Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/03/30/comments/
Heathrow fingered over prints as Apple bungles EULA
And don't use a gun for home improvement
Comments Apple cocked up the licence agreement for its Safari browser by forbidding installation on Windows PCs. The EULA only allowed users to install the browser on "a single Apple-labeled computer at a time." Apple quickly changed the licence agreement to say that you can install it on "each computer owned or controlled by you." But it can't exist on more than one computer at a time. What fun. We've included comments on both articles.
Apple-labeled computer? So, sticky label + marker pen = Valid Licence?
That's not impossible! You just have to install Windows on your Intel Mac.
Then you'd be compliant. And totally stupid.
My PC has a Golden Delicious sticker on it, does that comply with the EULA?
Actually, I'm fairly sure Apple can't legally offer Safari for Windows anyway.
Why? Well, it uses WebKit for Windows, which is based on the LGPL-licensed KHTML. Now, the LGPL requires that all libraries that the LGPL-licensed code depends on are also under the LGPL or a compatible license (except ones supplied with the OS or complier). This is to prevent unscrupulous companies circumventing the intention of the LGPL by sticking critical parts of the code in closed source libraries under nasty license terms.
Apple's Windows port of WebKit depends on several closed-source, non-redistributable libraries - specifically, Windows ports of Apple frameworks. Therefore, it violates both the spirit and the letter of the LGPL, they have no legal right to distribute it, and any major contributor to KHTML before the fork could take them to court, force them to cease distribution, and probably make some nice cash on the side.
(Also, Apple's license for these libraries is nasty - as far as I can tell, it forbids anyone who compiles the Windows version of Webkit themselves from redistributing their compiled version, since the libraries are statically linked and the license forbids redistribution in any form.)
So, I don't have to own the computer, but I can control it? Kind of puts a neat spin on allowing hackers to push the software for us, completely legally. Maybe it is a way for Apple to justify pushing this software to all of the Windows computers out there... All your PC are belong to us!
Isnt Safari free? What do Apple care about how many machines I install it on?
This is very frustrating as an IT admin. I have a very specific job of maintaining AND UPDATING ~ 1400 PCs day in and day out, and the idea that Apple sliding their browser into the "critical updates" screen is like MS adding "ONE CARE" to their "critical updates" list. And to forget to change your EULA to reflect these new changes is simply catching Jobs with his pants down in an effort to increase the popularity of his software. If I had previously installed Safari and confirmed our cold fusion backends were approved for SAFARI browsing, then I would not be so upset.
*siiiigh* And now my phone is ringing off the hook... Time for a pub break....
US airport control staff have begun inspecting the contents of passengers' laptops. This raises concerns over privacy and whether one can truly be held responsible for everything on their machine. You didn't like it one bit:
Which user are they going to log on as? If I create a new user (no admin rights) and log on as that then its not going to give them much at all is it?
As its a work's laptop I can always say that I do not have admin privs (or access to the administrator account) so they can't see anything that doesn't belong to the user they've logged on as.
I guess they'd just seize my computer and lock me up
What would happen if you have information on your laptop that is under a Non Disclosure Agreement ?
Letting the customs see it will violate the NDA not letting the customs look through it would be making yourself a likely candidate for government harassing untill you give in.
If you run an operating system that has some sort of security then you could:
1. Create a dummy account containing a number of unimportant files. Give this account the minimum number of privileges.
2. Use this account when stopped at the border with your laptop and asked to start the machine.
3. When asked to provide access to other files, you can reasonably claim not to have sys admin rights and refer the enquirer to your corporate IT department (if you have one), hoping that they aren't going to bother. Of course, they might bother and corporate IT might give them the sys admin password over the phone, but how likely is that?
Anon rodent says: "Terrorists win, again"—if you still believe this is all about terrorism.
While you focus primarily on personal privacy issues, what about business? You might be returning from a field-research trip, some conference, contract negotiations or whatever, your computer might be filled to the brim with critical business or even NDA-material, or maybe your latest novel or critical analysis of modern-day fashism that makes government X look bad. Now would you please hand that over, decrypted, for reasons of national security, to be copied, analyzed, stored?
Invasive searches like the ones described lead to people no longer carrying any data of any value whatsoever, thereby curbing travellers' work efficiency -> "Terrorists win". So if you bother to take along a computer at all, you will have all data on some secure remote sever, and you will rather not put the server data (and no encryption, no hidden partitions, no nothing) on the machine but in your head. If you believe in secure remote severs that is. Now if that machine got inspected, you would be suspicious as hell, and you know what happens to suspicious people who will not admit. They get special treatments, sometimes even a free vacation in an interesting place. Like Syria. So you might better fill your machine with some random "identity" bull in order to make it look "pure". Thereby, being denied privacy essentially promotes a culture of lies and deception. I am not even touching on the inherently connected issues of classism and racism that determine who is searched and who is not.
