* Posts by elDog

1002 posts • joined 23 Oct 2013

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Canadian province's supreme court orders Dell to pay nearly $500,000 to sales rep fired in his twilight years

elDog

Oh dear. Now Dell will need to raise its prices again to pay for this settlement...

Not shave a tiny bit off of Michael Dell's very generous packages.

Sounds like a typical Oracle or IBM stunt - shaft the workers before they can collect their due rewards.

FTC approves $61.7m settlement with Amazon for pocketing driver tips

elDog

Re: Tip fuckery

Actually, this seems to be a normal practice. When the bill is initially put through via a charge card, it only shows the amount of the meal (plus tax/etc.). If a tip is added, that *should* show up later in the actual bank charges. At least, that is my experience in the USofA.

US nuclear weapon bunker security secrets spill from online flashcards since 2013

elDog

Staffing these sensitive sites with young people is also an invitation for fun

Bellingcat link: https://www.bellingcat.com/news/2021/05/28/us-soldiers-expose-nuclear-weapons-secrets-via-flashcard-apps/

Those young men (and some women) enjoy social media more than most.

Bellingcat has taken good advantage of the carelessness of military and intelligence personnel as well as using openly available databases of private information.

Something went wrong but we won't tell you what it is. Now, would you like to take out a premium subscription?

elDog

And then, to complete the idiocy of that language's error handling:

GO TO 0

University duo thought it would be cool to sneak bad code into Linux as an experiment. Of course, it absolutely backfired

elDog

And so what? CCP, USSR, Israel, 400# oaf in his mother's basement

All of the subjects in the subject line know how to get around domain-name and IP restrictions. That's a pretty bad way to enforce security of the jewels.

Many researchers have run afoul of authorities when they probed some product. Witness Randall Schwartz who exposed security vulnerabilities at Intel and was prosecuted.

It's the corporate PHB who are the most dangerous to security. They want profits over competence.

Ex IBM sales manager, fired after battling discrimination against subordinates, wins $11m lawsuit

elDog

IBM, Oracle, SAP - same eyes on the short-term bottom line for the stock market

As long as the C-suite benefits don't get impacted, screw the little people.

Just like those other dinosaurs who couldn't adjust to a mere meteor strike.

Or the current group of climate deniers who won't change their policies to try to keep the planet alive.

Facebook says dump of 533m accounts is old news. But my date of birth, name, etc haven't changed in years, Zuck

elDog

Re: Time for the usual security advice

Yes, I change my birthdate one every 1.736 months - purely random but tends towards a more recent one.

I also use someone else's SSN (in the US). My name is Totally Fungible with access controls limited to Anonymous.

Phone #s are drawn from the republican party congress things.

It's a real devil logging into the Zuck-boy's FookBase but that keeps me away from his PHP minions.

1Password has none, KeePass has none... So why are there seven embedded trackers in the LastPass Android app?

elDog

KeyPass as an alternative? Are you sure you didn't mean KeePass?

There was a product many years ago that was called KeyPass. Don't think it is still alive.

KeePass is open source, well maintained, has versions that run on all major platforms (well, perhaps not CPM-80).

The wastepaper basket is on the other side of the office – that must be why they put all these slots in the computer

elDog

Medicine cabinets in the US had, for a long time, slots to dispose of used razor blades

Many a home remodeler had to know (or find out) that working in the bathroom between the studs could be hazardous.

Troubling news for JSON tinkerers? Windows Terminal unveils The Settings

elDog

I sense a sea change at MS. And I'm not sure it is all swells from here on....

Their support of more open languages, environments, even OS's is wonderful. As their flagship commercial products (Office) move into the cloud, perhaps the ancillary support pieces can not be treated as money makers.

Still, I worry about honey pots. Embrace, extend, ...

Perl-clutching hijackers appear to have seized control of 33-year-old programming language's .com domain

elDog

I remember when "whitehouse.com" was nicely changed to a pr0n site

Definitely a lot easier on this guys eyes than the old White House web pages from back in the naughty nineties.

Do new domain owners now need to spring for every conceivable TLD combination of their moniker? Way back then I grabbed .com, .net, and .org just to be safe. Now there must be several hundreds. Good business for them that sell that stuff.

