* Posts by Old n Cynical

42 publicly visible posts • joined 11 Oct 2011

FTC urged to probe Google's Safari-tracking gaffe

Old n Cynical

"Seems like there's an organized campaign to harass Google going on"

Yeah, like there was an organised campaign to harass Al Capone. Seriously?

Apple's Messages beta will self-destruct on Mountain Lion launch

Old n Cynical

Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Oh Great....What a frigging annoyance from hell

"An instant message sent by your iBuddy will ping on your iPhone, your Mac and your iPad, if you have left those devices on. What's more, it will keep pinging away until you have explicitly opened and received the notes on each device individually."

Not an attack on your post Fats, but assuming the article is correct about the above then...

Stupid programmers. They should have:

a) Been bound, or provided with a means self-bind, even through a hot key (say Cmd B)

b) Been gagged and had their status changed to 'Unconcious'

c) Been horsewhiped to within an inch of a kernel panic.

d) Had their status updated to 'Unemployed', or be provided with the means to self-terminate, maybe a key labelled 'DEL' on their forehead?

If only reason and sanity prevailed.

Oh. They don't. :)

(Of course, if the article is incorrect on the quoted points, just file my response for when some idiot does do this).

Old n Cynical

Re: Re: Re: Oh Great....What a frigging annoyance from hell

"it is an affront to humanity... humans do not need to be hounded down by twatter & facecrack feeds at all hours of the day and night."

My thoughts too, but alas, it appears that many virtual society supplicants, for reasons unbeknown to me, do indeed crave such a constant fix of tripe, dross and drivel. My only hope is that sanity will return to roost some time soon.

Proview fears fanbois will derail iPad export ban bid

Old n Cynical

Re: Re: Re: Popularity affects law?

OK cowardly troll, I'll bite...

"You despair of your kids generation? Perhaps they get it from you!"

Firstly, I don't despair /of/, my kids generation, but I do dispare /for/ my kids generation. There is a fundemental, almost polar, difference between the two. Your first mistake.

Secondly, when talking of the current generation I actually alluded to hypocrisy in the courts in a general sense. Not hypocrisy where just Apple are concerned, but also hypocrisy in criminal courts. If you believe that the legal system treat us all as equals and in an equal manner, you are simply a fool.

Do Apple deserve a good legal spanking? If they transgress the rules of any land of course they do, and when they do, financial penalties should be punative in a very real sense, not just in a notional sense.

Have Apple demonstrated theselves to be open, fair and honest? Of course not, only a fool would suggest otherwise. Me? I am long enough in the tooth to know that a leopard does not change it's spots so easily. So far Apple have been treated very delicately in many actions that have gone against them. I for one, believe that should change.

All that said however, with idiots like the USPTO in action, the childish behaviour we have seen from companies like Apple in recent years can only be encouraged to continue.

Yes, I believe Apple deserve to suffer real punative sanctions at their next transgression. Did I say they deserve such punative sanction in respect of the article matter? No, I did not. What I did say however was that I agreed that the question "If it's against the law or found to be in violation..." was a valid question IMO. Note the /if/.

Old n Cynical

Re: Popularity affects law?

"If it's against the law or found to be in violation of some trademark shouldn't it be banned regardless?"

I'm inclined to ask the same question, based on the principle that everyone is equal under law. Of course, as we all know, this is often demonstrated to /not/ be the case.

I truly despair for my kids generation - the madness and hypocrisy shown in many recent court cases and decisions (IP and criminal alike), both home and abroad, illustrates to me just how screwed up things are - and to some degree how decisions can be 'bought'.

My personal opinion is - minnow or fat cat, friend or foe - you break the laws of the land, you suffer /equal/ penalty.

Personally, I think Apple are in need of, and well overdue for, a good legal spanking - in the same way the the proverbial playground bully deserves a good ****ing hiding. But then, I also believe that market consolidation, as we are seeing it now, is bad for just about everyone, except perhaps major shareholders. (I'm probably in the minority on these points though).

Microsoft code not the security sieve sysadmins should be worried about

Old n Cynical

Re: if only

"if only there was an alternative system..."

One that is fast, stable, secure, has centralised development, is copyfree, comes with good documentation, has mature minded community support, and has variants which run well on both servers, desktops and laptops for the novice and pro alike?.. That would /have/ to be BSD then, eh? ;P

I really don't understand all the fuss and hype about Linux. (I am, of course, assuming that you were actually referring to Linux).

