* Posts by glen waverley

176 publicly visible posts • joined 24 Aug 2012


Two Sundays wrecked by boss who couldn't use a calendar

glen waverley

Re: At least make sure your contract include TOIL

Or what we in Oz call penalty rates. IE saturday morning = time and a half or 1.5X, Saturday arve and Sunday = double time or 2X.

TOIL is a swiz as you never seem to be able to schedule the time off in lieu.

I suspect the US model might be ordinary time. Pls don.t tell me its free as in "we expect commitment"

Google tells popup ads to p*** off on mobes

glen waverley

Re: Cookies

AC says "Yeah, fuck the EU and their pro-privacy laws. Who needs privacy, seriously."

Right on. Good irony.

NASA tried turning lost spacecraft STEREO-B off and on again... but it didn't work. True story

glen waverley

The B ark?

See title.

Microsoft can't tell North from South on Bing Maps

glen waverley

how americans learn geography ...

"Seeing as they have never gone to war with the Aussies, how can they know where Australia is?"

Battle of Brisbane? WW2. The ever reliable source has details.


Alleged Aussie plum plucker pleads guilty to motel tissue swipe

glen waverley

Re: nasties

Tiggity "Is emergency medical treatment free in Oz?"

All hospital treatment in Oz is free. Some conditions: have to be a resident of Oz (so visitors not included); there might be a waiting list if not urgent, so can be a problem for itinerant workers (which this guy might be) as you are on the list at a specific hospital.

Remember those stupid hoverboards? 500,000+ recalled in the US after they started exploding

glen waverley

bored much?

AndyS "I put an axe through a fairly large li-ion pack at the weekend."

Bet that broke the monotony of a boring weekend...

Gun-jumping French pols demand rapid end to English in EU

glen waverley

Re: Sorting out a new PM is going to be amusing.

Lars "His dog saw a stick of dynamite fly into the river and retrieved it". That joke was probably invented during Nobel's lifetime and has then travelled the world like jokes do."

See also The Loaded Dog by Australia's favorite poet and story teller Henry Lawson.

T-Mobile Czech ad man steals, sells, 1.5 million customer records

glen waverley

Re: forgive me correcting your correction

"data are (sic) safe”

And is it not usual for the sic to be in square brackets thus "...[sic]..."? To show it is an editorial comment, and not part of the original piece.

Ex-SAP exec and pals accused of $500,000 insider trading scam

glen waverley

It's in the subhead "folks got greedy"

Said it before, and I'll probably get to say it again...

You can catch a lot of bad guys just by finding the greedy and the stupid.

Buggy vote-counting software borks Australian election

glen waverley

Re: News to me

bep "Otherwise they should get out of the job of being the Australian Electoral Commission."

Actually, the AEC *do* count every vote. It's the NSW Electoral Commission who are made to use the sample method. Two different organisations reporting to two different governments.

The joys of living in a federation.

glen waverley

Re: WTF?

John savard "If a candidate has over 50% of the vote, he wins."

Sorry, what you describe is preferential voting for single member electorates. But what the article and the great Antony Green are describing is a counting system for multi member electorates, like NSW upper house or NSW local councils. AKA proportional representation.

The crucial difference is quotas. If a candidate gets more than 1/(vacancies+1), she is elected. Then her surplus votes above the quota get distributed to the candidate who got her 2 vote. If that 2nd candidate now has a quota, he is elected and the third prefs (from candidate 1) are now distributed. And so on until all vacancies are filled.

The question is: what are her excess votes? 1) Do you just put the ballot papers on a pile till you get to a quota, then look at the 2s, 3s etc of the next ballots you come across? 2) Or do you check all papers and then distribute the papers at a reduced value? (There is a formula but I can't be bothered looking it up now.)

Method 1 worked in pre computer days, especially for large (whole of state) electorates. Method 2 works in our present computer days. (The electoral commission does have to key every ballot paper into a counting system, but that can be done, even with Tasmania's Robson rotation or the ACT's scrimble scramble.)

But seems NSW entrenched method 1 just as computers started to take over in the mid-late 1970s.

Irish readers may be more familiar than US or UK readers with how to count ballots for multi member electorates. The Dail uses much the same system as Oz senate, local councils and Tas and ACT assemblies.

Developer waits two years for management to define project

glen waverley

"While workers sorted out desks and networks and other niceties..."

I know you didn't intend it, but it is possible to read that sentence to imply that the crack team of developers somehow weren't workers.

I certainly didn't read it that way.

But I have played a fair amount of office cricket over the years while waiting for fit-out or for design decisions.

French B&Q equivalent 'hacked' to offer visitors vulgar DIY tools

glen waverley

My favorite flat bladed tool joke

Bloke is on a road, wet night, car on jack, trying to bash hub cap off with end of tyre lever.

