* Posts by Fred Flintstone

2985 posts • joined 9 Jun 2009

Malaysian Police crush crypto-mining kit to punish electricity thieves

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I wonder if they accept bitcoin as payment?


US offers Julian Assange time in Australian prison instead of American supermax if he loses London extradition fight

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Re: Disgusting

The land of the free

Sorry, that was just a spelling mistake.

It's actually the land of the fee. HTH.

The human-devoid AI-powered Saildrone Surveyor ship just made it to Hawaii from SF

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Re: Optional sensible title here

Only if you take the laser off for the ride.

Where's the boss? Ah right, thorough deep-dive audit. On the boardroom table. Gotcha

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Re: Cash

.. yet I never, ever lose count. Weird, that.


Focus on the camera, mobile devs: 48MP shooters about to become the sweet spot

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Re: Why the obsession with MP?

A decent lens can comfortably cost multiples of what your smartphone is sold for.

There is an astonishing amount of engineering involved in creating good optical lenses, and it gets even more complex with the whole anamorphic side of things.

Kaspersky Password Manager's random password generator was about as random as your wall clock

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I've been using SecureSafe for ages. Even the free version has password inheritance features, so someone I trust has the inheritance password which, when used, will give access to the passwords I have so designated, but only after a few days.

I, however, get a daily countdown message from the moment that "clock" is started, so I can cancel it and reset the password, which stops any abuse of that right of access.

Simple, effective and, astonishingly, free..

By the way, I'm not worried about social media passwords - I don't use it :).

IBM email fiasco complicates sales deals, is worse than biz is letting on – sources

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So, let me guess..

You emailed them for comment, didn't you?

Come one, you can tell us, we won't laugh (much).


8-month suspended sentence for script kiddie who DDoS'd Labour candidate in runup to 2019 UK general election

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I could not agree more (I tried :) ).

Admitting an attack was "basic" amounts to accepting culpability for not even putting an effort in, so every single breach is always deemed to be the work of "sophisticated" "hackers" who deploy what must be sheer magic to break in, like using the immeasurably complex and impossible to memorise login combination of admin/admin.

Given what I've seen so far of a lot of these "hacks", the people who run these sites probably live in homes with locks that you could pick with a toothpick without even slowing down and must exclusively use 0000 or 1234 for PIN codes.

Six years in the making, Vivaldi Mail arrives alongside version 4.0 of the company's browser

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Re: Please forgive my ignorance...

According to Google it's Icelandig and means "with translation options"

Cheers :)

BOFH: But we think the UK tax authorities would be VERY interested in how we used COVID support packages

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Re: Special Compliance

Obviously you have to clean that up, because of COVID risks. Can't be too careful.


USB-C levels up and powers up to deliver 240W in upgraded power delivery spec

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Re: Gaming laptops

We need a standardized H2O plug specification.

Gardena, Hozelock ...


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Re: Dissipation?

I think you may have just plausibly suggested that new chipsets for this may include a mandatory temperature sensor. I don't think that would be a bad idea anyway.

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Re: I predict excitement

Well, that's the exact reason USB-C cables have chips in the connectors. The cable tells the power supply what it's capable of.

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Re: Coming soon

It's probably going to be the reverse soon given the way "G" specs drive higher and higher power use: you'll need a Tesla to keep your 10G mobile phone powered..

What to do about open source vulnerabilities? Move fast, says Linux Foundation expert

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"the protection mechanism must not depend on attacker ignorance"

That strikes me as basically a variant of Kerckhoffs' 19th principle for cryptography.

More power to web apps, cries Google, and more privacy, too

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So, in summary,

.. the fox is promising new ways to protect the henhouse, as long as you let him do it from inside the henhouse.

OK, got it.

And the answer is still no.

Are you ready to take a stand? Flexispot E7 motorised desk should handle whatever you dump on it – but it's not cheap

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Re: "Disgusting cable management"

Decent cable management is a simple job.

One cable trunk with open slots fitted at the wall side underneath the work surface (two if you have sensitive audio), and one leading down to whatever power source you have (I have a UPS) and cables are out of sight because the eye overlooks straight lines.

