* Posts by Criggie

118 posts • joined 21 Mar 2014

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That awful moment when what you thought was a number 1 turned out to be a number 2

Criggie

Re: Problem with learning parrot fashion

The model T was more of a tractor than a car - sure the wheel turns left and right the same, but there's a 2 speed gearbox controlled by pedals, and the brake is the rightmost pedal.. You also have to manually control the spark retard, and crank it to start. The model T had a 20 horsepower engine, and a fuel tank under the driver's seat.

But yes - they had an ignition key that looks like this in the earlier 1914-1919 era - sometimes called a coil switch.

https://images2.minutemediacdn.com/image/upload/c_fill,g_auto,h_1248,w_2220/f_auto,q_auto,w_1100/v1555340366/shape/mentalfloss/image_23.jpg (from https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/77352/show-tell-ford-model-t-ignition-key )

Later ones had a more conventional looking brass key.

Criggie

Re: Technical management tips

Also known as PSBE - problem solving by explanation. There's almost always a "what about LIGHTBULB" moment somewhere in the sequence.

Criggie

Re: 125 million Indians speak English

....do the needful...

Captain Caveman rides to the rescue, solves a prickly PowerPoint problem with a magical solution

Criggie
FAIL

Re: the other clippy

True geeks keep a paperclip in their wallet at all times. Its rarely needed, but when it is you're golden.

(checks) damnit must have used mine! Its gone!

Flat Earther and wannabe astronaut killed in homemade rocket

Criggie

Re: I doubt he was bright enough to build a rocket

Lie detectors could only indicate on known lies... it will never show factual errors if the test subject truely believes them to be true.

Shipping is so insecure we could have driven off in an oil rig, says Pen Test Partners

Criggie

Re: And yet...

yep - its really high risk property speculation. But "beachfront" is always desirable so worth taking the risk.

Who needs the A-Team or MacGyver when there's a techie with an SCSI cable?

Criggie

Re: SCSI

I managed to get two physical hosts on the same scsi bus. It was a P133 running linux and a mac LCII. Both could see the Mac's internal drive and a Syquest EZ135 external drive and a second external Microbpolis 4GB drive.

But the Mac couldn't see the other controller on ID6, and the PC couldn't see the mac's controller on ID7.

https://criggie.org.nz/scsi/

You want a Y2K crash? FINE! Here's a poorly computer

Criggie

Re: Y2K proved relatively lucrative

I still use a palm TX to this day. Downside, its not quite a smartphone, but on the other hand its not a smartphone.

Will Asimov fix my doorbell? There should be a law about this

Criggie

Re: You are confusing EU with Europe

...because there was a lot of open space in city centers, just needed rubble cleared away ?

Windows 7 back in black as holdouts report wallpaper-stripping shenanigans

Criggie

Dunno which link I trust less - random mystery link or facebook link....

BOFH: When was the last time someone said these exact words to you: You are the sunshine of my life?

Criggie

I often add in any comments that "NPS is a crap scoring system" which is true.

Anything between 0 and 6 out of 10 is a failure or a "detratctor". 7 and 8 are scored as neutral, and only 9 or 10 is a positive / "promoter"

Help! I'm trapped on Schrodinger's runaway train! Or am I..?

Criggie

Re: The accessible room

As a tall person, I'd pay good money for an oversized room. I mean where EVERYTHING is oversized.

So the doors are 3 metres tall, with a handle at face height, and you need a step to get up onto the bed which is truely enormous.

So often in life, things are smaller than you remember them. Sales idea anyone? Alternative Airbnb perhaps ?

Is it a make-up mirror? Is it a tiny frisbee? No, it's the bonkers Cyrcle Phone, with its TWO headphone jacks

Criggie

Re: On the right track...

Vaguely reminds me of a small discus, or a skimming stone.

Hey kids! Ditch that LCD and get ready for the retro CRT world of Windows Terminal

Criggie

Re: You had one job.

I still have finger-macros embedded deep in my brain for all the common hotkeys in Xtree Gold.

A Notepad nightmare leaves sysadmin with something totally unprintable

Criggie

Re: Whitney Houston

A tape recording of primary-school children signing christmas carols works well here, the worse the better.

And its royalty free too.

From Soviet to science fiction icon, the weird life of Isaac Asimov 100 years on

Criggie

Hoi! Spoilers!!! *scold*

BOFH: 'Twas the night before Christmas, and the ransomware struck

Criggie

Re: A what USB stick?

I expected it to be one of those USB drives chock-full of capacitors, and charged up to some number of kilovolts.

USB Killer was one name... https://techcrunch.com/2015/03/12/this-usb-drive-can-nuke-a-computer/

The Register disappears up its own fundament with a Y2K prank to make a BOFH's grinchy heart swell with pride

Criggie
Devil

Beelzeboss ?

