* Posts by spegru

370 publicly visible posts • joined 24 Dec 2007


If I could turn back time, I'd tell you to keep that old Radarange at home



Back in the early 90s I worked at a fibre comms supplier and we had to run stability tests to check that the gear was working without errors. I don't know how it was originally found, but it was discovered that a plastic bag of coins, when shaken about a bit, would cause errors to appear.

Even now I'm unsure of the physics that made that happen, but suffice to say that subsequent generations of equipment are much better shielded!

Automotive Grade Linux shops for hypervisor to accelerate smart cars


Well that's my local friendly garage scr*wed then

WWW daddy Sir Tim Berners-Lee stands up for end-to-end crypto


End 2 End?

Surely the answer is not to weaken the encryption but to terminate it and restart it at some secure physical location: WhatsAPP's offices? GCHQ? or somewhere where you need a Judge approved warrant to get in

Up close with the 'New Psion' Gemini: Specs, pics, and genesis of this QWERTY pocketbook


That Smell

Am I alone in reminiscing about the lovely smell of a brand new Psion just out of the box?

The Psion returns! Meet Gemini, the 21st century pocket computer


gimme gimme gimme!

UK.gov has outsourced tech policy to Ofcom because it is clueless – SNP techie


Re: And we wonder why no-one in government has a clue...

Nortel was on the skids well before 21cn and PBT-TE. More to do with the near-fraudulent 'leasing' of equipment as part of the 2000 internet bubble burst. Pretty much the same fate as Lucent.

Mind you if we're concentrating on BT then yes you could blame them and 21CN for the demise of Marconi and letting Huawei into the UK telecoms scene

BT will HATE us for this one weird 5G trick


Frequently Confused

The writer thinks that data rates have driven a need for higher frequencies - not so

All current mobile networks operate in the 800 & 1800Mhz bands and have done since almost the beginning of mobile.

The major solution to increasing traffic including Data has been increasing frequency re-use - enabled by smaller cells and hence more towers (or lampposts)

Some cells are now so small it's even possible to argue that modern mobile networks are actually fixed networks - with radios on the end!

TeamViewer denies hack after PCs hijacked, PayPal accounts drained


Re: Nope, Teamviewer is the tool, not the source

so what we are now hearing is that teamviewer can be used by this exploit - even if you don't have teamviewer installed!

Argh we're all going to die! - or something....


Re: I could be wrong but

No sign of any of that on TV11 and anyway it wasn't installed with root privilege on the Mint machine.

Not 100% sure on the Win7 machine.....

Anyway basically if this hack really has happened it might be equivalent to leaving a PC open in a coffee shop - except that there is no actual physical access


I could be wrong but

It's striking me that even if TV has been hacked tehn if you always leave your PC locked (as it does in Windows or Mint if you leave it alone for say 10mins) then a hacker still has to get past that password (if you have one)

Or is that very naive?

Building automation systems are so bad IBM hacked one for free


Re: Sadly unsurprising

That has to be the most scary IoT security story I've heard so far

Land Rover's return: Last orders and leather seats for Defender nerds


I'm quite sure thr reasons for demise are nothing to do with emissions as those are easily fixed with a different engine as it has received many time over the years anyway. Nope I'm pretty sure the reason is profitability in manufacture - it's all that hand mad stuff that's seen it' demise. Still using 1940s manufacturing techniques does not make business sense in the 20 teens.

Leaves a gap in the range tho - after all this is where LR gets its pedigree from. There have been enough renditions of a replacement after all but there is no reason it needs to have a separate chassis...

Microsoft: We bought Skype. We make mobiles.. Oh, HANG ON!


aaand you can connect Skype to Lync if you take out a microsoft account and use that on skype.

It works ok, perhaps surprisingly



aaand you can connect Skype to Lync if you take out a microsoft account and use that on skype.

It works ok, perhaps surprisingly

RIP Windows RT: Microsoft murders ARM Surface, Nokia tablets


Re: Poor timing for this announcement

I really dont see how Win8 being a problem because of the tiles & lack of start button etc has anything much to do with their ability to support ARM base processors. Nope I really do reckon this simply a matter of left and right hand. It also calls into question the whole validity RPi announcement that was obvioulsy timed to coincide with the RPi 2 launch.

PS Eben you really ought to know better!

Bring back error correction, say Danish 'net boffins



I like the sound of this - in principle. Forward Error Correction is already in use in core networks around the world - but not at Layer 2/3, at Layer 1.

Whether it could be implemented at the higher layers though, with implications for all sorts of equipment & protocols, does sound like a big question.

No reason NAT should be a problem though, if it's inside the carrier networks

UK government officially adopts Open Document Format



Great news of course. I'm now also hoping that gov guidance to the public will include pointers to where they can get suitable software such as Libreoffice Abiword and how to "save as" from MS Word complete with assurances to ignore the MS "cat death" warnings.

Oh and one more thing, I need some suitable software for my tablet. Come on devs!


Re: And yet again...

When will people understand that this is not really about current market share for ODF. Market share does not indicate anything much in terms of the "right" and "wrong" way to go about things. It does not point the way to an inevitable outcome.


