* Posts by Cursorkeys

34 publicly visible posts • joined 12 Aug 2016

Observation: Slow-burn space HAL 'em up fires adventure game genre into the exosphere


No Steam? No Thanks.

Another Epic exclusive then. I don't want another launcher, I have my games library on Steam and all my friends are on there. The April Fools launcher-launcher: 'A launcher for your launchers!' is becoming less and less like a joke.

Epic's poaching of titles with huge signing bonuses (only if you're exclusive, can't have any pesky competition!) is beyond obnoxious.

Huawei P30 Pro: Nifty camera tricks haven't made mobe mandatory over last year's model


> (Not that Samsung, Oppo, or Xiaomi are any better)

I've just bought a Xiaomi Mi A2 to replace my venerable Samsung Note 3. The A2 runs Android One, so no complaints on the UI side. No bundled crap-apps either.

It was also 150 quid delivered and, IMHO, it's as nice looking as my brother's, pricey, Samsung S9.

Boeing big cheese repeats pledge of 737 Max software updates following fatal crashes


Re: Lifts the veil on aviation ...

So clearly having a "pilots licence" isn't enough, if every individual airplane has different controls and responses. Suggesting pilots need to train to the plane ?

This already happens, the extra license needed for a particular plane is known as a Type Rating.


Ah, this military GPS system looks shoddy but expensive. Shall we try to break it?


Re: Miltary testing

We used to make gear for the police. By the end of development practically everything external was described by the relevant supplier as: 'vandal proof'. Never seen such destruction of kit before!

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


"I use a map."

I remember the bad old days too, map scrunched up on the steering wheel while you desperately try to work out if the motorway exit just disappearing is the one you really needed.

As a baby engineer, I once got stuck on the Coventry ring-road after visiting Marconi. Every turn I took eventually brought me back onto the bloody ring-road. I began to seriously suspect I may die there, endless circling 'picturesque' Coventry...

Now I just tell the sat nav where I want to go and it does it flawlessly with zero effort on my part, even taking into account the dynamic traffic situation. I'd never go back to paper maps willingly.

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


Re: Technician Vs Engineer



Re: A lot of snobs in here today.

They eat their own as well. I have a BSc in Electronic Engineering not a BEng, so some have said I'm not properly an engineer.

Interestingly you do not need a formal qualification in the UK to become a Chartered Engineer. You just need to prove yourself, which seems right and proper to me.

Chip flinger Micron reels in production, expenses as revenue growth comes to crashing halt


I find that hard to believe. Lead-times for Flash memory and SRAM are being pushed out to ridiculous levels and the disties are saying its because of 'market demand'.

Samsung's sleek 'n' sporty X5 SSD pledges blazing transfer speeds


What a nice bike lamp

Before I saw 'SSD' the only thing that popped into my head was 90's bicycle light. Not a fan of the styling personally.

Foolish foodies duped into thinking Greggs salads are posh nosh


Re: Food resembleing other food

>veal (I know, it was one of those "I've got to try it once" moments overriding any ethical thoughts)

Veal's fine, ethics-wise, in the UK. we've outlawed the cruel production practices for at least a decade, overseas is variable especially once you get out of the EU.

From frog to prince: How private equity may fish Barracuda from the industry's boiling pot


These gits bought my Spam Appliance provider, Mail Foundry, and then immediately dropped the entire product line. Being an American company there was no refund for my mostly unused annual subscription, their response when I asked was basically just SFYL.

No worries though, they did offer a reduced cost transition to a Barracuda Appliance...for about 10 times what we were paying.

Told them to get stuffed and built my own using MailScanner + Mailborder, free and works very well.

OnePlus 6: Perfect porridge? One has to make a smartphone that's juuuust right


Re: Note 4

>Still rocking my note 4

Still rocking a Note 3 here, for the same reasons (except waterproof). I think it's on its third battery now.

XDADevelopers is doing a sterling job supplying me with ROMs so I'll keep using it until it has a catastrophic hardware failure.

Edit: When it dies I'll replace it with one of Huawei's big-screen offerings via GearBest. Lovely phones and only a couple of hundred quid.

Sysadmin hailed as hero for deleting data from the wrong disk drive


I'm sure nearly everyone's done it...

I've accidentally ddrescue'd with the target and source reversed and copied a nice, new, blank drive over the one with the data.

Thankfully I had a tested backup and apart from the added faff, and a very red face, nothing was lost.

So far one lesson was enough and I haven't repeated the error...

Home fibre in the UK sucks so much it doesn't even rank in Euro study


Re: False advertising!

