* Posts by Charles 9

15728 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

TomTom bill bomb: Why am I being charged for infotainment? I sold my car last year, rages Reg reader

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: NEVER put your home address in your GPS!

Not in the UK, but in most states in the US, yes, primarily because of its large size and cross-jurisdiction issues. Often the first words you hear out of a traffic cop during a stop is "License and registration, please?" (I speak from firsthand experience).

Moore's Law is deader than corduroy bell bottoms. But with a bit of smart coding it's not the end of the road

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Dennard scaling

"The cosine transforms (or similar) used in video compression are easily parallelised."

Not if they're dependent on the ones BEFORE them, and the most efficient video codecs are INTER-frame, meaning you can't do the next frame until you do the one. This is why x264 didn't go multithreaded for a dog's age and even now takes approaches that appear to have tradeoffs in quality or speed.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Hmm. 5nm iw 23 atoms wide.

Can't rely on the atom width at paths that small. Once you get that small, quantum phenomena come into play. Thus you have issues like quantum tunneling where subatomic particles (like electrons) suddenly appear on the other side of a barrier (which is a problem when the barrier in question is a transistor).

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Dennard scaling

But what happens when you get caught between Scylla and Charybdis: stuck with an inherently serial job that requires a lot of raw computing power BUT can't be parallelized? Or even just a job that is highly serial (like high-ratio compression, including video compression)?

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: optimize / optimise

"You are not a real programmer unless you remember when an assembler multiplication of 200x5 could be made faster than 5x200."

Unless every little cycle counted (in a limited-resource environment, I'll grant you), the difference really wouldn't be all that great (if you take the shift-and-add approach, as both types of instructions are usually pretty cheap time-wise, you'd only need one additional shift-and-add--4+1 versus 128+64+8).

Google to bury indicator for Extended Validation certs in Chrome because users barely took notice

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: It Doesn't Seem to Help Lusers, lets Hide It!

"Why is it assumed to be a UX flaw when the user doesn't understand browser security features? Wouldn't a better solution be a campaign to educate the users?"

You assume they're willing or even able to learn, in which case, why not just require a license to use the Internet?

Thing is, most people just want to get crap done. Yesterday, if at all possible. Recall Click Fatigue.

Android 11 will let users stop device-makers from killing background apps, says Google

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Android 9 is unusable

Something tells me you're trying to squeeze blood out of a rock. Why not just get yourself a used laptop, max out its memory, put Linux or whatever on it, and have done with it? Your screen will be larger, you'll get a beefier machine under the bonnet, and you'll have more control over your destiny.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Android 9 is unusable

"I have yet to find an Android tablet or device I can use as a professional working product. I am reluctant to upgrade, for sake for seeing what incompetent shit the next version of Android brings."

Better prepare yourself, then. The increased memory usage of even the most basic apps make even 2GB pretty much useless for everything but a one-trick pony (at which point, why use an Android phone). I was forced to abandon my Note 4 because of this and a network glitch specific to those models.

Unless you're willing to throw up your hands and say, "Stop the Internet! I wanna get off!"

Built to last: Time to dispose of the disposable, unrepairable brick

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: My undead laptop and me

If it's a PATA device, I wonder if there can be some practicality to replacing it with a Compact Flash card and an adapter?

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: My undead laptop and me

What about the ones designed for dashcams and other constant-use devices? Those have to be built for write endurance and temperature extremes but not necessarily for raw speed.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Tlmlng Belt

Last I checked, ship (and locomotive) engines are build with different design specs. They can be built larger and are designed for lots of raw power given with normal work loads. That said, I don't think ship and locomotive engineers are too concerned with getting the last drop of efficiency out of their fuel, compared to, say, a light aircraft pilot. Have you seen all the knobs and switches on some of those things?

Or, to put it TL;DR, if simple really were all that, why don't rotary engines rule the road?

You may be distracted by the pandemic but FYI: US Senate panel OK's backdoors-by-the-backdoor EARN IT Act

Charles 9 Silver badge

Then they'll just get you for conspiracy to commit terrorism, at least until they ban encryption altogether. Until then, they can always resort to parallel construction.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: About those "weak" private ciphers......and those UK crimes.....

Look, if they REALLY want you, there's always Parallel Construction.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Let the Games begin & may the odds be ever in your favour :P

You assume Joe Stupid understands all this. Recall 2016...

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Let the Games begin & may the odds be ever in your favour :P

And if the government replies that Facebook and the like are trying to play the Big Brother card when in fact THEY'RE the Big Brother?

LibreOffice community protests at promotion of paid-for editions, board says: 'LibreOffice will always be free software'

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: In effect

But the OTHER risk and fear is that, without SOME kind of revenue stream, the money dries up and the whole works gets left in the dirt. It's a dilemma of lack of funds where not enough people are willing to give, full stop. So, do you come begging or do you just let it go?