Re: Yay!

Did I detect irony? I certainly hope so.......


Re: Better but still a bit of a pigs ear

Are you sure about those incompatibilities in current versions of Libreoffice?

I'm noticing that you keep referring to OOo and OpenOffice writer which are known to be behind.

When did you last try? I'll have to check myself later on........

Video review: Our sysadmins drink in the latest SIP phones


Call Quality

Although Skype is only a side issue on this subject, I have to say that recently I have found call quality and reliability to be excellent for the most part, even to Android mobiles. Maybe that becuase I'm using the Linux version and a headset? I dont know for sure other than a colleagues Vista PC setup really was crap and is now fine on W7.

Just a pity that I expect MSFT to kill it one way or another before long

Feature-phones aren't dead, Moto – oldsters still need them


Poor understanding of optics

"Lenses focus light, not the lack of it"?

An image is made from both light and shade so this argument is tosh

Some of the rest of the points are well made but really why does anyone need specific hardware when it is clearly just the user interface that needs tweaking for older people - or indeed visually impaired of any age? Come on someone there must be an App for that!

Why it's time to wrap brains around software-defined networking


Re: SDN is horse shit

Methinks you do complain too much. 4300 words dissing SDN?!

I notice you dont say you cover Layer1 where out of band control has been the way it's done, for ever. So nothing new here with this SDN, you might say. Likewise Layer 2, more than likely, as that's also now the domain of carriers large and small.

It's not the network per se that's the problem, it's the ops that go with scaling and managing it

In the networking space, for Microsoft, read Cisco. Anyone else is 'dangerous', until the alternatives arrive.

Data Centre World: It's hard work cooling off those hot racks


2 shows in one

co-location of a different sort was in evidence with Cloud Expo Europe and Data Centre World sharing floorspace under the same roof. It was the first time that the two events had run simultaneously and, at first glance, co-habitation seemed to make a lot of sense.

Indeed it does. For every cloud there is a datacentre lining!

New 4G router pitched at biz bods sick to death of titsup networks


Ah but is it 4G?

As apple found, out european 4G requires LTE, not some old 3G stuff like they have in the US

Q: Just why are AT&T, banks snubbing kit from Cisco & co? A: Control


There is a pattern here


1. It's well known that Microsoft are seeing their market share eroded due to a) Mobiles/tablets and b) cloud solutions.

2. Similarly/Consequently, SMEs are increasingly allowing their 'stuff' to be looked after in the cloud, so that they no longer control the technology strategy that was previously spoon fed to them by MSFT/Cisco.

3. Cloud people are technology experts that understand networks in just the same way that Mobile/Tablet/Server OS technology experts understand hardware & computer platforms (and in the same way that SME people often/generally don't), and are most definitely choosing their own technical strategies rather than having it spoon fed to them.

4. Even outside of big Cloud/Datacentre operations such as Amazon, the volume of data is now so high that technology experts are also forming enterprise strategies.

ergo, Cisco Lock In is lost in that same way as Microsoft's

Sanity now: Gnome 3.12 looking sensible - at least in beta


Amazing what a bit of competition can do

So Gnome has improved, presumably due to competition from


Cinnamon (especially)




Aand all running on the same Linux kernel.

If only other OSs offered such choices

Microsoft may pick iPad for first release of Fondleslab Office™


What's the real news here?

That it's not for Android.

What, developing anything that works with the Linux kernel?!

If that does ever happen we will know that MSFT have truely lost the plot.

Meanwhaile I'm looking forward to a Libreoffice for Android!

Three-yaarrgh! Major UK mobile network's data goes down


Had this yesterday

Could be unrelated, but I had no web email or play store around 6:30pm in the City and outward toward Essex on the Train.

I thought, this remeinds me of what sometimes happens on Wifi with my BT homehub3

So I switched my mobile data of and then on again - and all was well again


Torvalds: Linux devs may 'cry into our lonely beers' at Christmas


Oi Mr AC!

What the heck have you been drinking this early in the morning?


Festive wishes to you all

LG: You can stop hiding from your scary SPY TELLY quite soon now


Smart TV?

Smart TV?

I'd been thinking about these sexy new things, but I reckon it's now clear that what you really need is a nice small barebone PC (say a teeny Zotac Zbox) running the Linux distro of my choice and XBMC.

Tha features I want without the security issues.

BT Sport scores own goal with £897m Champions League footie rights deal


To be Fair

Line rental and broadband access goes to Openreach, whereas this is BT retail.

(that's also the reason you get two boxes with BT Infinity)

Some might be hard pressed to tell the difference of course, esp as Mr Patterson is CEO of both!

Brings forward the day of a complete split between the two methinks

Why Teflon Ballmer had to go: He couldn't shift crud from Windows 8, Surface


Re: I'm a MSFT Fan But.....

Yes it's obvious MSFT alienated business with Windows8 but the reason was loss of market share to tablets. Many such users were/are home users for whom laptops and desktops are unnecessary. Microsoft's major mistake was to assume it could enforce a single solution on both.

