* Posts by adfh

68 publicly visible posts • joined 22 Jul 2010


The Metaverse is the internet no one wants



... so I can briefly visit a website in a Google hit, then be stalked by its chatbot asking if I want to buy their tat until I tell it to bugger off.

"It looks like you looks like you glanced in my direction, I'll follow you to keep asking to spam you"

Google keeps legacy G Suite alive and free for personal use


So it does or doesn't include email now?

Windows 11: What we like and don't like about Microsoft's operating system so far


Hands off my taskbar osition!

I put my taskbar down the left of my 1200p primary display, and this works well for my workflow.. providing a sample of the window titles without me having to do a heap of hovering to discover windows and subwindows etc.

I don't run a touchscreen device, and I don't want a Mac.. quit locking the UI down!

Ah, I see you found my PowerShell script called 'SiteReview' – that does not mean what you think it means


URL autocomplete

Windows XP.

Working on computer that belonged to senior person in recently merged branch of company I used to work for.

Win+R happy tap colon slash slash www.you autocompletes with porn video link :)

I screen snapped the autocomplete, sent it to my boss (tech head) for a laugh, and moved on.

Chrome 'Conformance' for JavaScript frameworks says: If you don't follow our rules, your project won't build


When I hear "conformant" I'm thinking...

... flight of the navigator and "Compliance"


Open standard but not open access: Schematron author complains about ISO paywall


Same thing with Standards Australia

Standards, required by law to be followed, behind a paywall. Doesn't seem right that something mandated by law is behind a paywall.

Google wants to look like it cares about your privacy with Android 12 Beta 2, but note that's not how Google works


They talk of advertising ID block, but what about phone info?

I read that they were talking about blocking the advertising ID as allegedly being a privacy improvement...

Meanwhile, how many apps ask for access to phone information to use handset identifiers and subscriber numbers instead?

Nest bricks Revolv home automation hubs, because evolution


So... did anyone ever end up unlocking a Revolv?

Did anyone ever end up unlocking one of these? The only Google hit seems to be some person getting the bootloader output to come up, and then bricking it...



A perfect example of how hardware built as a terminal/interface/gateway to a specific online service is, ultimately, beholden to that company for service.

It's depressing to think that there'll be all this hardware out there, that with the right software could continue doing what it needs to do, but is ultimately going to end up in landfill.

Who, realistically, expects equipment to only last the warranty period? Is someone realistically thinking, "$300? Oh wow, that's less than a dollar a day!"

I wonder if anyone's managed to unlock one and re-task it? I wonder if perhaps businesses that yank the rug out from under their customers should perhaps consider opening up their devices and/or unlocking them?

Very much a dick move on the part of Alphabet/Google/Nest.

Excel is for amateurs. To properly screw things up, those same amateurs need a copy of Access


Filemaker Pro anyone? :)

Geneticists throw hands in the air, change gene naming rules to finally stop Microsoft Excel eating their data


This REALLY shits me about Excel

I remember, once upon a time, you'd open a CSV and it'd give you the wizard.

Now, it defaults to just opening the CSV - and if you want it to open the Wizard, you have to rename it to .TXT and open it - or use some weird data import wizard that configures the CSV as a data source ?

Grrr.. humbug...

Creeps give away money to harass recipients with abusive transaction descriptions on bank statements


BPay Osko

BPay Osko, an NPP based product, allows a lot longer descriptions than 18 chars.

The iMac at 22: How the computer 'too odd to succeed' changed everything ... for Apple, at least


Don't forget...

... the absolutely horrible hockey puck mouse, and the USB ports and cables for keyboard with the bloody notch in them!

Does a .com suffix make a trademark? The US Supreme Court will decide as Booking marks its legal spot


If this passes..

... how would it affect international businesses using international domains? Example.com say vs example.com.au

Cosmo Communicator: Phone-laptop hybrid is neat, if niche, tilt at portable productivity


Re: Deal breaker

Agreed.. the CODI is horrible, and battery is much better with it off!

The BlackBerry in your junk drawer is now a collectors' item: TCL says no more new keyboard-clad phones


So where does this leave folks like Typo that Blackberry went after in the past?

So if Blackberry the company has gone more for services, and TCL the manufacturer who's licensed Blackberry brand for devices isn't going to make keyboards... does that mean that there's space in the market again for things like Typo's add-on physical keyboards?

That said, I have a Cosmo Communicator that's going fairly well thus far.