"Can you get optical fibre modems? No. So it has to convert to coax at some stage. 50m of coax on the end of a fibre is no loss."

Incorrect gibberish.

I had a 1 Gbps FTTP connection with Gigaclear. It terminated straight onto a Genexis fiber modem via a normal SC connector (https://genexis.eu/product/hybrid/).

No co-ax involved at any point, it was then gigabit ethernet over copper to the rest of the house.

We already give up our privacy to use phones, why not with cars too?


Finance figures are a bit scary

The "Already, four-fifths of new cars in the UK are bought with personal contract plans" sounded like a load of carp so I dug out the latest SMMT figures, it's even slightly higher than that. Add in other dealer finance and only about 10% of new cars in the UK are bought outright (or with personal loans).

I've always wondered how people could afford a new car that wasn't a Suzuki Alto, rampant finance seems to be the answer.

National Museum of Computing rattles the bucket: Help shift war-winning proto-puter


Support TNMOC, Boycott Bletchley Park

TNMOC is a very worthwhile cause and well worth a visit, but I've stopped visiting Bletchley Park itself for the disgraceful way they've treated TNMOC.

The modernisation of Bletchley Park was not sympathetic either, it's quite clear they wanted a lucrative tourist attraction first and if some history managed to cling to the site then whatever.



User stepped on mouse, complained pedal wasn’t making PC go faster


Re: Old as the hills

"Apparently toddlers who have learned to use a touch-screen tablet then wonder why pictures in paper books and magazines don't respond in the same way."

I've tried to pinch-zoom a book before, been confused for a split-second, and then had to sheepishly go and find my glasses.

At Christmas, do you give peas a chance? Go cold turkey? What is the perfect festive feast?


Re: Goose

But if you don't have Yorkshire puddings what are you going to use to hold the gravy for dunking the sprouts in?

You have to make a dyke out of the vegetables otherwise and that's risking it'll hold while you go on a frontal offensive on the rest of the meal.

Disk drive fired 'Frisbees of death' across data centre after storage admin crossed his wires


Re: Nah. We were civilized, no rodeo in the data center.

Not a drive but I witnessed an massive SMT pick-and-place machine hopping a good couple of feet in the air.

We'd moved factories and someone had the bright idea to put the SMT equipment on the mezzanine floor, you know, the one made of springy plywood.

When these machines start up they run an exercise cycle with the placement heads moving between min and max coordinates at maximum speed. The servomotors involved are enormous as the machines can place nearly 4 components per second. This motion coupled with the springy floor to make for a definite brown-trousers moment for everyone involved.

After power was removed they were swiftly lifted back downstairs and onto a nice, solid, concrete floor.

Wondering why your internal .dev web app has stopped working?


Re: Be careful with .local

Not really. The common use-case was for things like OWA portals, and you _didn't_ have to self cert until recently as CAs would quite happily issue you a cert for, say, whatever.mycompany.local until the rules changed.

Edit: That obviously didn't change it being not a great idea, but you could if you wanted.


Re: Re: Be careful with .local

Exactly, don't ever use any domain you don't own.

.local will also bite you even harder in the bum as you can't get a cert from any CA for a domain with a reserved name in it since a few years ago: https://cabforum.org/internal-names/

Some people remain convinced that the NETBIOS name and the AD FQDN are one and the same, but you can have a nice 'mycompany' NETBIOS name while having 'internal.mycompany.com' as the FQDN.

Guy Glitchy: Villagers torch Openreach effigy


What a shame I missed it. Openreach caused a three month delay to my project by being crap.

They had a to do a b-end shift and upgrade of a fibre line. They came and surveyed, made a date and then came back and did it. So good so far.

Then the service provider called and asked if we knew why Openreach hadn't been in? I said they had and it was working, albeit not re-provisioned to the maximum speed of the bearer yet. The provider went away to talk to Openreach.

Then we entered a twilight-zone where Openreach claimed point-blank that the line wasn't installed and if we were connected to any line it wasn't ours and we couldn't use it!

This went on for a few weeks and finally, after sending pictures, we managed to convince them that the line was indeed installed.

The provider went away to talk to the actual hardware owner to get the bandwidth changed. Then they rang in a panic saying we hadn't paid Openreach hundreds of pounds for 'excess-construction charges' and they were threatening the fabric owner. Needless to say this was the first we had heard of this.

Cue more messing around for many weeks until both parties got in touch to say Openreach had given up trying to collect after being told this was 1. ridiculous, 2. unprofessional and 3. they didn't have a signed order for these extra changes anyway.

TLDR: Burn a bigger one next time.

Why you can't boycott the Mail: Google makes a mint from 'fake news'


Re: Re: And the advertisers wonder...

