* Posts by GBE

571 publicly visible posts • joined 22 Sep 2010


Tesla chair begs investors to bless Musk's billions or face an Elon exodus


Re: "The thrust is that retaining Musk's extraordinary talent takes extraordinary compensation"

You forgot

[6] Goes into perpetual paranoid right-wing wacko mode — offending and driving away the main demographic that's buying electric vehicles.

I've certainly crossed Tesla of my list of cars to look at, and a large part of that decision is based on wanting in no way to provide support for or be associated with Elon Musk.

Boffins suggest astronauts should build a Wall of Death on the Moon


The assertion that Neanderthal and human hybrids were infertile is incorrect,

Look again. The claim was that they were interfertile.

Unintended acceleration leads to recall of every Cybertruck produced so far


"Acceleration" is change in velocity - in either direction. Sorry for being a jerk

No, jerk is change in acceleration (third derivative of position with respect to time).

Sorry for being a pedant.

(Not really)

FTX crypto-crook Sam Bankman-Fried gets 25 years in prison


I'd happily do a week inside if it meant I could have over $6 million to burn through

When sent to prison for fraud/theft you don't get to keep what you stole. His sentence also includes the requirement to forfeit more than $11 billion.

You'd spend the rest of your life trying to repay that $6 million.

Hyperfluorescent OLEDs promise more efficient displays that won't make you so blue


Re: lasers?

Will this help build a more efficient laser rifle?

I hope so. Efforts to improve the efficiency of the shark have failed miserably.

SoftIron rolls its own server virt stack to join the 'let's get VMware' crowd


It means the bits squirt out of the ground on their own — you don't have to use a pump.

No, wait...

Truck-to-truck worm could infect – and disrupt – entire US commercial fleet


Re: There's a very simple fix that can't be bypassed

Great idea, the only minor snag with it is that CAN is a bi-directional bus that uses differential signaling over two wires only so there is no dedicated TX pin as such and cutting the connection would isolate the ELDs from the CAN network thus rendering it completely unable to monitor the vehicle systems.

If the transceiver is separate from the µController, there will be a tx-enable and/or separate rx/tx data pins, so it it should be possible to cut a trace on the board and turn it into a rx-only device.

If the transceiver is integrated into the µController (didn't used to be a thing, especially for automotive), then that's not possible.

Yacht dealer to the stars attacked by Rhysida ransomware gang


Re: It's hard to feel sorry for some victims

Why, do you think it's OK for criminals to attack people as long as the victims are rich?

No I do not.

I just don't feel very sorry for these particular victims. My apologies if that wasn't clear in my original post.

Whether something is illegal or not and whether the offenders should be pursued or not have nothing to do with my personal level of sympathy for victim. I guess that's how some people must think, though...


It's hard to feel sorry for some victims

I have nothing but contempt for ransomware crooks (I refuse to use any word with a "cyber" prefix). However, it is hard to feel sorry for victims like the ones in this case.

Swift enters safe mode over gyro issue while NASA preps patch to shake it off


Re: Sensor gyros or reaction-mass gyros?

the kind used as angular reaction-mass

"reaction wheels" is the phrase I was trying (and failing) to recall.


Sensor gyros or reaction-mass gyros?

I assume the 3 gyros being discussed (one of which is wearing out), are the kind used as angular reaction-mass, and not the kind used to measure angular position/speed?

An engine that can conjure thrust from thin air? We speak to the designer


Re: Sorry to pour cold water on a plasma jet

Well, his statement "...because you are tens times closer to the earth compared to geostationary satellites in low Earth orbit." is, to quote Wolfgang Pauli, "This isn't right. This isn't even wrong." So it makes one wonder what else is ill-conceived.

My reaction exactly. I stopped reading at that point.

And kudos for the Pauli quote.

I'm not too keen on referring to air as "fuel" in this context either. To me, that implies air is the source of the energy used to produce thrust. It isn't, it's just reaction mass (or working mass).

Attacks on UK fiber networks mount: Operators beg govt to step in


Re: Transportation

Or Texas

Too cruel — surely the courts would never allow that.

