* Posts by David 45

613 publicly visible posts • joined 10 Jun 2009


Microsoft will upgrade Windows 10 21H2 users whether they like it or not

David 45

Updates? Pah!

All three of my Widows 10 machines have not any updates for an awfully long time, ever since "they" managed to do something nasty to my graphics, seemingly substituting some sort of generic driver that only gave me a limited choice of resolutions, none matching the native resolution of the monitors. I eventually managed to roll back but I was not best pleased. As I have the "pro" version, I've used the Group Policy Editor to stymie updates but will MS be able to by-pass this? Update service is also disabled.

Epson says ink pad saturation behind 'end of service life' warning on inkjet printers

David 45

Wash away your sins.

After finding out what the mystery ambiguous message actually meant (naughty Epson for not being straight about it), I just dismantled the printer, thoroughly washed the pad (a bit messy but worth it), used a free third-party re-setter (might have been: https://ssclg.com/epsone.shtml but that's a bit old now), re-installed the pad and away I went again. Easy peasy.

Taylor drift: Finally, a use for AI emerges? Cyber-smut star films fsck-flick in Tesla with Autopilot, warns: 'I wouldn't recommend it'

David 45

Re: Peeks or perks?

This video has been removed for violating YouTube's Terms of Service.

Samsung is planning to reverse-engineer the human brain on to a chip

David 45

Who's brain?

Let's hope they don't try and reverse Trump's brain - they would have difficulty in finding it in the first place!

International Space Station stabilizes after just-docked Russian module suddenly fires thrusters

David 45

Made from old baked bean cans.

Probably built it in re-purposed old Moskvitch and Lada factories, which could explain everything!

NASA fixes Hubble Space Telescope using backup power supply unit, payload computer

David 45

Re: Sounds vaguely familiar.. LOL

A shoe? Only one? Is this singular? Are you regrettably devoid of a limb? To wit, one leg, Mr. Spigot? For those who don't know the joke, Peter Cooke and Dudley Moore. Audition for the part of Tarzan.

MPs slam UK's £22bn Test and Trace programme for failing to provide evidence that it slows COVID pandemic

David 45

What? !!!

'Ow much? Blimey, just how can that flawed scheme have cost THAT much? Thought it had all gone a bit quite on that front.

Spotify to introduce lossless audio streaming: Better sound or inefficient gimmick?

David 45

Compressed to within an inch of its life

Little point in offering high bit-rate audio on the internet as, these days, there is an incredible amount of compression, processing and butchering applied at source. Can't recreate what's been taken away. Most CD's and radio (both FM and DAB) sound absolutely foul, as there is very little in the way of proper dynamics left after being pumped through such monstrosities such as "Optimod" and the like. It's only too obvious when fed into an audio editor like Audacity. It almost flatlines! Not a scrap of life left in the music, any semblance of a decent dynamic range having been completely wrung out to dry. Fit only for background music! Every production is now trying to sound louder than anybody else's, with the result that EVERYTHING now sounds awful. Decent sound quality now seems to be a thing of the past.

Voyager 2 receives and executes first command in 11 months as sole antenna that reaches it returns to work

David 45

Re: It's a different world

And domestic jet-packs!

Trump issues toothless exec order to show donors, fans he's doing something about those Twitter twerps

David 45

Re: Worst American president ever

Nah.....the BESTEST ever! I jest, of course.

US threatens to turf out four Chinese telcos amid concerns over national security... and COVID-19, doctors, schools, jobs, communists, etc

David 45

Something for the election, sir?

More Trump-fueled paranoia, no doubt.

Infosys fires employee who Facebooked 'let's hold hands and share coronavirus'

David 45

Misfiring joke?

Sounds like some sort of "witticism" that went awry. Not the sort of comment or "joke" that should be made in these troubled times. Tasteless, if that was the intention, bearing in mind the virus can be fatal. Not totally sure it warranted an out-and-out firing though. Some sort of admonishment or downgrading maybe.

Take it Huawei, Pai: Senate passes bill to rip 'dodgy' kit from rural telcos

David 45

Paranoia - again!