(Where's the Beastie icon?)

Google unleashes 'Solve for X' confabs to save the world

Old n Cynical

"Sitting around jerking each other off does nothing."

Then you probably aren't doing something quite right I'll proffer. Or is it because you just feel dirty and used ;)

More seriously though, I agree with your general sentiment, but hey, let the kids play.

Conclusive proof of human activity causing glacier to vanish

Old n Cynical


"Here people will dispute gravity..."

Ohh! Ohh! Me! Me!

Let me humour you and go off at a slight, perhaps semantic, tangent... I assume that you are of the opinion that gravity is 'solved' and thus fully explained by Newton and Einstein? But no...

There are plenty of anomolies to be had if you look a little closer, which is why some scientists are busy looking for a new or modified theory. Neither Newton nor Einstein provide all the answers 'as is'. In this respect there is actually some potential 'dispute' about gravity, ergo these 'people' in your argument would perhaps not be entirely wrong if they did in fact 'dispute gravity' so-to-speak.

Oh, and I am 'old school' (or that could just be, 'old') and don't personally need a GPS.


RIM's cartoon superheroes inspire caustic Tweet-storm

Old n Cynical

To get that out of the door I reckon the ad bods must have been RIMming execs ;)

SpaceShipOne man, Nobel boffins: Don't panic on global warming

Old n Cynical

Meh x 2

"100ppm in a century? No"

I am not aware of any data for the PETM that can provide accurate data for *100 year timesteps*. I am only aware of averages spread across 10,000+ years. If you can point me to a scientific source that provides PETM data in accurate, century timesteps (which are *not* a tiny part of a much larger average) - so that I can all draw a direct comparison against the last century - please do. If not, I fail to see how that statement holds.

Don't get me wrong - we are contributing to a (potentially) big problem - without doubt. It's the FUD driving some of the science that I take issue with.

At the end of the day we are not yet clever enough to determine if our current experiment on the global climate will roast us all. Even if we were to become able to accurately determine the furture for the climate, whichever camp was left our in the cold would always find a counter argument - it's the nature of the beast.

Old n Cynical

"They are higher than they've been for millions of years"...

I think you missed the part where I mentioned geological time periods... That's a lot more than just a few million years. Current atmospheric CO2 concentration levels higher than in most other *geological eras*? Absolute hogwash. A few million years is just a tiny snapshot compared to gelolgical timescales. Atmospheric CO2 was higher during the Precambrian, the Paleozoic, the Mesozoic and previous Cenozoic periods. (Although the Paleozoic does show a huge decline, which is perhaps not surprising).

"The current rate of CO2 rise is extremely fast compared to previous eras. In fact no past example of a faster CO2 rise is known."

That would depend on what data you choose to look at as far as I can tell. I can find seemingly endless sets of conflicting data.

The Paleozoic (Silurian/Devonian) and Mesozoic show rapid increases in atmospheric CO2.

Since the Tertiary, the general trend for CO2 and tempertaure - over geological timescales - is a not insubstantial downard trend. That is simply an incontrovertible truth, whichever side of the fence one sits on - although some do prefer to use a smaller data sample to avoid addressing this fact.

Though of course, if we pump all that sh*t back into the air - we contribute to any warming. It's the size of the contribution that is unproven and we are not yet in another wamhouse. (I do recall my Planetary Science lecturer - many years ago - having a good old rant about man-made global warming... It's just a shame I cannot convey his words here... Too many profanities).

Old n Cynical


I don't see that it matters... Aren't we all supposed to burn in some catastrophic event caused by the so-called Galactic Allignment this year?

But if science still can't agree on, for example, solar forcing, what hope is there for accurately extrapolating a spit roast future?

It's perhaps a moot point for some but:

1) Atmospheric CO2 concentration levels are curently lower than in most other geological time periods

2) The more recent temperature fluctuations are not as pronounced as others during the Pleistocene and Holocene.

3) The latest fluctuation is actually less most others during the Holecene.

4) Whilst the concentration of atmospheric CO2 is currently on the rise, it has increased at a greater rate in previous Eras.

