* Posts by itzman

1904 posts • joined 28 Jun 2011

Compromise reached as Linux kernel community protests about treating compiler warnings as errors


Re: A billion years ago...

Yup. Sure its a faff when you get a null pointer returned from a function and apply a test to it and the compiler says 'but its not an integer' BUT if you explicily cast it to one, the next bloke along compiling onto a 16 bit integer target with a 32 bit address bus at least knows what you were TRYING to do...

NSA: We 'don't know when or even if' a quantum computer will ever be able to break today's public-key encryption


Re: Not asking the right people

"If you stop measuring light, does it stop moving? Or perhaps head off in a random direction till you measure it again?"

The fact that anything not directly observed even exists, is in the end only an article of faith.

You appear to be blind to the Materialist worldview which you assume to be true, for no other reason than it vaguely explains your experience.

Once you confuse models in your mind with the RealWorld™, you have stopped learning anything.

EU to formally probe Nvidia's $54bn takeover over British chip designer Arm – report



It simply is none of the EU or Chinas business.

They have no legal say in it.

COVID-19 cases surge as do sales of fake vaccination cards – around $100 for something you could get free


Even a valid vaccinatrion certificate is no gurantee

..that you have been injected with anythung more than saline, as a German nurse is charged with injecting it instead of the vaccine...

Wireless powersats promise clean, permanent, abundant energy. Sound familiar?


Re: Oh great, let's microwave the earth... did anyone mention global warming ?

The answer is simple. Heatpumps will cool the citries, and circulate the working fluid to mountain tops where extremely hot heat exchangers will radiate earths surplus heat to space.

What do you mean that's what clouds do?


The difference between a scientist and an engineer

Is that teh scientist has this Geat Idea, and announces it to the world 'it Could Work!' while the engiuneer grabs his slide rule or equivalent, starts calculating costs efficiencies , automatically thinks of safety, and worst cases and concludes 'No, it's worse then the mousetrap I already have' and goes back to reading 'Biggles'

The UK is running on empty when it comes to electric vehicle charging points


Re: "Why solar panels are not mandated as part of the new builds is lost on me."

Better still look at the real sute - not the rip off trademark infringing copy site designed to make money - and go to gridwatch.org.uk


Well you should be. The national grid is about to lose its independence and be nationalised, bringing it under full political control.

Anyone who murmurs that it can't be done will be sacked for 'negative attitudes'.

Name one big government sposnsored infratstructure project that has actually delivered what it was supposed to, on time and on budget, if at all..

Radioactive hybrid terror pigs have made themselves a home in Fukushima's exclusion zone


Re: Domestic cross breeding is the real problem

I have had wild boar in Sardina. Finest pork I ever tasted!

Who would cross the Bridge of Death? Answer me these questions three! Oh and you'll need two-factor authentication


Book of Lies?

*Rest assured, dear reader, everything is this column is the gospel Liber AL truth, as Thoth is my witness. Everything is permitted. Call me Aleister."

Golly. I never would have pegged you as a student of the occult!

TimeCache aims to block side-channel cache attacks – without hurting performance


Re: It's a shit-show!

The answer is massively parrallel Z80s, powered by a small modular reactor....

...i'll get my coat.,..

Wyoming powers ahead with Bill Gates-backed sodium-cooled nuclear generation plant


Re: The reactor is the right size

The benefits of the small modular reactors being developed worldwide are eaily listed

1. Small reactors can use the cube-square law of heatloss versis size to be safe under passive cooling in SCRAM conditions. At a stroke the cause of the only two core meltdowns of PWRS is eliminated

2. Small reactors can be assembled in factories under controlled conditions and then shipped out for installation, massively reducing build inspection and certification times.

3. Larger outputs can still be achieved by use of multiple units

4. Water coooling may not be needed for smaller units making siting less of an issue.

5. Although less efficient in the use of uranium and especially when compared to fast breeders, there is no shortage of uranium at the moment and its dirt cheap.

Although the bogeyman of man made climate change is pretty much dead in the water in scientific circles, the fact remains that fossil fuel costs both in terms of cash and energy required keep on rising as the low hanging fruits of mining and drilling have all been plucked, and the massive propganada campaign about CO2 has left the ill informed public thinking they need alternatives, and renewable energy - which was esily provable over a decde ago to be unsuitable and not fit for purpose - is now undergoing subsidectomy, there remains only one viable and poltically acceptable alternative - and that is nuclear power of some sort..

