* Posts by Basic

131 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Feb 2010


If you can read this, your Windows 10 2004 PC really is connected to the internet no matter what the OS claims


Re: Every cloud has a silver lining

But they spakle and shimmer so prettily...

Microsoft menaced with GDPR mega-fines in Europe for 'large scale and covert' gathering of people's info via Office


Re: What about Windows 10 that Office is sitting on?

The GDPR Explicitly calls out that you're not allowed to make access to a service contingent on granting consent to have your data processed, unless it's an essential part of providing the service

Eg not ads, telemetry, etc... Just the core functionality.

Rights groups challenge UK cops over refusal to hand over info on IMSI catchers


You assume they're only using them to target criminals. Considering how often we've seen abuses of power, I'm struggling to understand what are you basing that assumption on?

FCC Commissioner blasts new TV standard as a 'household tax'


They're just desperate

... to hold on to their model of locked-in viewers ad content.

It won't take long before people realise you can get any TV once and plug in a PC in a set-top form-factor to get all the TV you want with no more forced upgrades, artificial limitations or ridiculous charges to achieve the same quality people on the internet get for free.

Adblock again beats publishers' Adblock-blocking attempts


It's my device, I paid for it. I also paid for a network service to deliver data to me and the electricity to run the device. I then use my device to request specific data from the internet. The entire model of web browsing is based on a client requesting something and a server sending it.

I ask for a webpage and receive it. The page has links to images, so I ask for them and receive them. If I choose not to ask for the adverts, that's my choice. I never signed a contract to say I have to download garbage I don't want.

All I need to do is never request it. Publishers have no say over what I request (and should never do so... My device, bandwidth, etc).

Where the publisher has a choice is that they can either serve me content or not. If the publisher doesn't want to send me data, there's nothing I can do to force them. That's their call. They can tell in advance if I'm using an adblocker and make a decision. They can also choose to offer services that are so good, I either put up with the ads or pay a fee to use them.

Browsing is currently completely consensual on both sides and should remain so.

Personally, I gladly pass up on some publishers in exchange for not having to endure 100+ tracking beacons, profiling cookies, drive-by downloads, etc... Let alone the fact that the ads themselves are annoying to begin with (and are frequently used to install malware).

Oh and by the way, I didn't see any of the publishers rushing to give me any cash when they were making money from profiling my browsing habits (without my knowledge or consent) to line their own pockets.

How to confuse a Euro-cop: Survey reveals the crypto they love to hate


Then you're an example of everything I loathe and can't wait until someone drags you off to return the favour.


Re: Encryption will only work as intended until everybody is using it all the time

Only if you have a cute assistant. Steganography on the other hand may well be useful ;)

Robot solves Rubik's Cubes in 637 milliseconds


"large number of unanticipated sensors"

If you have unanticipated sensors, something is very far wrong...

Man dies after UK police Taser shooting


The IPCC are involved?

Without knowing anything else, we can reliably say it will be all be ruled above-board and acceptable, with no further action required.

Frankly, I wouldn't trust the IPCC to tell me whether the sun is shining.

UK IT consultant subject to insane sex ban order mounts legal challenge


Re: "He was found not guilty, therefore he is innocent"

Problemw ith that approach is that there's no evidence required, nothing objective at all really.

The police could claim tomorrow that lots of anarchists recently had been posting on El Reg, thus all register readers should be monitored more closely as they're "on the road" to being anarchists.

You could make an argument that is as valid for almost any person in the country.

The bottom line is "Innocent until proven guilty". If you havne't been proven guilty of a crime, the state has _no_ right to interfere in your life.

You really do want to use biometrics for payments, beam banks


Re: They say they want to use what they know about

"before you remotely deactivate it via Find My iPhone or similar."

That's the problem.. What are you going to do? Grow new fingerprints? Once your fingerprint is compromised, it's useless forever.

Adjustments will be needed to manage the Macs piling up in your business


Wasted cycles

It's amazing how much effort you need to waste on inconsistent, feature-poor tools.

I've been fairly open to the idea of adding Macs to our domain but since I've started investigating, I'm not going to bother. I can't even buy a server that's rack mountable unless I want hardware from 2009 that not guaranteed to be supported in future.

Oh and good luck trying to use a Mac Mini - have you seen what's involved in swapping a HDD, let alone getting it to RAID or similar?

It's a total farce

Light the torches! NSA's BFF Senator Feinstein calls for e-book burning


The Anarchists Cookbook?

Anyone here not read it already? Hell, it was one of the first things I used a modem for.