The smaller the snapshot of geological data used the worse the scenario seems. It's getting warmer without doubt, but on a geological timescale it's nothing unusual.

If the 'warmies' cut the alarmist crap they might get a better reception.

Hold on a sec - leap seconds granted a last-minute reprieve

Old n Cynical


I don't really think the Americans are best placed to lecture on good practice here [links follow]:



There are other such examples :)

Boffins quarrel over ridding world of leap seconds

Old n Cynical

@AC 11.26

To clarify: where it should be - to me. I wasn't actually trying to draw a reference to bygone days.

IMO the most 'logical' day for New Year's day is when the sun is at (or one day past) it's lowest altitude above the horizon and definately not when the sun is at one of the equinoctial points... But then I also see sidereal as more intuitive and natural than say, solar :)

"Time measurement is just a tool. Tools should fit the normal user in his normal environment, not the other way around."

Ah'ha. HCT? Human Circadian Time. That may put me at odds with the bloke next door who is on permanent nights. He's on HCT +12. (I jest of course).

Old n Cynical

'A Method For Deterministic Time Synchronisation And Co-Ordination In Fixed And Moving Reference Frames For Portable Electronic Devices With Or Without Roundy Corner Bits'

I think the ITU are knackered whatever they do. I imagine Apple have already patented something like the above though the *cough* USPTO.

What I'd like to see is a good shake up of the entire calendar, starting with putting New Years Day where it (roughly) should be... December 21st.

@moiety: There's already such a fund. It's called the Common Agricultural Policy. France knick loads of it. It keeps those inefficient, not-so hardworking rural French farmers, well, not very busy but quids in ;)

NHS trust to digitise millions of patient records

Old n Cynical

Me no confident

Last time I had occasion to visit A&E at my local hospital - which has been my local for longer than I care to remember - I was told that had I never been there and there was no record of me anywhere. When I pointed out that I had in fact been going there for decades - I was told "Oh well. Never mind. Take a seat. You are not the first to disappear off our system."

Experts: We're stuck with passwords – and maybe they're best

Old n Cynical

@Computers vs Humans

Rainbow tables are exactly the reason that one should, at the very least, sprinkle a decent amount of salt over passwords - about 128 crypto-random bits on each password should get the ball rolling.

As for brute force or basic dictionary attacks, these are a different kettle-o-fish, but there are relatively trivial ways to /assist/ in reducing exposure.

The problem is there are a lot of commercial systems out there that still dont even take the most rudimentary of data security precautions. 'Reap what you sow' I suppose.

Ad slingers - obeying EU snoop code is NOT GOOD ENOUGH

Old n Cynical

WTF? I'll say it again...

Opt out cookies? FFS. We all know that if they were serious then it would be explicitly opt-in.

Obviously 'Your Choices' want Joe Public to allow third party cookies to achieve this. Hmmm. Think not.


Oh goodie... After allowing their bits-n-bobs through the usual add-ons I note that one cannot even view the info on the scumbag ad companies until one enables third party cookies - or so their intentions illustrate. Tw@ts.

So let me get this straight... To set my opt out I must:

1) Enable third party cookies

2) Disable ABP etc.

3) And - amongst others (CDN/stats) - let a script from secure-uk.imrworldwide.com* through.

*This is the same imrworldwide.com that:

1) Has no directly accessible site at that address

2) Is listed as 'suspected of possibly being a scam or site engaged in fraudulent activity' here: http://www.aboutus.org/IMRWorldwide.com (as well as being listed as suspicious, suspect etc. elsewhere).

3) Is treated by some as a purveyor of malware/spyware.

4) Is Red Sherriff's alter ego.

I could go on, but on the surface it looks like 'Your Choices' are not just in bed with the ad sector, but actively taking one in each and every orifice.

In reference to 'Your Choices', I say again... Tw@ts!

Ubuntu hoists skirt, flashes 'concept' gadget at CES

Old n Cynical

@AC 14:10


dump Linux completely and go (back) to *BSD. Gimme a decent BSD any day.

