* Posts by Mike 125

374 publicly visible posts • joined 1 Jun 2010


Dump C++ and in Rust you should trust, Five Eyes agencies urge

Mike 125

Re: Complexity

There's a lesson in this for politicians... but I don't want to spoil the puzzle!

Buggy app for insulin-delivery device puts diabetes patients at risk of hypoglycemia

Mike 125

"Buggy app for insulin-delivery device puts diabetes patients at risk of hypoglycemia"

Fortunately, they publish these few simple warnings, thereby discharging all responsibility.


Microsoft opens sources ThreadX under MIT license

Mike 125

"ThreadX is a tested and established product; some parts even have TÜV Functional Safety (FuSa) certification, such as the STM32 version [PDF]. That kind of thing is powerfully attractive to some customers."

Very true.

"As soon as this innocent little OS turned 21 in 2019, Microsoft grabbed it, acquiring ThreadX owners Express Logic and rebranding the poor thing as Azure RTOS, "

And now it's ruined.

As history demonstrates.


UnitedHealthcare's broken AI denied seniors' medical claims, lawsuit alleges

Mike 125

Re: Robots in charge?

>the day when 'robots will take over' is long, long away.

The day when 'robots will take over' is long, long, long, very long....................

You don't need a mechanical machine for human lives to be at the whim of AI.


"An economic and political system in which a country's trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit."

AI is making short shrift of optimising that. We already see the latest generation of private owners- tech multi-billionaires.

PIRG petitions Microsoft to extend the life of Windows 10

Mike 125


Link doesn't accept UK post codes- not a good start.

Told them. Hey cynics- you gotta believe.

(oh... jeez......what the hell hooch is this... 95%................. ahh...)

Windows 11: The number you have dialed has been disconnected

Mike 125

It's not hard

"There is no user benefit to any of this any more, just bloat, annoyance, and tedious reviews."

On a personal level, if MS offered to cut all the garbage including telemetry, since Windows 7, keep security, kernel and filesystems updated to latest, and stop threatening to kill my old Dell Windows 10 lappy dead, I'd happily pay a modest subscription.

I'm guessing that would apply to most small to medium business users.

But that makes far too much sense for MS.

Excel recruitment time bomb makes top trainee doctors 'unappointable'

Mike 125

Re: "The NHS suffers from a chronic shortage of anesthetists"

> I used to think that a key attribute of interactive IT was that it should be intuitive to use but apparently I was wrong, even where the implications of failure might be life critical.

I used to think that a key attribute of a national health system was to allow me to occasionally... you know, see and talk to, like, an actual doctor. But apparently I was wrong, even where the implications of failure might be life critical.

UK admits 'spy clause' can't be used for scanning encrypted chat – it's not 'feasible'

Mike 125

"...draw a discreet veil over the devices with potential for surveillance supplied by large technology companies that people have indeed cheerfully installed in their houses."

And in which they cheerfully drive around.

I love it when politicians are *finally* forced to accept a scientific and mathematical truth.

There's a good chance your VPN is vulnerable to privacy-menacing TunnelCrack attack

Mike 125

Re: TunnelCrack

Shame- my builder won't get his coffee this morning- he doesn't respond to tunnelcrack.

Let there be light ... based wireless networks: LiFi spec OK'd as Wi-Fi complement

Mike 125


> One of the rationales for LiFi is security. According to pureLiFi, the technology is "inherently secure" – walls serve as firewalls since light does not pass through them

Yep, that makes sense, for the physical carrier, at least.

Really don't see any other serious use cases... fun to play with though.

Brit broadband subscribers caught between crappy connections and price hikes

Mike 125

Re: Genuine question

> What if anything has gotten better over the past 10 years?

CEO and other executive pay- inversely proportional to the quality of service delivered to the customer, especially for monopolies, together with their public school pals- sorry, 'regulators'.

And that is Absolutely true. It is, it's true!

Time running out for crew of missing Titanic tourist submarine

Mike 125

Re: So the ghouls who want to look at where 1000+ people died

> they can make a movie about it

James Cameron's all over it this morning (Friday)


You nailed it

Amazon confirms it locked Microsoft engineer out of his Echo gear over false claim

Mike 125

Re: no backup strategy, SMH stupidity

I assume you haven't bought an electric car recently. Every aspect we rail against is already part of the deal with a car.

