* Posts by a pressbutton

496 publicly visible posts • joined 13 Sep 2011


Samsung's Galaxy S23 Ultra is a worthy heir to the Note

a pressbutton

Re: Heir to the Note my ass

Note4/8/S22 Ultra user - and only got that because the note 8 is no longer supported for security updates.

Hated that there is no SD or headphone jack as well


got a £4.99 usb-headphone converter

not many mobile blackspots left and pay ~£1 per day when abroad

and the pen can be used to trigger the camera

So not really that bothered

I will replace it ~2027 when the security updates stop

The only thing I would like is a better DEX - 4k 60hz support (and no cable). With that and a bluetooth keyboard I wouldnt need a laptop

Of course ymmv depending on the use case

CEO sorry after telling staff to 'leave pity city' over bonuses

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Re: Remember folks.

My apologies for the long post

This is the last 20% of https://annehelen.substack.com/p/the-wages-of-overwork

and yes, I did suffer (?) from that condition / syndrome to the point of burnout a couple of years ago and am heading that way again despite understanding the clear stupidity of what I am doing.

...Now, we see the logical conclusion of that bargain: a society in which overwork is so thoroughly normalized that anything less is interpreted as “lazy,” “lacking hustle,” or “your generation doesn’t want to work.” On Twitter, I’ve seen plenty of self-proclaimed progressives call the protests against changing the French retirement age the actions of an entitled society with no work ethic — instead of understanding that our reaction is deeply colored by the understanding that people should basically work until they die.

Overwork culture is the ideology of the “right” to work at its most perverse. It may monetarily advantage a handful at the top, but the societal damage is tremendous. Most of our acute societal ills are directly tied to poverty, and as numerous studies and pilot programs have shown, could readily be ameliorated by the very simple step of giving people money, whether through programs like the child tax credit (a tremendous success) or UBI (read a great, nuanced explainer here).

But there are second-tier problems that spiderweb around overwork — problems related to community-building, child and eldercare, community wellness, overall health outcomes and plain-out happiness and satisfaction and civic engagement. Turns out it’s incredibly hard to build community, to forge social safety-nets, to agitate for larger social change, to even give and receive care when you’re dedicated, willingly or not, to the culture of overwork.

Maybe this doesn’t sound familiar. Maybe you told overwork culture to fuck off during the pandemic or a decade ago, maybe you live elsewhere and have always considered it a sort of pathology. But maybe some it — the struggle to find the time to do anything but work and raise your kids and recover from work, the philosophical support of unions but a struggle to see the need for one in your workplace, a general inurement to overwork culture — feels comfortably real.

Maybe you feel like you’ve woken up and realized that you’re pretty bad at community, bad at leisure, bad at rest, bad at sustaining friendship….bad at most things, really, that aren’t work. At that, you’re an expert. And in that case, it’s worth asking yourself, again and again, until you can stare the answer straight in the face: at what cost, and for whose benefit?

Elon Musk actually sits down and talks to 'government-funded media' the BBC

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Re: to quote father jack:

I wish our BBC interviewers were as firm as Musk on this

(looking at R4 Today / Laura K and others in many interviews with leading politicians from all parties over the last few years)

The simple line

"you made an assertion, back it up with citations / facts pls"

would simplify / shorten a lot of interviews

( looking at you, Mr Johnson - and many of his friends )

or some basic maths

40,000 people arrive at Dover, It used to take 0 seconds to not check a passport, it now takes 30s, there are 12 staff, so you can only process 30,000 in a day

What is the backlog at the end of the day?

Yes, Samsung 'fakes' its smartphone Moon photos – who cares?

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Re: Faulty phone here!

Was it in black and white?

Tesla hits the brakes on rollout of Full Self-Driving code to new users

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Re: Musk's AI

I think you meant parrot?

on the same theme there are a *lot* of teslas in Norway and a lot of those are blue.

Google now won't black-hole all AI-made pages as spam

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So, at some point there will be an LLM (A) posting content with comments switched on and another LLM (B) will use Google to find that content and will post a comment and ...