Young lady driver pulls up beside him and says "Do you want a screw driver?"

He looks up and says "OK, but can you wait till I change this flat tyre first".

Belgian brewery lays 3.2km beer pipeline

glen waverley

Re: XKCD...

To my surprise, xkcd lists cheese as a liquid.

Mushroom farm PC left in the dark and fed … you know the rest

glen waverley

Re: Fast Typing is a MUST.

"controlling the mould injection system"

So I'm reading an article about an automtaed mushroom farm when the above appears. Than I wonder about the mention of molten aluminium.

Took me a couple of re-reads to realise the comment is not about the sort of mould that is related to fungus.

Oz PM's department red-faced after database leaks in the cc: field

glen waverley

... some DLP mechanism ...

Seeing as we have already agreed this article is about Australia, what relevance does the Democratic Labor Party have?

HR botches redundancy so chap scores year-long paid holiday

glen waverley

Re: The Real Ale Defence

Had a spruce ale at a micro brewery in Alaska once upon a time. Quite nice. The spruce provided the bittering and aromatics instead of hops.

Telstra's confession to DNS-messin' explains broadband borkage

glen waverley

ABC radio maybe read El Reg?

Was listening to ABC Radio flagship current affairs program PM on fri nite. After fairly serious item re outage, quotes from senior Telstra manager apologising, free modems on their way to subscribers, reasonable sounding explanation of cause of outage, all in all a line and length ABC report, reporter wraps up with this, as best as I can remember it.

"This is what is called a total inability to support usual processing, with a suitable acronym, (pause) TITSUP."

Good one Lucy Carter.

US 5th graders have a pop at paper plane record

glen waverley

Re: Spring Grove Elementary

So by the time the FAA approval comes thru, they'll be post-grad scholars at Spring Grove University?

Don't tell the Cabinet Office: HMRC is building its own online ID system

glen waverley

Re: May I just say...

Replying to myself, must resist urge to flame self.

There might be overlap between Verify and HMRC tool (tee hee, I said a rude word) in the case of a sole trader. Not the big game tho.

glen waverley

Re: May I just say...

Err, not the same thing.

Para 2 of article "One source said the department is building its own authentication capability that will deal with businesses – something the Government Digital Service's online authentication system Verify cannot do."

As I read it, Verify is for individuals (eg you or me), HRMC's tool is for businesses (partnerships, trusts, small companies, large multi national conglomerates with multiple subsidiaries, panamanian trustee companies administering the affairs of a dutch stichting that owns a unit trust that owns a City office block, ...)

Watchdog snaps: Privatise the Land Registry? What a terrible idea!

glen waverley

Bat shit is the only shit that has a specific term for it

Bat shit might have 2 specific terms.

What about - Boring as bat shit.

Snowden: NBN leaker raids a 'misuse' of Australian Federal Police

glen waverley

Re: Timing is interesting

Possible explanation for timing - we are currently in a double dissolution election. That means we don't currently have a senate. (Normally the senate stays in existence during an election period because the senators' terms are for a fixed period and 36 of the 76 senators aren't up for election.)

So maybe the plastics aka federal police saw a gap where no senators = no parliamentary privilege.

But as always, more likely to be a cock-up rather than a conspiracy

NBN leak pits minister against AFP commissioner

glen waverley

Re: parliament has been dissolved therefore no privilege therefore do not to be placed under seal

At risk of making El Reg the go-to place for Australian constitutional law, I offer the following.

As Conroy is/was/might-be-in-future a senator, Odgers Senate Practice could be relevant. So in chapter 2 we find this at http://www.aph.gov.au/About_Parliament/Senate/Powers_practice_n_procedures/odgers13?file=chapter02&section=07

"A question often asked is whether other persons, in providing information to members, are covered by parliamentary privilege. The answer to this question would also depend on the circumstances of the particular case and whether the provision of the information is "for purposes of or incidental to" proceedings in a House or a committee. If a person requests a senator to raise a matter in the Senate or a committee, or if a senator has in fact used information in parliamentary proceedings, such facts could determine whether the provision of the information is covered by the statutory expression.

"The provision of information to members may attract a qualified privilege under the common law interest and duty doctrine (the provider and the recipient of the information each have an interest or a duty in giving or receiving the information).

"It may also be held that there is a public interest immunity attaching to the provision of information to members of Parliament.

"These questions have not been adjudicated, although there is at least one British judgment suggesting that the provision of information to members may attract the interest and duty principle." End of quote.

Which seems to say it will all end up as a wig-fest and lots of lawyer's daughters will get lots of new ponies. As they should.

And even tho the Senate is currently dissolved, actions that took place when it was in existence are almost certainly subject to immunity. (If they are subject to immunity at all.)

The underbelly of simulation science: replicating the results

glen waverley

and this is called chaos theory...

