Friday, April 21, 2017

All Must Die

It has sometimes happened to me that when everything's all right, and every one's cheerful, it suddenly strikes one that one's sick of it all, and all must die.

-- Count Nikolay Ilyich Rostov, in Leo Tolstoy's novel War And Peace, Part 7, Section X, pg 477

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Wings Off Of Flies

Who wrote this statute?  Someone who takes pleasure in pulling wings off of flies?

-- Justice Samuel A. Alito Jr., on a case before the Supreme Court about where Civil Service and discrimination claims may be filed, New York Times, 17 April 2017

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Not So Easy

After listening for 10 minutes, I realized it's not so easy.  I felt pretty strongly that they had a tremendous power [over North Korea] ... but it's not what you would think.

-- President Donald Trump, on China's Xi explaining to him the history of the relationship between China and the Korean peninsula and whether China could easily help on North Korea, as Trump had previously asserted, Wall Street Journal, 12 April 2017

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

A Reality Of Consumer Life

Our protection against the worst corporate abuses is our smartphone videos.  That is a reality of consumer life right now.  It's kind of crazy.

-- Emily Bazelon, on Slate's Political Gabfest podcast, discussing the forcible re-accommodating of a passenger on a United Airlines flight, 13 April 2017

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Setting Man Free

Civilization is the progress toward a society of privacy.  The savage's whole existence is public, ruled by the laws of his tribe.  Civilization is the process of setting man free from men.

-- Ayn Rand (1905 - 1982), Russian-born American novelist, philosopher, playwright, and screenwriter, The Soul of an Individualist, For the New Intellectual, p 84

Friday, April 07, 2017

BrickerBot

A new malware strain called BrickerBot is bricking Internet of Things (IoT) devices around the world by corrupting their storage capability and reconfiguring kernel parameters.

The end result is a bricked IoT device that will stop working within seconds of getting infected.  Experts call these attack PDoS (Permanent Denial of Service), but they are also known as "phlashing."

All in all, BrickerBot isn't like anything we've seen before in the landscape of IoT malware.  Most IoT malware strains try to hoard devices in massive botnets that are then used as proxies to relay malicious traffic or to launch DDoS attacks. 

BrickerBot could ... be the work of an Internet vigilante that wants to destroy insecure IoT devices.

-- Catalin Cimpanu, in an article at BleepingComputer.com, 6 April 2017

Thursday, April 06, 2017

Nuclear Option

The power you give a politician you love today, to do something you want, is a power that will be used tomorrow by a politician you loathe, to do things you’ll hate.

-- Jim Babka (1968-), American writer and activist, in reference to the end of the 60-vote filibuster rule in the Senate for SCOTUS nominees, 6 April 2017