* Posts by Richocet

297 publicly visible posts • joined 24 May 2017

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And then the SEC said, we'll claw back bad bonuses

Richocet

It's good to see this moving forward. I suspect an obstacle to it's success will be all the one-way doors such as family trusts, gifting, buying assets for relatives, Swiss and Cayman island accounts that these weasels can use to make their bonuses non-returnable.

But if that leads to these mechanisms being targeted next, that is a good thing.

The 'possession is 9/10 of the law' rule seems to broadly apply to ill-gotten gains, for example a person can use all of the money fighting in court, so none is left to recover whether in tax, fraud, or damages.

I'm interested to hear what you think about this topic.

Girls Who Code books 'banned' in some US classrooms

Richocet

Re: Politics on mailing lists...

I hope this thread gets lots of suggestions.

Here is a starter:

Australian Taxation Office. Because the wealthiest individuals and many large corporations pay zero tax.

Cloudflare stops services to 'revolting' hate site

Richocet

Re: far right?

Ironically NZ has a great many kiwi farms (the kind where kiwifruit are grown on a large scale)..

Richocet

Only two sides?

Who decided there are only two sides? Life is rarely that simple.

My guess is for the lowest common denominator 2 sides is the most complexity they are willing to engage in.

Software developer cracks Hyundai car security with Google search

Richocet

Re: Good News/Bad News

... worse news: hackers are driving your Hyundai

Richocet

Re: I think we know how this happened!

Google has analytics where you can check how often a term is searched. Not to mention your browser plugins that have access to read the URLs you visit There is definitely some risk in searching for your private key on the internet. It is called private for a reason.

Capital One: Convicted techie got in via 'misconfigured' AWS buckets

Richocet

Re: "Quite an expensive misconfiguration"

So why did the bank use cloud services to run its major business functions?

Either to save money or they felt that it was expected because it was best practice.

If it was to save money, that would explain declining client-side encryption and not paying for the very best security design money could buy.

Cutting costs improves profits, unless something goes wrong and there is an expensive mess to clean up.

IBM ends funding for employee retirement clubs

Richocet

To give you an insight, from when I used to work with such people - the fad at that time was to outdo each other by having more elaborate fountains installed and show off at garden parties. This motivated them to grab money to win these social contests.

Tesla sues former engineer, claims he stole Dojo supercomputer trade secrets

Richocet

That Tesla is claiming that the employee stole something valuable when it might not have been:

1. Stolen - the employee may have already known it before working at Tesla or it might be public knowledge, in which case they are not stealing anything.

2 Worthless - if it is not really IP, or is common knowledge, then it is not valuable.

Richocet

I find it hard to believe that it is viable to design and build a new supercomputer from scratch without purchasing IP or getting the same knowledge by hiring people who have done itbefore.

It sounds like typical Tesla doing something many others have done before and touting it as a great achievement and a breakthrough. This only works for people ignorant of the industries Tesla is works in.

Finally, thermal engineering of electronics is not high-tech. I find it implausible that there is valuable, unique, innovative IP created for Tesla's supercomputer. More likely Tesla doing something and thinking they are groundbreaking when it has already been done before.

Cars in driver-assist mode hit a third of cyclists, all oncoming cars in tests

Richocet

The marketing hype is a huge problem here

Despite being someone who works in marketing, marketing is a huge problem in this. Making people aware of your product and company, and persuading them to buy your product instead of the competitors is fine; but deliberately misleading people, and encouraging misunderstandings that benefit your company such as autopilot is autonomous, is really bad.

I'm also disappointed by encouraging fashions and fads to motivate people to buy more things or buy things they can't afford.

Privacy pathology: It's time for the users to gather a little data – evidence

Richocet

Re: Not so big a deal?

Further note: the process of purchasing advertising keywords is meant to be an auction, so it is concerning in a different way that the price goes up for those keywords just before someone plans to purchase them. Indicating that the pricing mechanism isn't an auction. One person talking about a topic should not be able to influence the auction prices of a billion+ dollar advertising market.

Richocet

Re: My life as an algorithm

Billboards, radio, and TV advertising are incredibly expensive. YouTube, Facebook and Google offer relatively cheaper advertising.