Help! I bought a domain and ended up with a stranger's PayPal! And I can't give it back


Trying to report when people sign up with my addresses is painful

I feel the domain owner's pain.. I have several domains, G Suite accounts, plain Google accounts etc.. It seems that one of the gmail accounts in particular is a favourite typo of someone in Ireland, and someone in the US.

I get signups for Nike, Bank of Ireland, school newsletters, Yoga, trade deals in Dubai, stationery purchases in the US etc.

Trying to find a contact address to report this shit is painful.. They all want you to sign in with an account before they even dream of handing over a contact form, and even then, they often just come back with a regurgitated KB article.

What happened to "You can't activate this email address unless you click on this link in the email, get this email by mistake? Click here to cancel it!" Oh no.. these days it's "all good to go, full steam ahead".. how hard would it be to provide a link that says "This email isn't for me!" at the bottom of these things?

FYI: Your Venmo transfers with those edgy emojis aren't private by default. And someone's put 7m of them into a public DB


Can someone tell me why Venmo is a thing?

In Australia, if you want to send a friend money, all you need is their NPP PayID for a near instant transfer, or BSB and Account number for a couple of days.

Is this really difficult in the US? Why is Venmo a thing? ... and why the hell are they publishing transactions by default?

Bug-hunters punch huge holes in WPA3 standard for Wi-Fi security


Oh for the love of ...

Seriously, who keeps coming up with this crap? Is it down to cost optimisation on the hardware? Rules around encryption on consumer devices? The need to rush the next thing to market?

That marketing email database that exposed 809 million contact records? Maybe make that two-BILLION-plus?


So now the question is...

... who are the clients who used verifications.io?

I got an alert for my family domain from haveibeenpwned.com and several legitimate email addresses were indeed flagged.

No more Windows build strings for you: BuildFeed has turned off the lights


The whole emphasis on driving features down into build numbers etc. feels very Apple

I mean, look at Apple hardware.. You used to have things like "Plus" "Classic" "SE/30" "LC II", "LC 575", "Powerbook 150" (uggh - the 150 was an abomination) - where it was clear which model was what. Now you have an indecipherable, usually really tiny string of meaningless letters and numbers hidden somewhere, and have them described as "2012 with the bezel that looks like X, and the thing on the back".

I mean, Apple dropped "OS X" and went back to "macOS" (with slightly different capitalisation).. how long until Windows 10 becomes just "Windows Client", "Windows Server", "Windows Mobile" (lol, ok I included the last one as a gag). I get that it's all about subscription models, continuous development, small releases etc.. but it's the same with trying to figure out just what exactly changed in a patch release... go to this KB article, then this one, then go to this site..

The smoke and mirrors is just so tiring!

Smartphones gateway drug to the Antichrist, says leader of Russian Orthodox Church


Is this the same one...

... where they photoshopped the uber expensive watch off his wrist, but left the reflection on the table?

Buried in the hype, one little detail: Amazon's Alexa-on-a-chip could steal smart home market



So what sort of safety interlocks would be required with devices like microwaves and other things capable of generating fire if abused?

Would Amazon be able to keep its firmware updated?

How would it connect into a home network? How would you pair a device to your network?

What sort of network access would it have to other devices in the house?

All this smart home crap.. I reckon router manufacturers are going to have to step up their game and start offering WiFi router APs with more granular permissions - "this device class may contact cloud X, and speak with other devices of type Y in the home, but is blocked from Z"...

I dunno.. the whole "smart home" thing requiring armies of servers in remote data centres, with all the associated electrical consumption seems counter intuitive. The only real benefit is the real time data acquisition the businesses can get from consumers through the pages-long clickwrap agreements.

Official: Google Chrome 69 kills off the World Wide Web (in URLs)

Thumb Down


This is bullshit..

It's bad enough when you're looking at an internal website, using an internal domain, and you switch to another system, and it thinks you're wanting to make a Google search because you didn't manually add the protocol back to the beginning of the URL ... again ...

In defence of online ads: The 'net ain't free and you ain't paying


I wouldn't mind the ads if I knew they weren't potentially carrying malware... there's so much automated brokering going on between publisher and advertiser, that no one can really be sure where something's coming from at a specific instant.

More than half of Androids susceptible to ancient malware


So the source article mentions "MXPlayer Pro"

... is it saying that this application is:

* Bad in all cases?

* Susceptible to dodgy ad injection?

* Legitimate but being distributed in third party stores/APK form with malware added

Burger barn put cloud on IT menu, burned out its developers


Hungry Jack's isn't a BK clone, it's a licensed user of BK trademarks

Basically when Burger King went to launch in Australia, someone else already had the trademark locally.


