* Posts by Jim Whitaker

30 posts • joined 19 Jun 2013

Someone made an AI that predicted gender from email addresses, usernames. It went about as well as expected

Jim Whitaker


Remember, on the Internet no on can tell you're a dog.

There's no accounting for TITSUP*: Beancounters bemoan Sage cloudy sync software outage

Jim Whitaker


I have never understood why firms would put their core functions at risk by moving them online. Two extra points of failure (at least). Two organisations (at least) who are concerned with their profit/survival, not yours.

Someone got so fed up with GE fridge DRM – yes, fridge DRM – they made a whole website on how to bypass it

Jim Whitaker


Right to repair? - I'd establish a duty for devices to be easily repairable. For example, replacing the battery in my mobile phone should require no tools (other than an "ordinary" screwdriver perhaps). No need for prising, heating to melt glue or "proprietary" restrictions, e.g. trademarked connectors.

Better late than never... Google Chrome to kill off 'tiny' number of mobile web ads that gobble battery, CPU power

Jim Whitaker

That's not the real point.

I block ads to the maximum extent possible because I hate ads. The background waste of resource - shrug.

We beg, implore and beseech thee. Stop reusing the same damn password everywhere

Jim Whitaker

Re: In other news....

Once had access to a HUGE (for those days) IBM mainframe in a university. Got bored with changing a password every 30 days but it had a really nice macro language which made changing the password ten times back in a ring a matter of routine.

Sweet TCAS! We can make airliners go up-diddly-up whenever we want, say infosec researchers

Jim Whitaker

Interesting. I am told that more accidents are caused by pilots than by equipment failure. Could Chesley Sullenberger have been replaced by AI? If you are the sort of person who believes that a vehicle could safely navigate on our roads without a driver, then I guess that you would say Yes, the Hudson River is an easy choice. Another viewpoint is that the airliner of the future will have a pilot and a dog in the cockpit. The pilot to make a couple of announcements to the self-loading cargo and the dog to bite the pilot if they touch any of the controls.

French pensioner ejected from fighter jet after accidentally grabbing bang seat* handle

Jim Whitaker

Re: Aerotime Hub

I did not notice any? (That would be because I have ad blocking, tracer hiding, pop-up killing extensions loaded.) Killing these things is really satisfying except that you have to turn them off to appreciate them. Odd that.

Jim Whitaker

Canopy removal

There are plenty of aircraft ejection systems where the seat is intended to break the canopy and some where it is the fall-back option if canopy ejection or canopy fragmentation (by small explosive charges in those wavy lines you see) fail. For a blurry bureaucratic report see https://www.cia.gov/library/readingroom/docs/CIA-RDP75B00285R000400170001-9.pdf. Or the Martin-Baker website.

Boeing 787s must be turned off and on every 51 days to prevent 'misleading data' being shown to pilots

Jim Whitaker

Date check

Own up, who else checked the date of this piece?

Scottish biz raided, fined £500k for making 193 million automated calls

Jim Whitaker


I'll bet the company is dissolved before the ink is dry on any appeal.

Incidentally has anyone else wondered why two of the people associated with the company as directors are Stephen Foot and Stephen Alexander Foot, both with the same birth month?

Windows 7: Still looking after business (except when it isn't)

Jim Whitaker

Supermarket also

Recently using a self-serve till in Sainsburys and about a dozen items in - blue screen - Options to reboot in safe mode and, since I had no keyboard to fiddle with, a reboot in normal mode. Windows 7 EPOS splash screen displayed. Cashier said that it would take seven minutes to reboot so use another till!

Wave goodbye: DigitalOcean decimates workforce as co-founder reveals lack of profitability, leadership turmoil

Jim Whitaker

Well done

Tip of the hat to the author (or the sub-head writer?) for using decimate correctly.