And whilst not intrinsically ideal from an overall efficiency and engineering perspective, factory built type approved mass produced small (350MW ) modular pressurised water reactors would use thoroughly known and proven technology - the only thing different is that they would be factory built - and can couple up in as many uniyts as are needed to bog standard steam turbines up to a gigwatta mecahnical output or more. Rolls Royce Trent gas turbine units are already used in multiples in gas power stations feeding steam boilers to drive additional generation capacity in CCGT power stations so the modular technology already exists.

What the public probably thinks (or has been told to think) it wants , is a Heath Robinson array of windmills, solar panels, hydrogen production, grid scale batteries made of unobtanium, transcontinental interconnectors and BEVS using lithium sourced from the imagination - there not being that much around to mine...

What it needs however, is a couple of hundred small modular reactors, driving the grid and synthetic hydrocarbon plants. Nothing in the chemical table beats hydrocarbons for energy density and safety in off grid power.

Except uranium and plutonium of course, and how far we will have nuclear ships powered by very small modular reactors plying the oceans remains to be seen.


Re: Thankfully, the world is simple

Nuclear waste.

1. The longest lived nuclear isotope in the world today is the natural uranium we burn to make nuclear power, thus reducing the total amount of radioactivity in the world.

2. There are ~4 billion tonnes of it in the worlds oceans, yet people get excited when a few pounds of radioisotopes were released into the sea at Fukushima.

3. the longer lived the isotope, the less active and the less dangerous it is. If the Romans had had reactors by now they would have decomissioned themselves.

4. If the Romans had had reactors, their Empire would not have collapsed

5. The science now tells us what we didn't know in the Cold War period, that chronic exposure to low level radiation up to 200msV/year has absolutely no discernible effect on cells. And total dose is not what counts - peak dose is what counts.

6. If reactors were built and waste dispaosal were done to reflect what we now know about radiation - that its about 1000 times less dangerous than those old cold war regulations suggest - as evinced by the zero death count from radiation at 3MI and Fukushima and the piddling death count at Chernobyl - less than a hundred people, all exposed to massive single doses fighting fires - then most of the cost would vanish.

Nevertheless this project is, while sexy, not really commercial. We dont need advanced reactors, we need cheap reactors, and that means trying to meet regulatory ratcheting driven by anti-nuclear sentiment paid for by other energy interests with simple cost effective boring ordinary 50 year old technology that is developed to be quick to manufactire and install, and cheap.

If the nuclear industry spent one percent of the money it spends on trying to meet insane and ever moving safety goal posts, on educating people on how safe it was...


Having said that, heatbanks as a way of storing heat energy before conversion to electricity are interesting and may be more cost effective at supplying peak demand than building either pumped hydro (if handy nesaby mountains and water exist) than overcapacity of reactors running below full capacity much of the time.

What is disppointing in reading posts by El Reg readers is that one would have expected the readership to be both techically savvy and capable of researching what this project actually is, and yet the majority of comments betray utter ignorance of either.


As well as supplying about 20% of the UK power...at rock bottom prices well below what even our coal plant can produce..

...in winter we supply france of course


Re: Proper Generation IV reactor design

a molten salt heat bank is not lightning fast load following since it will still be used to generate steam for a turbine.. unless they use flash steam...which no other power station to my knowledge ever has.

It will ramp up and down as fast as a coal burner, maybe even a CCGT, but not as fast as hydro.

A well manged PWR is almost as fast.


Re: You know what

Natrium isnt a molten salt cooled reactor.

Its a molten sodium cooled fast breeder reactor plus a heatbank that stores thermal energy in molten salt to allow it to modulate its output above and below the reactor output in order to provide dispatchable load following without having to have a pumped storage hydro scheme coupled up. Batteries of course are completely unsuitable for grid scale storage

At an intelligent guess I would say it will mostly work eventually long after small modular reactors of bog standard design have become the de facto standard, and more money than even Gates can afford has been spent on it.


Re: Go for it

Really there is no need to invent or develop massivly new reactor designs.

What Rolls Royce and others are doing - production engineering small, and hence passively coolable under Scram, bog standard type approved pressurised water reactors for mass production at low cost with lifetime storage of used fuel (until polticians can decide what to do with it) is the low cost low risk option - is by far and away what we need right now.

Natrium is a complex liquid sodium cooled fast breeder. Dounreay effectively. Expensive, technically tricky, and full of the same problems as Gen II reactors.

Throw enough money at it and I am sure it will work eventually, but it seems to be repeating the same mistakes that the UK nuclear power program made - letting scientists create a better mousetrap rather tnan letting engineers cost reduce and streamline production of a perfectly adequate one

FYI: Today's computer chips are so advanced, they are more 'mercurial' than precise – and here's the proof


well its obvious

that as a data one gets represented by e,g, less and less electrons, statistically the odd data one will fall below the threshold for being a one, and become a zero, and vice versa.

or a stray cosmic ray will flip a flop.

or enough electrons will tunnel their way to freedom....

