* Posts by Peter

279 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Apr 2007


TJX employee fired for exposing shoddy security practices

Peter Gold badge

Easy solution: almost there

I'm actually with an earlier poster - we're no longer dealing with a technology problem, this is a human problem. The issue with the above "Easy solution" is that it doesn't create personal responsibility and is thus unlikely to work. Example: what changed after MS got YAF (Yet Another Fine)? Exactly, nada, nothing. The moment you pull directors from behind that legal shield a company represents and make them PERSONALLY liable for such offenses, THEN matters will change.

The guys at the top need to know that they are going to get personally hit before they will act, at the moment it's still too easy for incompetents to hide behind "I didn't know" (Enron defense) and sacking some poor shlob to he/she leaves and takes the blame away. Nothing beats the risk of personally having to take the rap to focus someone's attention.

It's a human problem - not technical.

RIAA ordered to shell out $100k for P2P witch hunt

Peter Gold badge

The Jamie Thomas case goes probably back to trial.

It appears the Fat Lady has re-appeared for an encore in the Jamie Thomas case, so the RIAA may end up with a problem there as well:

See http://news.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/05/15/1742257

In a development that must have caused much swearing in the RIAA camp, the following notice emerged:

"The judge in Capitol Records v. Thomas said today he's thinking about granting a new trial because he may have committed a 'manifest error of law' in his jury instructions. He says that his instruction that simply uploading music to a P2P network without any proof that anyone actually downloaded it may conflict with a case in the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals that said 'infringement of [the distribution right] requires an actual dissemination.

Maybe they can hire Steve Ballmer to do that chair throwing?

Life a mess? The Moderatrix can help

Peter Gold badge

According to Shoe (the cartoon)..

.. I already have the answer to "what is a good name for a sushi bar for lawyers".

It's Sosumi..

European manned spaceflight plan proposed

Peter Gold badge

Problem is already solved - in Switzerland

Just go to http://www.jet-man.com/prod/index_en.html and find a way to carry a lot more oxygen :-)

NZ bank robber stashes loot where the sun don't shine

Peter Gold badge

Did I miss anything?

Sticky fingers (aargh)

You can NOT take that to the bank

A real hold-up

He's in deep shit

It was all it was cracked up to be

Look ma, no hands..

all right, all right. I'm going already.

Don't get so tight arsed about it.

BOFH: Shiny new computer room

Peter Gold badge

@Kevin Fields

Think, think. It's an emergency move, lots of designs going round, confusion all around. Chaos is your friend. *Nobody* will spot a design change, and a new false wall is quick to add to any drawing. If it's an *old* gov building it will also have high ceilings, which means you could elevate the floors everywhere and install secret corridors underneath (or places to hide skeletons, or beer).

Last but not least you would have to ensure a new surveillance system is put in place (and access control) which is plenty of scope to sink some "creative modifications".

You just have to move the expenditure to another budget so it looks you remained well within your expected 20% overrun while someone else shot their budget and will have to do without a pool table in their "creative room" for a year and management will have to sit on crates during board meetings :-).

How to destroy 60 hard drives an hour

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@ Adrian Esdaile

"I defy anyone to read from platters in a U shape"

Oh really? One word: U-tube. :-)

Peter Gold badge

You obviously never *tried* drilling..

I have drilled a drive once (for destruction reasons), but those platters are fscking hard, maybe you need a masonry drill - but that doesn' cut through the case.

Harddisks are amazingly tough things to destroy. For simple end user block, all you need to do it to spin it up and then drop (i.e. its head is unparked so you create a head crash), but that is easy for a recovery company - you need real physical damage to the platters before you can be sure it'll be hard work.

As for sledgehammer use - that doesn't guarantee unreadable platters but it's quite fun in a destructive sort of way. And you sure as hell won't do 60 an hour :-).

Microsoft walks away from Yahoo!

Peter Gold badge

I think Ballmer is very worried about Google + Yahoo

The way I read the letter it's an attempt to poison the shareholders for any collaboration with Google.

Ballmer must be worried about that possibility if he tries to talk it down the way he does in his letter, Yahoo should certainly pursue this further.