Blackout Bug: Boeing 737 cockpit screens go blank if pilots land on specific runways

Jim Whitaker

Black Box analysis

"International custom is for the manufacturer to analyse these boxes;" I don't think so. The analysis is by international agreement the responsibility of the aviation investigation authorities in the country of the incident (different rules if outside a country - https://www.emsa.europa.eu/retro/Docs/marine_casualties/annex_13.pdf. (Ignore the marine in the link, it is aviation)). Black box analysis, particularly in technically difficult cases, is most highly developed in a few countries and those countries are often invited to assist the responsible state. The assistance of manufacturers (or anybody else) may be sought but that is at the discretion of the responsible country.

Careful now, UK court ruling says email signature blocks can sign binding contracts

Jim Whitaker

Proper statute law required?

I'm sure I recall many years ago a court decision that an "automatically added "signature" did not have the effect of a signature" but if the originator typed their name as a signature with or without any automatic addition, then that was binding.

Has that changed or was it from a court which did not generate a binding precedent in this case?

EU court rules Right To Be Forgotten doesn't apply outside member states

Jim Whitaker


Reaches for VPN.

Queen Elizabeth has a soggy bottom: No, the £3.1bn aircraft carrier, what the hell did you think we meant?

Jim Whitaker

Re: Daily Mail

The Daily Mail problem is easily solved. Don't read it. Simples.

We're not throttling you, says Vodafone, claiming slow vid streaming is down to the 'cards'

Jim Whitaker


Interesting. My ISP has just recently stopped selling new connections using Vodafone supplied links and is in the process of migrating existing service users (like me) to another provider. I don't expect much improvement since the copper to my house is too long but good to see Uno taking action.

Wow, fancy that. Web ad giant Google to block ad-blockers in Chrome. For safety, apparently

Jim Whitaker


The only possible and consistent definition of "Progress" is that it is what happens as time increases. (I forget whose novel I remember that from, but consider yourself acknowledged.)

A few reasons why cops haven't immediately shot down London Gatwick airport drone menace

Jim Whitaker

Re: Ahhhh shoot!

Nonsense. Falling bullets dangerous or fatal. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Celebratory_gunfire

For fax sake: NHS to be banned from buying archaic copy-flingers

Jim Whitaker

Re: Recent Experience....

Spot on. Where there are problems with comms to some other partner organisations, get a grip and solve them.

Jim Whitaker

Data breaches

I had a job in the NHS as Interim Governance Manager. I was surprised at the ubiquitous fax machines. I then became aware of the number of serious data breaches which they were implicated in.

Send full details of child injuries following abuse? OK course, I will fax them now to the flower shop round the corner. No wait, I will send them to the solicitors for the other party.

Yes as a GP surgery I'm happy for dozens of sheets of health information to be spewed out over the floor overnight for the local cleaning firm to tidy up before surgery staff arrive.

And those flimsy sheets coming out of the fax by the window - well we recovered most of them from the car park.

I'm not saying that autocomplete does not cause issues with email but the ability to install controls is so much better with email.

MyHealth Record privacy legislation published

Jim Whitaker

Who needs a Government?

Be like the Belgians or the Northern Irish. Just do without.

I predict a riot: Amazon UK chief foresees 'civil unrest' for no-deal Brexit

Jim Whitaker

Good thing his business is better than his judgement

Stupid boy. ;-)

You wanna be an alpha... tester of The Register's redesign? Step this way

Jim Whitaker

Too many images on the home page just for the sake of pretty. One per page should be the max unless actually relevant (not just pretty) to the subject.

What's in a name? For Cambridge Analytica, about a quid apparently

Jim Whitaker

Data Controller

The position is explained well here:


Yes, Emergency Service Network will be late and cost more - UK perm sec

Jim Whitaker


Well that's a surprise - not.

hiQ prevails / LinkedIn must allow scraping / Of your page info

Jim Whitaker

It's public

Which bit of "public" do people have trouble understanding?

Facebook fans fuel faggots firestorm

Jim Whitaker

OED definition

The OED does recognise the meat product; see item 5 at http://www.oed.com/viewdictionaryentry/Entry/67623 .

Google Glassholes to be BANNED from UK roads

Jim Whitaker

OK Axe so how many deaths are you willing to risk in support of your argument?

Nuke plants to rely on PDP-11 code UNTIL 2050!

Jim Whitaker
Thumb Up

"Legacy software" = "Stuff that works".


Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2020