* Posts by Marketing Hack

4886 posts • joined 18 Jun 2009

IBM to power down Power-powered virtual private cloud, GPU-accelerated options

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Couldn't they have waited until the streamlined POWER offerings supported Linux?

It's not like Linux has a tiny share of the enterprise-level operating system market. Is it IBM's intent to incent their current POWER customers to look at competitors that can currently support Linux, and avoid the last minute will-they-or-won't-they IBM Linux support concerns and rushed migrations?

As the US maybe gets serious about coronavirus-tracking apps, Congress wakes up to the privacy risks

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Black Helicopters

Just one three-letter agency? You aren't using your imagination.

They've only gone and bloody done it! NASA, SpaceX send two fellas off to the International Space Station

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Black Helicopters

Re: Perfect

They had to edit out the part where Nessie surfaced surfaced alongside the barge and tried to mate with the booster. It took a few minutes for the sharks with frikkin' lasers to drive her away.

Gone in 9 seconds: Virgin Orbit's maiden rocket flight went perfectly until it didn't

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Re: Oh. Again?

I doubt you will ever see one of these rockets being prepped on the tarmac at Heathrow or any other major passenger airport. Liquid rocket fuel is often pretty nasty stuff, so you would have all kinds of environmental concerns. Plus most all of your major international airports are near or even have takeoff corridors happening over heavily populated neighborhoods.

Nobody wants to be the major airport that has something happen and the rocket ends up piling into some residential subdivision.

There are a number of less-constricted fields with long runways, including a number of recently retired military airbases. If I recall correctly, Virgin Orbit has an arrangement to fly out of Anderson AFB in Guam. Anderson has runways used for B-52 strikes during the Vietnam War. Plus Virgin Orbit needs to be pretty near the ocean, since they don't want to launch over land, especially somewhat populated land. So even Heathrow would probably be too far from the Atlantic (a couple hundred miles) to really work for Virgin.

Dude, where's my laser?

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Black Helicopters

"it did end up spending a winter at the South Pole."

Doubtless the sonar atmosphere sensing system was used to facilitate further deployment of the laser system to cut an ancient flying saucer out of the Antarctic ice. All very plausible, except that how do you keep the beam centered on the ice when the shark is shivering like that?

Doubtless there was another set of scientists there, deploying their Pentagon-funded shark mind-control implants to keep the shark focused on what the laser was doing.

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Greedo was from Alderaan!! That explains SOOOOOO much now!!

Virgin Orbit at last ready to live up to its name: Branson's other space adventure set for maiden flight this weekend

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Re: ....does not require the infrastructure needed by vertically launched rockets

Is there a problem? What is it?


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Re: These are the voyages of....

No volcano I am afraid, but I think Sir Richard's island has a flame-throwing tank disguised as a dragon.

Campaign groups warn GCHQ can re-identify UK's phones from COVID-19 contact-tracing app data

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Black Helicopters

Re: Thank you

@Version 1.0

If the government did publicly promise to delete all the data post-outbreak, the GCHQ would privately renege on that promise by grabbing copies of everything.

HPE's Black Thursday: Staff face pay cuts or the ax, office closures to save $1bn+ after coronavirus slams IT titan

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IT Angle

"products will be streamlined and rejigged to be offered as-a-service"

I'm not wholly opposed to that, but

A) Isn't this pretty "me too" at this point, after IBM and Oracle have already been at this transition for years, and MS, Google and Amazon have already grabbed huge market share since they were already service companies.

B) "As-a-service" has a definite value for a hardware company who wants predictable, contractual revenue streams instead of an amalgamation of discrete sales that can tank in situations like we have now, but how is HPE going to make this valuable for its customers?

IBM cuts deep into workforce – even its Watson and AI teams – as it 'pivots' to cloud

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Re: add high-value skills to our workforce

Well, when you are performing the way IBM has over the last several years, knowing how to give workers the chop is maybe the highest-value skill in the company!

UK's Ministry of Defence: We'll harvest and anonymise private COVID-19 apps' tracing data by handing it to 'behavioural science' arm

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Black Helicopters

"Ministry of Defence is sanitising it all first."

Thus guaranteeing that the data from these Covid-19 apps will either be poorly and inadequately sanitized, or a copy of the unsanitized, original data will immediately be sent to the GCHQ/MI5/MI6. These agencies will in turn serve as a data pitstop before that same database moves on to your local constabulary, the NSA and various other of Britain's questionably motivated domestic and international partners.

Berlin's renowned nightclub scene is showing signs of life. Just one problem: No dancing

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Paris Hilton

While I have to say that I am always in favor of pizza...

It's kind of buzzkill to turn your hip techno club into a neon-lit Pizza Hut.

