* Posts by Spanners

1141 posts • joined 10 Sep 2009

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

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Go

Re: Trivial Biscuits

The only biscuit story ending is

"If you give him a biscuit, he'll let you!"

Amazon declined to sell a book so Elon Musk called for it to be broken up

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Go

@Fruit and Nutcase

Surely an oddometer is something used to count weirdos?

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Paris Hilton

Re: Oh Elon - where did you lose your way? In Paris?

I suspect that the icons are in a database somewhere. If you delete one, it will break the database - or at least anything that uses it.

This reminds me that most IT call logging systems do the same. They have lists of users, customers, engineers etc. We manage.

I am sure a proper database person will have looked into this. If they want, they could add/hide certain icons. I can hear the screams already!

Who should we replace Paris with anyway?

NSA warns that mobile device location services constantly compromise snoops and soldiers

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Alert

Re: They make it your problem

"You don't want those Chinese getting hold of your information. Do you, citizen?"

I have difficulty in explaining just how little I care. I do, however, not like the idea of the NSA, CIA, FBI or any other TLA getting my personal information.

"What's the difference?" some may ask. It's what happens to it afterwards that makes me vary between extreme apathy and extreme unhappiness.

When the NSA or whatever criminal organisation you want has finished with my stuff, there is a good chance it will make its way to the private sector and could be used for anything from advert targeting, predicting my financial activities to simple corporate fraud.

When the Chinese spooks have finished looking at me the information will be filed - and that's it. The only direct contact with a Chinese seller I have ever had is Wish. Are they what DT considers a dangerous tool of the CCP?

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FAIL

@Chris G

...they are apparently the good guys...

We are talking about the NSA here. They are not, by any reasonable use of the phrase "good guys".

They are a criminal organisation. They may be from a nominally friendly government but they are in no way the good guys. They may, on occasion, do us a favour sometimes but so does the Mafia and even whatever the KGB is now called. They still want all our stuff and have no qualms about throwing anyone else under the bus if that is needed to complete their current mission.

USA decides to cleanse local networks of anything Chinese under new five-point national data security plan

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Alert

@Julz

...assume that all current silicone is similarly compromised.

Now that is more worrying! Are you insinuating that all our plastic surgeons are agents of the CCP?

Google to pull plug on Play Music, its streaming service that couldn't beat Spotify, in favour of YouTube Music

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Unhappy

First I escaped from iTunes

iTunes had a nice feature that ripped any music CD to MP3. When google said I could synch my "collection", I just synched that folder. It tended to have iTunes cruft in there so when I synched that back to my new PC(s) this increasingly insignificant junk came too.

For some time Google has been telling me to link it with its latest offering I have been prepared for it to dump music.google.com in the same way as other useful things have been dumped in the past. I have no interest in an additional streaming app. Spotify is fine. I just like the option of saving what I have bought and paid for in such a way that I can play it on my phone, tablet or whatever. Yes, I could easily rig something up round my house but, sometimes, I go out the door!

As the world descends into madness, it's good to see some things never change: Monthly Android patches

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Flame

Read this and started downloading update

After it forced me to connect to a WiFi. I have unlimited data and the Wifis here are not great. No, 4G is not perfect either but it doesn't disconnect me if it feels I haven't been paying attention for too long.

I have a couple of other apps with this annoying habit. Please give me an option to do everything on my SIM. Warn me, if you like, that phone companies can charge me for that (they don't).

After this has downloaded its 106MB and rebooted, I will have to remember to turn off the WiFi so that things still work when I actually want them to! I averaged over a GB a day last month. I don't think that I need them to save me 0.1 of one in this way.

Virgin Galactic pals up with Rolls-Royce to work on Mach 3 Concorde-style private jet that can carry up to 19 people

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Go

Re: Afterburners

Not the only one. I'm not sure if we can count anything from the USSR as "civilian" but someone stuck afterburners on a Falcon 20.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jl1tzsLlUAo

It was a civilian aircraft even if that one was owned bt the USCG

Microsoft to Cortana: you’re not going out dressed in iOS or Android, young lady!

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Happy

Re: Yes

Mine is playing "Dog Calming Music" from Spotify. It seems to do what it says quite nicely.

Co-inventor of the computer mouse, William English, dies

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Re: Trackerball?

Or cleaning the rollers for people mysteriously unable to do it.

I saw a lady using her hijab to clean them in Glasgow University library in the 80's!

Lizards for lunch? Crazy tech? Aliens?! Dana Dash: First Girl on the Moon is perfect for the little boffin-to-be in your life

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Happy

Re: STEM

Although there are different parts of mathematics, the word itself is single. Have a look at https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/math-or-maths

Not all words that end in S are plural. Bus, moss and kiss are examples.

