by the various groups in various countries. And no terrorist acts? Uh dude, friend, guy, pal. There's been plenty, hit your favorite search engine. I mean they were engaging in political terrorism in Hamilton, Ontario last year.

You should cite your shit. Are your referring to shouting at PPC supporters at a party meeting as political terrorism?

As for scourge worse then neo-nazis? You bet. When you have an ideology and a group of people that are actively out there right now, assaulting people, burning down property, engaging in violence to stop the political process. At what point do you not consider them a scourge worse. When was the last time you heard a neo-nazi doing anything like that? 40-70 years ago.

You're describing the neo-nazis. Per FBI, they make up the majority of domestic extremest terrorism. Antifa... might've punched someone during a skirmish or something? Oh no.

It's not like left-wing terrorism can't or doesn't exist, but Antifa ain't it, so you should stop using it as cover for white supremacists and other right-wing nutjobs.

Re: Nazism has never been very big in the USA.

By twocows • Score: 4 • Thread
He's pointing out that the violent behavior of the Nazis' political opponents contributed at least in part to their uprising. This is true, and obviously so, as such behavior only served to legitimize their claims to the German citizenry.

The real question we should be asking is, what is the proper response to violent extremism to prevent it from gaining traction with the public? He correctly points out that violent extremism of another type is not a good response. I would add that doing nothing is also not a valid response; appeasement didn't work against the Nazis, either.

I think the correct response is to demonstrate peacefully, with both words and actions, why their ideology is wrong. I would suggest looking to people like Martin Luther King, Jr. for inspiration as to how to successfully change the minds of people who have internalized hateful ideologies.

DHS Will Soon Have Biometric Data On Nearly 260 Million People

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) expects to have face, fingerprint, and iris scans of at least 259 million people in its biometrics database by 2022, according to a recent presentation from the agency's Office of Procurement Operations reviewed by Quartz. From the report: That's about 40 million more than the agency's 2017 projections, which estimated 220 million unique identities by 2022, according to previous figures cited by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a San Francisco-based privacy rights nonprofit.

A slide deck, shared with attendees at an Oct. 30 DHS industry day, includes a breakdown of what its systems currently contain, as well as an estimate of what the next few years will bring. The agency is transitioning from a legacy system called IDENT to a cloud-based system (hosted by Amazon Web Services) known as Homeland Advanced Recognition Technology, or HART. The biometrics collection maintained by DHS is the world's second-largest, behind only India's countrywide biometric ID network in size. The traveler data kept by DHS is shared with other U.S. agencies, state and local law enforcement, as well as foreign governments.

Re:The US is police state

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Treating people like criminals. Guilty until proven innocent.

So? There is nothing new about this. 20 years ago, when the Innocence Project began using DNA evidence to review convictions, they found that 10% of the defendants couldn't possibly have committed the crimes they were accused of. That doesn't mean 10% were innocent, it means 10% is the MINIMUM rate of false convictions. The real rate is believed to be much higher.

Since then the rate of incarceration and the rate of coerced plea deals have gone way up. So it is now "Guilty with no chance to prove innocence".

So what can you do about it? When you get a flyer from a politician who promises to get "tough on crime" and is endorsed by the police, please vote for someone else.

"Living document"

By Empiric • Score: 3 • Thread

Amendment IV
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.

"The database" doesn't count as the "particular place to be searched".

Re:The US is police state

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

10% (or more) of crimes were unsolved

More than 90% of property crimes are not solved.

About 80% of violent crimes are not solved.

So, yes, more than 10%.

Most crimes go unsolved

A high probability of getting caught is a way better deterrent than harsh punishment. We should spend less on prisons and more on hiring smarter police.

Re:The part that bothers me most

By AHuxley • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
Re "travelers"... people who want to enter the USA for some reason. The USA did not face them, make them, demand travel to, via the USA.
Want to enter, travel, visit, stay in the USA, then part of that is a passport, a reason and not been a criminal, not been part of/supporting a banned group...
Re "begin their internet travel research"... Many criminals find people with no criminal past and have a "created" passport and rushed/no "travel research".
The question on arrival in any nation by waiting security is when did you plan your holiday, what did you want to do/see, where are you staying? How much money do you have...
People doing crime usually have very different internet use patterns than normal people visiting friends/faimly, been on holiday, who have arrived for further education, who know something about the USA and have had a holiday planned for some time, who have the money in a bank to support their holiday...
Wonder why police and security can detect criminals on arrival? Its their pattern of internet use, their friends, their family, their pattern of getting passport, their paying for the travel, the time spent planning a holiday...
Nothing looks like normal people in their past internet travel research, social media use.
Everything looks like someone got a new passport and that someone paid for their US travel for them...
Did they pack their own clothing as part of a criminal deal or do they have to carry something given to them? New clothing packed in by criminals that is the wrong size? Someone packed everything for them....
That does not fit with past spending, images on social media and the "work" of the person who now wants to "holiday" in the USA?
They then totally fail the most easy question of why they are in the USA, what they are doing, when did they start planning to come to the USA....
They have no contacts in the USA, can't articulate anything they want to do in the USA...
Thats why the internet travel research is a vital tool per person seeking to enter the USA for US police/gov, security and mil to study before the person enters the USA...
That face on social media who requested a passport and who now wants to enter the USA quickly who no past interest/connections/not much wealth... who are they, why the sudden and direct interest in the USA... the sudden money to travel...
Why did their failed/3rd/2nd world nation grant them a passport so quickly? Why do they suddenly have a new bank account with some extra money
Not from their low wage, the money their extended family put in for them?
Just days before that "rushed" but now well "planned" travel to the USA?

Thats why social media matters and why every person entering the USA has their social media considered well before arrival in the USA... its packed with interesting information that's very telling about the person and they many lies they will be telling when asked the most simple of holiday/study/travel/USA related questions...

Ahead of Merger, T-Mobile Announces Its Cheapest Phone Plan Ever and 5G Coming December 6th

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
The T-Mobile and Sprint merger hasn't been officially completed yet, but that hasn't stopped the "Un-carrier" from talking about what it will do with its newfound resources. T-Mobile announced today that it plans to launch the company's cheapest phone plan ever and roll out its 5G network starting December 6th. Gizmodo reports: Starting at just $15 a month, the new T-Mobile Connect plan offers unlimited talk and text plus 2GB of 4G or 5G data. Now admittedly, 2GB of data per month isn't all that much, but considering the T-Mobile's current least expensive plans start at $30 a month (and that's including a discount for having four lines), T-Mobile Connect could provide some much-needed savings for low-income families -- at least temporarily while it gathers all the goodwill it can muster in the merger process. Additionally, T-Mobile also teased two other new programs with its Connecting Heroes Initiative, which promises to give unlimited talk, text and 5G access to every first responder in the U.S. for the next 10 years. This includes public and non-profit fire, police, and EMS personnel. Then there's T-Mobile's Project 10 Million, which promises to handout 10 million hotspots to students across the country that will provide up to 100GB of free mobile data per year. With Project 10 Million, T-Mobile is hoping to give children and students greater access to broadband internet in order to make completing homework just a bit easier.