... A and B will start to talk to each other

Warning: Microsoft Teams Free (classic) will be gone in 2 months

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Re: All your data belong us…

Never pay the ransomware to get your data back,

GDPR - right to data portability ?

Generally speaking the data should be free


Atos and Nest part company two years into 18-year £1.5bn contract

a pressbutton

nest is effectively a QUANGO



This will not be paid by taxpayers, the costs of running NEST will be (a little) larger than they would have been.

It surprises me that the contract has been terminated. I recognise the continual tension between vendor / client - 'new' stuff that may or may not have ought to be in the original plan / SOW always comes up.

My reason for surprise is that

- these things usually get passed up the chain and then negotiated as a long term contract gives a _lot_ of space to make money back

- the job that NEST does has not changed much (as far as I understand it manages pensions - esp. auto-enroled ones - and the regs have not changed much)

So it tells me

- ATOS did not supply a 'good enough' product / service

and / or

- NEST were completely unreasonable.

I look forward to seeing what any anons out there have to say.

Cops chase Tesla driver 'dozing' with Autopilot on

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Re: Some clarifications to comments below

So basically switch from the 'average' non tesla to a tesla on autopilot and you decimate your chance of being in an accident. These are publicly available numbers.

No. Bad stats.

Teslas with autopilot are more often used on freeways & other 'wide' roads - fairly controlled environments (I do not think they are legal in the UK)

Manually driven cars are driven in city centres - an uncontrolled environment.

There is a much greater chance per mile of an accident in an uncontrolled environment.

Apples / Oranges.

You need to compare tesla without autopilot with other car that has a similar safety braking feature etc.

I think you will probably find they are about the same.

Computing's big question for 2023: How many more questions can we endure?

a pressbutton

Re: Yep, American LOOOOOVE Officiousness

What capt v said.

I have been repeatedly asked when handing over some small bit of functionality for some docco

Young people ask for a video.

Two years later they ask for a document.

You cannot search a video and good luck in capturing fields on a form.

Old people ask for a document

Two years later they ask for a document.

Which is fine.

LastPass admits attackers have a copy of customers’ password vaults

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Re: Private Equity Twats

there is someone now trying "casserole in that case" on that vault archive

What's in Santa's sack? New Linux Mint, EndeavourOS and postmarketOS updates

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Re: EndeavourOS looks good to me.

special feature - you log in by completing a crossword

Carmack quits Meta, brands it inefficient and unprepared for competition

a pressbutton

Re: Where has all the money gone??

because below the metaverse there are a _lot_ of hungry turtles

Inadequate IT partly to blame for NHS doctors losing 13.5 million working hours

a pressbutton

Most of these hospital based systems were written for US - based hospitals - or ones that charge, where _every_thing_is_chargeable_ and so needs to be recorded.

... and by the way hold patient records.

these systems are installed by consultants of varying abilities in hospitals of varying purpose and age and IT infrastructure.

Sometimes successfully, sometimes otherwise. This can lead to utter failure ( google cerner bristol failure )

There are a number of key reqs that do not really happen anywhere else in the world

- every hospital is different and so is often managed differently

- hospitals do different things (some are overgrown GP practices, some specialise in war injuries, some in eyes)

- your data is supposed to be available to all of them, very quickly

- it is supposed to be updated in a way that makes sense to all


- it is the NHS - the prime need is to record what happened to the patients, not how much to bill them.

(disclaimer - things may have changed in the last 10 y or so, but it does not sound like it)

Programming error created billion-dollar mistake that made the coder ... a hero?

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Re: Welcome Back!

It is called recurseion because if you get it right the first time, your time was wasted

US Air Force reveals B-21 Raider stealth bomber that'll fly the unfriendly skies

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Re: What a waste of resources

You never know, it may do something to challenge "rock lobster" one day.

Intel reveals pay-to-play Xeon features with software-defined silicon

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Re: Risky

or maybe they send you a free replacement if it doesnt work? - that way you pay for the testing

NSA urges orgs to use memory-safe programming languages

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Re: Spy org says...