Stack Overflow makes peace with ousted moderator, wants to start New Year with 2020 vision on codes of conduct

Criggie

Re: The article is...not great

Peter Norton for Emperor!

Remember the Dutch kid who stuck his finger in a dam to save the village? Here's the IT equivalent

Criggie
Coat

Re: Junior Customer Engineer

I still have a small wrench on my keyring, perhaps 5mm or 3/16th of an inch.

Its got an apple logo on it and a double offset, and was used for holding those lug nuts on the back of IO cards. Dates from 1989 when I was at high school and we were fitting apple //e with mouse cards. I would have been about 13 and learned a lot mostly watching other people do the upgrade.

So El-Regonauts and Commentards alike, what weird and wonderful things are on your keyring?

I do wish we could add photos in-line here.

Criggie

Re: El Reg weights and measures soviet

...so why does time slow down at that instant?

I swear its like a road accident - perceived time slows down as the adrenaline kicks in perhaps?

Irish eyes aren't smiling after govt blows €1m on mega-printer too big for parliament's doors

Criggie

Re: 3.1 metres in height

"Autobots! .... paper out!"

Or I'm now imagining Optimus Prime say "PC Load Letter" in a slightly annoyed voice.

Return of the audio format wars and other money-making scams

Criggie

Re: Hmmm...

My CD player in the workshop is an old 8x cdrom drive with a play and stop button on the front. Its crowbarred into the housing of an old IBM 5.25" external floppy drive, which has a suitable internal PSU.

The only hackery was putting a stereo RCA out connector on the back . Works well in the garage.

When the IT department speaks, users listen. Or face the consequences

Criggie

Re: Beautiful

Yep - used to have a net use h: /home in a login script for XP clients in the 2000s/

Then one serve of new machines started coming with those 4 port USB card readers, and windows used C through H for them.

C Boot partition

D second partition

E Optical drive

F/G/H/I drives were four card reader slots even if they were empty.

And the net use command simply failed. Fix was to assign O for Optical drive, and UVWX for cardreaders, leaving H for home, N and M for Network and MUSAC, S for Student and T for Temp.

Socket to the energy bill: 5-bed home with stupid number of power outlets leaves us asking... why?

Criggie
Angel

Re: Show us the circuit breakers!

I have 168 switchports at home, and no I don't run a business.

Two 48Gig, 4SFP, 4QSFP port stacked junipers = 2x56 = 112

Two 24 port POE HP Procurves with 4SFPs = 2x28 = 56

Remember Maxim 37 - "there is no overkill...."

Blood, snot and fear: Why the travelling lone tech reporter should always knock twice

Criggie
Joke

Should have tried it in an ATM or eftpos machine - sounds like you had a Mastercard.

Behold the perils of trying to turn the family and friends support line into a sideline

Criggie

Re: Right cable, wrong hole.

Always feel for the earth pin - being slightly longer, it helps avoid the three-tries of wrong-wayness.

Pro tip: Plug in your Tesla S when clocking off, lest you run out of juice mid hot pursuit

Criggie

Re: Due To Police Incompetence

"Due to Police Impedence" FTFY

Divert the power to the shields. 'I'm givin' her all she's got, Captain!'

Criggie

Re: Why do they always forget the cooling?

My old boss was an ex-lineman, and used to tell a story about a farm dog who would bark whenever the phone was about to ring, but only in summer.

Turned out the mutt was chained up to the ground stake, and in summer the ground was dry and a poor conductor. Dog was some metres away and with water bowls etc, was a better ground conduction path than the earth stake. 75 V ringing voltage through K9-grade conductor induced the barking.

Handcranked HTML and JPEG japes. What could possibly go wrong?

Criggie

Was it "secure your peripherals to your desk before some lazy coworker swipes them" ?

One person's harmless japery can be another's night of LaserJet Lego

Criggie

You really should go read all the comments. Some corkers amongst them.

Criggie

Re: Paracetamol tablets

That is a user with whom you should establish a good working relationship.

Criggie

Re: That bloody BSoD Screen Saver

That is why you disable the BSOD option and leave it displaying the sad mac or the amiga bombs or the sparc coredump - basically all the options that AREN'T in your physical hardware lineup.

A bit of cognitive dissonance never hurt anyone.

Criggie

Re: I know the series well...

So - barely 10% into their working life then.....

Criggie

Re: I know the series well...

I've still got a laserjet 4 in my spare room, with a parallel port jetd-erect too. Works superlatively for printing large runs of stuff, cos the cartridges are dirt cheap now.

At 4 ppm you can print for just over 2 hours till have to refill the 500 page tray.

Prints fine from Linux, but Microsoft killed the driver in win7 and later.

It will never be safe to turn off your computer: Prankster harnesses the power of Windows 95 to torment fellow students

Criggie

Re: W98 was OK, but W95 and USB ..

