* Posts by Rich

322 publicly visible posts • joined 4 Apr 2007


Companies to be Bob the Builder with Firefox 3.5


Needs a quirk mode

So that SAP and all that legacy crap will display properly. That's the main job of a browser in most corporates, the Internet is just an extra.

Data-sniffing trojans burrow into Eastern European ATMs


Enough, really

"A secondary menu also allows the person to force the machine to dispense all its cash."

I mean, isn't that enough without all the fluffing around.

Her Maj honours NZ wizard

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Blanket man next


Not to mention cammo lady...

Cisco joins Dow, as GM jettisoned

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Sorry, you just failed your Turing Test.

Summer debut for Judge Dredd computer smart-rifle


Quoting Tojo

"When will people learn that it's not technology that wins wars but brains, daring and a bit of luck"

That's a quote from Japanese Prime Minister Hideki Tōjō, August 5th, 1945.

Worldwide GPS may die in 2010, say US gov


Try using a map/chart

As Mr Page would no doubt tell you, nobody got any sort of commerical or military shipping ticket without learning to navigate the hard way (dead reckoning, compass bearings, stars, radar).

NZ Telecom in 'deep' with Apple



Christchurch! Sheep and bogans. TCNZ is run out of Wellington and Auckland.

Taking a first bite out of Wolfram Alpha


Americans *do* eat rabbits

I had rabbit in a New York restaurant once. It was yum.

The system is obviously being populated with incorrect axioms already.

Watchdog bans Natasha Richardson ski helmet ad

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"a car driving off the edge of a high building to the tune of "Layla" by Eric Clapton?"

Classic! That'd make me buy one of their shitty cars...

I object to ski helmets anyway. Unless you are racing, doing huge air or very gnarly off-piste, you don't need one. But because more people are getting them, you've got all these semi-oblivious people hurtling about with plastic clubs attached to their heads, forcing others to get helmets to protect themselves. Plus one day we'll get made to have them, in the same way as bike helmets.

Court upholds 'hacking' charge against smut-surfing worker


So it's a crime to waste time at work

So the US didn't abolish slavery after the Civil War then..

London cab & bus trials for satnav speed-governor kit


Are we talking slow or fast zombies

It's an important distinction, really?


An unthinking programmer's guide to the new C++


Constant functions

Just to be constructive for once, I like the way you can make functions constant. Handy in embedded programming where you want minimal codesize and readability.

Site schools world+dog in browsing history pilfering

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Firefox is open source

The guys who built StartPanic.com could stop whinging, download the source and make a fix. (Like making it impossible for script to discover link highlight states).

Microsoft blocks dirty dozen apps from mobile store


What people said

You can load any app onto a Windows Mobile device, and that isn't changing, so they can run open source or commercial apps that do anything you want.

However, they or the operators do have a switch to change that. I doubt Microsoft will, because it'll bring on court cases - individual operators can (and I think have, believe T-Mobile locked their phones down). But with so much of Windows Mobile market share in enterprises, they need to support the loading of arbitrary enterprise apps or drive this away.

Unicode bloat blights SAP upgrades

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IT overloading

A terabyte disk costs a few hundred bucks. That's enough for 4000 unicode chars on everyone in the UK.

It's hard not to include that this is another instance of the IT industry making a huge meal of a very simple problem.

How to turn votes into tax free cash


Further correction

Callaghan's last date for an election was October 1979 (5 years after October 1974). He lost a motion of no-confidence in March after losing the support of the SNP. Had this not happened, he could have voluntarily called an election that spring, or waited until the early autumn.

Home Office 'ring of steel' fails the pig plague test


Charter flights

Doubt the pax lists are ever very accurate. They'll have the people who booked, minus those that met Mexican guys and stayed in Cancun, plus the people the reps sold cheap tickets to in the pub, etc, etc.

Branson mothership bottom smacked in 'touch & go' incident


He could always talk to the Koreans

The Huge-Dong 3 or whatever it's called seems to be close to working. They could blast rich people into space on that..

Facebook vote a 'massive con trick' says privacy advocate


It was devolution

Not independence that was on offer.

