* Posts by Marty McFly

414 posts • joined 23 Jan 2008

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The lights go off, broadband drops out, the TV freezes … and nobody knows why (spooky music)

Marty McFly Bronze badge
WTF?

What is this meter thing and cut-off valve all about??

My water comes out of a hole in the ground from a natural spring. Goes through my house and back in to the ground. Percolates through the field and right back down the hill. Zero waste.

It sounds like the government can shut off your water and use that to coerce you. Seriously though, who cares if you are dehydrated and stinky, as long as the game is coming through complete with targeted adverts in crystal clear ultra high definition.

The PrintNightmare continues: Microsoft confirms presence of vulnerable code in all versions of Windows

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Joke

Could have been a different title....

"Decades after launch, Microsoft realizes their printer software is buggy. Users question what took them so long."

Bitcoin doomed as a payment system and its novelty will fade, says Federal Reserve Board of Governors member

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

This is laughable!

Does anyone here think that the government would have killed Bitcoin (and other crypto currencies) years ago if they could?

Yeah, exactly. And the fact that it is still around means it cannot be killed. The only hope they have is to try and mis-represent it with statements like this FRB member is making. The very nature of a FRB member addressing Bitcoin in a speech legitimizes it. If it was nothing, they wouldn't make an issue out of it.

Let's check back here in a few years. I think BTC is just getting started. Wait until it is 7-8 figures per coin and we will reflect back to the days it was 'only $60k' each.

Happy with your existing Windows 10 setup? Good, because Windows 11 could turn its nose up at your CPU

Marty McFly Bronze badge
FAIL

Heard on next year's earnings call....

"We failed to notice the short supply of chips available when we decided the minimum requirements for Windows 11. While our users are delighted to run our newly regurgitated user interface, they are painfully disappointed because the hardware industry cannot keep up."

Now that China has all but banned cryptocurrencies, GPU prices are falling like Bitcoin

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Megaphone

Buy the dip!

Pick any time in the history of Bitcoin. Buy whatever quantity you want at that price point. Hold for four years. You won't lose money. Now is a good time to buy, especially if you bought during the recent run up. Use dollar cost averaging to bring the overall price of your holdings down.

Remember, Bitcoin is an idea based on real math. There isn't a big building with a BTC logo on it that the government can seize. Bitcoin has value because we believe it has value.

As for China banning ownership of Bitcoin....

"Surrender your Bitcoins!".

"Gee, I wish I could. I lost my Recovery Phrase, so I don't have access to them any more. Such a bummer."

And China banning trading of Bitcoin...

Don't use a "Know Your Customer" coin exchange. From my wallet to your wallet is our own business. Or use a privacy based coin and be untraceable.

A hotline to His Billness? Or a guard having a bit of a giggle?

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

"This is Kevin Mitnick calling..."

I got to play liaison & Sherpa for a corporate event where Mr. Mitnick had a speaking engagement. To refresh your memory, 1990's law enforcement was convinced he had the ability to "start a nuclear war by whistling into a pay phone".

Like a good corporate citizen, I suppressed my inner dialogue from saying "Is this where my cell phone melts and the bombs go off" when he called me directly. That would have been poking the bear, and I probably would not have enjoyed the response.

It was an interesting interaction, the details of which are best shared over beverages in private...

Report commissioned by Google says Google isn't to blame for the death of print news

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Joke

Re: Report commissioned by Google

In other surprising news...

"A report commissioned by the Big Bad Wolf found that the Big Bad Wolf was not involved in the collapse of two houses owned by Little Pigs."

Tech scammer who fooled Cisco, Microsoft and Lenovo out of millions jailed for more than seven years

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Go

Re: Often the system doesn't work for VALID claims...

-Shrug- APC sent me several cases of power strips when I gave them my serial numbers. Replaced a bunch of scratch & dent kit that was still functional but was aging from use. No complaints.

