* Posts by Dave the Cat

120 publicly visible posts • joined 14 Feb 2012


UK spends £36m on 18 little 'bullet-proof' boats to protect Royal Navy assets

Dave the Cat

Re: No sign of armament

Certainly sir, would you like your freedom packages delivered in 20mm, 40mm or 105mm size?

'Sophisticated' cyber attack on UK Labour Party platforms was probably just a DDoS, says official

Dave the Cat

Re: Why assume mischief when stupidity is just as plausible?

You don't need to visit their site to know that the offer is 'Free sweets and a unicorn' for everyone.

Dave the Cat

Re: Meanwhile, over at Guido's..

"It's Government/Parliamentary IT remember, so probably more than enough..."

It's not even that, it's Labour's own IT.

The National Cyber Security Centre hasn't even classed it as a level six 'attack' which tells us all we need to know. At worst this is a low-level unsophisticated DDoS attack.

Having previously worked with a Labour constituency office on their GE campaigns, I can guarantee you, the vast majority will not have pre-ordered their leaflets and will have left it to the very last minute before trying to finalise their leaflets. This election, perhaps more than others, has been all about last-minute policy announcements and changes, you can't blame them for leaving it to the last minute so they have the most up-to-date policy information. It's far more likely that the systems have just been overwhelmed with the volume of requests.

I'm sure there'll be a member of the 'faithful' along shortly to tell us this is yet another example of an underhanded 'establishment' stitch-up.

UK cautiously gives Huawei the nod for 5G network gear sales

Dave the Cat

Re: Mayhem strikes again

What war? The war over the SCS? It's not in China's interest to start a war with anyone in the west. Their economy would be crippled within weeks.

As outlined above. It'll be managed by British workers. I'd find it very hard to believe they would shut the plant down.

Descent of the Machines: Aussie firm boasts of underwater drone swarms

Dave the Cat

Re: I thought the idea was to put less plastic in the ocean.

You might like this...


Early days, but an interesting idea....

Yorkshire cops have begun using on-the-spot fingerprint scanners

Dave the Cat

Re: "App on their smartphones"

It's unlikely the ICO would allow forces to require that officers install this on their personal mobiles and even less likely that the police FED would allow it.

I would imagine that come the end of the shift, just like I do with my work mobile, I hand it over to the person taking over from me.

Trident nuke subs are hackable, thunders Wikipedia-based report

Dave the Cat


Jesus, not this again. How many times does it need to be said? The UK does not require the permission of the US to use our deterrent, the UK does not need launch codes from the US and the US doesn't have a cut off switch to prevent the UK using it's deterrent.

In the unlikely event that the UK looses off all it's missiles, yes, the US could make life difficult then by refusing access to Kings Bay where the common pool of Trident D5 missiles are stored. This is however a bit of a mute point as the UK has ownership of 58 missiles and circa 200 warheads distributed in four boats, 8 missiles per boat, 6 warheads per missile for a total of 196 warheads deployable at any one time, so there'd be little point picking up the missiles in Kings bay as we'd have little to put on them, at least in the short term.

However if it came to that there'd be bigger issues, like the continued existence of the United Kingdom, to worry about.

Dave the Cat

Re: Boom

@ AC

The Vanguard boats were designed to carry 16 missiles each with 12 independent warheads (MIRVs) for a total of 192 warheads per boat. This is the thing with nukes, and the Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) doctrine, once your past a few tens of warheads, ultimate numbers don't really mean that much. Even if only 50% of UK warheads were to get through, that's still enough to destroy several major Russian cities and quite literally millions of it's citizens. Sure Russia might be able to turn the UK "to a glass lake" but we can wipe out a huge chunk of the Russian population in return. No one wins, and that's the whole point of MAD.

Currently the Vanguard boats deploy with 8 missiles on board, with each missile carrying 6 warheads. Following the 1998 strategic defence review, the UK has <200 warheads. Still enough to do serious damage and still the whole point of MAD.

Ubuntu 'weaponised' to cure NHS of its addiction to Microsoft Windows

Dave the Cat

I don't disagree in any way Ken, I'm all for the move but I just don't see it happening any time soon. I can't speak for all trusts but certainly in the handful I've worked at, I can't see it happening for a decade at least.

It'll take several more WannaCry type incidents and several more huge security breaches before the people holding the purse strings will register that something needs to be done. They'll then set up a task force to examine what needs to be done, this will run for a minimum of two years. The task force will be made up of a horde of finance and procurement people, staff representatives in the form of union reps (who's job is solely to be difficult, irrational and obstinate) and a lone brow beaten representative from IT. They will then inevitably recommend the path of least resistance which will be Microsoft.

