* Posts by vincent himpe

786 publicly visible posts • joined 13 Aug 2006


Security? Working servers? Who needs those when you can have a shiny floor?

vincent himpe

Long ago, in a design center far far away .. (chip design that is. running on Calma and ComputerVision systems driven by a Data General Nova . this is late 80's)

One day we found that the computer running the workstations had rebooted. Shruggingly written off as a one-time event. A week later the same happened. And the week thereafter and the week thereafter ...

Every thursday morning we found the machine had restarted. Strange. Service was called in and they couldn't find anything wrong. It couldn't be a scheduled job : the thing didn't have a clock or a way to schedule things. Files were saved with a version number that incremented upon every save. No time/date stamp.

Next thursday the sysop stayed late to monitor the machine from his desk in the aquarium. This was the era where the computer rooms were all floor to ceiling glass walls so you could proudly display the hardware to visitors. We users called it the aquarium. The sysop always said the fish were on the outside.

Somewhere late the cleaning crew for the office got in and sure enough: one of the cleaners entered the "aquarium" and started dusting. The nova machine had a nice ledge with a bunch of toggle buttons. out comes the dusting brush .... and mystery solved. It turned out there was a problem with the machine. One of the toggles was a halt/reset and it was a bit "sensitive". They replaced that front panel , and then put a piece of perspex over it, and told the cleaners to only collect the printouts but not dust anything in there.

Note : if i remeber correctly this things was a Nova 3

Linux 6.4 debuts after literally unremarkable development push

vincent himpe


Pulse code modulation central intelligance agency ?


People Cant Memorise Computer Industry Acronyms ?

The Balthazar laptop: An all-European RISC-V Free Hardware computer

vincent himpe

Re: escape meta alt ctrl shift

meh, why all those keys ? use a stenograph keyboard. better even : only a 1 and 0 key. use binary encoded ascii.

Loathsome eighties ladder-climber levelled by a custom DOS prompt

vincent himpe

Re: When I were a lad

ones and zero's. sometimes we didn't even have zero's, we had to use the letter o. or i if we ran out of 1's.

Laugh all you want. There will be a year of the Linux desktop

vincent himpe

Sure ...

The day commercial software has been ported to it.

There simply is too much software that is windows only. And no, alternatives are not an option. Businesses use application xyz and will not switch to something different. The invested time and money and retraining is simply too large and disruptive. Hardware and OS is much cheaper than retraining the workforce

More than 4 in 10 PCs still can't upgrade to Windows 11

vincent himpe

Re: Nothing much against Win11 but can't see the point!

Os's don't have any value. The programs that run on it do. The OS is nothing but a layer between the hardware and applications , manages memory , storage, peripherals, a user interface and connectivity. Most of it (except the user interface) is invisible.

A perfect operating system would completely stay out of my way, let me run the applications i need, keep my data secure ( not only from external influences but also from hardware failures). It would eb invisible, need no configuration and just work. Windows 10 Enterprise comes pretty darn close.

I use the OS needed for the task at hand. I run NX, Solidworks, Altium and a bunch of other CAD and technical software. Windows. 7 year old Zbook G3 Win10. works like a champ.

I surf the internet , do online banking , create some videos and edit some photos : MacOs on a Mac ( a used one, 2015 model)

Social media and other spielerei : ipad

Phone ? that's for making phone calls. (and email / text if really needed, or the odd quick picture)

Windows 11 ? no thanks. Both my laptops are not able to run it. Don't need it, the applications run fine on 10. They even run on 7. So until the performance really becomes sluggish , or the applications absolutely need 11 , there will be no hardware upgrade. And if there is an upgrade to new hardware, by then there will be machines available that can run it.

Linux kernel's eBPF feature put to unexpected new uses

vincent himpe

oh goody

read mouse coordinates, alter to the location of the "YES" button then send click ,or spacebar . keylogger ? check !

Ransomware gang threatens 1m-plus medical record leak

vincent himpe

most vulnerable

the patients ? or the hospitals ?

The patients have no say in this. it's the stewards of the data

PyPI warns of first-ever phishing campaign against its users

vincent himpe

it's python

pythonesue should be physhing...