Antivirus that mines Ethereum sounds a bit wrong, right? Norton has started selling it

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Thumb Down

Cloudy wallets...

Not your keys, not your coins. 'nuf said.

Congestion or a Christmas cock-up? A Register reader throws himself under the bus

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

An easy $50

I remember those days, way before I landed in tech. Looked up a customer's credit card on the naughty list printed every month on newsprint in a booklet format. Found a match. Called it in. They offered $50 for collecting the card from the customer (for context, minimum wage at the time was $3.35/hr). The card in question happened to belong to a loosely stated buddy of mine.

He surrendered the card and we split the reward.

AWS Free Tier, where's your spending limit? 'I thought I deleted everything but I have been charged $200'

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Go

Privacy.com

Seriously, go to privacy.com. Single use & single vendor credit cards where YOU define the purchase limit. This is totally what you need to take control of spending in an as-a-service world where vendors like AWS just charge away once you provide a credit card number - and hope you won't notice.

Help wanted, work from anywhere ... except if you're located in Colorado

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Megaphone

It is not yours!

Jobs belong to the employer. Not the employee.

Just like everyone one of us is free to move to a different state, businesses are free to hire employees from different states. States that are business friendly will get the jobs, and the tax revenue that comes with them. States that are unfriendly to business...well go figure.

US Treasury wants to treat cryptocurrencies like cash – as in you need to report $10k+ transactions

Marty McFly Bronze badge

Re: The government will shut down Bitcoin, just watch!

>"If you anticipate governments will restrict fiat/crypto conversions in the future, isn't that an argument to stay *out* of crypto completely?"

Fair question. You are assuming the only reason to go to crypto is for investment. Buying/selling goods/services with crypto currency is what the future will hold. People with crypto currency will be free to operate in that space because they already own crypto currency. They can do business independent from government intrusion, oversight, and taxation.

People without crypto currency will be stuck dealing with a fiat monetary system of perpetual inflation that is highly regulated, monitored, and controlled.

That is what is scaring the modern money managers. They could lose their control of the finances of the masses. When you & I agree to exchange crypto for goods & services, and we do so in a private transaction, then that is no one's business but our own.

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

The government will shut down Bitcoin, just watch!

They will send in the troops and they will lay siege to the Bitcoin headquarters. All the BTC servers will be completely disconnected and and held as evidence against those evil cryptocurrency people. Only government controlled & monitored currency will be allowed to continue. This nonsense has to stop!

Only problem is the government just can't seem to find the big building with the BTC logo on the side. (Enter visions of Monty Python searching for the Holy Grail, except now it is government lackeys searching for the elusive Bitcoin headquarters.)

All joking aside...

Cryptocurrencies are inherently a better store of wealth than any fiat currency. They are even better than precious metals. What governments can do is make it more difficult to move between fiat and crypto. That means it is important to get your share of crypto today because tomorrow the door may not be open to you.

Cloudflare stops offering to block LGBTQ webpages

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Mushroom

Thou shall do thine Internet as we decide thou shalt do it!

The problem is Big Tech applying their versions of morality to their centralized monopoly. Today it is LGBTQ, tomorrow it may be something I actually care about. So I had better pay attention today unless I get pushed down the slippery slope tomorrow.

In my opinion, Big Tech has gotten too big. Regardless of which political brand each of us support, outside of any legal authority they silenced a sitting President in January. That exercise of power and control should scare all of us.

Ultimately, I think this LGBTQ filtering change is a good thing - but not for the reasons articulated. The more Big Tech tries to tighten their grip, the more decentralized block-chain technologies will spring up to replace them. For example, take a look at Presearch dot org as a replacement for Google searches.

Every time Big Tech tries to exercise their control, it only serves to drive more innovators to create alternative solutions that are beyond the control of a singular corporate entity.

How do we stamp out the ransomware business model? Ban insurance payouts for one, says ex-GCHQ director

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Go

Companies need to start lying (well, more than they do already)....