Chrome passes Firefox in global browser share

Old n Cynical

Bring back NN :)

To compare vanilla installs (mostly) - and just with this page opened in a new instance (all in MB):

Chrome : 93 (3 processes)

FF: 121 (add-ons) / 69 (vanilla)

IE: 78 (2 processes)

Opera: 84

Safari: 44

(All latest releases)

And for people still living in caves:

Netscape Navigator 9: 53

So, it's official NN9 is only beaten by Safari. That's progress for ya ;)

Old n Cynical

@The Reg: Better Reporting Please

Whilst I don't dount the rise in Chrome users*:

1) StatCounter statistics are derived from hits, as opposed to unique visitors.

2) The article states 'market share'.

It may just be me, but I find it difficult to correlate a true reflection of market share against the number of raw hits. i.e. How do we know that Chrome users aren't just more active?** Surely raw hits are not exactly the best indicator?

Also, what the article does not mention is that IE made a larger gain in share from October to November than Chrome.***

IMO - and like I said, I don't Chrome's rising popularity - this article is slightly flawed, uses inaccurate data (hit based) and is focused solely on one thing - the rise of Chrome.

Let's hope any future articles are better reported.


* From what the kids say, many school age kids use Chrome because 'my friends say it's cool' (cool as in kewl-aid but not necessarily as in 'good') and 'my friends nearly all use Chrome, so I switched'.

** The kids waste many an hour trawling that YouTube (and similar) tosh watching inane videos whilst using Chrome. They probably exceed my hit 'hit rate' by a factor of at leat 25:1 for this very reason. So from my house, Chrome would have a massive market share when based on hits, but in reality this is not the case.

*** Combined desktop and mobile stats from StatCounter show IE increasing by 3.13% and Chrome by 2.13%. Now, I am not suggesting that I believe IE will continue in this fashion, but it is something that article totally fails to mention.

US broadcasters team up to make Facebook for TV

Old n Cynical


"How does a group of friends get to watch the same programming at the same time?"

Is it just me that reads that as "How fsking sad are we getting that we feel we must watch some random shite synchronously, so that we can discuss on Facebook (or similar) the instant said shite has finished?" I mean, really, has socialising become that enervative?

@AudiGuy: Unfortunately Facebook is already on many internet enabled sets.

Punctured Google+ leaks bored users

Old n Cynical

800 million active users? Ok ,how many regular & *unique* active users - unique as in different prople?...

Hmm... Say 50 million cats. dogs and mice with pages. 750 million then.

Oh... 250 million accounts represent multiple account users 'other' accounts,.

So, 500 million left.

Let's see... How many are not regular, returning users? Say 100 million. 400 million left then,

Now, how many cognisant users? Hmmm. 5 you say.

Now how many have something interesting to say? ~1?

Oh, so it's really that's 1 active user with a brain and something constructive to say then.

Microsoft takes fight to Google over cloud apps defections

Old n Cynical

Oi, downvoter(s)... Lol!

Prey tell how you can downvote actual times? Lol. You're funny! Please provide constructive criticism, if you can - explaining why I did not see the stated start/open/compile times. If you think I lie, say so :)

Old n Cynical

I shall correct myself then...

Yeah, OK, so I am not normally awake at that time of night. I made a mistake already, none of us are perfect!

Anyway, maybe 'mrweekender' will enlighten the world with his evidence of 'paid voters'. My question stands, I simply directed it at the wrong person, as you pointed out. (I for one would be most interested to know if this were not just some absurd, untrue statement).

You did however write that you 'find it sufficiently statistically skewed to be significant.' So please, post your research data here. If you have any I would be genuinely interested to read it - yes, I am *that* sad. Thanks :)

Old n Cynical

I tried something similar, and...

I must have fallen into a temporal time distortion because I just compiled a 13,500 line (soon to be) open source native WiFi project I wrote a while back in MS Visual Studio (open source and MS in the same sentence, hush my mouth). My results, using the Ultimate Ed and compiling locally held source:

Startup time: ~4 seconds

Time to open solution: ~2 seconds

Compile time: ~5 seconds

Compiled on a 3yr old, memory retarded, Toshiba Satellite laptop running *ahem* Vista. (no check outs/ins counted)

Go figure :)

Old n Cynical

@Craiggy (well, a bit)

Whilst I would perhaps lean towards agreement that there is a surge in downvotes "whenever anyone bad mouths Microsoft", in the interests of reasoned and rational debate I would like to see some supporting fact behind your assertion that 'paid voters' are the cause, assuming of course that was just not some ad-hoc, asinine statement? If you can name a single 'paid voter', please do.

