* Posts by Tony Green

240 publicly visible posts • joined 16 Nov 2007


You have the right to be forgotten 41.3 per cent of the time says Google

Tony Green

Much as I dislike Google...

... to be fair, I suspect a large proportion of the requests they've been receiving have been totally invalid ones, such as criminals desperate to hide results that reveal their criminal past or politicians trying to hide evidence of their lies.

Radio 4 and Dr K on programming languages: Full of Java Kool-Aid

Tony Green

She does. Which is why I can't listen to it. I really can't stand her voice.

Tony Green

It could have been better without Aleks Krotoski

Irritating American voice, she always gets up my nose. Why couldn't they find someone from this side of the Atlantic to present a programme on British radio?

Streaming tears of laughter as Jay-Z (Tidal) waves goodbye to $56m

Tony Green


For anybody with any interest in great engineers, Robert Charles Alexander's 1999 biography of Blumlein is a must-read.

A truly inspirational life.

Google takes ARC Welder to Android, grafts on Windows, OS X

Tony Green

Re: This is VERY good and important

On Linux at least, there's an option to add a desktop or menu icon. And that works.

Tony Green

Re: Beta!

In the land of Google, Beta doesn't really have the same meaning it has elsewhere. There are loads of things that have been in Beta for years but are heavily used. Android Studio only came out of Beta recently, for example.

It probably depends on the app - <smug>the one I wanted to use is working nicely.</smug> The only moderately serious bug I've found is that if you try to install a second app, it tells you it wants to remove the first one (and does, even if you say "no").

Tony Green

Re: When in Rome...

Obviously it's not going to be useful for every app, but there are certainly apps where being able to run them on the desktop as well as the 'phone could be very useful.

For example, as well as on my 'phone I also run my own Beermad app in an Android emulator because I use it to keep my website's database up-to-date, which often means doing a lot of typing and that isn't an attractive prospect on a 'phone. While newer emulator images are far quicker than they used to be (Lollipop on an Atom emulator is surprisingly fast), not having to wait for the emulator to start up will make this a definite "must have" for me. Of course I can't use the app's GPS or camera functionality, but that's no problem.

Pi(e) Day of the Century is upon us! Time to celebrate 3/14/15 in style, surely?

Tony Green

Re: Load of bollocks

And that date/time format being the yank one, doubly bollocks.

Future imperfect: A UK broadband retrospective

Tony Green

Re: UK Fibre Optic Distribution: It beggars belief

"The question I ask is; Why is the UK so far behind?"

Perhaps (without knowledge of the situation in the other places you mention) because since Thatcher privatised BT its one and only function in life is to return a profit to its shareholders.

A public utility, on the other hand, would have the primary function of providing service to the people of the country.

Tony Green

Re: Andrews & Arnold

I'd add that their customer service is second to none.

Things don't go wrong very often, but when they do there's no bullshit trying to fob me off, just competent engineers who want to help AND KNOW HOW TO!

I could save £500-£600 a year by dumping my BT line and moving to Virgin cable, but what I've heard about their customer service has scared me off. Surely it's time network providers like Virgin had the same conditions applied to them as BT so that you can use any ISP on their wires? I'm no advocate for BT (despite over 30 years working for them and happy to have left) but it seems unfair that they have to open up when the rest don't/

Icelandic brewers knock up whale 'nad beer

Tony Green

At last...

...someone's come up with a beer even less appealing than Greene King IPA. Though only just...

Apple v BBC: Fruity firm hits back over Panorama drama

Tony Green

Get it right!

They haven't "refuted" the accusations, they've DENIED them.

There's a big difference and if you don't know what it is (which seems to be standard for journalists) I suggest you find an old-fashioned thing called a "dictionary" and look the word up.

Assange's WikiLeaks: Give generously this Xmas – for statue of our dear leader

Tony Green

Assange? Courage?

The man too scared to actually face his accusers in open court. And pretends he's more likely to be handed over to the Yanks by Sweden than by the UK.

