* Posts by John Saunders

25 publicly visible posts • joined 5 Nov 2007

Boffins: Bebo interstellar spam aliens don't exist after all

John Saunders

I 3rd that sentiment.

Awe struck indeed. Lewis: if you're not contemplating a book please start.

iSCSI: Game over

John Saunders

Piling on

FC security features like zoning, LUN presentation, etc. happen at the media layer, and are useful enough that enterprise customers are unlikely to abandon them. FC or FCoE vs iSCSI is a non-issue in that realm.

The iSCSI security model *is* a simpler and cheaper alternative to FC at the media layer and arguably at the administrative level , particularly for SMEs. The bogus argument that FC complexity "goes away" with FCoE actually supports iSCSI, if reduced complexity is desirable.

FCoE can't be FC unless the complexities are present, which they are in the special host Ethernet adapters and hardware in Ethernet switches required to do FCoE (so much for reduced expenses), and the FC management issues are the same over copper or glass ( so much for "no FC skills in the data centre").

So what FC complexity goes away due to FCoE, then? Not having to run fiber during a transition from iSCSI to FC? Er, no. Just run more Ethernet. Can a cost argument be made for that that has comparable weight to the relative merits of FC vs iSCSI management and security? Only for a few customers, seems to me.

The speed argument has some transient validity. The complexity issue is ... salesmanship?

Deutsche Post axes massive HP services deal

John Saunders

Conway's Law and IT outsourcing

Any number of reasons are given, including financial advantages, for outsourcing. The speciousness of those reasons have fueled incredulous comment here and elsewhere for as long as outsourcing has been a subject.

IT outsourcing, simply put, is getting rid of IT, and replacing IT with a contract.

Why would management want to be rid of IT?

Conway's Law can be stated as "IT's products reflect the organizational structure that produced them.". That structure must include the larger organization in which the IT function is embedded.

As food for thought, I offer that IT's products, distorted by organizational dysfunction, as well as IT's attempts to overcome the dysfunction, exist as a continuous source of reflected shame and frustration of fantasy fulfillment for management. Should this shame grow too discomforting, getting rid of the shaming object is the obvious response.

Replacing IT with a contract, "running IT like a business", removes IT as an obstacle to expression of dysfunction, which could be an explanation for why nutty contract terms appeal to management seeking outsourcing. The financial rationalizations provide cover, permitting management to avoid mentioning or even being conscious of the shame driving and the hostile nature of the act of outsourcing.

While it seems possible that an IT organization could be beyond redemption, and hence that outsourcing might be the lesser of evils, that state will have been reached within the larger organization, and the above still applies.

Seems as though the only sensible reasons for outsourcing have to do with the inurement of the officers of the involved companies, the consequences of which Mr. Miller has noted above.

My pop psychology concoction is challenged by the DP/HP outcome, assuming that outcome isn't simply a sign of a continuation of negotiations, as hinted at in other comments.

Naturally, I won't give up on my creation without a struggle, so I'll leave off with some smoke-screen questions. :-)

What was the nature of the 'reorganization'? Was it limited to IT? Was IT 'punished' with headcount reduction, which reduced the financial cover, along with providing an outlet for hostility? Why were the numbers re-checked after the relationship was substantially in place? Political intrigue?

Sigh. If we only knew. Perhaps some intrepid IT reporters will dig further.

Poker-faced Ballmer explains Google beating plans

John Saunders

Matching the pot?

Google's R&D spend for 2007? The first number I found was $2.1B.

Balmer proposes (an increase, we can infer) $1.2 to $1.5B to "remain competitive"?

If I played poker I'd invite Steve *and* the analysts over for a friendly game.

American data pimper exposes ad equation

John Saunders

Vehicle vs Payload

It's easy to get distracted by the very real privacy concerns that Phorm, NebuAd, FISA ad nausem present. Similarly, it will be easy to doze when these privacy concerns are "addressed" by some perhaps well-meaning but certainly exposure-seeking Congresscritter.

The real danger is the establishment of the permissibility of collection mechanisms, rather than the immediate abuse toward which a particular mechanism is applied, though that immediate abuse is dangerous enough.

Recall the story of the bicycle smuggler. Collection mechanisms and their acceptability (bicycles) are what's being smuggled into the infrastructure while the vendors' rather narrow privacy abuses (smuggler) are what the Congresscritters, the press et. al. (border guard) are distracted by.

Lenovo stock falls as IBM retreats

John Saunders

T'was ever thus

Interesting commentary in the facts that Lenovo, in spite of being saddled with IBM's money-losing operation, though, granted, with the respected Thinkpad brand, has doubled its stock price, allowing IBM to benefit yet again from its own ineptitude.

So why couldn't IBM do what Lenovo has done with the same product?

Tux just 'cuz.

