* Posts by Steve Foster

835 publicly visible posts • joined 10 Oct 2007

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Some smart meters won't be smart at all once 2/3G networks mothballed

Steve Foster

That's exactly how it's done. A comms hub is fitted as well as the smart meter. The hub is independently replaceable.

Supermium drags Google Chrome back in time to Windows XP, Vista, and 7

Steve Foster

A lot of kit provides management capability over HTTP(S). Being able to run a reasonably current browser to access that is preferable to using IE (hell, poking your own eyes out with a blunt pencil is preferable to using IE).

Watchdog calls for more plugs, less monopoly in EV charging network

Steve Foster

Re: Plug issues

There is a Dutch company, Muxsan, that specialise in retrofit upgrades for Nissan Leafs and the eNV-200 vans. They do battery replacements (either same size or bigger [for 1st/2nd gen models]), 2nd battery options, and a CCS upgrade (which means such vehicles can charge from either CCS or Chademo).

They're the only one out there that I've ever come across though (and the upgrades are not cheap).

However, it would be better if Nissan stepped up to the plate and did the right thing for their Leaf and eNV-200 owners at a reasonable price.

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: It is still not as simple as pulling up in a forecourt and filling up a tank

Lexus cars are not built here, and the UX series is probably one of the last models from Toyota where they were still in EV-denial and betting on hydrogen to get them out of their hybrid dead-end.

Besides, they'll only sell 6 anyway...

Steve Foster

Re: Does this include Tesla?

There are about 40 UK Supercharger locations that are now open to any CCS-equipped EV.

As Tesla add new locations and upgrade existing sites with their latest v4 chargers, more are switching from Tesla-only to fully-open.

Steve Foster

Re: Meh... Either way

Cable theft from rapid and ultra-rapid chargers is a problem, mainly in the north-west of England. Thieving sods are just hacking or chopping the cables off, rendering the chargers unusable. The cables are not live until an EV is plugged in, so unfortunately the scrotes are not at risk of electrocution.

Steve Foster

Re: It is still not as simple as pulling up in a forecourt and filling up a tank

It mostly is. CCS is the predominant connector, trailled by Chademo and proprietary connectors (early Tesla, mainly). Tesla and the USA are mucking about trying to establish a new standard there (NACS, I think it's called) for no obviously important reason (except perhaps N-I-H syndrome).

In the EU and UK at least, any new model launched today will have CCS.

All the CPOs are deploying CCS chargers now (some with Chademo as well, but in fewer and fewer numbers).

Japan complains Fukushima water release created terrifying Chinese Spam monster

Steve Foster
Joke

Trade Opportunity?

Some UK water companies have been complaining of lack of the stuff. Perhaps they should put in an offer to Japan to buy theirs?

Or maybe Japan should bottle the stuff and sell it as an energy drink!

Microsoft wants Activision so badly, it's handing streaming rights over to ... Ubisoft?

Steve Foster

@Wolfclaw

You have it back to front. MS can be forced to port, but Ubisoft have to pick up the tab for that.

Our AI habit is already changing the way we build datacenters

Steve Foster

Re: Cognitive dissonance

There are a lot more computers¹ than there are vehicles, and computing power consumption is routinely close to 24×7 while vehicle power consumption isn't (possibly equivalent to 8×7), so even if every vehicle on the planet went electric, I don't think total vehicle power consumption would ever reach that of computing.

Note that I didn't say *all* "AI" is a waste. But the likes of ChatGPT aren't genuinely doing anything constructive, are they?

¹ I suspect there's probably more computers than just about any other single electrical/electronic device there is, other than smartphones (though they are computers really).

Steve Foster
FAIL

Re: Cognitive dissonance

Charging a car at 56kW is a short-term activity (1hr tops), while a 15kW GPU in a DC will be running 24×7. So that 15kW GPU will use more electricity than the car on a daily basis, and of course, it's not just *one* 15kW GPU - it's an entire DC full of the things.

Even worse, a lot of this so-called "AI" computing appears to be just a huge waste of time and energy with no discernable useful output - unlike the car, which at least serves an obvious purpose in getting people from A->B (although that activity might be unnecessary).

UK government proposes legislation to regulate umbrella companies

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: Government creates red tape to fix IR35 mess of its own creation.

Sorting out the tax system to make all forms of paid work equal, thereby rendering IR35 obsolete, would be the better way to do things.

Then the umbrella companies disappear automatically, as they would serve no purpose.

Microsoft stumps loyal fans by making OneDrive handle Outlook attachments

Steve Foster

Re: Home auto-archive

You might want to look at Mail In a Box. Essentially a small set of scripts that wrap up postfix, dovecot, nextcloud and letsencrypt all together into a nice neat bundle.

https://mailinabox.email

IBM shrinks z16 and LinuxONE systems into standard rack configs

Steve Foster
Headmaster

Logic says 12u, since it *saves* 2/3 space (not occupies 2/3 space).

Biden: I want standard EV chargers made in America by 2024 – get on it

Steve Foster

Re: Good

It shouldn't, and the better charging networks do support contactless payment.

