* Posts by Jimmy2Cows

1998 publicly visible posts • joined 6 Feb 2015

Web pages a little too style over substance? Behold the Windows 98 CSS file

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Re: Better

Pah usability tests are so last-century. This is the era of being agile and disruptive, form over function. Which is why almost every UI design is a steaming pile of inconsistent, confusing, poorly thought out shite.

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At least Win98 controls followed a thought-out design standard. You could see the reasoning behind it even if you found the appearance a bit stark, and controls are easily recognisable.

Modern UI's tend to appear as though thrown together by some MBA cretin who thinks crusty concepts like usability aren't sufficiently "disruptive".

Why should the UK pensions watchdog be able to spy on your internet activities? Same reason as the Environment Agency and many more

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Possibly true, though their systems would in theory need proper oversight and compatability with ECHR and so on.

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Re: In other news

Anyone know Boris' NI number? Or perhaps a random selection of MP's NI's would be better. Too easy to detect if everyone uses the same number.

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No one else may snoop. Whitehall only.

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Re: Great, more personal data leakage from UkGov agencies.

Nope it's been thought out, legislated, and implemented exactly as desired. Provide an "oversight" office so those challenged in the thinking department don't object, knowing full well it can never do anything to actually prevent these massive overreaches.

Internet root keymasters must think they're cursed: First, a dodgy safe. Now, coronavirus upends IANA ceremony

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... break the rules over non-essential services in Los Angeles...


Surely "keeping the internet root zone" safe and working counts as an essential service.

Singapore's corona-crushing superhero squad grounded by football fans

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change.org petition found 900 Liverpool fans willing to sign up

Oh FFS! Proof positive that some idiots really have nothing better to do than get offended by things that aren't actually anything to do with them.

So some Asian comic character has an ethos that's vaguely yet not at all like your favourite pitch anthem. It's not about you. It's not about your club. It's not taking the piss out of "your" song. Get over it you twats!

Lockdown endgame? There won't be one until the West figures out its approach to contact-tracing apps

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Re: The app will also record the proximity between the two devices

Everyone's phone in proximity will beep and/or buzz, activate NFC and urge everyone to touch phones. Range between devices is always zero thus guaranteeing everyone alerted was definitely close enough. It's a plan so perfect it can't possibly fail.

Weeks before US oil contract prices went negative, a spear-phishing crew went after oil firms. What did they get?

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Re: "Bitdefender has provided a list of file hashes to block and indicators of compromise"

Doesn't need to recompile itself, just needs a data section in its file(s) which can be randomly overwritten each time the virus executes. Size doesn't change but the content does. That will change its hash upon every execution, and as long as no functional code is overwritten there will be no impact on running the virus code.

Academics: We hate to ask, but could governments kindly refrain from building giant data-slurping, contact-tracing coronavirus monsters?

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Intrigued to hear your suggestions on how to implement that...

Typically the only people that run for office should never be in office.

Certainly for high office, it's really rare to find anyone not in it for themselves.

And since elections only care about those who bother to vote, anyone not voting is effectively ignored even when non-voters becomes (or is) the significant majority.

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Re: haven't heard a good reason why this isn't simply GPS based

Ok here's a few that took maybe 3 seconds to arrive at:

GPS can be wildly innacurate - up to 100 meters error

Doesn't work well in dense urban environments with lots of tall buildings

Far more power-hungry than bluetooth

Requires a constant data connection to know who is in your vicinity at all times, or...

... a need to centrally store and analyse the data, along with identifiers, to know whom to alert

Governements and/or their agencies will abuse this information simply because it exists

Need I continue...?

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Re: And the non-centralised approach

And yet, countries that have implemented a variant of this (e.g. Singapore, Taiwan, South Korea) have had far less problem with COVID-19 than others.

Yes there are various reasons why it's imperfect on its own. But to be effective it's not used on its own. It works best with efficient and extensive testing and contact tracing, which countries successfully using these tracking apps also have.

It's no magic bullet by itself and (for me) that's the most important and concerning aspect. Western governments will roll this out (because that's cheap) without investing in conjugate requirements of extensive testing and aggressive contact tracing (because that's expensive), and then act all surprised when it proves ineffective. Cue multiple large repeat waves of infection while they slowly figure out why.

Yeah we can expect repeat infection waves anyway. Doing this properly will limit the magnitude. Doing this the way UK gov has approached things so far...?

Iran military manages to keep a straight face while waggling miracle widget that 'can detect coronavirus from 100m away'

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Re: No wonder Iran officially reports so few cases

It probably also cures upon detection. But they left that bit out of the presentation. State secrets, don't want to reveal full capabilities to the infidels etc.

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Re: When it's over I'm moving my company to Iran

I'm guessing you don't shoot your team members for failures and non-compliance.

UK government to take equity in struggling startups with £250m 'Future fund'

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Re: WTF! You call that a plan?

Not at all. In another totally not-contraditory edict from gov, UK parks must remain open even though no one's allowed to gather in them.