HP VP charged for trying to pass on IBM trade secrets

John Saunders

Doofus redux

All too familiar with the 'SOP' arguments concerning violations of trust. The pervasiveness of this sort of behavior leading to a grudging acceptance of it or even suggestion for its necessity for good business is a topic too broad for this forum.

The doofus label goes more to the exec's sending of the material to other execs using email, for which sort of actor I have been at a loss to find any other suitable descriptive term.

Unaware of the incriminating trail he was leaving? - doofus

or indifferent to the same? - two sets of rules, leading perhaps to

Expecting the other execs to accept incrimination also by receiving the material? - doofus

The last being the the IBM culture question.

Finally, for the business-world weary, there's nothing in this story (yet) to say that HP doesn't still have the 'trade secrets', the show of purging the VP notwithstanding.

John Saunders

Two sets of rules

Of course the doofus was shown and signed to abide by the HP code of conduct as a condition of employment, so it's hard to imagine this was the first time he'd engaged in such shenanigans during his illustrious career.

IBM was lucky to be rid of him, and now HP too. But how was he allowed to develop this pernicious habit at IBM? Hmm ... .

Schoolboy's asteroid-strike sums are wrong

John Saunders
Black Helicopters

Something missing here ...

Nary a single snide remark about how the 1 in 450 headline would sell a lot more newspapers than 1 in 45,000. What's the matter with you people? Or is this the mark of the sinister hand of the editor at work?

FCC builds giant text spam engine for terror warnings

John Saunders
Black Helicopters

Shades of Max Headroom ...

the dystopian future TV series in which it was illegal to have a TV with an off swiitch. Under what pretext would such a law be brought into being? Important national security information from your government, perhaps? After a while, what was annoying would become expected, then finally manditory.

After a few years, an argument could be made that some large proportion of the population, patriotic citizens, are accepting the messages without complaint, and therefore why shouldn't you (In Max Headroom, the important messages were advertising, critical to the national interest, but that detail was topical social commentary.)?

Hence, in this real world case, the requirement for the target to have to 'opt out', to actively resist the intentions of the security state.

This goofy idea likely won't fly, but it won't be because of the charge to the citizen for the text message.

Microsoft meths up data center with 220 containers

John Saunders

Datacenter Container-ment

Hey. The title just came to me, ok? Feel free to use it if you like. :-)

As a practice, datacenters and their contents move infrequently. Shipping containers are designed to move, and, particularly in the case of the WTDC, be impervious to an exterior environment.

So the containers in question hopefully will be more in alignment with the requirements for a building interior and a non-vagabond existence, offering modular containment of computing equipment environmentals. The supposition is that by not conditioning the entire building space, but rather just the space close to the computing gear, efficiency and effectiveness is improved. Did MS miss an opportunity to mention the 'green' angle? Looks like it.

This odd project does offer the opportunity to contrast the two modes of operation right there in the same building. Odd, because you certainly don't need to build a traditional data center to contrast with. There are plenty of those already. And if the first floor represents the known good future, and the second floor the known obsolete past, MS is spending money on it because ... ?

The Baying of the Hounds

John Saunders

Continuing education for sniffer dogs

And the dogs, bred and selected for compliance, seeking approval and praise, won't ever pick up on subconcious (or concious) queues from their handlers about the 'correct' persons to finger, er ... nose?

The observation that the police might be training the dogs to concentrate on black people (or other police outgroup of choice) takes a different meaning if the training is unconcious (to the officer) but obvious to the target.

Royalties are the admission price, Microsoft tells freetards

John Saunders
Gates Horns

M$ patents and 'IP' are weapons

M$ doesn't want to publish what the supposed violations are. That's in keeping with their playing the viral angle in reverse with their most recent 'Open' efforts to infect FOSS with their 'intellectual property'. Expect a 'revelation' from M$ only when legal action will be very painful to the enemy.

Ticked-off former Motorola 'insider' gives his two cents

John Saunders

Even when they try they get it wrong

Called the benefits 800 number of a large US telco yesterday. After the call there was a short automated survey, all about the behavior of the 'representative' (who actually was very nice) lousy with management claptrap like 'sense of urgency', and nothing I can recall about whether or not I was actually served. At the end was an opportunity to record a comment. I was cut off mid-sentence after no more than 10 seconds.

My remarks were complimentary to the representative. Any momentary positive feelings about V****** (oops) benefits operation I had were instantly vaporized (again).

Verizon makes nice with P2P

John Saunders
Paris Hilton

Verizon needs help with P2P?

"Making nice" would hardly be in the spirit of the telcos' recent attempts to extract revenue from content providers like Google, etc., nor would it be an appetizing end result of spending 10s of billions of dollars on FIOS, which is all about charging extra for 'premium' content.