Acme Corp pays or doesn't pay the ransom for XYZ ransomware, it doesn't matter. However, they publicly announce they paid the ransom and were unable to recover their files.

The Register and other media publish the story and all the IT folk believe the decryption tool for XYZ ransomware doesn't work. The next company that gets infected by XYZ ransomware won't consider paying the ransom as an option because of the widespread industry belief that it won't work.

Heck, a bunch of companies could get together and simply claim they got hit by XYZ ransomware, paid the ransom, and the decryption was broken. A few CISOs making some announcements and pretty soon no one will make a payment. This forces the attackers to create new ransomware attacks - as even variants would be lumped in with original. Once there is a widespread belief that the attackers are not producing a viable decryption tool, the ransom payments will dry up - regardless of how many systems are actually attacked.

Amazon’s critical Alabama warehouse workers union vote has started … and may be some time

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

If this passes....

....watch how quickly advanced automation is deployed in Amazon.

This is straight out of Amazon's playbook... Use someone else to develop the market & technology, then do it themselves. USPS is a great example. They had the big Amazon contract for a few years - just long enough for Amazon to develop their own shipping service to replace them with.

Same thing will happen here. Thanks, Humans, for getting this warehouse going. We are now replacing 95% of you with automation. We really don't care if the remaining 5% are unionized.

Jobs always belong to the employer, not the employee.

Yes, there's nothing quite like braving the M4 into London on the eve of a bank holiday just to eject a non-bootable floppy

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

Support case notes!

"NSDE" was all you needed to type. Here's a pint to anyone who got paid to troubleshoot that!

Bringing gigabit internet to Rural America requires equitable spectrum access, claims industry body

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Thumb Down

Riiiiight

>"will extend gigabit connectivity to the seven million people who rely on wireless connections to get online."

That is such a false assumption. Crappy Internet service & crappy cell service go hand in hand. This is a wireless spectrum grab. It is a fallacy to think this additional spectrum will suddenly fix the lousy wired Internet service when no nearby transmission towers exist in the first place.

Marty McFly Bronze badge
FAIL

Re: Frozen Hades

Wrong. The world changed. State governments require like for like. So if the copper POTS was originally installed 50 years ago when they could dig a trench without an environmental impact study, then the state requires them to also put the replacement fiber in the ground. They cannot switch to stringing it on existing power poles - which is much cheaper.

This is the crux of the battle between states and telcos - and is the reason why the telcos are asking the government for money if they want it done. The money isn't for the telco's infrastructure (fiber, wires, cables, etc). It is for the compliance with all the government permits, policies, and regulations that keep them from simply digging a trench, laying cable, and pushing the dirt back in.

Meanwhile, the blame game will continue with fingers pointing and both sides shouting "It's not me". It all falls on deaf ears....because, well, those of us in the sticks don't have enough bandwidth to hear the audio....

California bans website 'dark patterns', confusing language when opting out of having your personal info sold

Marty McFly Bronze badge

Re: Confusing Language

Point made about the lawyers & accountants initiative. However, I don't think it applies to these data slurping individuals. They have their used-car sales career to fall back on.

Marty McFly Bronze badge

"Don't not sell my data..."

If that doesn't explain the slimy & deceptive nature of the data business, I don't know what does.

Apple's app transparency rules: Google's privacy labels for Chrome and Search on iOS highlighted by DuckDuckGo

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Go

Now on to presearch.org

Beyond duckduckgo... Check out presearch.org. Private & decentralized. Block chain based.

I haven't bought new pants for years, why do I have to keep buying new PCs?

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

Fond memory...

My uncle built small block Chevy race motors for boats, one of his motors even held a class world record in the 1970's. Fast in his world was 7000 RPM screaming through open headers. He could not understand how a computer could keep up with such a beast. Even when I explained that motor is only really operating at around 115 hertz and computers (at the time) were just starting to crack a billion hertz.

I miss my uncle and his genuine old school knowledge, so icon chosen accordingly.

