* Posts by Andy Davies

196 publicly visible posts • joined 21 Jul 2006


Michael Gove says Britain needs to create its own DARPA

Andy Davies

Re: Terrifying

"Churchillian leadership skills" is a very high mark to aim for....

well since Winnie apparently succeeded despite (?) being drunk most of the time perhaps we should consider Farage .. . or Boris's dad?

'Panama papers' came from email server hack at Mossack Fonseca

Andy Davies

With Googles help: 2.6TB/5Mb/60/60/24 = 48.14814814814815 days - that's assuming 5Mb/s dedicated.

Bash on Windows. Repeat, Microsoft demos Bash on Windows

Andy Davies


My cynical side thinks that far too many people saw the change to Win10 as a leap too far, and if they had to handle that much change they might as well go for Ubuntu/ Mint, this would allow these people to put a foot into that camp while remaining firmly tied to ms' apron strings.

My whimsical side remembers a PC User Group meeting in London around 1985: a senior honcho from ms UK said that the next version of msDos would be binary compatible with Unix..... at a meeting a couple of months later this was completely pooh-poohed -then they handed out free copies of Windows 1.0 - on a good commercial PC of the time the windows part was so slow as to be unusable (the underlying was still Dos).

My realistic side sees this as a possible alternative to Win10/Ubuntu dual booters.

(The tricky bit may be threads/ processes).

GoDaddy goes boldly into cloudy servers

Andy Davies

Isn't Bigrock already doing this for Win with parallels?

Steve Jobs, MS Office, Israel, and a basic feature Microsoft took 13 years to install

Andy Davies

Re: Bad Idea


Alice, Bob and Verity, too. Yeah, everybody's got a story, pal

Andy Davies

Melanie (second name encrypted) suggested this:

Alice had a brand new pair of roller-skates

Bob had a brand new key

Bob put the key in a strongbox and padlocked it - he kept the Key

Bob sent the box to Alice

Dick intercepted the box but couldn't open it, so sent it onwards

Alice double-padlocked the box and kept her Kkey

Alice sent the box to Bob

Dick intercepted the box but couldn't open it, so sent it onwards

Bob took off his padlock with his Key

Bob sent the box to Alice

Dick intercepted the box but couldn't open it, so sent it onwards

Alice opened the box with her Kkey

Alice took out the key and put on her roller-skates

The rest is musical history ffolks.

Buying gov.UK kit via price-comparison digital portal could 'save £10bn'

Andy Davies

in 2015, the Department for Work and Pensions cut its web-hosting costs by 90 per cent

in 2015, the Department for Work and Pensions cut its usable web-site by 90 per cent

... fixed!

Andreessen stokes the Facebook Free Basics ‘colonialism’ row

Andy Davies

Re: "free data service that gets impoverished rural Indians online"

An amazingly biased, and factually unjustifiable statement.

and fwiw quite a number of India's rural poor have/ have access to a cellphone (probably not 'Smart') - that can provide weather, market/ crop prices - as sms (which costs ~ 50 paise).

Boffins' gravitational wave detection hat trick blows open astronomy

Andy Davies

Re: Wow! Just Wow!

so, another amazingly expensive kit to detect something that is incomprehensible to virtually everyone?

School network manager wins £10,000 in NCC Group Cyber 10K challenge

Andy Davies

reached the prototype stage, with Windows 7 as the initial target platform

So lesson 1 has been learnt - you can't keep up with the big boys, everything changes too fast.

Are Indians too stupid to be trusted with free Internet?

Andy Davies

Re: Some Way, Some How.

it seems the Indian government have decided

TRAI isn't the gov't - it is an independent authority - OK, quango if you like.

Rooting your Android phone? Google’s rumbled you again

Andy Davies

Re: This is not...

First Direct is fine on rooted phones, but I know some others tend to complain. And I must admit I can see their logic. So banking shouldn't be available on PCs which allow root access?

Five technologies you shouldn't bother looking out for in 2016

Andy Davies

Re: Five technologies you shouldn't bother looking out for in 2016

Excuse me! - could you direct me to the non-win-v-linux comments please?

BOFH: I want no memory of this pointless conversation. Alcohol please

Andy Davies

Re: One can only wonder

.... and remind me - how old do you have to be to buy alcohol in the various United States of America?

Docker bags unikernel gurus – now you can be just like Linus Torvalds

Andy Davies

Re: nostalgia

Sounds a lot like MS-DOS. Never did get my Epson dot-matrix printer working properly with Wordstar.