Python tops programming love list – but if you want a job, learn SQL

vincent himpe

what ?

no Ook ?

what has the world become.

GitHub Copilot may be perfect for cheating CompSci programming exercises

vincent himpe

Re: how many times has your boss asked you

ah ,maintaining slovakias prime lens manufacturers codebase. Father Jack will drink to that !

vincent himpe

how many times has your boss asked you

- to write a recursive Fibonacci sieve ?

- hand calculate the eigenvector of a matrix ?

- solve an integral ?

- make a perfect 1inchx1cinhx1inch cube using nothing but a hacksaw , a file and a ruler. ?

the answer : NEVER

Industry spends billions on dollar to have cutting edge tools to do that work. Draft it in solidworks, send it to CNC.

Copilot is nothing but a tool that does the tedious repetitive stuff, so you can focus on the real work. So yeah, allow it in the classroom. Teach them how to use it to their advantage.

Too much time in education is spent in memorizing stuff that can easily be looked up, and solving little meaningless puzzles. You might as well fill out the sudoku and crosswords.

Teach the APPLICATION of things and show how it is used in the real world.

Drop a bunch of abstract formula and the students can solve them. Give them a real world problem and they don't even know what formula apply.

Microsoft looks beyond the US with Windows Subsystem for Android

vincent himpe


now we'll have to wipe flappy bird off the machine , next to minesweeper and clippy...

Australian wasps threaten another passenger plane, with help from COVID-19

vincent himpe

archaic technology

there really is nothing better these days ?

Self closing pitot tube ? once on the ground the opening closes itself so nothing can get in, not even dust.

Airpressure opens it. A sensor lets you know the tube did not open. Five fold reduntant sensors so if one malfunctions the flight can proceed. As a plane speeds up on the runway the air pressure opens the entrance. There could be a motorized override to perform selfcheck or open in case of issues. Airpressure and motor should perform an active open function. Motor can not "close" the intake. if the intake does not close after landing : flag maintenance error.

i don't know. just freewheeling here.

Janet Jackson music video declared a cybersecurity exploit

vincent himpe

So it is ...

a brown note. the harddisk craps itself.

Businesses should dump Windows for the Linux desktop

vincent himpe

i see two root causes

- no testing of the applications : blame on the city authorities

- apps not running on other browser : blame on browser makers. Yes, you read that right. Browser makers.

vincent himpe

first convince all application makers to port their stuff to linux

Then we'll talk.

Linux on the desktop works if all you do is browse the web, write letter , dabble in spreadsheets, and email and some video conf. Code writing and developing for linux will work fine as well.

Step outside that and its crickets. Heavy cad (mechanical , board design , electronics) , development tools for fpga and processors, debuggers, emulators, tracers, test equipment . It's windows and windows only. You may find some niche stuff but you are shortchanging yourself if you go that route, those tools are not up to par with the real thing. The industrial stuff is all windows based. and that stuff does not work well under wine or even in a virtual machine. CAD heavily relies on workstation grade graphics cards like Quadro's. You don't want layers of foreign software in between. Quadro's are bought because of their specific drivers for the high-end applications.

General Motors charges mandatory $1,500 fee for three years of optional car features

vincent himpe

milk the cow

That is what manufacturers are gunning for : milking the cow. Soon there will be a day where even furniture will be on subscription. Wanna sit on the chair to eat breakfast ? Pay to retract the huge screw sticking out of the middle of the seat. Pay per minute. Don't pay in time and the chair will literally screw you.

India's central bank calls for cryptocurrency ban

vincent himpe

I'll trade 1kg of fishes (head and tail removed) for 1kg of bread.

anything else is not worth the paper it is printed on or the flipflops that store the bits...

Dmitry Rogozin sacked as boss of Russian space agency Roscosmos

vincent himpe

the trampoline works ...

CP/M's open-source status clarified after 21 years

vincent himpe

Gary Lives !

At least his OS does ... time to dust of my PL/M manual ...