(Maybe the proprietors can hire Paris to show up. I think she still does the "appearance fee to make your club look cool" thing, even if she is getting close to being mom-age for some of the patrons.)

Could it be? Really? The Year of Linux on the Desktop is almost here, and it's... Windows-shaped?

Marketing Hack Silver badge

"6. Introducing m$ Linux, subscribe and get the best OS experience ever."

If this is "the dream", then please wake me up! "M$ forks Linux in latest extend/embrace/exterminate play"

Equifax finally coughs up the money for its 2017 monster hack… to the banks for having to cancel your cards

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Ah, Register, you optimistic fools you....

I find your continued belief that the financial industry exists to get money to consumers in a time of crisis, and not the other way around, quite charming. In a hopelessly niave and idealistic sense, of course.

Beer gut-ted: As many as '70 million pints' spoiled during coronavirus pandemic must be destroyed in Britain

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Re: Milk consumption?

In the U.S., a lot of school students (I'm not sure of the actual number, but it is 10s of millions) receive free school lunches every school day, including milk and what your school cafeteria categorizes as "food". So when you close the schools, it takes all those customers off the table.

There have apparently been some efforts to continue the free lunch service when these kids are at home, but the logistics are of course now more complicated, so not as many of these free lunches are being handed out

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Re: Pubs not open till July 4th at earliest :(

I saw something about pubs rebranding themselves as garden centers (or centres in this case, I guess) and opening up, because garden centers can be open, but pubs are bad!!

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Its hitting Australia too!!


(I'd say more about this, but I am too busy crying uncontrollably.)

Mirror mirror on the wall, why will my mouse not work at all?

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Re: obvious

Nature found a way!! Jurassic Mouse!

Facebook to surround all of Africa in optical fibre and tinfoil

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Black Helicopters

Undersea fiber-optic cable? Nice cover story!!

It will last right up until the attached flux capacitor is turned on, and Africa disappears into a dimensional vortex.

You can't have it both ways: Anti-coronavirus masks may thwart our creepy face-recog cameras, London cops admit

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Re: Anti-coronavirus masks may thwart our creepy face-recog cameras, London cops admit

So when you open your mouth to get the RFID chip inserted, they can tell you "Oh no, it goes in the other end!"

(Icon is artist'ss conception of average British citizen putting their clothes back on after getting their chip inserted.)

Senator demands deep probe into spyware-for-cops after NSO Group touts hacking toolkit to American plod

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Re: Is that what they call...

But is someone going to Trump the Wydening of the investigation?

(Sorr--actually, no I'm not. I'm not sorry at all! If you can stand the painfully bad puns, you should really get out of the El Reg comments section kitchen!!)

More automation to suddenly look like a jolly good idea as businesses struggle through coronavirus crisis, say analysts

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You do understand that even in your totally automated world, where machines run and repair themselves and produce other machines for use in the economy, that all those machines will still cost a ton of money to produce and put in place, and that spare parts and code updates and updated automation components will not be free? Further, the products they produce will still need to be distributed, which will cost money.

All this means that even fully-automated corporations will be making capital investments to facilitate all this. And they will want a return on that capital. And that means that, yes, goods and services produced in your automated utopia will still have to be paid for, so people will still need a way of making money if they want to have a reasonable living standard.

Driveway karaoke singer who wanted to lift lockdown spirits cops council noise complaint

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Re: Damn!

Perhaps a version of the Ring Cycle that is a little more relatable to modern audiences?


We maintained or increased IT spending, say seven-in-ten pros, execs polled mid-crisis. PS: We love Microsoft most

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Re: Got my popcorn . . .

But that doesn't mean we will show mercy to Microslop! Kick it when it's down, then kill it with fire! :)

Users of Will.i.am's Wink IoT hub ask 'Where is the love?' as they're asked to pay for a new subscription service

Marketing Hack Silver badge

So many possible puns attached to this story!

"Let's Get It Started" by saying that I am disappointed that other Regenists didn't "Meet Me Halfway" in telling "Pill.i.am" to "Don't Lie" in perpetrating a "Black-Eyed Tease" on his IoT home automation customers. "Where Is The Love?"

I've seen things you people wouldn't believe. Spacecraft with graphene sails powered by starlight and lasers

Marketing Hack Silver badge

OK, great, we can get something to Alpha Centauri with a lightsail. Now what?

Unless you are sending a lightsail "ark" full of settlers to Alpha Centauri, what is the point of this trip? You've just spent billions of $ to build your spaceship, sail and lasers, and you aren't getting anything back.

This effort might be worth it, if you could send a space probe to reconnoiter the Alpha Centauri system, find anything interesting, and then return to Earth. I VERY MUCH doubt that your probe would have powerful enough communications array to send any real telemetry back to Earth from 4 light years away. Plus your probe would need an ion engine or something else on top of the light sail to navigate within the Alpha Centauri system to find these interesting bits we are looking for.

