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[personal profile] liv Mon 2017-06-26 20:00
Music meme and gaming

Day 9 of the (in my case very slow-running) music meme asks for a song that makes you happy. And I have quite a lot of those, making me happy is a big reason I have a music collection at all. I think I'm going to go for Complex person by The Pretenders. The lyrics are not all that cheerful in some ways, but I love the bouncy tune and I always hear this as a song about determination and not letting things get you down.

video embed, actually audio only )



Also I've had a good week for playing games: mostly list with short comments )
[Current Mood: | cheerful]
[Current Music: |Poe: Hello]

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[syndicated profile] schneier_no_tracking_feed Mon 2017-06-26 17:30
Separating the Paranoid from the Hacked

Posted by Bruce Schneier

Sad story of someone whose computer became owned by a griefer:

The trouble began last year when he noticed strange things happening: files went missing from his computer; his Facebook picture was changed; and texts from his daughter didn't reach him or arrived changed.

"Nobody believed me," says Gary. "My wife and my brother thought I had lost my mind. They scheduled an appointment with a psychiatrist for me."

But he built up a body of evidence and called in a professional cybersecurity firm. It found that his email addresses had been compromised, his phone records hacked and altered, and an entire virtual internet interface created.

"All my communications were going through a man-in-the-middle unauthorised server," he explains.

It's the "psychiatrist" quote that got me. I regularly get e-mails from people explaining in graphic detail how their whole lives have been hacked. Most of them are just paranoid. But a few of them are probably legitimate. And I have no way of telling them apart.

This problem isn't going away. As computers permeate even more aspects of our lives, it's going to get even more debilitating. And we don't have any way, other than hiring a "professional cybersecurity firm," of telling the paranoids from the victims.

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[syndicated profile] xkcd_feed Mon 2017-06-26 04:00
Telephoto

I was banned from the airliners.net photography forum by concerned moderators after the end of my lens started brushing against planes as they flew by.
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[syndicated profile] schneier_no_tracking_feed Mon 2017-06-26 11:59
The FAA Is Arguing for Security by Obscurity

Posted by Bruce Schneier

In a proposed rule by the FAA, it argues that software in an Embraer S.A. Model ERJ 190-300 airplane is secure because it's proprietary:

In addition, the operating systems for current airplane systems are usually and historically proprietary. Therefore, they are not as susceptible to corruption from worms, viruses, and other malicious actions as are more-widely used commercial operating systems, such as Microsoft Windows, because access to the design details of these proprietary operating systems is limited to the system developer and airplane integrator. Some systems installed on the Embraer Model ERJ 190-300 airplane will use operating systems that are widely used and commercially available from third-party software suppliers. The security vulnerabilities of these operating systems may be more widely known than are the vulnerabilities of proprietary operating systems that the avionics manufacturers currently use.

Longtime readers will immediately recognize the "security by obscurity" argument. Its main problem is that it's fragile. The information is likely less obscure than you think, and even if it is truly obscure, once it's published you've just lost all your security.

This is me from 2014, 2004, and 2002.

The comment period for this proposed rule is ongoing. If you comment, please be polite -- they're more likely to listen to you.

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[personal profile] marnanel Mon 2017-06-26 13:05
"Ugh, troll bogies!"

[This was the review of “Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone” I posted on June 8th 1999, shortly before the release of “Azkaban”.]

It's been quite a while since I enjoyed a previously unread children's book as much as I enjoyed HP&TPS. At first, the book did seem to skip through genres quite jerkily: I think the introduction, an ugly-duckling story as with the start of, say, James and the Giant Peach, was a bit too long for a section so separate from the rest of the story. But the mystery part was excellent and I never guessed the secret. (It's an interesting point that there's no way you can be really evil if you have a stammer.) Considered as a school story... I'm not sure I can tell: the conventions for stories about boys' schools and girls' schools are so different, and good stories (such as this one) about co-ed schools are correspondingly so rare. Perhaps this is just my limited experience.

Incidentally, I wonder how much she was influenced by DWJ. The idea of the Ministry of Magic is very similar to Chrestomanci's department (though with different motives); you could perhaps draw (a few) parallels with Witch Week.

