* Posts by jimbo60

129 publicly visible posts • joined 23 Oct 2013


Insider steals 79,000 email addresses at work to promote own business


What database?

A garden database? Seriously, they need to track gardens?

Maersk prepares to lay off the Maidenhead staffers who rescued it from NotPetya super-pwnage


Ah, yes. Keep very clear boundaries between work cell phone and personal cell phone. And work email accounts and personal email accounts. After getting the shaft after 33 years, I did not have those clearly separated; what a pain that was to unwind.

Judge Vulcan-nerve pinches JEDI deal after Amazon forks out $42m to pause Microsoft's military machinations


Re: It was the end of history....

Hoist a cold one to El Reg for playing the long game with their humor. Most tech rags would not remember what they published last week.

Controversies aren't Boeing away for aircraft maker amid claims of faulty oxygen systems and wobbling wings


That is an Airbus A350 issue: need to reboot flight control systems every 149 hours or they fail.

The Boeing issue was with Dreamliner generators that needed to be restarted every 248 days. If not, the generators will fail, causing the plane switch to battery and then bring backup wind turbine generators (!) online.

The Boeing issue dates to 2015. The Airbus issue still existed this year, though apparently there is a software fix available, it just has to get rolled out.

I think the Airbus issue sounds a bit more concerning.

Heads up from Internet of S*!# land: Best Buy's Insignia 'smart' home gear will become very dumb this Wednesday


Re: X10 kit

I had some of that. Then my neighbor did too, along with some kind of security system that would send All Lights On to half of the available channels for any kind of event. That got very annoying, along with the unpredictable US split phase problems.

I eventually migrated to Insteon to take advantage of its support for X10 while I migrated. It has its own problems (hopelessly incompetent software, early product reliability issues where the in-wall switches did not last as long as the light bulbs they controlled), and now the remote controller is cloud-based like everyone else.

Boffins hand in their homework on Voyager 2's first readings from beyond Solar System


Re: Pointing to where Earth will be

Of all the amazing things about the Voyagers, the fact that it can send a modest radio signal from that far away and we can receive it, decode it, and error correct it into something useful may be the most amazing of all.

Oregon can't stop people from calling themselves engineers, judge rules in Traffic-Light-Math-Gate


Re: Great for this Engineer

"nor membership of a professional body."

Anyone with a functioning credit card can join IEEE, ACM, etc., and subscribe to any number of their publications. That does not mean said publications are resulting in any actual professional development.

New lows at Bose as firmware update woes infuriate soundbar bros


reboot the speaker?

"...staff have also suggested rebooting the speaker..."

Never thought I'd see those words together. And I'm a technical type...

Microsoft debuts Bosque – a new programming language with no loops, inspired by TypeScript


Re: Ah, the loop

"Meanwhile, in the real world, I have to program a daily check on a 1,700,000-record database. How you gonna do that, Mr NoLoop ?"

A function with a check function and an iterator. The iterator does the loop and the check for you under the covers. Presto, no loop in your code, it is hidden in the language construct!


Re: Ah, the loop

A Z-80 could only address 64K! Nothing magical about that limit for LDIR / LDDR.


Re: Ambivalence of complexity

When "thinking" is not a form of "work", then you are obviously not paid for "thinking". Then, by that standard, the physical activity of typing on your keyboard, is all the "work" that needs to be done and paid for as a programmer. Thanks for clarifying that.

IBM, circa 1980s, evaluated programmer productivity in their mainframe groups using lines of code per unit time. Clearly they understood this concept.

That also helps explain a lot of code bloat.

While this CEO may be stiff, his customers are rather stuffed: Quadriga wallets finally cracked open – nothing inside


It is mentioned, December 3.

US legal eagle: Well done, you bought privacy compliance tools. Doesn't mean you comply with anything


Another ivory tower 'expert'

The basic problem is that most of these laws are written in ways that are vague and ambiguous. Determining that you are compliant is an opinion, not a fact, until lawsuits going through courts add clarification and boundaries. The compliance opinions may be from ivory tower lawyers, or experienced subject experts, or baked into some services tools, but it is still just an opinion.

Companies don't want to be hit with ruinous fines, and they do not have any more expertise than anyone else, so they want to do something, anything, to show diligence in trying to comply. Some will hire 'expert consultants', some will buy services and tools and training. And the sudden demand against a lack of supply of expertise will draw some shady operators.