The new management will surely make windows 9 a proper desktop solution that does not try t o be the same everywhere

Dell: Gov's cost-cutting mania is driving away suppliers


I detect

a need for a real low cost alternative to the windows PC

Netbooks showed the way

Or Maybe MSFT will opensource windows!

Fanbois smash iPhone 5s much sooner than iPhone 3s ... but WHY?

Thumb Up

Re: Hm

I always liked my Sony Ericsson smartphones -

P800 and the P910 UIQ and yes they were definitely smart at the time ? 2003/4/5

I miss that 5 way click wheel and hardware keyboard

If only they'd had 3G I might have continued for a very long time

Bigger than Twitter: Opera releases rebuilt Chromium-based browser


Obsession with 'market share'

I've used Opera for over 10yrs and always enjoyed being different. A pity if it becomes a badge engineered product but it's nice to see the comment that Opera 'may have only a small single-digit market share but that still counts as a hefty number of people – it has more active users than Twitter'.

This obsession seems to stem from the old VHS vs Betamax war, where compatibility equalled support equalled sales equalled future support. Completely irrelevant to the internet age esp now that IE6 non-standards have now more or less gone. Heck I bet Ferrari and Rolls Royce dont have much market share either but you dont see such owners stressing whether they ought to have bought a Ford!

So just go ahead and get what you fancy!

Same applies to Desktop Linux and Blackberry phones - maybe even WinPho!

'The Apprentice' is a load of old codswallop, says biz prof


It's TV

I enjoyed the first couple of series, but after that came to realise that The Apprentice is utter tripe. Ok just maybe some of it would be appropriate at a call centre selling PPI or double glazing, but what's distinctly missing is the importance of having a good business idea.

The programme is now well past its sell by date!

Mint 15 freshens Ubuntu's bad bits


Re: VM ready

Oh yes indeedy. I also have an XP available to run in a Root Jail c/w MSOffice2007 - just in case I need that, but I never do. I have TomTom (the GPS thing) Home installed also, but actually since I got my new Samsung Phone I never need that any more either.

I keep the XP isolated from the internet to keep those nasty viruses away and just have a shared folder where both the XP and Mint can see, in order to access docs etc

I've been using the same XP VM for a year or so now on different machines. No need to reinstall it.......


I just upgraded

from Mint12 to Mint15 on my main desktop - on which I get most of my work done

Very Nice, no pain - no issues and no CLI!

For 'work' the killer app for me is Thunderbird email with the lightning calendar plugin

Oh yes and the newest Libroffice

I had my first hands on with Win8 just the other day - 'kin ell! Now I see what they've been talking about

Hey, Teflon Ballmer. Look, isn't it time? You know, time to quit?


Re: Only the second?

ME was the last Windows I ever voluntarily used. Didnt seem too bad at the time.

Then I discovered SuSE and Mint - the rest is history

'Liberator': Proof that you can't make a working gun in a 3D printer


I got all excited for a moment

Liberator gun I thought? Surely it has to be one of these!


Avon would have been proud......

Notebook makers turn to Android in face of Windows woes


Re: Apps

'normal users can't be arsed with the command line. We have mice and pointers these days, seems to have passed Linux by'

Obviously you havn't looked at Linux for quite---a---while!

Netbooks projected to become EXTINCT by 2015


Re: @gcarter 12Apr13 21:42

You don't need 3g or Bluetooth as long as you also have have a phone to tether to



The reason netbooks are losing out is because of Microsoft. When first introduced with Linux on board they were fine since they didn't have to be dragged down by crapware anti virus or indeed the monolithic piece of junk that is windows. Of course msft put a stop to that because of the underlying PC architecture. In turn, that killed the business case for the hardware makers.

So pleased am I with my Packard bell dot s3 netbook with its 7.5 hr battery, that sensing this very netbook demise, i bought a spare one.

It does everything I need running Linux Mint!

Gartner: RIP PCs - tablets will CRUSH you this year


Re: Not so much

I'd say that this really is PCs being crushed by tablets - hardly the performance v software thing at all.

For so many years the PC was the only choice for an internet device (plus Macs for rich weirdos).

Now there is choice people are choosing devices without bloated OSs and virus problems that slow down to a crawl after a few months. Currently these are tablets, the user experience having been established on phones. Increasingly it's also smart TVs, so actually I dont even think it's about portability.

So fundamentally it's survival of the fittest and Windows PCs are too much trouble for (most) end users

Wealthy London NIMBYs grit teeth, welcome 'ugly' fibre cabinets


6 foot?!

Nope I've just measured one: it's 4ft 7"

Yes they're powered - it tends to be a requirement when using non conductive optical fibre to connect to the exchange.

I do agree that sometimes their positioning across the pavement could have been better though.

Single IPv6 packet kills Kaspersky-protected PCs, fix emerges



do we still need antivirus in 2013?

Huawei CEOs are 'migratory birds'

Black Helicopters

Fits perfectly into the Hive

No-one is an individual. Anyone can be replaced - even CEOs

That is how they think and work

Chinese search giant Baidu launches free AV


Do you really want Chinese Government spyware on your PC?

Nope I didnt think so...

Such a small step from there to blocking disapproved words from web searches like they do over there