* Posts by Jonathan Richards 1

1228 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

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Linus Torvalds admits to 'self-inflicted damage' with -Werror as Linux 5.15 rc1 debuts

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Joke

Hangover from the past

But.. but... I, J, K, L, M, or N as variable names are implicitly integer data types, and if I use long names, I run out of space on my 80-column cards...

Only 'natural persons' can be recognized as patent inventors, not AI systems, US judge rules

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Judge is right

@Neil Barnes

> ...actual person?

That's the exact meaning of "natural person", a term used to differentiate them from "artificial persons". The Legal Information Institute says

Artificial Person

An entity established by law and given at least some legal rights and duties of a human being. Corporations are the most common types of artificial persons.

By that definition, AI systems (not being established by law) are not any sort of person, which seems to me to accord with common sense.

Leaked Guntrader firearms data file shared. Worst case scenario? Criminals plot UK gun owners' home addresses in Google Earth

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: On the other hand...

> you get kicked out of the field

... yes, and probably *by* the farm animal that you tried to suckle from.

British naval food doesn't look half bad... so we're going to try it out for ourselves

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

re. Which war?

My question exactly. I have to distrust Kev's opinions when (s)he uses the definite article in front of "War".

SCO v. IBM settlement deal is done, but zombie case shuffles on elsewhere

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: The case that never was

> a cesspool of right-wing lunacy

Say, has anybody ever seen BIFF and DJT in the same room at the same time?

Judge dismisses objections to spaceport in Scotland from billionaire who also wants to build spaceport in Scotland

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Boffin

Vertical orbit??

All orbits are horizontal, in the sense that they're heading towards (and over!) the horizon. The only way a polar orbit is "vertical" is from the point of view of someone looking at an Earth map with a north-up convention (although south-up would also work, but you don't see many of them).

Magna Carta mayhem: Protesters lay siege to Edinburgh Castle, citing obscure Latin text that has never applied in Scotland

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Sumption is wrong

> it's proper reference

*its

Muphry strikes again!

COVID-19 cases surge as do sales of fake vaccination cards – around $100 for something you could get free

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Forgery

Just to clarify: the doctor in question submitted forged Covid PCR test results at the airport, not vaccination certificates. Same offence, different documents. I am not an immigration lawyer, but should she apply to remain in the UK at some point, I believe the criminal record will count against being successful. In fact, a criminal conviction (beyond reasonable doubt) is not even necessary: the HO only sets itself a balance of probability standard:

A person will not normally be considered to be of good character if there is information to suggest that any of the following apply:

Criminality

If they have not respected or are not prepared to abide by the law - for example, they have been convicted of a crime or there are reasonable grounds to suspect, meaning it is more likely than not, they have been involved in crime.

Source: Nationality: good character requirement [pdf]

Activist raided by police after downloading London property firm's 'confidential' meeting minutes from Google Search

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Alert

Re: Really?

Maybe someone thought that robots.txt would be the answer to keeping the pages away from Google? I have to say that I thought so, right up until I read:

A robots.txt file tells search engine crawlers which URLs the crawler can access on your site. This is used mainly to avoid overloading your site with requests; it is not a mechanism for keeping a web page out of Google. To keep a web page out of Google, block indexing with noindex or password-protect the page.

Source: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/advanced/robots/intro

Hey, AI software developers, you are taking Unicode into account, right ... right?

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Happy

Nothing new under the sun

Good heavens! It's like these people never saw posters writing control codes into their Usenet contributions. Click up arrow now^W^W^W^W

Ad tech ruined the web – and PDF files are here to save it, allegedly

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: The Register print version next!

