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Wise Kraken

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Rabble Rouser

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  1. Totally random … there were a ton of Microsoft Surface announcements this morning. Even a couple real surprises, which is pretty hard these days. Upside: I don't have to be *quite* as careful what I say or where, since I can't be fired for talking about any of these things now. Downside: I can already guess where a *lot* of my disposable income is going next year. https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/surface/microsoftevent?ocid=Oct19_int_omc_sur
  2. Not sure I can agree it would be harder. Floating is well understood. But it bears investigation. @NebulousMissy probably has actual info more at hand, but... For energy, I thought solar was quite possible, and wind was another completely acceptable and workable energy option. I'm not oposed to nuclear, either, but that could make the colony less independent from Earth than strictly necessary compared to local energy gather/store tech available. Batteries (i.e. energy storage) will be needed on either planet, and I don't think the weight is the issue. Releasing gas under pressure can be very effective at turning turbines. Heat pumps might be worth considering, too. I expect the pressure band would be pretty steady, based on gravity, same as the pressure of the depths of the ocean. It's a factor of the mass above. I'd expect temperature to fluctuate as weather, but with variations less severe than Mars. So AC/heating would be needed, but likely that would be easier, that is, requiring less energy to manage the difference for comfortably livable, than on Mars. The pressure controls would need to be engineered as carefully as habitats on Mars, since persistent leaks in either case are unacceptable (death sentences). I'm mainly talking about the CO2 poison danger in both cases, though, since venereal floating structures themselves could be built with redundancy, to float at finer granularity - say, rooms and halls - to avoid total collapse. The oxygen you need could be pulled out of the CO2 atmo as easy (easier?) than on Mars. The danger of losing things to the depths is probably similar to container ships here on Earth - no surface dweller will dive to the mid-ocean floor to get back their goods or bodies in case of sinking, but folks send stuff over these dangerous 2/3 of the planet's surface 24/7/365. Ah! Return fuel for interplanetary travel. Will need to put the manufacturing methane in place ahead of time. But that's same-same as Mars. Okay, someone *has* to get a vehicle back to Venus to sanity check these ideas. The trip would be shorter than to Mars...
  3. Length of password is quite important. But, too many people have seen or heard about the XKCD method. The words Correct, Horse, Battery, and Staple and all combinations of those words are part of the database for standard password guessing tools these days, commercial and otherwise. For that matter, so are most common English words, and most guessing tools can be tuned for target locales and businesses, such as to include local professional team names, brands, catch phases, and all their L33T variants. Ideally, identity systems should allow more secure auth methods that are either multi factor or hardware backed, or both (E.g. Windows Hello, phone auth, etc.). When you must use passwords, it's better to avoid straight combos of real words, since those will now be checked early in a standard attack. It's good to at least try putting punctuation and numbers in unusual places. Adding digits to a (non-remote attackable) wash PIN makes total sense, though. With a 1% loss rate, adding a digit should reduce it to 0.1% (or even less, if people get frustrated and give up.)
  4. *Rises from the depths* Never forget these. In fact, this Kraken is a bit Irish, and a bit Scots... I'm constantly fighting with myself, especially about which liquid of Oblivion is best, but I digress. Ever since I first read about this idea, I've wondered why we don't try it. Venus is closer, and the tech needed to keep people alive there is a lot easier to achieve. Indeed, floating at a comfy temperature just seems the more sensible extraterrestrial habitat to aim for ... much nicer than some frigid desert. I am biased, of course, but OTOT, the NASA types do seem to have a surface bias. They should do some deeper thinking. -Thinker of the Deep
  5. Thinker if the Deep arises alongside. :) We're just hours away from all the goodness. I even painted something to enter... though I doubt I've leveled up since last time. We'll see.
