Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Connect your XBOX to a network utilizing a webpage authentication server.

If the issue is webpage authentication. I have work out a solution. I travel a lot and stay in hotels as a result. A lot of these hotel offer wifi service but they require you to authenticate via a webpage. Since the xbox dose not have a web browser (this is unfortunate) authenticating via a webpage is not possible and will fail every time.  However these authentication systems rely on the devices MAC address. You will notice that when you authenticate a device once than you can disconnect and then reconnect without authenticating again. This is because the authentication system remembers your client devices MAC address. To implement a workaround you have to ensure your xbox is not attempting to connect to the system. Go to system setting > network > configure network > additional settings > advanced settings to find the MAC address assigned to your XBOX. Next thing you do is change/spoof the MAC address on another device to the MAC address assigned to your xbox. You than connect and authenticate using the spoofed device using the webpage authentication method required. You than disconnect this device and change the MAC address back. Than you connect you xbox to the network. The network authentication system should see the same MAC address and not issue a challenge and allow the connection.

Alternatively you may change the MAC address on the xbox to a MAC address of an already authenticated device. This would require you to change the MAC address on the other device however so that there is not a layer 2 conflict. I menton this method to be complete about it I don't wanna get a bunch of winers telling me how I could change the MAC address on the XBOX and that I didn't menton that. This method will work but is more of a pain in the ass because now your are swapping MAC addresses around on two devices instead of two changes on one device. Whatever hope you all understood all of that and happy gaming.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

The largest Software project in the history of the universe?

I recently read that Healthcare.gov consisted of 500 million lines of code. As a person educated in software development this report got my attention. The reason this grabbed my attention is the shear size of a project of that magnitude would easily make this the largest project ever in the history of computing. To put this in perspective, if you add up major Microsoft OS releases between 1993 - 2003* you get around 149 million lines of code. The only projects that come close to this are some OpenSource projects, but these are exceptions because they are typically layers of code that are accumulated over decades, involving tens of thousands of individual programmers. The point of this article was to point out how rediculis this claim by the administration is and the best way to do this is with math, yeay.

1000 Avg SLOC 1 programmer produces per month.
500,000,000 SLOC
36 months
13,888.889 programmers needed to complete project.
$70,000 Web developer median wage
$9,722,222,222.2 total labor cost.

Please note that this is only dealing with the labor cost of SLOC (source lines of code) This doesn't include Project cost which would be effectively 33% more.

Let us also consider that 13,888 web developers would be around 7% of the workforce. I was hoping to track median wage statistics over the years in which this project was in development, but unfortunately the BLS didn't track web programmers specifically until 2012. A fluctuation this large in the available labor would have resulted in a significant supply reduction which could have been verified independently. That is if the BLS was tracking those stats. I also searched all of the major industry publications for mentions of Obamacare the ACA or healthcare.gov during the time period between Jan 2009 - Oct 2013 Nothing was mentioned. This has to be the most information secure project ever. You don't simply hire and employ over 20K people and no one notices.

Now all of this supposition is based on accepting that the stories are accurate as reported. Obviously this is not the case. There is no way that this website dose contain 500 million unique lines of source code. That is to say that it may contain 500 million lines of reused code. this is much more conceivable. If this is the case however this project was run by an idiot who has no concept of software development or technology in general. I can just imagine that this was some half hazard attempt to hack several CMS's together to make a system that some how routed information between several databases. I haven't personally professionally programmed a Back-end in years but I can tell you this much there is no way this project should have $400+ million, nor should it have required 500 M-LOC. The reason I can safely say this is because the software requirement is simply not there to require that much data management. Oh yes I know there are several databases and so on blah blah. Debian 5.0 the largest code base I could find is 324 M-LOC. Debian is multiple magnitudes greater in complexity than a website of any complexity. I would say that Google search wouldn't contain much more than 1-5 million. I doubt it contains that much.

In conclusion I have to say that this whole story about the amount of code involved is pure fiction. It also tells me that there were like 4 guys in a conference room for like 6 months merging 2 or three OpenSource CMS systems together attempting to meet the system specifications. That is the real story of Healtcare.gov.

