* Posts by Andrew Moore

1720 publicly visible posts • joined 2 Mar 2007

Twitter says hack of key staff led to celebrity, politician, biz account hijack mega-spree

Andrew Moore

Re: Ha bloody ha

I just gave them a number of an old telemetry SIM I had access to. Other than the initial verification code they don’t seem to use it. If they did, they’d be getting no answer from a data station in the middle of Ireland.

Cool IT support drones never look at explosions: Time to resolution for misbehaving mouse? Three seconds

Andrew Moore

Re: Mondarin?

It's a type of small orange isn't it?

So you really didn't touch the settings at all, huh? Well, this print-out from my secret backup says otherwise

Andrew Moore

Paper trails...

I once was hauled over the coals for “allowing” an engineer to go onsite with a piece of defective equipment that effectively lost over €10,000 in billable hours and a potential new customer. I was dragged in front of a “tribunal” of PHBs, the engineer, his boss and assorted other “people of importance”. I handed them each a copy of the email that everyone of them had been sent where I stated that the equipment was defunct and under NO CIRCUMSTANCES was it to be used in the field until it had been repaired, fully recalibrated and passed the rigorous test run.

Behold: The ghastly, preening, lesser-spotted Incredible Bullsh*tting Customer

Andrew Moore

Re: Contrary to popular belief, the customer is not always right.

I recently had the opportunity to fire an ex-client (I'd already fired them before). Got a text from them screaming that they were just about to board a flight to the Bahamas when it came to their attention that their payment gateway on their website wasn't working AND I HAVE TO FIX IT NOW!!! I completely ignored it as I knew the payment gateway had recently changed their terms and conditions and the ex-client had obviously ignored any emails asking them to accept the new T&Cs.

Andrew Moore

Re: There should be an IT Driving Test

My company once sent me on a train course to learn the basics of a piece of software that I had been using for over 10 years- On the first morning the instructor said that she didn't know why I was there because I knew more about the system than she did. On the plus side, the new head of the division was on the course too (he was one of those strange managers that thought it would be a good idea to have an understanding of the area he had just been put in charge of) and we forge a strong friendship in the after-hours eating and drinking.

We beg, implore and beseech thee. Stop reusing the same damn password everywhere

Andrew Moore

Re: If you don't ..

A good trick is to use the same password but different usernames

Andrew Moore

Re: In other news....

Earlier today I have up registering an account (for a software service) because it

a) demanded a complex password (>10 characters, digits symbols upper and lowercase)

b) my browser let me store the password but the site spoofed the browser so it would not offer the password

c) did not allow me to paste the password

We're in a timeline where Dettol maker has to beg folks not to inject cleaning fluid into their veins. Thanks, Trump

Andrew Moore

A little embarrassing- he's actually admitted to say it but trying to shrug it off as being "sarcastic",

A paper clip, a spool of phone wire and a recalcitrant RS-232 line: Going MacGyver in the wonderful world of hotel IT

Andrew Moore

Re: Remember serial breakout boxes?

I know where mine went- if was "borrowed" by slaesdroid who took it to a client site and left it there. After a year of me consitently badgering the 'droid for the return of the box, I was taken to one side by the boss and told to drop the issue. I responded by buying a deluxe breakout box and billing it to the company.

Andrew Moore

Many years ago I needed to get an RS232 connection from the basement to the 1st floor of the office I was working in. At the time there was a mass of twisted pair cables that ran around the building, used to hook all the phones up. I was able to isolate a couple of unused pairs and hooked up the RX, TX and GND. The hack worked a charm and the data flowed.

Fast forward 3 months. The workers came into the office one Monday morning to find that the phone system was not working. Going on the fact that I was the last person "messing" with the system, the boss decided that my hack was responsible for the failure (bear in mind it had been working fine for 3 months). So I set about unwiring my makeshift RS232 cable. And surprise, surprise, it failed to make any difference. The non-working phone system remained non-working. So finally the boss had to bite the bullet and call in a proper phone engineer to sort the problem out. It took another day but the phones started working again. And nothing more was said.

But here's the thing, I knew the phone engineer outside of the office and we ended up bumping into each other later that year and decided to go for a pint. I asked him about the phone job and he laughed- Apparently, the boss had decided to change the carpet in his office. So he decided to do it on the cheap and he and his father-in-law had come in on the Saturday, pulled out the old carpet and replaced it. The fault with the phones? They'd used a stapler to fix the carpet and managed to put a staple through the phone lines. Not once, but many times.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, health secretary Matt Hancock both test positive for COVID-19 coronavirus

Andrew Moore

Brexit Bus...

I bet he's wishing that he'd sent that £350 million a week to the NHS now... (only kidding- there's no way he'll see the inside of a public hospital)

Supply, demand and a scary mountain of debt: The challenges facing IT as COVID-19 grips the global economy

Andrew Moore

Meanwhile, in Ireland...