What to do about open source vulnerabilities? Move fast, says Linux Foundation expert


Re: "the protection mechanism must not depend on attacker ignorance"

Mornington Crescent?


Re: The problem with testing

The golden rule is always to hand it over to an ArtStudent™ for testing.

Not only do they not think like you, what passes for thinking is more like random radioisotopic decay. They can break anything without even putting a mind to it.

Then hand it over to the most evil hacker you can find.

Penguin takeover: We tried running some GUI Linux apps on Windows the official way – and nothing exploded


Sad that its all the wrong way round.

I dont want linux apps running on windows, I want windows apps running on linux...

Out of this world: Listen to Perseverance rover fire its laser at Mars rocks as the wind whips around it


The adjective derived from science...

is 'scientific'

A borked bit of code sent the Hubble Space Telescope into safe mode, revealing a bunch of other glitches


Re: toil and trouble


Want your broadband fixed? Best write to your MP, UK's Zen Internet tells customer


Re: Openreach are run for themselves, not the ISPs forced to buy from them

My experience is quite the reverse. Openreach respond to established faults reported by the ISP. My ISP was brilliant, Openreach spend days fixing faults and did fix all of them.

My supicion is that some ISP's hide behind openreach to escape responsibility.


Re: Unusual incident

I have graphs showing how DSL noise levels are affected by straposheric conditons, going back years.

Losses to wet ground are not quite the same as losses to dry ground for buried stuff, either.


Re: Sounds familiar

Befire I went FTTP I had Open Reach out 6 times to fix my copper pair. Each time it was in fact a different fault. (Bad or corroded connections in water filled conduit and a couple in the overhead link)

Fortunately my ISP (IDNET) simply would not give up until all the issues were fixed, It then performed brilliantly until replaced with fibre.

Which has its own quirks. Cant explain why, but often trying to contact a web site there is a distinct pause beoire data starts flowing

Must 'completely free' mean 'hard to install'? Newbie gripe sparks some soul-searching among Debian community

Thumb Up

Linux MINT

Debian that 'just works'

GitHub will no longer present a cookie notification banner – because it's scrapping non-essential cookies

Paris Hilton

Re: Not that there are other conspiracy theories I do understand

The average persons is not that great at understanding complex stuff, but sky fairies and Illuminati are much simpler, conceptually.

To fake the moon landings and never a word leaked out nor a single mistake made is actually harder than landing on the moon. If you understand special effects etc.

The twin towers collapsed exactly according to their fire rating. 45 minutes fire protection then kiss the steel frame goodbye.


Re: All websites don't really need third party trackers and services

And what is more they don't need first party cookies either, You can maintain state across a session using post or get variables..

Only if you want to login and stay logged in is it almost impossible without a cookie, at least if you want to close the browser in between visits. Browsers store persistent cookies, but not POST variables...

But in the end the answer is extremely simple and in user control.

Never buy anything that is 'pushed' at you, online.

Up yours, Europe! Our 100% prime British broadband is cheaper than yours... but also slower and a bit of a rip-off


No, it doesnt work like that...

Look at what costs money. The laying of the links to you and the cost of back-haul to handle, not average traffic, but PEAK traffic.,. is what needs income.

Once the infrastructure is in place, only the central part of the ISP runs on aggregated traffic. the last 30 miles are all pretty peaky.

You are paying for an empty road, not the petrol...


Re: Disingenuous advertising

Germany is way worse than UK and always has been.


Lichtenstein and Jersey are both very small very rich countries.

So it is not surprising they can give everyone fast broadband.

Mysterious metal monolith found in 'very remote' part of Utah


Re: Someone with too much time & money ...

Shiny thing make it all better


Imagine things are bad enough that you need a payday loan. Then imagine flaws in systems of loan lead generators leave your records in the open... for years


Re: A bad code push ? Really ?

No, we have in fact retrogressed. Today web sites are written by art students using 'frameworks'.

Commercial websites of tier one banks are fatally flawed. No one cares. Bugs are never fixed. It took me over a year to get one bug fixed in a major high street bank so that I could use it without invoking Windows XP in a virtual machine. It still has the same bug, but only once, not twice. It features amazing minimalist graphics of light grey on white, but a marvellous picture of a black man looking like a happy investor. It tells me and has told me for over 18 months I have two messages. There are none.

It has less functionality and runs at half the speed of the site it replaced.

But it is fwightfully 'artistic'

Linus Torvalds worried Linux kernel might get messy around Christmas


Tiers for fears.