US consumer protection bureau goes after tech support scammers' alleged payments processor

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

Symantec - LOL!

I say Bravo Sierra! No way they pulled off the scam posing as Symantec. Not one single elderly person knows what company that is (was). What I do believe is they posed as "Norton", which is only a brand name. That was the chronic problem that company always faced - outside of the tech world, "Symantec" was an unknown. But "Peter Norton, Utilities Expert", there is a name and face on a yellow box that you can trust. LOL!

The 40-Year-Old Version: ZX81's sleek plastic case shows no sign of middle-aged spread

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Pint

Avoid if at all possible...

...tapping in code from this month's magazine. Always wait for next month when the inevitable correction to the code is published.

Although troubleshooting those typos became laid the foundation for the career I have today, so I cannot complain too much. Cheers!

Microsoft previews Windows Server 2022: Someone took a spanner to core plumbing features

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Coat

>"criminality with regards to data theft"

You failed at the corporate speak. It is properly stated as "Monetizing the user after the sale"

Linus Torvalds went six days without electricity, swears smaller 5.12 kernel is co-incidental

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

Re: Wonder which part of Portland he's in...

I live in NW Oregon, out in the puckerberries. Yeah, we lost power a few times. Fired up the generator and kept working. I was surprised at the extent of the impact on the urban/suburbs neighborhoods when their systems of support went away for a few days.

Oh, and if you have seen Portland on the news any time over the past year... Just know that is not Oregon. That is an alternate reality from the rest of the state. Regular folks have pretty much abandoned the city to the graffiti 'artists' and 'urban outdoorsmen'. The moderate climate makes a great spot for an extended protest season. With spring arriving those should be starting again soon.

Zuck chucks Myanmar military out of Facebook and Instagram

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Thumb Down

Big Tech, Big Ego

When companies start taking sides in a polarized debate, they may win the hearts of one side, but they alienate the other side. History inevitably looks back and notes that is the start of the decline for the company. They lose sight of their profit motive and another company will move in to seize the opportunity.

With Big Tech's Ego run amuck, watch for decentralized alternatives built on block chain technology to start taking their place. It won't be overnight, but it will be quick enough.

A word to the Wyse: Smoking cigars in the office is very bad for you... and your monitor

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Thumb Up

Dishwasher

Long time ago in a career now far away, I was rehabilitating x386 PCs which had served in restaurants, often near the fryers and other such equipment. I would completely disassemble the PC and put the parts in the break room dishwasher. As long as everything was thoroughly dry, I usually had success at bringing it back to life.

Red Hat returns with another peace offering in the wake of the CentOS Stream affair: More free stuff

Marty McFly Bronze badge
FAIL

Re: Too late, trust has gone.

That really is the issue. Trust is always earned and should be cherished by those who have it. When that trust is lost it is difficult to regain. It doesn't matter if we are talking about Linux distros or love life.

RH took 'until death do us part' wedding vows with the CentOS crowd, and then decided to file for divorce. Doesn't matter what they say now, the bedroom life will never be the same.

Federal Reserve falls over in massive hours-long tech outage, knocks down US inter-bank transfer system

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Holmes

Crazy idea

If only there was some sort of decentralized electronic currency we could use instead. It could be built using a blockchain and cryptography. Someone should invent that, then we won't have to worry about the Feds computers going down.

With computer brains in short supply, President Biden orders 100-day probe into semiconductor drought

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

Car companies screwed up....

They underestimated demand. They build cars with a just-in-time-delivery parts system. It literally takes 90 days for raw materials to become chips, it cannot be done any quicker. The car companies screwed up their estimated vehicle production, canceled chip orders, and freed up the chip manufactures to produce other products.

In short, they gave up their place in line, and it bit them in the butt. Not government's problem to solve.