Trump silenced online: Facebook, Twitter etc balk at insurrection, shut the door after horse bolts and nearly burns down the stable

elDog

They are only doing this since the Democrats will be in power in two weeks.

After 4+ years of encouraging their platforms to be used to foment violence and dissent across the world, the social media giants have decided to "act" responsible.

How convenient.

JetBrains' build automation software eyed as possible enabler of SolarWinds hack

elDog

Re: A loing time ago, in this unfashionable end of the Galaxy...

Thanks for that reference to a Ken Thompson paper: Reflections on Trusting Trust.

You there. Person, corp, state. Doesn't matter. You better not shoot down or hack a drone. That's our job – US govt

elDog

So when the American rapacious symbol (the eagle) takes down a drone operated by some nebulous group

it can be sued or put in an ICE cage?

What if the CIA takes down a drone operated by the FBI or TeaParty?

This should be fun to watch, from a distance.

Anti-5G-vaxx pressure group sues Zuckerberg, Facebook, fact checkers for daring to suggest it might be wrong

elDog

Re: Tossing their toys about

Seems the motive is to pollute the airwaves. To inundate any sentient beings with crapola.

Random/malicious bits on the internets are essentially free and may cause some desired effects. Various state-run agencies are more cunning, more targeted.

'I think the police are here...' Feds reveal Skype, text chats of Canadian trio charged with $8m crypto-coin fraud

elDog

Sounds like these scoundrels could make many $$$ by selling the movie rights

We (the public) seem to be enamored of how con artists can rip off us (the public.)

I was going to go all political and talk about trump and johnson here, but I've been down-voted too many times for that.

IDE like an update, please: JetBrains freshens IntelliJ, adds improved GitHub integration, Java support

elDog

I'd like to throw in a kudo for JetBrain's database IDE - DataGrip

I've used DataGrip on 3, perhaps 4, RDBMS and it has been a delight. Very performant and understands the various flavors of back-end technologies.

I find myself switching between the PyCharm, DataGrip, and other JB interfaces to be very logical.

Also the purchase of the full suite of tools seems reasonable, especially after the first year when the renewal prices decrease.

Microsoft accused of sharing data of Office 365 business subscribers with Facebook and its app devs

elDog

Please keep this story updated and on the front page, if accurate.

This is huge. Not unexpected from the corporate world run amok.

FYI Russia is totally hacking the West's labs in search of COVID-19 vaccine files, say UK, US, Canada cyber-spies

elDog

This is just a diversion. They (USSR/FSB/KGB) get their real feeds from BJ and DJT

They spent their money and effort well. Now for the rewards.

I'm guessing the western intelligence organizations have been pretty well castrated also.

Disgraced lobbyist Jack Abramoff pleads guilty again after cryptocurrency flop broke laws set up to stop him

elDog

Abramoff - the trenchcoat guy. Part of the Delay, Gingrich, Norquist mob

Perfect for a pardon and a high-level cabinet position in trump's mafia.

Database maestro Antirez says arrivederci to Redis: Seems he wants an unstructured life writing code, not a structured one managing software

elDog

antirez's comment referenced in the article is so good - a must read

It is a well-spoken personal statement that doesn't try to coerce anyone to follow his viewpoints.

http://antirez.com/news/122

I wish Salvatore Sanfilippo the best of luck and look forward to his creativity in the future.

Talk about the fox guarding the hen house. Comcast to handle DNS-over-HTTPS for Firefox-using subscribers

elDog

So will Tor be using Comcast for DNS? Will my VPN also start going through my ISP?

It's like musical chairs. Trying to figure out which browser you trust, and then which ISP and which DNS provider.

I'll just use whatever Jared uses. It must be secure and have multiple exit points in Moscow and St. Petersburg. With some undisclosed hops to Israel and China. Damn, my latency is really g.r..o...w...i.....n.....

Belief in 5G conspiracy theories goes hand-in-hand with small explosions of rage, paranoia and violence, researchers claim

elDog

And I'm not being conspiratorial when I think state actors are fomenting conspiracies around 5G

I'm being totally reasonable and lucid. In fact I may be the brightest critter in the stable.

