* Posts by JoePritchard

14 publicly visible posts • joined 24 Jun 2008

Judge backs Halifax in Chip and PIN clone case


I agree with m'Lud...for once!

Looking at the judgement, I think the judge was right.

Whilst I think there are possible issues around C&P, they're not being shown up in this case.

Facebook vote a 'massive con trick' says privacy advocate


Fuss about nothing...

If you don't like the T&Cs of a service you use, quit using it.

There, end of problem.

I'm actually more concerned about my Government wanting to snoop on everything in my online life, but until the next election I'm stuck with the bastards.

IBM cuts internet comp for work-at-homers


I assume that IBMErs only use the connection for IBM business?

If not, just get over it.

IBM have provided this perk for nigh on a decade, and as no one forces you to work from home (don't forget many people are nor allowed this option, even now) I'm surprised that they have done so.

After all, they do provide ofices form which business can be conducted at the company's expense...

If you use the Internet connection or anything else than wrk then IBM have been effectively paying for private use - perhaps that portion of the bill should be regarded as taxable?

I'm a contractor; there are many times when I could work from home but the copany prefers me in the office. When I do work from home then unless I've had to get something in specially for that job, I won't even consider claiming or it.

Stallman warns open-sourcers on Javascript-browser trap


Oh please, Mr Stallman...go away!

I've had 'issues' with Richard Stallman for years. Whilst it's arguable that he has had a big (not necessarily good) influence on software development, it's worth remembering that he started out in the highly protected (and protective) environment of the MIT AI labs, where he apparently thought it jolly to change people's passwords to a blank one, and other japes against 'unfree' behaviours.

The fact that the funding for his playground came from the US Government at a time when they were supporting 'freedom' in such places as Chile and Viet Nam seems to have passed this particular ivory tower dweller by....

I find him pompous, pretentious and reactionary - an ideologoue of the worst sort. In order to get things done we sometimes have to be pragmatic - Open Source as it is today comes more from a pragmatic approach to getting the job done than it does from the truth as written by Stallman.

eBay: don't come on our US site without protection


Springtime, for ebay, and Donahoe...

Autumn, for Google and Amazon... :-)

In my minds-eye I have an all singing, all dancing, story of ebay extravaganza a la 'The producers's 'Springtime for Hitler'.

Only without the laughs. These guys are seriously out to get every last penny from their public or die trying, and for the first time I have to question whether ebay will actually survive the next few years.

Freelancers might be taxed as employees after High Court ruling


Have I missed something here?

To be honest, this seems like yet another skirmish in the IR35 war. I don't see anything in this case that contractors haven't been warned about for the last several years.

3 years for one client, in a role that sounds like it was heavily directed by the client in terms of how the work was done, when, where and by whom. I have to say I'd be wary of trying to get that contract in my books as being outside IR35....

But it's a heck of a whack to be delivered in terms of a tax bill.

Academic wants to 'free up' English spelling


For 'free up' read 'dumb down'...

This country is becoming a laughing stock in the world.

I assume that this is another ploy to make our ill-educated young people more suited to become Sector 7g Drones. Just give 'em enough education to perform.

I for one will welcome our better educated overlords...wherever they come from.

Mine's the coat with the King James Bible in one pocket and the works of Shakespeare in the other.

Trashman arrested for YouTube threats

Black Helicopters

About time....

It really is about time the legal authorities took threats made to groups and individuals over the Internet more seriously - especially in the UK.

It's assault, harassment, abuse - the sooner some of these anonymous gutless wonders get a copper knocking at their door and making them wet their pants, the better...

A black helicopter, because they should be good for this sort of thing.

Barclays and HBOS slash contractor rates


A contract...is a contract...is a contract...or is it?

I've been a contractor / freelance for about 23 years now, and to be honest if my rate was to be cut half way through the contract I'd be leaving as soon as was practicable - I'd do the same if I was a permie and was given a pay cut, after all.

I have eminently sellable skills (so I'm told), good interpersonal skills (again according to the people who I've worked with) and know my stuff; so why should I continue to work for a company who no longer value me?

I've worked on numerous occasions for HBOS and found them to be good employers from a contract point of view; their rates were high, actually - definitely when I was last there (4 years ago) they were paying me a good 10 to 15% above market.

I too have found technically poor people in both permanent employment and contract work; I'm far from perfect myself, but as we are frequently told by banks when discussing overdrafts and bank charges...a contract is a contract. :-)

Ex-Googlers reinvent web search


A Google alternative would be nice...but this AIN'T it!!


I aso went and took a look after reading about the site on the BBC, and the first thing that I experienced was a UI that was VERY reluctant to forget my previous search and let me search for soemthing new...

OK...so once around that, the results were awful. Significantly fewer than Google in every search I tried and results that, to be generous, lacked relevance. Or were of a relevance that only the eye of faith could see...

I noticed on the BBC Blog that comments were made suggesting this was targetting academic searches only, but even there I was seriously disappointed.

If this is a production grade site, Google can rest easy.

If this is a pre-production site undergoing Beta Testing, then there's a truckload of work to do.

Mine's the coat with the print out of DMOZ in the pocket...

Criminal record checks could hit over 14 million people

Black Helicopters

Joined up thinking?

I volunteer with a couple of organisations and our response to this will be easy.

We don't accept any volunteers under 18 years old. There. I assume that youth groups, etc. will start having a bleed out of volunteers, so any efforts by HMG to reach youth gangs and other disaffected young people through such groups will fail miserably.

I run a web site or two - same there. Won't accept users under 18 - not sure how to prove their age but I'll have to investigate methods of doing so.

Nice one, HMG - go and disaffect a few more young people whilst you're at it....

I have no problems with a CRB check as appropriate, but why am I getting the queasy feeling that this is yet another attempt by HMG to grab another tranche of people in their 'trawl for data for a basis for ID cards' operation?

I'd like to see the opposition parties state unequivocally that they would dismantle this legislation - and similar knee-jerk legislation inflicted on us by New labour - as early as possible in a new parliament.

Other governments who've sown this sort of distrust in communities were the Nazis, the Stalinists, Mao's China and the Khmer Rouge. Good company you kepe these days, Gordon.

The Black Helicopters are on the wing...

New York pressures more ISPs into child pornography crackdown


@Alan Donaly

The funny thing is I don't see any Corporates putting child pornography up there, do you?

This abuse of the net is being done by abusers who've exploited the anonymity inherent in USENET to their own evil ends.

I don't use USENET anymore but feel that it should be protected. The problem is that over the years anyone attempting to curtail content - however obnoxious - in this corner of the Internet has tended to be shot down in flames. Remember all the nonsense years ago about whether or not to use Bots to clear up spam?

We do need to stop this crap - but quite how I have no idea. Curtialing access to the binary groups is overkill but at least it's an attempt. Most legitimate material on the binary groups is probably more easily distributed via web sites, FTP or even email these days. And illegitimate material...well...

Cokeheads slip AI onto Yahoo! front page

Paris Hilton

AI my arse

Gotta agree with John McCarthy.

As well as dumbing down our expectations for the present, we've now started dumbing down our aspirations for the future.

Paris...because at this rate she'll be smarter than HAL and Skynet put together.

Ruby flaws send security researchers into shock


If this were ASP.NET.... ;-)

Yes, every language has errors in it that make it exploitable.

Here, the exploits can be carried out with crafted user input from applications developed with the language.

I've nothing against Ruby on Rails, but I'm sure that were this a similar issue with ASP.NET the pitchforks would already be being sharpened and the brands lit for an ol' style mob storming of the barricades.... :-)