* Posts by msknight

1281 posts • joined 28 May 2013


These Rapoo webcams won't blow your mind, but they also won't break the bank

msknight Silver badge

I want manual DOF control

...and I need it in hardware. And so do a number of my colleagues who work in cramped home conditions and need to throw what's behind us out of focus, without suffering the junk that the automatic teams blurring does, because it cuts off our hair, our glasses and if we hold anything up to camera, that's blurred out as well by the software...but that requires control over the focus and aperture... and none of the webcams out there are giving that. Some are in software, but I'm Linux and no one supports us. *sob*

I'm diabetic. I'd rather risk my shared health data being stolen than a double amputation

msknight Silver badge

How many people really know what it's costing them?

For those who work with I.T. we are aware of the data we generate, the systems we use, how that data is used, the risks and choices.

I would argue that a good portion of the population do not know this.

The population must be educated properly as to what this means, how it works and the impacts and risks before they can make an informed choice. Debates of this nature suffer a large stumbling block at this point before they even get started.

I know... and I've sat down with my Mother and talked with her about it. We both opted out.

Want to support Firefox? Great, you'll have no problem with personalised, sponsored search suggestions then

msknight Silver badge

Re: It's as if they're designing it to lose market share

I don't mind paying for something I'm using. Or pay a subscription for a premium feature which is actually useful... as opposed to companies turn to advertising and that sort of garbage which actually turns me off the product and ends up with me fighting the crap they're pushing in my face.

Unloading pages, though... yes... depending on how it's done it can be a nightmare for the user.

I do wonder what platform Firefox are on. With all that's happened in this sphere already, I thought they'd have had more sense than to go this way.

EU readies 'antitrust charges' against Apple Pay for locking rivals out of iPhone NFC chip

msknight Silver badge

Pay now, win later

Apple can keep paying whatever fine they say, as long as it keeps doing what it's doing. Then it will likely win in the long run as competition continues to be locked out of its ecosystem and other battles are fought and won around it. Unless the EU force Apple to change the way they work then... er... nothing will change.

These transaction systems are already costing us because retailers have to put the prices higher to cover the cost of doing business. So ultimately I'm paying for all these shenanigans even though I don't use Apple Pay or any of its mobile-phone-based competitors. It's bad enough that I have to use credit/debit cards for which there is a charge to the retailer to keep the infrastructure running. That's a transaction charge which I could otherwise be saving.

Competition watchdog? We've heard of it. But emergency comms firm still on track to Airwave hello to £1.2bn

msknight Silver badge

Re: The right tool for the job

"the data is presumably more useful in vehicles than on every handset."

Very true, but the vehicle is also tied in to the system. The vehicle is part of the handset grouping so when control ring the group, the vehicle rings as well as the handsets. The vehicle has a better tranceiver while the handsets ring if the staff aren't in the vehicle. If the handsets are in a dead area, the, "message," catches up or gets left on the vehicle unit. So voice and data not being lockstepped is something that I don't see as being an issue.

And to a degree, we don't yet really know what opportunities the data on the handsets will really open up. We're only judging on what's known at the moment. Handsets being able to handle portable modules like fingerprint scanners is interesting for bobbies on the beat.

REvil customers complain ransomware gang uses backdoors to filch ransoms

msknight Silver badge

Re: its always a dog-walker

That's simply down to the cat walkers failing to recognise the need for a suit of armour when carrying out that task, and their lack of dedication to adopt the required safety equipment earns them no sympathy from me.

SEC takes legal action after crowdfunded marijuana investment scheme appears to go up in smoke

msknight Silver badge

I've heard of the war on drugs...

...but this takes it to a whole new level.

Italian stuntman flies aeroplane through two motorway tunnels

msknight Silver badge

Bit of a shame that he took off from inside a tunnel rather than approaching it from the air, though. Now THAT would have been impressive.

Microsoft, flush with cash, raises cloud office suite prices for businesses

msknight Silver badge

Loads of bells and whistles

... that nobody I know asked for, and they don't mention the features I actually used, that they removed (only a few of these to be fair) and features they changed and didn't give a revert button... (the one I'm most angry about is forcing One Note tabs down the side in all versions)

Yeah, Microsoft... go to hell. In a handbasket. On a railway. At speed.

China warns game devs not to mess with history

msknight Silver badge

Exactly. And the biggest problem is that you're not going to know which version of history you're not messing with, until the powers that be tell you their already messed up version. What a... er... mess.