He isn't fit to sit at the feet of the other two.

Jacking up firearms fees will cost SMEs £3.5 MILLION. Thanks, Plod

Tony Green

No sympathy

Since what the plods currently get to charge for processing a firearms certificate is much less than what it actually **costs** them to process it, the public is subsidising gun-owners. Who generally tend to be people like the landed gentry and others who are far better-off than most of us.

So perhaps it's no bad thing that they should actually have to pay enough so that we don't have to feather-bed them?

After all, most guns are used for no better purpose than blasting birds out of the sky so chinless wonders can pretend they're wonderful "sportsmen" just because they've slaughtered a bit of wildlife.

Curious to know if the UK's Tory-led government is a mega spy? Answer: Yes

Tony Green

Re: I say good

The vast majority of people being beheaded are being killed by our great allies, trading partners and weapons customers, the Saudis.

So let's not pretend there's any great principled stand being taken on this matter.


Tony Green


"The latest solar flare led to an hour-long radio blackout being reported by the US space agency's weather prediction centre".

I'm surprised the US military didn't manage to use that as an excuse to bomb somebody. I suppose there's still time...

Win a year’s supply of chocolate (no tech knowledge required)

Tony Green
Thumb Down

"Everyone loves chocolate"?

A simplistic generalisation based on "I love chocolate so I assume everybody else does".

Can't stand the stuff myself. Tastes horrible and is only made edible if you stuff it full of so much sugar that your teeth start rotting while you're chewing it.

Now if you'd been giving away the delicious sourdough bread they bake at Pump Street, I WOULD have been interested.

NAKED CELEBRITY PICS LAW BOMB dropped on ad giant Google

Tony Green


Could someone please translate that headline into English?

Because I haven't the foggiest idea what it means.

Ab phab: Apple is Britain's coolest brand YET AGAIN

Tony Green

Maybe they should have spelled it "kewlest"

The very phrase "coolest brand" is enough to tell me that all this means is "appeals most to the kind of fuckwitts who are unable to think for themselves".

Of course there are people who have weighed up the options and decided that an iPhone is best for their needs, but it seems the vast majority of people buying them are only doing so because of the fact that it's fashionable. Same people who un-failingly buy whatever they're told is "kewl".

Google right to be forgotten 'looks odd and clumsy'

Tony Green

Of course it's clumsy

They want the whole thing to look as awful as possible to discredit the idea to get it canned. So that's why they're making sure ridiculous demands, especially over high-profile media sites like the BBC and various national newspapers (and the Daily Mail), get as much publicity as possible.

27 Data-Slurping Facts BuzzFeed Doesn't Want You To Know!

Tony Green

Always useful:

$ grep analytics /etc/hosts www.google-analytics.com ssl.google-analytics.com ssl-google-analytics.l.google.com

Good Grief! I just looked at BuzzFeed for the first time out of curiosity. It's pretty clear that their target demographic is thick people.

The cute things they say

Tony Green

Back in the 1980s, green-screen terminals attached to our ICL mainframes had their "protected field" (ie, the parts of the screen you couldn't type anything in, such as labels) half intensity.

Software support bloke: I don't know what's happened, but all the protected fields have disappeared from my terminal.

Me: just to the right of the screen, you'll see a little knob marked "brightness". Can you try pushing that up?

Bloke: ooh wow! They're back!

Fed-up bloke takes email spammers to court – and wins piles of cash

Tony Green

Re: voluntarily ???

I'll tell you how to stop that.

Get the company CEO's email address from http://www.ceoemail.com/

Email him explaining that you consider the constant bombardment of letters as harassment under the terms of the harassment act and if they don't cease immediately, you will issue proceedings against him personally as the person in charge of the company harassing you.

I did, and he crapped himself and stopped the junk mail very quickly.

Linux app lets you control fruit fly brains - with frikkin' LASERS

Tony Green


What the fuck does "frikkin" mean?