A language where you can write things like

if if = then then then = else else else = if

There are three variables : if, then and else. The parser understands what is an operand and what is a variable. It also understands when = means "assign" and when it means "compare" . Take that, c and all those other language that still cannot make that distinction.

Twitter sues Musk: He can't just 'change his mind, trash the company, walk away'

vincent himpe

not taking anyone's side here. but why is it so hard for twitter to give the numbers ? you'd think that a company that is monetizing data mining (that's what all social media platforms do ) would know exactly what is going on so they can optimize revenue.

FYI: BMW puts heated seats, other features behind paywall

vincent himpe

as long as the plane comes with a couple of air to surface missiles.... get the riffraff off the road and out of my way

vincent himpe

well... there's gas , and road tax. they are recurring costs to use the car you already paid for...

typed from my smartphone , on a cellphone subscription and other subscriptions

it's become and endless "milk the cow" game and finding more ways to milk.

vincent himpe

if you don't pay in summer they turn them ON

Hive to pull the plug on smart home gadgets by 2025

vincent himpe

cloud computing ?

CLOWN computing !

i learned this long ago. i had a roku 1001 audio player. they pulled the plug on it and decided to go the video way.

from then on : no more devices that need the internet.

Surveillance ? get a NVR on-premises. yes you can contact it from the outside world , but there is no command and control server. the machine has its own harddisk and does not need internet to record. Amcrest

America's chip land has another potential shortage: Electronics engineers

vincent himpe

Re: Not enough EE’s to expand onshore chip design, Why?

recently ? you must not have used FPGA then. Terasic had FPGA development kits for 50$ , in 2001. that's 21 years ago....

They have kits today with huge FPGAs for 100$. that is still cheaper than a computer.

vincent himpe

without that 8048 you wouldn't be able to type anything on that keyboard of yours.

the original ibm pc had one in the keyboard and on on the motherboard (8042, same core). the 8042 also controlled A20

its derivate, the 8051, still counts as the most produced core in the world.

so don't diss the 8048.

Near-undetectable malware linked to Russia's Cozy Bear

vincent himpe

Re: About The Email Store-And-Forward Process....

email should be text only..

We need a universal dataformat that is non-executable . Allow only letters, number and punctuation. Subset of ASCII. ASCII is 8 bit , by suppressing more than half of it you cannot emulate opcodes even if you were able to break the system and manage to convert the data to executable.

The receiving routines would have a bitmask: anything not in the allowable set is simply removed from the input stream before it goes to the applications.

Then bolt an HTML or XML like structure on top of that to do formatting. Everything in plaintext.

Executable files can only be transmitted using a dedicated service (similar to an app store) and installed by an installer program.

Operating system is not able to accept any executable code unless it comes through that channel. That way you can plaster the users screen with as many warnings as needed to get it into their thick heads that they are going to install executable code.

Open source body quits GitHub, urges you to do the same

vincent himpe

Re: What they do

That's essentially what a plumber does. You scored a free toilet, and want it installed in your home ,built by someone else. So the plumber comes and does that for a fee. if the toilet develops a problem the same plumber will come and fix it , for a fee. Why ? because you can't deal with your own sh..

Arrogant, subtle, entitled: 'Toxic' open source GitHub discussions examined

vincent himpe


vi vs emacs

kde vs gnome

suse vs debian vs ubuntu vs whatever

command line vs gui

mac vs pc

The endless debates go on and on and on. It's like saying no to Ms Doyle offering you a cup of tea. At one point you just go: "feck off cup "!

NASA tricks Artemis launch computer by masking data showing a leak

vincent himpe

It's leaking hydrogen...

keep filling it !

vincent himpe

It's leaking hydrogen !

keep filling !

Russia mulls making software piracy legal and patent licensing compulsory

vincent himpe

of course they will offer payment...

but since the other party can't accept it ... winner winner.

Astra fails, sends NASA's Tropics weather satellites back to Earth

vincent himpe

Re: "Space is hard."

ask the whale .. or the petunia

Meteoroid hits main mirror on James Webb Space Telescope

vincent himpe

universe to webb telescope :you wan tot study me ? i throw dust in your face !