Also, next month T-Mobile says it will turn on its nationwide 5G network on December 6th, which promises to bring 5G coverage to over 200 million Americans in more than 5,000 cities. That said, this 5G network won't have the combined resources of both T-Mobile and Sprint until sometime in 2020 when T-Mobile can integrate its mmWave and sub-6GHz spectrum with Sprint's mid-brand spectrum. Looking even further ahead, T-Mobile claims its new 5G network will offer 14 times more capacity than it could on its own, and that the combined T-Mobile/Sprint network will cover 85 percent of the rural U.S. within three years, and 90 percent coverage after six years.

This is Step 2, ladies and gentlemen

By Hallux-F-Sinister • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The plan goes a little something like this:

Step 1: Navigate technical details of merger, pay everyone off so you’ll be allowed to do anti-competitive thing that will ultimately harm consumers: congressmen, senators... members of the FTC and FCC... anyone likely to object and be in a position such that that person’s objection matters.

Step 2: Announce something publicly that makes the common people think the merger will be great for them, like a really inexpensive plan. For example, get people to talk about it on tech websites like Gizmodo, then rely on the internet’s favorite mode of functionality, plagiarism, basically, the repeating or reposting of news you saw somewhere else without paying the original author. Spreads that announcement like a California wildfire blown by the Santa Ana winds.

Step 3: When the merger is all done and all the dust settled, a year or so after the merger was completed, stop offering cheapest plan; (for example, make an even BETTER plan but make it a limited time offer, after which everyone gets automatically bumped up to a more expensive tier, or has to choose an even cheaper one but which is unpalatable for some reason, i.e., data costs extra); let only people who already signed up keep it for a while longer so they won’t raise a fuss.

Step 4: About two or three years after the merger, ensure that it is the case that every single customer is paying more for the same service than they were before, to recoup the extra costs associated with the merger, and having to placate the hoi polloi so they wouldn’t demand their lawmakers stop the merger, (which would mean having to pay even larger bribes to even more people to let it happen,) and everything they lost giving away cheaper service. For example, make a rule that you cannot put a newer model phone onto an old plan... i.e., by saying the NEW plans are ONLY for “5G” (LOL) capable phones, and you cannot put a “5G” capable phone on a plan that doesn’t have “5G” data, even though they’ll be backwards-compatible all the way back to 3G. Pay off “partners” who make phones to put in software or make hardware that makes 5G phones not backwards compatible even though there’s no technical reason for it not to be. OR get them to break backwards compatibility with an essential update. When people bitch, which some will, offer them a one-month statement credit to shut them up. (If they continue to complain, offer to release them from their contract, and suggest they try a different provider; have one of your employees apologize profusely and wish they wouldn’t leave, even though you don’t care if they do. After all, your competitors are all owned by the same rich assholes so it’s not like they’re actually losing any money, and your competition is all doing the same kind of thing.)

Step 5: Find another competitor you’d like to merge with to eliminate costly competition and limit consumer’s choice to try to force them to pay more for the same service that your company provides. Arrange details of merger with other company, get shareholders and directors to sign off by convincing them you’ll make them even richer... show them this plan and point to this step specifically. Cover this last sentence with your thumb. Or don’t. They know the score.

Step 6: Go to step 1, and repeat as necessary until you own all the money in the world.

Think I’m wrong? See if T-Mobspint’s still offering such great deals in two or three years, or if it hasn’t gone back to business as usual or worse.

Corollary question: do you know what your cell phone service’s monthly payments would be, and how good the service would be if there were only one carrier?

Ask your great grandparents, (if you still have any,) what experience they had using the phone or dealing with the phone company before the US Government broke up “Ma Bell,

Whats the catch?

By 140Mandak262Jamuna • Score: 3 • Thread
Beware of phone companies bearing gifts,

Assuming it throttles after 2GB, not bad.

By twocows • Score: 3 • Thread
I go through Red Pocket, an MVNO, and pay $10/mo for 300MB of data. That's a pretty substantial step up for an extra $5/mo. I'd still stay with my plan since I never even come close to hitting my 300MB each month, but I know a lot of people who might want to get something like this.

Amazon Ring Doorbells Exposed Home Wi-Fi Passwords To Hackers

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from TechCrunch: Security researchers have discovered a vulnerability in Ring doorbells that exposed the passwords for the Wi-Fi networks to which they were connected. Bitdefender said the Amazon-owned doorbell was sending owners' Wi-Fi passwords in cleartext as the doorbell joins the local network, allowing nearby hackers to intercept the Wi-Fi password and gain access to the network to launch larger attacks or conduct surveillance.

"When first configuring the device, the smartphone app must send the wireless network credentials. This takes place in an unsecure manner, through an unprotected access point," said Bitdefender. "Once this network is up, the app connects to it automatically, queries the device, then sends the credentials to the local network." But all of this is carried out over an unencrypted connection, exposing the Wi-Fi password that is sent over the air. Amazon fixed the vulnerability in all Ring devices in September, but the vulnerability was only disclosed today.

This ain't a bug

By ptaff • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

This is not a bug, it's a stupid _design_ decision that shows how much fucks are given: exactly zero. Remember, in IoT, "S" stands for "Security".

Google-Funded Library Programs Teaching Google-Provided Curricula

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
theodp writes: Q. What's the difference between Andrew Carnegie and Google? A. Andrew Carnegie used his wealth to help build libraries, while Google's using its wealth to get libraries to help build its brands. "In advance of Computer Science Education Week (CSEdWeek)," announced the American Library Association (ALA), "an annual event to get students excited about coding, ALA will be awarding $300 mini-grants to school and public libraries that facilitate a program for youth during Computer Science Education Week, December 9-15, 2019, using Google's CS First Hour of Code activity. This year, youth can use their imagination to turn a real-life hero into a superhero using code. Code Your Hero is an activity that honors the everyday heroes in our students' lives who use their powers to better their communities. Libraries Ready to Code is an initiative of the American Library Association (ALA) and sponsored by Google, which aims to ensure libraries have the resources, capacity, and inspiration to embrace activities that promote computational thinking (CT) and coding among our nation's youth."

Last month, the ALA announced it had received a $2 million grant to develop library entrepreneurship centers. In advance of last December's CSEdWeek, Google announced a $1 million sponsorship to the ALA, creating a pool of micro-funds that local libraries could access to bring digital skills training to their community in conjunction with the Libraries Lead with Digital Skills and Libraries Ready to Code ALA-Google joint initiatives.

One other slight difference...

By RightSaidFred99 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

This is an especially dumb summary, half-literate formatting aside.

Andrew Carnegie was an individual while Google is a corporation. Stockholders tend to frown on altruistic philanthropy done with their money. Note this doesn't mean no philanthropy is done or should be done by corporations, simply that it should be done with some sort of benefit to the corporation be it via good PR or an expected benefit of some sort.

Now, if one of the Google founders personally donated e.g. $100M to some charity with strings attached that benefited Google directly, then you would have a point.


By Sarten-X • Score: 3 • Thread

The role of a modern library isn't just a place where books go to die. They are centers of lifelong education and skills development, ersatz offices, and community centers.

Sure, Google gives them boatloads of money to use Google's educational programs. Of course, Google thinks that Google's programs are best... Maybe because they're biased, but maybe also because if the project managers didn't like what they'd produced, they'd be the ones with the power to produce something different.

I seem to recall similar complaints against Microsoft, but there's an important distinction: Microsoft actively sought to exclude its competition, whereas Google still works toward compatibility. As long as a Google user can still move to or from anything else they decide they prefer, I have no qualms about seeing their brand alongside an educational program. Let's go ahead and complain about the bad things companies do, but perhaps we shouldn't malign education just because it comes with a name, okay?

