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  • Sep 25th, 2016 @ 7:36am

    Re: Re:

    Unfortunately, no. I've seen it discussed in the past, and I believe there were links involved, but I didn't keep any of them.

    I can't speak for other people, of course, but the reason I'm not entirely comfortable with the practice is that - so far as I understand matters - there's currently no way for the provider to determine which packets to handle in which way except by inspecting the contents of the packets, so this can't currently be done without violating the neutrality principles at least in concept.

    (I can't swear there isn't a way to do it without that, even currently much less in "someone could design one" nebulous form, but I don't know of any.)

    That said, some providers actually do do this, right now - or at least they claimed to, when I last saw the matter being discussed. I don't have any references for that either just offhand, however.

  • Sep 24th, 2016 @ 3:34pm

    (untitled comment)

    Zero rating an internal service (because it's sourced inside their own network) doesn't violate the rules of net neutrality.

    The source of the data doesn't matter; "inside the network" is still on the network, and the network needs to treat all data passing over it neutrally, regardless of where that data comes from or where it is going.

    As soon as your network equipment starts paying attention to things like where the data came from originally, or where the data's ultimate destination is - much less what the actual content of the data is - beyond the bare minimum needed to perform proper routing, you are violating the principle that the network should be (content-, provider-, and recipient-)neutral.

    Now, that's an approximation of the absolutist version; in practice, there can be some degree of flexibility to allow for traffic shaping, so that e.g. data which needs fast response (e.g. realtime communication) can be given lower ping times at the expense of also getting lower throughput. That's the absolute farthest that it can go, however, and even that needs to be based on explicit user request for this particular traffic to be handled differently; ideally this would be done by something like an optional label, which the network is explicitly permitted to look at if it is present.

  • Sep 23rd, 2016 @ 9:11am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Idiot

    Math is not numbers.

    Math is the manipulation of numbers.

  • Sep 23rd, 2016 @ 8:40am

    Re: Whom to blame...

    That would seem to suggest that the actual objection here is that Lenovo does not provide a configuration toggle for whether or not the storage controller should be in RAID mode.

    My experience seems to indicate that this sort of toggle is a nearly universal feature for every system that supports a hardware RAID mode within the past several years, if not the past decade or more. The decision to omit it is one worth questioning.

  • Sep 22nd, 2016 @ 4:40am


    Slight correction: the purpose of copyright is to increase the amount of content available to the public, not merely the amount of content created. That is, it's supposed to be an incentive not merely to create content, but to release it - to publish a book, rather than e.g. leaving the only copy of your manuscript in a box in the attic to be destroyed by water damage from a roof leak ten years after you die.

    Everything else you mentioned is correct.

  • Sep 21st, 2016 @ 9:10am

    Re: fair play

    Because an FBI agent has authority backed by force of law, whereas a journalist has only the authority of custom and persuasion. Thus, a journalist impersonating an FBI agent is arrogating to him- or herself an authority to which he or she is not entitled (and falsely pretending that failure to cooperate may result in negative governmental action), whereas an FBI agent impersonating a journalist is only drawing on the courtesy which many people choose to voluntarily grant to journalists.

    Or something like that.

  • Sep 13th, 2016 @ 6:35am

    Removal link update

    A year and a half later, the provided link for the Lenovo removal-instructions PDF is now a 404; as best I can tell, the official removal instructions and list of affected products from Lenovo are now at: erfish-application/ta-p/2029206

    That page does not itself actually explain how to remove Superfish, but it does link to two separate pages for that purpose, one of which provides a dedicated removal tool.

  • Sep 12th, 2016 @ 7:50am

    Wrong URL on the Watson link?

    The links on the Watson piece point to, which appears to be a website related to an e-cigarette (vaping) product. Did the wrong URL get put in here, somehow?

  • Sep 12th, 2016 @ 7:40am

    Re: "Third party doctrine"

    Since this hasn't been answered in the intervening year-and-a-half, here's my understanding of the logic underlying the use of the term "third party" in this context.

    The first party is the one to whom the "papers and effects" in question belong.

    The second party is the one who is looking to gain access to those same items - i.e., the government.

    If this second party demanded them from the first party, the first party would have a right under the Fourth Amendment to refuse; if the second party tried to access them in the first party's possession without permission, or tried to take them from the first party without permission, that would be a violation of the Fourth Amendment.

    The third party is the one to whom the first party has voluntarily provided those same items.

    The Third Party Doctrine holds A: that since these items do not belong to this third party, the third party does not have a Fourth Amendment right to refuse the second party's demand to see or obtain them, and if the second party were to access them without permission that would not be a violation of the Fourth Amendment, and B: that since the first party voluntarily provided the items to the third party, the first party does not have a Fourth Amendment right to preclude the third party from handing them over.

    Thereby neatly precluding anyone from having a Fourth Amendment right to object to the second party's obtaining these items.

  • Sep 9th, 2016 @ 11:02am


    Net Neutrality does not apply to content delivered internal to a given ISPs network, only to the interconnections.
    This is not true.

    Net Neutrality, in its purest form, means that the network in question does not know or care what the data traveling over it is, or where that data comes from or is going to; all the network cares about is how to most efficiently get the data to the place where it exits that network, on its way to whatever its final destination may be. The next hop may be another network, or it may be the machine which is the final destination; again, a neutral network neither knows nor cares which.

    If the ISP is checking the in-flight data enough to be able to tell whether or not it is from an internal source, the ISP is already violating the principle that the network should be neutral.