A careless American who blew a hole in his wall attempting to install a satellite dish managed to shoot his wife dead in the process. The news provoked arguments over just what kind of flimsy walls would allow this and which tools would have been a better choice:
Readers outside the US may not be aware of this, but the gun manufacturers have a sideline of powder-actuated nail insertion devices.
Basically it's a .22 cartridge which is put into either a contrivance which then fires the nail into whatever it is you are nailing. Different powder loads for different materials - I imagine your nail goes really deep if you use a concrete load on a wood surface.
Anyway, I wonder if this guy gained inspiration for his idea from this extraordinary piece of hardware. In fairness, apart from the consequences, it did apparently work.
The tool is called a "Ram-set" (someone's trade name) and it works wonderfully well. I used one when I was building a small house - it would put a 25mm hardened steel nail right through a steel base channel and all the way into fully cured poured concrete. Bang. Bang. Bang. One bang = one nail all the way in. Think of it as a stapler for concrete. And yes, they are dangerous if not used correctly (safety glasses, gloves, and RTFM!!)
Houses in America are indeed largely made of wood, with plasterboard inside and wood paneling (or vinyl) called siding.
It's entirely possible for a .22 to penetrate this flimsy construction and still have enough oomph to kill a person. .22 Calibre weapons are not air rifles, and a .22 pistol is more than capable of completing the task of knocking a hole through a US home.
One caveat, older cities - and by that I mean those colonised and constructed by the British - have brick houses.
Surprisingly, even in places like Alaska, these wood homes are sufficiently insulated to stay warm enough for most people. My own home is 30 years old and at the cost of around 80 quid a month during 6 months of winter (at least 2 weeks per month the temperature drops below -20 C) it stays comfortably at around 68-70 degrees F.
Unsurprisingly they have a lot more problems with houses catching fire. And apparently with idiots shooting their wives through walls.
Having just decorated my back room, including laying a wooden floor (don't get me started), I can sympathise with wanting to shoot off handguns because everything isn't going your way. I live in the UK however, so I am glad that I can't own a weapon of this kind. I would have shot things if I had a loaded weapon next to me.
The obvious question is what the hell does the guy use to put Rawlplugs in ? A crossbow ?
A couple of years back, whilst in an indoor "range" (actually a ballroom) I had a go of a friend's compound bow. Never shot one before then though, oh, and I'd been drinking. A little.
Didn't get the hang of the trigger release so I mis-shot the thing at half-draw and put an arrow over a foot through an internal supporting wall. Could easily have fitted a rawlplug in that, if anyone had still been standing or willing to come anywhere near me until I put the bow down that was.......
The Register went on an exclusive guided tour of Heathrow's new Terminal 5 facilities. It turned out that the airport's design places a heavy emphasis on shopping since, as one BAA executive put it, "This airport has cost us over £4bn - we'd like to make that money back". There were also plans to fingerprint all passengers for security reasons - plans which have now foundered (see below) - and this predicatably brought out your ire:
"The walls of the double-glazed play area are magnetised - you can wrap them in a belt with a bit of metal in it and peg them up."
Lean up against them while your kids play. Then try and go for a relaxing massage or a bottle of cheap whisky to dull the pain, only to find out your credit cards are demagnetized? Someone's gonna get beaten to death.
So, the Terminal sees Human Beings as Human Beings? The technologically advanced, all seeing, all knowing Terminal sees us, collects our fingerprints, checks our baggage, and determines that we are unworthy, "inferior meatbags". It watches while we succumb, with a typical biological lack of willpower, to the advertising and commercial brainwashing scattered all around It's facilities. It learns about us. Anyone else find this disturbing? Also, anyone else find the similarity between The Terminal and The Terminator a little distressing?
Skynet is born, and it is a shopping centre with airplanes! Run!!
Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean the Terminal isn't out to get me!!
Black helicopter because they will be landing there too
The secret to Terminal 5, they told us, is that it will treat human beings "like human beings".
Err.... surely some mistake ? The secret to Terminal 5, they told us, is that it will treat human beings "like criminals".
