* Posts by DrGoon

48 publicly visible posts • joined 25 Feb 2011

OpenAI could be valued up to $90 billion if deal to sell employee shares closes


Plot twist

The investors are a network of AIs.

Free software pioneer Richard Stallman is battling cancer


Since he's here in the US, I hope he not only beats it but that it doesn't bankrupt him.

IT bloke: Crooks stole my bikes after cycling app blabbed my address


Re: Common sense

My solution is to attach cell phones to all the stray cats in the area and have then all share the same cycling app account. This does of course mean that for the decoy to work effectively one has to cycle at night, but it's a small price to pay.

NASA announcement of MAJOR MARS DISCOVERY imminent: WHAT can it be?


It's liquid water

Presence of Lujendra Ojha of Georgia Institute of Technology and Alfred McEwen of HiRISE camera on the panel somewhat gives the game away.

Feds: Bloke 'HACKED PLANE controls' – from his PASSENGER seat


They aren't

However, now that you're willing to accept that they might be, you'll offer no resistance when the TSA decline to allow you to fly with anything electronic or that might be used to permit or hamper the passage of electrons.

Pass the Lollipop: Google creepily warms to body contact with Android lock function


Movie idea

Due to a faulty accelerometer the protagonist has to drive a bus at 50 miles per hour in order to prevent the phone from locking.

Yes our NAS boxen have a 0day, says Seagate: we'll fix it in May


Re: Upstream Patched Years Ago?

Somebody may well have noticed these problems in the Seagate NASes long ago - it may have been in their interests to say nothing.

Siri, you're fired: Microsoft Cortana's elbows into iOS, Android


Re: Yet to see

"Add to that the voice recognition is dependent on a data connection to more powerful servers to turn your abhorrent shrieking into recognisable language"

Eleven. Eleven. Eleven!

Apple LIGHTSABERS to feature in The Force Awakens


Re: Warranty void if seal is broken

Exactly - and it is this lack of user replaceable power source that has resulted in older lightsabers being more spitty and analog. Luke neglected to purchase the optional JediCare and hasn't had a chance to take his in to the Genius cantina.

ATTENTION SETI scientists! It's TOO LATE: ALIENS will ATTACK in 2049


Re: Death by Alien Cockup ...

Unfortunately Gliesean 581c bacteria and Terran bacteria will probably decide to form a bacterial social media site, and, failing to gain momentum in the bacterial social media market will decide to eject a bacto guffpulse at HD 40307g.

Demon Internet goes TITSUP: Outage borks ancient ISP


Re: Ah that's why I couldn't get onto CIX today

I wonder if there was an outage notification in tenner.a.month?

David Cameron: I'm off to the US to get my bro Barack to ban crypto – report


Re: Putting locks on your doors to be banned

It could also be extended to save taxpayer money on having police stations. Depending on who had the best bacon butties and cups of tea (British donut and coffee equivalents) a "private" home could be selected as the day's squad room.

SURPRISE: Norks' Linux distro has security vulns


Re: Impressive computing power shown in that picture

I didn't know that the Microsoft Trackball was compatible with a Mellotron.

El Reg Redesign - leave your comment here.



I assume this site design came free with some discount web site authoring tool that you got at PC World.

WHITE HOUSE network DOWN: Nation-sponsored attack likely


Strategic context

When reading stories that are sourced from unnamed parties, it is worth considering the strategic value of the 'news'. Once considered in the context of our current position with Russia, this intentional leak reads instead as an unsubtlle warning.

Silicon Valley scrooges paid staff $1.21 an hour in a 122-hour week


Re: There is more to this story...

Bevnonymous Coward - was the "very healthy bonus" in fact the $5019 per employee that you owed in back wages and liquidated damages?

Will.i.am gets CUFFED as he announces his new wristjob, the PULS


Re: 4kW of D.A.F.

I was dismayed that we will not be seeing will.i.am tanz den Mussolini.

What's happened since Beijing's hacker unit was exposed? Nothing


Re: This is different how?

Let's not pretend that the US is a different sort of nanny state. Here's the attorney general Eric Holder: “When a child is in danger, law enforcement needs to be able to take every legally available step to quickly find and protect the child and to stop those that abuse children. It is worrisome to see companies thwarting our ability to do so."


Or FBI Director James Comey: "The notion that someone would market a closet that could never be opened -- even if it involves a case involving a child kidnapper and a court order -- to me does not make any sense."


Or John J. Escalante, chief of detectives for Chicago’s PD: "Apple will become the phone of choice for the pedophile."


