* Posts by davcefai

186 posts • joined 21 May 2007


Finally, a wafer-thin server... Only a tiny little thin one. Oh all right. Just the one...


Yes, but UPSs have always had their own rules.

80-characters-per-line limits should be terminal, says Linux kernel chief Linus Torvalds



As usual Linus makes a lot of sense. However the lack of colour in the reply makes it a little disappointing :-)

Not going Huawei just yet: UK ministers reportedly rethinking pledge to kick Chinese firm out of telco networks by 2023


Re: shambles.gov.uk/2020-05-27#huawei

This reminds me of the Falklands war. The UK did not have a suitable rocket so it bought Exocets from France. (I think there may have been British investment there too). The Argentinians also bought Exocets. Some people made/saved lots of money by "outsourcing" vital industries. Others were killed by the consequences.

At least at the moment we can choose Chinese or American kit. The Americans can probably not compete on the current playing field want want to be sole suppliers to the world.

Microsoft doc formats are the bane of office suites on Linux, SoftMaker's Office 2021 beta may have a solution


Re: Trust Office

I used to _love_ sending emails "Please resend in a more acceptable format" to a company that adopted every new iteration of MS Office the day it was released.

Our company was, OTOH, very slow at adopting the new versions.

From attacked engineers to a crypto-loving preacher with a questionable CV: Yep, it's still very much 5G silly season


It can get worse!

Malta has a growing anti-5G movement. Big to-do with photos of new masts. The sad thing is:

1. There are no 5G masts yet in Malta.

2. None of the providers have even applied for a licence yet.

Never underestimate the power of stupidity. Remember that "MRI" was initially called "NMR" - Nuclear Magnetic Resonance- but people were frightened of the "Nuclear" bit.

Linux clockpocalypse in 2038 is looming and there's no 'serious plan'


Re: Too late!

HP95 palmtop.

RIP Freeman Dyson: The super-boffin who applied his mathematical brain to nuclear magic, quantum physics, space travel, and more



Please don't forget the concept of the Dyson Sphere and the Ringworld which has given so many of us so many hours of fun and fascination.

At last, the fix no one asked for: Portable home directories merged into systemd


Re: Finally!

Did you still need an incentive? When systemd was released on us, I felt that I was back in the Windows days! And it looks like it can only get worse. Why can't Poettering go away and write his own OS, leaving us to the stability we worked so hard to achieve?

Linux 5.3 kernel bundles new, cuddlier, swear-free Torvalds with AMD Radeon Navi graphics support



I remember when he was foisting pulseaudio on us. His standard reply to bug reports was that it would get better soon. Frankly I cannot understand how Poettering has been allowed to screw up Linux with systemd. It goes against the basic philosophy of ONE tool doing ONE thing very well.

Which is why I dropped Debian for Devuan.

That lithium-ion battery in your phone or car? It has just won three chemists the Nobel Prize


Re: Exploiting science

That's a bit of a leap. Do we know that he would rather have retired? I know of hale and hearty people who retired and then rapidly went downwards.

The mod firing squad: Stack Exchange embroiled in 'he said, she said, they said' row


Re: Is this just an English thing ?

Is it a British English thing or is it a US "English" thing?

Another rewrite for 737 Max software as cosmic bit-flipping tests glitch out systems – report


Reckless Endangerment

Isn't this cockup a candidate for a prosecution for reckless endangerment?

And we're back live with the state of the smartphone market in 2019. Any hope? Yeah, nah


What bothers me is the tacit assumption that WE MUST HAVE GROWTH. Surely any industry must realise that there is a limit to growth.

Profits cannot keep soaring. Isn't it time to plan for a "flat line" economy?

He's coming home, he's coming... Hutchins' coming home: British Wannacry killer held in US on malware dev rap set free by judge


Re: Excellent news, my best wishes for his future BUT...

It may well depend on the judge/jury you get but personally I would be biased against somebody who has contributed so much to overpopulation.

Rise of the Machines hair-raiser: The day IBM's Dot Matrix turned



Lusers are lusers everywhere. A few years ago we were building a new production facility. When it came to cladding the front we had to close off the road leading to the Marketing Dept. So we assigned new parking spaces, dotted the area with "Keep Out" posters and we posted maps and instructions on how to walk to Marketing via a different route

Next day 4 girls from Marketing - cookie cut types with long straight hair and sub-par IQs - came to complain that they had torn their tights climbing over the barriers in the road.

Ex-Microsoft dev used test account to swipe $10m in tech giant's own store credits, live life of luxury, Feds allege



"Microsoft's online store uses a form of device fingerprinting called a Fuzzy Device ID. Investigators, it's claimed, linked a specific device identifier to accounts associated with Kvashuk."

So they spy on you even from the store. Isn't this a breach of privacy?

Boffins find asteroid with the shortest solar year of any space rock in our Solar System


Ah, the old days/

“You don't find kilometre-size asteroids very often these days,"

They don't make them like they used to.

