* Posts by I am David Jones

111 publicly visible posts • joined 6 May 2012


OpenAI's DALL·E 3 teams up with ChatGPT to turn brainfarts into art

I am David Jones

Apropos Dall-E

I was quite surprised that my prompt, more-or-less “man in yellow jacket next to blue car”, kept throwing up images of a blue jacket and yellow car. I had to try lots of variations of the phrase before I got a blue car.

But I did eventually get what I wanted. Bizarre…

Magento shopping cart attack targets critical vulnerability revealed in early 2022

I am David Jones

“This isn't entirely unsurprising.”

Please don’t do this. So convoluted I’m not even sure if the intention was to convey lack of surprise (seems to fit the context better).

Most distant observed star is blue – and it isn't alone

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Can you see it with the naked eye or do you need a cardboard loo roll?

Arc: A radical fresh take on the web browser

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Where was the toxic negativity? I had exactly the same thought and a comment “not for me” does not equal “not for you”.

Where I have a choice I will use anything but a Chromium, purely for the sake of (a tiny contribution towards) protecting web standards.

Do Facebook's algorithms drive political polarization? Meta says no, but researchers say it's complicated

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„The papers, published in Nature and Science (here are the links to the two other studies), show that people's political opinions aren't generally swayed by political news being posted and shared on Facebook“

I guess what is relevant is whether, for those whose political opinions *are* swayed by FB, whether there is a tendency to move towards or away from the centre.

GNOME project considers adding window tiling by default

I am David Jones

Re: Killer app

I find windows snapping in Windows great. Four intuitive keyboard shortcuts, so useful.I was astonished that on my MacBook Air I have to faff about hovering or long clicking over a green microdot.

US senator victim-blames Microsoft for Chinese hack

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Thumb Down

Victim blaming?

I think the use of the term “victim blaming” in this context is totally wrong as it devalues the concept as it is generally used (eg rape/domestic abuse victims).

If you’re a megacorps up against state (-sponsored) adversaries then you have resources applenty and attacks are guaranteed (and to a large extent legitimate) so security is all down to you.

Lenovo Thinkpad Z13 just has this certain Macbook Air about it...

I am David Jones

Is it a Lenovo thing?

I’ve had a good few laptops over the years, and the Lenovo I briefly had was the only one that didn’t have working Ethernet or wifi after a clean Windows install.

I don’t care if the blame lies with MS or Lenovo, no way was I going to accept having to faff about with a separate computer to get the drivers to get Windows working on the Lenovo.

So I returned it and went looking elsewhere, and won’t bother even trying another Lenovo.

Balloon-borne telescope returns first photos in search for dark matter

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Thumb Up

Balloon telescope?

Nice idea!

Amazon: Diamonds are a quantum network's best friend

I am David Jones

Actually, I believe the main problem is the spreading of the pulse.

You start with a well defined pulse of light that is easy to detect. This contains a large range of frequencies.

As it travels down the fibre, the effect of the refractive index of the fibre depends on the frequency. So the different frequencies spread out and the pulse becomes a smear which is harder, and eventually impossible, to detect.

This is direct from old memory so apologies for any mistakes.

Just don’t ask me how this relates to entangled pairs…

Criminal records office yanks web portal offline amid 'cyber security incident'

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Re: Inside job?

“Saying that that proportions of the met have issues is not really any different to saying society at large has issues”

It absolutely is different in my book. People who are paid to police illegal behaviour, and who are given extra powers to do so, should be held to a much higher standard. Basically zero tolerance for their own illegal behaviour and for any colleagues who see it but don’t report it.

CAN do attitude: How thieves steal cars using network bus

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Re: Oh my god

It’s hardly “accessible” if you need to break open the car to get to it.

NASA names astronauts picked for next Artemis Moon test flight

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Re: what do you call...

And while we’re on the subject… why do we even have different names for the same profession based on nationality? Is this unique to spacefarers?

It’ll only get more ridiculous as the number of spacefaring nations increases, each desperately trying to come up with a catchy name that represents their nation.

They are all astronauts. End of. Rant over.

Boffins: Microgravity impacts cell repair systems in proteins

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Re: Doesn't Look Like Microgravity to Me

It looks like they just have a chamber rotating around a horizontal axis, eliminating the concepts of up and down or averaging out the effects of gravity. They use a vertical axis chamber to represent normal gravity. Doesn’t count as what I’d hope “simulated microgravity” to look like, but presumably it is sufficient for their purposes.