BBC Trust moots new licence laws to cope with net


It's a subscription model each way

If they have ISPs monitor whether people watch the BBC content and demand payment, then only those who watch the content will pay.

That's the same model as encoding the feeds and giving subscription keys to anyone buying a license, or in the traditional world, making it an paid option on Sky, etc.

Either way, they only get pounds from those who actively want the service.

Or, they just get the government to pay them out of general taxation, like the (Australian) ABC.

A Geeks Guide2 ...Hacking


Would you guys mind?

If I order a copy using a credit card number that isn't my own?

How gov scapegoats systems for man-made errors


In the olden days

In the 70's, my skool had 800 kids and one school secretary who handled all the admin without benefit of computers. Not sure why they need them now?

UK operation patents DVD lockdown

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That is very clever

One of the few patents that actually deserve to be granted.

It might not actually work in the real world, but it's a really elegant solution.

Oracle and HP proposed joint Sun dismemberment deal



That it would be ok for Oracle to kill the only free database option? Can you imagine the comments if Microsoft was trying to acquire Firefox..

Firefox exploit sends Mozilla into 'high-priority fire drill' mode


Don't panic Mr Mainwaring

Don't Panic! Fix Bayonets! They don't like it up em Mr Mainwairing, they don't like it...

Kiwi telecom inks contract with convicted hacker

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If he doesn't get a job

What's he gonna do for the rest of his life? Twoc cars? Hack cash dispensers?

There's this concept of *rehabilitation*. Anyway, the judge rightly thought that making work for a few geeks wasn't up there with violent crime, and gave him the lowest penalty available (conviction and discharge) that would stop the 'merkins from extraditing him. (Double jeopardy and that).

Microsoft's Silverlight for mobile to muscle iPhone



Deep zoom eh?

It'll be the tool of choice for mobile pr0n..

DARPA orders hypersonic Nazi Doodlebug engine


Tory aircraft

SLAM/Pluto *was* a Tory aircraft. The reactor was called the Tory.

Interestingly, it produced 30,000lb of thrust according to the reference, which isn't very impressive by modern standards (the Rolls Royce Trent that takes you on your holidays manages at least 53000lb).

Nature security breach prompts password reset


+1 to Charles

Exactly Charles.

Bank sites and anything else that accesses money should use two-factor authentication. Making people generate obscure passwords and change them every 5 minutes is less secure, not more.

For a bunch of sites (like Nature), the password is securing their data, not mine. So they get a very simple password - if they try to force me out of this, chances are I won't use the site at all.

Ofcom plots out wireless mic future


Not just mics

You also have radio pickups on guitars and stuff.

I think you can engineer around the latency, but it's an expensive hobby for short run equipment - much easier to use an old fashioned analogue radio.

Israelis develop 'safe' plutonium: good for power, bad for weapons


Wrong terminology

Americium isn't a rare earth, it's an actinide.

Developers more 'satisfied' with PHP than other codes


"than other codes"

Is this sun-speak or something? It's a programming *language*.

DARPA orders 'Katana' monoblade nano-copter


Range of 80's Suzuki motorcycles

Katana was used for Suzuki's "futuristic" range of high-end bikes in the 80's:


Cambridge security boffins slam banking card readers


Or worse?

What, you're harmlessly taking a hundred quid out the cashy and a chainsaw springs out and takes your legs off at the knees?

Ryanair trades blows with 'idiot blogger'


Giz a job

I so want a job there. I'd love to be able to just call customers out as wankers, particularly the sort of pedantic twats that spend their time seeking niggles and security holes in websites.

If I could give Ryan a tip, they could put some code in the site that detects Firefox/Macs/Linux and throws up a message:

"F..k off. Our passengers don't want to fly with sad geeks like you. Stay at home and play on your computer, or get IE6 like a normal chav".

That should get them a bit more publicity.

Gadget-buying Taliban 5th column in Blighty - shock!

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If the troops weren't in someone elses country

They wouldn't have the people who live there trying to kill them.

