* Posts by Weeble

57 publicly visible posts • joined 24 Jun 2009


Google works on Blink-based iOS browser contrary to Apple's WebKit rule



The reason I got an iPhone was in an attempt (probably futile) to keep at least some of my private life out of Google's clutches.

Once Chrome (hower disguised) gets onto the iPhone I assume it'll be gave-over?

Privacy is for paedophiles, UK government seems to be saying while spending £500k demonising online chat encryption


Re: Sure. Why not cull E2EE...?

Sounds a lot like Google and Google Glass.

Which came first? The surveillance specs or the book?

Apple announces lossless HD audio at no extra cost, then Amazon Music does too. The ball is now in Spotify's court


Re: Lol, round the bend

Is this oversampling, of which you speak, limited only to dedicated hardware CD Players, or does it also happen inside one's phone when listening to a streaming service? Or, for that matter, when playing ripped files on a PC using a software media player?

I am reminded of an Amstrad joke from back in the day:

The techs are demonstrating the new all-in-one to Alan Sugar...

AMS: Frankly lads, I can't tell the difference between the CD and the LP.

Techs: Easily fixed sir, we'll degrade the LP sound a bit more.

Gone in 60 electrons: Digital art swaggers down the cul-de-sac of obsolescence


Re: Music industry all over again

It's not supposed to become "The Best of Queen" until AFTER it has been in the car for some time.

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


Re: Cookies

A thousand up-votes for that.

And why, pray, were there any Google scripts on the site for NoScript to block?

When was the last time Google didn't do something just because they had been asked not to?

Tomorrow's news: Google apologises for accidentally siphoning up the entire census, "it was a rogue engineer wot dun it".

I work therefore I ache: Logitech aims to ease WFH pains with Ergo M575 trackball mouse


Re: Never found a replacement for the Trackman Marble FX T-CJ12

>> As a replacement (Sort of) for the Microsoft trackball, that is no longer supported in Windows

Which versions of Trackball on which versions of Windows?

Any links to write-ups?

A very worried Trackball Explorer addicts needs to know!

One of Blighty's most-loved charities hands £46m to one of Blighty's least-loved outsourcers


Card Readers

Yet another database telling ne'er-do-wells where you are in real time.

[Typically a long way from home so there's plenty of time to steal the telly]

Brilliant :(

Those card scanners are an abomination!

Oi, drag this creaking, 217-year-old UK census into the data-driven age


"Does the government also have to know about political preference or sexual habits?"

Well, I don't know about political preferences, but when it comes to disease control and other health matters I can see value in knowing what "the people in general" get up to in their bedrooms.

123-Reg customers outraged at automatic .UK domain registration


Re: TSOHOST just did the same thing

"All owned by Paragon which is owned by Hosteurope which is owned by GoDaddy. So that's why they're all doing it IMHO."

Does anybody publish lists of who-owns-who?

It might save a bit of pain on any re-hosting exercise.

Labour says it will vote against DUP's proposed TV Licence reforms


RE: Untitled

"I like the BBC but at the current moment in time with regards to their news I don't care if they stop getting the licence fee and move to a commercial model because I won't be paying for it."

But you will be paying, just as you are paying for everything put out on the commercial channels you don't watch either. That advertising budget comes out of higher prices for [all] the goods and services sold by the purchasers of that advertising space. And advertising space on the BBC is likely to be expensive.

In short, by not watching TV at all you can opt out of the licence fee, but you can't realistically opt out of funding the ITV.

Samsung PC, laptop owner? Better update the update tool


Re: 50% Improvement

"People will buy a product that's "50% faster than last generation!" but let's face it, "50% more secure than last generation!" isn't going to pull in the crowds."

Perhaps that's because "50% faster than last generation!" can be a genuine improvement,

while "50% more secure than last generation!" means it's still shot through with vulnerabilities and still leaks like a sieve.

Eighteen year old server trumped by functional 486 fleet!


Re: Crusty old computer

Because, quite literally, the CPUs were too fast for the software.

I recall one program, I think it may have been dBASE II, which used timestamps with one second resolution for temporary file names - and these new fangled CPUs were so fast they could create two files a second.

I'm sure it wasn't an isolated instance.