Linux Mint 20 isn't exactly bursting with freshness but, hey, there's kernel 5.4 and it's a long-term support release

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Well, no

Oh? What about spearmint versus peppermint? Both are minty, but you wouldn't call them one flavor.

Facebook accused of trying to bypass GDPR, slurp domain owners' personal Whois info via an obscure process

Charles 9 Silver badge

Good luck. Gibson's Sprawl is already happening. Soon Facebook will be powerful enough to put governments under their heel and become sovereign unto itself.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Which is why I also mentioned "degrees of separation". If legislators have gotten wise, corporate lawyers have gotten wisER in the meantime.

Charles 9 Silver badge

No good. Transnationals usually have good-enough legal teams to lawyer their way out of these kinds of things: even the dreaded "global turnover" fines (they just find ways to reduce the "global turnover" or start using degrees of separation).

After huffing and puffing for years, US senators unveil law to blow the encryption house down with police backdoors

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: such priorities

Actually, it's REgress, as "re" in this case repesents REVERSAL. "Pro" and "con" only work in the "for" and "against" context. "-gress" uses a "forward" and "backward" context.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: If this ever happens....

The Internet still depends on means of communication. All the US has to do is control all the endpoints. Granted, there are more than usual, but they're still finite and likely well-known.

Balkanization of the Internet has been in consideration for some time.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: So once the Government gets its way....

But some would say that it made sense to give the most populous places like Philly then and say New York now. Why are individuals not considered so highly in this kind of system? Are they no less important than the areas in which they live?

Frankly, perhaps what's needed is some kind of Connecticut Compromise in which votes are counted more than once: say by person, by district, and by state, best two out of three. That way there is much less room to complain as three different political units are considered at once. Also reduces the power of swing states (which will exist in any single system, simply due to uneven population distribution).

Charles 9 Silver badge

And if they DO put up...and litter the stash with "disgusting" stuff like granny porn (or worse, gramps porn)?

Apple to keep Intel at Arm's length: macOS shifts from x86 to homegrown common CPU arch, will run iOS apps

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Dec Rainbow

But I'd have to wonder about the price tag. I still remember observing those computers in the late 80's/early 90's but also recalled the price listings. Plus the fact that PC tech had moved on by then.

Charles 9 Silver badge

"People lost their damn minds when the iMac came without a floppy drive and was all USB. "Madness!" they cried from behind their Windows PC. "Apple is going to destroy itself!""

Apple may have been a little ahead of the curve there, but not by much. By the turn USB sticks in sizes of 8MB and more showed the way forward, given they weren't as restrained by physics as magnetic disks and later optical discs.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Cock of the walk one week, feather duster the next

Well, what's the state of the art of video editing on both platforms these days? I know professional video studios commonly swore by Apple machines in the past.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Then you "should" be okay with just a recompile

Renting can refer to both directions. For Adobe's side, it's usually termed "renting out".

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Keyword here is "maintained"

If the software is THAT old, it was probably built against the old PowerMacs and so on and should be put in a virtual machine in any event. There's no way to run 90's DOS programs and 16-bit Windows apps natively in a modern Windows machine given the lack of things like ports and so on, so why can't virtualization be used, unless we're talking custom hardware like that lathe I read about here years back (that HAD to be XP because the custom controller board was ISA and ISA was dropped in Vista).

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Compatibility is gonna be a problem.

"I would sometimes prefer old stuff on Windows to break and fail. There are so many lazy software companies that still say "requires Internet Explorer x" or even Windows 7. Even under support contracts (niche software usually)."

Sometimes, it's a matter of the software company not existing anymore, meaning they're kinda stuck with it and lack the budget to contract a replacement.

Chrome extensions are 'the new rootkit' say researchers linking surveillance campaign to Israeli registrar Galcomm

Charles 9 Silver badge
FAIL

Re: Maturity.

Still, it springs to mind the old "give a man a fish" proverb. Problem becomes, how do you teach a man to fish when that man is THAT stupid, as in "teach this man to fish, he'll starve to death on the pier a month later with the rod still in his hands"?

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

Charles 9 Silver badge
Mushroom

"If it requires an app or any kind of login outside of my own network to be used... it's not being purchased."

So what happens when (not if) EVERY air conditioner requires it? And it's not like it's getting any colder on this dirt ball, meaning alternative methods of cooling may not be viable for much longer, either...

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Next great idea

And if you're going somewhere where photo labs aren't guaranteed? That's the primary reason I keep a PhotoSmart.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Next great idea

I'll believe it when I see one of them make a portable CIS photo printer. Photos are the one reason I use inkjets, and usually while on international trips where photo labs aren't guaranteed.