So it would need to deploy its light sail, spend 30 years getting to Alpha Centauri, take down its light sail, cruise around Alpha Centauri conducting research for several years or more, deploy its lightsail again and return to Earth and then slow down enough again to be recovered, so the data can be analyzed. So on top of the engineering challenges inherent in all that, we are talking about a 70 year+ mission.

If you can't do all that, then you are not getting anything out of the mission other than a proof of concept that you can shoot something out of the Solar System using a lightsail. Humanity would be better off using that money for missions within or on the edges of our solar system.

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Re: Calling Isaac Newton...

You'd have one hell of a time sufficiently focusing the lasers at a distance of 3 or 4 light years to slow your probe down

As coronavirus catches tech CEOs with their pants down, IBM's Ginni Rometty warns of IT's new role post-pandemic

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"people will not return to the jobs they once had."

And believe me, from running IBM the way she has, Ginni knows all about people not returning to the jobs they once had!! :)

Senior MP tells UK Defence Committee on 5G security: Russia could become China's cyber-attack dog

Marketing Hack Silver badge

There's too much China Cold War rhetoric

Hey, China has an awful human rights record, and it is possible for even Western citizens to completely disappear into the Chinese prison system. And they turned this oppression apparatus loose on their own citizens who were reporting about coronavirus outbreaks, and screwed the rest of the world in the process of doing that. And they regularly discriminate against anyone who is not a native Chinese citizen, denying them access to all manner of everyday places that native Chinese can go to. And I am totally onboard with bringing back more manufacturing of items that really do have a national security aspect to them. And I am even in favor of our military and intelligence services watching the Chinese extra closely, considering their aggressive intrusions and threats against other nation's waters and territories.

HOWEVER, we don't need to be looking for Chinese boogeymen everywhere. Might Huawei's bugs or backdoors get leaked to Russian hackers, who take advantage of them? Sure. Might those hackers contract out their services to Chinese public or private sector patrons? Sure. However, those hackers would gladly take money from public or private employers elsewhere in the world, and take advantage of bugs and backdoors in software and equipment from vendors based in anywhere in the world.

What do you call megabucks Microsoft? No really, it's not a joke. El Reg needs you

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Some (not so) humble suggestions...


"Dude, Where's my VAR"?

"The Monster That Ate Seattle"

"Windows World"

India acknowledges, but brushes aside, features-not-bugs in Aarogya Setu virus contact-tracing app

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Remind me to stay away from India...

And if I do end up there, make sure I get a phone with a battery that mysteriously keeps falling out of my phone.

Uber, Lyft struck by sue-ball, no, sue-meteorite in California after insisting their apps' drivers aren't employees

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Re: AB5 hurts more than just UBER...

Is Bombastic Bob actually William Shatner?

"Bones! Spock! The Romulans are coming through THE nebula! We must DELIVER the vaccine to Rigel 2 on TIME, or they will capture the planet!"

UK finds itself almost alone with centralized virus contact-tracing app that probably won't work well, asks for your location, may be illegal

Marketing Hack Silver badge

"will only work in the way the UK government claims it will if everyone does what it says"

"a classic failing of the Whitehall mindset that stretches back to the World War One trenches"

Not a huge follower of UK history, are we? The UK government definitely suffered from this same shortsightedness in the Boer War, the Crimean War and the American Revolutionary War. On the whole, they did run things well against Napoleon from 1805 onward. And the UK got things right in the Seven Years War, after some initial missteps.

We beg, implore and beseech thee. Stop reusing the same damn password everywhere

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@Doctor Syntax

The real reason that online stores ask you to set up a user account for a single purchase, so they can A) show the number of unique customer accounts they have in their financial and managerial metrics and B) they can better try to get you to come back to make more purchases.

Salesforce chief Marc Benioff gets clear view of pandemic, 'new balance' from guru pal

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Hey, don't knock the value of simple advice!!

After all, documentaries show that Bill & Ted changed the whole future of the human race through the mantra of "Be excellent to eachother"!

UK COVID-19 contact-tracing app data may be kept for 'research' after crisis ends, MPs told

Marketing Hack Silver badge

The database's value for market research is going to be deeply compromised because of the incredible times we are in. All manner of commercial interactions have been disrupted by stay-at-home orders, general fear about getting or spreading infection and the hesitance of others to want to interact with you. I know that I personally am going to a very different mix of stores/restaurants/businesses over the last couple months than would normally be the case.

If you had this contact-tracing data for the last couple years, or even better for the couple years AFTER coronavirus is cleared up, then it would be economic gold.

Marketing Hack Silver badge
Big Brother

Well, if the GCHQ approves, then I am all for this app!!