Dave the Cat

I've been in NHS IT for 15 years and as much as I personally like this idea, it simply won't happen.

Too many people, with too many vested interests have their fingers in too many pies. At a local level, finance directors simply won't understand the rationale and cost behind the change, and believe me no amount of talk of long term savings will register with them, they have a tough enough time balancing the books year to year yet alone looking 3, 5, 10 years down the line.

Operations managers will decry the disruption which will, without a shadow of doubt, be massive. Regardless of how well it's planned, this is the NHS, it will go to shit. I guarantee it.

There will be uproar from staff and the ever difficult unions some of whom will feel personally affronted that they no longer have access to MS Office, regardless of the open source versions being just as good.

Then there are the technical issues, there are so many archaic and disparate software systems and databases at so many different hospital trusts and even down to individual sites within single trusts.

It all boils down to one simple thing, money. If this were resourced properly it could work, however it won't be. It'll be thrown together on a shoestring at best.

Blighty's first aircraft carrier in six years is set to take to the seas

Dave the Cat

Are there other crustacean based units of measurement?

Tesla death smash probe: Neither driver nor autopilot saw the truck

Dave the Cat

Re: Right, $50 of bars will stop a 4000lb car going 74mph.

@Otto is a bear

Having lived next to a hump back bridge for years, I can say with some authority that truckers seem to see the signs more as a challenge than a warning. I quite regularly see trucks taking a run up so even if they are low enough to get hung up the momentum gets them over.

Teen texted boyfriend to kill himself. It worked. Will the law change to deal with digital reality?

Dave the Cat

Re: "What laws already exist that cover this?"

@Prst. V.Jeltz

"I'm sure the state would find something to charge him with"

In that case "they'd" just drop a bomb on him from a predator drone... sadly this isn't an option in this case...

However, nothing can detract from the fact she is an utterly appalling example of "humanity".

US spook-sat buzzed the International Space Station

Dave the Cat

I don't recall reading anything about a specific target on it, but it does have target markers near the docking ports to line up incoming resupply runs.

I did wonder if USA 276 was a SIGINT satellite and was perhaps calibrating it's systems but according to Wikipedia (so taken with a pinch of salt) it's a radar imaging satellite.

Maybe they were making a 3D model of the ISS, but I'm pretty sure there's cheaper ways for them to do that!

Royal Navy's newest ship formally named in Glasgow yard

Dave the Cat

Re: How about..

"HMS Yer Talk Shite Hen"

Britain's on the brink of a small-scale nuclear reactor revolution

Dave the Cat

Re: Wasn't Fukushima a "fail-safe" design?

Christ, you really don't know what you're talking about do you?

UK.gov confirms it won't be buying V-22 Ospreys for new aircraft carriers

Dave the Cat

The carriers were designed to fit the osprey from the outset, of course this was promised by the same BAE that said they would be built "for but not with" catapults and traps... we all know how that turned out...

Sysadmin finds insecure printer, remotely prints 'Fix Me!' notice

Dave the Cat

Up until about a year or so ago I had a client who was on the more challenging end of the scale to deal with. One of the dangerous types who has a tiny amount of IT knowledge, you know the type... he installed iTunes all by himself so that made him a master of everything involving 1s and 0s, well in his mind at least.

He ran a small office of solicitors and decided to upgrade his printer to one of the new swanky HP all in one laser jobs with the HP ePrint service. Despite my suggestions to turn the feature off, he insisted he KNEW it was safe and secure, I mean what would I know?

I suggested he perhaps use the feature to limit it to known email addresses etc. but no, there it sits open to the world for all to abuse. I warned him this was a bad idea but after a particularly depressing discussion with him, about how he was the master of all technology I decided I no longer wished to take his money and we parted ways.

A close friend still works at that office and apparently he's completely baffled as to why his printer randomly spits out full pages of black and cyan, magenta and yellow, ten pages at a time.... I know why....

Please come back! TalkTalk woos customers with broadband offers

Dave the Cat

Come back? No chance. Talk Talk cooked their goose with their piss poor, sneering attitude to customer service.

Talk Talk could offer to pay my line rental and service charge for life and I'd still opt to pay someone else.

British military laser death ray cannon contract still awarded, MoD confirms

Dave the Cat

Re: The Usual UK Government Leaches Reinventing the Wheel

'Instead of enriching the usual financial freeloaders, why doesn't the UK government do a deal with it's 'best friend' nation (allegedly the US of A) and buy some of the work the US government has already paid for?'

Who do you think did all the initial research? Hint: It wasn't us...

