* Posts by Jez Lawrence

18 publicly visible posts • joined 14 Nov 2007

'Hey, Elon? You broke it, you bought it' says owner of SpaceX's satellite cinder

Jez Lawrence

Re: It's an act of sabotage, who pays for that?

Don't come here with your la-de-dah logic. Honestly. What kind of el reg commentard are you?!


(FWIW I concur about the 'mysterious object'. Perspective is tricksy)

Jez Lawrence

anyone play shadowrun?


Because never mind "Aliens" (as some conspiracy nuts have latched onto) this has all the hallmarks of an industrial or state-sponsored run:

Chinese company wants to buy Israeli space company.

Predicate this purchase on a successful launch.

Mysterious object seen nearby at same time as mysterious "during fuelling" anomaly event causes the thing to blow up.

Launch fails.

40% (40%!) wiped off Israeli company's share value, SpaceX, basically the world's current premiere private launch company, once again have their momentum slowed.



I'm not saying these types of things *can't* happen by accident. I'm just saying there are about 250 million good reasons for someone to take out the launchcraft. Keep your eye on Spacecom share sales, because if this *was* a run, they would be snapped up by various "entirely unconnected" organisations/companies that aren't anything like as unconnected as the public paper trail might suggest, who would at the very least proxy the shares into the hands of a single representative agent.

Of course, if I'm right, I'll probably also be dead in about 24 hours. /sigh. I should keep my mouth shut really.

HP slaps dress code on R&D geeks: Bin that T-shirt, put on this tie

Jez Lawrence

Fucking bollocks

That is all.

I'M SO SORRY, sobs Rosetta Brit boffin in 'sexist' sexy shirt storm

Jez Lawrence

Bad choice of print not style. And only in a non-media-savvy way at that.

The man's a god.

I really hope his confidence stands up to 1st world internet trolls with absolutely zero sense of perspective about what humanity just acheived.

Horizon finds new potential in the sci-fi staple deepsleep tale

Jez Lawrence

Steven Baxter's "titan" dealt with this amazingly realistically. Except deep sleep want involved and the astronauts didn't come home...

I mean fundamentally its the same issue as those coming hone from ww1 & 2 faced isn't it?

Google Glassholes haven't achieved 'social acceptance' - report

Jez Lawrence

Till they can replace my mk 1 eyeball with gibson-esque Zeiss lenses complete with hud and Thermo vision... I'm not interested.

DreamWorks CEO: Movie downloaders should pay by screen size

Jez Lawrence

Im not pimping. I just can't be arsed to write it all again so here's my thought on a workable model I wrote up a while back. /Meh. Read it or don't, no one else has lol.


Pirates scoff at games dev sim's in-game piracy lesson

Jez Lawrence

Re: "an experiment in education of pirates"

Here's a counter-counterpoint - you can't play minecraft without an account, which you can't create without buying a license, because you have to activate it.

That right there is DRM. It's just not a software version of it.

Whatever happened to telepresence? From $2.5m deals to free iPad apps

Jez Lawrence

Re: Cisco is the problem, Skype is good enough

Er, Skype is NOT fully integrated in Lync 2013 from June. VOICE integration will be present (and possibly only one way e.g. from lync to skype but not the other way around), and video will come 'within the next 18 months' after that.

But the point is valid - MS are integrating them as we all knew they would. Can't come soon enough for me so we can finally shut up all those people saying 'but I must have skype, all the people I deal with use Skype!'

The main thrust of the article is the key one - all these proprietary systems are basically responsible for holding back the dissemination of the technology. Integration is the key, so while I may be a webex fanboi, in this case I really appreciate MS's efforts to move to HTML5 and leverage open standards and their existing products. Cisco are being very silly indeed by not joining the club.

Jez Lawrence

Re: Cisco is the problem, Skype is good enough

Since before the MS takeover, Skype have done a Skype-for-business offer (roughly £10/month per host license I beleive, I'm sure bulk discounts can be arranged) whereby you can stop the creation of supernodes and control other aspects of it's delivery and operation in an Enterprise environment.