Upcoming Android privacy changes include ability to blank advertising ID, and 'safety section' in Play store

msknight Silver badge

Re: Zero Tracking

You could always try Sailfish.....

Troll jailed for 5 years after swatting of Twitter handle owner ends in death

msknight Silver badge

Re: You have gotta be SWATting me.

It is correct to say that "some" of the effects of hormone blocking are not "totally" irreversible, but it depends on timing and age. It is also a balance. There are short men, just as there are tall women. Those kinds of things are not a complete deal breaker for someone's life.

Firstly, some of the numbers put out by the press are misleading. For example, the numbers of people transitioning. The legal method to change birth certificate had been in existence for more than a decade when I changed mine, and my certificate number was mid two hundreds. So you're looking at a shave over 20 people changing their birth certificate every year. We're not dealing with a massive rush here.

It is difficult to get treatment out of the Tavistock for a reason. Surgery is definitely irreversible.

The problem is one of the person melding into society and the harder this is, the more difficult it is to get employment...

For F->M people, hormones later in life will break the voice and trigger dormant hair follicles so they can grow a beard, etc.

For M->F no amount of hormones can un-break the voice, un-square the jaw and bone structure.... so it's a balance. Get it right while young and the person will blend into society and have a worthwhile life. Get it wrong, and they'll suffer a life of exclusion and ridicule.

Which is why a ban on hormone blockers for all, spells disaster for some for whom it is the right way to go.

msknight Silver badge

Re: You have gotta be SWATting me.

Correct. The Tavistock is appealing, so this has got a way to run yet.

If society wasn't fixated on the pigeon hole thing and people didn't get their knickers in a twist when they saw a boy playing with Barbie or a girl playing with Action Man, then perhaps the kids could just grow up as kids and things wouldn't get so out of whack.

I believe that companies wanting to make a profit are behind some of the pressure that people feel today. This is a worthwhile 7 minute watch in my personal opinion - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3JDmb_f3E2c

The other problem is that they're using a single case to dictate the treatment available to everybody. And that is just screwy. It's manipulation by people who don't know what they're talking about, trying to get the world to work the way they want it to work, but at least the Tavistock is fighting back.

TLDR: The adults are the problem. Not the kids.

South Korea tables law to remove app stores' in-app purchase monopolies

msknight Silver badge

I don't get how this works

They set a law that gives developers the freedom to use other payment methods, but the suppliers put a term in that says developers either waive their right to do so, and use their payment methods exclusively... or go home.

Unless they explicitly ban the suppliers from forcing such waivers on developers, indeed to the point of forcing developers to use other payment methods... (which is not necessarily a good thing) ... I can't see how this is going to change things.

You'll never Guess whose data has been nicked as US fashion firm confirms systems breach

msknight Silver badge

As a fashion company...

...I guess this means that they lost their shirt :-)

On a slightly more serious note, if companies keep giving annual experian membership whenever they get hacked, I'll be paid up for life at this rate.

NASA signs $1bn deal with Northrop Grumman to build studio apartment in lunar orbit with room for 3 vehicles

msknight Silver badge

The HALO module, eh?

Took them long enough. When was that game released?

SteelSeries Apex Pro plays both sides of the mechanical keyboard fence – and wins

msknight Silver badge

If it works with KVM's and Linux...

...then I'm interested. So few keyboards do, even in the high price bracket.

Who do I ask?

Audacity fork maintainer quits after alleged harassment by 4chan losers who took issue with 'Tenacity' name

msknight Silver badge

Re: Seriously?

Sadly, judging by the way the world is going now, we are already living in a global mental institution and the safest place to be, is in a room with padded walls.

Sing a song of Office, a pocketful of why: ARM64 version running in a Pi

msknight Silver badge

Re: "wugahumphtama" as a correctly spelled word

I think it was part of a joke by Jasper Carrot about the speed he filled in the times crossword... he could do it in seconds flat, but those are the kinds of words he ended up with.

msknight Silver badge

"popular" office suite?

From where I'm sitting, the only reason it's popular is because the competition has been all but squashed for the every day Joe. There is no viable alternative on their radar and when I talk about Libre Office, I'm met with a blank stare. As far as Google office goes, it still validates, "wugahumphtama" as a correctly spelled word, despite showing this to a Google engineer in 2013 who promptly said, "Oh, it shouldn't be doing that..." and even checking on the document just now, it's still accepting it.

John McAfee dead: Antivirus tycoon killed himself in prison after court OK'd extradition, says lawyer

msknight Silver badge

Now the dig begins...