Dutch Gateway store was kept udder wraps for centuries until refit dug up computing history

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Linux

Re: "Apple and Dell swallowed up market share outside the US"

Agreed. Apple is only seen to be a dominant force if you are one of their users. For the rest of us, they are an interesting minority.

Their desktop PCs are good for people in very restricted "vertical markets" and users who have little/no experience of Windoze. Their laptops are famously shonky and their phones are account for perhaps 11% of sales globally although higher in the USA and UK.

They are certainly financially impressive and their lawyers have been so successful in the past that I will not do business with them! I don't know about dominant though...

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Pirate

Re: Relegated to the attic...

Isn't that a bit like Trigger's broom?

Sounds similar to the battle axe of Robert the Bruce in Edinburgh Castle...

Someone made an AI that predicted gender from email addresses, usernames. It went about as well as expected

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Just confuse them where possible.

Amazon has little idea of my age or gender.

In the past, I got DVDs to entertain the kids, when daughter went to Uni, I got textbooks for a student nurse and items of equipment she needed - torches to shine in your eyes, weird shaped scissors etc. Our son recently got trainers off it. I also got stuff for my in laws that denote some needs that are probably not in my age range yet.

The only thing they have a good handle on me for it my tasted in reading as I imagine they combine their records with Audible.com and realise that I like science fiction. Can they gauge my age by the fact that many of the authors I prefer are dead?

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Go

Re: What about dogs?

Right now, my dogs at home are listening to Spotify. There is an Alexa "skill" that plays suitable relaxing doggy music.

Reply-All storm flares as email announcing privacy policy puts 500 addresses in the 'To' field, not 'BCC'

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Big Brother

Re: mail client

I know very few people that are aware of Bcc:, even in the IT world.

I know a manager who considers its use to be shady/underhanded. I tried to explain its use in mass mailings but he didn't like the idea of people sending him email but not letting him see who else is getting it. I pointed out that he was already receiving such email but left it at that.

Face masks hamper the spread of coronavirus. Know what else they hamper? Facial-recognition systems (except China's)

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Go

How about

Does it make it worse if the victimsubject wears large sunglasses?

Not-so-paltry towers to float: Vodafone reveals IPO plans for mega European masts biz

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Big Brother

Why?

Why the rush to remove Huawei kit? Certainly make plans but don't actually get down to it until next spring. There is a possibility that the USA might end up with an adult in the White House and this fake security "problem" might go away when the new bod notices just what a bad idea a trade war is!

Bill Gates debunks 'coronavirus vaccine is my 5G mind control microchip implant' conspiracy theory

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WTF?

@jelabarre5j9

I dislike some (most) of his political agenda

Like over 95% of humanity, I am not in/from the USA so I have no idea what you are talking about. He seems educated and does not give the impression of a "right-winger". As the USA doesn't actually have a left wing, are you unhappy that he is not conservative enough?

Privacy Shield binned after EU court rules transatlantic data protection arrangements 'inadequate'

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Black Helicopters

Re: What is the "double standard"?

The EU maybe able to effectively prosecute US companies with an EU presence

And until there is an adult in charge in the white house, every time we do, we will get lies fake news and threats tweetblasted at us for it.

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Holmes

Good

Was anyone here even a fraction surprised?

Does anyone here believe this will not be part of the thrust of downgrading our data security laws?

Cornwall councillor suggests authority paid £2m for Oracle licences that no one used on contract originally worth £4m

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Re: Oracle and SAP should be banned in the public sector

I agree about the time. I remember the "example" of Windows Cement which I had printed out and on my wall.

I think NT was the start of the downfall. They now seem indistinguishable from any other so many other US corporates.

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Holmes

Re: Oracle and SAP should be banned in the public sector

When have they *ever* delivered value for money...?

That is not generally the function of a US corporation. It is supposed to generate "returns". This is why when small US firms grow big, they change from being useful to not - Microsoft and Google are good examples of that.

Cornish drinkers catch a different kind of buzz as pub installs electric fence at bar

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Facepalm

Re: what happens to the drunk

Who can't differentiate between the bar and the urinal?

Reminds me of an army exercise when I was in the OTC some decades ago.

One of our number nipped out and accidentally watered an electric cattle fence he hadn't noticed.

The problem for the rest of us was that we were not allowed to use plain English over the radio. We could tell the "other end" that someone was hurt. They were happy at describing it as a "burn" but were struggling to figure out how to say what had been burnt.

Perhaps it was a prediction of my future employment (in the NHS) but I suggested the 1st Aid shorthand of calling it their 1% and this was deemed OK.