The description of the first few days at the school did get slightly irritating, because your attention kept being summarily drawn to a rapid succession of things which were (or seemed to be) just for show, without any obvious use in the story (e.g. the Choosing Hat): it was rather as though the author had invited you over to show you her holiday snaps. This is one of the places where I'd draw unfavourable comparisons with the subtle way DWJ has of doing the same thing; nevertheless, there are lots of good little ideas used well, with Diagon Alley and the Every Flavour sweets being especially memorable.

A few oddnesses: I'm sure Hermione's logic puzzle has more than one solution. The bizarre HM turned without warning into a bizarre moralist beside the Mirror of Erised (though you could draw comparisons with his behaviour by Harry's sick bed). Quidditch was rather run to death. Were there really no half-decent people in the whole of Slytherin? And by the way, I'm fairly sure I remember reading in Brewer that the Philosopher's Stone was pink and crumbly, not scarlet... hmm!

But it's also been a while since I've slowed down towards the end of a book because I know I'm going to miss the characters (cf. the Neverending Story). So I think I'll look out for the sequel... besides, I want to know whether Harry & Hermione get together :) . I'll certainly be recommending this to people I know who are sensible enough to want to read it.

[And a small claim to fame: AFAIK I was the first person to try to create a Harry Potter newsgroup.]

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[syndicated profile] markov_stoats_feed Mon 2017-06-26 12:00
Monday, 26 June 2017 : the Stoat Distribution of the Day.

stoats!

Day 1386. There are 317 red stoats, 172 blue stoats, and 511 green stoats.


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[personal profile] andrewducker Mon 2017-06-26 12:04
Interesting Links for 26-06-2017

[xpost |http://andrewducker.livejournal.com/3591937.html]

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[syndicated profile] questionable_content_feed Sun 2017-06-25 23:22
Mister Coolguy




Ads by Project Wonderful! Your ad could be here, right now.

so cool.....

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[syndicated profile] hacker_news_daily_feed Mon 2017-06-26 00:00
Daily Hacker News for 2017-06-25

The 10 highest-rated articles on Hacker News on June 25, 2017 which have not appeared on any previous Hacker News Daily are:

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[personal profile] marnanel Sun 2017-06-25 22:02
I am a rose

This is the first of our rose plants to flower.
The plant's name is Sheila.


I've been growing roses all my life.
I wear a necklace of rosewood.
In many ways, I am a rose.

Roses aren't naturally climbing plants, like bindweed or grapevines. They must be cared for, and bound to a structure. And I've learned that I need to give myself a structure, or I can't naturally climb.

I am a rose.

Roses need work. They must be pruned. The pruning is painful, but without it they won't flower.

I am a rose.

Nobody cares about dog-roses, nobody notices them, but they grow wild wherever they please. The popular roses that everyone admires are sterile and can't spread: they survive because they're grafted onto a dog-rose root. The roses nobody cares about are the roses that keep the others alive.

I am a rose.

I grew up near one of the biggest rose nurseries in the country, so everywhere there was me, there were roses too. I fell into many a rosebush while I was learning to ride a bike. I carefully grew one up the side of the house, a yellow rose with a mind of its own: soon I had to leave it to its own devices because it had grown taller than my arms could reach.

I am a rose.

When I was about six I had a dream of a concentration camp. I had been imprisoned, along with many other humans, by gaseous aliens who lived on methane. The armed guards would float around our cabins and the parade ground, terrifying us as much as they intimidated us.

Of course when you're sent to the camps, they take everything away from you: all your property as well as your dreams and your name. But I'd smuggled in one memento: a small twig of rosewood. I kept it in the pocket of my grey uniform and squeezed it tight whenever I was homesick.

One day I realised that roses have thorns. And that was the day I used the rosewood to burst and kill the guards at the gate, and run free into the outside world. One small piece of reality had torn a hole in the nightmare.

I am a rose.

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[syndicated profile] markov_stoats_feed Sun 2017-06-25 12:00
Sunday, 25 June 2017 : the Stoat Distribution of the Day.

stoats!

