* Posts by User McUser

657 posts • joined 6 May 2011


Machine learning gets semi conscious... Waymo, Daimler vow to bring self-driving trucks to American highways

User McUser

Level 4 Automation is insufficient

The partnership aims to build level-four automated trucks, which would use AI to perform all the necessary functions needed to drive autonomously for a whole trip, theoretically. It'll still need a human driver to take over when necessary, for safety and regulatory reasons.

Great, so the safety mechanism for a 16-Ton truck at highway speed is a person who for the last 4 hours has been sleeping, reading a book, watching a movie, or doing who knows what else because the thing drives itself 95% of the time, and is then expected to instantly and reliably take over the split second after the AI goes ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ?

Anything less than Level 5 Autonomous vehicles are unacceptable IMO. I mean, what's the point of a self-driving car if I randomly and unexpectedly have to take over driving due to some sort of emergency that the AI can't handle?

MacOS on Arm talk intensifies: Just weeks from now, Apple to serve up quarantini with Kalamata golive, reportedly

User McUser

"I’ll never forget you, Windows Mobile 6.1."

No matter how much I drink...

The longest card game in the world: Microsoft Solitaire is 30

User McUser

Speaking of OS/2...

The IBM provided version of Solitaire for OS/2 included the extremely helpful menu option "Cheat" - which, as you may have guessed, let you put any card anywhere.

Hooray! It's IT Day! Let's hear it for the lukewarm mugs of dirty water that everyone seems to like so much

User McUser

No opinion...

I just drink whatever comes out of the Nutri-Matic machine...

What do you call megabucks Microsoft? No really, it's not a joke. El Reg needs you

User McUser

If I may humbly suggest...

  • Seattle Desktop Botherers
  • The Great Beige Bloat
  • Sysadmin Job Securers
  • Paterson's Regret (perhaps a bit too obscure?)

It has been 20 years since cybercrims woke up to social engineering with an intriguing little email titled 'ILOVEYOU'

User McUser

Never Learn Anything from History

Windows and Office apps would cheerfully conceal the extensions of known file types

And 20 years later, this is *still* the default setting in Windows for some reason...

Proof-of-concept open-source app can cut'n'paste from reality straight into Photoshop using a neural network

User McUser

Re: Unintended consequences

'Taking a comfort break?'

Christ on a bike. This is an English publication, so let's not despoil it with ugly, squeamishly coy Americanism euphemisms for ordinary everyday things.

As an American, I just wanted to say that have *never* heard this expression before today. But it certainly sounds very "Are you Embarrassed Easily" British.

Now if you excuse me, I have to go pinch a loaf, make an offering to the porcelain throne, take the browns to the super bowl, drop a deuce, unload some timber, and bust a grumpy. Then after all that I have to take a shit.

Square peg of modem won't fit into round hole of PC? I saw to it, bloke tells horrified mate

User McUser

Wrong era?

56k modems were available starting in 1997 so why the hell would some buy a 9600 baud modem in "the late 1990s"?

Perhaps they meant the late 1980s or the early 1990s?

Your phone wakes up. Its assistant starts reading out your text messages. To everyone around. You panic. How? Ultrasonic waves

User McUser

Begs the question...

Why are the microphones in these devices even capable of picking up ultrasonic frequencies?

Even if that's just how a good quality microphone works these days, one would think that in a device intended for human vocal communication that any sounds above 20kHz would be considered useless noise and be removed via a low-pass filter.

The Ghost of Windows 10 Past shrinks back as Microsoft's axeman tiptoes ever closer

User McUser
Big Brother

Re: "1809 update for Windows 10"

Or a boot stamping on a face forever...

Talk about making a rod for your own back: Pot dealer's seized €54m Bitcoins up in smoke after keys thrown out with fishing gear

User McUser

Re: Riddle me this

A Type-II bitcoin rig? Not sure that's what Kardashev had in mind...

We need to make it even easier for UK terror cops to rummage about in folks' phones, says govt lawyer

User McUser

Why is there always a time limit?

especially when counter-terrorism police are working against the clock

Because every single terrorist is a James Bond or 24 villain - they always have a time bomb (of one sort or another) and the only possible way to stop it is to unlock their phone, right?

Since when are laws based on cliches and tropes?

Alan Turing’s OBE medal, PhD cert, other missing items found in super-fan’s Colorado home by agents, says US govt

User McUser

Re: She sounds like a f*****g nutcase.

This case probably tells us more about how our society (or in this case, US society) looks after people with such issues.