Why not? I had no problems (though Wordstar wasn't my favourite) - with the right Esc sequences it even worked with:

copy con: lpt1:

999 What's your emergency: Mega millions Met call handling IT muckup?

Andy Davies

Re: 30,000+


- do you prefer tabs or spaces




Andy Davies

Re: Ideology

enabled for multi channel public interaction

landline and mobile phones

delivering improved situational awareness,

"send us a selfie luv"

predictive analytics and data sharing

links to Google

Learn you Func Prog on five minute quick!

Andy Davies

Re: Miranda memories - not all nice

Isn't all abstraction from and, not and or a deviation from what cpu's understand?

Last time I checked nand, or, shift was what cpu's understand

Andy Davies

Re: Its only taken 40 years (approx)

yeah yeah - algol and the dream of computer *scientists* for algebraically provable programming

Andy Davies

Re: May I just be the seond to say-

pure Stob with an extra helping of obfustication... but thanks for the intro to 'i-programmer' - looks as if it might a sort of '.exe' revisited.

UK energy minister rejects 'waste of money' smart meters claim

Andy Davies

Re: Not smart enough

"for people to reduce their bills and use less energy, therefore creating fewer carbon emissions."

Is this woman crazy - she just blew away all the justification for the government;s support for electric/hybrid cars!

Andy Davies

Re: Purpose

Back then central heating was a luxury. In 1970 less than a third of homes had central heating.

and a solid fuel boiler with convection/'gravity' fed radiators counted as central heating.

UK says wider National Insurance number use no longer a no-no

Andy Davies

Re: Pros and Cons

During WWII everyone in the UK had a National Identity Number (and a NI card). At the end of the war the government conceded to liberal (small l) concerns and announced that they were abolished. Fairly soon after that it was announced that they were needed after all - to use the new NHS - they became NHS numbers. I don't think they are used now (the NHS apparently followed the maxim that "an alternative identifier can be easily developed" - indeed they may have followed it repeatedly).

It does however illustrate the fact that from time to time there is a genuine need for the state to identify its citizens; the fact that this is now done in round about ways is, quite honestly both stupid and hypocritical.

Andy Davies

Re: *sigh*

"There's someone at the door"

"Ask them their name"

confusing? awkward?

'Powerful blast' at Glasgow City Council data centre prompts IT meltdown

Andy Davies

Re: Gas fire suppression is bad for hard disks...

IMHO dry pipe water may actually be safer ...

plus ca change!

that was also the consensus (tho' rarely implemented) opinion 20 - 25 years ago.

... pull all the boards, detergent wash, distilled water wash, warm air blow dry (yup, hairdryers) - reportedly better than 90% recovery.

Andy Davies

Jeez, what kind of gas-based fire suppression system shakes buildings and seriously damages equipment?

Well, as I commented in a Contingency Planning report for xxxxxCo some years ago "I have been unable to confirm the Ops. dept. claim that soldered 15mm copper tubing can handle the release of unregulated CO2"

[missing lightbulb icon]

.... but when halon was banned for refrigeration, some cowboys started using butane (works very well unless you get a leak!).

Surely no-one would replace fire suppression gas with butane....

Be afraid, Apple and Samsung: Huawei's IoT home looks cheaper and better

Andy Davies

latest-generation Apple TV functionality, with Siri-like voice navigation through content.

Siri, turn this crap off!

From Zero to hero: Why mini 'puter Oberon should grab Pi's crown

Andy Davies


If OS+language is cool them MUMPS must be cooler - just saying

Bigger than Higgs? Boffins see hints of bulbous new Boson

Andy Davies

six sigma

if my Excel spreadsheet is to be believed the chance of a random sample of 10 people containing one or more who understand this stuff is of the order of six sigma.

So I don't think I'm alone in believing that those who do claim to understand it budded off into their own microverse some decades ago!

Janet pulls open network info for good after DDoSers exploit it

Andy Davies

Re: Dropping ICMP (ping) using a Firewall

So, the last nail in the coffin of the friendly, trusting, real internet

Is the world ready for a Raspberry Pi-powered Lego Babbage Engine?

Andy Davies

Re: Adder

Try Tinkertoy: http://www.computerhistory.org/collections/catalog/X39.81

And It could kick your arse at naughts and crosses.

When I was a lad, B'ham Science Museum had a noughts & crosses computer made from recycled Strowger phone relays.

Samba man 'Tridge' accidentally helps to sink request for Oz voteware source code

Andy Davies

Re: The law is the law and ignoring that doesn't help.

Software per se is not patentable - and should not be (it represents a mathematical or logical idea - there should be no legal controls over ideas!).

afaik this is [still] the case in the EU

Eurocrats deserve to watch domestic telly EU-wide, say Eurocrats

Andy Davies

I think Mr Orlowski underestimates the number of people affected - and annoyed - by this (including peripathetic journos?) . It's not just TV, radio is also restricted - Classic FM politely asks for your postcode if you claim to be 'resident', but the BBC is more restrictive, and just unavailable on some devices.