After Death Star II blew: Dissecting the tech of Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens


Foundation and Empire

I just think they're following Asimov's lead:

A formerly all-powerful empire that is no longer able to maintain, let alone develop, it's advanced weapons technology - but which remains a threat due to the strength of its remaining "old" weapons - versus a bunch up upstarts that haven't got the resources to build their own mega-weapons but do get hold of a few from the Empire by economically defeating small parts of it at a time.

Our cookies save you from TERRORISTS, Facebook thunders to Belgian judge


Re: Ad Block Plus

"Removing Flash and Java also has a hugely positive effect on many sites, but leaves others completely non-functional: surely a breach of accessibility law?"

I too would be interested to know the answer to that.

What classes of sites have to be "accessible", and do the rules require that accessibility to be achieveable from a snoop-free browser with images, flash and scripting turned off, all known privacy measures & ad-blockers enabled, and running under Free-BSD (or a similarly paranoid OS)?

'A word processor so simple my PA could use it': Joyce turns 30


Re: Yes, dBase II was the key ingrediant for me.

Ditto. Still got the original dBII database running under DOSBOX on Windows.

Had one of the very early PCW8256 machines, Did the 512K memory upgrade with a soldering iron!

Oxford Uni unearths 800-year-old document to seize domain names


Re: Embedded names?

Ford, near Salisbury, springs immediately to mind.

eBay planning massive job cuts following PayPal split – report


"There will be changes; there will be significant changes."

1) Actively stamping on fraudulent sellers (where "in UK" arrives airmail from HongKong, 3 or more "fronts" to a single trader, etc.)

2) A meaninful feedback system (why do I have to say "marvellous, fabulous, amazing", just to avoid being seen as "negative").

3) World Peace

Actually, (3) is most likely.

Mastercard and Visa to ERADICATE password authentication



So, now I have to go and buy an iPhone* (+contract) just to authorise my credit cards ????

I'm not sad to see VbV abolished, but maybe this is too high a price.

(*Other mobile phones may be available in your market).

Bright lights, affordable motor: Ford puts LED headlights onto Mondeo


Re: Dazzle.

While it was only AUDI/BMW/MERCEDES fitting these "retina-searing xenon lights" I assumed the dazzle factor was 100% intentional.

If Ford are joining in (albeit with LEDs) then perhaps it was incompetence after all.

Your files held hostage by CryptoDefense? Don't pay up! The decryption key is on your hard drive


Are backups any defence.

Seriously, are continuous backups any defence against this kind of attack.

Surely, by the time you've received the ransom notice you've already backed-up the encrypted versions.

Aside from large outfits, who can back up to a fresh tape every hour with a month-long (or even year-long) rotation policy, what can a mere mortal do?

And how does one stop those backups from being directly encrypted - if it's on the network it's surely at risk.

iPhone too heavy? Volkswagen brings out motorised ride-on dock


Prior Art

Didn't George Lucas already think of this one?

X-Wing = R2 Dock

Bob Dylan's new album is 'Copyright Extension Collection'


Re: I have a current problem with copyrights....

" ... but if there is a known creator then by definition all assets must be passed on as inheritance ..."

Thank you for that observation.

Most of what I've read about orphans claims that "if you couldn't find the author (or estate) with reasonable diligence - you could help yourself", which implies the author is already known - but, based on the MOA, nothing with a name on it can ever be an "orphan" while it's less than a couple of lifetimes old (and at current rates of extension will never become available).

I have similar, those less highly developed, concerns to your own (the archiving and making available of material of historical interest) so I can sympathise with your position and am more than a little disturbed by the conclusions.

Perhaps the archivists perennial problem of digital archive longevity will become irrelevant once there is nothing to put in them.


Re: I have a current problem with copyrights....

Ah, but...

If no-one knows (or can prove) who owns them then that presumably makes them "orphans".

So, within a year or two, you should be able to do whatever you want to do with them?

BBC in secret trial to see if you care about thing you plainly don't


Re: Blowing air

Actually, switching off entire stations (rather than just the am transmitters) shold have been included as a "control". Perhap the reason no-one noticed the loss of am is that no-one is listening to those local stations "at all".

Happy birthday, Compact Disc


Re: Is there any truth

Yes. Some truth at least.