Forget general AI, apparently zebrafish larvae can count

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Re: Tigers vs Zebra (fish)

They sat around playing poker

Apple bags patent for folding phone that closes as it's dropped

I am David Jones

The patent system is blind to the amount of effort involved in leading to an innovation, and imo rightfully so. Why should there be no protection for an invention following a eureka* moment ?

How would you even begin to verify how much effort went into an invention?

*I’m not saying this constitutes a eureka moment. As I noted elsewhere, this is a patent application that has not yet been examined for novelty and non-obviousness.

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Beginner’s error

Dear oh dear. This is not a patent it is a patent *application*, ie it has not been examined yet.

Anyone want an International Space Station? Slightly used

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Just a small request

I don’t care where it lands, but could they arrange it to be an impressive fireball flying -at a safe height of course- over my house on a clear night?

Requiem for Google Reader, dead for a decade but not forgotten

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Re: Article written by an idiot

Is “technically stubborn” a criticism?

Why ChatGPT should be considered a malevolent AI – and be destroyed

I am David Jones


It would have been more sinister had it reported your death at some point in the future!

Porsche wants to sell you a rusty tailpipe soundbar for $12k

I am David Jones

For this much money…

…I’d at least want it to recreate the genuine exhaust sound with a little ‘start’ button and an accelerator.

Vroom vroom!!

Mars rover Curiosity reaches sulfate-rich Mount Sharp after 10-year journey

I am David Jones


That’d be 2.9754 nano% of the sheep velocity.

We've seen things you people wouldn't believe. A planet, dense as a marshmallow, that would float on water

I am David Jones

Until I see the planet actually floating in water, I refuse to believe your so-called ‘science’!

Liz Truss ousted as UK prime minister, outlived by online lettuce

I am David Jones

Re: If a mistake is bad enough ...

Despite living in Germany a while, I still can’t gauge how offensive English swear words are to Germans. Certainly they don’t baulk at f and s words in songs on the radio.

And ‘shitstorm’ seems to be widely accepted and it always makes me chuckle when I see it as a huge headline on the front page of a serious paper :)

UK government in talks with datacenter operators over blackouts

I am David Jones

Load shedding

Data centres can actually be useful for the grid as they can quickly reduce their energy consumption.

You just need to differentiate between high priority and low priority workloads with a corresponding price structure.

How to watch NASA Jupiter probe's flyby of Earth

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Re: Astounding...

It’s easy really, just aim for the Earth and miss

Water pipes hold flood of untapped electricity potential

I am David Jones

Re: Read it?

Maybe it’s just me but actually I think an article should be pretty self-contained and if it gives rise to obvious questions then it is fair that these are raised in the comments without expectation that everyone has to first study the source material used for the article.

AI recruitment software is 'automated pseudoscience', Cambridge study finds

I am David Jones

Re: Something better than AI

Better yet, randomly pick a candidate, take a small hammer and apply retrophrenology until you have the perfect employee!

Lufthansa bans Apple AirTags on checked bags

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Re: How many baggage handlers carry an iPhone?

That’s different I think - it’s the anti-stalking mechanism to detect if someone has slipped their AirTag in your pocket/bag/car. It takes a few hours to trigger so unless they’re actually nicking the bags the handler won’t be troubled.

SpaceX demonstrates that it too can shower the Earth with debris

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Re: Raising the odds?

“as the events are independent” [Citation needed]

NASA to commission independent UFO study

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Re: We're not advanced enough to understand "aliens".

Not really. Most alleged sightings seem to boil down to “small thing moving fast in the sky”. No smartphone will be able to capture that well, even if you had advance warning and could set up a tripod.

So for once I won’t fully agree with Randall https://xkcd.com/1235/

NASA's 161-second helicopter tour of Martian terrain

I am David Jones

Re: FYI 5.5 meters per second is about 20 kilometers per hour

The rule of thumb I use is to double the value of m/s to get an approximation for mph.

So 5.5 m/s is about 11mph.

If you want, you can then add 10% for better accuracy, which would take you to 12 mph.

Actual value is 12.3 mph.