Pay your damn taxes, Google

By Atmchicago • Score: 3 • Thread
Pay your taxes like ordinary folks do, and then we can fund our own libraries ourselves.

Older Samsung Smart TVs, Certain Roku Devices To Lose Netflix Support Next Month

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
An unspecified number of smart TVs manufactured by Samsung will lose native support for Netflix next month, the companies said in an announcement this week. From a report: Netflix app installed -- or available for -- Samsung smart TVs manufactured in 2010 and 2011 (C and D lineups) -- and likely sold for many years after that -- will stop functioning December 2, Samsung alerted customers this week. In a statement, a company spokesperson said these TV models were sold only in the U.S. and Canada. In its statement, the top smart TV manufacturer advised affected customers to look for a game console, streaming media player, set-top box or other devices that still support Netflix app to continue their binge-watching sessions. A Netflix spokesperson cited technical limitations for the change. The developement comes weeks after Netflix alerted several Roku customers that they, too, will lose access to the streaming service on December 1.

Re:Sign of the times

By Rob Y. • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

You're both missing the point. Why can't you just buy a TV these days without all the 3rd party apps that will eventually go obsolete. I guess putting all that stuff on a TV that is essentially a computer anyway doesn't cost you (much) more. But I'd rather have more inputs and, yes, rely on a cheap external device to access content.

My Samsung set (an older 1080P model I bought recently because the viewing angles are shit on the 'better' newer, similarly priced 4K ones) has so many apps to scroll through, it's a big pain (okay, a little pain) - and it insists on returning you to their 'smart hub' menu whenever you exit the settings menu. But hey, Netflix still works on it... for now (but apparently not for as long as if I'd bought the shitty 4K model I didn't like).

Re:Cue class-action suit in 3...

By JeffOwl • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread
You mean like my 32 year old motorcycle that can have certain parts physically damaged by even 10% ethanol? Where they recommend either running ethanol free gas or installing after market lines and seals, and a carburetor rebuild, and don't even think about spilling any on the paint. It wasn't the bike that went bad all of a sudden, the fuel changed for reasons unrelated to the bike.

Re:Sign of the times

By Killall -9 Bash • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
Why "ok boomer" infuriates me: you dubmass kids think I'm a boomer.

Baby-boomers were born right after WWII. 1940's and 1950s. I'm not 70.

Normally I wouldn't give a fuck, but I don't want to be confused with the generation that fucked us. I'm GenX. Boomers are my parents generation.

"ok, boomer" is the new "whatever, old man".... unapologetic ageism aimed at anyone over 30. Choke on some avocado toast faggot.

PS: please lie to me and tell me you're doing it ironically.

Re: Sign of the times

By Malc • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Actually, it could be. Some of these older devices canâ(TM)t handle the newer AVC profiles or GOP structures like pyramid B-frames for example. Then they have the challenge of updating software on otherwise obsolete devices. It becomes difficult and expensive keeping around enough old hardware to test on. How well are older Android phones supported, and then extrapolate that to a TV? The idea of one box and one remote is nice, but maybe dumb TVs are the better choice long term.

I canâ(TM)t comment about these particular TVs, but we had problems 2-3 years ago with some Sony TVs that couldnâ(TM)t handle pyramid B-frames, and its player based on Exoplayer couldnâ(TM)t handle some fairly basic features of the MPEG-DASH IOP in the playback manifest file

The only reliable "smart TV": notebook in HDMI

By fbobraga • Score: 3 • Thread
My old 32" "dumb TV" is a reliable "smart TV" since 2010 :P

OpenAI Has Published the Text-Generating AI it Said Was Too Dangerous To Share

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
The research lab OpenAI has released the full version of a text-generating AI system that experts warned could be used for malicious purposes. From a report: The institute originally announced the system, GPT-2, in February this year, but withheld the full version of the program out of fear it would be used to spread fake news, spam, and disinformation. Since then it's released smaller, less complex versions of GPT-2 and studied their reception. Others also replicated the work. In a blog post this week, OpenAI now says it's seen "no strong evidence of misuse" and has released the model in full.

GPT-2 is part of a new breed of text-generation systems that have impressed experts with their ability to generate coherent text from minimal prompts. The system was trained on eight million text documents scraped from the web and responds to text snippets supplied by users. Feed it a fake headline, for example, and it will write a news story; give it the first line of a poem and it'll supply a whole verse. It's tricky to convey exactly how good GPT-2's output is, but the model frequently produces eerily cogent writing that can often give the appearance of intelligence (though that's not to say what GPT-2 is doing involves anything we'd recognize as cognition).

Play With It Here

By bartle • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

The article links to this location where a user an enter their own custom prompt and allow their "AI" to generate additional content.

Enter a few custom prompts and you'll soon get a sense for its strength and weaknesses. It seems to do best when prompted about some current news - presumably it has a wealth of source material to draw on. It's far weaker when the prompt contains fictional proper names.

Max Headroom

By lobiusmoop • Score: 3 • Thread

This needs to be hooked up to a digital virtual head generator and voice synth and it can generate hours of mindless daytime filler TV.

I got this! Pedophilia fiction.

By Nicopa • Score: 3, Interesting • Thread

I typed jokingly "Se likes sex. A lot" to see what this AI tool will generate. This is what I got:

She likes sex. A lot. Like a lot a lot."

The girl with the most sexual prowess is the one you see first: a little boy, perhaps, who looks at you with wide-eyed wonder when you come near him. His face lights up as you make eye contact. Your hands begin to wander down his body, and you feel yourself grow more and more excited by the little boy's every move. He is like an irresistible treasure you'd like to explore every way you can, but you've learned that it's better to let the little boys be the explorers, the ones who know what they're looking for and will gladly show you everything they have. They're a little safer than you, anyway. The older you get, the more comfortable you become with the idea of children. Your daughter is about to

This is the danger of feeding your AI with random Internet texts. I can imagine this AI can also be used to generate other kind of ugly texts (racist, etc).

AI brainstorming

By Chromal • Score: 3 • Thread
(When the velociraptors achieved faster-than-light travel, their empire began a period of rapid expansion to the stars.) This time, Velociraptors were able to travel to the distant star Azalea, which was nearly identical to the star known as the Antares, except for one thing: its location in the universe, which is not the same as our own. The Velociraptors settled here and took the name Velociraptor Prime. Over the course of a thousand years, the Velociraptor population grew. The Velociraptors conquered planets across the galaxy, and many of the worlds they conquered became their homes. But in a moment of arrogance, a few Velociraptors lost their lives. For the rest of their lives, the Velociraptor species kept a small piece of Azalea to honor their fallen brethren. (see also: )

Re:Play With It Here

By aardvarkjoe • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

This one is worth sharing:

Two men walk into a bar. One of them is a man named James. The other is James. The bartender is named James. They sit down. The bartender drinks, James laughs. They talk about nothing, about their day and their job.

The bartender walks into James' bar. James says, "Hi. How are you? How are you?" The bartender replies, "I'm good, thanks." James goes away.

The bartender goes into James' bar. James comes in. The bartender says, "How are you?" James says, "I'm fine." The bartender replies, "Yeah. I'm really enjoying myself. You, on the other hand, have been in a lot of trouble."

James goes, "Who told you that?"

The bartender says, "A friend of mine."

James says, "I didn't say anything. You've got to come in and have a drink."