Given how adept various governments (including and excluding 5-Eyes) are at manipulating opinions via social media, it seems logical that there are some big players out there trying to gum up the works.

Oh, and tin is not a good shield against the 5G spectrum. Definitely cover your head with 2mm copper shielding. A spike on the top helps drive away the signals. Taking a walk in a thunderstorm should clear all those internal screaming demons out once and for all.

Hey NYPD, when you're done tear-gassing and running over protesters, can you tell us about your spy gear?

elDog

Oh, good. Another case of having an agency (NYPD) police its own actions.

Well, they are using an Inspector General within the department. And we all know how independent these IGs are.

Blasio just needs to follow the dope-in-chief (rump) example and replace the IG with a crony or someone who understands the code of Omertà..

Facebook's cool with sharing the President's nonsense on its mega-platform – but don't you dare mention 'unionize' in its Workplace app

elDog

Is Zuck angling for a US VP job? He's got the billions and lots of experience

in how to manipulate people. Neither of which trump seems to have had.

Given cheez-whiz (stable genius) gluttonous diet and bunker-mentality, perhaps zuck could be anointed in a few months. Not sure which patsy-pasty-faced ahole I'd rather have as leader of the "once free" world: pence, zuck, jared.

I'm glad there are really infinite universes. Could someone give me a key to another where trump and johnson didn't win? (I know, I might like it either.)

From off-prem to just off: IBM Cloud goes down planet-wide so hard even the status page didn't work

elDog

Wunderground (weather site) "An IBM Business" is also down

I guess I'll have to look out my window or take a stroll. Bloody inconvenience.

June's Patch Tuesday reveals 23 ways to remotely pwn Windows – and over 100 more bugs that could ruin your day

elDog

Isn't the title the inverse? "23 ways to STOP remotely pwn Windows..."

I think these patches are meant to correct flaws in all these systems/applications rather than introduce new ones.

However, given the players, I could be mistaken.

US senators call for more transparency over $12bn TSMC fab plant investment

elDog

If there's real money to be made, don't expect real transparency

The old-fashioned idea of accountability, auditing, and "the people's interest" have long since fled the stable, genius. The US government has been weeviled out by evil incompetents as has the senate and much of the federal court system.

I expect the crime family's coffers to be brimming with newly minted greenbacks from places like SA, UAE, USSR, let alone Taiwan.

Nine in ten biz applications harbor out-of-date, unsupported, insecure open-source code, study shows

elDog

To be fair, many company's services use unsupported and/or un-updated commercial packages?

Not saying that this article doesn't point out a valid concern.

Just that many in-house services and some commercial products bundle third-party closed-source programs into their works.

Many a time I've worked on an old application that used Access/ODBC for its 'back-end'. Or SQL Server and other DB libraries. To say nothing about Adobe's plethora of leaky products (ColdFusion, Flash), Microsoft's .NET libraries, various other networking interfaces.

'Non-commercial use only'? Oopsie. You can't get much more commercial than a huge digital billboard over Piccadilly

elDog

I hope that the bloke running the screen finalley clicked the "Like" button when closing TeamViewer

In my hundreds (thousands?) of times of using TeamViewer (personal use only, natch) I've been asked at the end to show my thanks by clicking "Like" when closing. Not sure what would happen if I happened to do so.

ICANN delays .org sell off after California's attorney general intervenes at last minute, tears non-profit a new one over sale

elDog

Wouldn't surprise me to find some entities involved in this sale that are somehow connected to

the mobsters that are trying to turn the US into a private enterprise. Casinos and real-estate for money-laundering. Might as well try to get into the innertubes business.

We lost another good one: Mathematician John Conway loses Game of Life, taken by coronavirus at 82

elDog

Paul Davies in "The Demon in the Machine" has a wonderful description of Conway and the Game of Life

with application to genetics non-genetic evolution.

