SN 775: Tsunami

Beep boop - this is a robot. A new show has been posted to TWiT…

What are your thoughts about today’s show? We’d love to hear from you!

2 Likes

Partner tracking software, that is snuck onto a phone, without the owner’s knowledge and hides itself from them. Sorry Steve, that is very much the definition of malware in my book.

It is irrelevant, whether the software reports back to a criminal organisation or a “loved” one, in fact, I would say it is much worse that it reports back to a partner. That is a complete break of trust.

Child tracking? I can understand that, as long as the child can see the app is running and the parents/guardians explain why it is being used and exactly what it does.

Partner/spousal tracking? No way. That is malware, pure and simple. I’d never put anything like that on a device, and if I discovered that a partner had done that to me, they’d be up on charges and out of the door, quicker than you can say knife.

2 Likes

A prenup bypasses the need for spouse spyware! :laughing:

Tsunami sounds like a copy of openVAS at first glance.

Steve’s humorous attempt to reassign “bad sectors” to a more so called politically correct version ended with Leo’s silent wet blanket?

It wasn’t even vaguely funny, and @Leo knew better than to even acknowledge Steve’s gaffe.

I don’t like a lot of the “your speech is wrong” crowd (known derisively by some people as social justice warriors) but I still think it’s not wise to attract controversy when there is no benefit to be had. No one wants to “accidentally” step into a fracas or worse a boycott for no good reason… and certainly not over an attempt at humour that was ill considered.

1 Like

I found it interesting listening to Steve’s reasons for returning to YouTubeTV from SlingTV due to the functionality YouTubeTV provides with DVR. As Steve pointed out, he likes to circumvent the ads by fast forwarding over them and YouTubeTV provides thumbnails while fast forwarding that aide in precision frame control so he can return to the content of interest. AppleTV app Channel TWiT by Code Monkey Labs LLC provides similar functionality compared to the app TWiT on TV by If Then Dev, LLC which allows fast forwarding with thumbnail view however it bounces back to where you attempted the skip ahead.

The discussion about tracking apps made me wonder: How is a child-tracking app different from a spouse-tracking app? And what would prevent anyone from using the former to track their partner? I suppose I’m unable to see the distinction here.

However, to me, a tracking app would produce an alert every time a trace is being performed. Otherwise, it’s a spying app.

1 Like

I’ve never used child tracking apps, but I’d guess they are visible and you would never install one on a child’s phone without telling them what it is and what it does.

A spouse spying app is invisible to the phone user and is, in my opinion detestable.

1 Like

I hope this is the case. Otherwise, it would be so wrong.

What makes me wonder, however, is, when a child gets old enough to use a cell phone, aren’t they also at an age when it would be purely spying on them, which would be caused by the lack of trust?

I ran Tsunami on some of my networks and it did not find anything with the default modules. Has anyone else done any scans?

Please don’t mistake my silence for agreement.

I totally think replacing blacklist and whitelist with blocklist and allowlist not only removes the implicit insult to black people, it actually is more technically accurate.

Same with replacing master and slave (those are really reprehensible) with Host and Client. Again more communicative.

I think the Linux Kernel Community, Github, and others who are rooting out the unconscious, but still hurtful, language in our tech are doing the absolute right thing. And, as far as I know, Steve agrees.

3 Likes

I agree for the most part, but I still can’t get my head around blacklists. Traditionally a blacklist is a list of enemies/traitors (often a death list). The first documented blacklist I know of was a British king, Charles II, back in 1660 and the persons on the list were British noblemen. It has absolutely nothing to do with race or racism. The term can be traced back to Romans and earlier civilizations, where it was a list of enemies.

Likewise, black hat and white hat stemmed, as far as I know, from black and white films and was simply a method to allow film watchers to recognize and differentiate between the good guys and the bad guys at a distance / in a brawl.

There are lots of instances where the colours black and white have nothing to do with race or racism. I am all for removing things like slave, and master when used in combination with slave; although master has many uses, where it is not used with slave, so auto-banning master is also stupid - a master copy doesn’t have slave copies, just copies, for example.

When I was young, people used to say I was a gay child. Try telling a parent today that they have a gay child and you’ll be lucky to get away with only a black eye…

I find it sad, that people think, automatically, that the use of black in language is automatically racism, I find it even sadder that we live in a world where people have reason to think that way.

I agree that allow/deny lists is a better alternative to blacklist/whitelist (although blacklist/whitelist have become synonymous with allow/deny lists over the centuries), but not because the terms are racists, they are not, but because in the context they are used allow/deny is actually more descriptive and accurate. Most spamfilters, for example, don’t go around and actually kill the domains that are on the blacklist, more’s the pity.