How effective is this? Well, I have a glass, see-through desk (hence my use of Logitech Anywhere MX mice, they work on glass), and you don't see any cables. Yes, you have to spend some time lying on your back underneath the desk looping it all in and then put the lid on it, but once done it's good for a long time, and it's not that hard to add or remove things later either.

This idea works near miracles behind a stereo and TV set, and it makes it far easier to keep it clean, very helpful with an allergy sufferer in the house (until she becomes allergic to cable trays, of course).

I used to use black Betaduct 50x50mm for it which came in 2m lengths, but it appears it's no longer made now so I'll now have to find an alternative..

App Tracking: Apps plead for users to press allow, but 85% of Apple iOS consumers are not opting in

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Ditto on Grammarly, and bonus points for deliberately misspelling it :)

Tesla Autopilot is a lot dumber than CEO Musk claims, says Cali DMV after speaking to the software's boss

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OK, now I'm curious, Worse than what used to be called Place d"Etoile in Paris?

What are the challenges in Athens? Genuine question.

Helsinki Syndrome: Ubuntu utterly fails to boot on metro

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Re: Nemo propheta in patria

Well, even Monty Python sang about it.

I occasionally send that to a friend in Helsinki - I'm not sure he's representative of all Fins, but his sense of humour is *very* well developed so good natured windups are simply part and parcel of our interactions :).

University duo thought it would be cool to sneak bad code into Linux as an experiment. Of course, it absolutely backfired

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Re: Place your bets...

in a fairly restricted field

Nicely put :)

Rupert and Zuck, sitting in a tree, P-A-Y-I-N-G

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Re: Obligatory Honest Government Advert

Thanks, I was about to dig that one up as well.

They pretty much tear this agreement to shreds - those ads are IMHO fantastic and ought to win some sort of award.

Apple's app transparency rules: Google's privacy labels for Chrome and Search on iOS highlighted by DuckDuckGo

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About Google's terms and privacy statements

Allow me to refer you once again to this rather excellent Freefall cartoon as it absolutely nails what they are doing.

You're welcome.

BOFH: 7 jars of Marmite, a laptop and a good time

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Re: Where can I find a link

Ah, the dietary equivalent of the emacs vs vi wars.


Linus Torvalds labels Super Bowl 'violent version of egg-and-spoon race'

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Re: As an American, I can tell you some Super Bowl secrets

For those who could not quite follow that comment, here is some help.


Nothing new since the microwave: Let's get those home tech inventors cooking

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Re: what the fuck is wrong with using the key, anyway?

That reminds me on an Elektor joke circuit they published years ago: it was an heated key to defrost a doorlock. It was basically a managed shortcut that would heat up a power transistor so the assembly got toasty. It was perfectly functional and would heat quite well, you just had to plug it into the cigar lighter socket ..


In this week’s episode of Texas Attorney General: Google faces lawsuit accusing it of crushing ad-tech rivals

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Re: Orange Turnip again

He might be out of office then, but clearing the stench of his influence will take years.

Let's... drawer a veil over why this laser printer would decide to stop working randomly

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Re: Never under estimate the ability of a user to out stupid you

Hmm. If that worked you could give the gloves to someone else, so I don't think this passes the logic test.

But then again, neither do most end users :)

With less than two months left, let's check in on Brexit: All IT systems are up and running and ready to go, says no one

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Re: Have an upvote

That's the thing with these brexitters... Never happy.

Well, OK, but Farage is in a class of his own. Also because nobody wants to sit with him, of course.

Tech support scammer dialed random number and Australian Police’s cybercrime squad answered

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I am perfectly OK with scams and marketing calls ..

.. as long as they do it on a 0900 premium number so my time is paid for.

Heck, I may even throw in some heavy breathing, for free. You should hear my labrador when he's had a long run..


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Re: Can you got to your windows computer ...

I really should keep a corded phone around to do the rapid hangup trick to mess with them next time.

Damn. Now I want a landline again. :)

Hey! It's Friday!

Apple emits iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, macOS patches to fix three hijack-my-device flaws exploited in the wild

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Bad timing

From a date perspective, next week Friday would have been more fun :)

Can we stop megacorps from using and abusing our data? That ship has sailed, ex-NSA lawyer argues in new book

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Re: "cumbersome to read, difficult to understand"

I will again offer up this most excellent Freefall cartoon.

