* Posts by Billy Whiz

44 posts • joined 16 Jul 2009

Indiana, Texas, Washington DC AGs sue Google for using UI design 'dark patterns' to harvest your location

Billy Whiz

Re: Secrets -- or turn to Custom-ROM

"...but banking and payment apps usually cry foul, if you do that."

Err, no they don't. Not in my experience anyway, obviously your's may differ. I have Lineage without Google Play Services or even MicroG apps and bank app happily works without complaint and even regularly updates itself.

If an app, even a banking one, insists on Using Google Services then there are other options. Yes it may involve some inconveinience, but until people start saying no to such things nothing will change.

Rolls-Royce consortium shopping for factory sites to build mini-nuclear reactors

Billy Whiz

Re: Money for old rope

That's pretty much what an SMR is. A submarine without the 'bangy' or 'floaty' bits (or 'sinky' for that matter)

Secure boot for UK electric car chargers isn't mandatory until 2023 – but why the delay?

Billy Whiz

Re: A little calm ...

.... and the author of that really needs to go away until they know what they are talking about ....

Well that's Pen Test Partners all over as far as I can tell. They really have cried wolf once too often for my liking.

RISC-V CTO: We won't dictate chip design like Arm and x86

Billy Whiz

Re: … The interview demonstrates little grasp....

I have very little confidence with an interviewee who thinks FreeRTOS is a Linux variant or an interviewer who thinks the Automotive industry is "non-tech"

Billy Whiz

Re: what was wrong with MIPS ?

If my memory serves me right - and it may well not, feel free to correct me :) - RISC-V is a 'fork' of MIPS, if that is the correct term for an open-source ISA?

Android OS vendor variants transmit data with no opt-out

Billy Whiz

Re: Blockers?

Utter nonsense.

I have LineageOS with neither Gapps nor MicroG apps. I have checked the traffic externally to the phone and I can say with absolute certainty that isn't true.

The same same goes for for your earlier comment about a-GPS - it does not do what you claim.

Your shilling for /e/ is neither required nor appreciated!

UK funds hydrogen-powered cargo submarine to torpedo maritime emissions by 2050

Billy Whiz

Re: Box ticking

But only to the bitter end!

Windows 11 still doesn't understand our complex lives – and it hurts

Billy Whiz

Re: Browser Profiles

With Firefox you don't even need to go to all that effort. Just use "Open In New Container Tab" and select one of the pre-configured ones, Personal;work;banking, etc., or configure your own if you wish. Each container is completely isolated and you can have as many IDs logged in concurrently as you want.


Six years in the making, Vivaldi Mail arrives alongside version 4.0 of the company's browser

Billy Whiz

>let's observe that there is as yet NO alternative to Outlook

Err....... Evolution?

There are a lot of people out there who'd like to fire Jeff Bezos into space – but he's doing the honours himself

Billy Whiz

Re: Amazon Smile

Virtue signalling is no substitue for action.

If Bezos and Amazon were sincere in their intentions they would just hand the money over without asking, whilst at the same time paying proper wages, ensuring the safety of their workers, not evading taxes, etc., etc.,

SpaceX wants to slap Starlink internet terminals on planes, trucks, and boats – but Tesla owners need not apply

Billy Whiz

Re: Intelsat

Why? if they are "electrically identical to its previously authorized consumer user terminals" as stated in the article then it doesn't bode well for the quality of their products. You can't just put a consumer grade gizmo in a new box, strap it to a plane and expect it to survive the first take-off. Or a truck for that matter, the operating environment is way too strenuous.

Although this sort of thing would go a long way to explain Tesla's terrible reliabilty stats.

The wrong guy: Backup outfit Spanning deleted my personal data, claims Cohesity field CTO

Billy Whiz

The mist clears......

..... as "it looked just like most other messages from them I got weekly or monthly." ....

sounds like a moronic plot to force you to read their marketing bollocks.

Atheists warn followers of unholy data leak, hint dark deeds may have tried to make it go away

Billy Whiz

Sounds familiar

.....started a rival atheist organisation.....

So is this Reformation 2.0?

Web prank horror: Man shot dead while pretending to rob someone at knife-point for a YouTube video

Billy Whiz

Re: This is why they should be banned.

Actually there are 11 types of people in the world. Those who understand Gray code and those who don't

Google, Qualcomm team up to make long-term Android updates easier on Snapdragon

Billy Whiz

The 1980s called and want their software development practices back.

This problem was solved decades ago. Have A Harware Abstaction Layer and an API layer - with a (configurable !) coversion cludge if the 2 don't line up.

It really isn't hard, why the feck are they just getting round to it now ? Incompetent amateurs!

Manchester United email servers remain offline amid what is being called a 'ransomware' attack

Billy Whiz

Re: They're suining Football Manager

Perhaps replacing the name with "Newton Heath United" might be more appropriate

Microsoft warns against SMS, voice calls for multi-factor authentication: Try something that can't be SIM swapped

Billy Whiz

Re: Or, indeed, an open source solution where you are in control.

"Might be a little more convincing if you could actually name one....."