What a bloody waste of money, just to fund Trump's paranoia.

Aw, look. The UK is still trying really hard to be the 'safest place to be online in the world'

David 45

Laughable scheme

I can see this being a bit of a joke. How do they "regulate" social media that's not based in this country, not to mention millions of websites? They don't do a lot about anything, anyway, other than slap TV stations' wrists every now and again for inappropriate content after the watershed - or something like that!

You know the President is able to shut down all US comms, yeah? An FCC commish wants to stop him from doing that

David 45


For goodness' sake - don't go putting even MORE crackpot ideas into that brainless orange head!

Pair charged with murder, manslaughter after IBM Aspera boffin killed in New Year's Eve laptop theft struggle

David 45

Re: A warning for us all.

"Two wrongs don't make a right, as the saying goes." Maybe not but if the perpetrator comes off considerably worse after a not-so-gentle take-down and detainment than it's more than satisfying.

Uber forks out $4.4m to settle claims of rampant sexual harassment and retaliation in the Travis Kalanick era

David 45

Sticky stuff

Mud still sticks to the company.

Halfords invents radio signals that don't travel at the speed of light

David 45

Rubbish sound nowadays

DAB was in a VW car I borrowed whilst mine was being serviced recently. Bearing in mind that I hardly ever listen to the dross most radio stations put out these days, when I tried it, out of interest, it seemed to work well enough for car quality but also bear in mind that Bluebell Hill transmitter (puts out local TV as well - why they didn't use Wrotham is probably another story) is only just up the road from me, so nice strong signal. They all "burble" if the signal drops. Haven't got my early Technics DAB tuner up and running indoors after a house move, simply for the aforementioned dross reason and the fact that (I've probably mentioned this elsewhere - many times) when I first had it, there was no doubt it was superior. Noise floor so low, it was practically non-existent, decent dynamic range, etc; because, presumably, a half-decent bit-rate was used but, as time wore on, withe more and more stations shoe-horned in with ever-decreasing bit-rates, PLUS the dreaded Optimod processing seemingly being screwed up several notches, sound quality now is absolute rubbish. Might just as well be FM, for all the butchering that goes on before it actually hits the ether. (Younger readers please look it up!)

Welcome to the World Of Tomorrow, where fridges suffer certificate errors. Just like everything else

David 45


Just two words.....bloody ridiculous!

Here we go again: US govt tells Facebook to kill end-to-end encryption for the sake of the children

David 45

Idiot politicians

I would hope that all the companies approached would tell the joint signatories to poke the letter where the sun doesn't shine. I am getting sick and tired of hearing about "lawful access" (especially from that twit, Barr!) to get past encryption - as if there's a way of doing this without the bad guys also getting in, as they will, sure as the sun rises every day! Betcha they are rubbing their collective sticky little hands together as I speak. What a glorious prospect to get hold of bank details, personal information and goodness' knows what else. I despair.

Margin mugs: A bank paid how much for a 2m Ethernet cable? WTF!

David 45

Re: Not just business

More like b*llsh*t! :-)

Au my bog: Bloke, 66, on bail after 'solid-gold' crapper called 'America' stolen from stately home

David 45

Nothing to go on, indeed!

Perhaps it should have been in the cistern chapel or maybe the Louvre.

Are you who you say you are, sir? You are? That's all fine then

David 45


I needed a rare appointment with my doctor (and still do) for mystery leg and knee pains. Went to patient access website for appointment - says my practice is unavailable. Great. Phoned and was put on hold for 20 minutes, with foul music. Hung up. Tried again later: "We are experiencing a very high call rate at the moment", said robot. "We know you are waiting and you will be answered shortly". That "shortly" turned out to be 25 minutes. "Oh. we're not getting many appointments from the website these days", said the live female human receptionist. Hmm. Pointed out that it might be something to do with it coming up as "practice unavailable". "So how do I get an appointment at present?". "If you want one the same day, you have to ring at 0800 and we have appointments we can release". Once again, I pointed out that if I rang at 0800, and had to wait on hold for someone to answer for the best part of twenty five minutes, then that would probably negate the theory and I guess any same-day appointments would be all gone. "Well, we ARE rather short-staffed", was the excuse. Doh! It's almost as it the whole thing is actually engineered to keep those pesky patients away, as they're really a bit of a nuisance to the smooth running of the practice.