I rememeber having to choose a Sony Mavica as the school's first digital camera in ~1999, cos it saved ~14 jpg files onto a 3.5" floppy disk. All the desktops were NT4 so no USB.

Criggie

Re: sad mac

Dude - go buy Synergy. Its absolutely gomsaggingly essential in your situation.

You have one keyboard and mouse on the master, and the other machines have theirs removed or shoved around the back.

All the clients simply look to the master for K+M inputs, and you move your mouse cursor from screen to screen just like normal. I run 2 clients and a master at work, and it support a lot more. Of course you can't drag windows from one machine to another, but you can (mostly) copy and paste data in the clipboard between machines. And if the master or clients have multimonitors of their own, that works great too.

Its so simple its utterly forgettable. https://symless.com/synergy

(Just a user, no connection)

I couldn't possibly tell you the computer's ID over the phone, I've been on A Course™

Criggie
Thumb Up

Re: He should be proud that of that guy

My old boss told a story about being instructed to fetch a left-handed shovel.

Obviously stores guy knew the line and said "we ain't got none", so he asked for a regular shovel and temporarily borrow a grinder and cutoff wheel. Proceeded to cut off the folded-over bit of the blade for where the right-foot pushes, changing it to a left-foot shovel.

He took that back to the foreman and was doubtless branded a smart arse for life.

Y2K, Windows NT4 Server and Notes. It's a 1990s Who, Me? special

Criggie

Re: A production server? I raise you a datacentre!

Switch/router backups are frequently overlooked. I like Oxidized, but RANCID does the same sort of config management.

Set it up once, add/test new devices, and then forget about them until there's a crisis.

(wanders off to confirm mine's running as expected)

Criggie

Re: Sticky labels help unless...

Not sure what your wall plates look like, but most of them have a clip-on cover and the main part which is screwed to the wall.

I've always put the pretty sticker label on the clip-on cover, but also written the port number directly on the plate underneath. Sometimes there's a label on the wire in the wall, but that's less-visible.

Criggie

Re: Shutting down the wrong server

Take the bezel off and store them in a box elsewhere.

Label the bare case.

Minimization of fuckup potential is always good.

BOFH: Oh, go on, let's flush all that legacy tech down the toilet

Criggie

Re: Steganography? Encryption?

You get strong one-way encipherment. Good luck getting it deciphered though.

Lyft pulls its e-bike fleet from San Francisco Bay Area after exploding batteries make them the hottest seat in town

Criggie

Re: Crotch area?

"top-tube" is the proper name. Along with Down tube, Seat tube and Head tube, forming the front or main triangle of the frame.

Yes, the main triangle of a bike frame has approximately 4 sides of unequal length.

Airbus A350 software bug forces airlines to turn planes off and on every 149 hours

Criggie
IT Angle

Serious question - how often would an airplane get completely powered down before this issue was detected?

Are plane engineers like sysadmins who have uptime wanks about the longest uptime they've had, and then explain why it ended ?

When you play the game of Big Spendy Thrones, nobody wins – your crap chair just goes missing

Criggie
FAIL

Re: Not IT - food industry

Here in New Zealand, Cadbury's never recovered from the stupidity of switching the recipe to include palm oil. Customers voted with their feet and found superior chocolate in Whittakers and other brands. Cadbury backpedalled fast, but never escaped. Now they've shut the Dunedin factory and have to import their brown sticks from Australia.

Globalisation be damned.

Suspected dark-web meth dealers caught by, er, 'using real address' when buying stamps

Criggie

Re: For fun..

It'd be perfectly reasonable for the story to say "they received over 750 bitcoin which would be worth $8.8million USD today"

But why let facts and small numbers detract from the story ?

BOFH: What's Near Field Implementation? Oh, you'll see. Turn left here

Criggie
Angel

Re: Simon's Travails

I remember a time in the early 2000s when I was working at a high school, doing IT stuff, and something weird was going on with NTP.

The details escape me but it was to do with a leap second, and I was incorrect, so in foolish youthful ignorance I posted about it on an operator's email list.

Well bugger me if the authentic Simon didn't ring me up to correct me. Colour me star-struck, still remember the event almost two decades later.

Criggie

"Coloured Pencil" is an upgrade from the former titles of "Crayon wielders " or "Crayon-eaters"

Must watch: GE's smart light bulb reset process is a masterpiece... of modern techno-insanity

Criggie

Make sure they need resetting, and there are at least two different firmware versions.

Criggie

Re: "smarter lighting in every way"

I added some smarts into my garage lighting.... with three doors, it was going to be too much work to wire in more switches and run traveller cables.

So I put a 360 degree motion sensor in the ceiling, and it turns the lights on whichever door you open.

That's plenty smart-enough for me.

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