And in the UK, the coming generation of 'green, super-efficient, smart' homes will have this stuff built-in too. Connected sensors in walls, controls built in to every part of the structure, etc. etc.

Every part of the house will have the same dependencies and vulnerabilities as any connected device. And of course, the favoured suppliers of all that stuff love it.

It's happening already. And the kids love it.

Live in a barge. Except for when the river dries.

Microsoft’s Azure mishap betrays an industry blind to a big problem

Mike 125

> but at least with Cloudflare you get a detailed, published RCA

If planes keep crashing, is it enough to investigate and explain why?

The big players can now give 80 pages of explanation.

And do nothing.

And get away with it.

It must cost them realistic bucks, if this is going to change.

Australia to phase out checks by 2030

Mike 125

Re: They still exist?

Idiot now. Old bat soon enough.

I've seen things you wouldn't believe, like an atom about to photosynthesize

Mike 125

> I had no idea that the process of photosynthesis was still so poorly understood

You beat me to it. It's humbling. What strange priorities we have- space, bombs and bullets before even a blade of grass.

But I suppose some damn smart machines are needed to analyse what happens when complex molecules interact "for more than three billion years."

Florida folks dragged out of bed by false emergency texts

Mike 125

Homer makes more sense

It's been said, but who cares-- It's guaranteed that for the emergencies we *need* to know about, the system won't work.

Homer got it right.


4chan and other web sewers scraped up into Google's mega-library for training ML

Mike 125

Re: Devil’s advocate

>Surely everyone is entitled to be heard, no?

If we want AI to behave like humans- absolutely. That's humans' advocate!

But is that what we want?

I'd prefer an AI trained on the scientific principle: suggest explanations from the evidence, test the sh't out of them, drop the fails, and keep on testing. The last one standing- go with that for now.

There's an AI for the future.

OK OK, godamnit- Musk got there first... I *really hate* that guy...

Here's a fun idea: Try to unlock and drive away in someone else's Tesla

Mike 125

Re: But physical keys can be hacked

> kids have helped me to readily identify my car, by spray-painting 'Dickhead!'

Dumbass kids.

Smart kids would've sprayed Dickhead on the neighbour's car to confuse you.

It's official: BlackLotus malware can bypass Secure Boot on Windows machines

Mike 125

Re: Secure boot is only part of the solution

There'll be an embedded controller with a dedicated kernel. (See 'firmware version' on disk maintenance tools). And the kernel *should be* firmware- not writable externally.

Then there'll be configuration type flash, writable by the host in some way.

As for malware attacking a disk- if the host is pwned, and there's a weakness at the host <-> disk interface, anything's possible. Where the disk sits within the overall PC security model, or even if that's a thing- I have no idea.

Mike 125

Re: Secure boot is only part of the solution

>PC BIOS ROM was replaced by something that could be in situ software updated (with no motherboard jumpers to be installed/removed), it was said this was a security risk…

The same was said for processor microcode. But nobody listened then either.

And the keys were hacked.

And Intel continues moronically on in its parallel universe, where speed is all that counts.

Signal says it'll shut down in UK if Online Safety Bill approved

Mike 125

Re: Bring it in

Conservative MP for Ashfield Lee Anderson:

"Nobody has ever committed a crime after being executed."


"Kill everyone before they get the chance."

The Twitpocalypse may have begun, as datacenter migration reportedly founders

Mike 125

Re: "Going forward, Twitter will be broadly accepting of different values"

Going forward, Twitter will be broadly... going backward.

The guy's bored out of his skull.

He's gone from 'Disrupting' (which is kinda fun) to 'Influencing' (which is just f'king sad).

Develop a new machine please, Elon. And nothing 'Boring'.

Next-gen Qi2 wireless charging spec seeded by Apple

Mike 125

Re: Efficiency is in the eye of the echo chamber, apparently ...

>whining about how wireless charging is destroying the climate/environment?

And to continue your pot stirring: every power supply with outputs accessible to the consumer, has an air gap (or some other equivalent insulator). So the wired chargers are all already, internally, wireless.

>Why the deafening silence

Because it's hardly a priority. And the savings made by avoiding all the wires is probably greater.

The 5G issue is bigger.