Yep, I see the Joke Alert. The Print page isn't plain HTML, though:

jonathan@Odin:~$ curl -s https://www.theregister.com/Print/2021/07/20/pdf_html_debate/ | grep -A 1 "<script"

<script>

var RegArticle={id:216169,pf:0,af:0,bms:0,cat:'news',ec:['adobe'],kw:[["software",'Software'],["web",'Web'],["development",'Development']],short_url:'https://reg.cx/40A4',cp:0,noads:[],author:'Thomas Claburn'}

--

<script>var RegTruePageType = 'www print';</script>

<link rel="canonical" href="https://www.theregister.com/2021/07/20/pdf_html_debate/"><link rel=stylesheet href="https://fonts.googleapis.com/css?family=Arimo:400,700&amp;display=swap">

--

<script>

var RegCR = true;

--

<script src="/design_picker/4c219a18bc536a8aa7db9b0c3186de409fcd74a7/javascript/_.js"></script>

<script async onerror="gpt_js_errored()" src="//securepubads.g.doubleclick.net/tag/js/gpt.js"></script>

<script>

RegGPT('reg_software/front');

--

<script async src="https://www.googletagmanager.com/gtag/js"></script>

--

<script>

(function(i,s,o,g,r,a,m){i['GoogleAnalyticsObject']=r;i[r]=i[r]||function(){

This page has been deliberately left blank

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: He's lucky it was just some t-shirts...

*matelot

French word, meaning matelot.

Former IT manager from Essex pleads guilty to defrauding the NHS of £800k

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Joke

Re: Tears before bedtime

No, me neither, whichever end up.

Apple sued in nightmare case involving teen wrongly accused of shoplifting, driver's permit used by impostor, and unreliable facial-rec tech

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Stop

Re: Justice

Is this really a thing now? "I'm not responsible for my repeated and widespread shoplifting, my brain made me do it?"

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: It is not Apple or SIS who lied ...

What are Apple and SIS if not aggregated employees? Nothing is done except by employees of these firms; firms cannot lie, only their employees. IANAL but I firmly believe this is an ancient principle of the law: masters are responsible for the actions of the servants in their employ. Minimal research leads me to the insight that there is a distinction between employer::employee and principal::agent relationships, but today I am avoiding rabbit-holes.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Joke

Re: Apple and SIS have a qualified law enforcement privilege that allows them to err in store

> to protect wittiness and investigations

Oh, well, I'm all for the protection of wittiness, really. The more folk pitching in on that, the better.

Seeking an escape from the UK? Regulations aimed at rocket and satellite launches from 2022 have arrived

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Unhappy

LOHAN?

It's been a long time; I guess nobody has the drive that Lester had to get the damn thing in the air.

Who gave dusty Soviet-era spacecraft that unwanted lick of paint? It was an idiot, with a spraycan, in Baikonur

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Alien

Man, this spaceship is *late*...

> The decaying spacecraft have been documented over the years by trespassers venturing inside the structures.

Just waiting for a consignment of lemon-soaked paper napkins.

Man found dead inside model dinosaur after climbing in to retrieve phone

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Alternative explanation

> what else was the suggestion of drunkenness supposed to convey?

To me it conveyed the hypothesis of someone whose judgement was impaired by alcohol. I certainly did not parse it to mean that anyone deserved to die, and I find it odd that you did, tbh.

Facebook Giphy merger stays on ice after failed challenge to UK competition regulator

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: prognostications

...and look, you did!

US declares emergency after ransomware shuts oil pipeline that pumps 100 million gallons a day

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Airgap need not reduce functionality

Exactly. Data Diode

Terminal trickery, or how to improve a novel immeasurably

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Go

Re: I'm a word wrangler...

Yes, it should. Word Wrangler has a way with words, and with creative orthography. I will imagine that 'phiction' is intentional, but I think that WW should have noticed that El Reg gives the wiggly red underline of disapproval, quite understandably, to poeticly, discertations, consenent, dissiduous, anonimously, occaisonal, caravansari and acception. Perhaps this is partly why submissions to an editor come back with plenty of red ink!

See icon -->

Texan's alleged Amazon bombing effort fizzles: Militia man wanted to take out 'about 70 per cent of the internet'

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Christian Militia Terrorist

I think there are useful distinctions between terrorism, guerilla warfare, and declared state-on-state warfare simply in terms of discussing the history. Popes declared Crusades, and individual states signed up to join in. Their armies foraging and marauding their way to the Holy Land may or may not be regarded in modern terms as terrorists, cf Constantinople 1204.

