* Posts by Dug Stokes

20 publicly visible posts • joined 1 Mar 2008

KCOM Group results hit by Phones4U woes

Dug Stokes

That explains why Eclipse has sucked lately

They added a Fair Usage Policy back in August, put in bandwidth-squishing taking speeds from 15mbps down to <2mbps for heavy users, and employed idiots on the support lines who just say anything to get you off the phone. Eclipse is just another crappy ISP now, wondered why it had happened, seems KCOM is to blame.

O2 kicks out Ericsson server for breaking its network

Dug Stokes

Can someone explain this one?

"...it was not the same fault that cut off millions of customers in July."


"We are not prepared to risk this happening to our customers for a third time,"


That sounds like an out-and-out lie to me.

SimCity to return after 10-year holiday

Dug Stokes

Re: Now they're redoing this

There's always OpenTT.

And it's Micropolis, not Metropolis; that's where spiderman came from.

Ofcom maps out what 'psychics' are allowed to do on TV

Dug Stokes

Many of these "psychics" believes it too, and honestly have convinced themselves they are doing a good service. Can you be convinced that religious leaders haven't done the same?

And I'm sure there are many religious leaders who do suspect they are only there to hoodwink people.

If Joe Power appeared on screen talking about helping the sick, these Ofcom rules on "Psychics" wouldn't apply anyway; so it's a null point.

It works both ways, but at least this is a start. In my opinion, the first country to ban non-educational religious broadcast will be a big step forward for logic and humanity.

BT, Scotland Yard form copper theft crackdown supersquad

Dug Stokes


Data going via a different exchange to the phone? Is this why almost every month my phone line is dead for two days, and there's queues on the road because of the works - but my internet is still working absolutely fine?

Never thought I'd learn something on El Reg. Thanks for the info!

UN set to dump GMT for tech-friendly Atomic Time

Dug Stokes

How much will it cost to have every system in the world updated with the new timezone data? Will Microsoft supply the millions of people with Windows XP? And the Unix Timezone data is being rehosted - so who's going to pay for it all?

If we're going to change time, can't we change it to something more logical?

Beeb measures Blighty in doormats

Dug Stokes
Thumb Down


Don't get me started on Sulfur. It might be the 'standard' (damn you French), but even 'Sulfur' is being used in Exams, and I spotted it on the Daily Mail the other day.

Next it'll be 'program'...

Dubstep ringtone wins Nokia compo

Dug Stokes

Is it me or does 'Nokia New Generation v2' sound like background music from "Pages from Ceefax"...

Ah, I miss that show.

Schoolteachers can't teach our kids to code, say engineers

Dug Stokes

Sorry, what? Didn't The Register recently report that degrees were unnecessary for Computing positions?

Now claiming that teaching staff can't possible know how to teach programming without having a degree?

What tosh.

I'm a bit bitter; having taught programming at a secondary school in after school clubs. Teaching staff only taught ICT, despite there being a lot of enthusiasm to do more.

Veggies tricked into dating meat-gobbling escorts

Dug Stokes

All these people claiming that it's so easy to add in this filter in the SQL are right - but missing the point.

That'd severely decrease the number of profiles on the site; less profiles, so it's less popular, meaning less people will visit or come back.

This is no different from 'dating sites' which steal profiles/pictures from other sites, often with fake info. A quick google for "Dating site stole my picture" (without quotes) reveals this happens a lot. I'm sure all these companies claim these are real users stealing others' info; I think we can all safely assume this isn't always the case.

Twitter discovers MMS for photo tweeting

Dug Stokes

mms to email?

Most phones that support MMS will allow you to send to an email address.

Do Twitter not realise this? There's no need for expensive shortcodes.

I've been using it for a while, but the exorbitant cost has precluded me from using it for any real purpose.

Still, it is handy.

US survey: 1 in 5 telecommuters work an hour or less a day

Dug Stokes

I was going to post a similar experience - I work harder from home than I did trying not to in the office.

Suit settled, PS3 hacker donates $10,000 to EFF

Dug Stokes

To the Self-Righteous Whiner

Sony removed the OtherOS feature from their new slim models BEFORE GeoHot even started working on this.

Try again.

Red Dwarf to blast off on new adventure

Dug Stokes

Series 7 should've been a spinoff

if Series 7 and on wasn't called "Red Dwarf" but "Red Dwarf: Back in the sh!theap", then I don't think any of the fans would be pissed what they did next.

They should've done the same thing with Scrubs too.

Hey, it worked for Frasier, right?

How extreme is your pr0n? Depends on your lawyer

Dug Stokes

I know it's Wikipedia; but...