Full of beans? Sadly not as fellow cracks open tin at dinner to find just one

David 45


I once had a completely meatless meat pie made by Birdseye. Just pastry - nothing else! Reckon that also qualifies for headline news! :-)

Chinese government has got it 'spot on' when it comes to face-recog tech says, er, London's Met cops' top rep

David 45


Who does Ken Marsh think he's kidding? I would NOT be happy about being stopped myself. What if I was a businessman rushing for an appointment and their faulty tech. made me late? Or someone who had been taken ill, on the way to a doctor? How's about that, yer' honour? And just how long would it take to ascertain that I was just a totally innocent passer-by with maybe some vague resemblance to a known villain? What procedure will police use to clear people in the shortest possible time? I can see some suing taking place here for wrongful arrests. It's dangerous technology. This needs more thinking, methinks.........and THEN ban it, forthwith!

US minister invokes Maggie Thatcher, says she would have halted Huawei 5G rollout

David 45

Condescending, arrogant and patronising

Is what she was. I always wanted to throw something at the TV screen when she appeared. Strangely enough, Trump has the same effect, She had a thing about nationalised industries. Post Office Telephones (as was, and who I used to work for as an engineer) was actually originally a government department and was running quite happily until Maggie got her sticky hands on it, got it changed to British Telecom, sold it off to all and sundry and it went down the pan from thereon in. Likewise other industries. Gas comes to mind. She was a disaster.

US firm wins Oz-backed bid to block Huawei from subsea Pacific cables

David 45


Does rather smack of paranoia, even if their practices aren't so good as might be desired. That, presumably could be changed.

SEC says no to Amazon bid to stop shareholders voting on use of facial recognition system

David 45


Possibly! It's a start, I suppose, if yet another invention of the devil can be stopped at source. There are a more than a few rumblings in the UK about the London Metropolitan Police "trialling" facial recognition and, presumably sweeping up perfectly innocent people in their database, despite denials. (If you're doing nothing wrong.........etc). Don't know who supplies THEIR kit. Be interesting to find out. Wonder if a FOI request would work?

Let's spin Facebook's Wheel of Misfortune! Clack-clack-clack... clack... You've won '100s of millions of passwords stored in plaintext'

David 45

Naughty is not the right word.

Sounds just as ethical as Uber.

Let's face it. We need to face up to facing off with face-recog tech, say US senators: Bipartisan AI privacy law proposed

David 45

UK similar

I sent a standard mail to our UK police authorities, protesting about the facial recognition trials in the UK and got this boiler-plate back:


Thank you for your e-mail to the Commissioner’s Private Office.

A total of ten deployments have been carried out across London as part of the Met's trial of Live Facial Recognition technology.

During each deployment, the technology was used overtly with a clear uniformed presence. Information leaflets were distributed to the public and posters with information about the technology were displayed in the area.

Throughout the ten deployments, a total of eight arrests were made as a direct result of the flagging system.

While those who declined to be scanned were not necessarily viewed as suspicious, officers used their judgement to identify any potential suspicious behaviour.

The Met continues to engage with many different stakeholders, some of who actively challenge our use of this technology. In order to show transparency and continue constructive debate, individuals and groups with varying views were invited to each deployment.

The technology tested during the trial is developing all the time and has the potential to be invaluable to day-to-day policing. Tackling violent crime is a key priority for the Met and we are determined to use all emerging technology available to support standard policing activity and help protect our communities.

A full independent evaluation of the deployments and the technology itself is ongoing and expected to conclude in April. We will use the findings to help inform how the Met uses the technology in the future and will publish the findings at the earliest possibility.

We believe facial recognition can be an extremely valuable tool to keep London and its citizens safe, alongside other tactical methods we deploy. The public will rightly expect our use of this technology to be rigorously scrutinised and used lawfully. During the Met’s trial phase we have made use of existing legislation however there is currently no specific legal framework in the use of this technology and we are therefore keen to ensure that the appropriate legal and ethical frameworks are put in place to support its use.

