* Posts by westlake

159 publicly visible posts • joined 20 Apr 2010


Linux command line mistake 'nukes web boss'S biz'


Fake? Yeah, but the story pretty much sums up why ordinary users are absolutely terrified of the command line.

Microsoft will rest its jackboot on Windows 7, 8.1's throat on new Intel CPUs in 2018 – not 2017



Mainstream support for Win 7 ended in January of last year.

Win 7 will run "as is" on Skylake and beyond but won't be getting support for the advanced features of Skylake and beyond --- and this comes as a surprise to the geek because?

In 25 years, Linux has been unable to claim more than a bare 1% share of the desktop. The decline of the desktop market as whole isn't helping.

Win 10 is a purely commercial OS without the faintest taint of ideological purity or political correctness, running programs and drivers distributed under any terms you could name without a whisper of protest.

Thank god.

I have five subscription services installed, perhaps 50 or so core FOSS apps and utilities, 250 MSDOS/Windows games, shareware apps like mIRC, and another 50 or so Windows productivity and hobbyist apps acquired from other sources ----

including a small but growing number of "Universal" apps from the Windows store. It all "just works" and I have long since made my peace with user agents like Cortana.

The geek vastly underestimates the range and depth of the program library available for Windows, and also the convenience and utility of the Windows OS itself.

Microsoft gets into the advanced intrusion sniffer game – but only for Windows 10


Reading comprehension, D-.

To all the geeks whining about this being a subscription service:

This is product for the enterprise market --- which is accustomed to paying for services and support at this level no matter what OS they are using.

Linux Mint hacked: Malware-infected ISOs linked from official site


In your dreams.

"It's becoming a viable target, possibly because people have switched thanks to Microsoft aggressively pushing Win10."

In round numbers, Win 10 has a 12% share of the desktop, and Linux 2%. Desktop Operating System Market Share In 25 years Linux as a desktop client has gained almost no traction whatever.

TTIP: A locked room, no internet access, two hours, 300 pages and lots of typos


Term of office.

>>the Obama Administration recently accepted that it was probable that the deal will not be signed before the current president leaves office in November<<

President Obama's term office ends January 20, 2017.


Confirmed: How to stop Windows 10 forcing itself onto PCs – your essential guide


Facing reality.

Net Applications shows Windows 10 approaching 10x the market share of Linux, all flavors. Desktop Operating System Market Share - Operating System Versions.

Net Applications builds its stats by looking at hits to about 40,000 websites that draw a very large and diverse audience. CNN. Disney. Kraft Foods, and so on. Their numbers won't tell you much about the geek elite but should tell you which way the masses are headed.

Court to Wikimedia: Your NSA spying evidence is inadmissable, so you can't prove NSA spying


A lawsuit isn't the answer to every problem.

In an American courtroom, you need to allege some clearly definable injury which you can prove to the satisfaction of a judge and jury was caused by the defendant --- a vague statistical argument that someone, somewhere, was out there watching you will never be good enough.

SCREW YOU, FEDS! Dozen or more US libraries line up to run Tor exit nodes


The numbers game.

There are about 16,500 public libraries in the US --- inquiries from a bare 12 of them would count as abject failure in the real world.

America's crackdown on open-source Wi-Fi router firmware – THE TRUTH


What's mine is mine and what is your's is mine too.

Godwin seems alive and well here.

I know this is new concept for the geek but the FCC exists because the early days of radio were chaotic and threatened to destroy the usefulness of this new means of communication. Sometimes there has to be a lock-down and sometimes the geek can't have everything he wants.

Windows 10 climbs to 3.55 per cent market share, Win 8.1 dips


Bringing Up The Rear

Looking at Statcounter, I see Linux flat-lined as always as a desktop OS. In 11 days Win 10 has managed to double its market share.

Slashdot, SourceForge looking for new owners after parent dumps them on the web's doorstep


SourceForge served a purpose.

The problem is that GitHub is a management tool for developers.

It doesn't catalog, describe, review, rate, and expose FOSS apps for download in way that is accessible and meaningful to users.

There are, of course, a half-dozen or so FOSS apps like Firefox that have brand-name recognition outside of the geek community.

But most just aren't that visible.

Windows 10 in head-on crash with Nvidia drivers as world watches launch


Driver Clashes

Microsoft loads the latest certified Win 10 GeForce driver from NVIDIA.