I was fine with the web before it was covered in advertising and I'd be fine if every site that depended on advertising died or went behind a paywall.

That's what really annoys me about this 'it's stealing!' squealing. No it isn't and no we don't care if your business model of ad-supported cat pictures isn't viable without the ads. Get a workable business model instead.

Go on IBMers, tell us what you really think



IPL Borked Mainframe?

Last thing I had to bootstrap was an LSI-11/73, there was no resident bootstrap in it. Thankfully someone had taped a very yellow sheet of hex to the side.

Had to take a hairdryer to the (linear!) power supplies on cold days.

There's a way to dodge Fasthosts' up-to-160% domain renewal hike but you're not gonna like it


Re: LNC.com

We use LCN as a registrar and host, seems reasonable and the support is decent.

Have a huge bunch of domains on Fasthosts that we were debating keeping as they were set up by marketing, guess we'll transfer any we want to keep to LCN (probably none) and just let the rest lapse.

Essentially invisible: Android big-daddy Andy Rubin's hypetastic mobe 'flops in first month'


Re: First I heard of these

Same, first I've heard of it and I've been looking at new phones to get for a month or so.

Think my next one will be a Xiaomi Mi Mix 2, specs of a top end western phone at half the price. Pretty thing too.

Dyson to build electric car that doesn't suck


Re: I'd trust the build quality

You're being disingenuous. No-one spends £1000 on a telephone. Some people spend a lot on a portable computer than has 'phone' as one of it's features, quite a big difference.

The average purchase price for a smartphone is also a fraction of your grand anyway: https://www.statista.com/statistics/510668/smartphone-average-selling-price-worldwide/


His 'patented digital motor tech' is just a garden-variety brushless motor dressed up with enough marketing glitter to make Apple blush. Zero-carbon emissions...because it doesn't have carbon brushes. Writing crap like that should physically hurt.

Pity we can't power the car on the hot air coming out of James Dyson.

Good news: Samsung's Tizen no longer worst code ever. Bad news: It's still pretty awful


A good thread about this on TheDailyWTF

There is a wonderful thread by a Sammy programmer on The Daily WTF Forums about EFL (the software framework under Tizen), if you know even the basics of programming it's hours of entertainment:


As a wonderful bonus Carsten Haitzler himself appears on page 5 to defend his baby. He promptly goes full pants-on-head; shortly afterwards the forum is banned on the Samsung Intranet.

We also find out that "BITCH" and "NAUGHTY PROGRAMMER!!! SPANK SPANK SPANK!!!" are totally normal messages for professional software to produce...

Virgin America mid-flight panic after moron sets phone Wi-Fi hotspot to 'Samsung Galaxy Note 7'


Custom ROM?

Might not be malicious/poor judgement. I have a custom ROM on my Note 3 and the hotspot (and handset name) is currently set to 'Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge'.

I didn't set that so it must be baked into the ROM as the default. Maybe he just had a Note 7 ROM on there.

Is your Windows 10, 8 PC falling off the 'net? Microsoft doesn't care


We're seeing this (since Monday morning) on a solitary Windows 10 Pro machine. It works fine until the DHCP lease expires then drops to a private IP with the accompanying gnashing of teeth from the user.

Interestingly, the only fix is a full reboot or an 'ipconfig /release *' 'ipconfig /renew *' cycle. Despite claiming it doesn't have a lease, disabling and re-enabling the adaptor or re-plugging the ethernet cable does not cause it to get a new lease while the manual method seems to be 100% effective.

We're avoiding the problem by giving that one client a static IP until Microsoft fixs this.

Meet Deliveroo's ‘bold and impactful’ new logo. No, really


It looks a little...not good.

Also, quite similar to RabbitMQ's logo (https://www.rabbitmq.com/).

Accountancy software firm Sage breached in apparent insider attack


Re: A precient quote from a couple of weeks ago:

"There is no company that integrates payroll, time and billing, general ledger, CRM the way we do"

Yep, I'd believe that. Everyone else's solution probably works.

Sage's software is the buggiest set of rubbish I've ever worked with. It frequently corrupts its own database and when you ask 'support' for diagnostic help they shrug their shoulders and/or claim it has no logs or diagnostic features whatsoever...They'll happily charge you to repair the data though.

There are even third parties that have built businesses on repairing Sage databases for less than the cost of having Sage do it.

Swiss firm still wants to eat up Pi flogger Premier Farnell


FFS, Farnell is a major UK electronic component distributor.

It's like saying Waitrose is a 'pork pie distie'. True but a miniscule part of their business.