"There is a hoax Internet viral video entitled BME Pain Olympics: Final Round that has nothing to do with the actual Pain Olympics. It has been viewed and promoted by a large number of Web surfers and popular bloggers such as Joe Rogan and has been the subject of reaction videos on sites including YouTube. In the video, two men are seen performing genital self-mutilation (including using a meat cleaver) set to the song "Livin' Like a Zombie" by Mortification. The original video, hosted on BMEzine, displays a message at the end confirming it is fake; however, most of the other versions of the video on other websites do not have that message at the end. According to Shannon Larratt, the creator of the video, the two "competitors" (who are actually the same person) used prosthetic makeup and the video contains no actual body modification."

- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pain_Olympics

Apple tweaks privacy policy to juice location tracking

Dug Stokes

Disabling location?

Nowhere does it say that disabling location tracking will stop Apple finding out where you are. Since there is both GPS and AGPS systems available now; (satellites and via towers; and disabling towers would disable the phone); and that you've legally agreed to Apple and their friends having constant access to your location; who's to say that disabling this option for Apple applications or for the system will disable Apple having your location?

Business host DataGate vanishes

Dug Stokes

Nightmare day

Thanks Blane. Had tried to get my customer to do this last year when they changed servers due to insane downtime and backups not having been working properly for months.

They're a nightmare to deal with, difficult to contact on the phone, refuse to give up domains when you move to other companies, have terrible uptime and occasionally make changes to servers and unplanned downtime without even bothering to notify you.

Today was indicitive of the typical lazy attitude of Datagate.net.uk and as usual, impossible to get hold of by phone.

They even say on their twitter it was temporary and their blog said it would be fixed in twenty minutes. They've now jumped on the twitter bandwagon to try and clear their name: http://twitter.com/datagate_ltd

Purely from a technical point of view, as Wand106 said, no redundancy, and without properly differently located DNS servers this was inevitable.

Obviously muggings here had to take time out just to help sort out the mess this bunch of amateurs made, for an excellent and understanding client unfortuately stuck with them.

Well, thats my opinion anyway. (hopefully that clears any chance of slander charges...)

Dug Stokes

Datagate suck

It doesn't help that both of Datagate's DNS servers are in the same location, so no-one can get to their site.

No-ones been able to contact them, and apparently Nominet have had a lot of complaints.

One of my clients have been trying for ages to move away from them but they wouldn't let him have his own domain. Wish he'd done a Nominet dispute when I told him to, now there's little anyone can do.

Nominet are being helpful. There's Datagate's blog at http://datagate.wordpress.com/ but it's worse than useless. They suggested 15-20 minutes nearly three hours ago.


Prime Minister's email takes month off

Dug Stokes

PM's Blackberry Stolen?

Maybe its to do with this?

The Times is today reporting a January incident in which a top aide to Prime Minister Gordon Brown discovered his BlackBerry missing from his hotel room after spending the night with an attractive woman who approached him in a Shanghai disco. Seems this was a run-of-the-mill BlackBerry without any encryption, only a simple password lock. The greatest fear is that, even if the device did not contain any sensitive messages at the time, there was likely enough information on board for a hostile intelligence service to snake its way deep into Downing Street's email servers. The aide was 'informally reprimanded.'"


Filesharers petition Downing Street on 'three strikes'

Dug Stokes

It's an unworkable proposal (Petition Author)

I'm the author of the petition. Firstly I'd like to say I don't imagine this petition will do much, or create much of a response but its one way to get some interest in the matter and anything is worth a shot.

I don't imagine ISPs will implement anything more than the QoS, filtering and throttling. I expect the RIAA, MPAA and others will probably add more honeypots and so on.

What this petition is about is ISPs being able to disconnect your internet because of cease & desist letters without legal proof. I know its completely up to the ISP whether they continue your contract at present when it comes to an unsubstantated claim, but this could make it a standard policy.

Whether or not you are a sharing copyrighted files or whatever is not the point, its that these claims don't have to be substainted and in a standard policy even a few emails to one of these ISPs might be enough to have you disconnected. If so, then we're at the stage of having problems with disgrunted employees and enemies causing this kind of problem with fake emails and so on.

There's plenty of reasons why this isn't a good policy. If we can make more people aware of this then hopefully something more sensible can be done, like treating the ISP as a common courier and preferably overhaling the whole copyright system to something more sensible that works.

I don't really want to get too personally involved with any arguments but its definately interesting listening to others' comments. If anyone has any great ideas or would really really REALLY like to contact me, you can find my address on my website.

Thanks for the interesting discussion.

Dug Stokes