AI models still racist, even with more balanced training

I am David Jones

Re: As I commented in an earlier story on AI

Given that nobody is totally open-minded and unbiased, you’re setting a high bar there. I’d settle for “as good as or better than an average, trained human”.

I am David Jones

Isn’t this just down to the fact that judging facial features will always be easier when the skin tone is lighter?

And by “fact” I mean “my totally unqualified assumption” :)

A proposal to beat below-the-belt selfies: Crowdsourced machine learning using victims' image stashes

I am David Jones

“there are some really sorry ass-guys out there that do not have a clue about what women want”

Not entirely surprising!


Nvidia CEO Huang jointly files patent for software tech in the metaverse

I am David Jones

The article links to a granted patent not a patent application. Filed in 2016 and granted Aug 2021.

Antitrust battle latest: Google, Facebook 'colluded' to smash Apple's privacy protections

I am David Jones

What the spokesperson said is factually correct but it’s a long way from being a denial of the allegations…

It's 'near-impossible to escape persistent surveillance' by American ISPs, says FTC

I am David Jones

Re: Yet Another Easy Fix (YaEF?)

So….. exactly what percentage of the general population do you think would find your solution to be “easy”?

WhatsApp's got your back(ups) with encryption for stored messages

I am David Jones

Re: Ah......end-to-end encryption.....criminals, "think of the children"....and so on.....

Actually the cleartext is “meh”.

User to chatbot: Help! My kid has COVID! Chatbot to user: Always wear a condom

I am David Jones

Re: "practicing safe sex is the way to help a child with COVID"

Safe sex is boring


I am David Jones

Re: Where did that chatbot answer come from?

It is sensible advice for anyone with a pregnant partner - you don’t want to get two birds up the duff!

Lawsuit claims hospital ransomware infection cost baby her life

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Re: Riiiiight

They could e.g. have been diverted to a different hospital that was fully functional.

And it seems they had people with the skills and experience in place, but were unable to contact them.

We have some sad news about Facebook. It has returned to the internet after six-hour mega outage

I am David Jones

Re: All their tools were down as well...

Even that won‘t help you if you’re locked out of the building. As Facebook techs were.

Too many eggs in one basket?

Airline meal-sized £700k awarded by UK.gov for green aviation: That's for eco-tech rather than planes, mind

I am David Jones

Re: wireless charging for electric planes

Absolutely! Every now and again I read about some development, like a new paint or wingtip design, that will save 1-2% in fuel and hence $billions in annual savings. But they’re happy to throw away 10-30% (or whatever it is) just for wireless charging???

I genuinely can’t think of a single advantage of wireless changing for a plane that is parked up for (dis)embarkation.

Same for cars tbh.

Having said all that, in-air wireless charging could be fun :)

Tobacco giants don't get to decide who does research on smoking. Why does Facebook get to dictate studies?

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What’s the difference?

Anyone can study social media/Facebook, just as anyone can study tobacco companies.

What I think this is about is getting privileged access to data/APIs to help with the research, and no doubt FB do indeed keep this for “friendly” researchers.

But I doubt that tobacco firms opened up their internal archives to any random person that asked…

NASA halts Mars comms for two weeks as Sun gets in way of Red Planet

I am David Jones

Re: Comms relays?

Pigeons can fly *around* objects. Are they not an option?

I am David Jones

This regolith…

…is it the broken remains of the stone tablets upon which the sacred Register articles were once chiseled?

Court of Appeal says AI software cannot be listed as patent inventor

I am David Jones

The invention itself is irrelevant

For those who are questioning the substantive merit of the food container invention, bear in mind that a patent application will not even land on an examiner’s desk until certain formal requirements are met. These include eg fees being paid and a valid inventor being named.

Without commenting specifically on Dr Thaler’s invention, many many patent applications have no chance of being granted and they should not be taken as indicative of how easy/hard it is to meet patentability requirements.

As I’ve said before, this is clearly a test case and the invention itself is irrelevant.

UK gives military's frikkin' laser cannon project a second roll of the dice

I am David Jones

“Directed energy weapon”

Erm…doesn’t that describe any non-chemical/biological weapon since homo-something picked up a rock?

Tech widens the educational divide. And I should know – I'm a teacher in a pandemic

I am David Jones

If the learning objective was “how to cope with business meetings, it was probably spot on!