So, bye-bye mighty nerd haven Fry’s, took Silicon to the Valley... and now you must die

Marty McFly Bronze badge

Re: Treating Customers Like Criminals

My one and only visit to Fry's. Long line waiting to get receipts checked. I walked right past it and loudly stated "It is an illegal search, folks" as I walked out the door with my purchases. I never glanced back to see how many people followed me.

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Flame

Re: IMO, Fry's failed in 1996 ...

Spot on. They insisted on searching customers on the way out the door.

Sure, Costco does it. Costco is also a membership business, and agreeing to be searched is part of the membership agreement. Fry's is not a membership business.

They have no legal right to review a customer's receipt AFTER the transaction has concluded. The items purchased have become personal property and they are carried on my person. If there is a concern about the transaction it must be addressed at the time of the transaction (cash register) not at the exit to the store.

Cool store to shop at, but that pissed me off. That was 20 years ago and I never went back. Frankly I thought they folded a long time ago. Good riddance.

Ever felt that a few big tech companies are following you around the internet? That's because ... they are

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Go

We are all techies here...

So I don't need to explain the value of each of these at avoiding tracking...

- Run a Pi-Hole. It is so cheap & easy, there is no reason not to. Shocking how much crap is coming from a home network, especially all the IoT devices. Just what is my SmartTV sharing when the input is set to HDMI1?

- Use a VPN. Some of them allow a DD-WRT router to make the tunnel - so one device license and everything else funnels through.

- Presearch.org I started using it two weeks ago. It is surprisingly good. Built on blockchain and is decentralized. So it is impossible for big tech's "Censorship Culture" to tamper with.

NASA sends nuclear tank 293 million miles to Mars, misses landing spot by just five metres. Now watch its video

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Megaphone

Said it before...

To the total sum of human knowledge, Mars is a planet entirely populated by robots. This video is evidence the robot population continues to be repopulated from a neighboring planet as older robots expire. This is really the biggest threat to humanity, not Covid, Trump, or anything else. I don't know why our news media is not making a bigger deal out of this. Our planet could be next for robot colonization!

Microsoft staffers restive as annual employee poll lands – without questions about compensation

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

Location, location, location

>"their senior colleagues’ pay packets are so fat, they’ve driven the cost of living sky-high in tech-centric spots around Seattle and San Francisco"

Covid is taking us down this road with the complimentary work-from-home trial the past year. Just wait until no more openings are available in SEA or SFO. All new headcount will be remote employees in Sheboyganville with the prevailing cost of living adjusted accordingly. Worried about productivity?? They can get 2x or 3x the headcount for the same price, so who cares if they are slackers at home. We'll weed them out eventually in any case.

Facebook and Apple are toying with us, and it's scarcely believable

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Happy

Re: Point

Big tech has shot themselves in the head with their excessive control and mind numbing legal policies - see Parler, etc, from January. That was the starter's gun at the next technology footrace. Watch for the next wave to be decentralized and based off block-chain. There simply will not be a central 'off switch' operated at the whims of the tyrannical.

Bitcoin is a great example. Government & banks have been trying to kill it for over a decade. It simply cannot be killed. There is no plug to pull, no company to fine/break up/shut down.

Look at Presearch.org. No, it is not going to topple Google search today or tomorrow. But the seed is planted from which the next big tree may grow.

Planespotters’ weekends turn traumatic as engine pieces fall from the sky in the Netherlands and the US

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

You do know...

...that Boeing makes the planes and not the engines, right? The fact that both aircraft landed safely with no injury to those on-board is a testament to the quality of the aircraft.

Doctor, I think I have an HDMI: Apple starts investigating M1 Mac Mini graphics issues

Marty McFly Bronze badge
FAIL

Not just the M1

My Mac Mini i7 2018 went tits-up on the HDMI with my LG 4k display when Big Sur updated. Problem is no display at all - Mini & display fail to acknowledge each other. Ended up running the display off a 4k USB-C dongle.

Nope, not the cable or the port. The HDMI port works just fine on other monitors, and the cable works just fine with the USB-C dongle. Only conclusion is Apple crapped on something in the OS update.

