* Posts by Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

34 publicly visible posts • joined 25 Jun 2013

I can't believe you've done this: Cisco.com asks visitors to explain to IT why they have broken the website

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Sadly, this wording is still common

> Having the information in the logs doesn't mean it doesn't need to be pointed out to the webmaster.

It *doesn't* [mean that it isn't necessary for a member of the public to send an administrator an email], but it *should* do, seeing as it's the public website of a big company that ought to be able to give the impression that they know what they're doing with software on networked computers, with logging and alerting/reliability engineering and such.

Are you a gun owner? Let us in OR ELSE, say Blighty's top cops

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Legal Guns

Yeah right, the supersonic crack from the bullet fired from this high-powered rifle fitted with a suppressor didn't give the dog-walker reason to think that this was anything more than an air-rifle.

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Hmm

All the more reason for suspicion, I should think...

Heatmiser digital thermostat users: For pity's sake, DON'T SWITCH ON the WI-FI

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Disable port 80 forwarding...

Now that (lockouts above a certain number of failed logins) there is a *proper* Denial of Service vulnerability (unless it's per-external-address and there isn't also away around this - but judging by previous experience, I'd imagine not)

Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Don't worry;

It's not terrorism if you're only doing it to prove that you don't like it.

Only '3% of web servers in top corps' fully fixed after Heartbleed snafu

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Well, it depends on the issue and the patch, doesn't it?


It *is* the certificates that need to be revoked, but it's the corresponding private keys that present a problem if they've been stolen, because the certificates are already public.


Greenpeace rejoices after getting huge renewable powerplant cancelled

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

This only goes to show

That environmentalism doesn't ultimately care about what happens to the environment - that much has been made clear. It would be more accurate to view it as a modern manifestation of a death-cult, the like of which has been amongst the human race for tens of thousands of years, demanding human blood (metaphorical in this case, but no less deadly in its effect of preventing access for people in the developing world to modern technology) to be sacrificed on a regular basis to appease a higher power, preventing the destruction of the harvest/tribe/planet. It may yet kill us all.

How Bitcoin could become a super-sized Wayback Machine

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Nice idea

When you invent a functioning cryptocurrency that also folds proteins or searches for extra-terrestrial intelligence, then let us know. There's almost certainly a Nobel Prize waiting for you.

If, on the other hand, you just want other people to do the stuff that you want them to, rather than the stuff that's making them money and changing the future of commerce, then there's nothing to stop you from setting up a global SETI@coin/ProteinFolding@coin network, and buying the resulting coins from miners at a price that the market recognises as justifying the costs and risks of that enterprise. The question is: are you willing to put your money where your mouth is?

Tech that we want (but they never seem to give us)

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Everything that 1960's SciFi "promised" us (and more)

Oh, are we going to be playing that game, then?

In which case... Strong AI.

(Because nothing could ever go wrong with that: http://berglas.org/Articles/AIKillGrandchildren/AIKillGrandchildren.html)

Cloud computing is FAIL and here’s why

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

The schadenfreude has reached a new level of intensity with this

Adobe do have features (and patents) in their software that make them the market leaders in some areas, but it's awe-inspring what they have managed to get their customers to agree to over the last few years. It's not that they aren't bastards for doing this, it's just that the sheer arrogance of the Just Works crowd in assuming that they can safely swallow the marketing whole and cede ever more responsibility to the vendor wthout any real protection more than balances this out on the sympathy/pleasure-in-misfortune scale.

It's impressive enough that they have managed to incrementally push DRM that is more and more fail-deadly into products that businesses pay good money for, and which publishing houses grind to a halt without, but their balls in moving to a subscription-only service while also making their core offerings dependent on their own infrastructure (and customers' Internet connections) can only be marvelled at. The next step will be for Adobe to provide products to their customers though leased dumb terminals (perhaps iPads), also including wireless internet connectivity (so that customers can outsource this to them as well), with the only way of extracting files being through this, via Adobe's servers. The logical conclusion of this will be for businesses to avoid having to deal with and hardware, software or Creative Professionals at all and to pay Adobe for (AI-generated) Creative Services directly.