HOT HOVERSHIP-ON-HOVERSHIP ACTION: SpaceX ready for barge boing


It's about as close as you can get to the equator while in the USA and is surrounded by water for those "no cigar" moments...

Renewable energy 'simply won't work': Top Google engineers


"I'm sure saying this will probably prove unpopular."

Yes... Not because the goal is bad, but because you clearly have no idea of the numbers involved.

Covering a factory and ancillary sheds in PV would do nothing significant to the external energy requirements.

Yes, a modest home can become (almost) self sufficient after the installation of PV/Geothermal, but the energy cost to produce them, ship them to the home and install them is considerable.

The amount of energy used by industrial processes is many orders of magnitude higher than a residential property and makes up a significant proportion of the global energy usage.

Look at construction in the UK alone... More than 400 million tonnes of materials get delivered to site each year. Consider what that costs in terms of energy consumption!

The bottom line is that PV is a drop in the ocean and always will be unless we give up our current lifestyle and regress to the middle ages. Since it's unlikely that the vast majority of the population would ever accept that as an answer, it's time to start investing more in Nuclear.


Re: Hairshirt, Sackcloth and Ashes

"the costs to building a single plant are huge"... So is the cost of pointless wind farms and the sheer volume of resources wasted on renewables which have no realistic chance of even breaking even!


Re: Then we're fucked

Why "haul" it anywhere? Set up a plant there that converts the gas into something more easily transported / more dense energy, then shoot that back at Earth. Yes, you're going to need a considerable delta v but then, you've got Jupiter as an energy source.

If you can't use the resources of an entire gas giant to send something to Earth, you don't deserve the title of Engineer.

Your move, sucker! Microsoft tests cloud gaming system that cuts through network lag


Re: Old News

Yep, just look up LERP for any source-based game like CS:S, Left4Dead2, etc... they all do this.

Path runs screaming from privacy snafu



At least you have explicitly to allow it....

NSA constructs hardened Android, unleashes it on world

Thumb Up


'nuff said

Google's Siri-a-like to be named 'Majel' after Trek actress



Her voice was fantastic for the computer - she had just the right balance.

Looks like it'll have to be Ellen McLain (GLaDOS)

Blighty promised £43m prang-predicting supercomputer


Surely the opposite?

Surely if you design the software to take advantage of the architecture, the opposite is true - use queues and workers for passing around work units, store your input/results in blob storage, etc...

Then, even if an entire data centre goes down, your app should just be able to spin up, re-process any units that were interrupted by the meteor hit, and continue.

You should also be able to handle the equivalent of cross-thread communication between servers using higher-level comms (although the performance hit _may_ be significant if there's lots of signalling)

The only way I can see cloud making it worse is if the applications are trying to do everything in memory in a single run - in which case an individual server is just as likely to be hit my a meteor / suffer catastrophic failure as any one node in the cloud

Carrier IQ VP: App on millions of phones not a privacy risk


You can take anything to extremes

And it never helps.

Stop trolling and drink some beer instead

Quantum computing comes closer as diamonds get spooky

Thumb Up

Very good

Wasn't expecting that - nice one

Google will ignore your Wi-Fi router ... if you rename it


Maybe it's just me

But I think sticking _nomap on the end just to keep Google out is messy. Why should I have to use an irritating (case-sensitive?) naming convention on my gear just to tell Google to f*ck off?

This is a kludge, no more, no less - and a shoddy one at that.

iOS upgrade swells iPhone battery-suckage grief



You're using logic in a "Flame Apple" thread. Nothing good will come of it.

Now, where's my blowtorch...


Daisy, Daisy

'nuf said


I see your point but...

I can see your point and understand that it's a difficult situation but the bottom line is that Apple must comply with the law. If that means that local vendors are disadvantaged because apple prices the product higher to include the extended warranty, that's a problem between the vendors and the law makers.

Apple can't just decide to ignore a law simply because it's inconvenient.

Deep-sea squid go from transparent to dark as fast as a Kindle

Thumb Up


She mentions it before you see the spelling and I assumed it was "Banksy" immediately.


I want a Squid Plus

With more memory and the ability to time-shift :D

PSN hack triggers lawsuit



Hmmmmm someone opens a brand new user account to post pro-Sony comments. Not in the slightest bit dodgy.

I wonder if the Moderatrix would be kind enough to check if the account used has an IP address inside Sony - Sarah?

Google location tracking can invade privacy, hackers say


Y'know it really pisses me off...