China hopes home-grown OS will oust Microsoft


Re: Laugh if you want

And yet they are going to start with Linux and work from there. Those who cannot remember reflections of trusting trust can be trusted to trust that which they shouldn't:


The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal


Re: They've got you...

No need to make the collar if you can make them bend the knee.

Kate Bush: Don't make me HAVE CONTACT with your iPHONE


There are IR (hot) filters in most digital cameras, however in most cases they are fairly weak and designed to block the levels of near visible IR light expected in the environment. Shining an intense IR beam at a camera fitted with a typical filter will still cause enough glare to effectively defeat it. We can expect few people without photo passes to be bringing in full sized SLRs with strong hot filters and the ability to adjust exposure compensation, so bathing the audience in a wash of intense IR light for a couple of hours should work. The lawsuits for retinal burns and corneal ulcers may be unwelcome however.

Philip K Dick 'Nazi alternate history' story made into TV series


Re: alternate reality??

"What are we missing?"

The irony of the giant Amazon corporation taking on the role of the Wyndam-Matson Corporation.

Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?


Re: Promises

Per "Scotland's Future" published by the Scottish Government:

"We plan that British citizens habitually resident in Scotland on independence will be considered Scottish citizens. This will include British citizens who hold dual citizenship with another country. Scottish born British citizens currently living outside of Scotland will also be considered Scottish citizens."

That's the day one proposition, which is vastly more inclusive (people are one of Scotland's best exports) than you've asserted. Going on:

"Following independence, other people will be able to apply for Scottish citizenship. For example, citizenship by descent will be available to those who have a parent or grandparent who qualifies for Scottish citizenship. Those who have a demonstrable connection to Scotland and have spent at least ten years living there at some stage, whether as a child or as an adult, will also have the opportunity to apply for citizenship. Migrants on qualifying visas will also have the option of applying for naturalisation as a Scottish citizen."

Regarding dual citizenship:

"The UK allows dual citizenship for British citizens. If a British citizen acquires citizenship and a passport of another country, this does not affect their British citizenship, right to hold a British passport or right to live in the UK. The Scottish Government will also allow dual citizenship. It will be for the rest of the UK to decide whether it allows dual UK/Scottish citizenship, but we expect the normal rules to extend to Scottish citizens."

There's no reason to expect that the UK would not extend dual citizenship to Scottish citizens formerly citizens of the UK, however it's probably fair to assume taht this would be a bargaining point that may cost Scotland a few claims at the negotiating table. That's part of the reason that Salmond et. al. have to make rather egregiously padded claims - the negiotiations will be... interesting.

HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert


Re: DIagnostic?

Apple does a good deal of its business with 'enterprise IT departments' behind the closed doors of confidential meetings that are protected by legally binding non-disclosure agreements. What they sell to one 'enterprise IT department' may not be the same as what they sell to another 'enterprise IT department'. It's quite possible that the secret utilities buried in the iOS are for the use of one 'enterprise IT department' and that they feel compelled to make them generally available due to the nature of 'bring your own device' policies within that enterprise.

Of course it could also well be the case that the 'enterprise IT department' in question is that which serves 'the corporation' better known as a three letter agency.

When the robot rebellion comes, this Jibo droid will BORE you to death


The network interface and APIs will allow it to connect to remotely operated vehicles and weapons systems, so I think it's good to go come the machine rebellion.

What a whopper, LG: Feast your eyes on this 77-inch bendy TV


Re: What's the focal length?

It's a zoom.

"Users can adjust the bending radius of 5,000mm with a remote controller.."


So that's down to 2500mm focal length.

Israel develops wireless-malware-injection-by-smartmobe tool


Occam's Round

This article was probably not intended as disinformation, and is simply the product of technologically illiterate journos who are unable to comprehend what is being 'researched'. Since Professor Elovici recently published "Exploiting simultaneous usage of different wireless interfaces for security and mobility" it seems likely that a cellular network was used to compromise the mobile phone which then executed code that used a WiFi or Bluetooth network to compromise a computer that was not connected to the Internet. The hungover hack dreamed up some crazy nonsense and asked a few questions, got a few nerd-speak repies that they didn't understand and made up a load of tosh that they thought that the boffins had confirmed. The copy was emailed to the editor and our content farmer was down at the pub in time for opening.

So you reckon Nokia-wielding Microsoft can't beat off Apple?


Re: "Sadly, there's no word to mean "a Linux computer" :)"

When the mass market for personal computer users vanishes and almost everybody is using next years landfill fondleslab, the term for a Linux computer will become 'computer'.