...my design cycle has sped up immensely as my clients are all now at home with nothing better to do than run test cases on the project I'm working on.

Not exactly the kind of housekeeping you want when it means the hotel's server uptime is scrubbed clean

Andrew Moore

Re: The cleaner did it.

I've posted this here before, but once in the 90s I got a phone call from a screaming client who demanded I get on-site now and threatening all sorts of legal retribution for work lost, downtime etc, etc, etc. So I drove the 3 hours to the site, walked up to the room had housed the computer and plugged it back into the wall. The shouty customer then got very quiet and begged me not to bill for my time or let head office become aware of what had happened.

BOFH: Here he comes, all wide-eyed with the boundless optimism of youth. He is me, 30 years ago... what to do?

Andrew Moore

"Do I preach about the shift from selling a software product to leasing it so as to convert the client into a revenue stream with no added value?"

DO I hate this one. Worse than "no added value" is where the company rinsing you for extra cash feel obligated to load every bell and whistle into the software, just to make it look like you are getting some return on your investment. And you end up with an over-bloated, slow as crap, feature defaced, useless piece of shit.

Maersk prepares to lay off the Maidenhead staffers who rescued it from NotPetya super-pwnage

Andrew Moore

Yes, there's a particular level in management where failure is rewarded- and rewarded well. The trick is to make the failure profitable to shareholders. You can drive a long existing well regarded company into the ground as long as it makes a profit for the shareholders. This trait also makes the perpetrators highly desirable as shareholders of other companies look for you to do the same.

If you're writing code in Python, JavaScript, Java and PHP, relax. The hot trendy languages are still miles behind, this survey says

Andrew Moore


"Maybe COBOL developers don't go to StackOverflow the minute they have a problem"

I think that's because their computers lack internet access... IPv4... graphical displays...

Andrew Moore

Assembly??? Pffffffft- that's what people who can't do Machine Code use...

BOFH: Gosh, IPv5? Why didn't I think of that? Say, how do you like the new windows in here? Take a look. Closer...

Andrew Moore

Re: "Extra internets for knowing what a EDM is"

Electronic Distance Measurement

I heard somebody say: Burn baby, burn – server inferno!

Andrew Moore

Re: Boss Fail

I would have backed up the servers and run them soooooo hot. One thing a FD doe not like is unexpected bills for replacement equipment, and breakdowns of losses due to critical systems being offline.

C'mon SPARCky, it's just an admin utility update. What could possibly go wrong?

Andrew Moore

Re: As usual ...

Only ever did it once. After that, I just move the files to a temporary folder and if everything still appeared to work, delete the temporary folder after a couple of days.

Beware the Friday afternoon 'Could you just..?' from the muppet who wants to come between you and your beer

Andrew Moore

Re: Never again

I had something similar- ended up spending 4 hours removing viruses and then went and asked if there was anything to eat (I was starving). They looked at each other sheepishly and then corked the remains of a bottle of red wine and handed it to me. I left it on their doorstep.

The delights of on-site working – sun, sea and... WordPad wrangling?

Andrew Moore

Re: How did that work ?

I remember doing something similar, though I just replaced the verification code with a string of NOP instructions.

Andrew Moore

Re: How did that work ?

XTreeGold used to be my hex editor of choice- Even once everyone started moving to Windows, I'd still fire up a DOS box to use it.

Sometimes shining a light on a nuclear problem just makes things worse

Andrew Moore

Re: Pete and Dud?

Or since auntie Mabel had that unfortunate accident with the mangle...

Stack Overflow makes peace with ousted moderator, wants to start New Year with 2020 vision on codes of conduct

Andrew Moore

Re: They

Yes, they didn't use her pronoun and therefore were in violation of their own CoC...

Beware the trainee with time on his hands and an Acorn manual on his desk

Andrew Moore

Re: Sending messages

I think the Tektronics displays used to do that.

What is this, 1989? Laplink is still a thing and wants to help with Windows 7 migrations

Andrew Moore

Re: Cables, CDs?

Man, I loved XtreeGold

We read the Brexit copyright notices so you don't have to… No more IP freely, ta very much

Andrew Moore

Re: Red tape

"NI businesses will have to submit customs "exit" forms for goods shipped to the UK."

That's only bad for the DUP, which means it's good for everyone else.

Andrew Moore

Re: Bonfire

My Irish passport arrived last week, so I'm safe.

Guess who's dreaming of facial-recog body cams now? US border cops: AI tech sought to scrutinize travelers

Andrew Moore

between 1985 and 2000 I visited the states over 30 times, both for business and pleasure. But after Bush's election and 9/11 I haven't been back since. Visited Canada a few times since then though.

Junior minister says gov.UK considering facial recognition to verify age of p0rn-watchers

Andrew Moore

Then what they do is bring in a law making it illegal not to be a moron.

