* Posts by Phil O'Sophical

4669 posts • joined 28 Oct 2011

Barmy ban on businesses, Brits based in Blighty bearing or buying .eu domains is back: Cut-off date is Jan 1, 2021

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: It's what a sad, angry minority wanted

a 7% hit to GDP is quite a good starter

We always knew there would be a temporary hit while agreements are re-aligned. What's important is how far our GDP growth exceeds the EU's in 5-10 years. Brexit was never intended to be a short-term magic fix, it's a means to a long-term end.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

If you leave the golf club, you aren't allowed to still use the course.

A sensible club would allow you to use the course if you paid visitors' green fees, knowing that you'd spend money in the bar afterward as well, and would welcome reciprocal playing agreements on your course. The EU just threw up a fence around the course, while those outside spend their money elsewhere.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: @codejunky

It may still come as a last minute two-fingers to Johnson.

Wouldn't "two-fingers" be more likely to be going the other way, ala Agincourt?

From the EU to BoJo it would be the finger, or maybe a "bras d'honneur".

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: @codejunky

as is evident from where the squeals are emitted from.

Mostly, it seems, from UK nationals who hold .eu domains, but don't want the bother of setting up an EU base to keep them. How hard would it be to get an accommodation address in an EU country like, say, Ireland? For that matter, Belfast would probably work, accepted as part of the UK but I doubt the EU would want to open a can of worms by claiming it isn't in Ireland!

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: It's what a sad, angry minority wanted

still sad, still angry, and even more of a minority now.

Proof, or is this just more desperate sour grapes? As I said above, I'm not at all sad, and irritated with the EU rather than angry. If we're more of a minority now, how did a pro-Brexit party get such a large majority in the last election?

They should be happy - they've destroyed the UK, they've got what they want.

I have absolutely no desire to destroy the UK, I want it to remain a strong world power. At the moment the person working hardest to destroy it is Nicola Sturgeon, with assistance from some EU members who would love the chance to smack the UK for daring to leave, and who have always found that a divide-and-conquer strategy is best for them. A United Kingdom had the power to make the EU's life difficult, 4 separate smaller squabbling nations would have been much easier to contain and ignore.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: victim mentality

What's really irritating is the Brexit supporters constant cries of 'oh wow is us, the EU are pulling all the benefits of EU membership, we thought we could leave the club and retain all benefits'

Not at all. We leave, of course we lose benefits that exist only because of membership. There aren't as many as people like to suggest, many of the benefits agreed between EU members actually come from pre-existing international agreements. The EU requires that they exist as a condition of membership, but they aren't made possible only because of membership.

What irritates us is when a particular proposed arrangement is clearly of some benefit to both the EU and a non-member like the UK, but the EU refuses to agree because any apparent benefit to the UK post-Brexit is unacceptable, even if it also benefits the EU.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

It's what a sad, angry minority wanted

The only sad and angry people I see are the ones who wanted to stay, and if you're in a majority how come you lost a referendum and three elections? Those of us who didn't want to stay in a failing political and monetary polity are quite happy at the moment, if a bit irritated at the EU's continued determination to punish the UK even at the expense of making its own life difficult.

As for the .eu domains, apart from those used by EU bodies, like the somewhat tautological "europa.eu", most seem to have been bought more as as a defence against cyber squatters than from any especial EU commitment.

The UK's favourite lockdown cheese is Big and Red but doesn't require a stinking great audit after consumption

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Apple-related cheese?

Proper apple-smoked cheese is nice, but most of what you get in supermarkets is smoke-flavoured, not smoked, and has a horrible bitter chemical taste.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: American Cheese

I remember a French friend's first visit to the US, and her reaction on discovering aerosol cheese...

Devuan Beowulf 3.0 release continues to resist the Debian fork's Grendel – systemd

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: "It solves a problem that people have."

left everybody to come up with thier own shutdown strategy.

# sync;sync;halt

always seemed fine to me...

Hoverbikes, Hyperloops and sub-orbital hijinks: Yes, the '3rd, 4th and 5th Dimensions of Travel' are coming soon

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Meanwhile, back at the ranch...

Looks like VA is finally entering the 20th (sic) century!

Top speed only 60-90 miles per hour? More like the 19th century...

Contact-tracer spoofing is already happening – and it's dangerously simple to do

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

But not necessarily your enemy either.

Home Office waves a cool £1bn to outsource handling of British visa, citizenship applications

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: We know how this ends

Probably not Crapita, more likely to be someone like VFS Global who provide this sort of service for 60+ governments worldwide.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Keeps at it ...

the private sector, whose main and only interest is to make money with the least effort.