Also you 'find it sufficiently statistically skewed to be significant'... Could you please post your research data here? Thanks :)

But seriously... I use all 3 popular flavours of OS. None are perfect, but my preference is neither the Microsoft or Apple offerings (although I am posting this off my Windows game box). Even though a Linux flavour may be my personal choice of OS - for many reasons - maybe some forum readers are simply, like me, fed up having to trawl through seemingly incessant, sometimes absurd and often plain wrong OS bashing and trolling? Maybe some are simply downvoting for this reason? 'Same old, same old' gets rather tiresome.

Now, I am not pointing my finger at you personally here, but it does appear that hereabouts is populated by a burgeoning population that likes a rant, a dig or an asinine swipe at pretty much anything they have a personal dislike for. It makes for rather boring reading at times.

Personally, do I give a fig if Microsoft are offering inducements for their customers not to defect? Nope, I sure don't. Business is all about profit, sales is mostly about bullshit. At the end of the day I would much rather Microsoft remain in business, as Microsoft 'users' raise a fair portion of my income. Crap or not, I vote to keep Microsoft alive and well... My wallet will - based on the past 2 tax years - be slimmer without them.

Long live Microsoft... and the pengiun!

Visa to tell shops where their punters' wallets went next

Old n Cynical

Ho hum

Whilst I am no supporter of such data sharing (quite the opposite in fact) - where the data to be shared is that pertaining to a private individual or their behaviour - if the service is adequately 'anonymised' I see no real problem with it. But it does reflect - yet again - that Joe Public is simply a commodity to be exploited.

The chances are all of us reading this will one day end up listed in an ancestry.com death certificate search and so will continue to be exploited, long after our demise. But hey, that's life!

Salman Rushdie hissy-fit forces Facebook name U-turn

Old n Cynical
Thumb Up

Sad, but true.

The contagion has spread. It's been surreptitiously spreading throughout the UK for a few decades, predominantly in the far right and the socialist left and is now infecting many in the central ground. The Moron Contagion has also been prevalent among those directing education policy in the UK for many a year.

Google's legal boss is fed up with patent warfare

Old n Cynical


"Google Search, Google Earth, Google Maps, Google Docs, GMail. All products (mostly) better than their competitors."

That would be a matter of personal opinion. IMO, any other free, competing product - which, even if it were technically inferior - that does not scan my soul and poke around my arseole like an insane proctologist for advertising opportunities at every turn would always be superior to one that does. I would rather pay a fee to a support minnow service provider that values privacy. My freetard days are long gone and I prefer to support small business buy buying their services ahead of using the offerings of an out of control ad agency. But that's just me. (As you can probably tell, I am no fan of G**gle and haven't been since about 2 years after G**gle first launched their search as a beta).

Whilst I don't have any compelling need or requirement to use any of the products you mention I fail to see what is so great about any of them, with perhaps the exception of search, which pretty much gets worse by the day anyway.

"Google's innovation is really to do with actually making products usable and GOOD"...

I would argue with your assertion that G**gle products are, for the most part, 'GOOD' (why so shouty?) on both technical and semantic levels. A raft of Google code I have seen leaves quite a bit to be desired. Semantically, 'good' is certainly not a word I would use in connection with G**gle. But then, the contextual meaning of 'good' may be different for me. If you were to replace the word 'good' with 'adequate' or 'barely adequate' I may be more inclined to agree.

Old n Cynical

"This company [Google] has innovated exactly once (search)."

Even that assertion is, to some degree, open to debate.

Somedays I yearn for the original AltaVista, Deja News and my old Gopher client. Them's were the days. But I digress. Back to the article...

"There was a 10- or 15-year period when "the issuance of software patents was too lax". That really should be, 'There has been a continual issuance of software patents, when there should have been exactly zero'.

The problem is not lax software patents. The problem IS software patents. They are, to quote one of the kids, 'Mahoosive suckage'.

'Mahoosive suckage'? FFS, did my generation really sponsor such bastardisation of the English language? We did? Meh, my bad innit!

Mass ASP.NET attack causes websites to turn on visitors

Old n Cynical

Dear flamebait...

