* Posts by Jeff Green

48 posts • joined 27 Oct 2008

BOFH: Their bright orange plumage warns other species, 'Back off! I'm dangerous!'

Jeff Green

So now we know ...

the reason for Donald Trump's fake tan!

Pentagon in uproar: 'China's lasers' make US pilots shake in Djibouti

Jeff Green

Why are military aircraft suffering this? The number of available laser frequencies is small and goggles with narrow cut filters for all of them should not be too hard to arrange.

The human eye is a very small target and aircraft move fast, lasers cannot be held on such a target for very long.

Yes of course these things are very dangerous but in no way unopposable.

Days are numbered for the Czech Republic

Jeff Green

Re: CzechMate

Walking with a friend in Sarf Lunnun an American lady asked for directions to Fort Neef.

It was only when my very puzzled friend repeated the name in his distinctly Croydonian tones that I could point out that the address her brother-in-law had given her by phone was Thornton Heath ...

No, Microsoft: Your one-billion Windows 10 goal is just sad ... really sad

Jeff Green

If any normal user "wants" an operating system, that operating system is broken. An operating system shouldn't be a "product" as such. It is simply the way to get things done. Most people don't book a holiday on an Airbus 380, they book a Holiday in Thailand or Skegness with appropriate transport. Linux is a HUGE success because everyone uses it, many many times a day, and neither know nor care that they do.

When does anyone notice Windows? When it changes in a way that stops you working or it crashes or it costs you money.

Game of Moans: Sky coughs to BORKED set top box BALLS-UP

Jeff Green

Re: Which bit is broken?

It's always the other bit ...

Whoever you ask!

DAMN YOU! Microsoft blasts Google over zero-day blabgasm

Jeff Green

Sorry, but Microsoft were uttely wrong.

All those complaining that Google were sticking to an arbitrary deadline seem not to have noticed that so were Microsoft!

What is so special about a Tuesday?

If Microsoft had the fix for a security vulnerability and decided not to release it merely because they only release fixes on Tuesday they were 100% in the wrong. You have a fix you make it available, if you are meeting an old friend for a regular lunch every fourth Tuesday is fine.

If Microsoft had sent a mail saying "This problem is proving very tricky to fix and we estimate we are 7 days off a working solution please can you withhold" I would have some sympathy but "We have fixed it but our marketing department thinks it is better to do things on Tuesday so please don't release the info" is crass.

Microsoft are a huge company if they cannot fix a simple bug in their code in 3 months then they need to redeploy some of the thousands of people in other jobs into doing something useful.

Buggy? Angry? LET IT ALL OUT says Linus Torvalds

Jeff Green

Re: So he admits it

Errrrr, where to start ...

"He's unfit for the workplace"? Whose workplace, he's fit for his and that's all that matters.

Linux is ALREADY taken seriously, if you've used the internet today you've used more Linux than Windows, even if you are in a Microsoft house accessing Microsoft based sites that statement is probably true. Steve Ballmer was a total shit but M$ still made billions!

Who recompiles their own kernels? Only amateurs. Amateurs are people who do things for the love of them, professionals because they are paid to. I know who I want looking after my key systems! The Linux security professionals who push out the security fixes are both amateur and professional and normally get fixes out same day.

All the main linux distros these days have release cycles, for non-critical patches this is the way to do things, for critical patches the ONLY acceptable time-frame is ASAP. Waiting for the next 90 day release cycle while the bad guys empty your bank account may well be professional but it is also about as rankly stupid as it is possible to be!

systemd row ends with Debian getting forked

Jeff Green

Re: Init freedom

I would be mortified if anyone suggested 99.99% up time for my systems, that's 5 minutes downtime a year, if I wanted downtime I could run Windows. My linux webservers measure their uptime in years, they only get rebooted after a system is put in place to cover them. I do run (for my other employer) systems that are rebooted as a way to reread configurations, horrible but I do not have access to fix the coding, since they have to be rebooted and since they are required to never have more than 1 minute's gap in uptime we fixed the init to take well under 30 seconds.