For UK access why not ask for postcode plus TV licence no. - this would at least prove that an entity which is quite possibly you/part-of-your-household has paid for use of the content - after all, it would be easier though less honest just to set up a proxy tunnel. There's probably something similar for other countries.

KCOM: We're selling our national network assets...

Andy Davies

I've been with Eclipse for donkeys' years - since before they were taken over by the Hull telephone company. I did make an 'international' call from KoH to B'ham once - just to say I'd used a non-red phone box.

'Dear Daddy...' Max Zuckerberg’s Letter back to her Father

Andy Davies

Re: Perhaps, just perhaps...

"if ya' can't feed 'em, don't breed 'em"

so the poorest x% of the world aren't allowed to fuck - right?

Who's right on crypto: An American prosecutor or a Lebanese coder?

Andy Davies

Re: Nope, don't care

That's the point I was making - having them come to your device and have you unlock it is the same thing. Don't comply, then go to jail until you do. It removes the protection criminals enjoy without violating anyone else's right to privacy.

I have an encrypted file on my computer, I made it years ago, it contains nothing of any interest - but - I have absolutely no idea what key I used. So would jail time be appropriate?

TalkTalk plays 'no legal obligation' card on encryption – fails to think of the children (read: its customers)

Andy Davies

Re: She's right....

there is no need to encrypt credit card data because it should be on a server with no public-facing network connection. You only need it to collect your fees don't you?

(Please tell me it's not stored so that it is available to shopping websites that your customers may use!).

Saudis go ape, detain Swedish monkeys at border

Andy Davies

When I was last there it was widely believed that the main de-sal plants were nuclear!

Instead of public sector non-jobbery, Martha, how about creating real entrepreneurs?

Andy Davies

Re: Kinquering Congs their titles take


" we very rarely seem to build up new entreprenurial companies that then go global....

...this again clashes with the usual diagnosis that being British is excessively rapacious ..."

The East India Company comes to mind - outrageously successful for a very very long time --- if only they'd had vaseline for those cartridges.....

HP Stream x360: Flippable and stylish Chromebook killer

Andy Davies

Re: Hmmm

,,, it's got usb 3.0 - shove a spare laptop hdd in a £5 case ...

Boffins: Large Hadron Collider NOW movin', we're getting down and crush groovin'

Andy Davies

Re: "we will learn if the 2 years of repairs worked ,,"

I don't remember actually being told they'd broken their toy the last time they used it!

BOFH: Never mind that old brick, look at this ink-stained BEAUTY

Andy Davies

Re: LP05?!? Why not an IBM 1403N1?

Somewhere in the Midlands, in what by now is probably a desirable live/work conversion, there is an old Victorian iron pillar with the upper-case alphabet plus numerals stamped in a spiral around it.

One day an engineer, either hung over or on a promise, did a rush job of inserting a custom character in the print chain (not drum in this case). Now IBM issued special sets of graduated fractional-ounce torque spanners so this job could be done properly, but they weren't used. On test the chain snapped, came straight through the printer casing and wrapped round said pillar, with the results described. Fortunately the engineer was not in the way - the chain would not have slowed measurably if he had been.

I'd forgotten about bursters - jeez - I used to take home the cylinders of carbon paper and saw them up to fuel our solid fuel boiler!

Dutch Transport Inspectorate raid Uber's Amsterdam office

Andy Davies

Re: I like their complaint

I'm amazed by the number of down-votes for uber - I had no idea so many ex-IT types were now driving cabs <g>

Switch it off and on again: How peers failed to sneak Snoopers' Charter into terror bill

Andy Davies

Re: Experts?

"degree that required differential equations and linear algebra ...."

'O' level maths required differential equations and linear algebra .. well 'Ordinary Alternative' did.

UK Supreme Court waves through indiscriminate police surveillance

Andy Davies


Please tell me it's Lord Alfred Stephen Sumption!

Broadband routers: SOHOpeless and vendors don't care

Andy Davies

Re: Advice?

"A modestly outfitted PC with at least 2 NIC cards can work just as well." - which is exactly what of the shelf routers are!

Andy Davies

Re: I honestly don't know what to do about this?

... well there were a few suggestions if you watched the video

Andy Davies

Re: OpenWRT?

If you watched the video the guy said that BSD systems shared these vulnerabilities.

BOFH: The Great HellDesk geek leave seek

Andy Davies

Re: This sounds horribly familiar

like filling in detailed timesheets - I always used to put down an hour or so as 'filling in timesheet' <g>