I agree that she likely has brain problems but from what little we know it seems she was an otherwise functional adult. How much responsibility does society really have to interfere with the life choices of someone like this? Apart from the theft (obviously), what real harm has she caused herself or others?

With a warehouse of unsold AR goggles, Magic Leap has a brainwave… let’s rebadge ‘em and sell to business!

User McUser

Re: Contacts, anyone?

I suppose if you placed OLEDs on the front of the lenses that maybe-possibly-might could work?

However, being neither an engineer nor physicist (nor even an optometrist) I'm just making a wild guess.

We lose money on repairs, sobs penniless Apple, even though we charge y'all a fortune

User McUser

Actually, they do make money on "Free" Apps

Apple makes none of nothing from the 84 per cent of apps that don’t charge.

Except for the fact that if one wants to put their "free" App into the AppStore, one must be a registered developer - at a cost of US$99 per year!

Watch out! Andromeda, the giant spiral galaxy colliding with our own Milky Way, has devoured several galaxies before

User McUser

My god, it's full of stars...

I can only imagine how amazing the night sky will look 3.99BY from now. It's a shame I'll have to miss it, what with being dead and all...

Sleeping Tesla driver wonders why his car ploughed into 11 traffic cones on a motorway

User McUser

I am curious to know if the car stopped itself after the collisions or if the alleged driver woke up and stopped it manually.

Based on the header pic on the article, the incident appears to have happened in North Carolina (approximately here); read into that what you will.

Not very bright: Apple geniuses spend two weeks, $10,000 of repairs on a MacBook Pro fault caused by one dumb bug

User McUser

I know of at least three people with a Mac Book Pro that use an external display and keyboard to login every day. However these are "Late 2013 Retina" units so maybe they ruined this on the later models?

I say, Eaton boys are flogging spare capacity on data centre UPS systems to keep lights on in Ireland

User McUser

Re: Really?

Except that will happen no matter what if the grid is down long enough. I still prefer the scenario where I get a check instead of the one where I don't.

User McUser

Re: Really?

Scenario 1 - There is not enough power available on the grid leading to a brown/black out. Your UPS discharges stored power until grid power returns to normal keeping your servers up and running.

Scenario 2 - There is not enough power available on the grid leading to a brown/black out. Your UPS discharges stored power until grid power returns to normal keeping your servers up and running; also, you get some money.

I mean, I know which one *I* would pick.

Introducing 'freedom gas' – a bit like the 2003 deep-fried potato variety, only even worse for you

User McUser

I'm convinced...

That we are definitely living in the dumbest of all possible realities.

Intel unveils Project Athena: Chipzilla tells lappy makers how to build their own kit

User McUser

No, not over WiFi - it uses Bluetooth.

Personality quiz for all you IT bods: Are you a chameleon or an outlaw? A diplomat or a high flier? Vote right here

User McUser


It also confirms our suspicion that millennials are not interested in earthly possessions: more than half (56 per cent) of Gen Z workers say a new challenge is more important than higher salary and other benefits (33 per cent.)

I would like to point out that Millennials and "Gen Z" are two different sets of people. The oldest Millennials are now in their early 40s[1] while the oldest members of "Gen Z" are less than 20 years old.

[1] Millennials were born between approximately 1980 and 2000, +/- a few years on either end depending on the specific definition you use.

Absolute mad lads are teaching physics to AI because how else will it learn to solve real-world problems (like humans)

User McUser

PARC, which established in 1970, was responsible for such advances as [...] the computer mouse.

Pretty sure that computer mice existed prior to 1970...

New UK counter-terror laws come into force today – watch those clicks, people. You see, terrorist propag... NOOO! Alexa ignore us!

User McUser

Re: "reasonable excuse defence"

Terrorick-rolling obviously...

Make America buy phones again! Smartphone doom 'n' gloom crosses Atlantic to cast shadow stateside

User McUser

Current world population is around 7.5x109 so it's closer to one quarter than one third. Also, some people have more than one phone which skews the numbers a bit.

But yeah, apparently they are.

Qualcomm wins Apple patent case, loses Apple patent case, wins Apple patent case, loses Apple patent case...

User McUser

What a strange game...

The only winning move is to be a lawyer.

Age checks for online pr0n? I've never heard of it but it sounds like a good idea – survey

User McUser

Potentially Harmful? What does that even mean?

children could stumble on "potentially harmful material"

Potentially (adverb) - possibly but not yet actually.

Your stove is "potentially harmful" - you could get burned if you touch the hot parts. Your car is "potentially harmful" - you might crash or it could break down and strand you somewhere. EVERYTHING is "potentially harmful" if you look at it in the right way.