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Re: 8%!?

But look. Look!! They're doing something to help startups. Just don't look behind the curtain, there's nothing interesting there. Nosiree.

Ignore that anyone would need to be mad and desperate to take those terms.

Ignore the Chancellor knowing that full well.

As with all this government's promises around COVID-19 (e.g. see the PPE promises) this is all about appearances, not about being actually helpful. Helping costs money. Lip service is free.

Contact-tracing or contact sport? Defections and accusations emerge among European COVID-chasing app efforts

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Re: Generalised testing

What's needed is a relatively cheap and simple home test that gives you a quick yes or no, 99% accurate. Then go to a more dedicated test facility for confirmation (or call health bods and they send someone (well protected) to you).

Sort of like a home pregnancy test, but probably a blood prick not pissing on a stick.

Same for antibody tests to see if you've had it already (acknowledging there's currently no evidence that antibodies = future immunity).

This is the only way to do entire population testing. The logistics of testing everyone at dedicated facilities are far too impractical.

I believe there has been some progress in this area, but not sure how far along it is, or how accurate the results are.

As nice as Pai: FCC chairman comes out in favour of Ligado Networks' 5G proposal, despite criticism from airlines and military

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This just gets better and better.

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Re: F*** the f-ing military.

Rabid yet curiously self-censoring at the same time. That takes some effort.

So, is it just the US military you f***ing hate, or all militaries?

And you realise of a lot of civilian infrastructure depends on those same miltary technologies you'd like to see crushed? GPS ain't just for positioning. A boatload of things use it for timings in everyday life.

Facebook's Libra Association tries again at this digi-cash game, with more modest ambitions after global flop

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Their buzzword kung-fu is weak

Surprised they didn't throw in a few synergies and paradigm shifts. And mentioning blockchain without AI or ML..? Amateurs.

Cloudflare outage caused by techie pulling out the wrong cables

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Thumb Up

Re: Cables with labels on

Can't upvote this enough.

Code should always be self-documenting, i.e. meaningful descriptive identifiers, no side-effects. A function/method should do exactly what its name states and nothing more.

Comments are to understand the reasoning, expectations and failure points.

Especially valuable in these agile times where documentation is, at best, an afterthought.

India allows half of IT services workers back to the office next week

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Re: Good grief.

Careful with those sweeping statements. I've found many Indians' command of the English language, grammar and spelling to be far above that of many native-English speakers.

Perhaps shockingly, both cases can, and do occur. Go figure.

Second-wave dotcom Uber-investor Softbank forecasts gargantuan losses as world economy faces slump

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Re: Dutch stores rammed...

The optimist in me wishes them well.

The realist in me is waiting to see if there is rebound in infection rates.

From Brit telly presenter Eamonn Holmes to burning 5G towers in the Netherlands: Stupid week turns into stupid fortnight for radio standard

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Re: British journalism exists for 2 purposes...

Harder to take you seriously when you say "2 purposes", yet list 4.

That said, I tend to agree with the 2nd and 3rd of your 2 purposes.

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Re: The RF nutters

So... remove the head and the problem goes away... I like where you're going with this. Eagerly awaiting the Shaun of the Dead-style news announcements on how best to tackle this scourge.

Apple: We respect your privacy so much we've revealed a little about what we can track when you use Maps

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But the data also shows a little of what Apple is capable of.

What, counting requests made to direction servers is somehow an unexpected, amazing and worrying capability? Surely this is mundane info for any data service provider, of any data service.

Where's the needless hyperboly icon?

Taiwan to develop military exoskeleton because it's not like these things are open-sourced or one-size-fits-all

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These things can be unpowered, and there are multiple advances in this field already with clever combinations of springs, cables, webbing and mechanisms to augment the wearer's movements, help with load bearing by transferring loads to the ground around (instead of through) the wearer's spine and legs.

Not as much augmentation as a powered exo, but works all the time. And sure, they're no Talos, so limited, if any armour, but Talos only exists as feverred wish-dreams of certain Generals and their arms suppliers.

There are also advances in engine miniaturisation which can provide surprising amounts of power for their sizes. Multiple kilowatts. The thinking is batteries for stealth, internal combustion for combat or other high-energy use-cases e.g. search and rescue, moving equipment.

We lost another good one: Mathematician John Conway loses Game of Life, taken by coronavirus at 82

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Re: excited us Biologists

Aha yes, the flyer. That self-perpetuating group of cells that would launch off and stimulate growth in other cell groups it hit. Getting a flyer to spawn another flyer was a neat trick.

Astroboffins suspect twin-star smash may be the culprit for most biggest and brightest supernova yet spotted

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Not fitting that pair in a wheelbarrow.

Upstart Americans brandish alligators at the almighty Reg Standards Soviet

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Re: Alligator...

I'd prefer the gator. I expect the queue shortens rapidly when you join it with your gator separation-enforcer.

Not sure the roo would stick around long enough to be much help.