He talks about cellular automata and the "Game of Life". I know you and I were fascinated by Conroy's ideas. I thought, "well, why not have a game of life using non-square repeating patterns. Many others have thought that and taken it into vast realms - including Penrose fields.

https://codegolf.stackexchange.com/questions/35827/implement-the-game-of-life-on-anything-but-a-regular-grid

https://www.newscientist.com/article/dn22134-first-gliders-navigate-ever-changing-penrose-universe/

Davies talks a lot about the demon involved in the molecular biology of the cell. I just saw this today and it dovetails nicely with his exposition.

https://www.ted.com/talks/janet_iwasa_the_wonders_of_the_molecular_world_animated

Suspicious senate stock sale spurt spurs scrutiny scheme: This website tracks which shares US senators are unloading mid-pandemic

elDog

How long before his site is DoS'd or forced to be taken down?

The poor little senators must feel exposed. So now they'll probably use go-betweens to do their trades, at least the ones who aren't already trading that way.

Reach for the sky: Pixar founders win Turing Award for pioneering 3D animation – and getting rid of jagged edges

elDog

I'd like to see some mentions of others that built up the NYIT lab and worked at Pixar

https://www.cs.cmu.edu/~ph/nyit/masson/nyit.html

A good fried, Lance Williams (who died way too soon):

New York Institute of Technology (NYIT)

In 1974 Dr. Alexander Schure, a wealthy entrepreneur, began to assemble the Computer Graphics Laboratory (CGL) at the New York Institute of Technology. His vision was to create a feature length animated film, with the aid of the days most sophisticated computer graphics techniques. NYIT itself was founded by Dr. Schure, had grounds encompassing numerous estates situated in the beautiful wooded hillsides of Old Westbury New York. Some of these estates were owned by members of the Rockafeller family, who also happened to have a seat on the board of Evans & Sutherland. Because of the close association of E&S with the University of Utah, Dave Evans recommended to Alex to seek out Edwin Catmull to head the new CGL. Ed Catmull had just finished his Ph.D. at Utah and taken a job at a CAD/CAM company called Applicon. It was not a hard sell to get Ed to leave Applicon for NYIT however, so he and fellow Utah graduate Malcolm Blanchard packed their bags for New York. Alvy Ray Smith and David DiFrancesco (both fresh from Xerox PARC) joined the team a few months later in what was called the 3Gerry Mansion2. Alvy and David had heard of Dr. Schure9s plans from Martin Newell at Utah (whom Alex had just hired briefly as a consultant). Dr. Schure had recently come through Utah and literally ordered 3one of everything2 to jump start his NYIT project. Some of this equipment included a DEC PDP-11, a new E&S LDS-1 and the first random access frame buffer also from E&S. Later, the CGL group would also receive the very first commercial VAX.

[SIDEBAR] VAX ALMOST SMASHED! In fact, the VAX almost never made it inside the building, if not for Alvy Ray Smith9s quick actions. It seems that when the computer was just lowered off the back of the delivery truck, another truck parked behind and uphill had it9s brakes slip, which started it rolling towards the brand new machine. Alvy quickly jumped in the driver-less truck and stopped it just before it could smash the VAX back into the very truck it was just unloaded from.

The CGL quickly attracted other technology experts and artists, including Christy Barton(from E&S), Tom Duff, Lance Williams, Fred Parke, Garland Stern, Ralph Guggenheim, Ed Emshwiller, and many others. Throughout the 1970s, the people of the CGL thrived in a pioneering spirit, creating milestones in many areas of graphic software. Many of the 3firsts2 that happened at NYIT were based on the development of the first RGB full color (24bit) raster graphics.

A few of the more notable 3firsts2: First RGB anything (because they had the first RGB framebuffers in the world). First RGB paint program (Paint by Alvy Ray Smith). First soft-edged fill (Alvy Ray again). First computer-controlled video editing. First TV commercial with raster graphics (Lance, I think, or maybe it was Ephraim Cohen). First pixel dissolve. First networked computer system (Christy rolled our own for us). The alpha channel is invented by Ed Catmull and Alvy Ray Smith. First hidden surface algorithm within a pixel (Ed). Lance Williams invented mipmapping (texture mapping is still done this way today). Garland Stern implemented the first scan and paint system (this is how the Disney/Pixar CAPS system now makes 2D animation - different system but same idea).

