* Posts by BenDwire

257 posts • joined 30 Jun 2009

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NASA to stop using names like 'Eskimo Nebula' and 're-examine' what it calls cosmic objects

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

The origin of "Gammon" comes from a BBC political discussion programme called "Question Time". A newspaper columnist observed that enraged audience members would become angry and red-faced, stating that they looked like gammons. Whilst I can see the funny side of that, the woke playground bullies that latched onto it have taken the joke a tad too far.

I'll write "OK Boomer" so nobody else has to bother.

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000d70h

youtube-dl https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000d70h

You're welcome.

You had one job... Just two lines of code, and now the customer's Inventory Master File has bitten the biscuit

BenDwire Silver badge
Pint

Re: Adding a comment sometimes caused compile failure

Ah! Ah! Ahhhh!

I got 99 problems, and all of them are your fault

BenDwire Silver badge
Go

Re: It sometimes works the other way

As I've mentioned before, the difference in price is equivalent to a decent curry every month. I'd rather go without a curry, than be forced to use an offshored call-centre. Sometimes you do get what you pay for.

Microsoft confirms pursuit of TikTok after Satya Nadella chats to Donald Trump

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Tik Tok, Tik Tok ...

Microsoft TikTok, Boom, Crash, Tinkle. Er, oops!

What the duck? Bloke keeps getting sent bathtime toys in the post – and Amazon won't say who's responsible

BenDwire Silver badge

... and most of them were fowl

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin. Hang on, the PDP 11/70 has dropped offline

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: Clean Agile Development

I was recently involved in a large design project that baffled the engineering team as it was stupidly complex with lots of conflicting requirements. We resorted to a brainstorming session, drawing on all the white boards we could muster, and even sticking self adhesive ones to the walls. When we eventually finished, all four walls were covered in diagrams, and it was clear that someone had to document the end results. As a stopgap I pulled out my phone and use CamScanner to photograph each board and convert it to a multi-page pdf, then email it to all the attendees. I was quite impressed - modern technology can actually be quite good at times.

Microsoft accused of sharing data of Office 365 business subscribers with Facebook and its app devs

BenDwire Silver badge
Go

Don't use a Pi

Whilst there is nothing wrong with using a Pi (apart from the occasional corrupt SD card now and again) I installed it on an existing Debian box instead. It's happily coped with 30+ users in an SME and nobody noticed any performance issues. I did the same at home too.

Mainframe madness as the snowflakes take control – and the on-duty operator hasn't a clue how to stop the blizzard

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: Operator revenge

Simpler times indeed - I had a Win3.11 compter hooked up to our SPARCStation through the serial port, and could log in with a terminal program. Apart from the wonderful script I had that turned it into a cuckoo clock, I was also able to sample the CAD operator's very loud burping and play that back at random, or even replace the bongs on the afore mentioned clock. Oh what fun we had in those simple days ... and yes, I was the boss.

Nokia 5310: Retro feature phone shamelessly panders to nostalgia, but is charming enough to be forgiven

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: Backup phone

Three UK has a free SIM on the 123 tariff that only needs one call or text every 6 months to keep activated. At least I don't have to give my real number out to delivery people any more.

Here's why your Samsung Blu-ray player bricked itself: It downloaded an XML config file that broke the firmware

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: Thanks Gray!

Put a Pi-hole on your network and you'll be able to catch several other domains that Sammy uses. Of course it stops all other "upgrades" too, until you choose to let them in.

Better get Grandpa off Windows 7 because zero-day bug in Zoom allows remote code execution on vintage OS

BenDwire Silver badge
Linux

Re: Try moving gramma to Windows 10, if you like pain.

Honestly I doubt it would have been any more painful to just move her to Linux.

I made the choice to abandon windows when I decided to retire, as I couldn't be bothered to ascend the learning curve with WIn10. There was a lot of Duck Ducking in the early days, but now it's mostly settled down nicely. I like to keep my days interesting and grey cells active by using Debian Testing, but even then it *just works*. If I had to support another user it would be a trivial matter now.

Oddly enough I do have MS's Visual Code installed, and a few legacy Win programs on Wine, but I've managed to find decent native programs for everything else I need.

