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Walking Thoughts

As I go for walks to think about solutions to various challenges at work, I let my mind wander. A few thoughts from the past few weeks of walks:

1. For SSH, always use a distinct, unique keypair (private and public) for every host. Never re-use keys. Rotate keys every year or so. Use PubkeyAuthentication, IdentitiesOnly, VerifyHostKeyDNS, and StrictHostKeyChecking all the time. Set Users in sshd_config so only specific users can login.

For further security, setup a VPN and configure sshd to listen only on the VPN interface.

2. If we want to convert to electric vehicles, the world cannot buy new EVs to replace every internal combustion engine (ICE). We need a plan to retrofit existing cars with EV motors and drivetrains. The Internet tells us there are around 289 million ICE-based vehicles in the US alone. While I'm sure the automobile manufacturers would love to sell 289 million new vehicles, what do we do with all the trades?  289 million used cars and trucks will overwhelm the entire recycling system, destroy the used vehicle markets, and likely just end up in landfills. I see two businesses here: first is the "crate motor" idea to retrofit existing vehicles with EV motors and battery packs; and the second is recycling the traded-in cars. 

3. Can we stop connecting everything to the Internet and making it a subscription? We've been doing this long enough that the second wave of Internet connected devices are now useless and trashed. The companies behind these devices/services are shutting down, so your 2-5 year old device is now useless. The auto industry is now catching on to this trend with subscriptions for basic options in cars, like heated seats, entertainment center functionality, backup camera, etc. Any car after 2013 should make the 4G cell modem optional, with hardware power switch. The car should work without all these Internet services. 

Also, for charging EVs, I just want to use my credit card and charge me for the electricity I used to charge the battery. I don't want a subscription. List the prices at the station for L1, L2, L3, etc. I'll decide how fast I want it charged and how much I'm willing to pay for that service. Gas stations don't have subscriptions. I shouldn't need an app, service, etc. 

4. Free software for cars as an alternative to whatever stuff comes with them now. As the car is considered obsolete, or the software doesn't work, or whatever happens to the builder, the cars are going to be sent to the junkyard. Maybe the cars core safety systems and powertrain can continue to run without manufacturer Internet connectivity. However, the entertainment systems and such should be replaceable with whatever the user wants to run. 

5. I finally found a good use for WebGPT, It's still experimental, nonetheless impressive. As always, question the results. At least it gives the sources with the results, so you can check the citations.

This article was updated on 2023/01/17 07:40:29