* Posts by Chris Evans

618 publicly visible posts • joined 27 Jun 2008


EU wants to make undersea internet cables more resilient

Chris Evans

Re: Good intentions, but ...

Yes after reading "At a top level, the recommendations identify actions EU member states should take, also including any necessary improvements to the security of seabed cables" I wondered what the recommendations were but don't see anything mentioned and struggle to think of any realistic physical protection that can be done. Maybe they are keeping that secret but I doubt it. Disaster planning and redundancy are I think the only options.

When red flags are just office decoration: Edinburgh Uni's Oracle IT disaster

Chris Evans

Will any heads roll?

I doubt it. Taking responsibility for anything negative in most organisations, rarely seems to happen these days.

Techie climbed a mountain only be told not to touch the kit on top

Chris Evans

Power cycling is a bit like fuses

There are two camps: Power Cycling fixes everything AND Power Cycling is a waste of time you have to find out why it crashed.

with fuses it is:

Replacing a blown fuse will fix it AND you have to find out why the fuse went, dismissing a faulty fuse as the cause.

My philosophy is for none critical equipment: the first time it is necessary to power cycle / replace fuse make a note. If it happens again investigate.

ICANN proposes creating .INTERNAL domain to do the same job as 192.168.x.x

Chris Evans


Can anyone explain what the costs are being referred to here are: "But as ICANN's proposal for the idea noted: "Operators who choose to use private namespaces of the kind proposed in this document should understand the potential for that decision to have corresponding costs, and that those costs might well be avoided by choosing instead to use a sub-domain of their own publicly registered domain name."

Crippled Peregrine lunar lander set for fiery return to Earth in matter of days

Chris Evans

Cislunar space

Not heard of 'Cislunar space' before. Apparently it is the region outside of Earth that includes lunar orbit, the Moon's orbital space around Earth and the Lagrange points.

The word cis-lunar comes from Latin and means "on this side of the Moon" or "not beyond the Moon"

Missing tomatoes ketchup with ISS crew after almost a year lost in space

Chris Evans

The missing poo?

They look brown to me, maybe they are the missing poo.

"ASTRONAUT Tim Peake was warned about a poo on the loose in the zero-gravity International Space Station.

He was part of a crew ordered to “keep an eye out” for the missing floater."


Ofcom proposes ban on UK telcos making 'inflation-linked' price hikes mid-contract

Chris Evans

Re: Ofcom...

But where does the 100GB of data come from? You get it from the Teleco and you use some of it yourself. It could have been better worded though.

Chris Evans

Re: Hey, there's an idea...

"At the moment it's only telco contracts doing that - it's banned for every other consumer market."

I don't think it is banned, though my only other regular contract I have is Energy and that is currently highly regulated. A friend has a flat rent contract of Inflation + 3%. I can't think of any other common long term consumer agreements.

Whilst Ofcom may not be able ban quantified in contract rises, the government could!

Chris Evans

Re: Hey, there's an idea...

For my small business (Not registered for VAT) Brexit has put up my buying prices from the EU by 20%

Digital memories are disappearing and not even AI or Google can help

Chris Evans

Where's that tab?

"All of those tabs are important. I just can't really remember what's open anywhere any more – only that it's open. Somewhere."

For me I know the tab I'm looking for, is open in Firefox on my laptop but even when I remember part of the URL or title, Firefox's 'search tabs' frequently doesn't find it. I really should report it as a bug.

NASA engineers got their parachute wires crossed for OSIRIS-REx mission

Chris Evans

Start at 0 or 1?

Does numbering starting from 0 or 1 in a particular system?

This I suspect is most frequent single cause of wiring errors as well just a few in programming!

Fortunately on most occasions systems with this error will fail on even limited testing and hopefully without a cloud of smoke.

HP exec says quiet part out loud when it comes to locking in print customers

Chris Evans

Not just you. I was just about to say the same. I wonder if they meant 'double digit' percentage increase in the number of subscribers. Though I don't think 10%+ particularly notable.

Brit borough council apologizes for telling website users to disable HTTPS

Chris Evans
Thumb Up

At least they didn't "apologize for ANY inconvenience"

"We apologize for the obvious inconvenience "

gets a thumbs up from me.

Robocar tech biz sues Nvidia, claims stolen code shared in Teams meeting blunder

Chris Evans

Re: One slide to rule them all

I suspect no code itself was on screen but a filer view showing "the file path on his screen still read 'ValeoDocs." with recognisable source code file names.