He was back with us the next day, if a little red faced!

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

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Devil

Re: My normal response to Tony Blair

Does anyone have a positive reaction to him - or is it just that I don't know anyone in the Conservative party?

It's not a Windows 10 release without something breaking so here's a troubleshooter for your OneDrive woes

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Meh

My first step

I start by removing as much MS Cloud crudware as possible. Some bits have even been uninstallable. I came across a PowerShell script for enough of the rest. The big question is, will I be able to continue like this? In the long term, probably not and I will need to dump MS.

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

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Happy

Floppy discs around

I remember the psychological effort of getting secretaries weaned off floppies.

"If I save them on this W drive thing, how will I meet them lined up in my floppy disc box?" or

"But other people will be able to read them!" - that's because W stands for workgroups. and

a complete inability to understand that when they got a new PC or moved to a new office, they did not need to back up their stuff and restore it on the new computer.

I think that the thing that eventually won the over was the search functions ability to search for words inside really large numbers of documents across their entire. It was much easier to use back then.

When floppy drives stopped appearing on new PCs, none of them noticed.

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Happy

there's something onyour keyboard

Pick up line.

Hear very recognisable KB buffer overflow noise.

Say "can you remove whatever's on your keyboard please"

User says "my computer's working now. You're amazing!"

Under 2 seconds. I win!

MIT apologizes, permanently pulls offline huge dataset that taught AI systems to use racist, misogynistic slurs

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Boffin

Re: Copyright?

...slightly anonymised...

No but they may aggregate it and I won't care too much.

"There are X million people over the age of 25 with fillings in the UK." and "There were N fatalities from Covid-19 this year."

Examples of that sort of use of aggregated data like that are fine, just not "Mr C. was living in the West midlands in a town with a population of 30,000+ when he developed an STI on 21/03/2013". That could be de-anonymised (If Mr C existed anyway...).

Rental electric scooters to clutter UK street scenes after Department of Transport gives year-long trial the thumbs-up

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Boffin

Re: Outside the UK, electric scooters have long been a hallmark of city living…

... helmets are pretty fucking useless for all the knee and hand injuries...

Helmet requirements discourage use. Take a look at the Netherlands where helmets are not the norm.

One of the reasons helmets are not mandatory for bicycles here is the number of additional car journeys that would cause. Another reason is that they encourage dangerous behaviour as people feel safer when wearing them.

Yes motorcycle helmets and car seat belts do this as well but it was felt that it still worked out safer with them.

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Facepalm

Re: Rental vs privately owned

If I have spent MY money on getting myself a scooter, I am less likely to abandon it in the middle of the pavement. For comparison, I have a bike. Although I have not ridden it for a while, it is chained up in my garage, not randomly thrown away.

If I rent something, I have no further interest in it once the rental is over. If they are "dockless", I may park it at the side of the road but I may be a neat freak. Many others will just abandon it wherever...

After huffing and puffing for years, US senators unveil law to blow the encryption house down with police backdoors

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Alert

Hopefully

The rest of the world will let the USA "lead the way" and watch all the predicted problems arise and our owners will talk to theirs and decide against it.

Laws on police facial recognition aren't tough enough, UK data watchdog barrister tells Court of Appeal

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Big Brother

@mark l 2

I'm afraid that an unacceptable number of people will be content as they will still be able to tell the ethnicity of the subject.

Apple launches incredible features everyone else had more than a year ago – this time for the 'smart home'

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Re: What's the true cost ?

I think we've for Marmosets or something then.

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Alien

"a signed statement"

Just wear a surgical mask and don't pose for any selfies in it.

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Pint

Re: What's the true cost ?

I do not have the whole set of IOT but my Ring Doorbell does talk to Alexa.

This has the interesting benefit of when someone from Just Eat comes round and very quietly taps on my door but does not bother to ring the bell, Alexa tells me that there's someone at the door.

I was curious why some of them could not understand about the doorbell but apparently some of them are scared of technology...

Machine-learning models trained on pre-COVID data are now completely out of whack, says Gartner

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Boffin

Pattern Recognition

Criticising supposed AI as "just pattern recognition" ignores a major fact.

Most human intelligence is pattern recognition. For example, my younger colleagues consider me very good at mental arithmetic. I just know my times tables up to 16 (older Scottish) and so many other patterns that I don't even know they're there.

All the people asking about the "post Covid world" are asking for new patterns. When early humans went to a new place, they were in more danger until they identified the patterns of the area - what certain birds flying in circles meant (vultures?), what particular shadows and noises indicated (predators that might eat them) and so on.

Pattern recognition is intelligence.

Step on it, I've got the police on my hack: Anon swipes, leaks online 269GB of crime intel docs from cops, Feds

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Big Brother

Re: What happened to encryption at rest?