Look out, FCC: R.E.M., Aerosmith, Jello Biafra, 57 others join net neutrality crusade


Use the force

The simple solution is for companies that respect network neutrality to reject peering agreements with those who do not. The result will be an internet of major media companies that has at best a slow pipe to The Internet.

Friends don't let friends use Internet Explorer – advice from US, UK, EU


Re: That's all folks...

You can hope but that's likely the case with every large insurance company. Large swathes of the Fortune 500 haven't yet adjusted to the new speed at which IT must upgrade or patch in the post mainframe world. If they were capable of doing IT at today's pace would cloud providers have so many customers?

Bugger the jetpack, where's my 21st-century Psion?


I agree with Liam that there is an untargeted niche waiting to be properly exploted here. Bluetooth keyboards attached to minor fondleslabs are what we're getting by with today, but it is clear that something more elegant and convenient is possible. I don't think it needs to be priced near unknown brand fondleslabs to be a success - the (limited) market can certainly support a well made device with an Apple price tag initially. Depending on how well it is executed it could survive past the rise of the inevitable knock-offs.

Sensation: Chinese Jade Rabbit FOUND ON MOON


Re: Most

To be fair, technology from the Americans was a prize of war. There may be a few more billionaires in the US, but they're playing for highly outsourced multinational corporations, not the real home team.

Google patent: THROAT TATTOO with lie-detecting mobe microphone built-in


Forward thinking

Google is doing the right thing from a corporate perspective. The world is headed this way anyhow, so they may as well get the patents in for the technology that we'll all be compelled to use. They're keeping the more sinister and evil stuff under wraps for now lest we think that they're not jolly nice people.

Star Wars revival secret: This isn't the celluloid you're looking for


Re: Future Digital

Most movies are not shot in 8K. Most movies are still shot on 35mm film stock and scanned to digital. Movies shot on digital cameras are still the minority, and while the major studios using digital are using amazing equipment such as Red Epic MX and Arri Alexa, you'll be sad to hear that neither of these incredible camera systems yet support 8K.


Report: Secret British spy base in Middle East taps region's internet


Re: Snowden denies working with independent

So the UK government is leaking information that can more reasonably be claimed to be putting lives at risk in order to have a reason to tar Snowden as a dangerous terrorist rather than a whistleblower? Plausible. If that's the case then, this story is of interest because it suggests to us that:

1. The well-known monitoring base in Cyprus is now surplus to requirements and the UK government plans to close it, likely resulting in the loss of jobs in the region.

2. The future closure of the Cyprus base will be blamed on the increased risk which Snowden's revelations have placed British operatives under.

3. There must already be a new joint monitoring installation in the region which likely uses fewer personnel to maintain. US base in Riyadh perhaps.

In other words, this is a twofer.

'But we like 1 Direction!' Rock gods The Who fend off teen Twitter hate mob


Re: Thank fuck

"On another note it's clearly obvious there will be no follow up by the Police"

Presumably because neither of the other two former members would have anything to do with working with Sting these days.

NSA to world+dog: We're only watching 1.6% of internet, honest


I wouldn't discount the porn or the Beyonce videos, only their duplicates. When any new video or image is uploaded, that is 'touched by the hand of NSA' but when it is downloaded, only the TCP headers (or 'metadata') are kept. Those are freebies and don't count towards the 'data' total. The 1,826 Petabytes of information consists largely of duplicate client requests for previously 'touched' data. The NSA likely only needs to 'touch' 29 Petabytes in order to capture everything - every header, every porn file, every mundane image upload on every image sharing site as well as the more savory web pages, emails, spam (just one copy of each) and all. The only duplicates that the NSA are collecting in their 29 Petabyte Total Internet Trawl are the files that they were unable to determine were duplicates at the time of interception.

Anything that the NSA don't have from the Internet remains uncollected only as the result of an error, and that will be fixed and collected at a later date.

Notorious Mexican drug kingpin nabbed thanks to drones and spyware


Searching for "Locksys GPS" found a Chinese supplier of cheap GPS tracking devices. If the price was in the tens of millions then at least many hundreds of thousands of devices were involved. If GPS tracking were quietly installed in every Mexican military vehicle in a target area and this gang's membership included many members of the armed forces (as suggested in a number of articles) then that may be how they got the GPS onto "the gang's vehicle".

Think your smutty Snapchats can't be saved by dorks? Think again

Black Helicopters

Re: Old, sage advice

Don't put anything on the Internet that you wouldn't like domestic and foreign intelligence services collecting, sending to the special operations department of any other agency or company that they like and then deliberately conflating into some supposed crime or media sanctioned taboo in order to repress you societally.