I do not know if systemd is any good, but for my systems it is fixing a problem I haven't got and may well be introducing others that I do not want. All I ever wanted was an option to stick with a system that works, I never use Gnome so I don't care if that requires it, but then on most of my systems I don't use any sort of GUI so that's not surprising. On a unix box, any unix-like box, you only run what you need, forcing a larger system on a server is just plain bad.

That sub-$100 Android slab you got on Black Friday? RIDDLED with holes, say infosec bods

Jeff Green

In related news

It was revealed today that the Pope is Catholic and Bears shit in the woods. The problem isn't that the sellers of dirt cheap items cut corners, of course they do, that's the reason they are dirt cheap. The problem is when premium ones do the same!

Julian Assange discovers Google's given MONEY to EFF

Jeff Green

Re: Google isn't the problem, it's just a symptom

In what way would appointing a regulator be pushing back? Who would appoint him if not someone related to a government or three? That apart is the right to be forgotten really a good thing? I am prepared to bet that the Jimmy Savilles and Rolf Harrises of this world would think so.

Sometimes shining a light onto people's past is a great idea and sometimes it isn't. All we need os someone who knows which is which.

Jeff Green

Speaking as an individual, and one not funded by Google or anyone else apart from by working 40 hours a week ...

The European Court judgement was silly, very silly, but nothing like as bad as it was painted. It has the same background in silliness as many other rulings from courts all over the world, it attempts to impose local rules on non-local companies.

Like it or not US and European understanding of privacy and free speech are different, from a US viewpoint telling someone they cannot tell the truth just because it embarrasses another individual makes no sense, From a traditional European view the reverse is equally silly. It is not possible for Google or any other company to be right here.

As it happens European media bodies, entirely separately from Google dislike this ruling, it makes it harder to find prurient stories, so they have painted the ruling as something it is not in order to make it seem ridiculous. On the other hand super-injunctions ARE ridiculous and equally doomed to fail. We live in a world where searching for things is easier than ever before, and that is nearly always a good thing.

Sun of a beach! Java biz founder loses battle to keep his shore private

Jeff Green

Re: Isn't this a federal issue?

Even the inland ones?

Heavy VPN users are probably pirates, says BBC

Jeff Green

The biggest issue here has been missed by most. The BBC is a PUBLIC SERVICE BROADCASTER!

Its major goal should be to have its output as widely viewed as possible. Whilst I accept they could be upset by marginal loss of advertising revenue it will be a vanishingly small amount of money and is best recompensed by asking the ISP of anyone they believe to be infringing being asked to send a polite note saying "As owners to the rights to the material we would be grateful if you watched through our official channels, the advertising revenue from these is used to help fun the creation of new material."

Nothing more is needed.

(And I do pay the licence fee!)

Cracking copyright law: How a simian selfie stunt could make a monkey out of Wikipedia

Jeff Green

Re: It really doesn't matter

I, on the other hand, am a "producer" of copyright material for which I am paid. I am also paid for non-copyright work. I believe that both need to be correctly compensated and have never argued against the existence of copyright. What I object to is the absurd extensions of copyright thqat have disgraced our world for years.

In what way does increasing the copyright term for already existing work encourage creativity and extend availability of art to the rest of us? In what way does preventing transformative reuse help society? What creativity is encouraged by attempts to copyright alphabetical lists? And what creativity is encouraged by allowing people to be rewarded for allowing their property to be stolen!

The camera owner made a great play of not being involved in the creation, had he told a different tale he would have had an arguable case, but the picture would not have been newsworthy, what he appears to want is a cake and a full stomach ...

Jeff Green

Re: Recent news on Page 2

Except according to the photographer he didn't give the camera to the monkey, it stole it.

Jeff Green

Re: It really doesn't matter

Your opinion of Jimmy Wales really doesn't matter, the photographer made a big deal of this photo being entirely created by the monkey and thereby expressly putting Wikipaedia in the right. It certainly won't affect my giving of money and time to the project, and it may very well tempt a lot of other people who object to the insane copyright maximalist views of their "rights". Wikipaedia is going in to bat for the public domain, that's you and me!

EE rolls out London bus pay-by-bonk app – only fandoids need apply

Jeff Green

Re: to quote Flanders and Swann

Hold very tight please ...

Ting Ting!

Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?