US Copyright Office sued for denying AI model authorship of digital image

vincent himpe

"human being". so a monkey or an elephant (they make paintings) cannot own a copyright... They cannot be considered author nor owner so those paintings are basically fair game.

I'm going back to the planet i came from and i'm taking all my idea's with me...

New York to get first right-to-repair law for electronics

vincent himpe

no sppliances ? -fail-

so if my refrigerator, dishwasher, garage door opener or tv breaks i'm SOL.... even my blender. bye bye margaritas ...

luckily i still have my soldering iron.

The next time your program is 'not responding,' (do not) try these steps

vincent himpe

Re: systemd

In soviet linux you are the computer and you emulate the system in your mind. The cat ate the last mouse and the monitor only shows empty wodka bottles.

vincent himpe

Re: @FirstTangoInParis

real programmers go straight from pencil written opcodes to mask rom. and it works right first time. if it doesn't : it was spec'd wrong

vincent himpe

which distro ? which UI ? vi or emacs ? systemd or not ? what color scheme ? what package manager ?

once you answer all of that then find out the application you need doesn't exist on linux....

Linux Lite 6.0: It's quite pretty, but 'lite' it is not

vincent himpe

how many more package managers do we need ?

Why can't we have a simple setup file like on windows or mac ? Applications should be distributed with everything they need and not have to pull in a metric crapload of other stuff. they should also install in their own container and not throw their stuff everywhere or modify the system.

To run x you need to first install y, z, q , p , r (but only 2.9 unless your kernel is 3.21.4.q.left and the wind comes from the east on a tuesday , but not in april or if the year is divisible by 5 , unless your neighbor just made a fresh cup of tea.. then it is ok to click cancel to proceed -facepalm-


There are so many flavors out there. this only runs on that, this thing only uses that package manager ... it's infuriating. Self deploying is what we need. without dependencies or prerequisites. the install package contains everything.

California Right-to-Repair bill quietly killed in committee

vincent himpe

they did it wrong

They should have mentioned guns. Right to repair guns (and other stuff) . It would have passed in the blink of an eye

Sick of Windows but can't afford a Mac? Consult our cynic's guide to desktop Linux

vincent himpe

I like option 0

1) Avoid all the niche efforts.

2) Firstly, they're small.

3) Not many people use them

4) You'll have difficulty finding people to ask for help

5) third-party hardware and software probably won't work out of the box

6) and if you ask the vendor for help

7) game or a graphics card or a printer

8) Stick to the mainstream."

Windows and MacOS it is then.

1) not niche

2) not small (trillion dollar companies)

3) many people use it

4) easy to find someone who knows

5) third party hard and software do work out of the box.

6) There is an actual vendor as opposed to pet projects made in somebodies spare time

7) ooh . que the binary blob crusaders.

8) windows and MacOS it is then.

Then gain, already knew that. Linux on the desktop . Lol.

Foxconn factory fiasco could leave Wisconsinites on the hook for $300m

vincent himpe

what's the function of that giant metal ball ? burning money ?

DuckDuckGo tries to explain why its browsers won't block some Microsoft web trackers

vincent himpe

we don't track*

use us, everyone else is evil

*except where contractually obligated.

The sad state of Linux desktop diversity: 21 environments, just 2 designs

vincent himpe

braille packages doesn't do any good unless you have a braille interface so they can "read" by touch.

With the current cpu horsepower i'd expect that speech to text, and text to speech would be way more advanced by now.

vincent himpe

doesn;t have to be alexa. speech to text. dictate the letter.

vincent himpe

blind people don't even need monitors , why do they need a full blown graphical user interface ? think about it !

This is like making shoes with an attached staircase bolted on top of a car ... so you drive upstairs

Isn't that the real problem ? Should we maybe rethink how to build a user interface for disabled people ?

Alexa is far more useful for blind people (as a user interface) you can talk to it and it responds. no keyboard, mouse, monitor needed.

vincent himpe

Re: Such a chatastrophy

all this can easily be solved by living next to a river or creek. just make sure you are upstream from the neighbours.