Dave the Cat

Sod the laser cannons, where's the frikkin' rail guns we've been promised for years?

Build your Type 26 warships next year? Sure, MoD – now, about that contract...

Dave the Cat

Re: Have they finished the aircraft carriers yet?

They planned to use electromagnetic catapults so wouldn't have needed the steam...

British defence minister refuses to rule out F-35A purchase

Dave the Cat

Re: V-22 Ospreys?

Sadly the RN and MoD have already ruled out a V-22 purchase which is a great shame as this one airframe can accomodate all the ancillary uses: CoD (CMV-22B variant), AWACS (EV-22 variant) and Tanker using a palletised system with a drogue out the back door (less Heath Robinson than it sounds!)

Hopefully they might change their mind but if they do you just know they'll c0ck it up somehow....

Dave the Cat

Re: A is actually not a bad piece of kit

To be fair while not overtly supporting the UK, Regan did plan to help if the crapola really hit the fan:


Dave the Cat

Re: A is actually not a bad piece of kit

"By my understanding there isn't a vertical take off version."

This seems pretty vertical to me....


Dave the Cat

Re: If memory serves me right...

Your memory does indeed serve you correct.

The carriers were supposed to be designed 'for but not with' catapults and arrester gear. BAE did no serious design work on this after 2006 despite continuing to suggest to the Labour government of the time that they were. Hence the rather embarrasing senario when the Tory government decided to go with the cats and traps option after the 2010 SDR, at this point they still understood that this was possible, only to be told by BAE afterwards "Erm.... actually you know what we promised? Yeah we didn't do it and now you can't"....

General Atomics was contracted to install an electromagnetic catapult but informed the government that BAE had been somewhat economical with the truth of 'For but not with' and that it would cost nearly £2bn to install them and put back delivery of Queen Liz back to 2023 at the earliest.

Cheers BAE another monumental F**k up.

Scientists to IPCC: Yes, solar quiet spells like the one now looming can mean Ice Ages

Dave the Cat

Re: @Brian Miller - Baked? Frozen? It's the weather.

Yes because realclimate.org is so impartial....

US House Republicans: 'End net neutrality or no debt ceiling deal' – report

Dave the Cat

Re: They did add a pony

"...and how she would have loved a little education as to what foods can be both cheap and nutritious...." Ah but surely educating someone to help themselves get the best out of what they can afford would be seen as some form of "socialism" to the enlightened members of the GOP and therefore to be declared "unAmerican"

Murrica' F**k Yeah!

Don't tell the D-G! BBC-funded study says Beeb is 'too right wing'

Dave the Cat

Precisely, one wonders who Mike Berry would have them interview on a piece about financial matters... a representative of the "Inclusive, one-eyed lesbian mothers against fracking alliance of coalitions" perhaps?

US gov preps sale of TOP SECRET disease research island

Dave the Cat

Re: Asbestos and NIMBY's

"It's the three phase bit that's not compatible with the average toaster"... True but a three phase toaster... what a thing! No more waiting around for the damn thing to pop....

Autogyro legend Ken Wallis hangs up wings at 97

Dave the Cat

RIP Ken. I hope the flying is better where you are now.

A pint shall be had in your honour this evening.... Condolences to his family and friends.

Boffins confirm quantum crypto can keep a secret

Dave the Cat

Ok I've got a hard enough time getting my head around regular encryption. My brain now hurts, a lot.

Oh noes! New 'CRISIS DISASTER' at Fukushima! Oh wait, it's nothing. Again

Dave the Cat
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Re: "vast amounts of toxic waste that must be handled"

There's also the Canadian CANDU reactors. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Candu

US cops make 'first ever' Bitcoin seizure following house raid

Dave the Cat

Thanks for that... coffee all over my screen and keyboard. :)

Radio hams tell Ofcom: Put that Wi-Fi mob back in their place

Dave the Cat

Re: Hang on...

Was it Lester Haines? I for one would be interested in a "Current Overview of HAM for Dummies"...

Whoever recently showed us the secret documents: Do get in touch

Dave the Cat

Re: Are you sure you want to do this?

You forgot the chablis to go with the raw meat... ;-)

Students outraged: Computer refuses to do any work for entire week

Dave the Cat

Re: wtf?

"why don't they phone the admissions department of the University/College and actually tell them that they want to accept an offer?"

Because UCAS has a monopoly on this and they have to follow the correct procedure through UCAS or some jobsworth will tell them they can't go where they want etc.etc. it's all bollocks tbh.

Graphene QUILT: A good trampoline for elephants in stiletto heels

Dave the Cat

Re: What's the problem? Simply use the previously tried and tested method.