But no matter who gets hired, none of it is a sure thing because of how most laws are written.

Bun fight breaks out after devs, techie jump ship: Bakery biz Panera sues its former IT crowd


Re: i won't try the mcd's automated thingies

Last time I tried to talk to a real person at Mickey D's, I ordered something by name and she had to ask "What number is that?". And probably expects a $15/hr minimum wage for such skill.

HPE wants British ex-CFO to testify in UK Autonomy lawsuit before Uncle Sam sentences him


Re: Just Hold The Popcorn Order

Yet another lovely legacy of the Léo Apotheker era.


Re: Ponzi Scheme

Fiat currencies should be treated as if they are common stock, but for a country. Price depends on perceived value and future value of the country--the key word there being 'perceived', not anything based on real financial stability.

US kids apparently talking like Peppa Pig... How about US lawmakers watching Doctor Who?


Re: Doctor Who

"The only problem I have with feral 'elites' watching Doctor Who is they might think it is a documentary. Yes they are that stupid and vapid."

We already have elites who think islands may capsize and who come up with stuff like the Green New Deal. It would hardly be a step lower to think Doctor Who is a documentary.

Reliable system was so reliable, no one noticed its licence had expired... until it was too late


Re: Bah!

Is that a room or a warehouse? Some of those systems lived in large glass houses at one time.

After Amazon's Bezos exposes Pecker, National Enquirer pushes back, promises to probe itself


How could you not snark about this one

Seriously, when a guy named Pecker is threatening to publish selfie pics of a tech titan's pecker, how can you not write snarky headlines? It's as fun as John Wayne Bobbitt.

Sadly, said tech giant falls off his pedestal and demonstrates he is just as dumb as any other average Dick.

Fun fact: GPS uses 10 bits to store the week. That means it runs out... oh heck – April 6, 2019


Re: You think that's a problem? I'll show you a problem

Embedded? Try anything with Unix / C Std Library ctime.

Website programming? Pffft, so 2011. Python's main squeeze is now data science, apparently


Re: Re Good job Python isn't a syntax Nazi.

Hee hee. I once used a modified sed (modified to add proper regular expressions, back in the day when it definitely did not have that) script to convert Bliss to C. Those were the good old days :).


Re: I have so many years invested in C and C++

Same as I, 30+ years of C/C++. But if you are fluent in using OO-style C++, it's about half a day of learning to be reasonably proficient at OO-style Python, which is how it should be used. And SO much easier to use for string and symbolic manipulation because the language takes care of all the memory allocation and garbage collection.


Re: “the surging popularity of Flask, a bare-bones web framework ”

Or, if you just want a lightweight RESTful API and not a GUI, look at Falcon Web Framework, falconframework.org. A full API can be done in one small file; no templates, no models, etc..

Things that make you go .hm... Has a piece of the internet just sunk into the ocean? It appears so


I vote for "haven't got a feckin' clue about proper UIs". Even very large public companies that practically wrote the book on good UI design no longer have a feckin' clue.

Amid polar vortex... Honeywell gets frosty reception after remote smart thermostat tech freezes up for a week


Re: IOT=Crap

Do TVs still have control buttons on them? I don't think mine does...

At some point, you have to depend on the remote. I hope the IOT thingies don't reach that point for cloud access where there is no other way to use the things.

Staff sacked after security sees 'suspect surfer' script of shame


unfortunate name similarities

My kids' K-12 charter school system with a classical education focus uses a .org web site that has 'titans' (of Greek mythology) in the name, as that is the school system's mascot. Unfortunately, for quite some time the same web url but with .com instead of .org was a site celebrating large breasted women.

The offending .com name appears to no longer be in use, but I wonder how many young kids (and parents) accidentally typed in the wrong name. I know I did several times, including at work, leaving me scratching my head wondering why the company's firewalls were blocking a school web site.

A year after Logitech screwed over Harmony users, it, um, screws over Harmony users: Device API killed off


Re: They should stick to mice and keyboards

Nope. I bailed on them years ago when a 6 month old expensive USB webcam became a micro door stop because they never issued drivers for the next version of Windows that came out shortly after I bought it. That sort of non-support turned me into a non-customer.