HP print rental service seeks more users to become subscription addicts


My 20-year old LaserJet would like to apoligize...

My twenty-something year old LaserJet would like to apologize on behalf of its parent company and state that's its truly embarrassed at what HP has turned into.

$238 for a toner cartridge. As if.

Reminder: Infostealer malware is coming for your ChatGPT credentials


If they don't contain username/password pairings, how are they used?

... these are stealer logs containing credentials, not username/password pairings

I don't understand — if the logs don't contain username/password pariings, what are the "credentials" and how are they useful?

US accuses Army vet cyber-Casanova of sharing Russia-Ukraine war secrets


I wonder how he got caught

It's obvious how you get caught posting classified info to a public forum (like Jack Teixeira). But none of the articles I've seen about Slater mention how he ended up getting caught. Presumably the "Ukrainian woman" with which he was corresponding didn't turn him in.

Tiny Core Linux 15 stuffs modern computing in a nutshell


Re: investigating whether it can turn some geriatric laptops into useful tools once again.

A small distro and minicom...

Nonsense! C-Kermit is the only real option!

I'd rater use Putty than Minicom...

That home router botnet the Feds took down? Moscow's probably going to try again


Ernestine would be proud

TalkTalk lost a customer that day.

Ernestine would be truly proud of such customer service.

"We don't care. We don't have to. We're the phone company."

Persistent memory to replace DRAM, but it could take a decade


That's what DRAM is

couldn't you just add some capacitors or something to hold the charge on the DRAM and thus preserve its state, at least for a short-time

Capacitors that preserve state for a short time: That's exactly what DRAM already is.

You can increase the time it can preserve state by increasing the size of the capacitors. Right now, that time is 10s of milliseconds. Want to make it 10s of seconds? Multiply size (therfore cost) by 1000. Want to make it 10s of years?

Boeing-backed air taxi upstart Wisk plans to fly you across town at UberX prices by 2030


Re: Usual problems

What's the problem in putting thought into swift, efficient public transport?

One big problem in many areas is low population density:

US: 37 people per km²

England: 400+ people per km²

Netherlands: 500+ people per km²

In the state of Montana (triple the area of England) it's less than 3 people per km²

Americans wake to widespread AT&T cellular outages


Re: Towers

The towers are just metal. Yes, they're owned by tower companies, but the towers themselves (as long as they're standing), and who owns them, have no effect on the cellular service provided through the equipment bolted to them and in the shelters at their bases. THAT is owned by the cellular providers, who pay rent to the tower companies for space on the towers.

That's how it worked yonks ago when I designed cellsite radio gear. I'm VERY skeptical that it has since changed so that now companies like American Tower own and run the actual radios and telephone networks — and that Verizon, ATT, and T-Mobile are just reselling access/minutes/GB the way that Cricket et alia do.

Cellular network operators have been using rented antenna and equipment space on/in other people's towers and buildings since the very beginning back in 1980.

Worried about the impending demise of Windows 10? Google wants you to give ChromeOS Flex a try


Re: What does "stream an app" mean?

I *think* it means running the desktop, video and audio on a remote machine and streaming it to you. In the old days these were called thin and thick clients. Citrix was a big player.

Is that how the *-365 apps work!? I always assumed they were written in JavaScript than ran in the browser like the various Google apps (mail, docs, sheets, etc.).


What does "stream an app" mean?

And then there are the apps. This part is trickier to overcome, and ignoring the Microsoft 365-shaped elephant in the room is difficult. [...]

Google's solution? Streaming, of course! Stream those apps to your ChromeOS Flex desktop.

OK, I know I'm old, but now I'm completely lost...

I thought the *-365 apps were web-based and only required a subscription and a browser (like Chrome) to run?

And what does "streaming an app to your desktop" mean?

Japan's lunar lander is dying before our eyes after setting down on Moon


Re: My hat’s off to Japan

“It is possible to commit no mistakes and still lose. That is not a weakness. That is life.”

It's a bit like poker. Losing the pot doesn't mean you played the hand incorrectly — and just because you won the pot, it doesn't mean you made the right decisions.