Linus Torvalds banishes masters, slaves and blacklists from the Linux kernel, starting now

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: "'master / slave' (or 'slave' independent of 'master')'"

I'm hoping the rise in attention deficit disorders will allow this virtue signalling to fizzle out. If it doesn't they're making their future lives very Orwellian.

BenDwire Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: male/female

My tongue-in-cheek detector has been alerted, but in the interest of clarity, the male/female designation always refers to the contact. The 'gender' of the shroud is of no consequence.

BenDwire Silver badge
Headmaster

1984

Back in the days of corporal punishment, we were taught that book at school. It should be made mandatory for today's generation as a warning, but knowing the state of the teaching profession it will be seen as an instruction manual.

Tony Blair tells Russian infosec conference that cross-border infosec policies need more gov intervention

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

'kin politicians

Why was this guy never prosecuted? And why is he allowed to spout bollocks whenever he feels like it?

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

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: So...

While you can disable Amber Alerts etc you can't disable presidential ones.

What, orange ones?

Privacy watchdogs from the UK, Australia team up, snap on gloves to probe AI-for-cops upstart Clearview

BenDwire Silver badge
Big Brother

Re: Wow..

IIRC there was a case in the USA where it was judged that because someone had posted publicly on Instagram they had forfeited their claim to copyright. If that is correct, then this would set a rather uncomfortable precedent.

Oddly enough, I abandoned Facebook years back when they changed the terms such that any uploaded photo was theirs to do whatever they liked with. It’s bad enough seeing gurning pictures of crims and their victims all over the media, but I imagine they could make some serious profit from Clearview etc.

Heir-to-Concorde demo model to debut in October

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: The rich are getting richer

Or as Paul Weller sang, "Too much money in not enough places"

Hungry? Please enjoy this delicious NaN, courtesy of British Gas and Sainsbury's

BenDwire Silver badge
Thumb Down

Butterscotch? Nope.

As a teen of the 1970's I have mixed memories of the food back then. I used to live on a diet of Angel Delight, baked beans and Smash (in separate bowls!) as my usually absent mother left me to fend for myself - ironically she was a social worker! But butterscotch? Nope. Any other flavour was fine, but butterscotch was too foul for words. Remember / Be aware that the 1970's gave us Vesta curries, pot noodles, liver sausage and spam fritters, so I had adapted to eat most things when required.

The standard of cuisine was so low it is considered a trip hazard these days.

I generally avoid anything that passed my lips in those dark days, and have so far lived to tell the tale...

Civil-rights probe: Facebook has completely failed to… Zuck: Look over here! We’ve banned four groups! Go me!

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Is anybody surprised?

I've tried explaining, they are too stupid to understand. Dunning-Kruger in action.

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

BenDwire Silver badge

Yes, I had a legal licence for WinRar too!

BenDwire Silver badge
Coat

Before hanging my 'scope probes up I used to use LO throughout my business, and at the end of the financial year made donations to the various Open Source projects we used. Admittedly not as much as a M$ licence would cost, but then again it's not M$ is it? I know I'm probably in the minority (I mean, I even purchased WinZip licences in the 1990's) but if only a few more business helped out it would improve the quality of the code no end.

Mine's the white one, like my clinical supervisors wear ...

Fret not, Linux fans, Microsoft's Project Freta is here to peer deep into your memory... to spot malware

BenDwire Silver badge
Devil

Re: Physician.

Certainly. If you'd just bend over while I stand behind you ...

Another anti-immigrant rant goes viral in America – and this time it's by a British, er, immigrant tech CEO

BenDwire Silver badge
Meh

Re: We hear these stories all the time

Racism isn’t getting worse, it’s simply getting captured on film (or pixels)

I've been alive a long time, and most of my social network are not racist. We've be taught that people are equal regardless of gender or the tone of thier skin. That doesn't mean that everyone is as competent for a particular job, but that decision is purely down to ability.

However, I do note that a lot of people (e.g. influencers & celebrities) desperate for 'likes' seem to take it upon themselves to expose events that would have paled into insignificance in earlier decades. Rightly or wrongly, this is the new normal, and people need to think far more before venting off in public. But behaviour like this sells newspapers / generates clicks, so it's self-amplifying.