Oh, and HP is taking a CIS route, too, with the Smart Tank printers.

For years, the internet giants have held on dear to their get-out-of-jail-free card. Here are those trying to take that away

Charles 9 Silver badge

The problem becomes when an issue has no gray area: when it becomes strictly "for-or-against". Objectivity is impossible here as you'll just be hounded as being against: usually both sides at once.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Allowing the DoJ to determine who is a "bad samaratin"

Then you can't trust anyone because someone with sufficient power will just take over with sheer force.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Bots and idiots

They'll just figure out how to beat the Turing tests. Research into machine learning and AI will only improve. Plus there's always Indian click shops...

It's tricky to block VPNs without being seen as supporting oppressive regimes.

ZFS co-creator boots 'slave' out of OpenZFS codebase, says 'casual use' of term is 'unnecessary reference to a painful experience'

Charles 9 Silver badge
Joke

Re: Master and Servants

Oh brother. Next we'll be hearing drarves offended by being greeted "Hi" (What's so high about me?!), or even people just getting ticked off being called, "you" (You?! Who's you?! You talkin' to me?! I have a name, and yes, I expect you to know it!).

When open source isn't enough: Fancy a de-Googled Chromium? How about some Microsoft-free VS Code?

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Things we turned off

3a. One must assume one does NOT have a brain, otherwise one would require a license to use the Internet.

3b. Too often, that site you MUST see REQUIRES JavaScript to even load, and it probably has no viable alternative (think an official product support site or a government website), so you either plunge or go without...and probably not get your job done.

'Beyond stupid': Linus Torvalds trashes 5.8 Linux kernel patch over opt-in Intel CPU bug mitigation

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Obligatory Covid-19 analogy

AIUI, relapses have occurred, but the jury's still out on just HOW they're happening. In addition to mutated strains, other possibilities includes a dormant virus waking up again, immune system limitations (like in the common cold), and non-viral syndromes.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Obligatory Covid-19 analogy

"Incorrect. A vaccine makes you sick and triggers an immune response."

How can a killed virus make you sick? The trick is that an immune response doesn't necessarily trigger on illness but on the presence of intruders. Otherwise, a killed virus wouldn't work. Now, it's not always possible to use a killed virus, which is why you then have to use an attenuated virus instead, but they DO caveat that such a virus has the potential to make you sick.

Charles 9 Silver badge
Thumb Down

Re: @devTrail - What kind of opt-in was it?

By that definition, even that isn't really secure, as one could probably find a way to send energy into the computer through the vault and vacuum and then read information back wirelessly.

Meaning, one of the qualifications of having a secure computer is one a person can actually put to practical use. Otherwise, one should provide a Turing-style proof that the only secure computer is one destroyed beyond reconstruction.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: git broke English

Does it? Or does it simply mean to stop pulling (create the absence of pulling, IOW)? Then you have dispull, depull, and so on...

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: git broke English

What about undo?

Seems to be "un" can be a bit broader: not just the absence of something (as part of an adjective) but also to create that absence (as part of a verb). Meaning uninstalling, undressing, etc. make sense as you're removing (creating the absence) of the installation, clothes, etc.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: @devTrail - What kind of opt-in was it?

The tri-core POWER-based CPU in the Xbox 360 was relatively simple, and it was noted to be somewhat of a lightweight compared to the Cell CPU of the PS3 (both ran at 3.2GHz IIRC).

Seems to me simple isn't going to cut it with modern workloads; its versatility will be too limited.

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Real Fix

NO, because we still need high performance. We can BS around a wrong answer, but we can't BS around a missed deadline.

We spent billions building atom smashers – and now boffins think nature's doing the same thing for free?

Charles 9 Silver badge
Joke

Re: The universe is weird, we want a refund

No way! The gravity was so intense it distorted space-time to the point only six months passed where I was. Imagine the wrangling such a counterpoint would cause...

GSMA report: Sorry, handset makers, 5G is not going to save the smartphone market

Charles 9 Silver badge

Re: Keep the shiny-shiny....

Nothing at all. They're following the money, and people are paying top dollar for the latest and greatest every year. As far as they're concerned, we're not worth the time in comparison. As Badfinger once sang, "Will you walk away from a fool and his money...sonny?"

Galaxy S20 security is already old hat as Samsung launches new safety silicon

Charles 9 Silver badge

IS it? Why not provide some Turing-style proof of this so we can just declare that mobile security is an oxymoron?

Bionic eyes to be a thing in the next decade? Possibly. Boffins mark sensor-density breakthrough

Charles 9 Silver badge

They're talking about implants that stimulate the cochlea (auditory nerve). Hearing aids, for example, are useless if your ear canals are totally shut or if the problem is the nerve itself. Implants provide a potential solution even in those conditions.

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