Existing legislation which supports the Met’s use of facial recognition technology, has been published on the force’s website. This provides information about why the Met is trialling the technology, where and when it has been used and how we will engage with Londoners during the deployments. More information can be found here: https://www.met.police.uk/live-facial-recognition-trial/

Facebook blames 'server config change' for 14-hour outage. Someone run that through the universal liar translator

David 45


Fixed? Pity it wasn't permanently down. Invention of the devil.

Ding dong merrily on high. In Berkeley, the bots are singeing: Self-driving college cooler droid goes up in flames

David 45

R2-D2 it is not!

I expect it was making fresh toast en route but perhaps a tad over-done now!

Here's 2018 in a nutshell for you... Russian super robot turns out to be man in robot suit

David 45

Action Man

Wasn't Putin in there, was it? Make a change if someone else pulled HIS strings!

Ecuador says 'yes' to Assange 'freedom' deal, but Julian says 'nyet'

David 45

Re: move on down the road a piece

Mine used to give me subtle hints about how it was high time to leave home and find my own place - like wrapping my sandwiches in a road map! :-)

Chinese biz baron wants to shove his artificial moon where the sun doesn't shine – literally

David 45


Gotta have some illumination to cook sweet-and-sour!

Huawei Mate 20 series: China's best phone, but a pricey proposition

David 45

Non-optional extras

No built-in malware, then?

London's Gatwick Airport flies back to the future as screens fail

David 45

Re: "no redundancy in the internet link"

Potential of a smart phone? No earthly good if the information is not there to start with. I was there today, dropping off passengers, then attempting to pick up others. Website arrivals flight information was sketchy, with some flights missing or no information against the flight numbers (so no use for one's shiny smart phone there!). Gatwick's auto. phone information system just went dead the second I entered the flight number (so no use for one's shiny smart phone there!). I had no idea of the status of my incoming passengers' flight and felt that Gatwick's main number would probably be inundated, so I didn't bother trying that (so no use for one's shiny smart phone there!). Arrivals concourse info. screens were also all over the place, with my flight number also not showing on there at all. My passengers also said that the baggage reclaim section was also not working. The main complaint I have is that there was no information whatsoever in arrivals that there was a problem - not even any public address announcements and certainly no whiteboards. There were lots of baffled-looking folk with furrowed brows looking at useless screens, obviously wondering what the devil was going on. In fact, as far as I could see, the only information that something was amiss was a rider on the flight information website saying that information screens were not working properly. A bit more communication (in more ways than one!) wouldn't have gone far amiss.

Australia on the cusp of showing the world how to break encryption

David 45


Looks like down under are on the Trump pig-ignorance band-wagon! When will they listen to people who actually know what they're talking about? Madness.

Have YOU had your breakfast pint? Boffins confirm cheeky daily tipple is good for you

David 45

A time and a place....................

Think I draw the line at Stella Artois for breakfast! Might be interesting on cornflakes instead of milk, I suppose

Trump’s new ZTE tweet trumps old ZTE tweets that trumped his first ZTE tweet

David 45

A Trump back-pedal with strings!

Why should they be subject to a fine? Have they done something wrong, proven and sentenced in a court of law?

President Trump broke US Constitution with Twitter bans – judge

David 45

Off with his head!

Will he care? Will he ****!

The future of radio may well be digital, but it won't survive on DAB

David 45

A con trick

DAB was the most appalling bit of skull-duggery foisted onto the unsuspecting British public in many a year. CD quality? Just who are they kidding? I was an early adopter with a Technics tuner and it all sounded fine initially, but quality has slowly gone down the pan, mainly due, I presume, to the ever-decreasing bit-rates, not to mention the ever-present audio butchering caused by compression and/or processing. Sounds like the dreaded Optimod is still in there somewhere. I'm pretty sure I read somewhere in the mists of time that the original DAB spec. might have included user-adjustable compression. Anyone else got that in the memory banks? If so, it never happened - obviously. ANYTHING might be better than the absolutely appalling sound quality from FM these days. I hardly ever listen to radio, as I find it pretty painful on the ears. Even internet and satellite radio seem to use excessive amounts of compression. All the stations are desperately trying to sound more punchier than the others, with the result that they ALL sound as grotty as hell. Flat as the proverbial pancake. No dynamics - flat-lining. Why the Radio Authority (as was) ever allowed this to happen is beyond me. I have reel-to-reel recordings off FM from many years ago (bearing in mind the upper audio limit is about 15 khz. and they sound brilliant. Today's transmissions are a travesty.