'Bulls%^t! Complete bull$h*t!' Reset the clock on the last time woke Linus Torvalds exploded at a Linux kernel dev

Thumb Up

Linus is the man who keeps the project going. A brilliant coder but also a brilliant cat-herder. What other OS progressed as fast and as well as Linux?

So he gets pissed off at some people. So what? His system(s) work and the OS keeps going strong.

Linus doesn't need to write code. He does need to manage it. And he does, in a way most managers can envy.

Mr Torvalds, in case you get to read this, consider your hand shaken.

WikiLeaks boss Assange acted as a foreign spy, Uncle Sam exclaims in fresh rap sheet


Assange's REAL 'crime' is embarrassing politicians. Personally I love watching politicians squirm.

I believe a few years ago he was a hero. Irrespective of any personal habits or characteristics he has done the world a favour.

Apple hardware priced so high that no one wants to buy it? It's 1983 all over again


As a potential customer - the software package they were selling on it was pretty good - the last 2 words were probably thought but never uttered.

Funny how suppliers don't like to risk offending customers!


The Lisa had a wonderful bug. It was said that you could drop the computer icon into the wastebasket, requiring a hard reset.

I tried this during an exhibition but found my wrist firmly clamped by the demonstrator who said something like "Oh no you don't......sir."

Python joins movement to dump 'offensive' master, slave terms


Upset a different bunch of people.

How about "Dom" and "Sub"?

make all relocate... Linux kernel dev summit shifts to Scotland – to fit Torvald's holiday plans


He's done a fantastic job, so why not?

However I confess to feeling uneasy about when he retires. OTOH I'm much older than he is so I'll be past caring. I just hope that Poettering doesn't complete the job of destroying Linux.

It may be poor man's Photoshop, but GIMP casts a Long Shadow with latest update


Re: Forget the geeky stuff, sort out the user experience.

The UI used to be "one of a kind" where you could spend more time looking for a function than using it. The default UI is now much more conventional. Frankly I was not aware that there is another one and will spend some time trying to find it.

After PSP went past v9 GIMP became my default photo app, especially as I could then use it on both Windows (at work) and Linux (at home).

Meet the real spin doctors: Scientists tell H2O to chill out so they can separate isomers


I suspect that this only holds true at the very low temperatures quoted in the article as the hydrogen atoms should be able to rotate freely as soon as some energy is available.

MY GOD, IT'S FULL OF CARS: SpaceX parks a Tesla in orbit (just don't mention the barge)


Re: Great Headline, Register

The short story was first. The book you describe is "The Lost Worlds of 2001". As far as I remember the screenplay and book were written together. Certainly the film is very faithful to the book.

And we return to Munich's migration back to Windows – it's going to cost what now?! €100m!


There is also a non-technical reason for this retrogressive step. One that I have experienced myself.

Some people consider themselves too important to use "free" (=, in their minds, "cheap") software.

Because of this what was going to be a well managed transition from MS Office to OpenOffice, with Sun's assistance, ended up in disaster. Incidentally, unless things have changed a lot since I retired, it is NOT feasible to run MS Office and Open or Libre Office together for any long time.

HMS Queen Elizabeth has sprung a leak and everyone's all a-tizzy


I've just looked at a link to the Sun. Sad to think how many trees died to supply this drivel.


Seals leak. Fact of life. Usually tightening (compressing the packing further) helps. Otherwise replace the packing. Big deal. The really bad case would be a roughness in the shaft - it would need re-machining. *That* would justify the fuss being made. I've had expert craftsmen have problems in getting packing exactly right and this was on shafts maybe 3" dia max.

Packing starts to leak *after* some use. That's probably one of the reasons the navy do sea trials. :-)

I can't call this a storm in a teacup because the ship is too big to fit in a teacup.

Lauri Love appeal: 'If he's dead, no victim's going to get anything'



One day, one hopes, the UK will stop being bullied by the US. (I am not a national of either country).

As I understand it the law about extraditions works in favour of the US. The Brits cannot get _their_ naughty boys back from the US.

Love is English, sat at his computer in England and was arrested in England. So if guilty he is guilty of an offence in England, not the land of the cholesterol-laden fast foods. Do we even know that the computers he hacked are physically located in the US?

Linus Torvalds 'sorry' for swearing, blames popularity of Linux itself


All is well, really.

Linus pioneered not only a new OS but also new ways of developing and distributing it.

"release early and often" was the mantra in the good old days. Users found the bugs and they were fixed - very quickly. If someone cannot cope with this they should wait to upgrade until other hardier souls, or people not running mission critical systems, found the bugs.

Linux has been a dynamic and vigorous ecosystem. Linus found exactly the right formula to manage it. If the genes that made this possible are linked to others like sweariness then "ce la vie". Deal with it. Don't try to put ridiculous code into the system, and just grin and say sorry if you inadvertently do so.