Which NVIDIA's optional driver management tool doesn't recognize and attempts to roll back --- and this is a Win 10 problem because?

Uninstall the NVIDIA app and the problem disappears.

This scenario won't be unfamiliar to anyone who has ever used multiple apps and sources to manage drivers.

The naïve user who lets the OS manage driver updates may not have an optimized system with all the latest tweaks ---

but the odds are pretty good he will have a stable system that performs quite well.

Run Windows 10 on your existing PC you say, Microsoft? Hmmm.


OS Compression In Windows 10

Paul Thurrott explains OS compression in Windows 10:

"One of the many things that makes Windows 10 unique is that this version of Windows takes up less space on a disk and requires fewer resources than its predecessors. Microsoft accomplishes this magic with a technology it calls OS compression, reducing the storage footprint of Windows 10 by 5.5 GB to 14.6 GB overall.

It goes something like this: Windows 10 uses “an efficient compression algorithm” to compress system files and it includes recovery enhancements that have removed the requirement for a separate recovery image.

That system file compression bit gives back 1.5 GB (for 32-bit Windows) or 2.6 GB (for 64-bit) of storage, Microsoft says. And the Push Button Reset functionality—PC Reset and PC Refresh—has been redesigned in this version to not require a separate recovery image. That saves an additional 4 GB to 12 GB of space. (This latter advance applies only to PCs, laptops and tablets, not phones.)

Of course, this raises an obvious question. If there’s no recovery image, how does Push Button Reset even work?

According to Microsoft, “the Refresh and Reset functionalities will [now] rebuild the operating system in place using runtime system files … this take up less disk space [and] it means you will not have a lengthy list of operating system updates to reinstall after recovering your device.” That’s right, it’s a two-fer.

(If things really go south, you will need to have created recovery media, which I’ll be documenting here on this site and in the forthcoming book Windows 10 Field Guide.)"

Microsoft Explains OS Compression in Windows 10

Microsoft's Xbox TV studio OBLITERATED


Blakes 7 had limited exposure on PBS in the states --- and that was 35 years ago.

But, more importantly, I think people have grown more than a little weary of the dark - cynical - SF Blakes 7 pioneered.

It's 2015 and Microsoft has figured out anything can break Windows



This story reads like a reporter's unedited dump from OneNote.

Linux on the desktop has a market share of about 1.5%. Pathetic even by Win 8 standards and little changed since the dawn of time.

What happens there impacts almost no one.

Silk Road boss Ross Ulbricht to spend LIFE in PRISON without parole


Enough rope.

I keep thinking of Hans Reiser --- and every other geek who has gone into court thinking he held the winning hand.

The sympathy card to be played at the last when all else failed.

Ars Technica posted a clear summary of the judge's sentence of Ulbricht.


What the judge saw in his logs and journals was a narcissistic sociopath who conceived and managed a criminal enterprise on a global scale.

"It was your opus. You wanted it to be your legacy --- and it is."

As for Fernando Caudevilla, or "Doctor X," the Spanish doctor hired by Ulbricht to give advice to users, the judge read his messages, and found them "breathtakingly irresponsible."

Netflix to Cuba: Care to spend half your wages to see Dirty Dancing: Havana Nights?


Flip side.

Keeping it simple.

Netflix is less interested in what it can sell to Cuba today then it what it can buy from Cuba --- or produce in Cuba ---- tomorrow for its growing Hispanic audience.

Boy, 16, cuffed after posting selfie with body of kid he allegedly killed


No Death Penalty.

In March 2005, the United States Supreme Court ruled that the death penalty for those who had committed their crimes at under 18 years of age was cruel and unusual punishment and hence barred by the Constitution.


Androids in celluloid – which machine deserves the ULTIMATE MOVIE ROBOT title?



WALL-E without EVE?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uz-7aQ_JYYg (Eve's Theme)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NPW3mvAN0Rc (Define Dancing)

Does this float your boat? Dead Steve Jobs to hijack yachts from beyond the grave


Repeat after me.

Voland's right hand:

"Just grab any Sci Fi video from last 20 years (Stargate Atlantis comes to mind) and there will be at least one guy controlling a boat (OK, granted a space one) with a tablet."

Fiction is not prior art.

I have never understand why the geek finds this simple concept so difficult to grasp.

The screenwriter only has to suggest an affordable prop or special effect which will look plausible on

screen and won't bring the action and story to a screeching halt.