Let's be careful out there ...

Mind the airgap: Why nothing focuses the mind like a bit of tech antiquing

BenDwire Silver badge
Pint

We are not alone

There seems to be a reasonable percentage of commentards who have been touched by this 'condition'. My nephew was diagnosed with Dyspraxia and Dyslexia 25 years ago, and he's a very clever little nerd!! Has all the communication abilities of a goth, and lives in the same timezone as most vampires. Unfortunately he takes after me in many ways, as do my sons - none of us can spell, write, read music or dance. Most of us can press F7, fix stuff, play music and drink heavily - no all of us drink heavily! So are we the oddballs? Or are we the normal ones?

Anyway, to fix the WiFi on old kit, get an original 802.11b access point and set it up with the best security you can manage. You can turn it off when not in use to protect the rest of the network (or shove it on a VLAN through a managed switch). Just my 2p.

When a deleted primary device file only takes 20 mins out of your maintenance window, but a whole year off your lifespan

BenDwire Silver badge
Linux

Impending doom

Assuming this is a warning from the gods about impending doom, I'm going to have a play with debugfs to see how this is done (hopefully before I need to use it in anger!)

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: Could be worse...

You can do just as many daft things with Ubuntu, but there is much less cllicking involved!!

If there's a lesson to be learned in these torrid times, it's that civilisation is fleeting – but Windows XP is eternal

BenDwire Silver badge

That's a big 'IF', but assuming someone has done their job right I would agree with you.

Analogue radio given 10-year stay of execution as the UK U-turns on DAB digital future

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Radio 4 LW?

When I was a lad (Work experience at English Electric Valves) I was involved in the testing of those transmitter valves, and yes I broke one of the test rigs! I ought to write that one up as a "Who Me" tale!

The good news: Vodafone switches on first full-fat, real-life 5G network in the UK. The bad news: it only got sent to Coventry

BenDwire Silver badge
Pint

"So, almost complete hype then. Usual bollocks."

It's so nice to be surrounded by like-minded souls. Have one on me!

Dutch national broadcaster saw ad revenue rise when it stopped tracking users. It's meant to work like that, right?

BenDwire Silver badge

Adverts?

Pihole. That is all.

Cool IT support drones never look at explosions: Time to resolution for misbehaving mouse? Three seconds

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Green and Amber screens

The mention of green screens reminded me of the early PC days when the monitor was monochrome, and either green or amber for upmarket CAD systems (Hercules graphic cards anyone?). I remember my CAD operator walking into my office and cheerfully sat down with a fresh coffee, saying that his screen just died, and therefore could do no more work until I bought him a new one. After assuring me he'd done nothing to cause the fault except tidy his desk off I went to have a look. Power LED? Check. Computer on? Check. Cables connected? Check. Keyboard pushed right under the monitor, touching the control knobs ... Ah! Restoring the brightness and contrast levels to a central position soon wiped the grin of the smug git's face ...

Brit MPs vote down bid to delay IR35 reforms, press ahead with new tax rules for private-sector contractors

BenDwire Silver badge
Stop

The big consultancy firms want IR35

Someone on these hallowed forums pointed out that the big consultancies want to get rid of freelancers as they pose a cheaper, more competent, threat to their excessive fees. I’m sure they are lobbying as hard as they possibly can ...

Microsoft takes tweaking tongs to Windows 10's Start Menu once again

BenDwire Silver badge

Or glittery lipstick ?

Consumer orgs ask world's competition watchdogs: Are you really going to let Google walk off with all Fitbit's data?

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Alternative Issue....

I'm sure many people will agree with you, but only those of us that are older / greyer / longer in the tooth / have no teeth left.

People simply don't want to bother with local storage. It's too difficult for them, and most youngsters don't even know how to open stuff that isn't in the cloud. Even an accountant friend of mine would rather trust his data to a paid Dropbox account than spend less money keeping it in a box at home.