If the terminology was used more judiciously, then the "War on Terror" would almost be a contradiction in terms.

Prince Philip, inadvertent father of the Computer Misuse Act, dies aged 99

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: forthright with outspoken opinions

> You did not elect the Queen

I did not, and personally I would rather have a monarch raised for the purpose as head-of-state-for-life, than some ambitious demagogue with a short-term approach to getting elected again (or failing that capturing the state for their own ends).

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Things are never quite that simple

Interestingly [1], the Ministry of Defence makes an annual return to Parliament with a count of the number of persons under arms in the UK Armed Forces. Just to make sure that the Army etc. isn't being built up to be too big. As if...

[1] for certain values of 'Interesting'

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: forthright with outspoken opinions

> This is supposed to be a democracy

Who told you that? We have parliamentary representation in a constitutional monarchy. The last exercise in actual democracy was a referendum on continued membership of the European Union.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Headmaster

Bad greek

> the hoi polloi

'hoi' is already the definite article.

What's this about a muon experiment potentially upending Standard Model of physics? We speak to one of the scientists involved

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Why not...

Because they'll post their response on the wrong story?

Airline software super-bug: Flight loads miscalculated because women using 'Miss' were treated as children

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Weighbridge

Incorporate a weighbridge into the airbridge (or flight steps, if that is in use). I have seen people carry hand luggage onto a plane which weighs considerably more than a small child does (judging by the effort needed, often by more than one person, to get it into the overhead locker).

FTAOD: that's the carry-on case they're man-handling into the locker, not the small child...

For blinkenlights sake.... RTFM! Yes. Read The Front of the Machine

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
FAIL

Re: The Agony and No Ecstasy

Must have been about 1983 or '4. Working on a Citroen 2CV on the drive, and it gently tumbled off the jack - no drama, nobody underneath, no problem. Something in my weakened brain (yes, even then...) told me that I could put my hands under the sill and lift something that looks so much like a tin can as easily as, well, a tin can. It turns out that one cannot do that. Agony is a tough word, but I hope that is what I experienced, as I don't want to believe that there is anything too much worse.

Yahoo! Answers! will! be! wiped! from! the! internet! next! month!

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Yahoo! still exists?

> first email account, ... in 1995

Heh, I was clearing up some old papers the other day and came across the dot-matrix printout from my BIX registration. It finishes with

Off at Tue Sep 22 05:20:59 1987

...

DROPPED BY HOST

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Byte_Information_Exchange

IBM, Red Hat face copyright, antitrust lawsuit from SCO Group successor Xinuos

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Stop

Re: Ah shit ...

Here we go again, again. SCO v IBM is not and never has been about patents.

City of London Police warn against using ‘open science’ site Sci-Hub

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: Just go to your local library

£50 a pop, and that for an electronic copy. I'm sorry to hear that, because when I was more closely involved with library services, admittedly a long time ago, it was much more affordable to get a photocopy of a printed journal article from the BL. One had to apply using a preprinted form, which BL sold to participating libraries in boxes of 25 or 50, IIRC, and sometimes the library didn't even pass on the charge. I suppose it's fair to say that UK public library funding has been cut to and through the bone since those days.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Go

Re: Just go to your local library

No, Dave, clearly you wouldn't expect your town library to have a copy of every journal in the world, but the British Library does. Have a copy, I mean, not the expectation.

The BL acquisition policy for their journal collection is to subscribe to every periodical publication worldwide, with very few exceptions.

The BL also operates an Inter-Library Loans scheme, and most UK municipal libraries do participate, although they may charge you for expenses.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Joke

Re: "data and research ... is ... more strategically valuable ... than copyright-busting"

Quoth the Doctor: "In its area it was the main journal in its area."

That's like the town near where I grew up, known to all as the centre of five miles round.

Thousands of taxpayers' personal details potentially exposed online through councils' debt-chasing texts

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

I am mildly encouraged...

...by the observation that "[T]he majority of links sent [were] not being accessed at all". This tells me that (i) most people dunned by SMS are already well aware that their Council Tax is in arrears, thank you, and (ii) that just maybe people are learning that clicking on the link in response to strident instruction is dangerous.