He doesn't have to engineer a solution robust and sane enough to trusted when remotely piloting a 60 meter yacht.

Dude, you're getting a Dell – with Bitcoin: IT giant slurps cryptocash


Keeping it simple.

Dell isn't accepting payment in bitcoins.

It is accepting payments in dollars from a single bitcoin exchange.

Zuck: Web drones, not balloons (cough, cough Google) are way forward


Re: FB & Google...

<<When people in a remote village come down with something, it would help a lot if the local clinic was able to get Internet access, look up the symptoms, and come up with a possible treatment.<<

This assumes there is a clinic.

That the symptoms aren't well known.

and that the clinic has the resources to provide anything more than palliative care.

Eight hour cleansing to get all the 'faggots' and 'bitches' OUT of Github


Keep it simple, keep it clean.

If you are posting code to a public repository, it strikes me as plain common sense to present it as professionally as possible.

If someone is looking for evidence to make a case for harassment in the workplace, anything in print is far game.

Comments that read as black flags to employers or prospective employers are going to come back to haunt you.

Wackadoo DIYers scissor-kick beatboxer


Re: 30+ years later

<<And only now it gets an entry in the OED? That's timely.

Google returns 666 million hits for "e-ticket." Both as shorthand for electronic ticket and the exceptional experience in dining, entertainment, travel and so on.

The purpose of the OED is to document the history and use of the English language. Some popular but ephemeral usages will make it in too quickly, perhaps.

Other, and ultimately more significant and enduring coinages, may have to wait awhile. It's a judgment call, and there is no magic formula or crystal ball to help you make the tight choices.

Bill Gates is BACK... as CHIEF RICH human of PLANET EARTH


Re: @NormDP

<<Admittedly because I was the majority shareholder and chief techy type for a company that wrote software that could run on a Windows stack I made rather a lot more money than I gave to Bill...<<

In plain English, your company saw a very good return on its investment in the Microsoft OS. Installed on the cheap commodity PCs designed for the MSDOS and Windows markets.


Farming is a business.

Let ne introduce you to the farmer.

He buys seeds from companies Monsanto because his fields are more productive, his crops consistently sell for a very good price and his labor costs and other expenses are much lower than the alternatives ---

including harvesting his own seeds.

Harvard student thrown off 14,000-core super ... for mining Dogecoin


Grounded for life.

Andrew Fernie:

"Lieutenant, you are looking at the only Starfleet cadet who ever beat the no-win scenario."

The geek needs to stop drawing life-lessons from Star Trek. Real life isn't scripted to give him the win.

Apple cash stash dash results in Icahn v CalPERS bitchfight


News for nerds.

Tabloid style headlines give me a headache.

Volunteers slam plans to turn Bletchley Park into 'geeky Disneyland'


Re: Time marches on.

TNMOC peter:

You don't get rid of the veterans BEFORE you bring in the pantomime mob, you actively engage them to pass on their knowledge over time...

I agree that the transition needs to be planned.

But nostalgia for the days when Bletchley Park was for the geek alone and senior volunteers could carry the full weight of the educational program is misguided.


Time marches on.

The "elderly pensioners who made Bletchley Park" aren't going to be around forever.

The electro-mechanical and vacuum tube technologies enshrined here will recede further and further into the past.

as will memories of the Second World War.

The makes the role of the actor --- the presenter or interpreter --- who doesn't know the tech or the history first-hand --- more important and more challenging.

ATM hacker Barnaby Jack's death blamed on accidental drug overdose


Occam's Razor

I can't imagine any competent pathologist missing the signs of long-term drug and alcohol abuse --- and the drug cocktail is a known killer.

"Overdose fatalities usually involve an opioid drug like heroin, Vicodin or Oxycontin that is taken for non-medical purposes in combination with alcohol or other drugs.

Most overdose fatalities result from mixing drugs, and the most dangerous kind of drug to include in the mix is an opioid. Mixing "downs" or "depressant drugs"—the class that includes alcohol, opioids, and tranquilizers like Valium and Ambien—is what killed Heath Ledger, and is, according to Frank Vocci, director of the Division of Pharmacotherapy for the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), "unquestionably" the deadliest combination. Seventy-five percent of overdoses involve drug mixtures."


Naked Aussie gets wedged in washing machine


Wierd News

It happened again.