Hacker pokes new hole in secure sockets layer



"the tool uses a proxy on the local area network that contains a valid SSL certificate"

You'd have to identify yourself to get such a certificate, right?

Airline pilots told to switch off mobile phones


I think they modified GSM

I believe the GSM system was modified many years ago to deal with high-altitude/high-speed devices attempting to connect.

Apparently (GA) pilots here in NZ use phones quite a lot, sometimes with unfortunate consequences:


US gambling capital bans iPhone card counter


There are countries other than the US

Where maybe they allow casinos, but don't give them special legal protection against those wanting to even up the odds. Then again, if you tried on card counting at Sun City Victoria Falls you'd probably be fed to the (conveniently close by) crocodiles.

Wanna see how to use Win 7 UAC to pwn a PC?

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I've never had a problem

I've never acquired any malware in a way that could be prevented by UAC.

My machine is patched and running antivirus and spyware checkers, I've got a firewall - moreover I know what an executable file is and how to assess the risk. I turned off UAC on my Vista box, coz I don't want two or three warnings every time I install software.

Of course, if Microsoft really wanted to secure things, they could move to the iPhone/XBox model - everything has to be tested and approved by Microsoft before it will run. I think that would create much wailing and complaint, though.

Time to axe Microsoft's Zune


Not the point?

Isn't the reason for stuff like the Zune just a holding action to keep Microsoft in the market in case anything comes from that direction to threaten the core OS business? Same with MSN, Windows Mobile, XBox, etc, etc.

Bit of a waste of money though, but it isn't that much money that's being thrown away in terms of MS overall profits. (Online services and devices together lose USD2.7bln. The rest of the business makes USD20bln.)

Iron Maiden axe cut ribbon on 'rock’n’roll' hotel


Back in the day

When IT was fun, I used to stay in the Paramount in New York on my regular trips. It was great, Comme des Garcons clad hotel staff, amazing totty, cocaine fueled drug binges (for others, allegedly).

Made up for spending my day trying to sort out HDLC datalink interfaces at JP Morgan.

(Tried staying in the Royalton once. Real log fires in the rooms. Too snotty though, and accounts banned us from staying there after they got the USD350/night bill. The Paramount came in cheaper than shiteholes like the Marriott, so that was fine with the beancounters).

25 years of Mac - the good, the bad, and the cheese grater


Mac IIe's were good machines

Especially with the CPM plug in card.

I had a Powerbook 170 when I worked briefly in marketing. That trackball was the biz. I don't understand why it was the first and last machine to have one.

C dominated 2008's open-source project nursery


Yeah, right

So basically, their PR department, which compiled this press release, doesn't know the difference between C, C++ and possibly C#.

Airline ticket receipt scam spreads malware


You would have to

- Not have a virus checker running in your email chain or PC

- Not have a mail rule that bans ZIP files with EXEs (ok, these are annoying)

- Ignore all the warnings that any recent system shows about running an EXE.

DHS deploys undercar Kraken tentacle-bombs


@David S

I read that as DHSS too.

But all you really need to deal to chavs is a landmine designed to fit under cars of regulation rideheight, but be set off when a lowered Vauxhall Nova or similar passes over it.

Addonics NASU2 micro USB NAS adaptor



75x30x25 isn't tiny. The size of a USB key would be tiny. The size of a plug would be really tiny.

Also, given it needs powering, wireless would be cool.

Brit forces get hoverstare ducted-fan droid


I reckon a shotgun would deal to one of those.

You can just see some of the posher bits of the army putting an order in for a brace of Purdeys.

No military mobile bill-waiver from O2 and Virgin


What about other workers

What happens if you're going abroad to help people rather than kill them?

If the MoD wants, it could offer to pay its people for things like mobile phone contracts.

I'm more inclined to get my phone from Virgin & O2. I wonder if any Middle Eastern operators give you a contract holiday if you go off to join the Taliban.

(Also, for those demanding that people "support our troops", could I mention that this is a global site. Note everyone reading this is a subject of the New British Empire).

Wikimedia taps mystery sugardaddy for advisory board


Plenty of pros around

In a typical 5* Mexican hotel..