From article "And in unsteady fluid dynamics, small floating-point differences can add up over thousands of time steps to eventually trigger a flow instability"

I think this was discovered by Edward Lorenz in 1963 with his butterfly effect.

But good to see this work showing sensitive dependence on initial choice of software and hardware packages.

Chaps make working 6502 CPU by hand. Because why not?

glen waverley

Vacuum tube (aka valve)

"one of the designers, Eric Schlaepfer, a vacuum tube enthusiast".

I know what I want to see. A combined valve 6502 and bbq!

Cabcharge trip logs exposed by security-free database probe

glen waverley

Not only threat of identity theft...

... name, pickup, dropoff location ...

That could also lead to personal safety risks, depending on how precise that info is. Hopefully it is just the usual lazy-arse data such as "office" or "suburb"* that shows on receipt, rather than eg GPS data. And as Chirgo hints, might be historical as well as current data.

Even name of employer (as cardholder) instead of name of passenger could be useful info to tie to addresses..

* The words office or suburb, not the actual name of the office or suburb. I think these are buttons on the cabcharge box in the vehicle.

IBM invents printer that checks for copyrights

glen waverley

Re: "A wizard did it" - again

Mongo "All the complexity of doing this (imagine even describing to a smart human how to do this task, let alone making a useful algorithm for it) blithely ignored. "

At a place I used to work at, we called this "design by waving your arms around". As in sitting in the design sessions and the person up the front with the whiteboard marker would just make a sort of whirly-hand gesture and draw a swirly box.

Icon cos that's what this technique normally did to delivery schedule.

Gov to pull plug on online ID verification portal Gateway in 2018

glen waverley

Adamg57 "As for establishing an audit trail, an additional column is needed to distinguish the agent from the account, but so long as this is included in the scope of the design the additional overhead is trivial"

Additional overhead (eg maintenance of who agent is, agent's contact details) might not be so trivial. At the customer level, agent can change, eg person can change accountant or solicitor. Or agent can change their details, eg name of practice (merger or sale), address, phone, etc - which can require a bulk update facility across many (>1) individual customer records.

Then there is a bigger design question - is it the practice itself or an employee/ partner in the agent firm who is the name (etc) in that column? Does that allow further access - read and/or update acess? If the employee, what if they move to another firm but the customer stays with the original firm? One or many staff in agent firm allowed access?

I've played this game. It isn't simple. Especially if all work can't be done and dusted in a single access session - and from other comments multiple access sessions do seem to be needed.

But upvoted you anyway for the statement re difficulty of retrofitting!

FBI director claims that videoing police is causing crime uptick

glen waverley

Call centre body cameras?

AC said Call centre staff... body cameras?

Really? But i think they are already recorded (for training and quality control purposes)

At the BBC, Agile means 'making it up as we go along'

glen waverley

Re: At the BBC, Agile means 'making it up as we go along'

Deltics "it's no good bringing in the plumbers before the foundations are laid"

But some plumbing does have to be done before the foundations get poured. OK, probably closer to drainage, but some pipes go *under* and through the foundations. Especially if it's a concrete slab.

Which is probably emphasising the point that no single methodology covers the big jobs. And it's the big jobs where the money can really be pissed away.

But have an upvote for the general thrust of yr post

You can always rely on the Ancient Ones to cock things up

glen waverley

Re: "likes to accumulate fat" (was: Simples.)

allthecoolshortnamesweretaken "You can add a grease separator to your plumbing - they are really fun to clean! "

When I were a lad in what were then the outer suburbs of an Australian metropolis, we had one of those. Called grease traps. Had to have them as suburb hadn't yet been sewered and it was a Bad Idea to let grease and fat into the septic tank*.

Never had to clean it, but looked inside it on a few occasions. Not nice.

* That is an actual septic tank for breaking down sewage and grey water, in case there are speakers of rhyming slang reading this.

We will end misleading broadband adverts, thunders ASA...

glen waverley

Re: The ASA have lost the plot...

Gerry 3 "It's like buying a Ford and then finding that you can only insure it with Ford, you can only fill up at Shell and you can only go shopping at Sainbury's."

That sounds very like something called third line forcing. It's illegal in Oz. Wonder what the law is in the Mother Country?

(For clarity, the word "line" doesn't refer to phone line in this context. I think it really means something like "line of business". The classic situation was buy the Ford car, have to insure with Ford Insurance Ltd.)

A Brit cloud biz and an angry customer wanting a refund: A Love Story

glen waverley

Re: "Everyone's an Engineer"

I've always assumed that "customer service engineer" was one of those piss-take titles like sanitation engineer (mentioned below). Never thought it was a serious job description.

Old, complex code could cause another UK banking TITSUP – study

glen waverley

Re: "Even if something has been written in Java in 90s that is still 20 years ago."