Personally I'm more a fan of webex with it's delicious bandwidth scaling and uber functionality than I am of Skype's rather feeble efforts, but the consumerisation of IT means that users only know about Skype so that's what they want. As soon as you say 'ok, if you pay for the staff costs in administration, control and monitoring, and are willing to pay for a massively increased corporate internet connection to cope with the chunky bandwidth usage... they soon shut up. Well. That particular customer does. Then you have to have the same conversation with other customers every other week.

If your customers are pestering for free Skype and you don't already have something to offer them that IS suitable, I'd advise you to prep a stock email about the real options available to them. and then suggest they try webex who now offer a free up-to-three-in-a-conference version of Webex Meetings with more or less the same functionality as the full £30/month version which may well do the trick for quite a lot of business areas considering using VC tech for mobile collaborative teamworking rather than full 'conferencing'. Plus it's proxy aware, comparitively bandwidth light and really very secure. The client can be activeX or Java-called so doesn't cause much in the way of deployment issues, plus it has a simple toolbar integration with Office and outlook and some other stuff if you choose to allow users to install it.

If only the 'full' version wasn't so expensive, it'd be perfect (£30 per host per month + call charges? Come ON Cisco, you're pricing yourselves out of the market, no wonder enterprise customers - including us, now who've been investigating and trialling a wider webex deployment - are using or considering using lync!)

Ever had to register to buy online - and been PELTED with SPAM?

Jez Lawrence

yes. Spam sucks.

I sympathise with the author of the article though I'm struggling to see the point of it - this is not a new problem, nor is it news that opt out lists are no such thing. You're not even venturing an opinion as to what should be done about it. But if you just wanted to have a moan though, mission accomplished and fair enough - one of the perks of being an interwebz scumba-er, journalist I suppose. Moaning to nerds that spam is annoying is however a bit like calling up the westboro baptist church to tell them God Hates Fags - you're guaranteed a good reception but you're not exactly challenging their world view...

Me, I just use my very first ever webmail address, which was created back in the mid nineties before spam filters and things were truly available/functional. The spam became totally overwhelming by the end of the decade and I stopped using it for communicating with actual people. Instead I hit on the idea of just using for signing up to websites, games and forums. I have another email address which is only given to actual friends.

Result: no spam for me at all. Ever. Management required on my part: zero.

I more or less completely ignore my original email address except for just after making a purchase to ensure the receipt came through. And best of all because it's a hotmail address, Microsoft are paying for all the spam handling software, storage of the several GB worth of Spam collected over 15 years and of course the processor time. Until last year I was considering trying to get an apple webmail address to use for spam, because honestly I'd rather the Jobsien form-over-function hipster brigade suffered ...but then microsoft brought out windows 8 and have actually tried to claim with a straight face that it is an improvement, so I guess I'll stick with punishing Redmond instead.

Where was I? Oh yes. Spam. It is bad. The solution? Well, as the great Dennis Leary once said: life sucks - get a helmet.

So, what's the best sci-fi film never made?

Jez Lawrence

Can't beleive no-one mentioned richard morgan

Altered Carbon, Broken Angels, Woken Furies (Takeshi Kovacs FTW!)

or Market Forces (Max Max + LA Law = all the right people being messily killed in awesome car chases)

Anti-Sec spoof threatens s'kiddie mayhem

Jez Lawrence


"The prank illustrates the potential pitfalls of an anonymous internet campaign on the web."

as opposed to an internet campaign... somewhere else? Is this like having a road rage incident on a road?

Next you'll be claiming people who comment on articles are a bit pedantic...

MPs call for inquiry into Tory terror arrest

Jez Lawrence

hate to defend them...

Er... I think by 'politicians should not be involved in future' they mean they shouldn't be breifed about an impending arrest in future - which is right and correct, because that amounts to a tip off. You don't call a drug dealer's mum just before you raid the house, do you?