The bartender comes in...

A Ton of People Received Text Messages Overnight That Were Originally Sent on Valentine's Day

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Something strange is happening with text messages in the US right now. Overnight, a multitude of people received text messages that appear to have originally been sent on or around Valentine's Day 2019. From a report: These people never received the text messages in the first place; the people who sent the messages had no idea that they had never been received, and they did nothing to attempt to resend them overnight. Delayed messages were sent from and received by both iPhones and Android phones, and the messages seem to have been sent and received across all major carriers in the US. Many of the complaints involve T-Mobile or Sprint, although AT&T and Verizon have been mentioned as well. People using regional US carriers, carriers in Canada, and even Google Voice also seem to have experienced delays. At fault seems to be a system that multiple cell carriers use for messaging. A Sprint spokesperson said a "maintenance update" last night caused the error.

Oh, that explains it

By 93 Escort Wagon • Score: 3 • Thread

I was wondering about the flurry of "cease & desist" orders which were waiting for me this morning...

Re:Something fishy

By Immerman • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I have definitely sent (and received) text messages that took days to get across, despite other messages with the same person being received promptly.

I suspect it has something to do with the fact that phone networks were never designed to handle text messages - as I recall they're piggybacking on a protocol designed for routine network status messages (hence the size limit) that get sent whenever unused bandwidth is available. As such, there's probably lots of buffers and black holes they can end up in with no-one the wiser - especially now that text messages potentially outnumber the legitimate status messages.

probably gear from Mavenir

By williamyf • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Mavenir is a company with a weird and long history. But for the purposes of TFA and TFF, the relevant bits of technology come from ACISION, and trace their Lineage to Logica (Telepath) and CMG (HPS) SMS systems.

When logica and CMG fused, HPS was delcared the victor, but When HP aounced the discontinuation of VMS, they resurrected the Telepath. You see, the development of CMG's SMSC is close to dark arts, as is based on HPs "Industry Standard OpenVMS" OS and toolchain. Last time I checked, development was done in western europe. But I believe that nowadays, the main one is the telepath, based in HP-UX. Nonetheless, HPS is still mantained.

Those are the biggest SMS systems not comming from a Provider (Nokia, Huawei, et al).

Normaly, an operator assigns a "Lifetime" to an SMS (normal numbers range from 24 to 72 hours, depending on the capacity of your SMSCs, and ussage patterns of your users), the system retries for many days, with longer and longer intervals, after which it gives up. If an SMS is not delivered (say, becuase the owner had the phone of for 3 days), it is discarded and moved to a non-delivered pile. If the SMS goes from one operator to another (say, from T-Mo to Verizon) It goes from one SMSC to the other via CCS7 (SS7 in USoA), further complicating matters....

Probably, non-delivered messages on valentine's day (probably non delivered because excesss load in the Network AND servers) got stuck in limbo, long past their due date, not flagged as undeliverable, not delivered, but not moved to the Discarded repo either.

At some point, this maintenance update took those messages out of limbo, but instead of moving them to the discarded pile, sent them instead.

This is only an educated guess, from a guy who worked 5 years in a telecoms operator, the last three of them as the head of operations of "Value added services", which included SMS. At some point I had 2 Nokia SMSCs, one Telepath and one 3-Node HPS (later upgraded to 5 nodes) .

But again, this is only an (educated) guess. Only time will tell what happeded there.


By squiggleslash • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Us GenXers use SMS. We don't trust these new fangled tools all the Millennials are using, nor do we trust "The Facebook" like our idiot parents.

Hands off my T9 keyboard you heathen!

Re:not that impressive

By dasgoober • Score: 5, Funny • Thread

And the 5 guys on top of her

The July Galileo Outage: What Happened and Why

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
New submitter Myself writes: There's a funny thing about a global satellite system that beams signals down to anyone to use: It also means anyone can monitor the performance thereof. So when such a system suffers a crippling days-long outage and the operators are tight-lipped about why, look no further than Bert Hubert (who you may know from the PowerDNS project) to scramble together a bunch of code and a worldwide network of volunteers, to analyze exactly what happened. This is the story of how and why the Galileo GNSS network was down for a whole week.


By Calydor • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

On the other hand it's pretty amazing it took this many fuckups of this magnitude to actually disable the system.

What do you mean, "when"?

By BAReFO0t • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The fact that it had an outage already implies it worked the entire rest of the time.

Remember that this "series of fuck-ups" extremely likey only happened, because when you work on a staging system, as opposed to a shipped system, whose explicit purpose is to be able to work on it, and you can save work by shutting it down, then that is what you do!

Don't tell me you threat your test installation of the software you write like a stable live version. Because they you missed the point, or are abusing the words and really have an acual testing installation somewhere else.
Anyone who ever had to work an a live system ... be it a high availability electrical power system or a server that half the planet depends on, knows it is a fucking nightmare, an order of magnitude more expensive and time-consuming (if done right), and you want to avoid it nearly any cost. So you have a test system
(And if it is mission-critical, you always have everything thrice. So three simultaneous live systems, three hot spares, and three cold spares, on three sites,using three independent implementations. (Fuck unit tests!) And only on top of that, comes your staging/testing setup. Again in threes of threes.

Re:Leave it to the Europeans

By cwsumner • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Europeans will be the first to point out that they use metric, so no matter what America progresses in technology or science, the Americans are idiots compared to the genius of metric.

Computer software should accept whatever units are used locally, and not care which. Even people developing video games are learning this, comnmercial and industrial should already know it. Although some software in use is so old that it is before that time (and cannot be changed).

That's as basic as numbers having units and error bars, as part of the type!

How Analogous...

By Pyramid • Score: 3 • Thread

It would seem the Galileo system is quite analogous to the EU itself... Fragmented, loaded with bureaucracy, suffering from serious communications issues and generally rife with fiefdoms within fiefdoms.

Yay, I got slashdotted!

By ahu • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

I should really visit /. more often, very happy to have hit the news here! Managed to revive my absolutely ancient /. account too. Thanks for all the visits, and if there are any GPS/Galileo/GLONASS/BeiDou questions, fire away!

Apple Services Censored in China Where Devices Flourished

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
When it comes to many of Apple's latest services, iPhone users in China are missing out. From a report: Podcast choices are paltry. Apple TV+ is off the air. News subscriptions are blocked, and Arcade gaming is nowhere to be found. For years, Apple made huge inroads in the world's most populous nation with hardware that boasted crisp displays, sleek lines and speedy processors. It peddled little of the content that boxed U.S. internet giants Google and Facebook out of the country. But now that Apple is becoming a major digital services provider, it's struggling to avoid the fate of its rivals.

Apple services such as the App Store, digital books, news, video, podcasts and music, put the company in the more precarious position of information provider (or at least overseer), exposing it to a growing online crackdown by China's authoritarian government. While standard iPhone services like iMessage work in China, many paid offerings that help Apple generate recurring revenue from its devices aren't available in the country. That includes four new services that Apple announced this year: TV+ video streaming, the Apple Card, Apple Arcade and the News+ subscription. Other well-known Apple services can't be accessed in the country either, including the iTunes Store, iTunes Movie rentals, Apple Books and the Apple TV and Apple News apps.
Over the past year, Apple's Weather app lost its ability to show air quality index, or AQI, data for Chinese cities -- regardless of the user's location, the report adds. (Though this was due to a business dispute with Weather Channel.)