Scientists use Raspberry Pi tech to protect NASA telescope data

Chris Evans

5TB of solid-state storage

"Raspberry Pi 3B and 5TB of solid-state storage..... simply copying data to an SD card"

Photo's at:https://www.space.com/superbit-balloon-telescope-dark-matter-data-salvaged

show a 1TB microSD card and 2 USB pens!

Sorry Pat, but it's looking like Arm PCs are inevitable

Chris Evans

It's taken a long long time.

It's taken a long long time and there is still a way to go. I remember in 1987 when the ARM2 based Acorn Archimedes was supposed to be going to take over the desktop world!

It is 20 years since the last commercial flight of Concorde

Chris Evans

Goosebumps! The only aircraft that looks like it should fly!

Reading the comments has given me Goosebumps and brought a tear to my eye. I fondly remember going to Heathrow with a friend who helped design Concorde on 24th October 2003 to watch the three Concordes land.

A few years before that I was in the grounds of Windsor Castle when it flew over, after looking at it I happened to look down and noticed that everyone in the grounds had stopped walking to look up at it.

I've always thought it is the only aircraft that looks like it should fly! I regret not flying in it.

Royal College considers no confidence move after Excel recruitment debacle

Chris Evans

Blind acceptance! The computer says no!

Surely whoever read the results should have questioned what seems a pretty obvious error. I suspect they would have reported the results to others who should also have asked for them to be investigated.

Down and out: Barclays Bank takes unplanned digital detox, customers not invited

Chris Evans

"If it's not addressed to you, you're not supposed to open it, either."

It's normally illegal but I think suspecting fraud would be classed as 'reasonable excuse'. Having said that companies and the police don't make it easy to report this sort of thing or seem to take it serious.

The Act reads: "A person commits an offence if, intending to act to a person's detriment and without reasonable excuse, he opens a postal packet which he knows or reasonably suspects has been incorrectly delivered to him."

TaxWatch finds astute scheme minimizes Big Tech's UK tax bill by over $2B

Chris Evans

Amazon misleading!

"Amazon ranks in the top 15 largest UK taxpayers for taxes borne and collected" I deduce this is referring to their collecting VAT on their sales and on all the thousands of sellers selling on Amazon. I call that extremely misleading. I do wonder why anyone buys from Amazon, I don't have to try hard to find what I want cheaper than on Amazon.

Chap blew up critical equipment on his first day – but it wasn't his volt

Chris Evans

£1000 power cable error

A similar (Manufacturers) error (Mains colour coded cable used for a DC cable) cost me about £500 about 40 years ago. I ran an Acorn dealership and a customer brought us a BBC Micro for repair. The reported fault was a few dodgy keys on the keyboard. (The key switches are individually soldered in). My engineer though reported the computer as dead along with the Torch Z80 coprocessor that was inside. Investigations showed every chip we tested was dead. The customer was adamant that it was all working fine when he gave it to wife to drop into us and we must have blown it up. We replaced the motherboard & Z80 card (Nearly £1000 worth) and the customer reluctantly paid half the cost. About a month later his wife came popped in for a printer ribbon and told us the full story. On her way to bring us the computer she'd popped into a friends who's husband offered to fix the computer, he spotted that the power input lead was non standard so fitted a UK mains plug and tried the computer which showed no signs of life. Hence it was brought into us. The non standard power plug was part of a Torch Z80 co-processor & floppy drive disc pack. The PSU Acorn fitted to very early BBCs was linear and didn't output enough to support the Z80 Co-Pro so Torch supplied a PSU in their disk pack which had a three pin DC output. The DC plug looked like a three pin miniature round pin UK mains plug! It supplied the +5V and -5V that the BBCs motherboard used, that was bad enough but Torch used mains colour coded cable! Thus 240V AC was applied to the BBCs 5V rail!

The friends husband was partially to blame but I think Torch's choice of mains cable for a DC lead was the main culprit. The wife did say her husband hadn't spoken to her for several days after she mentioned about the friends husbands repair attempt. I should then have gone back and asked for full payment but I chickened out, we had after all supplied the Torch Z80 upgrade.

Unfortunately there are still no standards for DC cables. DC 2.1 & 2.5mm connectors are common but they are used for many voltages! Multiple voltage DC plugs are very rarely the same, even sometimes from the same manufacturer. Later USB C specs allow for a single voltage up to 48V but that requires intelligent devices to negotiate it, so only a solution for currently a very small proportion of devices.