For the second time in less than a week, someone has gotten stuck in a washing machine playing a game of hide-and-seek.

A 20-year-old Australian man got stuck in a top-load washing machine Saturday in the hopes of scaring his girlfriend, BBC reports.

He was also naked.

On Friday, an 11-year-old Utah girl made headlines after a similar ordeal. The girl, who did not want to be identified out of embarrassment, was playing hide-and-seek when she got stuck in the machine for 90 minutes. Firefighters were eventually able to pry her out.

"She really wanted to win," the girl's mother said.

On Friday, an 11-year-old Utah girl made headlines after a similar ordeal. The girl, who did not want to be identified out of embarrassment, was playing hide-and-seek when she got stuck in the machine for 90 minutes. Firefighters were eventually able to pry her out.

"She really wanted to win," the girl's mother said.

Despite needing help from authorities, these two pioneers of hide and seek should be admired for their commitment to hiding.


weird news has a video....

Silk Road 2.0 busted! At least two arrests as federal crackdown begins


Panic Attack.

If you are a cop, you've have got to love this:

"Guys I was arrested yesterday and out on bond now. But something is fucked! I know I'm risking more warning you guys and my attorney doesn't even want me on the internet but you guys need to know this. When I was in the interview they showed me all sorts of shit that they should not know or have access to ... Something is definitely wrong and they have the ability to see things on here only mods or admins should like transfers and a dispute I had."

The first to spill their guts gets a deal, the rest will be hung out to dry.

Cocky Microsoft strokes soft tool in public for 3D printing on Windows 8.1


He who laughs last...

The Makerbot Win 8.1 driver is available now through Windows Update. MakerBot 3D printer driver for Windows 8.1 goes live

The Makerbot Replicator 2 is $2,200. Expensive. But not out of line for a first generation consumer product.

HP introduced the mass-market laser printer, the LaserJet series II, in March 1987. The HP LaserJet II was designed from the ground up as a laser printer with correct order page output as opposed to being leveraged from the Canon PC-20 personal copier. The HP LaserJet II used PCL4, improved features, more memory and fonts for a market price of $2,695.

HP Laser Jet

Adjusted for inflation, $5172,

Free and easy to use entry level CAD/CAM software. OS support. Supported hardware sold off-the-shelf through major retail outlets.

Not a bad place to begin.


Cisco: We'll open-source our H.264 video code AND foot licensing bill


Enterprise Cap

Cisco is one of about thirty H.264 licensors.

Most of them global industrial giants like LG, Mitsubishi, Philips and Samsung.

There is an enterprise cap on H,264 royalties. Currently $6.5 million/yr. Cisco's revenues are about $49 billion/yr.

The video compression codec is about the perception of color, depth, motion and detail. In both video and sound, It is not a simple problem ----

which is why even Google can come up short.

Want to keep the users happy? Don't call them users for a start


Re: Perhaps when

N2: "Perhaps when The users stop referring to sysads as 'geeks' Until then they can F off"

IT provides technical support.

Users are directly engaged in the business of their employer --- some of them at a very high level.

They stay. You go.

Cambridge withdraws from World Solar Challenge


Back to the old drawing board.

With all due respect, it's a 3,000 km run.

The car needs to be stable. The test track can only give you a single snapshot of the conditions you might experience on the road.

I can't say I like the idea of using tilting solar panels on an ultra light vehicle that may not in its basic configuration be particularly stable or easy to control

Roll up, roll up: Cash, Bitcoin and booze offered for iPhone 5S fingerprint scanner hack


Tech marches on.

The geek can't let go of a Mythbusters trick he saw maybe five to ten years back.

The 5s scanner uses both capacitive and RF sensors. It reads living tissue beneath the outer layers of the skin and it expects a pulse.


BBC releases MYSTERY RIDDLE poster for Doctor Who anniversary episode


Re: The science behind Doctor Who?

AC: "You have got to be kidding, the Tardis control panel consisting of parts of a Victorian steam engine."

The Time Lords were masters of deception and camouflage. It defined their culture and technology. The Doctor has never been able to escape this fully.

The external controls of a TARDIS are mimetic.

Their physical appearance or construction have never really mattered. What matters is the one-on-one relationship between a Time Lord and the system's core AI:

"I may not always take you where you want to go, but I will always take you to where you need to be,"

EFF, Lessig battling copyright takedowns


"The Harvard Law School professor's talk included short clips of amateur dance videos that used French band Phoenix's Lisztomania as the soundtrack. After delivering the lecture, Lessig uploaded the clips to YouTube, and the fun started."