Asteroids as powerful as NUCLEAR BOMBS strike Earth TWICE YEARLY

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: A shooting gallery

It's ironic that you should try to crowbar-in your Anthropogenic Global Warming sentiments here, because de-industrialising or depopulating the human race (which is what every single "mitigation" proposal that I have seen ultimately amounts to) is only going to render us yet more helpless in identifying and averting potential asteroid extinction-level events.

It may be ILLEGAL to run Heartbleed health checks – IT lawyer

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Authorised

But it would appear that they have been doing this quite effectively - for the last couple of years, in fact. Although they must have forgotten to have put out the press-release about it.

US mobile firms cave on kill switch, agree to install anti-theft code

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: 24 hours?

Either way, this paves the way for some inconvenient and eye-wateringly expensive Denial of Service attacks.

Fancy joining Reg hack on quid-a-day challenge?

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

I don't get what all of the fuss is about £1 per day

I live below the domestic poverty line according to the standards used by all of the major charities, but I don't feel impoverished. If you are prepared to forgo meat, and eat mainly bread, butter, milk, bananas, rice and brussel sprouts, tomato purée and chickpeas, which are all fairly inexpensive, it's perfectly possible. A large proportion of the population, especially in the UK and the USA, could do with losing weight, but it seems to be in the interest of these charities to create the impression that hunger (which is itself a highly subjective thing) isn't a normal part of the human experience (even right before breakfast, lunch or dinner), and that we should banish it from our society to right a terrible injustice. If eating three or four conventional "square" meals (delivered in a convenient form) is important to people (like me), they should use this as a motivation to earn (more) money.

Show more Canadian made porn, insists Canadian government

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

"I dream of a future...

Where my children and, my children's children, will grow up in a society with adult media channels overrunning with local, sustainable, patriotic home-grown good old-fashioned Canadian pornography."

Facebook adds 50+ gender options: Stalking your 'Friends' just got more LGBT-friendly

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: WTF!

Oh but gender is /so/ much more complex and nuanced than the relation between a person* and their reproductive organs - it's a social construct, doncha know. Or that is what those involved in the academic pusuit of Gender Studies would have us believe.

*Please forgive what could be seen as personist language; I wasn't trying to exclude those who self-identify as not being people, or as not having identities, or not existing.

Microsoft to build 'transparency centres' for source code checks

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Great, so that means they're going to issue cryptographically signed releases as well, right?

Ah, hang on, no, they aren't. So for a limited number of government customers, Microsoft are talking about allowing them to view selected parts of their source code, and they are then expecting them to take it on faith that it is this same clean code that is compiled, packaged and released. Right...

Reg snaps moment when Facebook turned air Blu: 1PB box for unloved pics

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Deleted profiles?

I suspect they would do something like encrypt every fragment of data with a different key, then delete the relevant key if they were forced to.

A BBC-by-subscription 'would be richer', MPs told

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

"...maximise revenue rather than maintain quality. Enders..."

What an unfortunate juxtaposition.

To me it seems the vast majority of BBC programming aimed at adults has for some time been designed to maximise ratings (and therefore justify revenue) rather than educate, inform or provide access to culture which would otherwise be beyond people's reach (like world-class Opera, in my case). When the BBC does try to educate, it ends up providing entertainment, and when they attempt to provide inform people, it tends to shallow and carry a predictable bias in one of several areas. If I felt that Live TV was something that I needed in my life, and that various forms of IPTV weren't superior in almost every way, then I might, if I had the choice, subscribe to one or two of the BBC's channels, but I find that the vast majority of their output is about as good an investment of my time as watching Eastenders is.

Joke no more: Comedy virty currency Dogecoin gets real in big Xmas heist

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Hmm... (A.C. 11:38)

Or about 1 BTC, as it happens.