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Re: Well, I tried ...


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Re: Remember...

Dude's gonna be exhausted. He'll have to start cloning himself just to keep up with demand. Hmm. Maybe that's a rabbit hole we don't want to head down...

Low-orbit internet banking fraud claim alleged to be a load of space junk

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Re: Perhaps, Perhaps not

Investigators able to read a bank's log files sounds more juicey, like they perhaps somehow gained ellicit access to those records.

Investigators looking at things handed over due to a court order is completely expected in thses cases, therefore is humdrum, boring.

Gotta sex these things up. It's borderline run-of-the mill as is. Two people fall out, separate, argue over things, one alleges the other messed with their bank account. Wow. Like that never happened before. If it weren't for the ISS-o'naut angle this would be a total non-event.

Dixons Carphone top brass take 20% pay cut as swathes of Brit workforce furloughed

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Re: Tesco is paying shareholders £900m in dividends while enjoying £585m from the government

Not SHOUTY enough.

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Re: What is this furloughing?

Hearing/seeing the term everywhere and understanding its meaning are two different things.

Even if the general meaning is understood, there may be nuances which can bend the meaning beyond its standard interpretation - as in this government scheme, specifically not being allowed to work whilst furloughed.

We shouldn't slate people for asking a reasonable question, especially for something which can take on a specific meaning in certain contexts.

Sure, [search-engine-of-choice] is your friend and it's not hard to look things up these days. But still, this may not address the specific nuances for each case.

So ask away, just keep in mind some people will get tetchy about it.

Ofcom waves DAB radio licences under local broadcasters' noses as FM switchoff debate smoulders again

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Re: Nope.

Yeah come on El Reg, give us a "Ye cannae defy the law of physics, captain!" icon!

Apple creates face shield for health workers, resists the temptation to call it the 'iMask'

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I don't think Apple's saying they invented it. More that they are fabricating and supplying them.

Invention claims will come later ;)

Just cough into here, please: Cambridge-developed app slurps the sounds of COVID-19

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Re: This is a data grab.

To be fair, the article does say users are asked to indicate whether or not they've tested positive for COVID-19 in the questionaire, as well as submitting audio samples.

To be equally fair, they could have made it much clearer that they'll need as many samples as possible from all cohorts - apparently healthy (no COVID-19 symptoms), potential (has symptoms but not tested) and definite (knowingly has / doesn't have COVID-19).

Come to GoDaddy: 12 million domains – from .biz to .nyc – acquired from Neustar amid promises of lower prices

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Re: “flexible terms” for domains

I saw "flexible terms" as either "subscription" or "auction". Either way it won't be in the consumers' best interests.

As for promising strict separation... uh huh. Yeah. Right. Just like the given example, which is being vertically integrated a few years after acquisition. That separation stayed strict for all of, what...? A couple of years?

Just another attempt at a monopoly hiding behind the thin, pointless and tattered veil of US regulators.

From Amanda Holden to petrol-filled water guns: It has been a weird week for 5G

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Re: ...stick them all on some remote island for the good of the rest of society...

Given the ever-growing levels of fuckwittery in the UK, I think that ship docked here long ago.

Minister slams 5G coronavirus conspiracy theories as 'dangerous nonsense' after phone towers torched in UK

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Re: Personally...

Can't argue with stupid. They'll drag you down to their level, then beat you with their experience.

Zoom vows to spend next 90 days thinking hard about its security and privacy after rough week, meeting ID war-dialing tool emerges

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Re: 90 Days?

Ummm.... since when have the safety requirements for each been remotely equivalent?

NASA's classic worm logo returns for first all-American trip to ISS in years: Are you a meatball or a squiggly fan?

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Re: What difference will having more hair have?

To baldly go where no one has gone before...?

(respects to Captain Jean-Luc Picard)

Australian digital-radio-for-railways Huawei project derailed by US trade sanctions against Chinese tech giant

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Perhaps some arrangement of Huawei Australia, it's parent, and sourcing parts from US providers, makes those parts unavailable to this project...?

Or perhaps Oz gov doesn't want to piss off the US gov.

Perhaps both.

Boeing 787s must be turned off and on every 51 days to prevent 'misleading data' being shown to pilots

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Re: What a Joke

Regulatory capture.

Sun storm probe OK'd: 'Our motivation is a fascinating signal that we have detected for decades but never been able to make an image of'

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Re: We can do Science with toasters now ?

It's talking ones you need to swerve...

Howdy, doodly-doo! Would you like some toast?

If you thought black holes only came in S or XXXL, guess again, maybe: Elusive mid-mass void spotted eating star

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Re: Lower and upper limits

Too many shrooms with your full-English this morning?

How many days of carefree wiping do you have left before life starts to look genuinely apocalyptic? Let's find out

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Re: Safety hint ...

But have you tried getting goose necks in Tesco lately? None on the shelves anywhere. Some bugger must've already purloined the lot.

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Re: intelligent reasoning must be applied

Then all hope is lost!