There you go, no need to thank me

It's powered by a mega-corp AI, it has a Liquid Mode, but it's not a T-1000. It's Adobe's PDF auto-reflow for mobile

Billy Whiz

Re: RE: Ideal to proof read before printing

From the description -

"Files cannot use Liquid Mode if they are more than 200 pages long, more than 10MB, scanned, converted from presentations, or contain “complex layouts” such as tables and charts, invoices, statements and receipts, forms, or “non-standard page sizes”."

it sounds like it is just OCR smacked around with the "AI" BrandoStick, with the result formatted to fit on the requested screen.

AI in the Enterprise: How can we make analytics and stats sound less scary? Let's call it AI!

Billy Whiz

A Rose by any other name.....

When I was at university in the early 90's studying this subject as part of an engineering degree all the lecturers insisted that under no circumstances should anything be called "Artifical Intelligence" ever. The phrase itself was castigated as an oxymoron and anyone who believed it existed a complete moron.

The course title was actually "Machine Vision and Neural Networks" and while I don't consider myself an expert, I have kept a weather eye on developments over the years. And from what I have seen all that has happened is the computers have got faster and the data sets bigger. In the intervening 30ish years there has been no advancement in the art whatsoever, as far as I can tell.

Google to appeal against €7m fine from Swedish watchdog for failing to remove search results under GDPR

Billy Whiz

"Excuse me? Sorry, no, the way the law works is every person has a 'legal basis' to say any damn thing they like, UNLESS a court rules otherwise."

That may be so in US of A, but in the civilised world, the opposite is is true.

Google tightens the screw on 'less secure apps', will block most access from June 2020

Billy Whiz

Re: Thunderbird is fine. K9 doesn't do OAUTH2 yet

It was updated 2 weeks ago according to F-droid

Apple puts bullet through 'Do Not Track', FaceTime snooping bug and iOS vulnerabilities

Billy Whiz

Missing the point

Whether Facebook, Google, Apple et al ignore Do No Track in request headers is utterly irrelavent.

When I select that option in any browser (as I always do) I am stating to the advertising world that I EXPRESSLY do not give my permission to have my behavior tracked - err, GDPR people!

I suspect the recent spate of stories about this is more of an indication how the advertisers are trying to remove my option of telling them to 'do one' that it is about any concern for my wellbeing!

Having AI assistants ruling our future lives? That's so sad. Alexa play Despacito

Billy Whiz

That's all well and good, but.........

........ would you like toast with that?

GDPR forgive us, it's been one month since you were enforced…

Billy Whiz

All of which just proves....

.....that GDPR is working.

If the companies behind those websites are asinine enough to block people legally protected from the sort of surveillance the Stasi would have been proud of, then I see that as a positve result.

Ad-filtering fiend Eyeo: Morning has broken, like the first morning

Billy Whiz

Re: Simple rules

Here, here!

Couldn't have put it better myself ---->

HP Inc exec: Yes, we'll put a bullet in the X3 device

Billy Whiz

Re: UK Sales of Goods Act

As I have said in this publication before and many other places besides (this is a bit of a bug-bear for me - as you will see!)....

It doesn't matter what any company puts in their EULA's if it contradicts statute, statute wins every time, without exception.

You, or anybody else for that matter, cannot give up the protections afforded by law, willingly or otherwise. And others most definitely cannot take away from you, the protections of law. Even if they write it on a fancy bit of paper and call it an EULA, then make you sign it to say you accept the terms, it still doesn't supersede statute - it is, literally in this case, not worth the fancy paper it is written on!

Only an act of Parliament can do that - even Judges and the judiciary cannot put aside statute.

This, of course, is the case in the UK. Your Jurisdiction May Vary!

75 years ago, one Allied radar techie changed the course of WW2

Billy Whiz

Re: As a Canadian

I was fortunate enough to attend the Dieppe raid 75th anniversay memorial in Newhaven (The boats for the Dieppe raid left from Newhaven, East Sussex) a couple of weekends ago.

One of the last Canadian veterans who was on the raid in 1942 attended and insisted on getting up from his wheelchair to walk across the lawn in front of the Canadian War Memorial to place a wreath at its base. He stood back to salute his comrades, upright and smart as a Guardsman. He then turned to offer a salute to the Defence Attaches fron Canada and the USA (there were 50 US Rangers on the Dieppe raid) and the Lord Lieutenant of East Sussex before being helped back to his wheelchair by family and friends.

It was incredibly moving and even amongst the grizzled old soldiers and sailors there were many sniffles and watery eyes, and I'm not too proud to admit I was one of them.

Google extends search tendrils to cover data in apps

Billy Whiz

One more reason.....

to never use Google for anything ever again - well not intentionally anyway. It's getting almost impossible to avoid their NSA tactics that, for reasons which escape me, commentors above seemed to think were 'opt-in'.

I've lost the remote! Fury as Samsung yoinks TV control from its iOS app

Billy Whiz

Re: which is cheaper — new phone or new TV?


Get a broom handle and prod the TV buttons with it. Don't even have to get your arse off the sofa to do that and much cheaper!

El Reg celebrates Back to the Future Day

Billy Whiz

Where's my.....

Monkey Butler!!