Authorities swoop on illicit Wolverhampton SPAM FARM

Tony Green

Perhaps more publicity needed?

First I've heard of 7726 for spam reporting. Evidently the ICO have kept it quiet so as not to make too much work for themselves.

Does it work on Virgin?

Tesco to tout its own smartphone – now THAT'S an unexpected item in the bagging area

Tony Green

I wonder

If it'll come pre-installed with an app to find your nearest closed pub. Tesco seem very good at closing them and turning them into shops, even when the pubs were doing fine beforehand.

Watch out, Yahoo! EFF looses BADGER on sites that ignore Do Not Track

Tony Green

No need for an add-on to delete cookies when you close Firefox. Just set the option in preferences and it's done for you.

Tony Green


...install Cookie Monster and deny all cookies by default, just using CM to enable them on sites where it suits ME to allow cookies to be set. Which means there are not third-party cookies for Badger to detect even when the bastards try to set them.

Top tip, power users – upgrading Ubuntu may knacker your Linux PC

Tony Green

Yes, but...

Most things are easy to fix from backups. Bugger up the bootloader and it gets nasty.

Tony Green

Grub is a problem

Most things breaking are (relatively) trivial to fix. If Grub goes tits-up, it's a serious problem.

Funnily enough, Grub updates are the reason I gave up Ubuntu and moved to Debian. Four or five routine Grub updates threw up messages that they'd failed and my computer may be un-bootable.

I can restore my system from backups easily for almost any problem, but if the Grub bootloader's bust, I'm in the shit!

Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker

Tony Green

Heartbleed is going to be milked

I reckon every website that gets hacked because their own security is crap will be rushing to blame this to take the heat off them. Probably for years to come...

You want an IT course? Welcome to QA Training's Week of Free

Tony Green


No mistake. They've always used their "training" courses as marketing tools.

I remember going on a number of them and a good part of each course was given over to the sort of cross-promotion normally associated with Murdoch media outlets. They even gave incentives to hand over the email addresses of colleagues so QA could spam them.

123-reg shrugs off customer complaints over stealth domain transfer charges

Tony Green

Re: A tenner

As I remember from when I transferred some domains out, 123-Reg don't even HAVE to tell Nominet. You just fill in an online form and it's all done electronically. So cost to them is the power for the server while you do it.

I suspect it's more to do with deterring people from transferring domains away from their crap service.

Though that was at least better than Webhost UK, who I wanted to leave because their staff were bloody useless. I had to ask them and THEY did the transfer. Had me worried they were going to screw it up for me...

Aw, SNAP. It's too late, you've already PAID for your storage array

Tony Green

Aw, Snap???

Can someone translate into English please?

Middle England's allotments become metric battlefield

Tony Green

Oh, for goodness' sake!

It's the bloody Daily Hate! Doesn't that tell you all you need to know about the story?

NHS England DIDN'T tell households about GP medical data grab plan

Tony Green

Re: Funny that..

Here's a tip that worked for me.

Email their CEO, Tom Mockridge, tom.mockridge@virginmedia.co.uk, telling him that you regard their constant unwanted communications as harassment under the terms of the Harassment Act 1997. And that if you receive any more communications you will take action under that act against him personally, as the person responsible for the company.

You'd be amazed how quickly they get their arses in gear to get it stopped and just how apologetic they get.

Brit boffins brew up blight-resistant FRANKENSPUD

Tony Green


So you thought you'd hold of the inflammatory language this time then?

How NOT to evaluate hard disk reliability: Backblaze vs world+dog

Tony Green

Shurely Shome Mishtake?

"Replacing one drive takes about 15 minutes of work. If we have 30,000 drives and 2 percent fail, it takes 150 hours to replace those. In other words, one employee for one month of 8 hour days. Getting the failure rate down to 1 percent means you save 2 weeks of employee salary - maybe $5,000 total? The 30,000 drives costs you $4m."