Shall I call 'the men in white coats' or would you prefer to do that for yourself ;)

Old n Cynical


"Mass ASP.NET attack causes websites to turn on visitors"? Whatever. It's clearly a SQL injection attack. The fact that it may be more prevalent on Windows Servers does not make it 'ASP.NET attack'. Poor title, probably for bait.

Any developer, on any platform, that does not explicitly distrust all incoming data and subsequently sanatise it, should not be a bloody developer. I am amazed just how many sites and prop/open-source solutions (on both MS/Linux) I have seen are susceptible to SQL injection. There's a lot of poor developers out there, on all platforms.

As with all SQL injection attacks, the problem is the developer - simples.

Apple's US bid to ban Samsung tabs hinges on design

Old n Cynical


""In Australia and Germany, where bans are already in place, Apple successfully argued that once a punter buys a Samsung tablet they're unlikely to switch into the Apple ecosystem, so Samsung will have gained a lifelong customer through the use of an infringing product. That's very self-deprecating for Apple"

Oh dear. What a pity. Never mind.

Me? I would take a Galaxy over an Apple any day as I prefer to buy into chioce, not a dictatorship.

ISPs end PM's web smut block dream

Old n Cynical

Yesterday both links were publically accessible (for me). Today the 1st is offline and the 2nd paywalled.

The figures quoted were from Home Office data released after an FOI request. For the most part, and from further reading, it *appears* that the declarations of faith were there before the crimes were committed. In some cases however, it is obviously a case of 'Oh shit, too late. Better find God.'

I did find it interesting to note how crime types were 'distributed across faiths' however, especially considering that Christians were apparently 50% more likely to commit a sex crime than say, athiests. I struggle to understand that personally, but thems the figures I saw.

Old n Cynical

Dear Reg Bailey

You want to protect our children? Really, first let's take a quick peek to see how you religious lot do this then shall we...



An extract form the 2nd link: "The proportion of all prisoners declaring any faith compared with those with none is about 2:1 but among those convicted of sex crime it rises to 3:1. The trend is marked across many faiths, including Buddhism, Anglicanism, Free Church Christianity and Judaism. "

Mr Bailey, maybe the best way you can help would be to STFU and censor your own zealotry and twaddle first.

Mr Bailey sir, prey tell how it feels to wear that penis atop your neck.

Smut oglers told to opt in to keep web filth flowing

Old n Cynical


"I fear British politics goinjg the same way as the USA"

That'll be us fucked then...

Still, at least our 1st black PM wll get a Nobel for doing, well, jack shit!

Old n Cynical
Black Helicopters

I heard on the BBC news that a BT 'insider' was quoted as saying that this would mean that a Wikipedia search for Al Qaeda would fall foul of the filter.

To quote the article, "The restrictions are designed to protect children from sexualised content?" OK, so - if the BT source I mentioned is in fact correct - can someone explain to me how an Al Qaeda shoe bomber, for example, is deemed 'sexualised content'?

First point then: It's [apparently] not just about porn or sexualised content as some, including Dave the Dick, seem to suggest. Its about inappropriate content. This is a very important distinction to draw IMO. Who is it that is deciding what this 'inappropriate' content is? The ISPs, the government, some useless quango, or a combination of these 3?

I am therefore a little intrigued. If the BT source is correct - surely news broadcasts showing graphic scenes of violence will be filtered? If not, then the rules are not constant and - in my mind - the system becomes suspect. If news reports depicting violence are censored, then the filter will be deeming 'real life' inappropriate :)

Second point: The system is opt in. You have to declare your intentions to view what someone else deems as inappropriate for you. Inappropriate != illegal, if it were I would not take too much of an issue, but it is not. Why should anyone have to declare their intention to view legal matarial that some zealot deems inappropriate?

A preliminary set of questions I would like answered includes:

1) Who will have direct access to the list of those opted in?

2) Will the list be shared, if so, with who and how?

3) Will requests for blocked or filtered content be logged?

Now consider the 4 ISPs involved: BT, TalkTalk, Virgin and Sky and put on your tin-foil hat... Remember Phorm? Recall the then Governments failure to act on the 'illegal' BT/Phorm trials? Could it be that successive Governments simply want backdoor, grass roots surveillance?

Further consider - with your tin-foil hat - that Phorm was opt-out. This is opt in.

In reality I do not wear a tin-fol hat, but I am a cynic and I am beginning to see a pattern.