...when stuff like this happens - I dislike Apple products for a number of reasons and have always promoted Android to friends/family.

How am I supposed to have a good old self-righteous Apple-bash when Android turns around and does this?

I just know that one day I'm going to end up having to compile some odd linux distro and install it on my smartphone so it does what it's supposed to do and ONLY what it' supposed to do. It really is very depressing.

"Here I am, brain the size of a planet and you want me to get my coat"

No, iPhone location tracking isn't harmless and here's why


A title

I can't comment on the US but I know that in the UK, although it's possible to find out about specific towers through planning permission records, etc. the overall network coverage "map" quite closely guarded. The best that has been revealed so far is available here: http://licensing.ofcom.org.uk/binaries/spectrum/mobile-wireless-broadband/cellular/coverage_maps.pdf and you'll note the exceedingly low resolution.

There have been a number of legal and Freedom of Information Act requests to get more detail but they're all been rebuffed/delayed indefinitely/etc.

Fukushima update: No chance cooling fuel can breach vessels


@AC 14:35 LMFAO

>> >> I wonder what Lewis Page's credentials are - is he employed by the nucelar lobby?

>> He can type Nuclear, and doesn't get "there" and their" confused. What are your "credentials?"

You owe me a new keyboard! I wonder, is the OP actually George Bush?



"All reports indicate the situation is getting worse, and is very serious"

Really? Would that be reports from competent scientists or from news agencies that make money by having "exciting" headlines?

I don't mean to belittle the risks of nuclear power but frankly, I think the situation has been handled remarkably well - Added to which, compare the current risks from radiation (which I understand as being minimal from my own reading) with the other effects on the area and really nuclear power is by far the smallest problem they're facing

I admit I have no knowledge beyond a degree in Physics (Different area) but really this does seem to be over-hyped.

Of course, we'll find out over the next few years who is right. I sincerely hope it's me for obvious reasons.

Apple handcuffs 'open' web apps on iPhone home screen


I am an apple hater

I'm an apple hater - I hate the closed approach and a lot of other business practices but in this case, it really does seem to boil down to

The browser launched from the home screen AND OTHER APPS doesn't have all the speed advantages of the native browser

Sounds very bug-like to me - either the actions kick of a slightly different browser UI or something similar - maybe it's a sandboxing issue.

If it doesn't get fixed, I'll be near the front of those booing Apple's dev team - but even I'm having trouble getting worked up over what seems like a simple bug.

Firefox bloke blasts Microsoft IE 9 hardware acceleration claims

Gates Horns

The title is required, and must contain letters and/or digits.

"While on the subject - wouldn't it be nice if there was ONE rendering engine that all browser manufacturers used and built their bells n whistles around? Or is that just me?"

Not in this lifetime. We just aren't that lucky

O2 tries to explain its new prudish nature


Not really

They do for contact, they don't for payg - Surely you watch enough TV to know that if you want to make a call that Jack Bauer can't use to identify you, you need to buy a PAYG phone using cash (Ideally from a shop without CCTV) and then use a voice scrambler. Of course, this all falls down if you actually use the phone on CCTV or if somebody types "Run Identify Caller Hack" into a special Gov't search engine.

Sorry, it's been one of those days...

Android malware attacks show perils of Google openness


Damn You

I'm pretty stoically pro-android (to be more precise, I'm Anti-apple and a bit "meh" re: WinPhone7)

That said, much as I'd like to disagree, those are all very valid points and I congratulate you for a sensible, balanced comment.

Perhaps the real compromise would be: Start vetting the app store but leave the "Can install from untrusted source option". That way, if I want to go and install Dodgyware(TM), I can do so - but only after I've made an explicit decision to accept risk.

I also feel compelled to point out that even though a vetting process improves security, it doesn't guarantee it - so I think all the app stores (Android/Apple/WP7) are giving a false sense of security to greater or lesser degrees

Death by 30% cut: Apple app tax must change


Epic Fail

"It turns out that processing payments is a hard problem to solve"

Seriously? How many of us have implemented payment gateways? I'm assuming we all hate the PayPal API (aka Phase 1 and I use the term API generously). But Seriously, it's "hard" to have a DB table for User_Id, App_Id, PaymentAmount ?

I recently spent a day at DDD9 and MS was trying to convince us of the benefits offered by their Win Phone 7 marketplace - They utterly failed.

If they provide a service, I agree they should be paid, but 30% for running some automated tests and writing an interface for a payment gateway is a joke.

Mozilla: 'Internet Explorer 9 is not a modern browser'


So near and yet so far...