Which makes one wonder how in hell we got stuck with pulseaudio and systemd! :-)

Dick move: Navy flyboy flings firmament phallus for flabbergasted folk



It's amazing really that such a familiar object should cause such a furore. To quote from an alleged medical lecture, the object in question is found on approximately half the population and spends a great deal of its time inside the other half!

OK, we admit it. Under the hood, the iPhone X is a feat of engineering


Re: Feat of engineering

And then you can lose it.

ARM chip OG Steve Furber: Turing missed the mark on human intelligence


Number of cores

Not all of the brain is concerned with reasoning. A goodly portion is "engine management" of the body. Without entering the other arguments in this thread I would venture that, based on the author's calculations, they will end up with a "brain" bigger than a human's.

Wanna get started with practical AI? Check out this chap's Rubik's Cube solving neural-net code


Starting Out

Many of these posts could be slightly modified and used in explaining why

print "hello world"

is a useless exercise.

Don't we have to start somewhere?

F-35 firmware patches to be rolled out 'like iPhone updates'


Re: Samsung TV software update comes to mind

Man, are you an optimimist!

Foxit PDF Reader is well and truly foxed up, but vendor won't patch



Can't beat Okular under KDE on Debian.

Clear August 21 in your diary: It's a total solar eclipse for the smart



This phenomenon will be due to a newly hatched turtle flying over the Disc and temporarily occluding the sun.

Didn't anybody pay attention in class? :-)

iRobot just banked a fat profit. And it knows how to make more: Sharing maps of your homes


I suppose that the next step could well be that if you drop your keys it will photograph them and send the photo off for making copies..

Linus Torvalds may have damned systemd with faint praise



A well placed tantrum can be more effective than a cold sarcastic statement. Linus seems to know this and uses it effectively.


I look forward to his post when systemd *really* gets his goat.

Julian Assange wins at hide-and-seek game against Sweden



I love watching politicians squirm. Assange has provided me with entertainment.

On a more serious note:

No matter what anybody thinks of him as a person, he has rendered the world a service. Politicians preach "open government". Wikileaks has helped to achieve some of it.

Nikon snaps at Dutch, German rivals: You stole our chip etch lens tech!


What goes round...

Many years ago it was alleged that Nikon cloned the Leica camera and then used it as a base to develop the SLR camera, at which point Leitz stole it back.

I recall a case where a Japanese company - forget which - cloned an IBM chip, including a mistake which was "fenced off" from the rest of the circuit. Apparently they could not figure out how it worked so they just copied the lot.

Those were the "wild west" days. Today they use lawyers. Is it just me or was it more fun in those days? (For the bystanders anyway) :-)

Consumers go off PCs as global shipments continue their decline


Reality Check

Did anybody really think that sales would keep increasing ad infinitum?

Unlike in the early days we all now have more power in the boxes than we need so where's the incentive to upgrade?

Vinyl, filofaxes – why not us too, pleads Nokia


I miss my 3310. I hung on to it for as long as possible but when my last HP-95 palmtop gave up the ghost (they were >20yrs old and hand-me-downs) I had to move to a smart phone to try to achieve a similar functionality.

After all a phone is to make phone calls with. And dropping it into the water or getting it wet on a boat only meant paying €35 for a new one. Today losing a smartphone can be a major tragedy and backing up the data is a total pain.

Take that, creationists: Boffins witness birth of new species in the lab


No, nothing will convince them except possibly their $DEITY chucking a stone tablet down a mountain.

Let's face it, how can they stand the idea of being "descended from a monkey"?

Icelandic Pirate Party asked to form government


Re: Enquiring minds want to know..

There was a short story with this theme. Wife kills hubbie with a frozen leg of lamb, then cooks it. She then offers it to the detectives who unwittingly eat the murder weapon!

Not sure of the author, maybe Roald Dahl.

3,500 Verizon call center workers can't hear you now


Making Money.

"realign our real estate portfolio "

Does this mean "we can make a lot of money of selling the sites"?

McDonald's sues Italian city for $20m after being burger-blocked


Good on the Italians. 35 years on I can still remember my bitter disappointment when I discovered that a Danish smorrebrod (open sandwich) restaurant in the Copenhagen Town Square had become a Burger King "outlet".

Dirty COW explained: Get a moooo-ve on and patch Linux root hole



Amazing, the lengths some people will go to in order to diss Open-Source!

So Linus made a mistake (sort of). He admitted it, fixed it and moved on. MS have had known bugs running for years. I remember one where I found 6000+ questions about it on the web dating back 7 years. I forget the details but it affected data transfer, via SQL Server, between machines.

The root solution is simple. Don't use Linux, then complain about what you are using - there will ALWAYS be something to complain about. The difference is that, in open-source, the discussions are open and frank.

Thank you for Linux, Linus.



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