When it's my tax money being spent, I expect it to be used to get best results for least expense, no matter whether it is a public or private organization spending it.

Past experience has shown that the public sector does not understand the concept of "value for money" in the slightest.

Building society caught in middle of high street sharing a little too much on TeamViewer

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Inexcusable

I remember the advert. Couldn't have told you who it was an advert for, though.

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

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Oregon Software Pascal

Not necessarily :) The standard says that REAL and INTEGER are the same size, but the Apple ][ p-code version used 4 bytes for INTEGER and 5 for REAL (1 exponent and 4 mantissa), which played merry hell with COMMON blocks and EQUIVALENCE statements.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Oregon Software Pascal

you could write a program in Pascal and run it on a DEC PDP-11, VAX,or MSDOS on the desktop in the days before Windows existed.

That was trivially easy in Fortran (or at least F IV and F77) as well, as long as you avoided the Apple II p-code version.

So you really didn't touch the settings at all, huh? Well, this print-out from my secret backup says otherwise

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Ah, customers.

if he's so good at management why's he running freelance courses in management

As my grandmother would have said, "Them as can, do. Them as can't, teach."

Got $50k spare? Then you can crack SHA-1 – so OpenSSH is deprecating flawed hashing algo in a 'near-future release'

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Old devices

It's rarely that black & white, though. I used to have a rack of a dozen old machines in a test lab, they were great for prototyping new builds of code where performance wasn't an issue. The code on the actual servers was often Beta, with potential security issues, so the system was on an isolated lab network.

The one downside was that the console access to each system was via SSH to a service processor which only supported old algorithms. The systems were obsolete, no-one was generating new firmware, so to login I had to override the block on unsafe algorithms. It didn't matter, the consoles were on a completely isolated management network. The alternative would have been to ask for a dozen new systems, an unnecessary expense that would probably have been reduced to one or two per annual budget cycle.

There are times when blocking old stuff by default, but allowing it to be selected, is justified.

Twitter ticks off Trump with new 'Get the facts' alert on pair of fact-challenged tweets

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Ooh, fun!

UK Govt & Tory tweets,

And Labour ones, and let's not forget the DUP and Sinn Féin, and Sturgeon of course.

Or maybe we should just exercise that most uncommon of skills, common sense?

Airline-chasing lawyers leap on Easyjet for £18bn after 9m folks' data, itineraries nicked

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

They also have your address and phone number.

Not according to the email I got from easyJet: "name, email address, and travel details ... information including where you were travelling from and to, your departure date, booking reference number, the booking date and the value of the booking were accessed", but no passport or credit card details.

Still, my address and phone number are public information anyway.

Like I say, annoying, but I wouldn't want to see them bankrupted for it.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Considering how many Easyjet customers (including me) have vouchers due to cancellations, this sort of lawsuit doesn't seem to benefit anyone. Landing EJ with a bill like that might just push them over the edge into bankruptcy, and everyone loses.

My personal info was affected by the breach, and some scammers now have details of flights that I didn't take, and a one-shot email address that is only used for EJ. It's mildly annoying, and I hope the ICO delivers a suitable smack on the wrist, but personally I have no desire to make lawyers rich over it. I'd prefer EJ to stay in business.

SpaceX Falcon 9 and Dragon cleared to hoist real live American astronauts into space

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: The slogan the is incomplete

Isn't he in lockdown in a fancy pad in Dublin?

Record-breaking Aussie boffins send 44.2 terabits a second screaming down 75km of fiber from single chip

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Correction

Maybe not. There was a story in the papers a week or so ago about a sex therapist who was finding an increasing number of people who were unable to get enough privacy in lockdown for their usual solitary relaxation.

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

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: I'm with you

the intensity of coffee

So we're not talking American coffee here, which has all the intensity of dishwater.

UK takes a step closer to domestic launches as Skyrora fires up Skylark-L

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Skylark

If only "Ecosene" was the "unknown metal 'X'"

A real loch mess: Navy larks sunk by a truculent torpedo

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Pure 'Carry on ' gold.

Search for "get_iplayer"

Beer gut-ted: As many as '70 million pints' spoiled during coronavirus pandemic must be destroyed in Britain

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Home delivery

Not in the US of course, but in a country capable of running HSTs it would be a workable alternative to flying.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Home delivery

a coast-to-coast same-day order can only be fulfilled by airplane.

Or a high-speed train.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

A month or so ago I read of bars in Boston ( United States one ) substituting daily deliveries of Guinness to the faithful just like we used to have milkmen.