Jeff Green

Re: Realistic percentages

10% is rather high on current estimates Scotland has around 8.3% of the UK population and that's falling as the population of South Eastern England (pronounced London) rises fast, so by the time any independence came into effect they may be looking at around 7.5% of the revenues.

Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS

Jeff Green

Re: Sometimes, nobody inside cares what *you* think

localhost doesn't have to be, it can be any address, although to fit with the standards that should be within the range. On my machine it is because I am too lazy to rewrite a very badly written hack I created years ago that used ...

ISPs 'blindsided' by UK.gov's 'emergency' data retention and investigation powers law

Jeff Green

Today I broke the mail server, good luck getting the mails back! There has to be an upside to everything!

Windows XP market share GROWS AGAIN, outstrips Win 8.1 surge

Jeff Green

It is high time that companies were required to provide access to software maintenance for as log as a product is in use, this could either be inhouse or they could simply publish the source code and allow others to do the job for them. It would be interesting to see which way Microsoft jumped.

Moto G: Google's KitKat bruiser could knock out, bury Landfill Android

Jeff Green

Re: Here is my proper review

I shelled out the enormous sum of £107 for a 7 inch "phablet". It is ludicrously large, but I added a £5 bluetooth headset and it wasn't anymore, it was short of memory until ebay sent me 32GB for a tenner, its battery life ain't great, but it came with a spare battery that takes seconds to change over on the rare days of heavy candy crushing when it wants feeding by 8pm. It has two sim cards in so I get my company and personal calls on one phone.

Yes I still have my Samsung Galaxy 3 but I wouldn't buy it again now, and it's pretty much my reserve phone.

It runs everything I need, makes a great cheap gps system in the car and is even big enough to work on. Cheap and Chinese made it certainly is, but it won't be filling a hole in the ground any time soon!

NO! Radio broadcasters snub 'end of FM' DAB radio changeover

Jeff Green

I have a small FM radio I take to cricket matches, on one AAA battery it lasts the whole season. A cheap (pronounced disastrously expensive) DAB radio struggles to do the whole of one game on an AA. On the DAB radio the content is frequently unobtainable, or breaks up randomly, poor quality FM still brings you the content, DAB just brings you squawks and clicks. When what I want to listen to isn't available on real radio I usually resort to internet radio via 3g which comes to my smartphone and seems to be much more battery friendly, less prone to interference and has hundreds of times more stations available.

DAB is completely unsuitable as a replacement for FM, in fact it is very hard to think of a use for it at all!

Doctor Who nicked my plot and all I got was a mention in this lousy feature

Jeff Green

Original stories

If you can name six original stories published in the time that Dr Who has been on the air I'll be amazed! It is an oft quoted maxim, and a reasonably accurate one, that there are only seven plots for stories:- rags to riches, there and back, a quest, comedy, tragedy, monster and rebirth, a Dr Who story is probably not going to include rags to riches so if you want true originality you have a maximum of 6 episodes!

Apple's Steve Jobs was a SEX-crazed World War II fighter pilot, says ex

Jeff Green

Re: The other flaw...

In round terms ...

In the year 2011 there were 7,000 million of us, the birth rate was around 25 per thousand in 1995 there were around 5,750 million of us, the birth rate was around 30, and between those dates over 1,000 million people had died. Next date I have is 1950, 3,400 million 5 billion deaths in the 45 years you can keep going with these figures, do a little bit of adding up and come to the conclusion that somewhere between 5 and 8% of all the people who have lived since the first approximations to history (say around 6000 BC?) are alive now.

Nokia tears devs' hearts out, shutters Symbian and Meego stores early

Jeff Green

Not quite

At the time they appointed Elop Symbian was the dominant smartphone platform and still growing, if not as fast as Apple's offering. It only went into decline, and disastrously steep decline at that, after Elop told the world he was killing it.

Microsoft: Surface is DEAD. Long live the Surface 2!

Jeff Green

Re: How much an Ultrabook costs?

10.1 is a linear dimension increasing that by 10% gives you 20% more screen area ...