Windows Server 2022 patch is breaking apps for some users


I thought the article was about Windows

Then again, it's also reasonable to expect that hugely popular applications such as Chrome that worked perfectly well before an update would continue working afterward.

Eh? I thought we were talking about Windows...

Microsoft pulls the plug on WordPad, the world's least favorite text editor


Re: Wait long enough...

There doesn't appear to be any reason to remove WordPad. It's like a sociopath pausing on their way to the shops and shooting someone's dog. Because it was there.
Except this particular sociopath owns the pet shop where everybody gets their dogs...

Crypto-crook Sam Bankman-Fried spared a second trial


Re: "a line of credit of up to $65 billion dollars"

Bitcoin is unrelated to stable coins, really. Just like it's unheated to any other currency,

If it's unheated, does that make it cold cash?

Intel's PC chip ship is sinking with Arm-ada on the horizon


Let's not forget the iAPX432 debacle

When discussing Intel's notable failures, it would be remiss to omit the iAPX432. It was the 32-bit processor that was supposed to replace the 16-bit 8086 family of processors.

It flopped so hard it was detected by seismographs the world over.

It was ultra-CISC with all sorts of high-level constructs directly implemented in an instruction set designed explicity for running code from high-level languages like Pascal and Ada.

However, it turned out to be way slower at running real programs than the 80286 that was already in use widely when the iAPX432 was released.

Word turns 40: From 'new kid on the block' to 'I can't believe it's not bloatware'


Re: Drivers

>> Seven megabytes is a LOT for a 1984 DOS program.

> Rather more than would have fitted into RAM.

Read it again. That was 7MB of source code.

Back in the day it wasn't unusual that all the source code for a largish program wouldn't fit it RAM. There was no reason it needed to.

Window Maker Live: When less is more, but more is also ... more?


What window manager is that?

Window Maker Live, intended to show off one minimalistic window manager,

I re-read the article a couple times, but I'm still missing something. What window manager is it showing off?

There's one mention that IceWM was born in 1997, the same year that WindowMaker was born. Are we to conclude that WindowMaker was created to show off IceWM? Is IceWM currently the default window manager in Window Maker?

Scammers use India’s real-time payment system to siphon off money, send it to China


Re: It's popular because it is easy to use.

-- police crime effectively --

I parsed that initially as Noun Verb Adverb, and it took me quite a while to figure out it was meant to be Verb Noun Adverb.

There's a legal podcast I listen to regularly where one of the hosts likes to colloquially use "crime" as a verb. Actually it's usually "criming" used as a gerund, but apparently my brain has adjusted and now considers crime to be either noun or verb.

Look ma, no fans: Mini PC boasts slimline solid-state active cooling system


Re: How is it solid state?

A video projector chip has millions of little mirrors moving at 100khz for years

Why would they be moving at 100KHz?

TI's DLP docs claim the mirrors can move at "up to 10KHz".


what could possibly go wrong with having a megavolt PSU close to a 5v processor.

Indeed. And nobody has used 5V processors for decades. These days, I/O voltages typically max out at 3.3V (e.g. PCIe) and DDR RAM uses 2.5V I/O. CPU cores are usually running at 1.2V to 1.5V.


Re: How is it solid state?

My thoughts exactly. Something that wiggles back and forth is "solid state" while something that spins isn't?

And silent it is not.

The quoted value of 21dbA isn't even that quiet. There are plenty CPU fans that are well below that [though they are probably larger].

More X subscription tiers could spell doom for free access as biz bleeds cash


Philippines and New Zealand seem odd choice to experiment with charging for subscriptions to stop bots, are they particular hot spots of bot activity?

I've heard people complain about all the sheep on Twitter, but I thought it was a metaphor...

First Brexit, now X-it: Musk 'considering' pulling platform from EU over probe


We should all be so lucky.

Elon Musk is said to be toying with the idea of withdrawing access to X in the European Union

OK, now Brexit must surely seem like a mistake...

D-Link clears up 'exaggerations' around data breach


Why would D-Link have end-user data?

I've bought a fair amount of D-Link kit over the years, but I can't think of any way that D-Link could have obtained any useful data about me. Does Amazon or Best Buy or whoever supply buyer data to product manufacturers?