Ministry of Defence tells contractors not to answer certain UK census questions over security fears

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Happy

Re: Census data

> Like Noel

Only this week, I was alerted to a scammer calling himself Kwame Nkrumah. I'm old enough to remember the famous one, so I looked up the name, to find that Kwame is a name for people born on a Saturday. Kwame Nkrumah is a Saturday-born ninth child. TIL...

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: I wonder if they're hiring delivery drivers for the sorting office that serves CHR32?

Similarly STHL 1ZZ. Do all these far-flung places have 1ZZ for the inward code?

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Census data

> oddities in the census data

My favourite was one I found when browsing the returns for a parish in Cornwall for the 1861 census, taken on the 7th of April. At first I thought I had found an early instance of civil disobedience, because the form clearly had the words "Census Crapp" on it. Closer inspection, though, showed that the entry was the last one for the family of John and Emma Crapp: "Tom Census Crapp; Son; Born this day; Cornwall, Ladock". So Tom Crapp was never going to forget that he was born on Census Day!

Move aside, Technoking: All hail the Sweat Master and his many inspirational job titles

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Sweat

"lying in carbonated form"

Fib and tonic, innit.

'No' does not mean 'yes'... unless you are a scriptwriter for software user interfaces

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Go

Re: can't or ca'n't

I think the abbreviated fo'c'sle is an attempt to have the orthography match a long-standing pronunciation, not the other way around. Consider the word "waistcoat" which was pronounced "weskit" for hundreds of years, until reading became widespread. Also "forehead". It's properly pronounced forrid, otherwise the rhyme of the little girl with the curl right in the middle of her forehead simply does not work. Unless the last line is "when she was bad, she was whore-head". That ca'n't be right, can it.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Well - spare?

I know I'm going to regret this... the correct line of descent is from first machine to earliest spun-up secondary instance, and only going back up the tree if necessary. So the machines would currently be Elizabeth, Charles, William, George, Charlotte, Louis, in that order, and only then Harry.

You only need pen and paper to fool this OpenAI computer vision code. Just write down what you want it to see

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: A rather large piece of paper for a fair test

It's time to look again at the clacks overhead, and remember Mount Yerfingeryefool.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Joke

Re: Perfect crime

The form of words for UK classified documents is "This page is intentionally blank", with the same result of silicon paradox paralysis for any overly-literal AI reading it! The reason originally, of course, is that it caught errors with photocopying - if there was a truly blank page you knew there was something wrong. Photocopiers should have been set up to print "This page is unintentionally blank" on mis-feeds, I suppose.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Go

Terminator defence

m00Ɩ b- ʇʇoʞɔɒd obυƨ

Linus Torvalds issues early Linux Kernel update to fix swapfile SNAFU

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

Re: Linus is maybe a tad incorrect?

Depends what you mean by incorrect :) I don't believe that you would ever install an .rc1 on even the lowliest footsoldier of your server army, am I right?

Hacking is not a crime – and the media should stop using 'hacker' as a pejorative

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge

was Re: My current annoyance is "gift" as a verb

> school nmemonics

Pity they didn't work harder on the Greek. Mnemonic, pertaining to Mnemosyne, Greek goddess of memory.

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Meh

Re: Too late

Indeed, people tell me all the time to get over it, because language is a living thing. Thus, I speak of Donald Trump's fabulous and incredible win in the 2020 US Presidential election, and I get down-voted by progressive liberals with no background in etymology.

Valheim: How the heck has more 'indie shovelware with PS2 graphics' sold 4 million copies in a matter of weeks?

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Thumb Up

Graphics don't matter

Just so. After all, nobody looked at Doom or Elite and said "I think I'll stick to chess until the graphics are better".

'Meritless': Exam software maker under fire for suing teacher who tweeted links to biz's unlisted YouTube vids

Jonathan Richards 1 Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: America is never shy

Rather "You can always count on Americans to do the right thing..."

You wouldn't ordinarily catch Churchill voluntarily splitting an infinitive. :Pedantic anti-Nazi: ==>

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