Airbus and Rolls-Royce hit eject on hybrid-electric airliner testbed after E-Fan X project fails to get off the ground


small gas turbines

are inefficient due to the problems in getting micro scale gas turbines efficient because getting the clearance between turbine blades and the ducting small enough is very very hard

What's the Arm? First Apple laptop to ditch Intel will be 13.3" MacBook Pro, proclaims reliable soothsayer


less pop for yer buck

I tried apple. I really wanted to love it. I hated it.

If you spent loads of money keeping hardware and software bang up to date you could get about 1/4 the performance of anything running Linux or windows.

This will be the death knell of Apple as a power workstation machine. Unless they keep intel for that.

It's more about battery powered toys for consumers

The incumbent President of the United States of America ran now-banned Facebook ads loaded with Nazi references


Golly. Without Hitler.

There never would have been an EU!

What is the 27th letter of the alphabet? Or is it 26 since Brexit? ZZZZZZ

Do people REALLY believe in numerology?

AHAHAH. Oops. I must be a neo Nazi! Too many AHs.

Hard pencils are now BANNED.


No more 18SWG sheet metal for sale!

Oh what a gay day! Here in my little cottage! Oops. I can't say that, it means something else now.

Talk about dog whistles. The Left is one huge echo chamber tuned to dog whistles. Blown by seriously large corporate interests pretending to be democrats and liberals, who are - gaspo - actually BELIEVED by the useful idiots of the suburban middle classes!


Golly. RED trangles?

I never realised I've been carrying Nazi symbols in the boot of my car AS REQUIRED BY EU LAW

As Twitter blocks white supremacists posing as anti-fascists, FBI appeal is flooded with images of cop violence



I don't see what all the fuss is about. Obviously those sterling moral anti-facsists would never behave - er - like a bunch of jackbooted fascist agitators, would they?

This'll make you feel old: Uni compsci favourite Pascal hits the big five-oh this year


pascal was simply useless.

..for any real software engineering.

I rewrote yards of it into C so that I could actually get code to work. It was so strongly typed that things like reading two bytes of a comms stream that might be a bit field, two bytes of data or a particular error code was almost impossible without creating a union of every possible thing it might be.

And if you were stuck at the coal face nested 15 levels of subroutine deep and you encountered the sort of 'line's dropped on you mate' error the inability to 'go directly to jail without passing GO' with a lon gjmp() produced a nightmare of messy code .

Academics loved it. Engineers avoided it.

Of course the fashion is now to type overloading, leading to an equal mess.

Academics should be banned from writing languages

Facebook to surround all of Africa in optical fibre and tinfoil


Re: Choice of countries

I'm somewhat surprised by the choice of countries. For instance, why is a country like Namibia (with its fairly large mining, manufacturing and banking sector one of the rising stars of the continent) not included whereas a non-African country like Oman is?

Namibia has good fibre links to South Africa, and not a lot of population. Its also a hard country to get power to and from

Oman is full of rich people needing to play online video games.

I am sure that people laying this cable have done a full market survey of the data requirements of every place versus the cost of connecting to it.

This AI is full of holes: Brit council fixes thousands of road cracks spotted by algorithm using sat snaps


Wher can I download this new operationg system...


The Great British anti-5G fruitcake Bakeoff: Group hugs, no guns, and David Icke


Re: Ban everything Chinese

"some discredited lunatic who thinks the word persistent as applied to cookies means your device has been rooted and is now a government mind control weapon."

Well, in a way it has been, and it is.


Re: They are the virus

Tell them about 'manmade climate change'

Cloudflare outage caused by techie pulling out the wrong cables


Re: Cables with labels on

labelling patch cables is pretty pointless - you label or document the patch panels

Five years in the clink for super-crook who scammed Google, Facebook out of $120m with fake tech invoices


Re: Good accounting

Ford Motor Company had a rule that 120 days was just the start of a negotiation..


Re: He should<s> of</s> HAVE just hit normal people


If it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is: Nobody can decrypt the Dharma ransomware


Re: Can someone explain.....

'Offline' is a moveable feast.

Backup is a copy . Where it is and how connected it is are very variable things.

I do auto backup. If my data were corrupted the backup would be, if I didn't notice for 24 hours.

But I am protecting against hardware failure, not malware.

If I were concerned about that, I would do a check on file/backup and if the difference were massive abort and notify.

I don't consider that this particular malware is a serious threat on Linux.

Virtual inanity: Solution to Irish border requires data and tech not yet available, MPs told


Re: Mission Impossible

bookmaker odds represent more what sums are bet on what outcome than any particular outcome being probable.


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