That said (god I feel dirty, defending MPs. Eugh) - I love the fact that when anti terror laws (or any laws) are applied to MPs, all of a sudden the political classes clamour that Its A Scandal and Something Must Be Done.

When its some poor 80 year old bloke shouting at a Labour conference though... that's just 'unfortunate'.

Pretty much the same as FOI. Its all good as long as its used to humiliate Local Authorities and rival Ministers' civil service departments, but as soon as it applies to MPs directly...? How many times over the last few years has there been an issue with someone's expenses? At first they actually tried to change the law because when they passed the FOI Act in the first place they had for some reason not thought it might apply to them and were very shocked indeed when it turned out it did!

Then we've had another year or so of 'You may not like it, but I haven't broken any rules' for someone to actually say 'er.... well maybe we should change the rules so they weren'aren't so blatantly open to abuse?'. Not that I think it'll happen, but there we go.

While I'm abusing hyprocritical politicians - wacqui jacqui really does get up my nose. When talking about Fred whatsisface's pension/payoff - 'he may not have broken the law but he's been convicted in the court of public opinion'. When questioned about 'her' second home 'I haven't broken any rules'

God I hate that woman.

Council to crack down on Cracknuts Lane

Jez Lawrence

Presumably the whole town is getting renamed?

I mean, the place is called 'lewes' which sounds awfully like another word for lavatory.

Its an admittedly terrible bad pune or play on words - but since they seem to actually be basiing the whole silly plan on the premise that bad puns are so dreadful we have to rename a bunch of streets, then I think they ought to rename the whole bloody place, lest it become known as 'toiletville'. Its certainly how I'm going to refer to the place from now on.

If you're going to start down a a silly path, at least have the balls to follow the path to its logical conclusion - or give it up as a bad job before you even start.

Terry Pratchett knighted for services to literature

Jez Lawrence

@ iamapizza

Everyone is entitled to their opinion.

And mine, sir, is that you must be telling the truth in at least one part of your comment because surely only someone who is, in fact, a dough-filled heart-attack-in-waiting could possibly be of the opinion that SIR Terry Pratchett has no talent.

You are, in fact, a pizza.

In fact, your crust must surely be stuffed with something unbeleivably bland. Something, you might say, which has absolutely <i>no taste at all</i>.

Vista SP1 kills and maims security apps, utilities

Jez Lawrence

Activate smug mode

I knew I was right not to invest in this needless OS upgrade. All my gamer friends, obsessively wanting to use DX10 insist I need to upgrade. I say 'sod it, shiny graphics aren't everything, and I'm not buying vista till at least SP2'. I learned my lesson from XP thanks very much.

And look! SP1 forcibly deactivates Zone Alarm, a product I've relied on for years now, without incident!

Do Microsoft not learn (perhaps a silly question)? Aren't the EU going to pounce all over them for anticompetitive practices? Given that almost all the products that don't work are security products it could be argued I think that M$ are taking the line that Vista comes with its own security apps so you don't need 3rd party ones. I personally have no objection to them bundling their products, it doesn't stop me getting alternative products instead (on XP i use firefox and creative player - but I don't feel hard done by that they gave me I.E. and Media player free at all), but now they're actively STOPPING you using other products you have paid for in order to secure your desktop environment.

Bill, Bill, Bill - haven't you spent enough time in the EU's business courts?

Animal rights activist hit with RIPA key decrypt demand

Jez Lawrence

14, 28, 56 days...

Well, whether this particular piece of legislation is right or wrong, it does kind of put the mockers on the need to extend the 'hold without charge' period, since the biggest reason for this is supposedly the need to crack encryption. They won't provide an encryption key? Charge them with failure to provide it, refuse bail, sentence them and lock them up for up to five years legitimately while you investigate the other offences. In a nice prison where everyone can see them and they aren't subject to dodgy control orders.

HM Govmint can't have it both ways. Well, actually, they probably can, but they *shouldn't*.