The discs pressed by PDO in the UK, for a certain period, all had a habit of turning bronze and becoming unreliable/unplayable. I still have a couple left that won't rip, though I haven't tried playing them in a normal player recently.

At the time (and I think I'm talking about 10-15 years ago now), PDO did the decent thing and offered to swap-out the affected discs. An offer I accepted... I can't imagine the industry, as it is today, being quite so honourable.

EU greases up orphan works copyright loophole for Big Culture


Re: So things published under a law to stop other people publishing them

Perhaps that needs to be a feature of the databases people keep talking about. Somewhere where you can post a list of all your "old" identities and contact details (as used in copyright/metadata) along with a mapping to your current details.

A search of that database should be a mandatory part of the "reasonable" attempts to trace the originator.

PS: How about another rule which says that an image with NO metatdata shall be considered "mutilated" rather than "orphaned" since it must have been willfully stripped.

Apple: You'd want hi-fi streamage from us, not poor-people Wi-Fi audio


Profitable though...

Whilst Apple remain so dominantly "flavour of the month", any protocol/interface they offer to the audio/video industry will be eagerly embraced by all and sundry (even if it means buying a licence) simply because of the fear of getting left behind.

I suppose it's a form of feedback. Manufacturers have to support apple protocols because apple devices are so popular, apple devices become more popular because they're so widely supported.

Any alternative offering will have a very hard time of it trying to establish an ecosystem (even if they pay audio/video manufacturers to include it).

Lords blast UK.gov's fixation on broadband speed over reach


Re: Re: @AndrueC

> Bollox. I don't think there's ever been a universally accepted definition within the telecoms industry.

In the good-old-days of analogue modems (been there, done that, 300 Baud acoustically-coupled), broadband began at 2 Meg, because that was the point where you got your own bit of CoAx cable at the exchange. Typically a hideously expensive leased line. Anything less was just multiples of 64kb/s speech circuits on twisted pairs.

I don't diasgree that 512 kb/s is vastly better than 28.8 kb/s, but just because it's better doesn't make it "Broad".



Half a Meg is NOT broadband, its just an always-on, slightly-faster, modem (unless you're with TalkTalk in which case it's not even always-on). I challenge you to watch even a low-res YouTube clip on just half a Meg - I never managed it.

Broadband BEGINS at 2 Meg (and it always has). At that point, a single user (only) can probably use iPlayer in real-time, or watch a video clip on the BBC web-site without it stuttering too badly.

UK Border Agency to create 'national allegations database'



Didn't the STASI do just this?

Has our government forgotten the consequences already?

I seem to recall it wasn't pretty.

BT bags MASSIVE £425m broadband rollout deal in Wales


Up To ???

So, what they're really saying is that Cardiff, and one or two Labour marginals, will be offered FTTP whilst most of the rest of the country might get FTTC. But no mention of the alluminised string used to connect the cabinet to the premesis over the final mile.

By the time they finish the roll-out (and with no competition from Fujitsu I doubt they'll worry about the 2015 deadline) I'm sure that FTTC will be as up-to-date as a bakelite telephone.

Apple rejoins EPEAT green tech cert program

Thumb Down

What they really mean ...

"On the contrary, he writes, Apple would like to see the existing EPEAT standards strengthened to include more of the environmental protection practices Cupertino uses in its manufacturing today..."

Namely, all the ones we have patents on.

Door creaks and girl farts: computing in the real world

Thumb Down

RE: what else do you want - parallel printer ports?

Yes please. We still have software tied to non-upgradable parallel security keys. [No, USB adapters don't work.]

Lords give automatic smut censorship bill the once-over


Re: Once they have this "think of the children" system in place...

"Think of all the other "stuff we don't like (TM)" that it can be applied to"

No need, I'm sure *they* already have a very long list...


Re: A Little Story, or Two. Or Three.

If I recall the "not the nine o'clock news" sketch correctly, you were supposed to phone the electricity company.

So, what IS the worst film ever made?



Not that nine other people here are likely to have seen it.

I still don't know what it was about...

(Didn't he do something famous later on?)

Encyclopaedia Britannica nukes print edition, goes digital-only


Re: History almost repeating ...

I also had an early Britannica CD-ROM (late 1990's I think), I seem to recall it was so bad that it made Encarta (RIP) look good.

