* Posts by parperback parper

38 publicly visible posts • joined 11 Jan 2016

I paid for it, that makes it mine. Doesn’t it? No – and it never did

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Presumably this distinguishes them from fish kettles, which every US kitchen doubtless possesses.

Autonomous Mayflower to attempt Atlantic crossing, again

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Re: Fair winds

Your opponent in the game Carrier Command 2 is an AI controlled ship.

There are some amusing ways to win.

Microsoft exposes glue-free guts of the Surface Laptop Studio

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It's swings and roundabouts.

The Surface Book's extra battery in the keyboard section and well-ventilated CPU behind the screen are novel, but on the other hand with the Macbook removes the need for a hot water bottle.

Android's Messages, Dialer apps quietly sent text, call info to Google

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Or espionage. Members of the government and civil servants have Android phones too.

Rust dust-up as entire moderation team resigns. Why? They won't really say

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Re: Rust Alternatives and Roots

You're thinking of objective C

Remember SoftRAM 95? Compression app claimed to double memory in Windows but actually did nothing at all

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Re: "Windows' registry doesn't need cleaning"

It's increasingly the case that applications don't have installers on Windows, and so they don't have uninstallers either. This is because apps like Steam etc.in the simplest case just dump a pile of files into a folder and expect it to work.

If those apps need registry entries then they will add them when they are first run.

There is no uninstaller, and so no way to then later remove them.

I've got a broken combine harvester – but the manufacturer won't give me the software key

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Re: I do wonder how much it would cost

Two sensors is actually worse than one, because there's now two things to go wrong and if either of them breaks you're stuffed.

With Alphabet's legendary commitment to products, we can't wait to see what its robotics biz Intrinsic achieves

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Re: "the AI can work out the best way to achieve its goal"

looks like the AI has determined that if it flails about at random intervals with the welder going full whack it keeps the meatsacks away.

No operator has made any settings changes for a while, so it seems to be a very stable and hence optimal behaviour.

Amazon notices Apple, Google cutting app store commission rates, follows suit

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Dropping these rates is just proving they are a monopoly...

...because even the threat of possible competition is causing them to reduce their rates.

Therefore, they must have been earning excess monopoly profits up to this point.

If it genuinely was the cost of doing business they couldn't make these cuts.

Ever wondered what it's like working for Microsoft? Leaked survey shines a light on how those at the code coalface feel

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Re: Don't know about MS itself but GitHub is woke

To which you reply 'but Slade'.

'We've heard the feedback...' Microsoft 365 axes per-user productivity monitoring after privacy backlash

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Re: "Productivity" score anything but

It's always a good idea to raise productivity using automation, so we could just write a script to constantly send emails via Office 365.

AWS reveals it broke itself by exceeding OS thread limits, sysadmins weren’t familiar with some workarounds

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Re: Who Knows?

No matter how big your cloud, N-squared will kill you eventually.

In this case number of front end server communication links.

Python swallows Java to become second-most popular programming language... according to this index

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Re: I've never understood what people have against braces (or semicolons)

Braces are a great improvement over BEGIN..END or WHILE...WEND or REPEAT..UNTIL etc. etc. for the lazy typist.

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Re: Sin tax

Ternary is a very neat and easy way to make something const.

int directionMultiplier;

if (goUp)


directionMultiplier = 1;




directionMultiplier = -1;


... and now directionMultiplier can be changed without warning later on (leaks non-constness)


const int directionMultiplier = ( goUp ? 1 : -1 );

... and now directionMultiplier will not change later on.

You'll also notice it's handy for books because it takes up less space.

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Re: Sin tax

And yet the fact that it's still being used 35 years later kind-of suggests that might not be true.

Apple braces for antitrust woes by letting users select and install third-party apps during setup of iOS 14.3

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Re: Walled Garden? Really!

No, you have just opened the gate from the walled orchard into the walled garden.

Apple still has veto permission on what you can install by what it allows into the app store.

Apple's great at selling the image of thinking outside the box, but all they do is provide a slightly bigger box. And then tape it shut.

Did I or did I not ask you to double-check that the socket was on? Now I've driven 15 miles, what have we found?

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Re: My favourite

Wrong approach - ask them to switch it off, unplug it, blow on the plug, then plug it back in and switch on in case 'there's a loose wire' or 'sometimes that helps' or 'there's dust in the connections'.

Then they can notice that it's not switched on and fix it without looking like a right numpty.

Microsoft to rethink crash-prone Visual Studio extension model, shift towards cloud

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Re: Necessary Extensions

Extensions and plug ins are a really great idea!

Until you use two of them.

Another reminder that bias, testing, diversity is needed in machine learning: Twitter's image-crop AI may favor white men, women's chests

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Saliency bias

Nobody is going to notice if the AI gets it right.

They certainly will when it gets it wrong.

There is no safe false matching rate and no matter how hard you try, your system is going to end up making visibly racist/sexist decisions.

Perhaps people should take this into account when deploying an AI system.

A system that makes obvious, but stupid decisions is going to get less flak than one that makes opaque but mostly correct ones.

Coding unit tests is boring. Wouldn't it be cool if an AI could do it for you? That's where Diffblue comes in

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So, it writes characterisation tests, not unit tests.

That I can get behind (although not use until it comes to C++)

Unexpected risks of using Apple ID: 'Sign in with Apple' will be blocked for Epic Games

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Re: Why is this happening?