Smooth Newt "Software doesn't perish or rust like hardware, nor do the component parts wear out with use."

I used to work in a place where we used to get a phenomenon called "bit rot". Stuff would stop working for no apparent reason.

F-35s failed 'scramble test' because of buggy software

glen waverley

Re: Send in the drones

Mark 85 "Aircraft that are good at air superiority really suck at close support. No armor, no loiter time, no large capacity for armament, and too fast."

I once heard a story about a drug runner frequently bringing large amounts of weed into NT from possibly PNG in the early 1980s. He was using a Cessna or similar, and landing on old WW2 airstrips which were pretty common along the Stuart Hwy in the NT back then, from where goods could be conveniently loaded onto a truck.

Police had word of his runs and wanted surveillance, hopefully to grab him on the ground. RAAF got the job but only had F111s available. Job consisted of F111 at its slowest overflying Cessna which was not going anywhere its fastest, turning around to get behind Cessna, overflying again, and so on. Natch, the runner worked out what was going on and managed to time his landing for a turnback. Landed, got his gear onto a truck, job over.

Perth SmartRider public transport cards popped by student researchers

glen waverley
Big Brother

Enquiring minds want to know

Further and better details are needed! What was the hack?

Disclosure: I have a SmartRider card.

Who you callin' stoopid? No excuses for biz intelligence's poor stats

glen waverley

Re: what i remember from uni stats ...

Interesting reading. Thanx for that.

My takeaway: another example of the maxim that no plan survives contact with reality! As in letting the teachers pick the kids for the supplementary milk group.

(And the rich (less poor?) kids lost weight as they shed their winter clothes over the duration of the experiment.)

glen waverley

what i remember from uni stats ...

The only thing that I remember for sure from the stats units i did at uni is this ...

The man who developed student's t-test worked at the Guinness brewery.

Not quite the right icon but near enuff.

Stop using USB sticks to move kids' data, auditor tells Education Dept

glen waverley

Re: I cringe..

"something stored electronically as somehow more secure than paper"

Agree. Hard to leave a filing cabinet on the train

Netflix's $1.81 billion Q1 disappoints markets

glen waverley

Money isn't easy, but by, /By the time it's come by...

Tip of the hat to the sub for the oblique reference in the subhead to Spectrum's* "I'll be gone".

Given the nature of the IT world perhaps the rest of the second line might be also be relevant "By the time it's come by I'll be gone"

* That would be the 70s Aussie band Spectrum not the 80s pommy computer.

1,000 cats await stadium-sized sandwich bag launch

glen waverley

cross cultural units?

Struck me as odd that NASA offer "nearly the length of six cricket pitches".

Have they correctly converted that from baseball diamonds? NASA have form with conversions from one system of units to another

Britain is sending a huge nuclear waste shipment to America. Why?

glen waverley

order of magnitude?

140 Tonnes of waste = 1400000Kg of waste.

1 400 000 kg? I think not.

1 tonne = 1000 kg.

So 140 t = 140 000 kg.

Can't be arsed re-doing the rest of yr calcs.

We bet your firm doesn't stick to half of these 10 top IT admin tips

glen waverley

downvote cos ...

... of yr northern hemispherist attitudes.

Here I can see black swans whenever I feel like it. Only have to go to the river or the lake, depending which city I happen to be in.

Your pointy-haired boss 'bought a cloud' with his credit card. Now what?

glen waverley

I see your " IT by magazine" and raise it ...

by "IT by inflight magazine"

Used to work in an organisation where the senior execs spent most of their time flying around the country (yay! out of the office and out of our hair) in planes (boo! becos of exposure to inflight magazines so half baked strategic directions when they landed).

Bloaty banking app? There's a good chance it was written in Britain

glen waverley

surprised it hasn't been suggested ...

Bloaty McBloatface

Furious English villagers force council climbdown over Satan's stone booty

glen waverley

"roll away the stone"

Very nice Leon Russell reference (para 7). And it's Easter week too, so topical.

Icon for the journo (or the sub)

nbn special: See the FTTN and HFC cabinets coming to your street

glen waverley

Good work Simon

Since you asked for a respoonse: Good presentation, Simon. I've never seen the various bits of kit that get mentioned, so this helped me. The nodes are fairly big units aren't they? They won't easily fit on the footpath in inner city streets, I think. And will take up a fair bit of the nature strip in leafier suburbs. That might cause a few complaints.

Particularly liked the goldilocks comment re semi-rural places getting the best stuff. Weird how the technology fits in with reality on the ground.

More of this sort of multi-media thing, please! Especially where it adds to the written words.

A Logic Named Joe: The 1946 sci-fi short that nailed modern tech

glen waverley

3 men in a boat

Have an upvote for that