Thursday, 10 October 2013

Mass behavioral modification via the ACA

Right now there is a huge fight over the ACA because it is a huge entitlement that takes over 1/6th of the U.S. economy. The conservatives really don't like this because of the ramifications of a heavy slow moving bureaucracy that is prone to lose money taking over a large portion of the economic power of the country. This is a reasonable objection. As a former soldier in the ARMY I can tell you all first hand that the government is incapable of doing anything at a reasonable efficiency.

The liberal claim is that the ACA is all about helping those people who cannot find affordable health care. The root of the plan is to make the cost of health care weighted so that those who are generally healthy and young off set the cost to those who are Old and sick. This is why the individual mandate is so very important. If people can opt out of the system than they cannot soak the healthy for the money they need to pay for the sick. Another intention is to insure people who did not have the means to buy health care on the private market. It is expected to accomplish this by subsidizing the cost to those in need. Helping people is a good cause and I can agree with it. Do not forget your sick, your poor, your widows and orphans. These words I hold in the highest regard.

I could pick apart both these arguments and explain why they are both flawed. The intention here, however, is to bring attention to the subtext that is largely ignored. There is a large portion of the liberal left that contends this law dose not go far enough because it is not a single payer system. A single payer system is a traditional socialized healthcare system in which the government pays for all of health care with revenue from taxation. From the perspective of the socialist the intention of the system is to take the gains from those who are more productive and redistribute it to those who are less productive because of perceived disadvantage. The ACA contains the mechanism to accomplish this. Making this argument moot.

The true intention of this system is multifaceted and occurs on several levels. The obvious intention is to force everyone to participate in the system. By making participation an imperative it allows the collection of vast amounts of data on peoples habits and life style. Almost anything you do or think has some impact on your health. If a person worries about things a lot they have an increased amount of stress which over the long term could impact your health in various ways such as heart disease or high blood pressure. If one likes to eat fast food, this results in obesity and various other disorders. If a person is affected by these causes than the logical step is to penalize these behaviors. If a person smokes they are penalized, If a person eats more than there allowance of Big Macs than they are assessed a penalty.  The justification for punitive measures against undesirable behavior will be that this behavior hurt the community. Every persons information will be stored in the Federal Data Services Hub. The reasonable use for this kind of information is to form a behavioral profile on each individual and then of course modify that persons behavior to fit into the preferred model. In this way a population can be controlled by a central authority. This is the real danger of the ACA.

Perhaps you think I'm some sort of conspiracy nut job or whatever.  But human implanted RFID chips was one of the parts of the original ACA text.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Default not so much

It is distasteful that all of the media outlets a mischaracterizing the debt limit implications. Every time I hear a talking head on TV discuss the debt limit they use the term default as a synonymous with not raising the debt limit. This is simply inaccurate, and grossly misleading.

Let's take our own finances as a starting point for perposes of simplification. Let just say John here makes $5000 per month. John isn't comfortable with the life style that his pay check provides. John applies for a credit card with a $2000 limit and goes shopping. He got a credit limit that is roughly 40% of his income. The question is simply is it wise for John to raise his credit limit or to pay off his debt?

This is the same position our government is in. Not raising the debt limit dose not preclude the ability of the federal government to collect revenue. The government currently collects $260 billion per month. The payments on the barrowed money is about $30 billion. The government will hardly default on its debt if they do not raids the debt limit. The only real consequence would be that the government will have to live with in its means just like John.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Cantor missed the bigger picture

In response to Eric Cantor's statements referenced by his tweet earlier today.
I felt the need to point out a few things.

 “I am concerned that President Obama did not press Iranian President Rouhani to halt Iran’s ongoing support for radical Islamic terrorism..." "...its support of Bashar Assad’s war against the Syrian people."