But "the modern way" is to shove everything into bloomin' smartphone apps, so that tends to be the default action now. This has superceded the previous "web first" idiocy, and will no doubt be followed in a few years by something else equally hair-brained.

If petrol forecourts were just being invented, they would be implemented along the same lines.

Steve Foster
Joke

Re: Reminds me of the Black Mirror episode Nosedive

"giant micro USB" - isn't that macro USB?

When ERP projects go bad: Surrey County Council's £30m ditch SAP effort delayed again

Steve Foster
Headmaster

Re: Runnymede

No, it isn't. It finally returned to Surrey this year when SCC moved into the former Canon offices in Reigate.

IIRC, they sold off the Kingston site for redevelopment.

MX Linux 21.2: Middleweight Debian-based distro is well worth a look

Steve Foster
FAIL

@Pirate Dave

Except that if you RTFA, it's not "systemd-free", it's "systemd-installed-but-unused".

US EV drivers won't be able to choose vehicle safety alert sounds

Steve Foster
WTF?

And pedestrians don't hear those! (or ignore them)

I've witnessed countless instances where pedestrians have walked through the path of a reversing van or lorry, seemingly completely unaware that the large, heavy vehicle with limited visibility that can easily crush them is even there.

Smart homes are hackable homes if not equipped with updated, supported tech

Steve Foster
Pirate

Re: Alternatives

And then your insurer refuses to pay out because there's no evidence of "forced entry".

Amazon stretches working life of its servers an extra year, for AWS and its own ops

Steve Foster
Joke

Re: AD Revenue

That breaks down as $65m to make the show, and $400m set aside for lawsuits when <insert allegations of your choice/ cancel culture retrospective sin of the month> happens due to the actions of the <male lead/ female lead/ non-binary lead/ director/ producer/ alec baldwin/ all of the above>.

Instant Ump: HP Inc's subscription ink services hiking prices from next month

Steve Foster
FAIL

"Cost for other plans is unchanged"

That's not the case for the "Light" plan, which is reduced to 10ppm from 15ppm. Sure, the monetary amount HPI are collecting remains the same, but the price per page is up by 50%.

Machine needs more Learning: Google Drive dings single-character files for copyright infringement

Steve Foster
Joke

Re: Well, that's one for the history books

... 10 for the show...

(binary joke)

Rolls-Royce consortium shopping for factory sites to build mini-nuclear reactors

Steve Foster
Mushroom

Re: Money for old rope

You think we're willing to start WW3 over Ukraine?

And if so, surely they could launch their missiles just as effectively from Faslane as they could from the Black Sea...

(obvious choice of icon!)

Steve Foster

Re: Money for old rope

"shipping container". I believe you've mistyped "submarine"...

Perhaps we should be looking at providing grid connection points at Faslane, so that the existing fleet of nuclear subs could be used to provide electricity to the grid.

New batch of AstroPis relieve Ed and Izzy of duty on board the International Space Station

Steve Foster

What will happen to Ed & Izzy?

I hope they're going to be looked after in their retirement, and not simply chucked away (or added to the next ISS garbage re-entry "burn").

Perhaps donation to TNMOC?

Time to party like it's 2002: Acura and Honda car clocks knocked back 20 years by bug

Steve Foster

Re: GPS week rollover

The only flaw in this otherwise wonderful (and informative) thought is that the GPS week rollover occurred in April 2019. Not at the end of 2021.

So, if Honda had screwed up dealing with the rollover, you'd have expected the reports to have begun back in 2019, not now.

Nationwide Building Society's Faster Payments turn into Slower Payments for 2022

Steve Foster
FAIL

3rd Incident

Note that this is the 3rd time in quick succession (1st just before Xmas, 2nd last week) that Nationwide has had processing delays with "faster" [sic] payments.

EDIT: AC just beat me to it...

India takes Amazon’s biggest local e-tail alliance out of its shopping cart

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: Incredible!

"P.S. Why hasn't the vulture got snow on its beak like it had in years gone past|?"

Global warming, obvs!

If you're not sold on the benefits of 5G, Ericsson suggests you keep an eye on gaming, home broadband

Steve Foster
Headmaster

Re: The Pope is a Catholic

Oh no, he isn't.

The guy in the vatican isn't actually "The Pope" (officially); and the guy who is "The Pope" (officially) isn't catholic. cf. Sandi Toksvig on QI:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RMf4OtC7SXY

Macmillan best-biscuit list unexpectedly promotes breakfast cereal to treat status

Steve Foster

Re: I am offended

"dead fly biscuits"

You do, of course, mean fruit shortcake, rather than the reprocessed cardboard named for the bald geezer.

Pi calculated to '62.8 trillion digits' with a pair of 32-core AMD Epyc chips, 1TB RAM, 510TB disk space

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: Random numbers

Except that they took considerably less time (and therefore probably less electricity) than the previous record holder.

The UK is running on empty when it comes to electric vehicle charging points

Steve Foster

"The figures I've seen show that just for light vehicles, charging would require that all the UK power stations run at full capacity 24/7."