Neither Snowden nor the NSA puts CIOs off the cloud, it's just FUD

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Journalists in this sector should be mindful

of the growing number of people running browser extensions such as Cloud to Butt Plus:


UK.gov's web filtering mission creep: Now it plans to block 'extremist' websites

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

I'll wager that it will be a case of

a) Yes please, I would love you to filter my internets.

b) No thank you, I have a reason to want to access harmful material (and understand that this will be interpreted as a risk factor for me becoming a Sex Offender, and that information of my opt-out will be made publicly available in the community for the purposes of crime prevention, community cohesion, and Child Safety).

'Best known female architect' angrily defends gigantic vagina

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

This *obviously* doesn't look like a vagina.

But it most certainly does look like a vulva.

No bail for 'Silk Road boss' as SIX MURDER-FOR-HIRE CHARGES filed

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Nothing could thrill me more

Than to see a lawyer publicly state that their client is "not the person known as the Dread Pirate Roberts". The whole idea of taking this plot element from The Princess Bride is inspired. I expect there will be another... and another... and that the Captain's legend will grow at every stage.

You've been arrested for computer crime: Here's what happens next

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

If not now, doubtless in a few changes in the law's time...

PLEASE let us build Fruit Loop Central, Apple begs Cupertino City

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Let's see who's smiling

When that thing takes off on course for a fruit-themed homeworld, leaving 175 acres of prime landscaped parkland.

Valve aiming to take the joy(sticks) out of gaming with Steam Controller

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Bad. Very bad.

Hopefully Valves's Levitating Mouse will be ready for Big Picture v2.0

New ransomware strain forces hapless users into becoming Bitcoin miners

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole


But consider the fact that Bitcoin difficulty is increasing exponentially, and that a week's mining now might be worth a year's in a year's time: http://bitcoindifficulty.com/

Cisco email accidentally sent to 1000s of employees causes message list MAYHEM

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Brings back memories

Come on, Tim - the sysadmin should probably have prevented it an/or mitigated the effects, but this doesn't remove the contractor's responsibility, or the responsibility of anyone that misuses a company network, whether well-meaningly or maliciously.

David Attenborough warns that humans have stopped evolving

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Oh but [d]evolution is continuing...

It's just that the incentives now mean that human beings are being selected for different things, such as lack of education.

Think your smutty Snapchats can't be saved by dorks? Think again

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Those selfies want to be free

When people approach mobile computing as though it's Consumer Electronics (which it never really is, in the right hands), it's no wonder that they're naive to the claims of Snapchat and the like. Eventually, they will learn that data is only likely to respect their wishes with regards to privacy in a very limited, legally-defined set of circumstances.

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

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: 20 years in the slammer

Drug use *is* a problem that won't just be solved by locking people up, but people don't deal drugs because they are "swept up amidst the symptoms of rampant drug abuse" - they do it because there's a lot of relatively easy money in it (due to prohibition). If drugs were legalised, the money in "drug dealing" and therefore drug-dealing itself would vanish overnight.

What separates two people of the same intelligence, life experience and qualifications, one of whom works legally, and the other that is a drug dealer, is that the drug dealer has chosen to trade their scruples for a lot more money. Again, if drugs were legalised, the drug dealer would simply switch to a different illegal activity that commanded a premium above legal occupations.

Rise of the Machines: How computers took over the stock market

Gerardo McFitzpatrick-O'Toole

Re: Fascinating article

Don't fail to realise that the reason there is so much money and brainpower involved in financial markets is that they serve to increase the productivity of practically every human endeavour by helping supply meet demand. If a year's work of a nuclear physicist results in a 1% increase in the world's cereal harvest in order to meet an anticipated future need, then that is time well-spent.

Algorithms and systems only make money when they are correct, and implemented efficiently compared to the competition. High-Frequency Trading is just the next logical step, with the potential to pick up information and transfer it to the market much faster, and to make or lose money at a correspondingly increased rate. Remember, traders only make money if someone else, somewhere, is also having their life made better in some way.