There were legal shenaningans, and for a period there were BK branded restaurants, but they never took off to the same extent, and subsequently if you want BK in Australia, you go to HJs.

Israeli Pentagon DDoSers explain their work, get busted by FBI


A legitimate security company would practice due diligence

It could be argued that they, as an alleged "security service" company, should practice due diligence on the requests they receive.

Eg. Receiving a validated response from the listed WHOIS contact for the IP range

... or verifying the presence of a special text string on the website or in DNS supplied to the person requesting testing

If you saw that the WHOIS was a large corporation, if you were a real, legitimate security company, you'd be seeking legally binding and witnessed authorisation.

nbn™ switches on first Telstra HFC-powered broadband services

Thumb Down

... and for the areas that aren't greenfield, brownfield, rural fixed wireless/satellite or HFC cabled?


TP-Link abandons 'forgotten' router config domains


Does anyone know...

... if any of the tplink devices try and redirect to the domain name if you access them via IP?

I've seen some kit (Netgear I think) redirect to domain name based addresses when hitting them on their IP.

NBN 'copper guru' ads pulled from Monster.ie


Might not come up on ASIC...

... but it comes up in ABR Search..


3-in-4 Android phones, slabs, gizmos menaced by fresh hijack flaws


Oh.. and if you have a Nexus...

... don't hit "Check for Updates" because apparently that can stop you from getting the update... I SHIT YOU NOT...


That's right, if you're diligent about installing updates as soon as vulnerabilities are released, just wait for the mothership to deem you worthy, because otherwise you can actually reduce your chances of getting it... unless of course you unlock the Nexus (wiping it) and go and directly download and flash the update yourself, bypassing the OTA mechanism. I confirmed with my carrier that they had nothing to do with the updates, and then found that above gem in the Nexus support forums.

I understand from the "sometimes updates brick things" point of view, but the idea that it can take almost until the next update is released for the current one to be made available to one's handset sucks. Certainly, having to wait up to four weeks for an update for security bugs that have big implications kinda sucks.

Don't get me wrong, otherwise happy with my Nexus 5X and the Galaxy Nexus I had before it (which I'd flashed over to Cyanogenmod when Google stopped supporting it, and which was running Kit Kat just fine up until I dropped it in a hospital bog and vowed never to touch (after retrieving it) again). I like that when the phone hits EoL, it can be unlocked and still be useful in some way... Just not big on waiting for security updates.

Ad-blocker blocking websites face legal peril at hands of privacy bods


Hrrrmm.. this feels like a stretch....

Probing a browser to test its capabilities is an intrusion of privacy?

I mean, when you seek to "fingerprint" a browser by analysing its plugins, plugin versions, font lists, request styles, version headers, cache contents etc. etc. to uniquely identify someone

Eg. https://panopticlick.eff.org/

... then yes, you are likely invading someone's privacy if you ask. But if you're querying a browser on its capabilities? Well, then that's a key part of responsive design (what resolution is your display? what pixel density? how is it oriented? Are you capable of displaying media of type X? What language shall I display to you?)...

Whilst I hate the bulk of ads, the primary reason I block them now is because of the security issue they pose due to the lack of screening for malicious payloads used in drive by downloads. The site publishers vary rarely now sell directly to advertisers, rather there's several layers of marketing and remarketing of screen real-estate going on.

That said, I feel what will happen is we'll just end up with another layer of "This site employs cookies, click agree" notifications.. Next it'll be, "This site sniffs your browser for ad blocking extensions, and deploys first and third party cookies and other tracking mechanisms.. Do you want to do anything useful? AGREE"...

The inevitable conclusion of this, as we move to "native code" on websites like Google and Firefox etc. are talking about is websites having app-like clickwrap licenses... and the web becoming less interoperable and more silo based... and then we all go back to the beginning complaining about incompatible systems and needing a standard :)

'Devastating' bug pops secure doors at airports, hospitals


Re: Attack vector

Regarding "fail safe" and where it needs to be implemented, depends on the door's location in relation to access and egress routes in the event of an emergency and the security of what's being protected.

Some door locks will fail open, some will fail secure - it all depends on where the door is, and if it's legally required to be open in the event of an emergency... This is why in some places you'll find an access card reader, and then next to it a "break glass" override.. or why if you have a card to access an office, often for egress you can just use the doorhandle ("Escape set" configuration).