Re:Vote Democrat Socialist for this future

By hyades1 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The governments of the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Canada, Norway, and Germany are all "socialist".

They're also more free and democratic than yours.

Re:Vote Democrat Socialist for this future

By Ungrounded Lightning • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

The governments of the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Canada, Norway, and Germany are all "socialist".

I don't have personal experience with the others. But say that to a Swede and he may correct you quite vehemently (if he can hold his temper enough not to just punch you out).

As I hear it - oversimplified: They tried socialism. It was a disaster. So they switched back to a more normal market economy and have been undoing the remaining socialist programs since.

Re:Vote Democrat Socialist for this future

By ShanghaiBill • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

The governments of the Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, Canada, Norway, and Germany are all "socialist".

No. None of these countries are socialist.

They're also more free and democratic than yours.

By many measures, they are also more capitalist. It is easier and quicker to start a business in Denmark than in America. A private corporation runs their post office. They also spend less per capita on government-provided healthcare. Yup. America spends more on VA, Medicare, Medicaid, and ACA subsidies, which combined cover about 30% of Americans, than many other countries spend to cover 100% of their citizens.

These countries are "social democracies", but "social democracy" and "democratic socialism" are TWO COMPLETLY DIFFERENT THINGS despite the textual similarity.

Re:Vote Democrat Socialist for this future

By LynnwoodRooster • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Really? They are socialist? At least the Danish are quite vocal about not being socialist, and Norway consistently rejects socialism.

The Nordic Model is "based on the economic foundations of free market capitalism." and "is underpinned by a free market capitalist economic system that features high degrees of private ownership". It's not even CLOSE to socialist - it's full-on capitalist with a Government focused on a social safety net.

Facebook Crypto Boss: 'I Don't Think of Bitcoin as a Currency'

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
David Marcus, the head of Facebook's cryptocurrency projects, says that Bitcoin is digital gold, but it's not a good currency for transactions. From a report: "I don't think of Bitcoin as a currency. It's actually not a great medium of exchange because of its volatility," Marcus said speaking at the New York Times DealBook Conference in New York. "I see it as digital gold." Marcus said Bitcoin is like gold because you can hold on to it as an investment just as people do with actual gold, but the drastic upswings and dips that Bitcoin goes through makes it a bad option for people who need a system to send remittances across borders. That is a key market that Facebook is targeting with its Libra cryptocurrency and Calibra digital wallet. Unlike Bitcoin, Libra's value will be tied to currencies like the U.S. dollar and the Euro, which will help it remain stable. Marcus said a key reason that Bitcoin has not been regulated out of existence is because it is not perceived to be a medium of exchange. "It's an investment class that's decorrelated from the rest of the market," Marcus said. "Why feel threatened by that?"

it is whatever is most expedient

By crgrace • Score: 3 • Thread

The goal of the people who own the most Bitcoin is to monetize it into fiat currencies. To do this they need new bagholders (I mean investors). The starry-eyed, true-believing Moonboys who invest a few bucks from their meagre paychecks are the marks. Most volume is faked (bots wash sales and tape painting) so the only way to get real money out of their vast bitcoin holdings and to support miners is to entice new money into the fold.

Sastohi initially saw it as digital cash (most assuredly a currency). The title of his initial whitepaper included the term "Electronic Cash" for crying out loud. For years it was considered a currency until people realized the throughput for exchange was ludicrously low.

Now it is shilled as a "store of value" even though things that are extremely volatile are piss-poor stores of value.

The idea I'm hearing more commonly lately is that Bitcoin will eventually become the "world reserve currency" because the US Dollar and other fiats will inevitably collapse. The arguments are extremely similar to arguments made in the 1970s by members of the John Birch Society.

This is laughable. Do these folks really think that the Masters of the Universe will participate in the largest wealth transfer in history (and one that will make them poor and random crypto geeks more wealthy than nations)? Not a chance.

It isn't.

By RyanFenton • Score: 3 • Thread

In the same way that a cult isn't a religion - time and numbers. It could fit the role eventually - but I honestly don't think it will.

Why? It's basically got the same issues that company scrip.has.

When you have a small organization outside shared governance creating and formulating a token for the sake of matching the description of a 'currency', who does it for the sake of creating a space for themselves in that exchange and managing said currency.... even with the greatest of intentions, the clever limitations placed on it are going to add a 'shape' to the way it trades.

That 'shape' is to me what makes it unlikely for them to become a general currency. Sure, it's nice for underground markets that want to AVOID general currency - but there's a friction to adaption over time that means its going to either be stuck or subsumed by a better copycat at some point.

Yes - something LIKE a cryptocurrency will become a future currency at some point. Honestly, I don't expect it will really be a cryptocurrency though - just the same techniques used to tokenize the exchange of other resources.

Why? Well, all markets have inefficiencies. their own forms of blindness, and biases in the way that manipulation can be done - and indeed, Bitcoin WAS designed to play around much of these. Most markets try to minimize these things. They're all kind of trading on trust.

Some one's going to connect the dots at some point, and work with a government to make a system of exchange where the ideals of the 'gold standard' (which Bitcoin was trying to tap into), aren't limited to a single token stream - but the tokens are used to represent trust in all the 'hard resources'. Not just in the 'stock exchange' sense, but in the on-the-street hand someone something sense too.

Who knows how stable that will eventually be - but I think that's the kind of thing that will subsume the same role that BitCoin was formed to play. That 'cowrie shell' role of psuedo-finite trade token.

For now though, cash is still king, for being the better portable cowrie shell I can carry without asking permission from a company to do so.

Ryan Fenton

Re:Neither do I of the dollar.

By nitehawk214 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

And I am a better programmer than the farmer, but the farmer is way better at growing food that I could ever be. It is more efficient to do the tasks we are best at.

The farmer doesn't directly need my software, but I do need vegetables.

If only there was some medium of exchange we could agree upon...


By Immerman • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

>Gold at least has an inherent value.
Yeah, but it's price doesn't reflect that at all. Its inherent value is as a conductive corrosion-resistant material, and a soft metal for fine jewelry work without stron tools. It's not worth anything remotely like $1500/oz for that, and it's pretty much worthless for everything else.

Gold's market price is pretty much based entirely on speculation on a relatively useless thing that people for some reason think is valuable. Just like Bitcoin.

Microsoft's $3,500 HoloLens 2 Starts Shipping

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Earlier this year at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Microsoft announced the second generation of its HoloLens augmented reality visor. Today, the $3,500 HoloLens 2 is going on sale in the United States, Japan, China, Germany, Canada, United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Australia and New Zealand, the same countries where it was previously available for pre-order. From a report: Ahead of the launch, I got to spend some time with the latest model, after a brief demo in Barcelona earlier this year. Users will immediately notice the larger field of view, which still doesn't cover your full field of view, but offers a far better experience compared to the first version (where you often felt like you were looking at the virtual objects through a stamp-sized window). The team also greatly enhanced the overall feel of wearing the device. It's not light, at 1.3 pounds, but with the front visor that flips up and the new mounting system that is far more comfortable. In regular use, existing users will also immediately notice the new gestures for opening up the Start menu (this is Windows 10, after all). Instead of a 'bloom' gesture, which often resulted in false positives, you now simply tap on the palm of your hand, where a Microsoft logo now appears when you look at it.