To me this sounds like the clips were stripped from the lectures and stitched together for an independent musical performance on YouTube.

I don't know how you can frame a legally persuasive "fair use" case out of that. The take down order seems perfectly legitimate.

Feds arrest rogue trucker after GPS jamming borks New Jersey airport test


LarsG: Will now be known as 'Lucky Bojczak'.

Out of a job. $32K fine that can't be discharged in bankruptcy. Could maybe see his commercial license revoked.

Don't trust us? Try these Office 365 stats, says Microsoft


Office 365 is a tiered subscription service.

You will most likely have the full MS Office Suite resident on your PC and automatic synchronization of locally stored files with those stored in the cloud.

Your work will not come to a screeching halt if Sky Drive is down or you can't access the Internet.

Yes, maybe we should keep hackers in the clink for YEARS, mulls EU


About time.

When you break into someone's home, you won't get far arguing that your motives were well-intentioned --- no matter how crack-brained --- and that any damage you caused was accidental or that the owner was at fault because he should have invested in better locks.

First Cook, now Intel bigwig pokes Google in the eye over Glass


The tech is not the problem.

Google Glass has a patent on a see-through display.

Google details how Glass could look like traditional sunglasses using see-through displays

Early prototypes of Glass were, well, much more in-your-face.

Google Glass headset with bone-conduction speakers revealed in FCC filing

The defining image of Google Glass is the dork in the shower who creeps you out. This is the problem.

Guys Like This Could Kill Google Glass Before It Ever Gets Off the Ground

Charity chief: Get with it, gov - kids shouldn't have to write by hand


Re: In some regards, he has a point though

Stu J: "The people who were studying English Lit, History etc, who were used to writing for that period of time, had a huge advantage over someone who was used to scrawling equations and formulae, and very little prose."

This tells me you had almost no general education whatsoever. That you couldn't think or express yourself clearly and concisely outside of an equation.

PEAK APPLE: Fondleslab giant no longer world's biggest biz


Let it go.

It is only a slight exaggeration to say that every hit in a Google search for "fondleslab" links back to The Reg.

The one geek coinage that has failed to gain traction on Slashdot ---- where hitting on the "luser" has always been fair game.

WTF is... H.265 aka HEVC?


H.264 and WebM

H.264 royalties are straightforward.

If you are not into content production or codec distribution on a commercial scale MPEG LA has no interest in you whatsoever.


The problem with WebM is that it is --- for all practical purposes --- nothing more than a distribution codec for YouTube.

H.264 has a much broader reach.

Broadcast, cable and satellite distribution. Industrial and military applications. Automotive. Security. Home video and so on. Google is big but not that big.


OLPC shuns Indian founder after anti-tablet screed



You won't go far wrong in saying that the XO laptop is almost unknown outside of Spanish speaking Central and South America.

That raises huge questions about the cultural biases and assumptions that may have been woven into what was essentially a product of the MIT Media Lab.

One Laptop per Child: Deployment of XO laptops: Summary of laptop orders

Modder hacks SimCity for unlimited offline play


Just a reminder.

Amaazon restored the Sim City download about two days back now.

Where it stands as No.2 in combined video and PC game hardware and software sales. It's not often you see a PC game top this list.

The Sim City download is No 2 in PC game sales.

The Sim City DLC European city double-pack No, 12 in PC simulation game sales.

EA has 19 games in the top 50 at the time of this posting. [9:45 PM EDT Wed 14 ]

Microsoft Office 2013 vs. Office 365: Is either right for you?


Office 365 University (without Lync) is $80 US for four years, with a 2 PC + mobile devices limit. There is also three tiers of campus-wide "Office 365 for education." services.

Office 365 is multilingual and has a global reach.

I put this to Slashdot and I think it is worth repeating here. Office 365 targets the clerical worker or professional for whom the MS Office suite is one of the fundamental tools of his trade.

If other members of the family are using the software, it is because they share the same interests and ambitions and are functioning at more or less the same level.

These are not casual users --- and this is not a "Works" market,

The geek still thinks in terms of the stand-alone office suite, not integrated office systems, in which a client like Outlook is only a single component.

He undervalues sites like Office.com. Miles wide and deep in resources.