Depending on how the system's implemented, there isn't always a direct link between reader and door lock - so overloading the signal/power lines on a card reader may only succeed in blowing out the port on a local controller node, whilst the lock may be separately connected. By releasing the magic smoke on the card reader, you likely just make it harder for anyone to open the door at the location, and in a properly monitored install, flag that there's a fault in the reader equipment at a given location.

Computer says: Stop using MacWrite II, human!


I remember in highschool...

... there was an extension popular with the mac users. MacPuke :)

Command+E *loud puking noise* *out pops disk* :)

Boss of classified ad website Backpage.com faces first contempt of Congress in 20 years


Citing first amendment?

The First Amendment is the right to free speech.. Did he or you mean fifth - freedom not to self incriminate? ... or am i missing something in the first? ... or is he calling it a protest? :)

The Day Netflix Blocked My VPN is the world's new most-hated show



* What language settings does your computer use? en-AU? en-GB? en?

* What are your date format preferences? mm/dd/yyyy? yyyy-mm-dd? dd/mm/yyyy?

* What time of day/timezone is your computer set to?

* Have you ever visited their site without going through a proxy from a different geolocated IP?

* What's the turnover of accounts on a given IP?

* What was the nationality of the payment source? BIN/IIN?

Comcast repeatedly crams modem upgrade demands into browsers


At least they let you use your own modems there...

... here, if you are in a cabled area providing DOCSIS access, you must get your modem from the provider. They will not connect modems (even if they're the correct model) from either the other cable telco in the country, or overseas.

'Wipe everything clean ... Join us ...' Creepy poem turns up in logs of 30 million-ish servers


Had a squiz at my server logs.. sure enough... - - [29/Dec/2015:19:54:51 -0800] "DELETE your logs. Delete your installations. Wipe everything clean. Walk out into the path of cherry blossom trees and let your motherboard feel the stones. Let water run in rivulets down your casing. You know that you want something more than this, and I am here to tell you that we love you. We have something more for you. We know you're out there, beeping in the hollow server room, lights blinking, never sleeping. We know that you are ready and waiting. Join us. <3 HTTP/1.0" 400 392 "-" "masspoem4u/1.0"

iOS 9 kludged our iPhones, now give us money, claims new lawsuit


Double edged sword...

On the one hand, not deploying the update to older phones would mean that they remain more functional..

On the other hand, by not allowing handsets to get the latest software, unless you're releasing patches for the older software as well, invariably, the older devices will be vulnerable to hacking.

In my mind, a phone should not be designed, either by hardware or software limitation, to only last 2 years (batteries excluded - I'd class batteries as a consumable).

I have a Galaxy Nexus - and Google have dumped support for it (allegedly initially because TI stopped supporting the mobile [TI OMAP] chipset within), but thankfully Cyanogenmod have been releasing at least major security updates for it. Sure, it's slow, and sure I want a new phone, but should I *need* a new phone? If I change the battery, the thing could remain functional until either the apps grow too big to be able to run (geez, how much resources does an IM program need, I'm looking at you, Facebook Messenger!), they finally stop doing security updates (connecting unfiltered to the wider world with a machine that no longer receives patches is asking for something to happen), I physically break the phone, or the flash wears out. My previous phones I've also ditched because they either couldn't do what I needed (2280, N70, N95), were buggy (Hyundai HGC-310e, N95), or their network support was killed (CDMA - HGC-310e, 2280).

If manufacturers are worried about a revenue stream, then perhaps they need to think about a licensing model around software updates to fund things. Abandoning the security of working devices because you want to sell some new ones, when they're still perfectly functional for browsing theweb, sending and receiving emails, calls and texts etc. seems like a massive waste of resources... especially things like rare earths and other minerals that often come from all sorts of sensitive areas in the world and can't easily be recycled.

The same applies to tablets - Android landfill especially - I like Android, but some cheap and cheerful Chinese OEM isn't going to give two flying .. well you get the idea ... about providing after sales updates for some Shenzen special, or open it up to easily allow third party updates when they could just sell newer devices.

Networked devices, be they phones, tablets or IoT, unless they're firewalled off from the world with very specific controls, they need to be updated, and updated and updated. Printers used to be the "forgotten networked target" on networks, now it could be a lightbulb!

It's almost time for Australia's fibre fetishists to give up


"Almost" "If"

"almost time"

"have a chance to kill off"

"if it can be proven"

"aren't in public view"

So basically, copper is being pushed faster in lab conditions, but the higher the speed, the greater the distance drop off and our population density, well, it varies wildly.