Always a controversial figure. I couldn't see him going to a US jail cell to rot. Something like this was always going to be on the cards, although I'd have thought that firearms and alcohol would have featured more prominently. Either way, his death is likely just the start. The US authorities are going to follow everything through and take apart all his friends and acquaintances in order to find the missing money.

At least he's at peace... although I'd likely bet that various other people are probably starting to get very worried....

Mensa data spillage was due to 'unauthorised internal download'

msknight Silver badge

Re: A bit bonkers @So negative

Only in Farage's case it would be, "I would never join a club that would have me as a leader."

msknight Silver badge

Re: Are we shooting the wrong party?

Nah, some people are shooting Mensa and those associated with it, because of their ignorance, maybe a bit of jealousy... bit of this... bit of that... whatever their reasons. The fact that someone commented that they shit-can any CV with Mensa on it just confirms that I'm glad I'll never have the misfortune to work for them. In fact, the majority of accounts and even the ratio of thumbs up instead of down, is reassuring to read.

The web site stood up to attack, the password storage is definitely embarrassing for the designers/maintainers though. The attack that, "worked," was the unauthorised insider download. To a degree that's on Mensa for trusting the wrong person, but the same can be said for any organisation.

msknight Silver badge

Re: A bit bonkers @So negative

You could have made the joke a bit more obvious and attributed the quote to Julius Caesar :-) ... or to be more up-to-date ... Nigel Farage. :-D

msknight Silver badge

Re: Wow

That's possibly because those who aren't a giant pain in the ass likely wouldn't tell you in the first place, unless the subject came up ;-)

msknight Silver badge

Re: Just another exclusive society with a secret handshake

I honestly can't see why people would downvote you. You've just demonstrated that you don't know what Mensa is, how it works, what it stands for ... and that you judge people based on that ignorance... just like many other things in life. That's all.

msknight Silver badge

Re: Wow

I'm glad to hear your friend has found peace. As you say, IQ can be a curse as much as a gift.

msknight Silver badge

Re: It's Mensa

Good one! Have an upvote!

msknight Silver badge

Re: You have to look at the individual

It's a shame that you let your gigantic ego get in the way of potentially hiring someone. But that's life I guess. ;-)

msknight Silver badge

Re: Wow

You're free to have your opinion. I don't agree with it, but that's life.

msknight Silver badge

Re: A bit bonkers

Differs in many cases. In my case, I was going through a bad patch in life, with little self worth. Passing the test gave me a light at the end of the tunnel that I could achieve things.

As for beyond the test, the organisation has a number of Special Interest Groups that cover all sorts of subjects and there are also small meet ups that happen and those can be a great way of meeting people, especially when you've just moved to a new area and don't know people.

There are larger gatherings which are more, "organisation," orientated and I steered clear of those. That's where a chunk of the politics could be found.

msknight Silver badge

Re: Wow

Like many things, it should be taken as nothing more than an indicator of someone's abilities and focus, just like a degree in any discipline. You have to look at the individual.

msknight Silver badge

A bit bonkers

I had an e-mail from them in late February asking to reset my password. Being an ex-member, I didn't bother.

It made no reference to being hacked or anything. I've had no communication from them that my details have been exposed or at risk... nothing of that nature whatsoever.

This doesn't surprise me. While the majority of the people I've corresponded and dealt with have been good folks with a heart of gold, there has been the occasional individual who have egos that are so over inflated, it makes me wonder what their skin is made of, that it is able to put up with the internal pressures. So that someone would do this isn't a total surprise.

Everything Apple announced: Tor-ish Safari anonymization. Cloaked iCloud addresses. Cloud CI/CD. And more

msknight Silver badge


Is it just me, or do I smell Apple about to launch their version of Facebook, which will obviously promise anonymity to their users... the only question being whether it will allow people from outside the Apple ecosystem to join as well. They have had their own, "messenger" service for some while which bypasses SMS between Apple users. If they were to try something like this, however, I feel sure they'd end up in court on a worse wicket that they already are with the app store debacle.

Oracle intros Arm-powered cloud, includes on-prem option for big spenders

msknight Silver badge

Cloud at customer plan

Surely cheaper to have your own hardware and your own staff if it's going to be on your own site and is coming to that kind of money? What have I missed?

Just what is the poop capacity of an unladen sparrow? We ask because one got into the office and left quite a mess

msknight Silver badge

Re: Two answers to pigeons.

I would hazard a guess that Mr Speed would disagree with your conclusion of 3/4 gram of poop per year after being presented with the carnage in his shed :-) ... having written that, I'm not sure if there was a time scale mentioned in the leaving of the open window, nor a sparrow counter configured for the duration of the shed duress.

msknight Silver badge

I suggest the scientific approach.