The NSA, Microsft and _you_ walk into a bar....

They buy you a beer

"How did you know what I want""

"We know..."

I'm happy paying Twitter eight bucks a month because price isn't the same as value

a pressbutton

Re: Oh, we know the value.

Perhaps he should charge more for guaranteed anonymous accounts

Nvidia admits mistake, 'unlaunches' 12GB RTX 4080

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Re: I don't believe it

A meta unlaunch button

It is all getting a bit self referential

The Metaverse is the internet no one wants

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Re: Is there a problem with VR?

I can think of 2

- the chance to look around a new building / car before it is built (sensible but pretty niche)


- porn (mainstream but not sensible)

Florida asks Supreme Court if it's OK to ban content moderation it doesn't like

a pressbutton

Re: You can either have Free Speech

To many in the US Twitter and FaceBook have attained the status of being a "Public Space"- on this side of the pond "Speakers Corner".

And so get v. upset if that cant say what they want on FB/TWTR.

I may not agree with their politics but recognise it is a milestone in the development of the internet that a good number of people now see some private platforms (that have spent years trying to become universally used and ubiquitous) as public spaces.

No-one is thinks that of 4chan, which never strove to be used by the entire world and their dogs/cats.

I do think that there is a case to be made that FB/TWTR should be viewed as a "town square" and so cannot moderate speech. However the USAians are v. keen on copyright control...

As the current Supreme court are aparrently quite inventive,

suggest we all order Popcorn.

Excel's comedy of errors needs a new script, not new scripting

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I was waiting for someone to say "Agile" and "Prototyping"

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Re: Excel is already the single most dangerous tool to give to civilians.

No you cant. google "company destroyed by excel". provide the top 10 names pls.

Excel cocks up

and user accepted the results without thinking and peer reviewer accepted the results without thinking and managers unquestioningly accepted the results without thinking and the chief accountant accepted the results without thinking.

Now, you may be able to seriously damage a financial firm but I do not think the trading algorithms are in VBA.

Some may point to the VAR projections used by LTCM but again dont think they were in VBA and anyway, where was the human judgement.

As noted above "The managers are supposed to check..."

Having said that, plenty of lives ruined by mailmerge as noted below...

a pressbutton

More seriously

Business processes are continually evolving.

One of the first mistakes IT people make is that they (I) expect people to come to them with a nicely documented petition pleading for something to be different and this is considered once a year and if they feel merciful, it might appear a year after that implemented in a way that solves the documented issue but not what they (I) wanted/needed.

That "beautiful" planned, tested, trained, maintained ERP-DB system may be 100% as far as the tests the group IT have in place, but in many cases the product is less useful than the hokey old macro enabled sheet that intern did last summer.

Yes, spreadsheets do have lots of errors, but if you compared the utility of a spreadsheet and all its issues with the utility of an enterprise solution and all its issues, well it is pretty obvs that if the spreadsheet was not about as bad or slightly less bad, it would not be used.

After a few years there is a string vest (I would have said 'web' or network' but...) of linked hokey solutions that sort of work enough of the time (there is a survivorship bias here - if it failed, the sheets would be gone or the company or both) to keep the business going.

The core issue is in the gap between "Proper solution" and what a business wants. Wants change. People do not know what they want. It is usually what they are offered but with a number of 'alterations'. Once they get those alterations, there are more alterations wanted.

This is dynamic and iterative.

If IT cannot provide the service, and there is a low up-front cost (a helpful young thing who learned excel in college) the business will do it themselves with the tools they have. Most businesses work off numbers. Excel happens to be the dominant tool.

Thus the article.

I put it to you that the issue is not primarily Excel.

It is the IT team's ability to provide the service quickly and at about the same (up front) price as the business.

There are a number of solutions

- take Excel away (you will taken away first)

- teach everyone to program (but there are programmers and ... programmers)

- do something else

Like google sheets where the macro language is a bit trickier and so discourage fledgling foot gunners

Or a *really good* db / reporting tool

a pressbutton

Excel is already the single most dangerous tool to give to civilians.