The atmosphere at the CGL was also very open, with many invited tours coming through the lab all year-round. Other universities like Cornell, and companies such as Quantel were among those to visit and take notes about what was being developed. The personnel structure was virtually non- existent, with never any heavy handed management from Dr. Catmull. People did what they were best at and helped each other out whenever needed.

[Strangest Job Title ever!] Alvy Ray Smith would later accidently come across an organization chart for the lab put together by Dr. Shure. Ed Catmull was running the lab of course but there where people listed above and below him that no one had even heard of. Alvy was particularly amused to find that his official title was 3Information Quanta2. A term very much in keeping with Dr. Shure9s somewht unique, and non-standard form of communicating.

Ed Catmull9s Tween, Alvy Ray Smith9s Paint program, and the 2D animation program SoftCel, all were in keeping with the original charter of the CGL, which was 2D CG. There were also many breakthroughs in image techniques involving fractals, morphing, image compositing, and Mip-Map texture mapping and many others. Key to this pioneering effort was the seemingly unlimited financing evidenced by Alex Schure. One such example took place when Alvy Ray Smith spoke with Alex about how good it might be to have not just the one, but three frame buffers. This way, Alvy explained, the three 8bit buffers could be combined to create the first RGB color frame buffer ever! Sometime later Alex not only delivered the two additional frame buffers, but an additional 3, which gave the CGL team a grand total of 6. (3Enough for two of those RGB things2 said Alex.) At $60,000 each (plus the $80,000 for the first) what this meant in today9s dollars was that on a simple request, Alex had just delivered about $2million worth of equipment. More Utah people joined the CGL, including Garland Stern who would write the vector animation system BBOP. David DiFrancesco would also begin what would be turn out to be a long association with film recording at this time. Jim Blinn even worked at the CGL as a summer intern in 1976.

There's gold in your biz's processes and mining them is the future, says bloke behind topic's first practical guide

elDog

Re: "[using] analytics and AI on application log data"

@ Allan George - I hope you were kidding.

A worksheet to log what's in the other worksheets. And another sheet to log the logging.

Shite. I can't even get a decent audit report out of century-old spreadsheets littered with formulae and VBA and thousands of user-crufted changes that break everything else. I think there's a London Whale of a story in there, somewhere.

Alleged Vault 7 leaker trial finale: Want to know the CIA's password for its top-secret hacking tools? 123ABCdef

elDog

Recommend a series of in-depth articles about this on emptywheel.

Lots of rat-fuckery going on. Some political, some spy-craft.

Great article, BTW.

When the air gap is the space between the ears: A natural gas plant let ransomware spread from office IT to ops

elDog

For this to be announced as a CISA bulletin implies some importance

since it gives visibility to these types of vulnerabilities.

Generally humans-being-humans, if there is a way to bridge the air-gap to make their lives more pleasurable/efficient/whatever, the humans will do so. I've seen many examples from within TS SCIF facilities and other environments.

One also wonders how many of these incidents are not being publicized. We know banks/etc. don't like to publish the fact that their security is lax and has been breached. Same for industrial/corporations/governments.

Another week, another bunch of Windows 10 machines punched by a patch

elDog

Re: @elDog - Anybody else tired of having their Windows 10 system

Appreciate your suggestion. Too frequently a total reboot (shutdown) is necessary in the World Of Windows (WOW).

My SOP is to get 20-50 apps running in windows on 2-4 monitors. I really don't want to restart each of these apps and reposition them since MS is incapable of updating the OS bits without requiring a full reboot.

For those of you that open your lappie and run 2-3 programs in a session, a reboot might be OK.

elDog

Anybody else tired of having their Windows 10 system wake up in the middle of the night for updates?

This has become ridiculous. I'll put my box to sleep and turn out the lights for some well-deserved sleep and then be startled awake at any hour of the night/early morning by screen flashing on. The fan starts whirring and the disk lights are all blinking like it's a party. Ahhh. MS has decided that it knows better than me how to run MY machine.

In the olden days you could prevent updates or defer them. That ability was curtailed.

Then you could go through a bunch of hoops and disable something called the UpdateOrchestrator. No longer.

I'll give WuMgr a try now.

I know, Linux....