You weigh the shed, then leave the window open and leave the ruffian to do another round of splatter bombing, and then weigh the shed again. At this point you can subtract one weight from the other and obtain your result.

UK's competition watchdog sniffs around AMD's proposed $35bn all-stock buy of Xilinx

msknight Silver badge

My response is in.

I previously responded to the other enquiry, so it was basically a matter of cutting and pasting, with a few alterations. For what it's worth.

As pandemic buying continues, Chromebook shipments soared 275% in Q1, says analyst

msknight Silver badge

Beats me why.

Unless things have changed, the life of a Chromebook was from the date of manufacture, not the date of purchase. I wouldn't touch one of these if that was still the case.

Update - they did extend the life of some models by the looks of it...


Fancy a piece of sordid tech history? Fleabayer is flogging the first production Spectrum Vega+ console for £1,500

msknight Silver badge

A cautionary tale.

Understatement of the year prize goes to... El Reg!!!

Cautionary tale my foot. It was a disaster. I think I was one of the lucky ones who got a refund right in the early days before it got messy.

Docking £500k commission from top SAS salesman was perfectly legal, rules judge

msknight Silver badge

It doesn't bode well for the customers

Any customer or potential customer will now likely be very wary of them after this. If this is how they treat their sales people, then how do they treat their customers? This very much sets the tone that any customer can expect from them if things go wonky.

New drinking game idea: Down a shot every time Huawei blames US sanctions for the current tech industry woes

msknight Silver badge

If I did this...

... my liver wouldn't last the hour.

To be honest, the company will be on the naughty step as long as Xi Jinping is in power. That, I believe, is the focus of Biden's concern.

UK's National Rail backs down from greyscale website tribute to Prince Phil after visually impaired users complain

msknight Silver badge

OK so....

The company finds itself in the unusual position of asking its customers to install ad and tracking blockers in order to get around its design and, by dint of that advice, will thus negate its own statistics collection in the process. Irony, thy name is National Rail.

Openreach out and hike prices on legacy fixed-line products: Broadband plumber pulls trigger after Ofcom gives the nod

msknight Silver badge

"Openreach has said it will raise the cost of installing and delivering certain “legacy” wholesale products, including FTTP and copper, in order to spread the cost of the ongoing full-fibre rollout." ... Am I missing something here? This reads like FTTP is a legacy product. At least this Thursday is a Friday by proxy this week. In the UK at least :-)

With Nominet’s board-culling vote just days away, we speak to one man who will publicly support the management

msknight Silver badge

Re: Sounds like a right devious little shit

I don't see much in terms of evasion.

It's working for what he wants it for. The problems that everyone else sees, don't matter to him. If all customers are paying the same for their registrations, then that isn't going to affect his customer base as they'll have to pay the same wherever they go.

It just seems to me that he just isn't enraged by the same moral issues and behaviour towards members, that other people are. So he's fine with corporate greed and silencing of members who don't agree with where the management are going. Like higher prices for registrations, etc.

Australian police suggests app to record consent to sexual activity

msknight Silver badge

Wanna have sex?

"Sure. Just give me half an hour to fill out this questionnaire as to what I do and don't consent to doing with you, first."

Also, this takes no account of coercion. "If you want to get ahead in your career..... swipe right..."

I mean... it's good that they're thinking about the issue, but technology is not always the answer.

China's top chip company speaks of massive silicon shortage felt around the globe

msknight Silver badge

Re: How very cute

Exactly what I was going to say. Although I'd be more specific to Xi and the government, rather than the people. Jinping has not so much blotted the Chinese copy book, more like thrown it in the ink well.

Microsoft customers locked out of Teams, Office, Xbox, Dynamics – and Azure Active Directory breakdown blamed

msknight Silver badge

Re: 365, 364, 363...

Skwaak... skwaak skwaak, skwwwwark. Skwark skwark skwAAArk.

Desperate Nominet chairman claims member vote to fire him would spark British government intervention

msknight Silver badge

He hasn't worked anything out. That's why the current situation exists.

As battle for future of .UK's Nominet draws closer, non-exec director hits a nerve with for-profit proposal

msknight Silver badge

From the looks of this...

Once all this is done and dusted, Thornton will likely find himself “tainted” and “may find getting partnerships and work with people difficult." not through anything other than his own behaviour which seems to be thoroughly unbecoming of someone in his position.



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