Nurserycam horror show: 'Secure' daycare video monitoring product beamed DVR admin creds to all users

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Coat

Reclassified...

I thought the purpose of the nursery cam was to catch, record, and document any negligence in child care by the nursery. If that is the real purpose of the product, then it would seem the more eyes on the video, the better.

Bug now becomes Feature. Plus a competitive differentiator.

Who needs secure products when you have good marketing department?

Samsung floats autonomous ships as ready to sail in 2022

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

How reliable are a ship's mechanical systems?

It is the ocean. Salt water. Sun & weather exposure. Stuff breaks. I'm not worried about the computerized navigation controls. I'm thinking about the unexpected maintenance problem that happens 1000 miles from any land.

Go watch some documentaries about life on a cargo ship. The daily routine is repeatedly making sure everything works (including things like refrigeration on cargo containers), and then fixing it when it doesn't. There is a certain amount of intelligence needed to recognize a problem before it happens and I don't think automated ships can perform that.

The laptop you bought in 2020 may stop you buying a car in 2021: Chips are going short

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Holmes

Re: FCA

Ah, splitting hairs here! Stelantis was established on January 16th. The production cuts were announced January 14th. So what I said was true for the date of the shutdown.

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Facepalm

Old news, Reg!

Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) shut down their Brampton, Ontario plant (Dodge Challenger, Charger, & 300) and Toluca, Mexico plant (Jeep Compass) back in mid-January due to chip shortages.

Amazon deploys AI cameras inside delivery vans, misspells 'surveillance' as 'safety' in reason why

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Thumb Up

Excellent!

Does this mean when the Amazon driver marks my delivery "Unable to access front door" that there will be proof they didn't even drive to my house?

(No, I'm not kidding. I get that all the time. They claim the front door is not accessible when they never even pull in the driveway or attempt delivery.)

We've got some really bad news about Apple's privacy measures, Google tells iOS app devs: It'll hurt your Google ad revenue

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Meh

Re: It will just be like the Whatsapp app

A tipping point is coming where the value of privacy will outweigh the value of some stupid social media app. If the app asks for more than what I think it needs, I just delete the app.

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Thumb Up

Re: Pi-Hole

Best piece of kit on my network. It is absolutely shocking the amount of 'phone home' which goes on from all the little widgets that are not in use. "Smart" TV talking to the mothership when no 'smart' features are enabled and it is on HDMI1 - what the heck is it reporting??

As for advertisements... I find it no small coincidence that the Chrome & Firefox are suddenly hot on DNS over HTTPS (DoH). That goes right around my local DNS which is filtering their ads & trackers. Of course, they say it is to keep the ISP from snooping.... Right. Because the ISP is who slurps & sells data on me - not Google. So far the browsers still allow me to turn off DoH, I dread the day they insist on owning my browser DNS.

Cisco intros desktop switches, one with USB-C to power your laptop

Marty McFly Bronze badge
FAIL

Launched a year too late...

Not sure Cisco noticed... A huge percentage of the workforce just to sent to work remote. And they are not coming back to the big office. Ever.

If the remaining office based users need more bandwidth, they will just toss a patch cable over the cube wall and pick their choice of empty desks to get bandwidth from.

What's a COVID-19 outbreak? Amazon gets all Trumpy over Alabama warehouse workers' mail-in vote to form a union

Marty McFly Bronze badge
Holmes

Short term gain...

Oh, you want to unionize and then demand higher wages. No problem. The cost of labor has now increased to the point where robotics makes more sense financially. We now need 150 unionized employees to do what 1500 did previously.

Right, in 2018 the county spent $3.3M on road work and pay incentives to Amazon, including giving part of the city's occupational tax collected from employees to the company. They capped permit & business license fees for Amazon too. And there were "undisclosed incentives" involved.

Congratulations to the new Union! You just incentivized Amazon to automate the jobs out of existence. Guess the politicians will need to answer to the voters now.

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