Software security – Blaming the victim

This strikes me as blaming the victim. If software updates were easy, stabile and automatic, then more software would be updated…

An Analysis of Conficker

…may be an interesting testament to the stubbornness of some PC users to avoid staying current with the latest Microsoft security patches.  Some reports, such as the case of the Conficker outbreak within Sheffield Hospital’s operating ward, suggest that even security-conscious environments may elect to forgo automated software patching, choosing to trade off vulnerability exposure for some perceived notion of platform stability. …

Who will hold them accountable?

That my government did this sickens me.

Red Cross: Torture Committed At CIA Sites – CBS News

“The United States engaged in acts of torture and ‘cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment’ upon prisoners held at secret detention sites operated by or in conjunction with the CIA, according to details from a secret report by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC). “

I’m sorry and ashamed that this happened at all and that people like Dick Cheney are still defending the practices. I knew America, America was a friend of mine, and Dick’s American is not my America.

announce: lift 1.7.0

I’ve just bumped LIFT to 1.7.0. The minor version increment stems from a change made to ensure-cases. Previously, singleton variables required an extra layer of parentheses, like:

(ensure-cases (var)
  ((1) (2) (3))
  (ensure (numberp var)))

This was silly so I’ve restructured the macro so that you now only need say:

(ensure-cases (var)
  (1 2 3)
  (ensure (numberp var)))

On the negative side, this is an incompatible change. If you’re using ensure-cases, you’ll need to modify your tests. I think it’s better in the long run.

This version also includes several other minor bug fixes and improvements in how the pathname of a test report is computed. Enjoy.

Please don’t give us software that works |

Here’s an odd backhanded compliment to Apple’s iLife software:

$800 Mac Mini? I’m all set, Apple | Education IT |

“However, even iLife has its drawbacks in an educational setting. It simply hands so much to the students that they struggle with software (whether Windows, Linux, or even pro-level software on the Mac) that isn’t so brilliantly plug and play. Yes, iLife rocks in many ways, but the level of spoonfeeding it encourages actually makes me think twice about using it widely, especially at the high school level.”

What’s the issue here? That the software is so easy to use that people might come to think computers are useful? That they’ll be frustrated with software that sucks and complain?

(Also, to kvetch, the software doesn’t encourage spoonfeeding although it might encourage dependency…)