BBC releases MYSTERY RIDDLE poster for Doctor Who anniversary episode

Jeff Green

Re: @Idocrase Spitfires

Although it is true the Hurricane had a higher maximum ceiling than the spitfire, mainly due to its larger wing area its performance at altitude was poor and the effect operating height was around 3000 feet lower than the spitfire's. Spitfires also had higher speed and overall agility. Hurricanes being slower and heavier provided a more stable gun platform. Minor damage to Hurricanes was initially easier to repair, because the ground crews knew all about fabric and dope but as time went on repair crews became equally adept at the two aircraft and availability for the two types throughout the BoB were very similar.

In practice the spitfires were deployed at higher altitudes and used to attack the fighters while the more numerous Hurricanes went for the bombers. The comparison between the two types is best made by looking at their service lives. If Hurricanes were better and cheaper it is rather doubtful they would have been phased out quite so early!

In comparison to the German types those who flew both say picking a Mk1 or 2 Spitfire or an Me109 would be tough, but the injector on the 109's engine certainly gave it an advantage in "getting away" as it kept working under negative G loads, it carried cannon which did a lot more damage than a Browning however its turning circle was much wider.

Microsoft's Nokia plan: WHACK APPLE AND GOOGLE

Jeff Green

Congratulations to Elop!

Mission accomplished, reduce the value of the phone division to Ballmer's target price and then you can come home!

Paypal makes man 1000x as rich as the ENTIRE HUMAN RACE

Jeff Green

Re: Are you telling me...

Baseball? Isn't that cricket for "special" people?

Google launches broadband balloons, radio astronomy frets

Jeff Green

Re: More Google Irresponsible Stupidity.

Completely pointless and irresponsible. It can never work, just like the car, the telephone, the wireless, electric light etc. etc. .

I agree it sounds more than a little mad but that doesn't mean it won't work or be useful. The point of these Google ideas is to investigate high risk schemes. They're also working on a space elevator. This project is very interesting on a number of levels, the computer based stratospheric steering in particular.

I cannot see this ever being the way to get regular Internet access to a population, but during disaster recovery efforts it could be invaluable.

US Supremes: Human genes can't be patented

Jeff Green

cDNA patentability

The judgement does not rule on the patentability of cDNA overall, it merely says that the section of the act under consideration here does not rule it unpatentable.

From the judgement

"As a result, cDNA is not a “product of nature” and is patent eligible under §101, except insofar as very short series of DNA may have no intervening introns to remove when creating cDNA. In that situation, a short strand of cDNA may be indistinguishable from natural DNA.9"

That 9 at the end leads you to this footnote

"9 We express no opinion whether cDNA satisfies the other statutory requirements of patentability. See, e.g., 35 U. S. C. §§102, 103, and 112; Brief for United States as Amicus Curiae 19, n. 5. "

The cDNA issue remains to make another bunch of lawyers richer ...

Google's 'power to switch off the lights in Europe' has 'chilling effect' - rivals

Jeff Green

Re: Butt-hurt Microsoft

It's perfectly OK for them to crush M$ services if they do so by making better products. It would not be OK for them to abuse their market dominance but Microsoft's band of brothers haven't actually presented any evidence that they have done so, merely screamed that they aren't playing fair.

Review: HTC One

Jeff Green

Re: No SD card slot, no removable battery

same two bad features, but half the price!

Windows Phone 8 support to end in 2014

Jeff Green

Re: Backwards Compatibility

Exactly, they consistently provide no backwards compatibility at all.

BYOD is a PITA: Employee devices cost firms £61 a month

Jeff Green

Horses for courses

I have been a "sys-admin" for part of the time since the mid 1980s, and a system user for all of the time since the late 1970s. In all that time I have never come across a company IT department (including ones I was running) that got the right kit to make all the workers as productive as they could be, never come across one that got the best possible deal on the hardware they did buy, nor one that did a halfway decent job on security.

The trouble is that IT departments know about IT for IT departments, and a bit about IT for other departments, and damn all about the jobs other departments do.

People in other departments no about their jobs and a bit about IT for their jobs and damn all about IT in general.

There is no one size fits all solution, some people and some jobs fit a stalinist IT policy, and some are better in a free for all. Most are better somewhere in between. BYOD has always existed, either officially or via the "pump-controller"/"stationery supplies" route, it always will. and corporate lock downs have always and will always exist, to varying degrees.