And your cite is...? (he who lives by the "citation please" dies by the "citation please" <g>)

Steve Foster

Re: Some things that would help the situation

The Twizy has such a small battery that they fit it with a standard domestic plug. There are a few public charging points that offer 13A sockets, but they're going the way of the dodo.

There is a Type 2 to 13A socket adaptor available that lets it use a wider range of charge points.

Steve Foster

Re: Overcharging for Leccy

Ionity charge 69p/kWh for open access. It's deliberately priced so that almost no-one does, but lets them claim to be open "unlike Tesla" (though I keep coming across rumours that that may change).

If your car comes from one of the manufacturers in the Ionity consortium (BMW, Ford, Hyundai, Mercedes, VAG), you'll be able to get a much better rate.

The supermarkets with rapid chargers are about the cheapest - Lidl are at 25p/kWh, Tesco at 27p/kWh - and their slow chargers are usually free (I don't see that being sustainable!).

Steve Foster

That's exactly how I charge my car on long trips using rapid chargers at Rugby services, Toddington, Baldock, and a couple of others I've used.

At work, I just plug in (13A socket).

When shopping, I plug in (7kW charging point). If I do nothing else, it'll only give me a 15 minute charge and then stop, but if I use an App (ugh) or log in online, it'll charge for as long as I'm there.

In some places I shop, there's a rapid charger option which is then back to "plug in, tap to pay, do stuff, unplug" again.

Steve Foster

It's interesting watching the EV charging environment dynamically changing. I imagine it's not that dissimilar to how petrol forecourts developed in the post-war period as car ownership took off.

The crucial difference is that almost anywhere a car can be parked can potentially have some charging capability (even if it's only 3kW).

I suspect that eventually it'll be routine to plug cars in whenever they're parked, and that rapid chargers will be mainly used on long journeys.

Steve Foster

Re: Some things that would help the situation

1. "Type 2" connectors are pretty much universal for AC charging (generally for slow charging, but can support rapid charging at 43kW [for compatible combinations of charger and vehicle]). For rapid DC charging (50kW+), there are two main connectors - CCS (VHS!) and ChaDeMo (BetaMax!). CCS has essentially won this particular war (it helped that CCS is an extension to Type 2, so a single port covers all charging options).

2. The charge networks are rapidly moving towards contactless payment as the main method. It'll be interesting to see if their membership schemes (which usually give lower unit prices) survive.

3. They do (or is that what you were saying?).

Our Friends Electric: A pair of alternative options for getting around town

Steve Foster

Re: The door

"an early electric car (whose name escapes me)"

Assuming you're talking modern era, perhaps Renault's Twizy?

Where's the boss? Ah right, thorough deep-dive audit. On the boardroom table. Gotcha

Steve Foster
Joke

Re: Happened to me at my first job

"So I leave with six months pay (which really wasn't a lot)".

Well, you know what they say - every little helps.

Toyota reveals its work on an honest-to-goodness cloak of invisibility

Steve Foster
Joke

Re: I remember a SciFi book about this.

What's wrong with good ole-fashioned transparent aluminium?

UK government bows to pressure, agrees to delay NHS Digital grabbing the data of England's GP patients

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: Accidental naming coincidence

It's almost certainly not accidental. (cynical, moi? whatever gave you that idea?)

Steve Foster
Holmes

Re: GPDPR?

"We are a suspicious lot, aren't we?"

Suspicion born from experience.

Waymo self-driving robotaxi goes rogue with passenger inside, escapes support staff

Steve Foster
Joke

"A Waymo self-driving car...

...got stuck several times, held up traffic intermittently, and departed unexpectedly when assistance arrived"

Ah, well, at least this demonstrates that they've reached equivalence with a human cab driver!

Their 'next job could be in cyber': UK Cyber Security Council launches itself by pointing world+dog to domain it doesn't own

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: Looks like they are retraining

Well, they've got the whole foot in mouth thing down pat...

Missile systems software dev leaker has sentence almost doubled after UK.gov says 4½ years was too soft

Steve Foster
FAIL

Plausible Deniability

I guess he didn't use the hidden volume feature in VeraCrypt to protect against password disclosure.

Delayed, overbudget and broken. Of course Microsoft's finest would be found in NASA's Orion

Steve Foster
Facepalm

Re: Windows for Spaceships ?

I'd be happy to trust Lennart Poettering's life support to systemd...

Chrome release cycle accelerated to four-weekly frenzy

Steve Foster

Re: Desktop OS

The question that remains then is what's the 2nd-most prevalent OS shipped with new PCs...

Windows is assumed to be #1; you state ChromeOS is #3 and macOS #4. While I wish it was possible, I don't believe Linux can be #2, but what else is there? Or did you really mean that ChromeOS is now the 2nd-most [...] ahead of macOS?

Steve Foster

Re: Desktop OS

OSX was rebranded as macOS when they ran out of vaguely sensible 10.xx numbers for the annual updates.

UK's National Cyber Security Centre sidles in to help firm behind hacked NurseryCam product secure itself

Steve Foster
FAIL

"The same practice is also made in platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and GitHub"

Ah, the old "other people are doing it too" excuse.

I want to add "EPIC" to the icon!

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