The Microsoft web cam I bought after that episode keeps going and going, even after many years of windows upgrades.


Re: A bridge too many

> So what exactly makes S0NY a better company than say Logitech?

You mean the Sony that used to make great products like Trinitron screens, great prosumer camcorders and the like? But more recently seemed to specialize in things like music CDs with embedded rootkits, free game download with embedded rootkits, and that ghastly Securom game copy protection scheme that mostly seemed to excel at making my kids' favorite games stop working after any kind of hardware upgrade? That Sony?

I think it is likely that Sony and Logitech are neighbors in the same sewer.

Dell upping its margins again: Precision 5530 laptop will sting you for $13m. Yep, six zeroes


Re: Bah!

I thought Stackoverflow *was* the manual.

Apple replaces boot-loop watchOS edition with unconnected complications edition


Re: 176 Mb

Facebook Messenger on any platform is a bloated app. It's over 200MB on Android not including data, so Apple users get off easy. Seriously, though, I've written complex enterprise apps complete with diagnostic logging, phone home, etc., and the images are smaller than that even before symbols are stripped. I cannot begin to imagine how Messenger ends up being so large.

Zip it! 3 more reasons to be glad you didn't jump on Windows 10 1809


Nothing new under the sun

Back when Vista was being developed, Microsoft had external beta testers that were a group selected by Microsoft, not just anyone who self-selected to be an "Insider". It was a very active, very productive, very vocal group, with discussion forums, ways to track your bug reports, and all that good stuff. I forget what they called it, it was long before "Insiders" or preview rings.

You remember Vista, right? Where V1 was a wreck of issues? Every single one of the problems with Vista v1 was found and reported, repeatedly reopened, and screamed about in the forums multiple times by many testers. Every time they were closed by the internal triage team as "not reproducible", even though they were trivially reproducible.

The MS beta tester handlers were telling the testers "we won't ship until it is ready" and we were screaming that it was not ready. I happened to work for a major PC maker at the time, and the MS reps to the PC makers were saying "it's ready, shipping on this date" at the same time the testers were screaming about the problems. Even with that solid reporting and tracking arrangement, they utterly failed.

Marketing driven then, marketing driven now, with the same inevitable results.

Left hand, meet the right hand.


Re: Regressions

Six month release cycles can work just fine if the releases are at the end of a pipeline that is longer than six months, and the last substantial portion of that pipeline is testing AND correction of problems found.

That does, however, require product and program managers who can actually comprehend multiple streams in development+test at the same time.

On the first day of Christmas my true love gave me tea... pigs-in-blankets-flavoured tea


Good sprouts

Forget boiling. Baking / blackened is great. Here is one approach:

Cubed butternut squash, sliced red onion, sprouts cut in half (preferably smaller ones). Oil a baking pan, spread the above on the pan, season with salt and generous amounts of garlic powder, and bake in the oven at baking temp (350F in the US). Stir and turn occasionally. Done in about 45 minutes, or whenever the sprouts are cooked through, preferably with some nice blackened crispy edges. Bonus points if you can find some specialty butternut squash oil to sprinkle on everything.

Three of us consumed an entire pan of that along with some pan seared salmon the other day. Yum.


Re: Christmas is essentially Page 71 of the Brand New Monty Python Bok

> One of the few cultural advantages the Yanks have over the Brits is Thanksgiving - because it prevents Christmas from starting too early.

Sorry, no. Certain 'warehouse' stores (Costco, etc.) put out big stacks of Christmas stuff weeks ago. The giant stacks of Thanksgiving pumpkin pies won't be there for another few weeks. Ironically, most of their Christmas stock will be gone by the time December begins, because the early shoppers know it will be gone.

At least the music has not started.

On the seventh anniversary of Steve Jobs' death, we give you 7 times he served humanity and acted as an example to others


Re: "oh boy"

Jobs was, quite simply, one of the best snake oil salesmen in ages.

Former Apple engineer fights iPhone giant for patent credit and denied cash, says Steve Jobs loved his 'killer ideas'


Re: How should patents work?

In US patents, corporations are never inventors, only individuals are inventors. Employee inventors generally sign over rights to their employer, but they remain the named inventors.

Deliberately leaving off an inventor can be grounds for invalidating a patent. Smart companies try to be careful and rigorous about making sure all involved inventors are named.