  6. I'm taking a couple days before Christmas to visit my folks. I flew, just me, to check in and see if there's anything I can help with. I'm glad I did, but it's tough seeing them. Despite my Dad having two aneurysms years ago, plus an uncounted number of min-strokes, and one major stroke where he had to relearn movement and speech, he is still sharp-witted, and full of ridiculous war stories, literally. That part's fun, honestly. What's not fun is he's on oxygen, since he has emphysema, and in more or less constant pain from gallstones as no surgeon would dare try to operate on him to remove them. Leaving their apartment is an ordeal for him that they rarely try to surmount, with a rolling oxygen tank of limited supply. He also has Dupuytren's contracture, and they've amputated both his pinkies, but his remaining fingers are curling up. Mom doesn't get out much, because she worries. They're resting, so I went to the library to connect to the internet. They don't have internet. I'll help her put up the mini-tree today to bring a little Christmas cheer. After that, maybe I'll hear some war stories.
  7. I'm doing my thread catch-up thing again (I'm still back on 340)... My skeletal dragon is a little smaller, but I still got a "Mwa-ha-haaa!" feeling when it arrived. BTW: My first Reaper order for my very own self (usu. better half takes care of our Reaper orders, not to mention our Kickstarter pledges, etc.). https://onedrive.live.com/?cid=35DCC67A73B27BD0&id=35DCC67A73B27BD0!329906&parId=35DCC67A73B27BD0!169&o=OneUp Do you have garlic in your soul? Weird. That would normally be a Tuesday. Second Tuesday is when major patches usually get release.... Oh, yes, Uber used to show up more often. He was all the rage for a while. Same-same. Always hated hail. Eyes like that are for herd animals to better notice movement of potential predators, but it requires the long part always stays level with the horizon. If you watch their eyes when they're cropping grass, the rectangle always stays level. Yeah, it's creepy looking. Orcus probably should just have circle pupils, though, as a top level predator. Likewise, dragons shouldn't have vertical slit "reptile" eyes, either, since they are high off the ground. Cf. Eyes of house cats vs. great cats. I know, I know... picky, picky.
  8. In other news, we went to teenaged daughter's all school holiday concert last night. She's in concert choir, and it was great, but phone video never works out, and I didn't end up recording, just enjoying. Stuff I hadn't heard before, and well executed. There was also the jazz band, multiple choirs, strings, percussion (with tubular bells), ensemble, and they had a big finish with all the bands/orchestras coming together to do their own rendition of Trans-Siberian Orchestra's "A Mad Russian's Christmas", which I'd never heard before, complete with electric wind instruments (which I'd never heard live before). I was impressed. For everyone who hasn't heard what I'm talking about, found this on YouTube for reference:
  9. Better half just explained recursion to our teenaged daughter, with examples of Tower of Hanoi and searching a binary tree. Daughter's response: "Oh, yeah, that makes sense." Proud papa. --Wise Kraken Thinker of the Deep
  10. NC what happened, here? Careful, or you could get band. http://pairadocsband.com/
  11. 'Tis the season for Star Wars, Calvin & Hobbes snowmen, and Harry Potter marathons. Now, put them together: https://www.boredpanda.com/calvin-hobbes-star-wars-drawings-brian-kesinger/?utm_content=inf_10_2558_2&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=link&utm_campaign=socialedge&tse_id=INF_4acb6540dabc11e7b926579f881108d6
  12. Ah, yes, Clash of the Titans. I got kind of stoned for that picture, probably why I forgot.
  13. That is ... concerning. Are these are professional websites where the org has to do something on your behalf as a legitimate part of the job? Anything personal there? Even if nothing personal, and it's a legit business need, passwords themselves can be pretty personal. Before handing them over, I'd change the passwords to all those sites to something you don't use anywhere else, and avoids any password generating algorithms you normally use. Privacy is something you can't get back. The worst thing is that if they really need your password on an on-going basis, it means they have to store it somehow so it can be seen in plaintext somehow, and databases of passwords are a VERY valuable target for bad guys. Not just for the literal passwords, but to get more insights into how people make them, so they become easier to guess in general. Storing password proofs with reversible encryption hasn't been a decent practice since ... hrm, well, not sure it ever was. There are a number of better ways to do this, from federating through a trusted identity system, to giving you a new identity on the archaic systems (possibly copying over data), to delegating your authority to another identity on the system, to just moving to a more secure authentication system for these systems. That's off the top of my head, and I bet there are more. Bleah. Sorry you have to deal with that.
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