I put it to all that in the UK, a car is rather more dangerous.

In the US, semiautomatic weapons

In France, the literary fiction.

Don't want to get run over by a Ford car? There's a Bluetooth app for that

a pressbutton

stop horsing around

Appeals court already under fire for upholding Texas no-content-moderation law

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Re: USA Today


What happened to the British dream? I commend an article in the FT Friday 16 Sep 22 by John Burn-Murdoch.

"Britain is a poor society with some very rich people"

The article is summarised here : https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1570832839318605824.html

Basically the way things are going:

The average Slovenian household will be better off than the average British household by 2024.

By 2030 the average British person will benefit from working in Poland as they will be better off doing that. Except as we are not in the EU, they cant.

What is the point of a govt that (at best) ignores the living conditions of half its populace?

This is not a rant at the cons - they just happen to be in power at the moment - this applies to lab too.

There is evidence that the average growth rate of a country is higher when incomes are more evenly distributed. Our country is becoming less equal and the growth rate is dropping.

One man's battle to get patent rights for AI inventors in America may be over

a pressbutton

I have a lot of sympathy for mr Thaler

But his strategy of

- Getting a patent assigned to a non human

Therefore making the point

- a non human has the same rights as a human

Still does not work as it does not make that point even if he succeeded in getting patent rights assigned to an AI.

Tesla faces Autopilot lawsuit alleging phantom braking

a pressbutton

Re: Last week

Perhaps that was on an incline, it was driving a small cheap old car, and it spoke to you before it died.

This is not as rare as it seems.

Indeed it may well have been a common hill mynah imp

Google promises to adjust search algorithm to favor 'people-first content'

a pressbutton

I await the singularity

So the AI engine will be improved iteratively...

When the search engine just tells me what I want to know without me asking,

I will welcome the new overlords and buy a plastic cucumber preserver as suggested.

a pressbutton

Re: A good start….

But then you might not see a link to one of the best games ever invented and played on Radio 4.

The answer is in plain sight...

Google sues Sonos yet again, claiming it stole IP and infringed patents

a pressbutton

Cognitive dissonance

On Sonos speakers self-bricking, there is an essential mental conflict.

I pay for a tidal sub and a mobile phone connection and netflix, if I stop paying, those services stop.

This is not a surprise or an issue to me.

My next door neighbour has 5 Sonos speakers scattered in his house, they are good. He has spent time and energy installing them etc, if they self brick, ever, he will be livid.

This "buying something, but it is not yours" is universally hated (printer ink) but people keep on trying (I understand BMW is selling 'features' for its car on a subscription in Korea)

IMO we need rules (laws) that make corporates fit their sales channels to human expectations and understandings.

a pressbutton

Re: but I can listen to Neil Young whenever I want

so you have a 'Heart of Gold'...

I think that is highly, highly improbable...

Too little, too late: Intel's legacy is eroding

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One sentence well worth the el reg subscription all by itself

"...and it just killed off Optane, which was arguably its most promising development in recent memory."

... brilliant.

Solana, Phantom blame Slope after millions in crypto-coins stolen from 8,000 wallets

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Re: Surely

This is true

Some tulip bulbs sell for over £13 each.

They do look lovely

Hope Solana holders feel the same when looking at their holdings.

Lunchtime. Nice sunny day, going out for a solero. 60p

Pull jet fuel from thin air? We can do that, say scientists

a pressbutton

*NOT* carbon neutral

The plant has to be built.

The fuel may be carbon-neutral, but once you factor in externalities, like the component manufacture, building, etc etc

This is not carbon neutral.

This is the sort of greenwash the greenies (quite rightly) accuse oilcos of.

Demand for smartphones is drying up

a pressbutton

Re: Innovation

Note 8 owner too, battery not what it used to be too.

Tempted by S22/23 ultra, but from what I understand the camera, whilst miles ahead on headline specs, is not actually much better in real life.