Regardless of the privacy issues, look forward to lots of delayed flights where people check-in, have their baggage sent off then can't get into the boarding lounge because the fingerprint reader doesn't recognise the previously scanned finger. I am sure I am not alone in having fingers which refuse to scan reliably regardless of the scanning technology. I have been to a number of security exhibitions where manufactures boast of their incredibly low failure rates and have yet to find one which will match me against a previous scan without at least 5 attempts. I can forsee endless trouble if they introduce the ID card.
The Information Commissioner's Office has asked BAA to explain why fingerprint-taking necessary at Heathrow Terminal 5, and so the process has been suspended.
Likely the culprit will be BAA who regard the whole airplane malarkey as getting in the way of turning airports into shopping malls.
Haven't you noticed that the ever-earlier time you need to turn up at the airport and the curious absence of seating in the departure lounge leaves you all the more time to mooch around BAA's crappy, overpriced shops?
Roughly 10% of the population have indistinct fingerprint for various reasons. How are they going to be processed? Photographs? If so then what we are seeing is a deliberate attempt to make the use of fingerprint identification commonplace.
The government is desperate to show a working example of fingerprint identification outside very high security areas. An airport is a perfect testing ground. Will the population accept fingerprint identification if we claim it will prevent terrorism?
But what happens when there is an error and at the end of the day the database claims that there are people in the terminal who have been there for days? This should trigger a closure of the building and a complete security search. It will be interesting to see if this ever happens.
Strange how other airports (e.g. Munich) can apparently mix domestic and international without needing photos or fingerprints.
They seem to manage this by having the security (passport) check between the international gates and the rest of the gates, shops etc. which you have to pass through if you want to go to or from the international gates to anywhere else. The rest of the security apparatus is shared by all gates.
So there's one set of security search on entry, one big shopping area before the gates, and the gate area is nice and open. If it wasn't for the glass barriers between the international and domestic gate zones you'd think it was all one area.
So this move by BAA seems to be purely based on their inability to implement a modern airport layout, even with existing templates to follow.
The current advise is that this scheme is apparently illegal, that you should refuse to provide fingerprints, and should take a picture of any member of staff attempting to make you give your fingerprints.
I won't be providing my prints. Partially because I avoid BA and their joke of a service (so won't be going through T5), and partially because my prints don't register particularly well any more; too much wear & tear in the workplace - at least that's the excuse...
Teachers are losing it, apparently. Chris Keates, general secretary of the National Association of Schoolmasters Union of Women Teachers, said that pupils are getting stroppier and teachers are not getting the training to deal with problem students. You traded stories of your tearaway exploits and theories on just who should be killed or beaten in order to solve the problem.
We used to throw the ham from our ham sandwiches onto the ceiling so they stuck (above the teacher's desk). As the ham dried out it would slowly peel itself from the ceiling inevitable plunging groundwards at some point.
Imagine our delight when in one RE lesson the ham descended earthwards directly onto the chaplain's bible we was schooling us from! Complete quality moment ;o)
Anyway we had clips round the ear and robust canings to keep us in line at school. Has anyone else (UK) noticed that since caning and anything physical was banned in schools about 23(?) or so years ago that the inevitable rise of the chav began?
Although it's not the nicest job in the world I often wonder how teachers would cope with only 20 days of annual leave. After all we all have extra work to do outside contractual hours (well.. I don't cos I charge BY the hour... *grin* but I worked plenty of 60-80 hours weeks in the past on a 9-5 employment contract for no extra reward)
The two main issues with pupil behaviour are the parents (lazy ****ers that they are) and policy.
Teachers don't do anything to stop the kids misbehaving because they can't (well not if they want to work in education ever again) My girlfriend went for an interview at a secondary school last week and was told they have a policy of not shouting at the children. Not shouting! Bloody ridiculous if you ask me.
Basically if you don't offer *some* protection to the teachers rather than the little ****s then you're going to see a lot of experienced teachers decide to pack it in. All the best with the UKs "knowledge economy" when that happens.
We used to make paper rain. You took a piece of paper about three inches wide, rolled it up and chewed one end. You then threw it at the ceiling, chewed end first, so that it stuck. Repeated that until there were about 20 or so paper rolls on the ceiling above the teacher's desk.
They would dry out and fall down at intervals throughout the lesson. Getting the teacher on the head was a bonus. Much more entertaining than the other staple of filling Bunsen burner hoses full of water and sticking them back on the gas taps.
We once had a music teacher who made two pupils in my class stand on chairs either side of the school gates and sing hymns to the 1400 exiting pupils after the home time bell. No-one messed around in that lesson ever again....
Christopher Reeve's Horse
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