They didn't wisely do anything. They were ordered to back off by a judge.

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Re: Bad decision

Yes, Apple uses its monopoly power not only to force you to use their payment services, but force you to use their identity services too.

Apple to Epic: Sue me? No, sue you, pal!

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Re: Monopolistic behaviour

What the money is used for is irrelevant. Apple uses its monopoly control over the store to force developers to use its payment system. Other payment systems could work fine and cost less, as Epic demonstrated, but you aren't allowed to use them.

This is anti-competitive, but I don't think that's even in dispute.

The dispute is whether Apple's control over its store constitutes a monopoly in 'the market'. Apple will argue that 'the market' is all mobile apps, so because Google and Android exist they aren't a monopoly. Because they aren't a monopoly they can do what they like in their store.

Epic will argue that 'the market' is iOS apps, so Apple are a monopoly and so can't do what they like in their store.

Google is in a similar boat, but has a much stronger claim to not be a monopoly because alternative Android app stores (and alternative payment methods) actually exist.

Android user chucks potential $10bn+ sueball at Google over 'spying', 'harvesting data'... this time to build supposed rival to TikTok called 'Shorts'

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Re: Well Doh!

This is not an expose of surprising behaviour, this is straightforward bounty hunting.

If Google keeps obviously doing a thing, and that thing can be sued over, then they're going to get farmed by lawyers until they stop.

I think that's how the system is supposed to work.

In Rust, we lust: Security-focused super-C++ language still most loved among Stack Overflow denizens

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A new version every 3 years is the kind of ridiculous instability you expect in the younger languages.

More than a billion hopelessly vulnerable Android gizmos in the wild that no longer receive security updates – research

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Re: This is what the vendors want ...

Apple certainly offer upgrades, but that doesn't mean they get accepted.

My iPod Touch is still being offered upgrades, but as soon as I agree to one in a moment of inattention all the mobile games I actually like will disappear in a puff of 32 bits.

Admins beware! Microsoft gives heads-up for 'disruptive' changes to authentication in Office 365 email service

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365 could be accurate

as this year has 366 days.

How many times do we have to tell you? A Tesla isn't a self-driving car, say investigators after Apple man's fatal crash

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Re: Heretic!

Yup - I want getting into my car to be like Han Solo prepping the Millennium Falcon for take off.

Even if it is only adjusting the wiper speed and defrosting the headlights.

Boss planning to tear you a new one? Google Glass is back: Weird workwear aimed at devs, but on sale to all

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Re: The problem with removing the camera

And yet you don't need a camera to have the weather forecast pop up on a HUD

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"On the other side of the argument, the question is whether it will ever be possible to fulfil the promise of the original concept while respecting the privacy of others."

Well, a simple first step would be not to have a camera on it.

In tribute to Galaxy Note 7, BBC iPlayer support goes up in flames for some Samsung TVs

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iPlayer still works fine on my 2005 Ferguson FTV21F2, because it uses a Fire TV stick passed through an HDMI to SCART box.

I don't see why a TV should last any less than 20 years.

Google risks mega-fine in EU over location 'stalking'

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Re: CASH...CASH is the answer....

Although they can work out where you live pretty easily.

I have a dumb phone and a tablet.

What's all the C Plus Fuss? Bjarne Stroustrup warns of dangerous future plans for his C++

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Although you're better off avoiding the auto if you're using a non-templated function.

That way your IDE will know what type it is, and you'll get a nice compiler error message if someone changes the type of v without telling you.

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Re: Design by committee

Yup. It took a wrong turn with templates, and most of the changes since have been trying to patch up the resulting mess.

And the STL is a nice idea but frequently a pain in the arse to use.

You can't debug it, due to second-class compiler and debugger support.

Minor syntax errors take dozens of lines of garbage to basically say 'template problem'.

Debuggers give you cryptic structures to navigate (because STL is a library, not a language feature, so it gives you implementation detail you really don't care about).

Oh, and the syntax of the STL produces barely readable code. eg. the standard idiom for checking if a container contains something reads as 'if, between the start and end items of the container you don't find the not found item'.


if ( std::find(vector.begin(), vector.end(), item) != vector.end() ) // Actual STL


if (vector.contains(item)) // What readable code would look like

Good luck saying 'Sorry I'm late, I had to update my car's firmware'

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Re: OTA Updates for Cars

And if these guidelines are followed, the borking update will be promptly installed and you won't be able to roll it back.

The curious case of a wearables cynic and his enduring fat bastardry

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Or, exactly the same WITHOUT sending all your data to World+Dog


Which does what a fitbit does for £5 and without sending all your data to a central hacker repository.

Warning! May contain traces of Carol Vorderman.

Dear Tesla, stop calling it autopilot – and drivers are not your guinea pigs

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Not necessarily useful

Sounds like a bad idea to turn OFF the self driving when there isn't anyone holding the wheel.

Turning it ON, with some kind of alarm would be a better option.

Anyway, this is all bass-ackwards.

If this was about safety, the human should have to drive all the time with the Autopilot kicking in only if they do something blatantly stupid (with the ability to do a conscious override, a la stability control).

Intel admits Skylakes can ... ... ... freeze in the middle of work

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Re: P's and Q's (or P's and S's)

Of course if it was a programmer, and not a mathematician or an engineer, they would have meaningful variable names and not use letters as though they were rationed.