The fact that one of the ideas was disclosed on his hiring paperwork as prior inventive work is a pretty strong document legal position.

Microsoft accidentally let encrypted Windows 10 out into the world


dang...now I have to try it

Half Life 2 loading screens? Whoa, that jogged some memories. I enjoyed that so much I may have to try the blurry bits.

Apple in XS new sensation: Latest iPhone carries XS-sive price tag


another 'first'

"This is the first ECG product offered over the counter to consumers,"

Cue all the news article about AliveCor selling a personal ECG product for years, for $99.

The reality distortion field is alive and well.

Fast food, slow user – techie tears hair out over crashed drive-thru till


Re: Ahhh, memories...

Recalling the "Internet Helpdesk" skit by Three Dead Trolls in a Baggie. Worth a watch if you haven't seen it.

Lyon for speed, San Francisco for money, Amsterdam for fun: the best cities to be a techie


San Fran for money?

Are you talking about income or cost of living?

Fire chief says Verizon throttled department's data in the middle of massive Cali wildfires


Re: Um...so what does this have to do with net neutrality?

Exactly what I was thinking. First, net neutrality has nothing to do with throttling your entire connection because you exceeded contract terms. It is about giving priority to some traffic (like the ISPs own or paying third parties) over other traffic (all the other schmucks), or even lowering priority for some traffic (e.g. political views your ISP disagrees with, video sites hogging bandwidth) below baseline priority.

This is a situation where the FPD should want to be prioritized above all other traffic. That is the opposite of neutral. And they certainly should be prioritized over all the people doing things like livestreaming the fire from their phones. This seems like the clueless jumping on the neutrality bandwagon for all the wrong reasons.

London's Gatwick Airport flies back to the future as screens fail


> Pulling a multi-pair cable is a sensible precaution

Sorry, multi-pair cables don't offer any protection against diggers slicing the entire thing. You need to have different physical routes to avoid that problem.

Who was it that hacked Apple? Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie, boy boy boy!


Re: embezzlement.xls

kids_college_fund.xlsx. You could put millions in there and nobody would blink.

Dudes. Blockchain. In a phone. It's gonna smash the 'commoditization of humanity' or something


So if I drop the thing and it shatters...

...then I've lost all my bitcoin and my ID?

Git365. Git for Teams. Quatermass and the Git Pit. GitHub simply won't do now Microsoft has it



...has the appropriate comedic aspect for this entire farce.

Da rude sand storm seizes the Opportunity, threatens to KO rover


Re: A place in history

My first personal computer was a Heathkit H89 with a 2MHz Z80 CPU and about 48K of RAM. And I did plenty of useful work on it, in addition to learning a lot.

Microsoft commits: We're buying GitHub for $7.5 beeeeeeellion


Gotta love twitter humor. Post below is accompanied by a screen shot showing gitlab is being hosted by Microsoft Azure. Numerous related posts show the same. :)


Jun 5

For all the people who left #github and migrated to #gitlab on a rush because you don't like Microsoft, welcome to Microsoft #Azure


Stop assuming such evil intent!

Wow, everyone is assuming such evil intent on Microsoft's part! That's not the Microsoft way.

The Microsoft way is:

- Decide to change the web interfaces every few months, especially rearranging all the menus every time.

- Decide that git and http aren't the best interfaces. Come out with new mandatory interfaces and APIs and associated client tools.

- Add significant new capabilities. And introduce lots of bugs. Don't fix the bugs.

- A year later change the APIs again.

- Bind all the interfaces to Microsoft single-login services. But don't provide fully functional account management.

- Change the APIs again.

- Wonder where everyone went.

- Decide the level of interest no longer warrants focus on that business. Cancel it.

No evil intent necessary.

New Monty Python movie to turn old jokes into new royalties


Re: My two favourites

My favorite theater moment was the couple in the row in front of us that overheated during the Castle Anthrax scene.

Yes, people see straight through male displays of bling (they're only after a fling)


Re: Really?

Where are you getting a new F150 for $35000? A new F150 (or Expedition, which is an SUV on the F150 frame and drive train) with the new ecoboost engine and a package with decent bling costs nearly as much as my first house!

Used all the way for these family movers. Yes, I've had to do some repairs myself (some major), but who can afford those new?