Chronicle, the Google Moonshot Cybersecurity Startup That Was Supposed To Completely Change the Industry, is Imploding

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchierai and Joseph Cox, reporting for Motherboard: In early 2018, Google's parent conglomerate Alphabet announced the birth of a new "independent" startup that was supposed to revolutionize cybersecurity. Chronicle was meant to be a new type of startup. One of its products was designed to structure, organize, and help companies understand their security related data -- a "Google Photos for businesses' network security," as Forbes put it when the company announced its first product this year. The promise was radical: Chronicle would leverage machine learning and Alphabet's near-endless well of security telemetry data about known malware and internet infrastructure and use it to help security teams at companies detect intrusions that could threaten a company's network. Crucially, Chronicle would also remain independent from Google, according to Stephen Gillett, the startup's CEO.

"We want to 10x the speed and impact of security teams' work by making it much easier, faster and more cost-effective for them to capture and analyze security signals that have previously been too difficult and expensive to find," Gillett wrote in a blog post announcing Chronicle. "We know this mission is going to take years, but we're committed to seeing it through." At the time it was unclear what Chronicle was going to be. But industry observers were excited for what they thought was going to be a significant disruptor in an industry that is full of relatively old technologies such as antivirus and firewalls, is rife with products that offer solutions in search of a problem and outright snake oil. "Chronicle is dead," a current employee told Motherboard. "Stephen [Gillett] and Google killed it." Employees have left because of a combination of Chronicle losing its original vision, a distant CEO, a lack of clarity about Chronicle's future, and disappointment that the startup has been swallowed into Google, according to interviews with five current and former employees who were present across different stages of Chronicle's growth.

How Cloudflare Stood up to a Patent Troll -- and Won

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Cloudflare was sued by a notorious patent troll Blackbird Technologies in 2016. Instead of giving up to its demands, Cloudflare employed a different strategy. From a blog post: In October 2016, Blackbird was looking to acquire additional patents for their portfolio when they found an incredibly broad software patent with the ambiguous title, "PROVIDING AN INTERNET THIRD PARTY DATA CHANNEL." They acquired this patent from its owner for $1 plus "other good and valuable consideration." A little later, in March 2017, Blackbird decided to assert that patent against Cloudflare. [...] Companies facing such claims usually convince themselves that settlements in the tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars are quicker and cheaper outcomes than facing years of litigation and millions of dollars in attorneys fees. We decided we would do our best to turn the incentive structure on its head and make patent trolls think twice before attempting to take advantage of the system. We created Project Jengo in an effort to remove this economic asymmetry from the litigation. In our initial blog post we suggested we could level the playing field by: (i) defending ourselves vigorously against the patent lawsuit instead of rolling over and paying a licensing fee or settling, (ii) funding awards for crowdsourced prior art that could be used to invalidate any of Blackbird's patents, not just the one asserted against Cloudflare, and (iii) asking the relevant bar associations to investigate what we considered to be Blackbird's violations of the rules of professional conduct for attorneys.

As promised, we fought the lawsuit vigorously. And as explained in a blog post earlier this year, we won as convincing a victory as one could in federal litigation at both the trial and appellate levels. In early 2018, the District Court for the Northern District of California dismissed the case Blackbird brought against us on subject matter eligibility grounds in response to an Alice motion. In a mere two-page order, Judge Vince Chhabria held that "[a]bstract ideas are not patentable" and Blackbird's assertion of the patent "attempts to monopolize the abstract idea of monitoring a preexisting data stream between a server and a client." Essentially, the case was rejected before it ever really started because the court found Blackbird's patent to be invalid. Blackbird appealed that decision to the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which unceremoniously affirmed the lower court decision dismissing the appeal just three days after the appellate argument was heard. Following this ruling, we celebrated.

As noted in our earlier blog post, although we won the litigation as quickly and easily as possible, the federal litigation process still lasted nearly two years, involved combined legal filings of more than 1,500 pages, and ran up considerable legal expenses. Blackbird's right to seek review of the decision by the US Supreme Court expired this summer, so the case is now officially over. As we've said from the start, we only intended to pursue Project Jengo as long as the case remained active. Even though we won decisively in court, that alone is not enough to change the incentive structure around patent troll suits. Patent trolls are repeat players who don't have significant operations, so the costs of litigation and discovery are much less for them.

Re:Can Cloudflare recoup legal costs from Blackbir

By Solandri • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
The real party at fault here is the USPTO, for granting such a ridiculous patent in the first place. As long as they're immune from the consequences of bad patents, they will continue to grant them.

Re:Too many lawyers

By hashish16 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
As a former Examiner and now someone who works for clients, the problem is Congress. The USPTO makes considerably more revenue than required to fund the USPTO. Congress re-appropriates the excess revenue through out the government. Patent Examiners are not paid enough or given enough time to do thorough, thoughtful examinations. This leads to considerable turn over and under-trained Examiners. Examiners' pay is capped because they cannot make more than Congressmen.

court found Blackbird's patent to be invalid

By g01d4 • Score: 3 • Thread
Sounds like at least as much of an issue with the patent system as with the trolls.

Re:Too many lawyers

By Sigma 7 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

It doesn't matter how common or well known it is in the community or obvious to people in the community-- the patent office knows previous patents exceptionally well, and doesn't know the community practice at all.

That's a slight understatement, as it's better to claim they don't know common sense.

Method of swinging on a swing. It's something a bored child would do, yet the patent was awarded. Perhaps it's a direct conclusion of having the swing in the first place.

Re:Too many lawyers

By Archangel Michael • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

Prisoners fight fires in California for less than a dollar per day, and one day off their sentence for each day spent fighting fires.

Volunteer. They are not required. It is completely optional. The alternative is sit in the cell and no money. Acting like it is "slave labor" isn't accurate at all, and is a complete disservice to the program. But I've come to expect that from people who only listen to their irrational emotions.

Adobe Exec Defends Photoshop for iPad After App Falls Flat

Posted by msmashView on SlashDotShareable Link
Adobe debuted its most important mobile application ever this week when it finally released Photoshop for Apple's iPad. But with key capabilities missing, many within the company's vast fan base have panned the application, prompting the app's overseer to publicly defend his product. From a report: Scott Belsky, chief product officer of Adobe's Creative Cloud division, tweeted about the "painful" early reviews for a product his team has worked on for years. Right now in Apple's App Store, Photoshop for iPad has a user review rating of 2.3 out of 5 stars. Belsky tweeted a screenshot of the metric, saying it made sense that a re-imagination of a popular 30-year-old product would displease many. Bloomberg News reported last month that the beta version of the touchscreen Photoshop app upset testers who missed many of the popular functions they'd grown accustomed to over the years.

"If you try to make everybody happy w/ a v1, you'll either never ship or make nobody happy," Belsky tweeted. "Such feats require customer feedback to truly exceed expectations. You must ship and get fellow passionate travelers on board. But for a team with the right vision and commitment, being doubted and critiqued is motivating and informing." Belsky also responded to users who tweeted about not enjoying Photoshop on Apple's tablet, recommending they try Adobe's drawing app, Fresco. While it's hard, it's important to build products "with customers" rather than "hidden in the lab," he added.

Re:Missing links?

By Freischutz • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Is there supposed to be a link to a story here?