But what about the cost of any outage between the drive failing and your engineer getting it back and restoring the data?

Or the data you lose because they were written after the last backup?

Or the reputational damage if the failing drive takes out a customer-facing system?

Capita and Updata ink £325m Scottish PSN deal

Tony Green


Someone should donate some old issues of Private Eye to whoever actually handed them the contract.

GPs slam NHS England for poor publicity of data grab plan

Tony Green

Something else we need to know

Who is getting the contract to handle the database?

Bad enough if it's serial incompetents like Crapita, but if like the census it's being handed over to a Yank company, then that's a serious problem for privacy.

Rotten to the core: Apple’s 10 greatest FAILS

Tony Green

What grates for me...

... is the use of the word "fails" when "failures" would be so much more literate (and non-American).

'Maybe we haven't been clear enough about med records opt-out', admits NHS data boss

Tony Green

Re: Radio 4 this morning

"they have no plans to sell it to private companies"

This is distinctly different from "they will NEVER sell it to private companies".

Weasel words, weasel words...

EU warns United States: SHAPE UP on data protection OR ELSE

Tony Green

The US can NEVER be trusted

Anybody who thinks the US will actually respect any agreement it might claim to sign up to is a naive idiot.

Uncle Sam considers the rest of the world to be his property, to do with as he wishes. If it suits American business interests or imperialist aims, the US will spy on, murder or invade anywhere necessary. The only sane way is to work on the basis that America can be trusted about as much as Soviet Russia could.

Furtive ebook readers push Hitler's Mein Kampf up the charts

Tony Green

It can be enlightening

Understanding the demented mind of a man like Hitler can be useful in countering the demented ideas of those who still idolise him.

And it's useful in other ways. Religious groups often try to portray atheists as monsters, "because Hitler was an atheist". Which is rather disproved by, "And so I believe to-day that my conduct is in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator. In standing guard against the Jew I am defending the handiwork of the Lord."

Tony Green

"Personally I find a muslim appearance whilst wearing a racksack to be the most effective...."

Though potentially life-shortening if any of Cressida Dick's death-squads are on the tube.

Report: Prez Obama kicks Healthcare.gov contractor to curb for web disaster

Tony Green

English translation needed

I have no idea what "kicks Healthcare.gov contractor to curb" means.

This seems to have been written either by an illiterate or perhaps someone who only speaks 'Merkin English (which amounts to the same thing).

Checks URL bar... yes, thregister.co.uk

British Second World War codebreaker Alan Turing receives Royal pardon

Tony Green

Re: At last

Better than it was. Though religious organisations are still allowed to work through their bigotry.

And while it's a lot less socially-acceptable to sound off about "poofs" or "fudgers", as a heterosexual man I still hear far too much of it.

Tony Green

Breathtaking pomposity

The wording of the document confirms what I've always thought - Elizabeth Saxe-Coburg-Gotha is one hell of a pompous, self-important bitch.

World+dog: Network level filters block LEGIT sex ed sites. Ofcom: Meh

Tony Green

Good reasons to move to AAISP

"The government wants us to offer filtering as an option, so we offer an active choice when you sign up, you choose one of two options:-

Unfiltered Internet access - no filtering of any content within the A&A network - you are responsible for any filtering in your own network, or

Censored Internet access - restricted access to unpublished government mandated filter list (plus Daily Mail web site) - but still cannot guarantee kids don't access porn.

If you choose censored you are advised: Sorry, for a censored internet you will have to pick a different ISP or move to North Korea. Our services are all unfiltered.

Is that a good enough active choice for you Mr Cameron?"

Tony Green

Re: Hopefully it'll block the Daily Mail and their noncebait sidebar of shame

I'm assuming that as well as a mechanism for telling them that they've wrongly blocked a site, there should be one for telling them there's one they've missed?

Maybe with enough complaints about the filth that the Mail Online publishes whilst hypocritically railing against much less pernicious stuff might get it blocked.