 Well it's support of radical Islamic terrorism is limited to only those operations against U.S. Forces. I know this because while deployed to KOS Kalsu in Iraq the insurgents attacked our base almost exclusively using Iranian made rockets. The support they may or may not extend to insurgents in Afghanistan is less apparent, if it exist at all. The reason for my doubt is simply that Iran no longer has interest in supporting radical Islamist. There interest has shifted to supporting Syrian President Assad. the reasoning for this is simple as long as the radicals are fighting Assad they lack the resources to turn on Iran. These activities are in Russia's interest as well. Putin is laughed at by some media personalities here but make no mistake this man is a formidable foe. He was the director of the KGB during the cold war. He got his chops matching against Ron Reagan and G. Bush Sr. If there is anyone on the world stage we should be concerned with it is this man. He's already making moves that will lead to undermining our global influence. By bringing Syria and Iran into compliance with UN requirement it will shift attention off of them. The next steps is to shift there attention onto the US. Like for example our human right violations (Guantanamo Bay).

Granted this is simply my theory and is based on nothing. But like the blog says it's something to think about. Iran and Syria coming into compliance in such short order is indicative someone pulling the strings behind the scenes. there is a puppet master.

Thursday, 30 May 2013

how al quida will win

al quida is being enabled by the U.S. government and the global media. It's simple to understand really. al quida's method is to simply get people empathize to with members who have martyred themselves. The Boston bombing is reveling in this case. One of the suspect in this case had a shoot out with authorities. The second suspect was shot during and interview with authorities. Islamic spokes persons contend that the authorities murdered the second suspect. They make accusations that his rights were violated and that he was only marginally involved in the Boston bombing.

I'm confidant that the majority of people see through this propaganda and dismiss the claims made by the extremists. However they only have to influence a few that are likely already feeling disgruntled. Our government for the past decade and a half has been actively stripping it's citizens of there constitutional rights. In the name of security our privacy has been eroded. This activity also contributes to the extremist cause, in that it enables them to accuse the government of being an oppressive regime. The conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan no matter there cause or reasoning are simply evidence of American imperialism.

All this is just fodder for recruiting new extremist. The root cause for Islamic distain for the US is our relation with Israel. If asked they would say something about how Israel oppresses the Palestinians. The truth of the matter is however the story of Abraham in which one son is given the promised land and the other is not. Well its true as far as the Islamic care they feel they have had there birth right stolen from them by the Jewish people. Because of this they will not rest until every Jew is dead and they possess the "promised land". Anyone that is not a true Islamic is an infadel and is only worth death or subjection. This is the extremist mind set. There is no negotiation or placation.

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Is Apple the new old Microsoft

I have been reading post on Apple Developer Network about how to access the file system on my iDevice. I have read several post which a user explained to another user that iOS doesn't have a file system like a normal computer. This is patently untrue, not only is it untrue it's deceptive. I'm sure that apple would like for all of it's users to believe this to be the case but it is simply, not so. The iOS file system is like any other file system you have experienced it contains a directory structure as well as a Master Boot Record and other various attributes you would normally associate with a Linux based files system. iOS like OSX is based on Darwin a branch of Berkeley Linux  The reason you don't get to access this file system is because apple seems to not want you to. The user that paid hard earned money for a device and associated software.

I remember a different time in Apple history, in the Mid 90's and late 80's when Apple products were a joy to have, I would boot my Mac Plus (decked out with 4Mb of ram and an 80mb external hard drive). I would load MUBBS and the lights on my external 14.4 USRobotics would dance with incoming commands and then settle into awaiting call. Then I power up my 6116 PowerMac running the latest OS of the day. (Went through several versions with apple starting with 6.0.1). I would work all day at designing things and developing things. You see, Apple Macintosh computers at this time were largely owned by creators and artist. They were more activist than the main stream and we used to be called Mac Evangelist. We would relish the opportunity to explain how our beloved Mac was far superior to any PC. No matter what we attempted to do with our Macs it worked. Installing new hardware was a breeze. Simply pop open the case, plug in and mount the new hardware and press the power button and listen for the happy mac boot up sound. Everything was simple and easy to do I had access to all things, I could load and unload extensions and control panels from the system to change how I wanted the mac to run. You wouldn't need the same extensions or control panels for running the latest BUNGiE game as you would for running large projects in Photoshop. Everyone was happy to pay for their software because they knew it would work.