I am all for banning racism and racist terms, but blindly lashing out at terms, just because they use the colour black (or the word master, for example), doesn’t actually help. It can actually turn people off the cause; they look at the banning of non-racist terms and think “WTF? What has that got to do with racism” and distance themselves from the cause.

I think we, as a society, are in a period, where we lash out at things without thinking, or we have the “mob brain” and we only think about our actions after the event. It is not healthy for society to simply lash out, it is self-destructive. Even if you are wronged, you should not hit back without thinking, as is so often the case - two wrongs don’t make a right. We need to come up with reasoned arguments and demonstrate our superiority over our aggressors, not in how hard we can hit back, but that we can rise above violence that we have right and reason on our side. Although that is difficult, when it is the so-called policemen (I am sure there are decent policemen as well as racists, just as there are in general society), a group that is supposed to be there to protect and serve us, that is a major part of the problem.

We need to find the Mahatma Ghandi or Martin Luther King Jr. of our generation, before our civilization disintegrates into complete chaos.

6 Likes

I couldn’t agree more.

I hadn’t even remotely thought of white or blacklists as being related to human race until it was brought up on the show a few weeks ago. Same applies to master/slave.

1 Like

Just because you’re not offended doesn’t mean it’s not offensive. When a better term exists, why not use it?

4 Likes

Obviously.

But that’s not what I meant. What I was trying to say was, the terms have no reference to the human race, not to mention racism. Blacklist was even used in the 17th century, as @big_D mentioned. No one means to offend anyone by using them.

However, I would disagree with the opinion that the new terms are a better option. A whitelist is actually an exception to a deny policy, so is a blacklist to an allow one.

1 Like

unfortunately, intent or the meaning of the thought of words are not considered very important these days. It seems as if they are used as more of a test of racism or wokeness. I remember about 20 years ago a group of college kids were protesting the use of the word picnic because it had some connection to racism in history…just found this: https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-factcheck-picnic-origin-lynchings/fact-check-the-word-picnic-does-not-originate-from-racist-lynchings-idUSKCN24E21V

@philbar unfortunately people mishear, misread or misremember words so confusion reigns.
There have been some unfortunate incidents where Paediatricians have been attacked and injured by ignorant vigilantes.


I agree that block and allow list makes common-sense and is in fact more accurately descriptive of what is being done, even though its origin is actually what is being done in a digital form.

The use of master with slave is a problem, but I also feel it is a shame that the actual descendants of those that word was derived from are being ignored in all this.
The Slavonic people were “most prized of human goods.”


However it is impossible to remove all references to master in IT, or millions of games cease to have an online connection, because this info is generally hardcoded and games which may never get updated.
Masterservers don’t have a master/slave relationship.
Servers and clients connect to a masterserver so they can find each other.
Future systems for new games and networks can easily adopt new naming.

Master is both a verb and a noun having many uses beyond being a status of dominance of people.
Most craftsmen wish to become a master craftsman, and maybe even one day a journeyman beyond peers.

The problem isn’t the existence of the words, it is the use or misuse of them where they don’t belong.
Often the use of euphemisms is the cause of concern, because people are simply using a word for something else when it does not apply.
It has not been very helpful for example when the USA insisted on really weirdly misusing the word faggot for homosexual.
In parts of the UK we still use the word in its real meaning (a bundle), and you can buy tins of meat balls which are a longstanding common brand called Braines Faggots. Where I live we use the word to describe a bundle of sticks or kindling-wood.
However the dominance of US culture means that other countries use of their own languages are becoming problematic, especially with automated censorship tools that have no concept of context.

Stop misusing words, say what you mean and mean what you say (a note for managers).

Lack of using a dictionary and only using a spellchecker is in my opinion going to create more of this language problem down the road.
Being a grammar pedant is a good thing. It helps us all to talk the same language and understand each other.

4 Likes

A racist term is only a racist term in the context of intent - I’ll leave it at that

3 Likes

There is nothing like faggots in gravy with chips from the chippy.

I used to smoke a fag afterwards a well. But I haven’t had a fag in over 30 ears. And no, I don’t mean a young boy who did my chores at school (I went to a secondary modern, so there weren’t any).

Edit: I can still remember Loretta Switt on the Terry Wogan show in the UK, talking about how sweet Harry S Morgan was and used to pat her on the fanny. Terry went very red and then had to explain to her what a fanny is in English…