Roll up, roll up: Microsoft, those Irish emails and angry Feds

Billy Whiz

Here's a way ....

... for the Irish government to solve the problem. Get An Garda Síochána to issue an arrest warrant and start extradition proceedings against Judge Loretta Preska under Irish sedition laws. The should get the US courts' attention.

Mozilla testing very private browsing mode

Billy Whiz

Re: So you want to directly or indirectly pay for content somehow?

Given a choice, directly, thank you. However that requires the content providers offering something worth paying for, which is where most weborhea 2.0 sites' business plan falls down.

EU VAT law could kill thousands of online businesses

Billy Whiz

Contract v Statute

It doesn't matter what Amazon (or any other company) puts in their terms of sale -

Law trumps contract every time,

Without exception.

It does mean you will probably have to resort to the courts if you have a valid complaint, but that's what they're for!

It also raises the possibility that if Amazon (or other company) have been deemed to have breached the specific clause relating to formation of contract, then the entire contract has been breached. Although that one's not a given, you'd have to argue about it.

Boffins build billion-synapse, three-watt 'brain'

Billy Whiz

move over 8051 brain

"dubbed Neurocore, each of which has 65,536 neurons"

So it's a 16 bit brain then!

Sail HO! Look out Bay Area - it's the GOOGLE GALLEON

Billy Whiz

Re: By and Large

Or alternatively, By & Large was the name of the global mega corp in Wall-E.....

You decide which which is the most likely pun!

Telly apocalypse foretold for 4G arrival fails to hit London: Brighton next

Billy Whiz

Didn't know about the trial in Brighton

...but it might explain why FreeView reception has been particularly crap this week - jumpy picture, sound syncing problems. Reception is not particularly great where I live anyway, but has been notably worse of late.

I feel a snotty email to at800 coming on. Hummph.

ICO defends soft Street View probe

Billy Whiz
Big Brother

What no-one seems to have noticed.....

.... is that if this data was collected, as I seem to remember Google claims, to improve location mapping for Street View and other applications, then it will have to be updated on a regular basis. I'm not sure how often your average Joe breaks/moves/changes their router, but over time the reliability of data already collected will reduce.

What will Google do then? Really really really promise really hard not to do anything bad, honest guv?

BBC workers lose £240k of tech gear in two years

Billy Whiz
Thumb Down


Perhaps the more significant story here is that the people at Absolute Software (strapline from their website "Absolute Software specialises in software and services that provide an easy way to manage and secure computers."!), think it is acceptable to use FoI requests to try a sell their tat.

I'm reasonably sure the folks at the BBC have better things to spend their time and money on than some free advertising for them.

It makes their assertion that "In this case, however, this technology is paid for by the licence payer and employees should be far more careful about how they handle it." seem rather hypocritical to me.

Google Street View whacked by German prosecutors, Czech data watchdog

Billy Whiz

you hang on your minute, I'll hang on mine.

To expand on your analogy, if someone puts un-shredded bank statements in the bin, the onus is on you to not break the law and go routing around said bin looking for bank statements.

Similarly, even though it is possible for Google (and the nerd with the laptop) to see what's passing along unsecured networks, the onus is still on Google/nerd to not do so, as that would be breaking the law, as I think Viv Reding was trying to point out.

Just because you can do something is never an excuse for doing it!

Sun sat sends stunning solar snap

Billy Whiz

By my calculations....

that's a sustained data of about 1.4 Mbps (... data back to Earth at the rate of 1.5 terabytes per day).

Pretty good considering they're 150 million km from their local exchange. Wonder who their ISP is?

Irish civil rights group takes aim at iPad launch

Billy Whiz

Tá mé aon amadán

Ghair mo stocaí amach.

UK cops eye shotgun cartridge Taser

Billy Whiz
Thumb Down

Where've I heard this before?

".....but can be delivered to a maximum effective range of 100 feet (30.48 meters), combining blunt impact force....."

So what happens when somebody gets hit by one of these things from 10 feet away? not hard to imagine really.

Cameron condemns Tweeters as tw*ts

Billy Whiz

are you sure about that?

... "However, the real damage will of course be to Cameron's chances of ever seeing the inside of Number 10, now that's he's pissed off the microblogging elite of the British chattering classes by pointing out they're a bunch of twats." ...

I think the fact that he's pissed off the microblogging elite of the British chattering classes by pointing out they're a bunch of twats may actually increase his chances of moving into 10 Downing Street considerably. 'Cos lets face those chattering classes would never have voted for him anyway and a lot those who are wavering may well agree with what he said (and the way he said it!)

And if I remember correctly a "twat" is an adjective for a pregnant goldfish. Seriously, it is.

Vulture Central plans Brit-Yank dictionary

Billy Whiz

proper inglish init

I don't particularly care what words get put in the dictionary, but please make sure you put the bloody 'u's in the correct place - it's colour!!!

And for the love of all that's holy can someone please do something about Merkins trying to use nouns as verbs - see http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/07/16/google_chillerless_data_center/ - "...When the temperature starts to excurse in a data center...". What the feck does that mean???

(And BTW it's centre, not center!!!)



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