When ERP projects go bad: Surrey County Council's £30m ditch SAP effort delayed again

Mike 125

Come on, give them a break

It's called disruption. Move fast and break things. Someone has to push the envelope.

Cutting edge, mind-boggling technology like this always has issues.

It's not like anybody, anywhere on Earth, ever, has even imagined anything, even dimly approaching the complexity and scale of this before.

Not, like, 1000s of times.

It's not like the basic requirements for council IT are pretty much identical across all councils.

So give them a break.

ChatGPT has mastered the confidence trick, and that's a terrible look for AI

Mike 125

prove it!

"Just one problem – the quality of the code is bad."

We've all seen terrible code produced by humans- that proves nothing!

So here's the challenge: Find the shortest, simplest request, which demonstrates unequivocally how dangerously dumb ChatGPT actually is.

iFixit stabs batteries – for science – so you don't have to

Mike 125

Re: Energy has to go somewhere

Interesting. I've worked in labs with full isolation xformers, but the iso side just floats- so zero path WRT earth.

What does the centre-tap add? That link doesn't really explain.

Swiss bankers warn: Three quarters of retail Bitcoin investors are in the red

Mike 125

>Trading should be something taught at school

It is. It's taught in posh schools, to the idiot daughters/ sons of aristocrats and billionaires, who then get jobs as CEOs in merchant banks, or fintech, or whatever dodgy money laundering outfit their friends own.

Shhhhhh. Quiet. It's a gooooooood thing.

Voyager mission's project scientist retires after 50 years of service

Mike 125


In the gamut of inspirational careers, sending your baby into space is right up there.

For engineers, it beats going to space, hands down.

Ed Stone would have had a sharp rejoinder for Buzz Aldrin.


UK government in talks with datacenter operators over blackouts

Mike 125

prime time?

"AWS insisted that: "This issue does not pose a risk to AWS services at this time."

Amazon should calculate the energy required to support every customer, forced to execute his/her 'Prime sign-up Avoidance Strategy', at every checkout. Make it an account setting- energy deficit would disappear instantly.

Senior engineer reported to management for failing to fix a stapler

Mike 125

people are weird about staplers

Relevant only in as much as- it's a stapler. (And this sold the whole series to me.)


More than 4 in 10 PCs still can't upgrade to Windows 11

Mike 125


So there was this meeting. And a tw't said 'Listen, guys, let's turn it up to 11'.


And everyone's been sat round in embarrassed silence ever since.

Ballmer taught them well.

Tesla has a lot of work to do on its Optimus robot

Mike 125

Re: Not reviewing well

"walks like an old man who just crapped himself".

So capable of predicting all our futures... maybe it's mocking us?

Is it time to retire C and C++ for Rust in new programs?

Mike 125

Re: Real programmers

>limited and archaic systems that, generally speaking, no longer exist.

Billions of small scale, 16/32 bit embedded processors exist. They're not going anywhere. Lack of supply is a big issue.

>lack of type safety and monumentally poor runtime library

Those who understand C understand the library and its limits. It was appropriate for its time.

Your issue is with history.

You sound like the moaning Rust eggheads, except they moan much better:


Rust is eating into our systems, and it's a good thing

Mike 125

we won't go quietly...

"A generation of systems programmers have gone from hip young codeslingers to senior management,"

You say that like it's a good thing. Some of us stayed coding, because done properly, it's just as satisfying and fun as it ever was.

Of course, change must come. No corner of IT, big or small, is single threaded any more. And it's no longer just about execution speed and code size.

So bring it on, young guns. Show us what you've got.

But I'll C you and raise you anyday!

Japanese boffins build solar-powered, remote-controlled cyborg cockroach

Mike 125

Re: Sunlight

So wait- you think the first ever Madagascar hissing-solar-cy-cock-borg-roach isn't cool enough already??

Tough crowd.

Boffins build microphone safety kit to detect eavesdroppers

Mike 125

Re: Looks like a good tool...

>To detect which machines have the lowest EM footprint ;-)

And which are vulnerable to as yet undreamt-of side channel attacks.

Forget the air gap. A continuous, detailed, real-time analysis of the physical parameters of a machine, (power consumption, noise, peripheral activity, etc.) would make the attack surface almost infinite.

Without source code and an authenticated nod from the Schneier-Meister, I wouldn't let that device in the building, let alone near a laptop.