There's a shocking amount of truth in it as there is in truth little legislation to curtail such an approach.

I recall there was once a project that gave policies and terms a TL;DR readability score, but I cannot find it now. A shame, because it was a laudable idea, but maybe it floundered because our definition of what is "normal" and "acceptable" has experienced a wrenching, IMHO near tectonic shift..

Office 365 for the iPad will feel a little more desktop-ish now Microsoft has tossed it trackpad, mouse support

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They're also easier to replace. Saves time, and you don't need to keep spares as they can be quickly obtained in a shop or online, and restored that way too if they use cloud based storage - and that almost anywhere in the semi-civilised world.

Apple tipped to go full wireless by 2021, and you're all still grumbling about a headphone jack

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Re: My goose is cooked

Hopefully they can minimise some of the efficiencies by only having the charging circuit active when a device is detected

Most wireless chargers do that already, also to avoid heating up non-chargeable metal things that happen to stray onto them.

That said, my concern is more with data transfer. WiFi is still a heck of a lot slower than cable.

Oracle starts to lose patience with Solaris holdouts

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Re: Why?

I just loved the engineering on their pizza boxes. They were superbly put together.

The vid-confs drinking game: Down a shot of brandy every time someone titters 'Sorry, I was on mute'

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Re: fish leather is a thing

I wouldn't mind one of piranha leather, to catch pick pockets..

The perils of building a career on YouTube: Guitar teacher's channel nearly deleted after music publisher complains

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Re: Isn't this a grey area?

That is a fantastic video. Thanks for that link.

Onwards! To the airport and adventure! And this rather lachrymose Linux screen

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Re: I wouldn't call it "Linux despair" ...

Most modern barcode readers pretend to be a USB connected keyboard, even the cordless dongle ones, and there are also variants which act as a Bluetooth keyboard (I have two of those, and they tend to also read QR codes as they're camera based, not LED/laser scan). Most of these can also be programmed to hit Return after a scan.

So, as long as your software uses keyboard input routines it should not be hard to replace the barcode readers with something from Amazon.

Look for the name "Netum" - they tend to be reasonably well documented and are usually in stock.

As we stand on the precipice of science fiction into science fact, people say: Hell yeah, I want to augment my eyesight!

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There's also the problem with door openings as they may not be high enough :)

(which reminds me of that cartoon with a chin-up bar fitted in a door frame and an unconscious person on the floor :) ).

Bad apples: US customs seize OnePlus earbuds thinking they're knock-off AirPods

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Hmm, do we qualify this as a "person"?

"It's life, Jim, but not as we know it"

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I like your thinking :)

US ponders tech export ban on SMIC, China's biggest chipmaker

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So, translating this..

.. the Trump administration is trying to see if they can gain from threatening with a ban, either in votes, or in the most expensive Trump hotel reservations.

Cynic, moi?

Google wants to listen in to whatever you get up to in hotel rooms

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Let's turn this around..

Play back a speech by Enver Hoxha and any other confusing rubbish you can think off. Horror movies, cop shows, a Trump speech, you name it. Any old rubbish will do.

Intercepts become much more fun when you know it takes place, and as there's no camera yet (IMHO guaranteed to be in the next hardware release) the device will have a hard time picking up something useful. Create credible deniability from the start.

Apple: Don't close MacBooks with a webcam cover on, you might damage the display

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Simple solution..

Download Oversight as an extra safety layer and be done with it.

Anything else I can help with?

Dems take a crack at banning Feds from using facial-recog tech. Congress will put it on todo list after 'learn Klingon'

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Re: If you want to see the scary bit ..

Bizarre uses of facial recognition? In public toilets there you have to look at the camera for 3 seconds in order for toilet paper to be dispensed.

Does that also work with a strained face (on account of the specific circumstances)?


One year ago, Apple promised breakthrough features to help iPhone, iPad, Mac owners with disabilities. It failed them

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Re: Lack of engagement with disable people

You may have just given Apple an argument for poor battery life.


Not so nice, we investigated them twice: EU opens double whammy of inquiries into Apple's biz practices

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Re: Not only Apple in the EU's sights

They'll do Google AFTER they have finished Google-ing for evidence in the first two cases.

They're not silly :).


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