Boo to the humourless bastard who downvoted this post.

O2 brushed off outsourcing 'rumour' - but it's happening ... to THOUSANDS

Dave the Cat
Thumb Up

Re: Instead of money losing call centers

I fear that's too much like common sense there ecofeco... Why spend money fixing a problem for all devices if only 50% of people complain about it... fix the problem after the fact and save 50%... I abandoned O2 long ago, I'm very glad I did.

Not cool, Adobe: Give the Ninite guys a job, not the middle finger

Dave the Cat

Re: Ugh. Adobe.

I hope Adobe dies a horrible death for their repeated failures to; listen to the people that keep them in business, sort out their exploit ridden software, sort out a decent updating system etc. etc.

Turn off the mic: Nokia gets injunction on 'key' HTC One component

Dave the Cat

Re: Could anybody explain...

I'm not hugely up to date with these things but my understanding is that something about it's design allows it to tolerate and record much louder sounds without distorting, this allows the user to make perfect recordings in what would normally be very problematic for anything except high end recording kit. A poster above mentioned that it can faithfully record up to 160db which in anyone's book is bloody loud...

Stop excluding vulnerable Brits from digital agenda - MPs

Dave the Cat

Should those who pay taxes be subsidising a broadband connection for those on jobseekers allowance?

NASA chief: Earth is DOOMED if we spot a big asteroid at short notice

Dave the Cat

Great Idea, I'm onboard, but...

Sadly Sir, you've applied logic and reason to where little or none exists!

BOFH: Can't you just ... NO, I JUST CAN'T

Dave the Cat
Thumb Up

Re: Spot on

"I need a cattle prod..."

Seconded!! Alternatively, have they started selling Tasers to mebers of the public yet???

** wanders off to find Taser website.....

APPLE: SCREW YOU, BRITS, everyone else says Samsung copied us

Dave the Cat

Re: Called it

@ AC 08.13

"Look at all of you fandroids getting off on this silly webpage. As much as I can see your resentment against Apple (truly biased!).... bla bla blollocksy bla..."

Spoken like a true fanboi....

McKinnon will not be extradited to the US, says Home Secretary

Dave the Cat
Thumb Up

Re: "...a statute of limitations on computer crime?..."

Thanks Ted.

Dave the Cat

Re: Good, but he should still stand trial for his alleged crimes

@ AC 15.52

I'm not sure if your post was aimed at me or the other posters but here goes; For one, I'm not sure anyone has posted anything ghastly, a crime has allegedly been committed, the prime suspect for that should face justice for his actions. Having a disability like Aspergers cannot, and should never be a means to escape justice.

I'm not sure I fully follow your point, drinking alcohol isn't illegal in this country, on the other hand using your PC to illegally access a computer system(s) for which you are not authorised to do so, most certainly is illegal. I have to say I don't associate with people who smoke cannabis any more, at least as far as I know, heck I may have even tried it myself many moons ago, (but i didn't inhale ;-)) so should I report myself for something that last happened 20 years ago? Really?

I do take a liberal interpretation of speed limits when road conditions allow however whilst yes, legally speaking, speeding, even when road conditions allow, is illegal and therefore "bad", it's not quite in the same league of "bad" as hacking into the military and scientific computer systems of an ally nation.

As for what crimes he's alleged to have committed, I'm no lawyer but I'll kick off with sections one and two of the Computer Misuse Act for a start.

Now, the question of whether he will stand trial here is another matter, it's my understanding that the processing his computer after his arrest was not in line with DPP guidelines as a result of US over eagerness (quelle suprise).

I for one am glad that he is not being sent to the US, however I do also hope that he faces a court to account for his [alleged] actions.

Dave the Cat

Re: Good, but he should still stand trial for his alleged crimes

My brother has Apergers and he sure as hell knows right from wrong. In fact it's his ranting about how he shouldn't get off scott free when he read the story that prompted me to make my post.

I agree that sometimes people with other forms of autism sometimes don't know the difference, however it is my, and my bother's, understanding that most if not all aspergers sufferers do know that difference.

Dave the Cat

Re: "Years of Misery"

While I fully agree that this has gone on far, far too long. The "years of misery" are, as others have said, in part due to his constant appeals and re-appeals. That's not to say I think he was wrong to do so, I'd sure as hell to the same if I were in his boat, however a crime has [allegedly] been committed and he should have to stand trial for that crime in the country where they were apparently committed. Just because you've managed to drag out the and won the extradition appeals process does not mean you should be excused of your alleged crimes.

Though that said, I guess there a statute of limitations on computer crime? (I probably should know that anyway)