  • Sep 6th, 2016 @ 5:21am


    Just for the record, a year and a half or so later: my understanding is that this is actually a quirk in the local law. More specifically, nder the law of that state, the "refusing to obey lawful order of a police officer" statute is also the "resisting arrest" statute - and, consequently, any arrest for "refusing to obey lawful order" is classified under the law as "resisting arrest".

  • Sep 3rd, 2016 @ 9:48am

    Not the first time people have been confused by the "Copyright" topic icon

    The last image includes a statement that "in a decade of using these topic icons, no one has ever confused [the Copyright topic icon] for [a copyright notice]".

    That's not actually true. Sometime in the past two years, one of the usual trolls - I think it was out_of_the_blue - attempted to "gotcha" you by pointing out that a particular story was labeled as "Copyright by Mike Masnick", pointing to the topic label, which did include those words in that order; at least one person (who may or may not have been you) pointed out in response that this was the topic label, not a copyright notice, and (IIRC) the guy unsurprisingly never responded.

    Unfortunately, I haven't been able to track down the exact article for reference; however, in trying to do so, I did find a Reddit thread in which someone made the same mistake: he/

    So it's happened at least twice in the past few years, prior to this current flap. Not terribly frequent, but still more often than "no one has ever".

  • Sep 2nd, 2016 @ 6:48am

    Re: Re: Respect is earned, not granted by position.

    My position / argument on the question of respect is:

    No one deserves respect by default, until they show that they do deserve it.

    Everyone deserves courtesy by default, until they show that they don't deserve it.

    (Also, I'd probably back the idea that everyone deserves the benefit of the doubt by default, until they show that they don't. There's room to convince me otherwise on that one, though.)

  • Aug 28th, 2016 @ 10:37am

    Re: Can anyone say 'Conflict of interest'?

    On the other hand, if you split attack and defense into two agencies, there becomes room for the funding levels of the two to diverge; you could easily wind up with the "attack" agency getting far more funding than the "defense" one, to the point where the latter can't effectively do its job.

    Combine that with the fact that you'd end up with two separate organizations spending money to do duplicate research into the same thing - security vulnerabilities - and it's easy to see why someone might decide that having a single agency with both mandates is the better alternative.

    If the oversight weren't so biased in favor of the attack side, it might even have worked out.

  • Aug 26th, 2016 @ 6:29am

    (untitled comment)

    Beyond the alleged backing of Trump, there's more to be gained than simply pointing out the media's transparent disdain for the Republican candidate. There are also leaked -- but unreleased -- documents stored on agencies' servers.
    Wasn't the NYT one of the news organizations which received the Snowden documents? Most of which, reportedly, have not been released.

  • Aug 25th, 2016 @ 8:27am

    Re: Re: Re:

    Or rather, the shell, which is distinct from the OS - but which Microsoft calls by the same name, and distributes only in lockstep with the OS.

  • Aug 25th, 2016 @ 5:00am

    Re: End FPTP, End electoral college.

    I don't see why it would take a constitutional amendment to change the voting system from single-choice to ranked-preference. (I consider the term "first-past-the-post" to be ambiguous, because it seems to me to be more about how the votes are counted than how they are cast.)

    It would take a constitutional amendment for the federal government to do that, yes - but under the current terms of the constitution as I understand them (and if I've got this wrong, please do point out how), the conduct of elections is left to the states, and the states could switch to ranked-preference just as easily as some of them have switched to a caucus system.

    Which is part of why I maintain that the most effective way of getting this implemented in practice is to campaign for ranked-preference voting at the lower levels - not even just the state level, but (where applicable) also the county, city, and even lower levels.

    It's likely to be easier to convince people to make the switch when you can talk to more of them individually and when more of them already know you outside of the campaign - and once the system is in place and shown to be working at those levels, the example which that provides (and the fact that people will have already experienced it at the lower levels) should make it easier to convince people to put it in at higher levels.

  • Aug 24th, 2016 @ 8:33am

    Re: Re: Re: Who is lying here?

    Unfortunately, as long as we still have single-choice voting rather than a properly designed and implemented ranked-preference voting system, voting third-party will do nothing but give the major-party candidate with whom you disagree _more_ a better chance of winning.

    (I also don't see any way to effectively implement ranked-preference voting without also doing away with the electoral college, which both serves as a further obstacle to making that switch and might have its own downsides. The fact remains, however, that the switch is a necessary prerequisite for a third party to be truly successful.)

  • Aug 18th, 2016 @ 5:58am


    Even ignoring the aspect of this which John Fenderson addressed, there's still the fact that they are not in fact offering a "discount" compared to their previous pricing.

    Instead, they are charging the same amount as before for the with-tracking service, and more on top of that for the without-tracking service.

    No one gets a discount there; everyone continues to pay at least as much as they used to before this tracking version of the service came along. It's just that you now have the option to pay even more in order to get what you used to get for the basic price.

  • Aug 17th, 2016 @ 8:42am

    Re: Justified or not justified, according to whom?

    I propose the following criteria for determining whether or not a death caused by a police officer is justified:

    * If someone who is not a police officer caused a similar death under similar circumstances, would that killing be considered justified?

    * Had the person who was killed committed an act which would constitute a crime of a type which carries the death penalty?

    If the answer to either question is "yes", then the killing can be considered justified. Otherwise, it must be considered unjustified, and the officer should receive exactly the same sort of treatment as someone who is not a police officer would receive under the same circumstances.

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