Go clunky switch!

AI detects 20,000 hidden taxable swimming pools in France, netting €10m

Mike 125

Re: Pool or pond

A true wildlife pond teems with life. It has high environmental value.

Ed Sheeran on the other hand... does not.

Microsoft finds critical hole in operating system that for once isn't Windows

Mike 125

For the record...

safe() is *always* safe, (unless your stack overflows!):

char s[] = "hello world!\n";

char d[sizeof s];

void safe(void) { strcpy(d, s); }

I thank you.

Mike 125

Re: I wonder if they thought to try the same search on their own source?

> knows no bounds.

I see what you did there.

Lessons to be learned from Google and Oracle's datacenter heatstroke

Mike 125

Ok but...

"a disruption to the datacenter’s supply of electric power or a breakdown in the cooling control system, or a failure to respond to or detect rising temperatures, can set you down the path to an outage."

etc., etc., etc...

Is it me, or does basically ALL of this article sound like a long statement of the ultimate in the bleeding obvious?

What would be more interesting is some explanation for what happens to the heat once extracted, especially in the middle of London. (Texas...? Well, who the hell cares... maybe it keeps the oil warm.)

As Google reminds us with every search:

'Carbon neutral since 2007'

Scientists use supercritical carbon dioxide to power the grid

Mike 125

Re: Comments section

> English incomers or English 2nd/holiday homes?

Back in the '80s and '90s, those were extremely well heated.

Apple says 2017 MacBooks don't have FlexGate defect. Aussie tribunal orders a fix anyway

Mike 125

Re: It's not hard

It used to be new, shiny and *it just works*, which I could accept.

If the people want new, shiny and *it's just garbage*, they've only got themselves to blame.

Mike 125

Re: Apparently

He's viewing it wrong.

Mike 125

It's not hard

"Apple's environmental impact FAQ to assert that the company designs its products to last four years – making problems that manifested in 2021 reasonable for Goode's 2017 MacBook."

"He even mentioned that a 2011 MacBook he gave to a relative still performs perfectly (running Linux to avoid using an unsupported OS)."

I bought 2 Dell business lappys off eBay for £150 a piece in early 2017. They were manufactured around 2012/2013.

With WIN10 latest and Dell BIOS/driver updates, old drivers for odd bits of hardware (hence no Linux), Visual Studio 10 (I know, I know- but it works), sleep modes, etc., they perform pretty much perfectly. And that's a very high bar for me.

Not wishing to big up Msoft (or Dell), but that's pretty decent for backwards compatibility and tech lifetime.

Why people put up with Apple's garbage is utterly beyond me.

BT demos 4-carrier 5G aggregation – on a live network

Mike 125

Whose benefit...

"but again it would only tell us that "We will see an uplift in both capacity and speeds as a result of this technology.""

Yea, *you* will. But what about the end user?

Sounds like a big part of 5G is for the provider's benefit. All this multiplexing going on... DAB anyone?

Good to see Nokia back in the loop.

Claims of AI sentience branded 'pure clickbait'

Mike 125

Re: Definition

>definitions of sentience and consciousness are heavily debated and far from straightforward, on every level from the philosophical to the physiological.

Thank you. I thought it was just me.

I'm always suspicious of those who claim 'The definition isn't difficult.' It fairly obviously is.

And equally for intelligence.

Until we understand more about the mechanism in humans, we'll struggle to find a good, objective definition for machines... assuming there's a difference...

Toyota's truck brand Hino admits faking and fudging emissions data for 20 years

Mike 125

All those 'tests'....

The mystery isn't that it happened, and happens.

The mystery is that they got/get away with it for so long.

One explanation is that *all* manufacturers knew, all along. Else why did none blow the whistle.

An obvious, realistic test was all it took.

Computer glitches harmed 'nearly 150' patients after Oracle Cerner system go-live

Mike 125

Re: Unknown problems

> storing fixed format records on a small number of humans, retrieving them, updating them and ultimately deleting them - is a famous unsolved problem in computer science.

Henceforth known as the 'Oracle-Cerner Unknown Queue Paradox'.

Russian ChessBot breaks child opponent's finger

Mike 125

Re: Will the next news be that a chess Robot is caught bashing the bishop...

TBBT (back when it was funny)