Ever had a script you just can't scratch? Excel on the web now has just the thing

elDog

As always, the big problem with Excel / VBA / formulas is the lack of transparency and auditability

Echoing PBL's comment above, using an external set of scripts to drive the spreadsheet is much more performant, allows all sorts of technologies that are just bolt-ons to Excel, and are capable of being audited. For me storing scripts in a git/svn repository and seeing the version differences is immensely important.

Spreadsheets should just be a display tool, not a full ETL suite.

elDog

Yeah. And O361 was even worse. Actually, I rather like O365

for most viewing, limited sorting/filtering.

I think it rather amazing that Microsoft after all of its foot-dragging and nay-saying has finally been able to make some decent web apps. Balmer must be writhing on his yacht.

Super-leaker Snowden punts free PDF* of tell-all NSA book with censored parts about China restored, underlined

elDog

Based on the last para it sounds like we should stop complaining, assume the sheeple position

"In recent years, Western countries have begun taking steps towards deploying Chinese-style mass surveillance, perhaps having been inspired, rather than discouraged, by Snowden's actions. ®"

If we become whistle-blowers, or even people of conscience, then the "authorities" will use our personal freedoms as a indication that they should become more authoritarian. Typical way the weak governments terrorise their populations.

UN didn't patch SharePoint, got mega-hacked, covered it up, kept most staff in the dark, finally forced to admit it

elDog

Legislations not a bad long-term, but it doesn't help when the jewels have already been heisted

And legislators are painfully stupid. And lobbyists are horribly efficient at writing legislation.

The crims will always be ahead of the cops. If you have jewels, take care of them yourself.

Remember the Clipper chip? NSA's botched backdoor-for-Feds from 1993 still influences today's encryption debates

elDog

Re: Perhaps Not Actually About Security...

It's also about telling the little people (us) that the gummint is serious about security, while being totally willing to subvert it for their own porpoises.

IT exec sets up fake biz, uses it to bill his bosses $6m for phantom gear, gets caught by Microsoft Word metadata

elDog

Good to stay "anonymous"

The tips are good - mainly how NOT to do this stuff.

Anyone know of a good book (whoops, online resource) that give me furthur tips?

When is an electrical engineer not an engineer? When Arizona's state regulators decide to play word games

elDog

As this article mentions, up to 98% of people with "engineer" in their titles

don't actually drive any locomotives.

Whoops - it was 80% don't have one of those pieces of paper from the self-regulated Engineers In Search of Engineering Jobs (ESEJ).

In 50+ years many of my contracts have had titles that included "Architect" or "Engineer". I have yet to have a building or train crash because of my lack of certain pieces of paper.

Battery-guzzling 4K hardware clad in an alloy battle jacket: Lenovo's 4th-gen ThinkPad Yoga X1 is its most metal yet

elDog

My first gen Yoga 900 131SK has the same screen/disk/memory and lasts for 12-15 hours

It has only a 13" screen rather than the 14" but I can't understand why this new model is significantly heavier and has less battery life.

After a couple of years I replaced Windows with Linux (Mint) and the power consumption has dropped considerably. Most of the 2-1 features work also with tweaking.

Trump Administration fast-tracks compulsory border facial recognition scans for all US citizens

elDog

Only reason to "fast-track" is because there's $$$s to be made

and the peeResident of the US needs more. And the MIC is happy to oblige.

Internet world despairs as non-profit .org sold for $$$$ to private equity firm, price caps axed

elDog

Re: Fork, anyone?

I hear some outfit in St. Petersburg (RU) or another in Beijing and probably a lot more in places like Israel, North Korea have very good registration systems.

Anyone remember the days when the yanks could be mainly trusted (80%)? You knew they were gathering packet information but it was collegial. Now they are trusted about 1%. So bad that even their oranganus peeResident uses foreign communications equipment.

Google brings its secret health data stockpiling systems to the US

elDog

So all that crap about HIPAA is being scuttled by google's bucks

I've spent a good bit of my life worrying about patient privacy and consent - opt-in/out, etc.

While I knew that hospitals and insurance companies and pharma and laboratories and couriers and every medical practice already had access to my vitals, I never expected that paradigm of "First, Do No Evil" would suck it all in.

Get over it. We don't have any privacy.

Says I, signing in via google.

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