Frankly I would be FAR more worried that my child might watch flat-earth videos or become an anti-vaxer after reading garbage websites than I would be worried that they saw an assortment of genitals and orifices interacting.

Our vulture listened to four hours of obtuse net neutrality legal blah-blah so you don't have to: Here's what's happening

User McUser

The Definition of "Common Carrier"

It bothers me that people are so dismissive of the Communications Act being applied to the Internet. Sure, the technology underlying the communication system in question these days is completely different than that in 1934 - nobody is arguing otherwise. But the underlying principle - that the companies that own the "wires" can't control with *whom* you communicate nor the *content* of said communication - is what that law is really about. That principle is essentially the same as what is commonly known as "net neutrality" - no Internet service provider should be able to decide what sort of communications I get to have over the Internet. It's none of their concern - their job is to shuffle the bits back and forth as quickly as possible; no more, no less.

My Internet connection brings me entertainment, news, and personal correspondence in the form of audio, video, text, pictures. It allows me to do business by remote controlling my computer at work and have fun by playing video games with someone on the other side of the planet. I can interact with government services to renew a license plate or pay my taxes. I can buy groceries, order a pizza, pay my bills, and transfer money from checking to savings. Almost everything that I can do in the world at large, I can do over my Internet connection.

I cannot think of a more apt term for that connection than "common carrier."

Should the super-rich pay 70% tax rate above $10m? Here's Michael Dell's hot take for Davos

User McUser

Also England

The UK had a marginal tax rate of 95% in the 60s.

The Beatles even wrote a song about it - Taxman - which has the line "One for you, Nineteen for me"

Dozens of .gov HTTPS certs expire, webpages offline, FBI on ice, IT security slows... Yup, it's day 20 of Trump's govt shutdown

User McUser

Re: Comparison

They'll all get their back pay.

Except that in the meanwhile they can't pay their rent or buy things like food, gas, clothing, etc.

THIS time, Republicans aren't caving in

For TWO WHOLE YEARS (2017 & 2018) the Republicans had a majority in both the House and Senate and they didn't allocate a single cent to the wall. POTUS didn't seem to give a shit about it then so why all the drama now?

And besides, I thought that Mexico was supposed to pay for it.

Ding dong merrily on high. In Berkeley, the bots are singeing: Self-driving college cooler droid goes up in flames

User McUser


That is NOT what I meant when I ordered "Flaming Hot Cheetos."

Official: Voyager 2 is now an interstellar spacecraft

User McUser

Re: I was around 50 years ago, just barely

I have a feeling some billionaire will cause a ruckus a century from now by recovering one of them, bringing it back to Earth, and putting it on display in his house.

If it makes you feel better it would take a LOT of effort to do so.

Using chemical rockets would probably be too expensive to even just catch up to either Voyager probe, let alone return to Earth with them.

They're both currently traveling at more than 15km/s so you'd have to accelerate to a speed faster than that to catch up to one of them, then capture it and change direction to head back to earth. That's a *very* large amount of delta-V which means a tremendous amount of fuel would be needed.

Amazon robot fingered for bear spray leak that hospitalised 24 staffers

User McUser

Re: What are the 3 rules again?

1. A human employee may not reduce the profits of the Amazon corporation, or through inaction allow profits to be reduced.

2. A human employee must obey the orders give to it by Amazon except where such orders would conflict with the first law.

3. A human employee must protect their own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Laws.

He's not cracked RSA-1024 encryption, he's a very naughty Belarusian ransomware middleman

User McUser

It's unethical because they don't tell you that they are a go-between or escrow service - they imply that they can somehow decrypt your files themselves. From the article:

Dr Shifro, a Russian-language organisation presenting itself online as a ransomware decryption agency, claims that it's "the only company that specializes in decrypting files", urging users: "Call – we will help!"

So if you want your files back but don't wish to fund evildoers this would appear to be an alternative solution. Except, of course, that it isn't that at all.

Canuck couple returns home after night on tiles to gaggle of randomers hanging out in their flat

User McUser

Re: The landlord [..] denied ever passing Mongrain's keys to the group

A third possibility is that the door was left unlocked (on purpose or by mistake) and the merry men of macaroni simply entered the wrong flat by honest mistake.

Upgraders rejoice! The 2018 Mac Mini heralds a return to memory slots!

User McUser

Re: Mixed emotions....

This may not be the problem you have but make sure you remove the clear plastic wrap from the thunderbolt cable. There's a chip in the connector that can overheat and cause this problem (randomly blank screens). I witnessed this problem on several dozen trashcan Mac Pros and removing the film fixed it right up.