I moved on from a note 4 because the Note 8 camera was much better.

So may not do anything other than get the battery replaced in a year's time.

Now-frozen crypto-lending biz Celsius accused of devolving into a Ponzi scheme

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Re: A strange business model anyway

"I'm sure you do understand it. OTOH the entire operation seems to have depended on a ready supply of people who didn't and were prepared to back their lack of understanding with cash."

Most people do not understand that cash is only worth what you can exchange it for.

Happily almost no-one says "no, I want a kilo of jam" when offered £3.

Most people do not understand that crypto is only worth what you can exchange it for.

Unfortunately some people want more a lot $crypto when offered £3.

Trustless was not supposed to be interpreted like that but that is humanity for you.

AI's most convincing conversations are not what they seem

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I like to think that you can measure sentience by assuming that things that are sentient want things.

That could be food or to reproduce or to be told a joke.

The unit of sentience is the complexity of behavior used to obtain what the sentient thing wants

Of course how you define that is interesting

As most can agree

Ant < Jackdaw

But how do you classify

Ant nest cf Jackdaw....

To be clear any known program needs to be fed (electricity) but will not try to manipulate its environment to be fed or fed more or reproduce.

So programs =0

... unless that is what they want me to think.

US Supreme Court puts Texas social media law on hold

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Re: preclearance for unconstituional state laws?

I think you might find prop 3141 is almost 10 times better

Tech pros warn EU 'data adequacy' at risk if Brexit Britain goes its own way

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“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are ‘I’m from Boris's government and I’m here to help.’”

- ronald reagan didnt say that, but I would like to think he would have if he was around today

- citations include most of british business, northern ireland, a lot of ex-colleagues and Mrs zagari-ratcliffe

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Re: "The way forward"

Magic beans are attached to castles in the sky.

Housing problems solved.

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Re: Funny..

You mean like driving on one side of the road, disposing of toxic waste in a safe way etc etc?

Yes, some rules are stupid (though, please give real examples that are not based on journalistic fantasy (yes, you Johnson, lying toad))

But the GDPR regs broadly mean that my data is mine - that is a good thing imo. Whist they could be better, I have more chance of winning the lottery than this govt has of actually improving them.

Lawyers say changes to UK data law will make life harder for international businesses

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So who is Dogbert?

Shareholders turn the screws on IBM and its gag orders

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Re: "there was (and is) no systemic age discrimination at our company"

All those lawsuits are for individuals - one person at a time

So there can be no systemic discrimination

Even though so many of them rhyme

(I did not run out of words - Verse 2 is subject to an NDA)

MIT's thin plastic speakers fall flat. And that's by design

a pressbutton

It sounds an awful lot like NXT.

Having a quick google indicates that the NXT technology has (possibly is) in use in noise cancelling fighter aircraft cockpits (wind noise)

It has been used in hifi products but does not seem to work well below 100hz, so you need a sub

It seems to compete well with electrostatics in good implementations

Currently it seems to be used in https://symphonova.com/technology/

Smart contract developers not really focused on security. Who knew?

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Having read


I am amazed that an anonymous person can get a loan of $1*Bn* for a couple of days.

This may see a bit 'newbie' ... but how does this self-executing code self-execute.

Sounds like the code is embedded in the blockchain (data) - not clear how that code is actually 'run'

Guessing that there is a server somewhere that takes inputs - one of which is the blockchain - and conditionally does things based on other inputs.

What could go wrong.

Google Docs' AI-powered inclusive writing auto-correct now under fire

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Re: know the unknowable

In this context you need to

-persuade the sender to actually send

-and also the receiver to do what you want.

Your comment implies the sender is the writer. Not so, Google is the writer and unless you send, there is no point.

a pressbutton

know the unknowable

Alternatively, if enough data can be obtained on the sender and receiver, it is possible to generate something that is appropriate.

Just think what you could do with something that generated language fitted to your ears modeled as being from a trusted source

Godwins law in 7 comments.