So even if it doesn't work perfectly, it is still attractive to use digital advertising rather than the traditional advertising channels.

Billboards are only targeted to a location, so it is very easy to do better in terms of whom digital advertisements are shown to.

The return on investment for digital advertising has remained higher than traditional advertising, despite the cost of digital advertising increasing a lot over the last decade.

Richocet

Re: Not so big a deal?

The article means the bid price of advertisements for that topic, not the price of items you (as a consumer) could buy related to that topic. What that means is for the companies purchasing advertisements from Amazon , the price goes up. I'm interested to know which platforms are affected by the increased prices.

As a person who works in marketing, this means that if I have a meeting with colleagues to discuss our advertising purchasing strategy, and Alexa is listening, the prices will increases for all the keywords and topics that we discussed bidding on/using. I'm not sure what law that is breaking, but it is the equivalent of insider trading.

The big internet companies need to be careful here. It is risky to bite the hand that feeds them.

Intuit sued over alleged cryptocurrency thefts via Mailchimp intrusion

Richocet

Only a matter of time

My view on cryptocurrency is that it is designed for criminal activities and also that anyone holding cryptocurrency will eventually have it stolen.

Some of the characteristics of the currency such as being decentralised and untraceable, make it the most attractive target of theft ever.

So I don't think anyone who buys crypto or uses it should be protected from theft or fraud of said crypto.

File Explorer fiasco: Window to Microsoft's mixed-up motivations

Richocet

How much worse will the "Your computer has a virus, download the fix here" advertisements be when they are served up in File Explorer?

This is a terrible idea from a greedy and ambitious senior manager.

Web daddy Tim Berners-Lee on privacy, data sharing, and the web's future

Richocet

Re: "bank transactions go to your Solid pod"

It is almost the opposite of what you worry it will be. You won't be forced to create any Pods. If you did, you own the Pod, can host it (or not) and choose who can see into it.

Currently your bank keeps a record of not just your transactions, but a bunch of other data it knows about you, and it sells that information to marketers.

Large organisations have shown a pattern of giving some or all of their data to the NSA. Why would you think a Pod would be less safe from the NSA? It might make collecting the data more work (if they could no longer get it directly from your bank).

Richocet

Re: Optimism.... I'd forgotten what it looks like.

It's smart to be cynical, however Tim is quite experienced and should be able to find a way to make these pods well encrypted.

We have crypto technologies like TOR and crypto currencies that aren't fundamentally broken / hacked.

An issue could be if you grant someone to your information, then they make a copy, steal and keep it. That is what happened with Cambridge Analytica where a University researcher got access to FB data for research, quit, and took the data with him. Maybe Solid pods have a solution for that too.

The other challenge will be identity verification. How do you know the people or company that you grant access to is who they say they are.

The dark equation of harm versus good means blockchain’s had its day

Richocet

We didn't need most of this before marketers made us insecure or otherwise manipulated us into a consumer arms race, at the expense of our planet.

Richocet

Re: The power consumption thing

Well written post. Free range eggs work the same way: Most eggs sold are 'free range' but about 5% of all chicken farms are free range.

Richocet

Re: Lack of comprehension and imagination ...

True.

Extinction is a one-way process. When species die, we will never get them back. Not sure why anyone is fine with this.

The other problems may be unfixable, or take tens of thousands, thousands or hundreds of years to fix. Why is that worth it for the highest quality of life humanity has every seen (our current level in the West)?

When it comes to renting tech kit, things can get personal, very quickly

Richocet

It seems we have some master debaters providing advice in the comments.

BadgerDAO DeFi defunded as hackers apparently nab millions in crypto tokens

Richocet

I worked in the finance industry for 10 years and IT for 20. I would not touch crypto with a bargepole and I kind of understand it. Why do so many people who don't understand how crypto works speculate in it or trust it. Dunning-Kruger effect?

In the '80s, spaceflight sim Elite was nothing short of magic. The annotated source code shows how it was done

Richocet

Oh yes, that cool 3D radar display and the control panel.

Richocet

I don't remember gems being profitable. Maybe I couldn't afford to buy enough to find out.

Richocet

Re: Definitely never ever sat up...