Apple in another dust-up with its fans: iMacs, MacBooks lack filters, choke on grime – lawsuit

User McUser

Re: Errr....

My gaming PC has filters in the front, but only where the two 120mm fans are located. So there are plenty of gaps where the dust gets in anyways.

Though I do agree that the industry norm is to not have filters.

Facebook's CEO on his latest almighty Zuck-up: OK, we did try to smear critics, but I was too out-of-the-loop to know

User McUser

Content Moderation

And by machine-learning, Facebook may well mean a small army of poorly paid human content-moderators.

The PBS series Independent Lens recently aired a documentary film on these content moderators called "The Cleaners." Available to watch online here: https://www.pbs.org/independentlens/films/the-cleaners/. I highly recommend it.

On a related note, Frontline (another PBS program) recently did a two-part series on Face Book called "The Face Book Dilemma". It's an excellent primer to share with your friends who don't understand what all the fuss is about. Also available to watch online, here: https://www.pbs.org/wgbh/frontline/film/facebook-dilemma/

If you saw a Google ad recently, know that it helped pay off one of its 'sex pest' execs $90m

User McUser


Pichar tried to assure folks that [the] company “deeply cares about Chinese users['s money],”

AI's next battlefield is literally the battlefield: In 20 years, bots will fight our wars – Army boffin

User McUser

"The wars of the future will not be fought on the battlefield or at sea. They will be fought in space, or possibly on top of a very tall mountain. In either case, most of the actual fighting will be done by small robots. And as you go forth today remember always your duty is clear: To build and maintain those robots. Thank you." -- Military school Commandant's graduation address, "The Secret War of Lisa Simpson" [4F21]

New Zealand border cops warn travelers that without handing over electronic passwords 'You shall not pass!'

User McUser

Re: Have fun!

It's a phone. What do you expect they'll find?

The correct question is 'What do they expect they'll find?"

By that I mean: what could possibly be on a phone that a customs agent need to see? Pictures of foreign fruit? Sound recordings of cane toads?

Groupon to pay IBM $57m after getting money off e-commerce patent settlement

User McUser

Re: What are the patents?

Don't know the specific patents in this case but with them being "eCommerce" patents I'm willing to bet they all boil down to:

"An economic thing people have done for centuries but, like, now there's a computer and/or the Internet in there? So it's different somehow. Whatever, who cares - just give us the patent already."

A web where the user has complete control of their data? Sounds Solid, Tim Berners-Lee

User McUser

Some people just have to ruin everything...

"For all the good we've achieved, the web has evolved into an engine of inequity and division; swayed by powerful forces who use it for their own agendas"

Name a single technology from any time in human history that did not follow exactly the same path.

I'm sure the first were fire and flint knives and I don't think it ever stopped.

'Incommunicado' Assange anoints new WikiLeaks editor in chief

User McUser

Re: installed a jamming device ????

Radio signal power follows the inverse square law. So, if the remote WiFi is reasonably distant then the jamming device need not be very strong in order to overpower the WiFi, as long as it is relatively close to Mr. Assange's devices.

Eat my shorts, watchdog tells every city mayor in the US – FCC approves $2bn 5G telco windfall

User McUser

Re: Calling a spade a spade

In other words, it's a fucking lie. Kieran, please stop mincing words. Call a lie a lie.

NPR had an interesting piece on this issue, which can be found here.

Have I been pwned, Firefox? OK, let's ask its Have I Been Pwned tool

User McUser

You use an email address for banking? Why?

Probably because their bank required them to provide an email address when creating a login? I know mine did...

Wow, great invention: Now AI eggheads teach machines how to be sarcastic using Reddit

User McUser

Your Plastic Pal Who's Fun to Be With!

"Dealing with chatbots and virtual assistants can be so frustrating that it’s normal for humans to start getting snarky. Such run-ins would be a little more entertaining if the machines could give some of that sass back" said the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation representative.

No wonder they were first against the wall...

AI image recognition systems can be tricked by copying and pasting random objects

User McUser

I'd go further and say that brains of many species have evolutionary advantages that AI simply can't match.

Obligatory XKCD comic - https://www.xkcd.com/1720/

Judge bars distribution of 3D gun files... er, five years after they were slapped onto the web

User McUser

Machine tools

As for guns... yeesh, 3D printing isn't the only way. They're gonna ban machine tools next?

The difference being that making a gun out of metal (and other materials) using machine tools requires actual skill.

In theory, any idiot can plug in a 3D printer, load some plastic into the hopper (or whatever) and click "Print" to start churning out shitty finger removers plastic guns.



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