It's not as if the GCHQ has a history of screwing over the people (British and otherwise) through various Orwellian machinations. Or that they are completely unaccountable to British citizen, barely accountable to the average MP, or that the courts have given them free pass after free pass from various privacy protection, civil liberties and government accountability lawsuits. And of course the GCHQ would NEVER DREAM of getting a copy of this NHS "pseudonymized" database for the GCHQ's own deeply patriotic and essential purposes.

And there are all the other government arms that will be looking for a way to grab this data. I'm sure there is no risk down the line that people will be hauled in for questioning because the former NHS database is now in the hands of other agencies, and the local authorities want to know why you were in close contact for 8 minutes with someone who has an ASBO/eleven past-due library books/seventeen outstanding parking tickets, and what did you discuss with this public enemy, who is your ringleader and when and where is the next attack?

As Brit cyber-spies drop 'whitelist' and 'blacklist', tech boss says: If you’re thinking about getting in touch saying this is political correctness gone mad, don’t bother

Marketing Hack Silver badge

This change is part of the "Video Effects Artist Full Employment Act"

If anyone here is having problems finding a post-coronavirus job, there will soon be a shortage of artists needed to colorize cowboy hats in old Western movies and serials.

Avoiding any possible ethnicities' skin color, how about hot pink for the good guys' Stetsons, and forest green for the desparados?

Spyware slinger NSO to Facebook: Pretty funny you're suing us in California when we have no US presence and use no American IT services...

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Being a U.S, government contractor

NSO might be using a server(s) that were picked up by the U.S. government, then seconded to NSO. That wouldn't be the first time something like that was done. Avoidance of corporate liability is one of the reasons that major U.S. defense contractors and universities use the GOCO (government-owned contractor-operated) model for running various national labs and military and intelligence sites at the behest of Uncle Sam.

In trying times like these, it's reassuring to know you can still get pwned five different ways by Adobe Illustrator files

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IT Angle

Re: "This update resolves critical vulnerabilities"

For those optimistic fools that believed that the ongoing EoL of Flash would end the parade of Adobe security updates.

Royal Navy nuclear submarine captain rapped for letting crew throw shoreside BBQ party

Marketing Hack Silver badge

I think the real cause for disciplinary action....

Is that the brass weren't invited to join the fun!

Famously flawed, it is 30 years since the Hubble Space Telescope was launched

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Sadly, the Hubble Telescope is destined to be blown up by Zapp Brannigan


We're all stuck indoors, virtual reality tech should be hot. So why is Magic Leap chopping half its workforce?

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We need an El Reg mocking synonym for Magic Leap

"Tragic Leap" seems like the best option, but I am open to other suggestions.

ICE cold: Microsoft's GitHub wrings hands over US prez's Trump immigration ban plan

Marketing Hack Silver badge

Trump is playing to his political base....

But as for Github and its contracts with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), there is a difference between working for a government arm that encharged with enforcing a country's immigration laws, and working for some organization whose stated policy is "immigrants out!" and "America/Europe/Australia for Americans/Europeans/Australians!" You can certainly debate that the immigration laws are too harsh or too lenient, but they are laws that have been passed by the governments and representative bodies concerned, and then are regularly examined by courts to make sure that people ensnared by those laws are given due process.

For example, I bet Github has contracts with lots of European defense ministries, navies, coast guards and border police organizations that are instrumental in turning back migrants trying to get into Europe across the Mediterranean and Aegean seas.

Singapore's corona-crushing superhero squad grounded by football fans

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A comic book is only as good as it's villian...

Might I suggest "Commisar Corona"--a rogue communist party official from an unnamed Asian nation, bent on spreading fear and sickness across the globe.

House of Commons agrees to allow Zoom app in Parliament, British MPs will still have to dress smartly

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I'm betting you will see Zoom sponsoring the open bar at the next Labour and Conservative party conferences...

CFAA latest: Supremes to tackle old chestnut of what 'authorized use' of a computer really means in America

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Lazy prosecution

They went after the corrupt cop using the CFAA, but there are lots of other public graft and obstruction of justice statutes that the prosecutors could have used. Perhaps the issue is that they KNOW that he logged into the computer to run the fake license plate, but the actual mechanics of the corrupt quid-pro-quo that he received for running the plate is probably harder to prove in court.

(I don't remember Sherlock ever having to deal with this stuff. Things were so much simpler back in his day.)

ICANN delays .org sell off after California's attorney general intervenes at last minute, tears non-profit a new one over sale

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Ethos Capitall....refusing to answer specific questions about its ownership.

I'm not saying that .org is about to be taken over by space aliens, but we all know that .org is about to be taken over by space aliens.

(More seriously, how much do you want to bet that ICANN is delaying their vote so they can move out of California and the Cali AG's jurisdiction.)


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