Changes to Terminal Room Services at USENIX Conferences
At the last several USENIX and LISA conferences, one of the most
common complaints we've seen on the evaluations is that the terminal
room has no real terminals. In order to provide the best service
we can, we're making the following changes, effective April 1,
We will no longer use workstations and personal computers in
the conference terminal room. Instead, we will be going back to
teletype machines at 300 baud, connected to a secure mainframe back
at the USENIX offices in Berkeley, California. This not only makes
the room name accurate once more, but has the following advantages:
- Low cost. Teletypes cost very little to obtain and are
cheaper to replace than repair due to the large supply and low
demand of the units.
- Record keeping. Teletypes provide the history of your session
as well as who uses what hosts for how long.
- Secure connections. Because you can take the paper with you
when you go, there's no risk of someone seeing your session
when you've left. The direct connections prevent or discourage
sniffer attacks like the one seen at USENIX in 1997.
We will also be adding the following services to the terminal
- sshred. A secure shred service will be provided to
shred and destroy session logs if you don't want to keep them.
The shreddings will be recycled, so we're environmentally
- Firewall break-ins. Hackers will be available to hack through
your corporate firewall so you can read your email. (A nominal
fee will be required to use this service.)
- Face Saver. Although the signs may not have been for laughs
alone, that horrible shot of you certainly is. So we will be
providing a "delete your old face" service at the next LISA
conference. (A not-so-nominal fee will be required to use this
We hope these changes address any concerns you have about terminal
room service at the USENIX-sponsored conferences.
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