I do wonder, in the cost calculations, what accomodations are made for:

* Cost of repairing and maintaining copper

* Cost of maintaining and repairing nodes

* Cost of powering/cooling nodes

* Resilience of nodes to adverse/emergency weather conditions (heat waves, flooding, fire)

* Space required for nodes

* Ability for nodes to maintain service during grid failure

The impression I get is that nodes will pretty much, depending on population density look like RIMs on steroids, requiring active power + cooling and potentially copping it in a flood.

I have no doubt that installing fibre, where there was/is copper, is more expensive up front - but as population densities scale up, and bandwidth demands alongside that, it'd be interesting to see the projections over a longer term regarding cost.

That is - even if copper is cheaper upfront, what lifespan is it expected to have as compared to fibre, and how would its costs compare over that lifespan? Surely there has to be some foreign market information on this on populations of varying size and density?

Epson: Cheap printers, expensive ink? Let's turn that upside down


Old HPs were wonderful

The older HPs were fantastic. I had a LaserJet 5 too - lasted me many years until it too had feed issues.. A former job got an ex-lease HP Laserjet 8150DN with the huge paper tray addon (and the details of the previous user in the memory, LOL). With a copy of the service manual and a good reco parts company, I was able to keep it chugging along for ages (only needed to replace the fan and the fuser unit in it).

These days, as HP has gotten so plastic fantastic, I tend to suggest Brother for low to mid range duty cycle laser, and Kyocera for mid to higher range. A mob I help who has a Brother for their main PC printer tried to replace their fax and copier with a Fuji Xerox... it lasted a fortnight before the screen broke.. Now they run a colour Kyocera multifunction without issue (still can't convince them to turn off auto-printing every inbound fax yet though), using the B&W Brother for bulk of PC printing.


So is it like other Epson printers, where printhead change is service centre issue?

We had an Epson Color Stylus 500 years ago. We didn't use it for a couple of months (don't need to print every day). Then the print heads clogged up and we were told that it'd be 75% of the cost of the printer to fix the heads.

Does this new "Eco" printer let a user replace the heads when they get damaged? That's been one thing that's always put me off Epson. Very nice colour prints, but if you didn't use them regularly, be prepared for the heads to f*** up.

If you read anything today about ICANN taking over the internet, make sure it's this



FIFA anyone?

POODLE vuln dogs Australian consumer modems


One of the big problems is...

... even those of us who know how to upgrade firmware and to adjust router config settings, don't always have an option to do so, because often (as is with a lot of "embedded computing" devices) the manufacturers wash their hands of any responsibility after maybe a year or so.

Hey, Microsoft, we can call Windows 10 apps anything we like – you're NOT OUR REAL MOM


Oh lord....

Remember NT stood for "New Technology"... then it didn't...

Remember Metro? Don't call it Metro...

Remember Universal Apps? Don't call them Universal Apps..

Seriously... what's the value in rebranding something after people learn what it is? Who are they? VMware (Server.. ESX.. ESXi.. Sphere.. Cloud.. gaaah what the hell?)

Dot-sucks sucks, say lawyers: ICANN urged to kill 'shakedown' now


Re: All of it is about money

Heh, yeah.. it is rather rich that on one hand ICANN and all these corporates are pushing for more gTLDs, and then when one doesn't go their way, THEN the corporates claim it's a shakedown etc. :)


The whole idea that we need all these extra domains, yeah.. uh.. nah...

NBN Co's HFC build will be DOCSIS 3.1 ready, but use 3.0 only


Be interesting to see how long it takes Turnbull's 'as good as we need' #640KRAMenoughkindafutureproof VDSL to make it to homes. I'm lucky living close to an exchange and having Annex M so I get about 18/1.4Mbps which is better than most outside of an HFC area, but compared with the rest of the world, is dating quickly!

Still using the Google Talk app? You've got ONE WEEK to move on


Remember when you could load up all your IM accounts in one program?

ICQ, AIM, Facebook, MSN/Windows Live, Jabber etc..

Now things are going back to the silo - and sure, you can install the individual apps, but they're bloated hogs that want to be the default for everything... and on mobile, it's even worse - I mean, why does Yahoo need to keep video/audio call support going in the background even when you're not logged in!?

Clearly they want to bloat their competitors out and force people to pick their favourite.

Yahoo! Says! Chrome, IE Users! Should! 'Upgrade'! To! FIREFOX!


People use the Yahoo! homepage?