I speculate that this group's product will be an approved (and meterable) P2P client and network protocol (this is where the 'P2P suppliers' come in) and a plan (with TOS as the core) to steer a large proportion of the customer base to that client.

This effort may fail, but the possibility of reaching the two goals of extracting money from the customer *and* charging the content provider (who is the customer in this scenario) in one slick move may be too alluring to resist.

Paris, who knows how to not resist temptation.

AT&T and Verizon thrash rivals with $16bn spectrum swipe

John Saunders

"Open" C Block

Verizon and friends have managed to undo many of the positive effects of the telecom act of 1996. As Telebusillis says, the purchase will prevent the open block from being meaningfully used. Considering the money Verizon has spent laying fiber and getting screwy court decisions just to escape regulation, the "Open" C block may disappoint.

The differences in bids is interesting. One wonders now why Google bothered. I was looking forward to them causing trouble.

'Freetard ? more like advert programmed PAYTARDS!'

John Saunders

FoTW, where are ye now?

The BootNote resolved my puzzlement, since as flames go, the letter was, well ... .

It's a shame that 'FoTW' has to be repurposed just to get some use out of it. What's happened to the Internet I used to know?

Comcast pays Americans to oppose net neutrality

John Saunders

Network traffic management - Democratic process management

Expected to see a well-reasoned and sensible argument for this latest effort to better serve the customer, rather as we have seen before from the Comcast apologists. Don't disappoint, now, boys!

BT pimped customer web data to advertisers last summer

John Saunders

HTML injection

This should be obvious with 'View Source' or moral equivalent and 'Find in Document' for dns.sysip.net . Soon I expect some Firefox/Greasemonkey expert to devise a small Greasemonkey script to remove the offending code. Too bad for IE users. :-)

This is simply a man in the middle attack. Were this perpetrated by a hacker, it would be a crime. Perpetrated by two corporations, it's good business. Hmm.

Microsoft opens APIs and protocols to all

John Saunders

Ride the tiger - slight return

Jeremy Allison - "Doesn't mean any change for us (Samba) as we already had all these docs ...". Bitten by the tiger? Were some of these docs part of what the Samba team got to see a just a few months ago in trade for concessions (whatever those may have been) that would now be unnecessary? Hope not.

30,000 pages of documents - the Deluge Ploy as occasionally practiced by our beloved US govt in response to FOIA reqests, the search for possible value being stymied by the Herculean task of sifting through the mountain of documentation?

Boon to malware creators - see above. Further, anyone who wants to make malware can be fully occupied with the already thoroughly mapped terrain of M$ products, with new opportunities appearing every Patch Tuesday, if not before, without source code or documentation available.

Claimed ignorance foils Economist domain case

John Saunders

Conspicuous (to some) by absence

Nothing on the negotiations that surely must have preceded this laughable outcome? Ah, yes. Economists. That explains it. I feel better already about having missed the opportunity to get a subscription.

Ballmer! explains! hostile! Yahoo! bid!

John Saunders

How long can they tread water?

Two tired swimmers (see their stock price declines since the last offer to buy), eyeing each other as potential floation devices?

The orange one with the kapok filler, thanks.

EU data ruling slaps filesharers with red herring

John Saunders

truespeak - newspeak

'swivel chair revolutionaries' and 'consume creativity online' in one paragraph. A feast of locution!

How and why MySQL grabbed $1bn in five weeks

John Saunders

Where's the value?

If you can get MySQL support as part of a Sun Support contract, then the danger MySQL represents, in the minds of IT support, is reduced considerably.

Some measure of the 'renegade' LAMP projects in an organization can now migrate from 'low-tier' hardware and software to 'upper-tier' stuff, since IT won't be actively repelling them. Sun thus recaptures some sales lost to 'free' products.

Further, some latent demand that up to now has been unmet due to fear of the perceived support downside of LAMP is freed, generating new requirements for 'official' IT services.

Pretty obvious. Whether there's $1Billion of value remains to be seen of course.

The 'Web Economy'? Well, it's much more pleasant to talk of such things rather than the insecurity of IT support in the enterprise.

The software as a service angle only makes sense if Sun's future 'cloud' can't use the 'free' dbms, Postgres, that they already have packaged, or that Sun's license fees to MySQL AB would have exceeded some good fraction of the purchase price, neither of which seems sensible.

Tux, because LAMP has been and will continue to be an essential component of the expanded market in which Sun's purchase of MySQL AB otherwise wouldn't have occurred.

Google's gives the world (another) Linux phone OS

John Saunders

Google - the next dot.

Hmm. First, Google head-fakes to get the FCC to apply Net Neutrality to the soon to be auctioned radio spectrum, making it unpalatable to the short-term minded telcos. Next, they develop a 'phone OS, then set it loose for polishing via the FOSS crowd. What could they be thinking of doing next?