Why on earth didn't British publicans do the same,

One Belfast pub did, untill some jobsworth police decided it breached the letter of the licensing regs:


Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Pasteur is turning over in his grave

not all beer in France is Pasteurized

Let them drink wine.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: "Nasty little nationalist."

can't even drag the North of *England* out of poverty,

selling an optimistic vision of the future can help people aspire to be greater than on their own

Bit of a contradiction there. Drag or inspire, which is it? Me, I prefer inspire.

Even if breaking from the UK causes economic hardship to Scotland, it's not stupid to think it would be worth it

That's the SNP ideal. The glory of reversing that defeat (or sell-out, as you prefer) 300 years ago is all that matters. Who cares about the economic future, Scotland will be "free". Might look good as an epitaph, not so great for the generations to come, at least those that can't emigrate.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Note

oil fields

Almost empty, and currently selling at $32 a barrel? Bit late to depend on those.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Pasteur is turning over in his grave

No requirements that I know of. Keg beer (served by gas pressure) is usually pasteurized, cask ale (served by hand pumps) usually isn't.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: K'in eejets.

I can't remember the time I saw a beer that was less than 4% on a beer tap,

Several good British cask ales come in around 3.9%. I prefer it, once you get over 5.5% or so it starts to get syrupy and headache-inducing, like some American IPAs.

Crooks set up stall on UK govt's IT marketplace to peddle email fraud services targeting 'gullible' punters

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Surely those are the easy voters to find?

If you don't LARP, you'll cry: Armed fun police swoop to disarm knight-errant spotted patrolling Welsh parkland

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: IT Angle?

More outside the UK: 52.1752303, 5.4197124 (Amersfort in the Netherlands)

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: WTF ?!!

with the police intentionally firing at the ground

That was how they were supposed to be used, so that they would give a disabling impact on the lower body, and not the serious injuries that could be caused by direct impact on the torso or head.

Rust marks five years since its 1.0 release: The long and winding road actually works

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

crusade against OOP

I've never used it, but I like it already!

ALGOL 60 at 60: The greatest computer language you've never used and grandaddy of the programming family tree

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge


Bonus for the CALCOMP drum plotters

I remember a friend at uni mapping out the Adventure Colossal Cave and having it plotted on one of them. It was on the wall of the terminal room for quite a while.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: .. never used .. ?

implied loops in I/O statements that allowed whole or even part arrays to be written out in a single PUT statement.

Borrowed from Fortran, I remember using those!

Worried about the magnetic North Pole sprinting towards Russia? Don't be, boffins say, it'll be back sooner or later

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Always wondered if that was a slow (in human terms but still a blink of the eye in geological ones), progressive rotation or it would get to a point and suddenly flip overnight...

There's a wikipedia article on it which suggests that ~5000 years is a likely timescale, with large variations. Not overnight, though.

DBA locked in police-guarded COVID-19-quarantine hotel for the last week shares his story with The Register

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: What a shit hole

Dosent warm weather kill this virus? i think i read that .

It doesn't survive long on surfaces in hot weather. No reported difference in person-person transmission.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: And this is why the Aussies are on top of it

Garbled and incoherent is what Boris does.

Yes, but he does it so well!

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: And this is why the Aussies are on top of it

Are there any news articles or summaries that could help inform me?


It is unclear why something designed to pump fuel into a car needs an ad-spewing computer strapped to it, but here we are

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Huh?

My uncle once borrowed my Dad's car, a Ford Corsair, and needed to put petrol in it. He couldn't find the filler on either side. Eventually someone in the garage found it, in the centre of the rear panel behind the hinged number plate.

'We're changing shift, and no one can log on!' It was at this moment our hero knew server-lugging chap had screwed up

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: marketing

"No idea why they were different!"

It's to stop the dev/support people screaming "No it doesn't" at them every time they lie to a customer about a product's features.

UK finds itself almost alone with centralized virus contact-tracing app that probably won't work well, asks for your location, may be illegal

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: @JulieM Of course, being centrally controlled

Actually they can't.

They have to distribute the source code.

Take a look at https://opensource.org/licenses and point out which parts of Apache, BSD or MIT require distribution of source code. GPL, Mozilla, CDDL and Eclipse do, the others don't.

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: Read the Act!

Do you honestly think that your government will think that the GDPR will apply to them after brexit is complete at the end of this year?

It's already enshrined in British law by the withdrawal legislation, and abiding by it will be a prerequisite for trade with EU countries. In any case, British data and consumer protection law has always been ahead of, and stronger than, EU minimums.

We beg, implore and beseech thee. Stop reusing the same damn password everywhere

Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

Re: In other news....

Surely no-one is really remembering a completely unique password for every single device, internet shop, social media site and forum they ever used.

Just use a password manager on your phone. Then you can lose them all at the same time.


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