The only story here is that Adobe wanted to charge me a fee off $240 pre paid up front, single payment, for renting Photoshop for a year so I shelled out $50, one time payment, for an Affinity Photo license. Now I'm sure there are smart alecks out there ready to point out I could have paid $0 for a Gimp license and they'd be right. I did try Gimp but I just like Affinity Photo better. I also know that Affinity Photo does not do everything PS does (nor does Gimp) and that if you are a professional photographer, fashion industry professional, game industry graphics designer, etc. neither AP nor Gimp will do everything you need but I'm just an advanced amateur at photo editing. I'm none of these kinds of professional and both AP and Gimp do what I need them to do without the extortionate rent that Adobe charges you.

Re:Missing links?

By cayenne8 • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
If you want full blown Photoshop capability and function on the iPad....look at:

Affinity Photo for iPad

This has been out for like 2-3 years now I think.

I got it when the first 10.5 iPad Pros came out...and was blown away by how powerful it was.

I was surprised that not only did it not choke on doing focus stacking of about 10 full RAW images from a Canon 5D3....but it did a great job of it and in fairly good time, better than some laptops I've seen trying to do the same approximate workload.

I have not had a chance to look at the new PS offering yet, but I have been wondering these past years why PS wasn't even really there on tables when their competitors were way ahead of them. don't have to "rent" the Affinity Products.

Affinity photo on desktop is amazing too....they also have offerings of Designer and Publisher that will give Adobe competent for their Illustrator and InDesign....

Re:Missing links?

By cayenne8 • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

The only story here is that Adobe wanted to charge me a fee off $240 pre paid up front, single payment, for renting Photoshop for a year so I shelled out $50, one time payment, for an Affinity Photo license. Now I'm sure there are smart alecks out there ready to point out I could have paid $0 for a Gimp license and they'd be right. I did try Gimp but I just like Affinity Photo better. I also know that Affinity Photo does not do everything PS does (nor does Gimp) and that if you are a professional photographer, fashion industry professional, game industry graphics designer, etc. neither AP nor Gimp will do everything you need but I'm just an advanced amateur at photo editing. I'm none of these kinds of professional and both AP and Gimp do what I need them to do without the extortionate rent that Adobe charges you.

Well, while Affinity Photo doesn't have every function that PS for click, I would argue it has the same functionality (at least 99%) that PS does and will do readily for professional work.

Since the AP engine was developed from the ground up, in many ways it is faster and more powerful in some areas that PS.

I find that I can use AP to replace PS , and while there are several offerings out there for replacement of Lightroom, I found that On1 RAW is my choice, they have really been innovating and adding serious functionality. Heck you can do layering of RAW images in On1 now....very interesting stuff that opens up.

And best of all...I don't have to pay RENT for my software. I also find that free upgrades are plentiful for these apps.

The Affinity Ones keep upgrading at no cost to me since I've had them.

The ON1 RAW app, I get upgrades during the year, and so far annually they do a major upgrade version that they charge for...BUT, you can decide if/when to upgrade, and it is nice to have that choice.

I like choice.

But I would argue that AP will do everything you need in a normal pro workflow that PS does.

Re:GTE 50%?

By cayenne8 • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

iPads are for consuming, not producing.

I guess you've never worked with a loaded up iPad Pro with a powerful app like Procreate, Affinity Photo or the like.

It is a VERY capable platform for creation.


By unami • Score: 3 • Thread
there are even completed UI-Elements that only prompt: "This feature is not supported on your device yet" - so blaming lack of user-feedback is bullshit. I was expecting a lot more, especially after what they showed to the public 1 1/2 years back. I'm paying for creative cloud anyway, so there's no loss here, and I guess, a lot of the yet-missing features will come eventually.

They clearly underestimated the work they had to do and then probably had a release-date set for 2019 and had to cut all of the features that didn't quite work at that moment. But setting high expectations and then not even having the balls to admit that they couldn't make it is pretty infuriating.

First New HIV Strain In 19 Years Identified

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Scientific American: A research group at the medical devices and health care giant Abbott has discovered a new strain of human immunodeficiency virus, or HIV -- the first to be identified in 19 years. Abbott continues to look for potential new HIV strains to ensure that diagnostic tests for blood screening and detecting infectious diseases remain up to date, says Mary Rodgers, senior author of the paper announcing the finding and head of the company's Global Viral Surveillance Program. The new strain, called HIV-1 group M subtype L, is extremely rare and can be detected by Abbott's current screening system, Rodgers says. The company's tests screen more than 60 percent of the global blood supply, she adds, noting it must detect every strain and "has to be right every time."

The most recent of the three samples used to identify HIV-1 group M subtype L has been sitting in an Abbott freezer since 2001. The amount of virus in the sample was too low to read back then, but new technology recently made it possible. Comparing that sequence with the others made available by the research community, Abbott researchers found two additional examples of the strain -- in samples from 1983 and 1990, also from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, hinting that it has been around for a while. "Now that we know it exists, it'll change how we look for it," Rodgers says. The company's tests focus on the part of the viral genome that does not change very much from generation to generation, which is why it was able to detect the new strain. The finding also suggests there are more strains to be found, Rodgers says. "The full diversity has not been characterized. We're going to continue to look."
The study has been published in the Journal of Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndromes.

Blame TV and Hollywierd

By johnsie • Score: 3 • Thread
TV and movies seem to be glamorising homosexuality. They are making it fashionable for people to be gay. They completely ignore the fact that 1 in 4 gay men in major cities has HIV. It's irresponsible and it's fucking a lot of millennials up.

Re:Blame TV and Hollywierd

By Gilgaron • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
You only have to read the summary to see that this strain is not new, it is merely newly identified due to improved detection techniques, and was isolated from the Congo where HIV is endemic and thusly an unsurprising place to find new strains. Nothing in your post is even slightly relevant to the discovery of this strain, which is at least as old as the 1980s.

Re:Important question not addressed

By Gilgaron • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
I can't say with any authority, but it is still HIV-1, so I'd expect so. The reason this article is interesting is really the new analysis technique, not that it found something particularly concerning.

Re:Blame TV and Hollywierd

By jellomizer • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
As a White Heterosexual Christian Male. Your statement is just Stupid, Evil, and just Wrong.

TV and movies still for the most part haven't been glamorizing homosexuality, however they have been working on showing these people as humans and part of our society, vs the hyper sexual deviants of the previous generation.

They are not making it fashionable to be gay, that statement in itself is just idiotic. Your sexual alignment isn't a choice, and it isn't something that can be changed on a whim. What they are doing is making it so you can live you life without fear over an aspect of yourself that you don't have control.

I am not even going to check the validity of your facts of the HIV frequency. Because it is based on cherry picking a particular small subset of a population. With also the fact that there isn't a census on sexual alignment.

Despite right wing media, HIV isn't a homosexual only illness. Anyone can get it. But the plus side it is preventable. But other aspects of media such as the Straight guys sexual prowess where he is seen having relationships with a lot of women (often the women who is open to additional acts), drug culture.

When a group is ostracized from society, they will often group together for protection from society, and being outside of it, rarely do the really get the benefits from it, so they are in a more dangerous position then someone welcomed in the society. And they are being stressed at a higher rate.

To prevent HIV we cannot achieve it by saying these people are bad. Isolating people from society just makes the problem worse.

Re:Blame TV and Hollywierd

By Cro Magnon • Score: 4, Funny • Thread

Maybe shellfish and pork are outdated, but I'm pretty sure that eating polyester can still kill you.