Day 1385. There are 353 red stoats, 175 blue stoats, and 472 green stoats.


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[personal profile] andrewducker Sun 2017-06-25 12:00
Interesting Links for 25-06-2017

[xpost |http://andrewducker.livejournal.com/3591915.html]

Link7 comments | Reply
[personal profile] rmc28 Sun 2017-06-25 10:04
Events of note

Last weekend we made a family visit to the inlaws in High Wycombe, for some low-key hanging-out time together for the cousins to play together and the adults to gossip.  It was Too Hot, but at least every train on the way home had aircon, as did the taxi.  We experimentally departed from Cambridge North, as we are roughly equidistant from the two railway stations.  Advantage: not going through the centre of Cambridge. Disadvantages: only one direct train per hour to London on the weekend, no cafe or shops (yet), slightly more expensive by taxi.  But it was worth conducting the experiment to be sure.

We all struggled with the heat this week.  This house does a good cross-breeze when such a thing is worth doing - this week that was usually from approx 9pm to 7am, so a lot of opening and closing windows and doors according to temperature and people being awake.  We acquired a standing fan to help. I did a lot of waking up about 5am to open things and then droop back on my bed waiting for the breeze to help. I think I'd be a lot less resentful of the lost sleep if I'd been able to be productive with the time, but no.

I went out to a PARTY yesterday and enjoyed catching up with people, and being introduced to Subjective Guess Who?  This is played using the standard board game set, but you can only ask questions which have no objective answer - some memorable ones from last night included "Have they ever played World of Warcraft?" and "Are they a morning person?".  The kibbitzing from the audience is the best part.

Going to the party was utterly self-indulgent given the state of my studying since the election. Today will probably not include much studying either, as plans already include: taking C to see Transformers: The Last Knight, attempting to get some sandals beforehand, getting in my weekly call to my mother before she gets on a bus to San Francisco, and making the cheating version of Tudor costume for C's class trip to Kentwell this week.

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[syndicated profile] hacker_news_daily_feed Sun 2017-06-25 00:00
Daily Hacker News for 2017-06-24

The 10 highest-rated articles on Hacker News on June 24, 2017 which have not appeared on any previous Hacker News Daily are:

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[syndicated profile] markov_stoats_feed Sat 2017-06-24 12:00
Saturday, 24 June 2017 : the Stoat Distribution of the Day.

stoats!

Day 1384. There are 351 red stoats, 164 blue stoats, and 485 green stoats.


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[personal profile] andrewducker Sat 2017-06-24 12:00
Interesting Links for 24-06-2017

[xpost |http://andrewducker.livejournal.com/3591593.html]

Link10 comments | Reply
[syndicated profile] hacker_news_daily_feed Sat 2017-06-24 00:00
Daily Hacker News for 2017-06-23

The 10 highest-rated articles on Hacker News on June 23, 2017 which have not appeared on any previous Hacker News Daily are:

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[syndicated profile] schneier_no_tracking_feed Fri 2017-06-23 21:23
Friday Squid Blogging: Injured Giant Squid Video

Posted by Bruce Schneier

A paddleboarder had a run-in with an injured giant squid. Video. Here's the real story.

As usual, you can also use this squid post to talk about the security stories in the news that I haven't covered.

Read my blog posting guidelines here.

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[syndicated profile] schneier_no_tracking_feed Fri 2017-06-23 18:57
The Secret Code of Beatrix Potter

Posted by Bruce Schneier

Interesting:

As codes go, Potter's wasn't inordinately complicated. As Wiltshire explains, it was a "mono-alphabetic substitution cipher code," in which each letter of the alphabet was replaced by a symbol­ -- the kind of thing they teach you in Cub Scouts. The real trouble was Potter's own fluency with it. She quickly learned to write the code so fast that each sheet looked, even to Linder's trained eye, like a maze of scribbles.

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[syndicated profile] xkcd_feed Fri 2017-06-23 04:00
Refresh Types

The hardest refresh requires both a Mac keyboard and a Windows keyboard as a security measure, like how missile launch systems require two keys to be turned at once.
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