Reports that one or other approach is bad are certain to be wrong and are almost always written on behalf of people who want to sell something. Then followed up by journalists who want to fill column inches. They will then be commented on by ill-informed zealots (like me). The world will continue spinning and people will continue working, some security breaches will happen (in both stalinist and anarchic organisations). Get over it.


Apple slips bomb into ITC filing: Samsung being PROBED by US gov

Jeff Green

Re: Double standards


Apple are trying to prevent people making tablets with rectangular screens, I suppose Samsung could leave that bit out ...

ReDigi fights for right to sell used digital music

Jeff Green

The music industry would have a stronger case if they didn't pay the artists the rate for a "sale" there are parallel cases going on round the world where artists are demanding to be paid the rates for licensing their music for digital downloads, surprisingly the music publishers see things differently in those cases!

China reveals new strategy of stockpiling rare earths

Jeff Green

Rare Earths are NOT rare

They are everywhere!!!

As others have pointed out the Chinese only have a monopoly because they cut the price to gain one, cornering the market isn't exactly a new strategy if Western governments were short sighted enough to let them do it then more fool they!

There are tons of spoil from other mines that contain lanthanide ores anywhere where copper tin and other metals have been mined we simply need to refine it, when the price goes up that will happen.

China has 30% of the world's "known" reserves, but a tiny percentage of the reserves that would be known if we looked!

Java jury finds Google guilty of infringement: Now what?

Jeff Green

More than a little misleading

Google (along with everyone else in computing and any even vaguely related field who isn't Oracle) contend that APIs are not subject to copyright. The judge will decide if they are, but before doing so he instructed the jury to assume that they are, and then decide if they were copied. Since Google didn't deny their API was the same this wasn't a difficult finding.

HOWEVER the jury did NOT find Google "guilty" of infringing the copyright, Google claim fair use and absent a finding from the jury on that issue there isn't any finding of copyright infringment, just of copying. The headline as written is akin to calling a policeman guilty of murder if he shoots a gunman who is aiming a gun at his head, the court would very likely decide the action was justifiable even if the judge first asks the jury to decide if the policeman did in fact pull the trigger.

China's rare earth policy backs Apple into a corner

Jeff Green

Rare Earth Elements

The "Rare Earths" is the name of the group, we are stuck with it for historical reasons but most of the elements are not particularly rare, they are fairly hard to separate from each other, but much easier than many other common industrial chemical processes. For a long time they were almost unused so no-one much bothered about mining and refining them, then the Chinese saw an opportunity to earn foreign currency as use started to grow and we let them take a near monopoly.

However if they get really short there are millions of tons of spoil heaps in Cornwall just waiting to be mined!

IT guy answers daughter's Facebook rant by shooting her laptop

Jeff Green

Not necessarily

"You know if you have physical access to a linux laptop you can reset the root password and log in right?"

Not if the machine is set up to prevent that you don't. Encrypting the disk is hardly difficult and short of access to a supercomputer and endless time you ain't getting in without the password.

Use iBooks Author, only Apple can ever publish the result

Jeff Green

The way out

It says if you charge for it you must do so via the Apple store, but you can give it away free, so give it away free to your identical twin brother and grant him the right to sell it wherever he wishes, or even anywhere except on Apple if you like, and you are compliant with the licence terms.

Famous 'Silhouette' Flash illusion unravelled

Jeff Green


She spins one way then the other for me, am I just weird?

Data breach howlers to get up to £500,000 fine

Jeff Green

Can the Government afford this?

Given it is mostly the Home Office that gives data away!

Iranian rocket puts satellite into orbit

Jeff Green

UK Satellite launch

The first (and last!) satellite successfully put into orbit on a UK designed and built rocket was Prospero and was launched on a Black Arrow rocket a programme that was then suspended. If you are a really sad individual you can still listen to Prospero's signals I believe ...

NASA working on boomless supersonic jets

Jeff Green


Flight Using Careful Kinetic Enhancement Devices

NetApp ready to rumble in Sun IP case

Jeff Green

Yet another trouble with patents

When (in the US at least I assume also here) the courts appear to assume the patents are valid (ask RIM who were forced to pay out royalties on patents that turned out to be invalid because the judge refused to wait) Net App want to get to court fast so they can win some money before the court realises the whole suit is specious.


Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021