A shame you worked so hard to avoid paying these geniuses who created this game.

I saved up my pocket money for a long time to afford this game. I sure got my money's worth by playing it excessively.

Antitrust battle latest: Google, Facebook 'colluded' to smash Apple's privacy protections

Richocet

Re: So What

A key feature of this is that Google and Facebook colluded on this one (as opposed to Microsoft antitrust cases in the past). This puts them at risk of violating RICO legislation which is potentially much worse for them.

Richocet

Re: I thought they were our friends, who cared about us, the product

I thought they could turn a profit without engaging in racketeering. There is a lot of money to be made in search advertising.

Is the only difference between a large corporation and an organised crime enterprise that one is listed on the stock exchange?

Theranos blood-test machine demos for VIPs rigged to hide any failures, court told

Richocet

Yes, they need to do something about that.

The steal a bunch of money and spend it to the last cent if necessary defending yourself against charges of stealing - routine is far to common.

The person whose money was allegedly stolen has next to no chance of getting any of it back which is unfair.

Richocet

Re: Arrogance of investors?

It never ceases to amaze me about how little the average person knows about how things work, physics, or science. This is why we have investment bubbles. Even people with high to moderate wealth are rarely well-versed in these areas.

Canon makes 'all-in-one' printers that refuse to scan when out of ink, lawsuit claims

Richocet

Re: Standard Industry Malpractice?

Just because every other manufacturer does it, it doesn't make it OK.

Zero-day hunters seek laws to prevent vendors suing them for helping out and doing their jobs

Richocet

This was interesting reading. I looked through the repository of examples too.

Some theories about why this can happen:

1. Individual programmer / low level manager doesn't want to accept any blame so goes on the attack to hush it up.

2. Company has psychopathic senior manager so programmers are terrified of bug reports and do everything they can to hush up reports, such as mislead the company lawyer that illegal hacking has taken place.

3. Company has out of touch (non-technically literate) senior management and in-house lawyer who don't understand that the people finding exploits are providing a valuable service to the company.

4. The company lawyer sees an opportunity to escalate the situation to make additional work for themself = fees.

5. One or more government agencies have compelled or persuaded the company to add these vulnerabilities to their products. When the flaw is discovered, the company doesn't want to fix the issue or have it disclosed.

If anyone read the example of the phone monitoring rootkit, it looks like the product was malware, and it was the only product of that company. So exposing any of the issues about the project was game over for the company. Therefore legal action was the only chance at survival. I class this as a rare special case.

Want to support Firefox? Great, you'll have no problem with personalised, sponsored search suggestions then

Richocet

Re: You pay £60 a month to BT

Not a great analogy, because EDF pass a significant amount of the money that you pay them on to the power generators or 'content providers' if you will.

Richocet

Re: You pay £60 a month to BT

Tim Berners-Lee in my case.

Richocet

Re: Annnd, they got you

Such as voting for a Democrat?

5 years ago I would have viewed my sentence as a joke or a troll, but not now.

Richocet

Re: It's as if they're designing it to lose market share

Short answer: Yes.

Dictionaries in most languages and algorithms to generate misspellings and letter substitution versions of the words.

SSD belonging to Euro-cloud Scaleway was stolen from back of a truck, then turned up on YouTube

Richocet

Re: Is everyone forgetting..

Because your get about 20% more capacity and performance from disks by running them unencrypted?

That adds up over a data center.

Richocet

My friend got a short-term job destroying hard drives for the defense department.

The only tool they gave him was a sledgehammer.

He said it was great for physical fitness.

NSO Group 'will no longer be responding to inquiries' about misuse of its software

Richocet

Re: This is a strawman.

Bezos alibi: I was in space at the time. I couldn't have done it.

The coming of Wi-Fi 6 does not mean it's time to ditch your cabled LAN. Here's why

Richocet

Re: This months of work from home showed too....

As a former telecommunications and power systems electrical engineer - this information seems credible and there doesn't seem to be anything whacky in here.

Just because you don't understand it, doesn't mean it is wrong.

