This astonishes me. I've never before heard of an HOA that will pay for your house to be painted, decked, or roofed! All I've ever heard of in connected to these activities is that the HOA will dictate what color you will paint your house and what style your deck and roofing will be.
All the ones I know are the same as what you've seen. The ones in my city even dictate that you have to have clean, well-kept lawns (we live in a desert,) using the particular type of lawn they require (tall-fescue) and all of this is your responsibility to pay for including the tons of water required to keep tall-fescue alive during mandatory water restrictions. They outlawed zero-scape, and have threatened to take houses away from folks who have zero-scaped. I know of no HOA in my area that paints your house or even maintains the roads (the city is responsible for that.)
I live in a non-HOA community, and am very happy that I can put in a yard that looks nice and doesn't require water, but as a result, there are houses on the street which don't look the same as other houses and we do have houses that look like parking lots and trash-heaps (though the city does enforce vehicle and trash abatement codes.)
Which should be a Felony crime. Y'know, cause it's fraud.
Sadly, it is only a crime when we do it. If you have enough money to pay for lobbyists and lawyers, you needn't worry yourself about petty issues.
I suspect if I tried to tell them I was going to pay them up-to $80/mo and remove a bunch of money off in hidden refunds, I'd be looking at some jail time (though likely they'd just drop me as a customer and deal with collections for the owed amount.)
Or even a Cessna or other single or dual engine low altitude aircraft, those things are practically made out of Tupperware now. But the forces on a 747 at 520 mph at FL40 is a little bit more than the forces on a Cessna at 220 mph at 8,000 ft.
I always found it strange that some of the few third parties in which we have an expectation of privacy are library records and postal mail, both essentially run or managed by government.
Actually, there is no expectation of privacy on the metadata collected by the post office. They know where you mailed a letter from and where it is going to, but not the contents (although, you can't really be sure of that.)
Libraries usually are managed at a local level. But I agree with you, they do tend to be an anomaly in all of this.
John had better hope that the poor schmuck he finds on Craigslist doesn't like to do Google searches on and prospective employers
Sadly, there will always be some lawyer stupid and/or greedy enough to fall for this. After all, Scientology still exists despite all the bad press it has (and still uses Craigslist to sucker poor folks looking for help into attending sales pitches for their "religion".) All John has to do is not put his name on it and not mention Prenda, and someone will likely jump at the opportunity.
"The only truly secure system is one that is powered off, cast in a block of concrete and sealed in a lead-lined room with armed guards - and even then I have my doubts." - Gene Spafford, "Computer Recreations: Of Worms, Viruses and Core War" by A. K. Dewdney in Scientific American, March 1989, pp 110. (From Gene Spafford's personal quote list.)
The disconnect in the Sony case is not so much the network, but the network management team who appear to think its cheaper to insure against the loss than prevent the loss.
Only because their management fired the previous network management team because they were too expensive and went with the lowest bidders to replace them. The blame for this really is on the managers of the network management team.
The lax network structure and security is the product of uncritical doublethink in the boardroom.
Bingo. It is also a lack of planning and a dangerous lack of enforced security policy. People were putting vital information in unencrypted text files and running trojan horses sent to them via email, and nobody saw this as a problem despite years of best practices and public education into the dangers of the internet. I suspect there were a lot of people higher up in the organization who thought security policy is that thing that makes it difficult to get your job done, so Sony shouldn't have one, too.
Unlikely that they'll revisit that once they have put out all the fires...
At some point it will become too expensive for them to continue doing this. Sadly, instead of disappearing, I suspect they will just go to their friends in government and have them change the world to make it safer for Sony to live (because that has worked so wonderfully in the past.)
I had no idea I'd doubled the number of comments I made.
You do comment a lot, but I always love the discussions. I wonder where I placed, but sadly, we only see the best of the best on the list. No grade-sheet for the rest of us.
I am ashamed, though that only 7% of my comments got a light bulb. I'll have to work on that.
It isn't easy. I thought I'd made really insightful comments a lot more than I really did. We aren't all Dark Helmet when it comes to funny though... (Not even Dark Helmet is Dark Helmet any more...he's not even on the list.)
I occasionally see an FCC SURVEILLANCE VAN SSID appear in my war-driving logs...
I see a lot more FBI SURVEILLANCE VAN and NSA SURVEILLANCE VAN SSIDs lately, so I think they are more active.
Seriously though, I don't even bring my cantenna with me to the airport any more...the TSA guys get really excited when they see a Pringles can with wires and metal rods in it going through their checkpoints.
No company is perfect but from everything I have read about other providers it looks like Cox is better than most.
And their grades show that. They are pretty much middle of the pack.