Here's the list of Chinese kit facing extra US import tariffs: Hard disk drives, optic fiber, PCB making equipment, etc

David 45

Re: Nationalism Trumps Consumer Choice, apparently

No, no......TRUMP should be banned from politics! He's only playing at it. He was never a politician and sure as hell he's not even learning to be one now!

Brit Lords start peer-to-peer wrangling over regulating the internet

David 45


First things first. They (and I include the right honourable House Of Commons members also, here) should all be compelled to take a course that explains how the internet works. Then (and only then) they might just (and only just) be slightly qualified to discuss it

Fatal driverless crash: Radar-maker says Uber disabled safety systems

David 45

Uber software?

Since when have Uber been programmers?

Uber breaks self-driving car record: First robo-ride to kill a pedestrian

David 45

Clever car?

Self-driving cars seem to be being touted as the be-all and end-all for the future. In which case, surely the beast should have had enough electronic know-how to realise what was happening and either brake or avoid? Isn't this the very thing that is supposed to be their salient feature? Safer than a human driver I have seen quoted. Doesn't appear to be so in this case. I reckon they have many years to go before they can be trusted (if at all) and, speaking personally, I don't think I would EVER feel at ease in one.

Age checks for UK pr0n site visitors on ice as regulator cobbles together some guidance

David 45


Blowed if I would give any age verification to some anonymous purveyor of smut! Having said that, this UK government seems intent on having as much control over the internet as the mad Chinese, with their daft encryption back-door ideas (pinched from the Yanks, I'll be bound) and the nanny attitude to this sort of material in this day and age is appalling. Good parenting is the answer to keep children away from it and I thoroughly resent being told what I can and cannot watch in the privacy of my own home, especially if it does not affect anybody else. The sooner the lovely Theresa, Amber, et al, realise that they are elected to serve the people and are NOT there for their own agendas, the better.

Crunch time: Maplin in talks to sell the business

David 45

Staff not enthusiastic

Went into my local branch for an SD card for my dashcam and the guy I spoke to quietly suggested that if I'm not desperate, go to Amazon and even pulled up the relevant item on his own phone on Amazon's site!

Uh-oh! Someone hit the Kalanick button! Uber's fired CEO claims Waymo deal vindicates him

David 45


Sounds like he's had a session at the Trump school of how to make friends, gaining confidence and influencing people! Don't think I've even heard your learned president waffle so much!

We are 'heroes,' says police chief whose force frisked a photographer

David 45


There's always one isn't there? I have to say that smacks a little troll-ish. The man was just standing up for his rights. If it is not illegal to photograph in a public place, why should he be required to identify himself - especially as the original inquisitor (it appears) was not actually a police officer? I thought this harassing photographers under false pretences malarkey had died a death with better education in the force. I well remember a case from a few years back near me where someone was also arrested in Chatham under the pretence of the anti-terrorism act for taking innocuous pictures of shops and some demolition work. The original jobs-worth who wanted ID (which was refused - and quite rightly so) was, I believe, not a police officer but a jumped-up council official with no ID himself, who then called the police. The photographer was eventually "de-arrested" but not after having been thrown into the back of a police van. I myself had some aggravation from some army types, milling around a road accident that I was photographing. I was told in no uncertain terms (in front of witnesses) that if I had included any of them in the pictures, they would confiscate both camera and film. I stood my ground and stated the law, also inferring that I would sue the pants off them if they tried it, and the person concerned backed off. Unenlightened security guards are also quite often belligerent with a lack of knowledge of the law and there are numerous stories about them trying to stop photography in a public place with a heavy hand.