Andrew Moore

Re: Surely...

The best is where they keep repeating "blockchain" but you know what they really mean is "cryptocurrency"

Andrew Moore


...they can implement this using AI and Blockchain...

YouTube thinkfluencer Siraj Raval admits he plagiarized boffins' neural qubit papers – as ESA axes his workshop

Andrew Moore

Re: Thinkfluencer

I think effluencer would be a more appropriate term

Tearoff of Nottingham: University to lose chunk of IT dept to outsourcing

Andrew Moore

Re: RE: And this means

"On the day we finally turned out the lights, we received a huge email stating the "most urgent" issues that remained unresolved."


However, I would have been sorely tempted in replying "Oh, you are so fucked..."

Andrew Moore

Re: Been through this myself.

Not surprising that KPMG are still banging the outsourcing drum, well after it's been proven to be as effective as a very ineffective thing.

I think the only way to defeat KPMG is to trick them into outsourcing themselves.

You've got (Ginni's) mail! Judge orders IBM to cough up CEO, execs' internal memos in age-discrim legal battle

Andrew Moore

Re: It's not over till we say it's over

Yep, exactly what I thought- because IBM are going to decide what "final" means in this situation.

Are you a Nim-by? C-ish language, gentler than Go, friendlier than Rust, reaches version 1.0

Andrew Moore

Yup, indentation for grouping is a hard pass from me. Any language that can be broken just by switching text editor is not fit for purpose.

That time Windows got blindsided by a ball of plasma, 150 million kilometres away

Andrew Moore

Re: Yep, Same Here

God, I remember those. And the caddies that you had to put CDs in before inserting them into the CD reader. Once users realised that you could play regular CDs on the Sparcstations, those bloody caddies were like gold dust. Many was the time I'd come back from a break during a Solaris upgrade to find that someone had ejected and nicked the caddy while I was away.

Andrew Moore

Re: Not Just Mice

Que traumatic flashbacks of working with Nokia phones and their serial and IR "protocols".

Two years ago, 123-Reg and NamesCo decided to register millions of .uk domains for customers without asking them. They just got the renewal reminders...

Andrew Moore

My tuppence...

Not only do not pay for the .uk domains, but bring in rules which bar the registrars from offering them to third parties...

Magnetic cockroaches, dirty money, wombat poo and posties' balls: It's the Ig Nobels 2019

Andrew Moore

Re: 10 trillion (Zimbabwean) dollars

Also, those notes have a "Use Before" date on them so the winners will need to cash them in very quickly (which, I think, involves a trip to Zim as no ForEx will touch them with a barge-pole)

In Hemel Hempstead, cycling is as bad as taking a leak in the middle of the street

Andrew Moore

I don't know about this particular stretch, but usually, if I'm not using a cycle lane it's because the lane is too dangerous to use. This could be due to motorists using it for parking; pedestrians wandering onto it due to insufficient/obvious segregation; or the surface is in bad condition; or a combination of all three. Although the one that most motorists can't get their head around is when I'm maneuvering to turn right (and signaling).

Andrew Moore

Re: At werdsmith.

This. Also, point the stick at their heads as they cycle towards you, the inference being that they're perfectly entitle to impale themselves if they wish.

[I'm a cyclist but I'm fed up with the bad name that all cyclists get because of this small minority of cretins]

The time a Commodore CDTV disc proved its worth as something other than a coaster

Andrew Moore


"Latest and greatest Ameol client"

Hahahahaha. I still have it installed on an old PC somewhere...

Maltese browser game biz flings €1m sueball at Google over Adsense kerfuffle

Andrew Moore

It would be hilarious if Google gave the ad money to htmlgames instead...

Army Watchkeeper drone flopped into tree because crew were gazing backwards

Andrew Moore

Re: Remove the humans from the loop

She took the soup so she's only Ms Conner now...

Andrew Moore

Re: Starglider was better!

They can do software, they just can't do UI (from my 20+ years experience)

Female-free speaker list causes PHP show to collapse when diversity-oriented devs jump ship

Andrew Moore

Back a couple of years ago I was judging at a beer competition. The breakdown was 19 male judges, 1 female judge. But this was after many female judges had been invited but those that bothered to reply, declined.

Anyway, day of the judging and we've all finished and our lady judge wants a picture of the lot of us. Which she takes and posts online. The first comment was "that's a very male heavy lineup". From a woman who had been invited to judge but hadn't even replied.

I couldn't possibly tell you the computer's ID over the phone, I've been on A Course™

Andrew Moore

Re: This is this bank

My bank always used to say that they would not ring me for any reason- it popped up everytime I logged into the the online portal, and was printed in bold at the bottom of every statement. Until, one day, they did. I drove the caller up the wall by repeatedly pointing out that the bank does not ring anyone for any reason; and when she told me that this was an exception, I kept asking who was lying, her or the warnings on the website and printed statements.