Chris G, just stopping certain types of users from getting in might actually cure a lot of their security problems for a start. It might also cure certain types of misuse as well.

Lets see how current events change US policing. I have my doubts but lets be hopeful. If they get rid of the "bad apples", wins all round. I just won't hold my breath for it!

Samsung combines 5G, AI, drones and cloud in conspiracy ... to ease network maintenance costs

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Black Helicopters

Will the drone be safe?

Perhaps the stunningly stupid people that believe in these conspiracy theories will get anti-drone technology. You know the sort of thing, a microwave blaster that will cause the drone to shutdown (after frying the users spuds first)?

Sounds like a great idea. I want one of these drones.

Belief in 5G conspiracy theories goes hand-in-hand with small explosions of rage, paranoia and violence, researchers claim

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Facepalm

Something else to consider.

Some of these fantasists are excellent examples of the Dunning Kruger effect.

They are so uninformed that they don't realise they are uninformed. They are so stupid they think they're smart.

Hey NYPD, when you're done tear-gassing and running over protesters, can you tell us about your spy gear?

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Big Brother

Re: Don't bring politics here

You remind me of some people from the USA I heard who only watched FOX news "as it was unbiased".

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Boffin

Re: Liar, she hit a traffic light

Horses have been used for many years for crowd control

Winston Churchill used them on peaceful protesters when he was home secretary - long before he was prime minister.

https://thenorwichradical.com/2018/04/06/decolonise-wales-i/

I picked that one because it cam up first in Google but he sis it in various parts of the UK. My granny in Fife loathed him as did most of her generation there.

IR35 tax reforms for UK freelancers glide through committee stage: D-Day set for 6 April 2021

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Big Brother

Stop calling therm reforms.

They are no such thing.

IR 35 is a fairly standard government process better described as deliberate damage.

If you have to use the word, try putting it in inverted commas - "reforms".

By emptying offices, coronavirus has hastened the paperless office

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Pint

Re: Not here

We have people who work at home some days and come to work on others.

A few years ago, we set up network printing only and removed all the status symbols little printers from "important" peoples desks. You send your print job, walk up to any printer and swipe your ID card over it and it prints your item. It holds it for 24 hours and if you don't print it, it deletes it from the queue.

People do all the printing they want on the last day working from home and print it 1st thing on their day here. I hope some of them just look at the volume of stuff they print and reconsider.

Hey is trying a new take on email – but maker complains of 'outrageous' demands after Apple rejects iOS app

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Linux

This reminds me why

I stopped doing any business with apple years ago.

Why? Because their business model involved being the ONLY player on the block. If anyone looked like a competitor, they were either sued out of existence or copied and rendered bankrupt.

"But lots of others do the same!" This was almost the only example of where Apple led the way. The same is done by everyone from Microsoft to Oracle but Apple showed them how. Microsoft developed the trend of buying up and closing down (I think there's a Simpsons episode) but it took the lead from Jobs.

Good to see a company returning to its roots...

If you're despairing at staff sharing admin passwords, look on the bright side. That's CIA-grade security

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Meh

Re: Numpties, the lot of 'em.

As a child, I spent time in a country whose name translates to "Socialist Peoples XXXXXX Arab Republic". In the best tradition, the only true(ish) word was the one that I have crossed out.

The rest of us are not too great at this either. How united is the USA or the UK for example?

Only true boffins will be able to grasp Blighty's new legal definitions of the humble metre and kilogram

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Boffin

Me too

I finished school in 1978. When I started college, one of the first lectures was to teach us the "imperial system" as knowing little about it was the norm.

I seem to remember laughter and incredulity that this supposed system expected us to take it seriously. The only bits I remember are barleycorn(0), inch, hand(1), foot yard, chain(2) and mile.

(0) Because it is funny

(1) My grandfather kept ponies and this is one 9th of a yard

(2) Length of a cricket pitch

The only one of those I remember being of any use was the fact that there were 63,360 inches in a mile. Why? Ordinance survey maps before they went to a less insane scale of 1 to 50,000!

No. If your school had any intention of turning out useful members of society, it made perfect sense not to fill your head with a load of mediaeval junk. If, on the other hand, you wanted to avoid the 20th century and later, then imperial measures are for you! Please hand in your phone, TV, computer, any clothing with man made fabrics to the time guardian as you leave on your horse and buggy.

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FAIL

Spelling

You are spelling metre correctly, why are you showing "kilogram" instead of kilogramme?

We are not in the USA (yet). Please spell it correctly.

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

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Facepalm

Re: what about a channel for...

Could be a very "relaxing" channel!

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