Customers give Dell the finger over keyboard screw-up

Peter Gold badge

No, no, no, It's SUPPOSED to be that way.

For chrissakes, don't you learn history at school? The whole idea behind the QWERTY layout is to SLOW DOWN your typing, so from an engineering point of view, Dell has abundantly delivered on requirement with those keyboards.

If you want fast entry you better switch to DVORAK or stop complaining.

[for those challenged in the humour department, this was a joke. It's Friday. Relax. Go for a drink. Shag someone. Chill. Whatever. And I'll even leave the pun in for you. Do read it again.]

Boris backs weed for pain relief

Peter Gold badge

@ Sceptical Bastard

Having experienced Ken for his two tenures and the, um, "alternative" view of the Universe he holds suggests that ANYONE will do better. And Boris isn't as dumb as he appears - the act is convincing until you read his writings..

I'd vote for Boris.

'We could wake up smarter' - Ballmer hints at Win XP reprieve

Peter Gold badge

He means: if we make enough money from XP

I quite like that one. It's a quite sneaky, underhand suggestion that MS *may* just leave XP alive if they make enough money out of it.


Sysadmins get Quake tools

Peter Gold badge

This actually has other uses

You know the way people "walk" through data in SP movies? Johnny Mnemonic, Matrix etc. (less the Minority Report, that was more an early version iPod Touch GUI)?

If you think about it, a massive, interoperable world like Second Life has the potential to become just that if one could enter a 'portal' and then browse (or come up with some process to transfer between systems, thus presenrving the neutrality and diversity of the Net which is a sort of resilience in itself. All you need is a model to represent interconnects, systems files etc - we have planets, streets, tunnels - whatever. Once you have the protocol defined you can leave it open how the item is actually represented so you have a default which can be changed, and you could pull stunts like teleporting etc (shortcuts).

Just musing...

Microsoft rolls out Live Mesh preview

Peter Gold badge
Thumb Down

Yeah, I *so* want all my private data online..

Sure, I'd want everything in sync, so even when a device gets nabbed it'll stay up to date. Failing that, I naturally want such data to be online, fully protected by the fearsome Microsoft security measures who carry a sterling reputation of brilliantly talking about it in presentations to clueless VIPs.

You moved the mouse, allow/deny?

Not in a gazillion years.

Congo lynch mobs attack penis-snatching sorcerers

Peter Gold badge

They're just dicking around..

Look at the bright side: it may reduce instances of Repetitive Stain Injury..

Mine's the flasher Mac (because I still can :-).

Ubuntu man Shuttleworth dissects Hardy Heron's arrival

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@ Dangerous Dave

Simple answer: DON'T install just yet, just use the boot disk. It'll be much slower, but it gives you a good shot at trying what works. If you're *very* unlucky you'll get issues on screen size, set it manually on bootup and try again.

Once you have established if it works you can go ahead. In the case of an existing Windows setup I'd recommend running a defrag first so that the existing Windows "I want it all" partition can be resized. You will end up with a dual booting system.

Good luck!.

In-flight calling given lukewarm reception

Peter Gold badge

@ Graham Marsden

The ejector seat idea is great, especially if the roof remains closed.

Mine's the one with "coroner" on the back..

Women love chocolate more than password security

Peter Gold badge

Password awareness rising - rest down

I can't count how often I managed to tailgate into buildings. And then people get upset when they try to follow me in and I ask them for their badge..

However, I had someone apologise after saying "Are you serious?" first when he realised exactly what could have happened if I had NOT asked - he now does it himself. If you remain polite and courteous you CAN educate people..

Dubai impounds cable slicing ships

Peter Gold badge

Strangly apt description ..

"Incompetent seamen" - yeah, that must be genetic.

The lab coat, thanks.

Local council uses snooping laws to spy on three-year-old

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That's why applications need legal review

This would not have happened if a judge had to sign off the application - why would this be different from a search warrant?

London store brews £50-a-poop cat-crap coffee

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@ Finally, concrete proof

I did. Nothing else gets rid of the crap taste, so what 's your problem again?