Freecycle gives users the gift of a security breach notice

Chris Evans

Re: Gave up on all of them

I've used freecycle quite a few times, both giving away and receiving. There can be a few niggles but nothing to worry about.

Free Wednesday gift for you lucky lot: Extra mouse button!

Chris Evans

contacting karlkarl / can you private message someone on theregister?

Can you private message someone on theregister?

I'd like to contact karlkarl re his big box of mice

I know the sites Ts&Cs say no "solicitations of business" but hope posting that I'd be interested in buying from karlkarl is o.k.

I'm also not sure if I'm allowed to post my email address in a comment, I'm not worried about generating spam as my address is out there in many places and fortunately doesn't get too much spam.

Depending on replies I'll probably post my email address here slightly obfuscated.

California man's business is frustrating telemarketing scammers with chatbots

Chris Evans

When I give up stringing them along...

I suggest politely why don't they get a job that their parents and children can be proud of them doing rather than trying to steal from people, they'd also probably sleep better at night.

Ford in reverse gear over AM radio removal after Congress threatens action

Chris Evans

'Good catch. I notice that several posters here had followed the lead from the article and thought that AM meant Amplitude Modulated, rather than "AM broadcast license".'

I don't understand what that means and googling hasn't helped. Please elucidate.

Intel mulls cutting ties to 16 and 32-bit support

Chris Evans

ARM Comparison?

I'd be interested to known what similar changes ARM have done or proposed to their architecture.

Apple gives up legal war on iPhone CPU wizard who co-founded Nuvia

Chris Evans

History repeats its self

I recently read


the parallels are uncanny!

Motorola had the expensive (and complex for its time) 6800 the designers wanted to design a simpler CPU but management said no, so they left and designed the 6502. Acorns knowledge of the 6502 in the BBC Micro was key to their designing of the ARM CPU.

Here's how the data we feed AI determines the results

Chris Evans

Great article

Very informative and well explained.

I recall someone writing that despite the internet often giving wrong information the truth will eventually come to the fore. These LLM will I fear significantly increase the dissemination of wrong information and I have no idea how realistically it can be stopped.

On a related topic there was a Radio4 report this week about the fake Hitler diaries going on public view. An expert told the reporter there was no chance a far right group could use the diaries to aid their cause as they were so obviously wrong! Given the last few years with Covid deniers and 'Trump won the election' he is so wrong.

The Stonehenge of PC design, Xerox Alto, appeared 50 years ago this month

Chris Evans

Three mouse buttons!

I see the mouse had three mouse buttons! I wonder how they were designated?

RISC OS it is SMA (Select, Menu & Adjust)

Windows (Select, program-specific feature, display a shortcut menu or other program-specific feature.)

I don't know how other OS's designate them.

Techie fired for inventing an acronym – and accidentally applying it to the boss

Chris Evans

Not an anacronym, so no explanation needed!

HAL didn't need to say it was an acronym just a random person's name. People like to have someone to blame. The name clash would have annoyed the real Sue but not as much as explaining the acronym.

LockBit's Royal Mail ransom deadline flies by. No data released

Chris Evans

Piss up in a brewery...

Over a month later and they are still in disarray. If they had to wipe every hard disc and reinstall everything: OS, programs and datafiles surely it should not take this long!

My local Post Office says by the end of the month they will be able to process parcels BUT they will have to enter everything that is on the CN22 customs form at the till for each parcel.

They have also made a pigs ear out communicating the situation, with the Royal Mail & Post Office websites not saying the same, counter staff saying something else and an email from their customer service department with yet another version of what can be sent.

They still don't say if they have processed all the parcels that were sent before they stopped accepting them. Also they don't say if stamped Large Letters/small parcels with CN22's can be sent or not. I presume not, but the poor communication seams to be par for the course. With the news of the situation on the Post Office website lagging behind Royal Mail's by several days I guess the update from RM to PO was posted 2nd class!

Scammers steal $4 million in crypto during face-to-face meeting

Chris Evans

Nor me. But..

I don't know if his business is a good long term investment prospect but I applaud his openness. It doesn't sound like he did anything risky so I wouldn't hold that against him if I was considering investing.

Sysadmin infected bank with 'alien virus' that sucked CPUs dry

Chris Evans

Re: sitting idle means they are using less power

Yes heat the person not the room is by far the most efficient. The problem is my fingers get cold easily, fingerless gloves help a bit.

