Hackers have created Trojan horse malware targeted at Apple’s much-hyped iPhone device.
The package – more of a prank than a threat – poses as an “important system” upgrade supposedly needed prior to upgrading to version 1.1.3 of Apple’s firmware. The “iPhone firmware 1.1.3 prep” seems to lack malicious purpose. Problems kick in when users try to uninstall the package.
The bogus firmware reportedly affects components of other applications during the install process including Erica’s Utilities (a collection of command-line utilities for the iPhone) and OpenSSH. If the user chooses to uninstall the rogue package, these others applications will also be removed leaving users of the much-hyped device with the chore of reinstalling these applications.
This “prep” thing is supposedly to prepare your iPhone for jailbreak after the upgrade. So:
if you hadn’t tried to lock this thing down, people wouldn’t be looking for these “prep” utilities in all the dark corners of the net. Just open the damn thing up for all independent third party development, and a lot of this will disappear.
Raadseltje: wat gebeurt er als je probeert een ongeluk in de doofpot te stoppen, door iedere aanwezige zijn filmpje te laten wissen?
Gobby TV presenter Jeremy Clarkson has been forced to reverse his position after he lost money after publishing his bank account details in a newspaper column.
The Top Gear presenter rather rashly published his account details in a column in The Sun to back up his claims that the child benefit data loss furore, which resulted in the loss of unencrypted CDs containing bank details of 25m people, was a lot of fuss about nothing.
Clarkson published his bank account number and sort code, along with clues to his address, insisting that the worst that could happen was that someone could pay money into his account.
Days later Clarkson was forced to admit he was wrong after an unidentified prankster set up a £500 direct debit from the presenter’s account in favour of charity Diabetes UK, the BBC reports.
“The bank cannot find out who did this because of the Data Protection Act and they cannot stop it from happening again,” Clarkson said in a column published in the Sunday Times. “I was wrong and I have been punished for my mistake.”
Clarkson, never one to shy away from colourful or controversial commentary, is now hopping mad over the data loss. “Contrary to what I said at the time, we must go after the idiots who lost the discs and stick cocktail sticks in their eyes until they beg for mercy,” he said.
(Aside from the laugh, I have some respect for the man. He was wrong, admits it and, having learned from his mistake, is quite happy to change his opinion.)
Earlier this evening Bill Gates gave his final Microsoft keynote at the 2008 CES show in Las Vegas. Throughout the keynote he made many references to what he will do with his free time once he retires from day to day operations at Microsoft. It turns out Bill has big plans in addition to his foundation after all.
Obfuscatory math betrays this goal. The point of it isn’t to be a compact, clear, and unambiguous notation. The point of it to look scary. It’s to obscure things behind notation, so that the fact that you’re spouting bullshit is disguised by the fact that you’ve hidden beneath layers of symbols.
So, our moron starts with his definitions:
Definitions E = Existence (Every thing that really exist) U = Universe X = a deity outside the Universe C(a) = Creator of object a G = God (an Intelligent Creator)
f(t) = function of time (State), at a specific time t Y [Fn]→Z, means using Fact n, Y leads to Z
What is the point of defining the symbol “E” to mean existence, without defining what existence means? “X” as “a deity outside of the Universe”, when you haven’t defined what it means to be outside the universe? The point is to hide the weakness of your argument under the obfuscation of symbols. What’s the point of introducing this new notation “Y[Fn]→Z”, instead of the more standard “Y ∧ Fn ⇒Z”? Same thing. Nonstandard notation is more confusing to a reader. And obfuscatory math is all about confusion.
The definitions as shown above are, pretty clearly, gibberish. You can’t build any kind of meaningful proof out of rubbish like that. But our buddy isn’t going to let that stop him. So he moves on to a stack of “facts”, by which he means what we’d generally call “premises” – the fundamental, unproven statements that are the basis of logic. Here are his facts:
F1- There is nothing beyond logic, illogical is impossible (Paradoxes do not exist).
F2- Facts never contradict
F3- A fact is true by itself and true with any other fact
F4- Nothing comes from nothing (Cause & effect)
F5- Natural laws are independent from each other.
F6- Σb=N ∩ N<∞ where b∈U Number of elements (or objects) in the universe is finite
F7- U(T) ≠ U(T+t) where t≈0 for all T, t Universe is not static, state of U at any time T, does not equal its state after a small time t.
Already, he’s run off of the rails of his own notation. Above, he defined “U” as the universe, an object; in his facts, he treats U as a function. Even if we accept his notational sloppiness (which we shouldn’t, since he’s abusing for the alleged purpose of rigor), he’s asserting that U, as a function, has an important property, which he hasn’t proven, but which is far from being an obviously clear, atomic axiom.
But let’s be methodical. F1 is false. Logic isn’t a single thing; and for any given logic, per Gödel, there are things beyond its reach. You can argue about the interpretation of Gödel, but whatever your interpretation, there are statements that cannot be proven true or false. (The classic interpretation is that there are true statements that cannot be proven true within the system; many people are uncomfortable with that version, because “truth” is a property of the logic. But in any case, you can formulate a statement for which you cannot construct a valid proof of its truth or its falsehood.) So with F1, he’s already lost his argument.
F2 and F3 I won’t quibble with.
F4 is another big problem. “Nothing comes from nothing” is not a mathematical statement. And worse, it contradicts the statement that he wants to prove. He wants to prove that God exists and created everything. But if nothing comes from nothing, then where did God come from? The usual answer to this is some variation of “God isn’t part of the Universe”, or “God is outside of the parameters of the proof”. But if that’s the case, the proof can’t reason about God. So he’s going to be stuck: if God could come into existence without a creator, then the universe could come into existence without a creator. Either way, you need an exception to this fact.
F5 is another totally bogus statement. What’s a “natural law”? What does it mean for natural laws to be “independent”? He’s not defining those mathematically, while alleging that he can use them in a mathematical proof. Sorry, not allowed.
F6 is, ostensibly, the statement that the universe is finite. Sorry, no. If your proof is going to rely on the finiteness of the universe, you’re going to need to prove it. And the statement itself is a classic of obfuscation. Near as I can tell, it’s ill-formed. Given that he invents his own notations, maybe he’s got something in mind by this, but I can’t make head nor tails out if it. It’s nonsensical.
F7 is, basically a statement that there is no recurrence of states of the universe after a short period of time. Again, it’s something that needs to be proven. There are, demonstrably, ways of showing state recurrences given a sufficiently long period of time. But there’s no reason, a priori, to assume that you can’t have a short-period recurrence. This is not an acceptable premise.
So, we’re off to a roaringly bad start, and we haven’t gotten past the premises. Let’s get to his proof.
One famous example is the “sliding finger bug” on the Diebold AccuVote-TSX, the machine used in Cuyahoga. In 2005, the state of California complained that the machines were crashing. In tests, Diebold determined that when voters tapped the final “cast vote” button, the machine would crash every few hundred ballots. They finally intuited the problem: their voting software runs on top of Windows CE, and if a voter accidentally dragged his finger downward while touching “cast vote” on the screen, Windows CE interpreted this as a “drag and drop” command. The programmers hadn’t anticipated that Windows CE would do this, so they hadn’t programmed a way for the machine to cope with it. The machine just crashed.