Pull your Western Digital My Book Live NAS off the internet now if you value your files

Richocet

I think I updated WD NAS firmware last month, but I disconnected the device from the network just in case. Yesterday I turned off the internet, plugged my WD NAS back into the network to check the firmware version from a PC. BUT the NAS software requires logging in to a WD account to allow access, and an internet connection is needed to the to log in. Genius design WD!!!

Audacity fork maintainer quits after alleged harassment by 4chan losers who took issue with 'Tenacity' name

Richocet

Appropriate response

While the "shoot them" advice is excessive and unrealistic for Germany (thank you Americans), putting them in a mental asylum is too lenient (if they are guilty).

Going to someone's home and threatening then cutting them with an illegal weapon is a serious offense.

Google cans engineering diversity training scheme after alumni complain of abysmal pay packages

Richocet

Re: I don't think anyone is compensated fairly, maybe except the top

It's more about how much power you have than how smart you are. With the exception perhaps of being able to manipulate people exceptionally well, which isn't something that should attract extra money except in sales, diplomacy and some management positions.

An example would be the son / daughter of the CEO gets a job over the top of better candidates, gets paid well, is exempt from most disciplinary action, and isn't required to work very hard. Most of you would have seen this at some point of your career.

Richocet

Or it shows that the problems of lower pay and opportunities for minorities are part of Google culture, and even through this program got more people in the door who were not given opportunities through the traditional hiring process, these issues kicked in later.

Or it shows that such an opportunity is not enough to catch up with people who faced less obstacles.

There is not enough information provided about what proportion of people on the program didn't do well after the program, and we don't know the parameters of the quality of the people in the program. It would likely be be a bell curve with some talented people, some people who shouldn't have made it into the program in the first place, and most in between.

Now that China has all but banned cryptocurrencies, GPU prices are falling like Bitcoin

Richocet

Why has nobody mentioned that cryptocurrencies are a blessing for organized crime.

Untraceable, easily transportable. Can be used to launder money, transfer money cross borders, pay for contract killings, drug shipments, kiddie porn, arms dealing terrorism.

Is this not a bigger deal than whether a government can control a currency, the electricity* used to mine it, and how stable an investment it is?

Makes me think people on this forum can't see the wood for the trees.

I'm genuinely interested in your thoughts on this. Didn't realise? Don't care?

*Maybe the electricity=carbon issue is the most important in the long term.

Ex-Brave staffer launches GDPR sueball in Germany over tech giants' real-time bidding for ad inventory

Richocet

Previous approach

Contextual advertising was used before the technology was in place for personalised ad targeting which is now standard practice.

So contextual advertising is not so much an alternative, but turning back the clock.

Advertisers somewhere will know if contextual performs as well as personalised.

One key difference between the two is the vast array of agencies, brokers and businesses earning revenur from selling, implementing, and supporting personalised advertising because it is much more complex and at least one order of magnitude more effort. This will likely impact the industry's enthusiasm for changing.

FBI paid renegade developer $180k for backdoored AN0M chat app that brought down drug underworld

Richocet

Re: A job well done

The uncertainty fear, and paranoia would cause the crims to explore a number of theories about why they keep getting busted. They wouldn't trust each other and it would really slow down their activities. So I don't know why it was revealed how they did it, unless there is another goal by doing so.

Richocet

Re: Mystery dev

If that information about his history is accurate.

You got a smart speaker but you're worried about privacy. First off, why'd you buy one? Secondly, check out Project Alias

Richocet

Re: you could simply not put the creepy things in your home

Dragon naturally speaking has been around for more than a decade and does exactly that. Listens to your voice and turns it into text accurately.

Naunce, the company that developed this product has since made big money selling this technology to Google etc to run their speech recognition and digital assistants on large scale servers.

I find it suspicious that speech recognition isn't implemented on the devices with some specialised hardware and send the transcript to servers. Plus it is unnecessary use of your internet connection to basically stream audio to a server. There must be a whole lot more valuable data that can be obtained by anaylsing the raw audio.

PrivacyMic looks to keep your home smart without Google, Alexa, Siri and pals listening in

Richocet

So what exactly is the benefit to the purchaser of these devices? Why would you buy a device to listen to ultrasound in your home and send it yet-to-be-identified companies that would want to purchase that data.?

You can't solve your insecurities about not keeping up with technology by showing off the device to your friends.

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