An IT emergency during a festive visit to the in-laws? So sorry, everyone, I need to step out for a while

Chris Evans

Missing information?

I may have got a hold of the wrong end of the stick, it reads like the data was totally lost but what about the data on the server itself was it also lost? (Hence them trying the tape backups). Trying to recover the data on the server itself might have been possible!

LastPass admits attackers have a copy of customers’ password vaults

Chris Evans

A unique memorable password?

I keep meaning to investigate password lockers, this news doesn't fill me with confidence. I currently use a system that means I have unique passwords for all sites and I can remember them.


Where the @ is the third letter of the website domain and # is the first letter

The words and actual number are ones I've memorised.

So a unique password for every website that can easily be remembered. The system I actually use has some of elements of the above and more.

If a human was trying to crack it they probably could, especially if they had my password for two websites

Square Kilometre Array Observatory construction commences

Chris Evans

Re: I wonder how they are getting the data off site?

I did wonder at fibre but being so remote it looks like they'd have to lay 100+ Milometers of fibre!

Chris Evans

I wonder how they are getting the data off site?

I couldn't see anything on the links you gave.

There is going to be an awful lot of data to shift. Given the sites remoteness a satellite link would often be used but wouldn't that interfere with what they are trying to record?

Thinking about it nearly all the data will be going off site so that would help.

Tech contractor who uses an umbrella company? UK tax is coming after them

Chris Evans

VAT turnover threshold £85,000 p.a.


Looking for a holiday DIY project? Build your own pen-plotter, for under $15

Chris Evans

Reminds me of the Penman Plotter

We used to sell the Penman Plotter (It was designed and made in Worthing by part of Eurotherm where our shop was)

It was aTurtle Plotter relying on dead reckoning so any wheel slip ruined a plot, the one advantage was as it it had quite a long tether so could do quite large plots.


OpenPrinting keeps old printers working – even on Windows

Chris Evans

For the ignorant like me: WSL = Windows Subsystem for Linux


China's first domestic single-aisle jet, the C919, scores 300 orders

Chris Evans

How big a backlog of 737's & A320's in time is?

The question that immediately popped into my head was how long in time is the backlog of "4,277 Boeing 737s. Airbus' combined A220 and A320 backlog was reported at 6,772"

Boeing production rate is put at 31 a month so at that rate over 11 years!

Airbus production rate as far as I can make out about 85 a month combined for A220 and A320 so nearly 7 years!

USB-C iPhone, anyone? EU finalizes charging standard rule

Chris Evans

Limited period?

If they made it mandatory for a limited period then at the end of the period anything new would mostly[1] have to have significant enough advantages to be acceptable in the market place.

[1] Unfortunately Apple doesn't follow the normal rules and would do its own thing.

Woman forced to sell 4-bed house after crypto exchange wrongly refunded $7.2m

Chris Evans

Re: an account number was accidentally entered into the payment amount field

Not all banks. Barclays insist on £1.00 minimum or certainly did last time I tried.

Modeling software spins up plans for floating wind turbines

Chris Evans

Re: Rickover rolling over.

"....someone ran both Marmite and Vegemite samples. Unfortunately, I can't find the results online at the moment ... but I know they are out there."

Googles first hit for "Marmite and Vegemite spectrometer" might be what you came across!

Rocket Lab CEO reflects on company's humble beginnings as a drainpipe

Chris Evans

Re: 110%

Thanks for explaining that. I'm so used to being annoyed by people in sport asking for 110% effort I hadn't realised the subtilty of exceeding design output.

Chris Evans


I was very impressed with what he was saying until he said "the engines were at 110 per cent the whole time" hyperbole is not something you want to hear from a rocket scientist, so downgraded to 'impressed'.

We were promised integrated packages. Instead we got disintegrated apps

Chris Evans

Cloud access?

Don't many (most?) of these apps rely on Cloud access?

Alistair can add that to his list, it certainly could add a significant amount of extra time.

GitLab versus The Zombie Repos: An old plot needs a new twist

Chris Evans

I don't understand the suggestion...

"What if the free tier was contingent on offering 10GB of your local storage to the community, with the resultant aggregated free tier storage managed by GitLab as the hosting system" I don't follow!

GitLab plans to delete dormant projects in free accounts

Chris Evans

Re: Author not around to do changes!

There must be many people who use software from gitlab etc. who aren't programmers, just users, who wouldn't know what to download, how to do it or what to do with it if they did download it.