2023 World Solar Challenge entrant welcomes clouds – not the fluffy white ones


Re: Pedants view on networks

*A* CANbus? Isn't that what we might call "a network"?

Yes, the 'N' in CAN stands for "Network". [And CAN definitely is a network]

But "network" in IT-speak presumably means WiFi and/or Ethernet and IP to most readers.

NASA reschedules Boeing's first crewed Starliner flight for mid-April 2024


Still pretending

It's nice that people are still pretending that "Boeing's first crewed Starliner flight" is a real thing that might actually happen. Otherwise there would be lots of unemployed Boingers. And I bet a lot of them have children.

"wont somebody think of the children..."

SBF on trial: The Python code that allegedly let Alameda hedge fund spend people's FTX deposits


Good on them for using Decimal

I'm glad to see that they were using Decimal rather than floats for keeping track of their pretend money.

Even crooks should have standards.

Make-me-root 'Looney Tunables' security hole on Linux needs your attention


Re: Puzzled....

No sign of GLIB_TUNABLES anywhere!

Did you try looking for GLIBC_TUNABLES?

glib and glibc are completely different, unrelated libraries.

'Small monthly payment' only thing that stands between X and bot chaos, says Musk


No golden eggs.

In short, it looks like he's going to voluntarily kill the goose that is laying the golden eggs.

Except it's _not_ laying the golden eggs.

Building Excel-like UI for Uber's China ops exposed Microsoft calculation quirks


Re: I hear attack lawyers straining at their leashes!

So he admits to using code that he developed whilst working at a former employer for a later employer, and then posting that to GitHub. He's a braver person than I am.

It's OK because it was based on code he took with him when he left his previous employer?

Are there really employers where you are allowed to take product code with you when you leave?!?!

Bank of Ireland outage sees customers queue for 'free' cash – or maybe any cash


Re: The rivet!


Though, IIRC, the invention of Levi's jeans (with seams reiforced by rivets key points) didn't happen until after the gold rush (in California) was over.


Shovels, food, and clothing

In 1853 a Bavarian immigrant named Levi Strauss opened a dry goods store in the midst of the California gold rush selling supplies to prospectors. You know what product later made him famous...

Biden urged to completely cripple AI chips to China


Re: But I *Liked* the Z80! ...

If I recall correctly it had two register sets that were (or could) be swapped during interrupt service speeding up ISRs.

Yep. But you could also use them to implement very low overhead cooperative co-routines. [That slowed down ISRs a bit compared to using the second register set for ISRs, but coroutines were pretty cool.] One of the cellular phone designs I worked on back around '84 or so used a Z80 clone and that trick. IIRC, it was a joint venture with a british company -- Racal-something[1]. The cell channel limits/spacing were slightly different between the British and US versions...

[1] Vedic, Redac, ???

One of the cell-site radio designs I worked on at that same time used the Z8000, and that kicked ass!

Judge denies HP's plea to throw out all-in-one printer lockdown lawsuit


Re: Epson

Damn. My LaserJet 1320 is from 2004, so it's not old enough — I'll have to throw it out.

Still works perfectly (though I did have to buy one tonor cartridge about 10 years ago).

4 in 5 Chromebooks sold to US students in Q2 as demand rises


Based on what I've seen of chromebooks used by elementary/middle school kids, I wouldn't spend much time worrying about the hardware outlasting the software support. I bet that most don't last more than 2 years, and almost none make it past 3 years,

Post-Brexit tariffs on cross EU-UK electrical vehicle imports still going ahead


Re: Fuck business

Just to extend that slightly: We're still affected by EU regulations directly or indirectly, and now we have no control at all over those regulations. This situation was inevitable, entirely predictable, and does not benefit the UK at all.

Not only was it predictable; it was predicted -- loudly and repeatedly in almost those exact words.

SpaceX says, sure, Starship blew up but you can forget about the rest of that lawsuit


Re: Read the fine print!!

... although you may arrive at quite a high velocity and in several pieces.

Actually, I think you'll find that the terminal velocity for small bits of charred meat and bone isn't all that fast.