"it is common knowledge within the professional web development community that production sites are typically built to conform to specs that are at least several years old"

You're quite right but I think you also miss an important point - I've only just managed to give IE6 the finger and it will be years before I can rely on features being implemented in the latest browsers available today - But in 5 years time, we'll be having this same conversation - I'll finally be thinking about kicking that god-awful IE8 support. Meanwhile, FF 7, Chrome 5 and IE 11 will be out - And yet again IE will be behind the pack.

It's not that I want to use these features today in professional sites, it's that I want an end to the continual headache that is Microsoft Internet explorer. IE has caused me more wasted hours, bug reports, hacks, code smells and shoddy fixes than any 3 other browsers combined - And as a company it has cost thousands upon thousands of man hours to support Redmond's latest steaming pile of shite (Don't even get me started on backwards compatability modes - ie8 in backcompat doesn't render exactly the same way as ie7, etc. - so I actually have to support 6, 7 pretending to be 6, 7, 8 pretending to be 7, 8 and now 9 and all its quirks)

I don't think there's any doubt amongst professional web developers - IE sucks and has held the web back for years. I feel perfectly justified in complaining about MS (I have to add, I love their development tools, I love Windows 7 and quite a few other products - It' just the IE team I want to drag behind the shed and slaughter)

Thumb Up


It's depressing how accurate this observation is - Then again, I had someone say to me the other day "You'll know the answer to this... Who actually owns the internet?"

Sometimes I despair and wish evolution would hurry up

Thumb Down

Missing the point?

I agree that once you spend hours tailoring a standards-compliant site to work with IE, IE performs okay - The problem is, some team of developers has wasted days of development time to make sure that it works as well in IE as other browsers.

That doesn't make IE just as good - It just means the site in question has a good dev team. Unfortuntely, users take this as evidence IE is just as good as other browsers

Google, MS, Mozilla: Three 'Do Not Tracks' to woo them all


Fixed that for you

"Advertisements are a necessary evil in the Web ecosystem"

I know they have to be there to support sites but any suggestion that advertisers want anything less than every single byte of data they can get is a lie - I don't like it but I can understand why it's the case.

China announces Skype ban to protect telco revenues

Thumb Up

Facebook is important

Facebook is important - Just think, if it went, all those users would turn up elsewhere. Think of it as the bilge tanks of the internet

UN defends human right to WikiLeaked info



"Mensa Candidate"

Emphasiss on candidate

MP wants age verification for net smut


I think I've heard this tune before

"We already successfully regulate British TV channels, cinema screens, high street hoardings and newsagent shelves to stop children seeing inappropriate images and mobile phone companies are able to restrict access to adult material so why should the internet be any different?"

If you don't know the answer to that, you're a moron - seriously. there's a really quick and simple answer - EVERYONE is a content publisher not just certain companies and although you may control the TV Aerial in this analogy, you've got billions of stations broadcasting signals - some legit, some not. Good luck working out how to leave the good stuff and exclude the bad stuff

For the record, the average 12 year old could've explained it to you.

Sex abuse fax leak costs council £100k



Because faxing it to the RIGHT number would've been so much more secure - It's such cutting-edge and secure technology there's no WAY it could've been intercepted.

HP pays off investigators


So that's okay then

Break the law as much as you like - as long as you can pay enough, you won't actually be prosecuted. What a way to run a railroad

Apple threatens Java with death on the Mac



I don't use Macs and have no real stake here but I believe the point Trev was making is that asking his end-users to download and install anything (let alone compile stuff) is going to result in a lot more issues around end-user support.

Do you think the average Mac user (the non-techie type) would understand this:


Due to bugs in 10.4's compiler, building the sources currently requires a Mac OS X 10.5 machine.

OpenMotif is the only required dependency. I installed OpenMotif using MacPorts -- if you install it using Fink, or manually, you must modify the ALT_MOTIF_DIR build setting.

The following additional make options are available:

* BSD_OVERRIDE_ARCH: Set to amd64 to build the 64-bit JVM

* DARWIN_SDK: Set to target a specific Mac OS X SDK

To target Tiger, set the MACOSX_DEPLOYMENT_TARGET environmental variable to "10.4", and pass DARWIN_SDK=/Developer/SDKs/MacOSX10.4u.sdk as a make flag.


I can't see how he's wrong - Esp. considering a lot of Mac users do pick the platform because they don't /have/ to know about that sort of stuff. If they wanted to play with binaries and compilers, they would've picked Linux :)