It was also chronically unstable (did it use Internet Explorer as its rendering engine?)

Mind you, the OED on CD looks little better, and is just as unupgradable. Erudition, it would appear, does not confer an ability in UI design, s/w design, or customer focus


Lenovo ThinkPad Tablet


USB 2.0

Is it my imagination, or is this actually the first tablet to offer a full USB 2.0 port?

[I exclude the Transformer as the USB is on the keyboard dock].

Does this mean I can finally load images, from my camera's CF cards (with suatable adapter), in the field?

Comet sheds 450 jobs in biz survival struggle


Long Term Success

"Because nothing says long term business like a bricks and mortar electronics retailer?"

Depends whose success you're talking about.

I'm sure that there are many successful on-line retailers that depend on peoples' ability to inspect the goods in Comet/Currys prior to making an on-line purchase.

Or do you prefer to buy your TVs without ever seeing one (or a close equivalent)?

Five ways Microsoft can rescue Windows Phone


When I'm Sixty Four

>> Brilliant marketing point there: Windows Phone - for the old and half-blind!

Agreed, the problem is how to dress it up such that people can buy your products without being seen to admit that they're old-n-grey. This is Doro's problem.

Ever since the 2-line-LCD display became old-fashioned, I've failed to find an affordable phone I can read - they all have such noisy graphics as backgrounds (with no mechanism to change them).

> I vote for GrumpyOS, as the new name.

Sorry, Disney's already got that one: Snow White and the dance of the seven mobile phones.

Airbrushed Rachel Weisz gets watchdog hot under the collar



Could be time for a new ASA guidleline:

Shoot all "cosmetics" adverts under natural light.

Just find a studio with a big north-facing window - they do exist.

Samsung 11.6in 'retina display' tablet spied



If it's a phone, it has to be small enough go in your pocket (and be tough enough to be sat on).

If not, it might as well be big enough to show a sheet of A4 at life-size.

Anything in-between is just a trade-off between the two useful sizes.

Apple launches three-pronged education assault


That picture ...

... is one of the scariest I have seen in a long time.

Even a medieval Jesuit couldn't have done better.

Where are all the decent handheld scribbling tools?


Why wait 'til tomorrow?

I'd buy one this afternoon (providing they can somewhere close to Psion battery life).

Hundreds of Mr A N OTHERs discovered on payrolls


Sheep ...

and cattle for that matter, are so closely regulated these days that the shepherd probably does know the stock-number of every single beast, to a level of precision only dreamed of by the Inland Revenue.

Apple versus Samsung: key points in the ruling


Cupertino only won by a nose ...

... but that is still a win, in this "winner takes all" battle. Christmas has gone up in smoke, so Samsung may as well pull out of Australia now.

I wonder if Apple will be increasing its prices in AU$ ????

Valve chief says Apple will own your living room


Power of the Brand

This is, of course, the power of the "Brand".

Once a consumer decides that Apple (or Sony, or whoever) is a "Good Brand", they will stick by that Brand no matter how far behind the curve their products might be, simply because it comes from a "Good Brand".

The "Brand" is however a double edged weapon. Just as it creates loyalty, it can also create hatred.

Consumers may decide that Apple (or Sony, or whoever) is an "Evil Brand". It may take just one act of perceived evil, or an entire company culture, to acquire the "Evil" label, but consumers have long memories and will never buy from "Evil Brand" - no matter how far ahead of the field the products may be - they are still "Evil".

Rooney exits Man U with a few choice words



'Ere, lay off my handle...

OED goes the way of all flesh paper


Never mind paper...

For the sake of posterity, the exisiting OED2 and any future OED3 need to be available hand-scribed onto the finest vellum in stout leather bindings.

Available evidence show that hese will still be readable in 1000 years, whilst any electronic means will be lucky to last 1000 weeks.

UK ICT classes killing kids' interest in tech



By the sounds of things, they should be calling it CTI (Corporate Tools Indoctrination).

Schools are supposed to churn out future employees who already know how to use the tools required by their future employers. It's not about understanding what's inside the box. Besides, taking the lid off to see what's inside is probably a violation of HSE guidelines.

Though, saying that, I know of one school that said "here's a pile of bits, see if you can put them together" - it generated some genuine enthusiasm.