Why am I writing this? Why am I upset with apple? Typically apple users are more tech savvy than your general population and I fail to understand why Apple has chosen to close their system so very much. I spent  half an hour attempting to transfer a file I created with one app to another app so that I could use it. I had to e-mail the file to myself copy it out of the e-mail, because there is no method of downloading attachments as there is no access to the file system and paste it into a third app which was my destination. This is ridicules and is contrary to everything I have ever known about apple products of the past. Yes I have heard all about the argument that the closed system reduces malware and protects the user. This too is a lie. It prevents third party developers for making effective tools to deal with such problems. I'm sure McAfee would love to release an app for your iPad to scan your file system for suspicious programs and malware. The truth is that they cannot do it. McAfee was basically born from Mac users. In my monthly copy of Mac Format There would be a CD and every CD of shareware games and other application there would be a fresh new shiny copy of McAfee's virus scanner. Now apple has chosen to lock them out of the entire iOS market along with everyone else.

The legal issue. I have heard it said several times that you cannot do this or that with your device legally. This too is a lie and untruth. There is no legal precedent in which a software or hardware distribution company could dictate to their customers a specific way in which the product, they paid for, may or may not be used. True Apple retains copyrights to their software and patents on their hardware. These regulations only cover methods of distribution and profit.

 I’m reminded of an incident with a Lucas Arts product "Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic" Now I was an active Modder during the heyday of this game. I was a regular poster on the forums and one day while modding I was wondering how I could make the game load one of my modded levels, initially, because every mod I had seen up until that point were modifications based on the games story line. I wanted to make a total replacement mod. A new game in essence so as I was looking through the various scripts and files I noticed that all the levels were referenced in a specific way and that one level would load the next and it would chain its way through the whole game. So how did the first level get loaded. I loaded my hex editor and cracked open the main EXE file and there in the midst of pure hexadecimal chaos was my golden nugget. The string of text that was responsible for loading the first map file in the game. I saved a copy of the current run time and made my edit, and saved a copy of the modded version. Back in the directory I swapped file names so my modded version would act in place of the original. I frantically launched the executable and "BING" it worked like a charm. After making this discovery I quickly pounded out a post to Lucas forums about my discovery. I would be hailed as the King of Modding KOTOR!!!!

It was not to be so, almost immediately my post was flagged and locked. Why what had I done?? I emailed the moderator and asked politely for an explanation. The reply I got set me back I could not believe what he was saying. "It is not legal to modify and distribute the binary, it says so in the TOS you got with the game." Yes I know this. I cannot distribute the binary in any form modified or not I only own the copy I paid for and distributing more copies of it would clearly violate the distributors rights and profits. I'm doing no such thing. I learned how to modify my copy and attempted to disseminate this information to other legal owners. In no way dose this even affect the rights and abilities of the distributor to make profit. The admin and I came to and agreement that the post would remain on the forum with the condition it was locked so there could be no discussion about it.

Maybe it's just me, Maybe I'm the stupid one. It's my thought that if you spend your money on something it's up to you how you utilize it. I totally agree that companies have an obligation and even a right to protect there intellectual property. I totally agree that if you use information to circumvent security emplacements to adversely affect or collect information you have no right to than you should be held accountable. What I do not agree with is any one company or entity dictating to it's community of customers what they can and cannot do. The main purpose for Apples closed system is to control and profit from all media distribution on its devices. Here is where I have a real problem. I'm a software developer who wants to write awesome new apps for iOS devices but I have to adhere to cretin guidelines and I can only collect profits for my work using a payment system that is propitiatory and owned by Apple. They collect a profit from each of my sales and they disperse the funds to me at their will and discretion.

I feel heavy in my heart that company they started in such a renegade fashion as the home brew computer club and on the funding a Volkswagen beetle that this same company is making draconian dictations of its own customers users and developers alike.

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