I still buy CDs and DVDs which I consider to be an offline backup that I can pass onto my kids, especially as it appears than many classics are being "revised" or "no platformed" in case they offend future generations. George Orwell was meant to be a warning, not a blueprint for society.

University of California San Francisco pays ransomware gang $1.14m as BBC publishes 'dark web negotiations'

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: So, nothing important was encrypted

Ah yes, but that expenditure comes out of a different budget you see!

As well as having a decent off-line archive, people could encrypt their own files by default, then at least the crims won't be able to leak anything meaningful? It's probably in the "too difficult for people" category though.

US govt: Julian Assange tried to recruit hacker to steal hush-hush dirt and we should know – the hacker was an informant

BenDwire Silver badge
Unhappy

Re: I keep seeing this word "hacker" ...

Give it 50 years or so and the classified documents will be available for all to see. I suspect we won't be around to see that ...

We're no longer helping UK Post Office persecute postal workers with our shonky system, says Fujitsu

BenDwire Silver badge
Flame

Re: And hopefully the summary

I think we all know that no-one is ever going to be properly held to account for this mess, but it may have had something to do with the latest announcement that many senior managers are going to be sent on their way. Good riddence to them, but I'd be happier if proper charges were brought, with convictions.

It's the sub-postmaster's families that have been destroyed over the years I feel sorry for.

Here's a headline we never thought we'd write 20 years ago: Microsoft readies antivirus for Linux, Android

BenDwire Silver badge
Linux

Re: Careful!

Come here ... let me embrace you!

Windows fails to reach the Finnish line as Helsinki signage pleads for help

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

Sledgehammer, meet nut.

Why on earth do people insist on putting a heavyweight OS behind something that's just showing a few pictures?

Folk sure like to stick electric toothbrush heads in their ears: True wireless stereo sales buck coronavirus trends

BenDwire Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Little known company called Onkyo

They do some pretty good AV amps too - The very nice folk at Richer Sounds will let you have a listen if you ask nicely.

If Fairphone can support a 5-year-old handset, the other vendors could too. Right?

BenDwire Silver badge

Re: I expect that I will be downvoted...

Unfortunately the fiaso with throttling older handsets with worn-out batteries went against them. I can understand the engineering reasons for that, but the execution came across as a cynical ploy for people to upgrade.

Customers of Brit ISP Virgin Media have downloaded an extra 325GB since March, though we can't think why

BenDwire Silver badge

Indeed so. My lockdown hobby has been downloading 'content' onto my plex server, and finally transfering stuff off my Humax boxen.

Tens of millions of Internet-of-Things, network-connected gizmos at risk of remote hijacking? Computer, engage shocked mode

BenDwire Silver badge
Boffin

Re: How many of these things actually have a mechanism for firmware updates?

My Samsung TV still can't use iPlayer, despite it being supported. Even the support department have run out of ideas.

On the plus side all my smart lightbubs have nice fresh firmware - I replaced it with Tasmota that allows cloud-free operation behind a nice secure firewall. I'm guessing that's not what the IoT vendors were hoping for ...

Splunk to junk masters and slaves once a committee figures out replacements

BenDwire Silver badge
Joke

Re: New wave

Or how about Wife and Husband? (i.e. SWMBO)

Microsoft disbands three-ring Windows Insider circus and replaces it with 'channels'

BenDwire Silver badge

Just Maybe ...

It's possible that someone has finally acknowledged that the quality of code actually matters. Being Agile is all well and good, but things shouldn't stay broken as badly as they often are. Let's wait and see.

There's no accounting for TITSUP*: Beancounters bemoan Sage cloudy sync software outage

BenDwire Silver badge
Mushroom

Expect the PC brigade to decide it is sexist etc etc and should be changed

Don't worry, we have an alternative gender version - COCKUP

Customer Outraged, Cloud Knackered Under Pressure

Couple wrongly arrested over Gatwick Airport drone debacle score £200k payout from cops

BenDwire Silver badge
Facepalm

You're assuming that someone in the gubbermint knows what incompetence looks like. Pot, Kettle, and all that.

BenDwire Silver badge
Joke

Re: The legal beagles scored almost 75%?

And do you honestly think that helped his image?

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