I have Cox as well, and have had them for many years (despite moving.) They are slightly better than average. However, I disagree that they give you the speed they advertise. If you are on a local loop with nobody else on it, you get the best speed, but most local loops are saturated and there are times of the day where I am lucky if I can access Netflix or Youtube without buffering (and we're talking SD quality, 2mbps or less.) Part of the problem I've seen is that they have so much junk running on their network that most of the traffic my router sees is stuff that really shouldn't be seen on a network (it is amazing how many Windows machines are directly connected to the network without a firewall or router.)
And the simplest of support issues tends to flabbergast their support folks...I can't count the number of times I've contacted support to tell them that their router is offline, only to have them roll a truck to check my wiring and have the guy they send say, "hmmm, this wiring is working fine, it looks like our router is down." I can see that by going to my modem and accessing the troubleshooting capabilities of the modem. Signal to the head-end is working, but no networking... At one point I was given the phone number of their direct networking support folks so I could call them and have them reboot downed routers, but that number no longer works. And until recently, a call to support usually involved removing my router and plugging in a Windows machine so that the tech support person could determine that traffic to that machine wasn't getting through.
I have no TV from them, but getting them to remove TV from the account was an amazing journey, that you can read about in my previous comments. It took several trips to the customer support center (and multi-hour wait times once there) to get them to finally remove TV from my account. Be happy they aren't charging you for yours...even with basic cable, I was getting charged nearly the same price as the super HD TV costs and couldn't get anyone to successfully remove it until I threatened to drop them entirely.
I'd agree that they are better than average, but in this industry, the average is pretty easy to accomplish.
Microwave oven's running could just as easily "JAM" wifi, but GE isn't being sued for selling jamming devices. This is why ISM exists
WiFi, and other applications that use the ISM band (2.4 gHz) are specifically designed not to be jammed by broken Microwave oven's, and are specifically licensed by the FCC to operate in the ISM band (it is illegal to use a device that is not licensed by the FCC, which is why my cantenna doesn't come out when the FCC is around.)
GE gets away with it partly because they attempt to shield their devices so that they don't inject a lot of interference. All microwave ovens have to have an FCC-issued Equipment Authorization (as does any other device that emits radio noise.) If you took a microwave apart and built a device using the magnatron from the microwave to specifically jam wifi, I suspect the FCC van would be arriving at your house shortly to make life miserable for you.
Was it cellular they blocked, or wifi? The first paragraph says both. I find it hard to believe they would block 911 calls.
From what I've read, they only blocked wifi. There was nothing preventing folks from using USB to tether. The problem with this is that it requires someone to connect a hard-wired network device to a USB connected hotspot and then run the connections via ethernet to the computers they wanted. Wifi is just a hell-of-a-lot easier and more efficient for connecting systems to the internet.
DEFCON does not officially jam wifi during the conference. They jam wifi access points that use the name DefCon (or whatever SSID they are using) to prevent rogue access points. They don't prevent folks from setting up rogue access points, just rogue access points that are obviously rogue. DEFCON attendees may jam wifi, but they aren't doing so in any official capacity.
However, anyone using wifi at DEFCON, or for that matter, any electronic device, should be using a throw-away device that will never be used in any setting other than DEFCON. The old adage goes, turn off anything electronic when entering Las Vegas during DEFCON, and don't turn it back on until you leave.
Rather than an honest but misguided attempt to improve customer service, it seems more likely to me that it's a cynical attempt to look like they're improving customer service without having to spend the money that would be required to actually do it.
Hanlon's Razor and all, I'd be more likely to assume they are trying everything they possibly can to fix their problems so the FCC will allow them to buy TWC, but they are so lost and incapable of actually doing so.
If it's a different vendor, then it's a different program. The Comcast program isn't working very well. Your experience with some other ISP is irrelevant.
True. They are different programs. However, dismissing the fact that other vendors do the same thing with different results is not irrelevant.
What it points to is what Techdirt has called the Cargo Cult mentality on the part of Comcast. Other people are doing this with some success, so Comcast implements it, and then doesn't understand why it is failing because everyone else has implemented it with success.
Sadly, it does work very well, though apparently not for Comcast. My cable vendor (not Comcast) has the same process, though it isn't really a secret. When the technician arrives at your house, after they complete whatever it is that they were sent to do, they automatically give you their business card and tell you to call the number on the business card for up to six months for issues related to whatever they did.
I had a problem once with a device that wasn't working properly. The technician arrived and replaced the device, then a couple weeks later the new device failed. I called the number and he came out the next morning to replace the device and track down why the devices were failing (which turned out to be a ground loop issue in that their cable line was improperly grounded and the device was becoming the ground for everything else attached to the cable.
It was nice being able to call directly to someone who was already aware of the issues without having to re-tell the problem and go through the scripted troubleshooting for a problem that wasn't mine to begin with.