A Bipartisan Group of Senators Wants To Extend the Space Station To 2030

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
A bipartisan group of senators has filed a new bill that sets out space policy for NASA over the coming decade. "The new authorizing legislation is largely consistent with much of NASA's present activities, but it differs from White House policy in some key respects," reports Ars Technica. "Most notably, the legislation calls for NASA to support the International Space Station through 2030." From the report: The Trump administration has sought to commercialize space stations in low Earth orbit by 2025, perhaps by becoming a customer on a privately operated International Space Station or by supporting the development of smaller, private labs. "By extending the ISS through 2030, this legislation will help grow our already burgeoning space economy, fortifying the United States' leadership in space, increasing American competitiveness around the world, and creating more jobs and opportunity here at home," said Sen. Ted Cruz, a Texas Republican who chairs a subcommittee on space and aviation, in a news release.

Cruz was joined by three other senators in introducing the NASA Authorization Act of 2019: the subcommittee's ranking member, Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), as well as Sens. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), who are chairman and ranking member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, respectively. The new legislation follows the NASA Transition Authorization Act of 2017, which Cruz also led and which President Trump signed into law in March 2017. However, almost immediately after that bill became a law, Cruz characterized it as an interim measure to steady NASA through the presidential transition. The new bill is intended as a more expansive view of space policy, and it encompasses the Trump administration's Artemis Program to land humans on the Moon.

Re:This isn't a legislative problem

By K. S. Kyosuke • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

they may actually just detach all of their modules and reassemble them as their own station.

They absolutely can't. How?

What he forgets is that they end up with a viable station as as result, while the rest of ISS isn't

They absolutely won't.

some of the key bits like life support, etc are in the Russian modules.

And lots of key systems aren't owned by Russians. Hell, even Zarya is not owned by Russians. How would you detach the Russian segment without it?

Re:Things get old. That's why we need the ISS

By brunes69 • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

This is a very good point and one I have not considered, and its amazing fewer people talk about this.

I mean, look at the show The Expanse - this is what a realistic future in space looks like, with old, outdated equipment the normal. We can't just be assuming everything will be brand new every 10 years in space. It's not sustainable. We have to figure out how to maintain aging equipment just as we do here on earth.

Some things are designed for maintenance

By raymorris • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

You can replace the serpentine belt in a car in a few minutes, because the engineers one it would wear out and the designed it to be replaced easily enough. There are handy holes going as deep into the engine as necessary to reach the spark plugs because spark plugs wear out and need to be replaced. If an engine was designed without those holes, so you had to disassemble the entire engine to reach the plugs it would be a very different situation. Some equipment has O-rings which you can slip off and slip on new ones. Other, disposable items instead have rubber seals molded in, so they can't be replaced.

We may be getting to the point where it makes sense to design the next station with serviceable parts. My understanding is that ISS isn't designed that way.

Re:This isn't a legislative problem

By bill_mcgonigle • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

> Falcon Heavy is standing by.

It has the lift capacity but not the volume that's really needed.

Starship will have that capacity but using Starship for lift is silly when a human-rated Starship will be cheaper than the module a cargo Starship would carry.

I posted a hub design a couple years ago in the SpaceX group for linking a dozen or so Starships into a radial (flower-shaped) space station, spinning for some gravity at the outer edges. It seems like a waste of Raptor engines until you compare it with the cost of the alternatives. As a bonus there's plenty of oomph to change orbits and can be refuelled or simply pushed to Mars as needed.

Until then I'd support "keeping the lights on" for ISS and having a good plan to "abandon ship" if an essential part failed. Re-certifying everything for perfect safety is loser-thinking, which s why NASA hss failed for the past 40 years. Risk is inherent in space travel in 2019 and not accepting that risk stretches out timelines for so long that progress is retarded, leading to overall greater risk over time. Don't be in spaceflight if you're driven by fear. Not half a century ago Americans were proud of the brave men who lost their lives as test pilots but nobody expected a Presidential Address and flags at half-staff whenever a mishap occurred. It's dangerous work.

What about....

By rossdee • Score: 3 • Thread

..the Moon ?
Its billions of years older, and must be really worn out.
We should scrap that too.

Vast Dragnet Targets Theft of Biomedical Secrets For China

Posted by BeauHDView on SlashDotShareable Link
schwit1 shares a report from The New York Times: The N.I.H. and the F.B.I. have begun a vast effort to root out scientists who they say are stealing biomedical research for other countries from institutions across the United States. Almost all of the incidents they uncovered and that are under investigation involve scientists of Chinese descent, including naturalized American citizens, allegedly stealing for China. Seventy-one institutions, including many of the most prestigious medical schools in the United States, are now investigating 180 individual cases involving potential theft of intellectual property. The cases began after the N.I.H., prompted by information provided by the F.B.I., sent 18,000 letters last year urging administrators who oversee government grants to be vigilant. So far, the N.I.H. has referred 24 cases in which there may be evidence of criminal activity to the inspector general's office of the Department of Health and Human Services, which may turn over the cases for criminal prosecution.

The investigations have fanned fears that China is exploiting the relative openness of the American scientific system to engage in wholesale economic espionage. At the same time, the scale of the dragnet has sent a tremor through the ranks of biomedical researchers, some of whom say ethnic Chinese scientists are being unfairly targeted for scrutiny as Washington's geopolitical competition with Beijing intensifies. The alleged theft involves not military secrets, but scientific ideas, designs, devices, data and methods that may lead to profitable new treatments or diagnostic tools. Some researchers under investigation have obtained patents in China on work funded by the United States government and owned by American institutions, the N.I.H. said. Others are suspected of setting up labs in China that secretly duplicated American research, according to government officials and university administrators. [...] [R]oughly a dozen scientists are known to have resigned or been fired from universities and research centers across the United States so far. Some have declined to discuss the allegations against them; others have denied any wrongdoing. In several cases, scientists supported by the N.I.H. or other federal agencies are accused of accepting funding from the Chinese government in violation of N.I.H. rules. Some have said that they did not know the arrangements had to be disclosed or were forbidden.

Re:It's time to stop doing any business with China

By cobbaut • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

We need to stop doing any business with China. They just can't seem to play by the rules so we should take our ball and send them home.

What happened to all universities sharing scientific findings with each other ? Is this now considered 'stealing' ??

"You knew I was a scorpion"

By Volatile_Memory • Score: 3, Informative • Thread

China has made no secret of their "16-character policy" formally adopted in 1997 which translates to:

Combine the military and civil
Combine peace and war
Give priority to military products
Let the civil support the military

To do business with them is to expose yourself to espionage and sabotage which is required of Chinese companies by the PRC.

Could be a good thing

By jimbrooking • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread
If the can manufacture life-saving drugs and charge affordable prices, more power to them.

Re:It's time to stop doing any business with China

By SirLanse • Score: 4, Informative • Thread
If I come to your house and you give me a beer, that is Sharing. If I go into your bedroom and take your wife's jewelry, that is Stealing. If you are net yet publishing and want to get your patents in order, and they take the info and patent ahead of you. That is stealing.

Re:This is how it starts.

By TigerPlish • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

No our democracy is far to fragile to start vilifying other peoples again, hell even a crook like Richard Nixon understood this fact.

What you call "vilifying other people" I call "calling them out on their bullshit."

Let's make this very clear: China IS our economic enemy. They want to be #1 and will do whatevs to get there.

Sticking your head in the sand, ignoring it, and calling people who call it out "facists" and worse is counterproductive. You, and those who think like you do, will lead us to a very dark century.