Thursday, January 21, 2010

At Least Some Risk ... May Keep Us Safe

I've got Wireshark and I was thinking about whether I could use it to spot evil code (e.g. viruses, worms, etc.) using the WiFi connection. I could, but could some of these code-villians bypass this monitoring? Maybe most evil-code-doers already were.
It's almost certainly possible for them to bypass the tool that captures the network traffic (WinPcap), though it would involve manipulating the network devices outside of the operating system commands.
This is a stark example of the inevitable fallibility of any passive defense. But I realized that that fact is also a blessing, despite it being most remembered a curse. Walls are made to keep people in too. Freedom is abused by the vicious, but it's the only way to survive some evils we visit upon each other.
I've been reading Little Brother by Cory Doctorow about a near-future 'anti-terror' near-police-state San Fransisco and I'm appreciating the good that may be being done by people otherwise overloading our inboxes with spam.

"Photography is like reality getting ready for a fancy dress party"

Awesome quote from this mini-interview. I found the quote on ilovethatphoto, and I found that site from flavorpill.
Looking at the photos on that site, I wondered anew how the hell it is that photos are art (or artistic)? It must be the same way the world itself seems like art sometimes.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Awesome band name 17

so ... what did u really think of my hat?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Friday, January 01, 2010

A justification (rationalization?) for gift-giving

I was just struck by the realization that I value providing specific experiences to people. Yes, I could give simply give my friend $5 – but I much more enjoy buying him a graph-paper notebook for his song lyrics, laundry lists, and engineering diagrams. But am I just acting selfishly, paying for the chance to know or say that I contributed or caused these 'wonderful' experiences? Would it be better to simply give $5?

The inevitable feedback-spaghetti of signaling games makes my head spin. What a precarious balance and never really achieved!

[If none of the above makes sense, go read Robin Hanson @ Overcoming Bias. He's always providing great examples of signaling in action.]