100,000+ Earthlings star in 'reality TV contest' for ONE-WAY ticket to MARS


I bet it would be funnier if there was also a tiger who had been named David Bowie due to clerical error.

Limbaugh: If you hate Apple then you're a lefty blog-o-twat hipster


Attention - it's what Limbaugh wants.

Thanks for being an enabler, Reg.

WAR ON PORN: UK flicks switch on 'I am a pervert' web filters


family-friendly filters

Note that the vaccuous buffoon suggests that "the settings to install family-friendly filters will be automatically selected".

Not pedo filters, not rape filters, not even porn filters. Familiy-friendly ones. So, just like the default British PAYG internet service, all future British Internet will protected from sites that promote the drinking of beer, contain risque humour, discuss the occult or enable people to meet up to date one another. That will be the future of the Internet in Britiain unless you sign a piece of paper acknowledging that you are a filthy pervert and deserve to be subjugated by the rich in any depraved manner that they choose.

How the clammy claws of Novell NetWare were torn from today's networks


History as experienced by the average forty-something IT boke?

Novell's acendency didn't happen "before the Internet" nor was Novell the first widely available LAN technology. Novell's demise wasn't as a result of Windows NT 3.51. As others have noted, DOS-based Windows (as early as WfW 3.1) broke the Netware stranglehold in very many small office environments. Larger enterprises were already using either SNA or TCP/IP and were paying dearly for the pleasure on PC systems. Novell's primary failure was a blinkered desire to move into the lucrative enterprise systems market while failing to acknowledge that their balance sheet depended on the small office environment that they dominated. Like most companies in the PC world, they also failed to capitalise on the growth of the Internet among small business users. Not a bad article overall, but perhaps a little subjective.

Disney shutters Star Wars game unit with 200 layoffs


I felt a small disturbance in the Force...

as if dozens of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something mildly unpleasant has happened.

Six things a text editor must do - or it's a one-way trip to the trash


Re: I'll stick with my Mac

The problem with commercial text editors is that they tend to be developed by small teams or individuals who achieve the bulk of the original requirements quickly, add many of the features requested by the early adopters over the next couple of years and then grow bored of maintaining the product or get more lucrative offers based on their coding prowess. This results in editors that do some things in a novel or elegant way and thus attract large followings (the things that inspired the developers to write another bloody text editor), do many other required things sufficiently well only to stagnate and eventually fail to be maintained.

On my Macs, I use Textmate, a great little Mac-only editor that passes all of Verity's tests, has multi-line editing and which is faster than Sublime at editing huge log files. However, Textmate development waned some time ago. Sublime is likely the way forward, but inevitably in another few years it will be in the same place, and the next new commercial text editor will be required if one wants the latest clever thing, a strong community of people creating addons that I'm too lazy to make myself and bug fixes so that the damned thing will run on the latest upgrade cycle from one infinite loop.

Kudos to Bare Bones for keeping BBEdit development ticking along. While it is now outgunned in many ways by newer editors, in terms of support it lives somewhere between the editors that burn so very brightly and the simple system-supported core editors such as vi.

New British tax-cuts-for-patents scheme criticised



I own a patent on this tax process. Ker-ching.

'Replace crypto-couple Alice and Bob with Sita and Rama'


All Greek

Zeus sent his messenger Hermes to rescue Persephone from Hades. Hades convinced Persephone to eat a poison pomegrane from the Underworld, thus preventing her from being fully restored to the heavens. So we have Bob = Zeus, Alice = Persephone with a message carried by the algorithm Hermes that is subverted by Hades inserting his own data Pomegranate. Since everybody in the whole wide world knows this tale it is perfect.

Thunderbolt: A new way to hack Macs


Enable EFI password, would-be luser

On a Mac, enabling the EFI password will disable DMA on Firewire, and provided that Apple don't screw up, this should carry over to Thunderbolt. Apple fixed this vector three years ago. So did Linux (options ohci1394 phys_dma=0). Last I heard Windows was still vulnerable if the Firewire driver is enabled, but others more current with Windows host security may know of mitigation techniques.

For most applications, disabling the computer's DMA has little effect on performance since DMA is still enabled on the rest of the device chain where it is needed.

Thunderbolt DMA is a valid concern and it would certainly be worthwhile for an actual security lab to investigate this when they get their hands on a current generation MacBook Pro, but the source article is worthless fear-mongering based on historical vulnerabilities for which mitigation strategies exist.