* Posts by Whitter

853 posts • joined 13 Aug 2007

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Tencent to acquire Brit games developer Sumo Group

Whitter
Pint

Mr Livingstone I presume?

I'll raise a glass to the mighty Ian Livingstone, without whom the gaming world would be a much poorer place

Android devs prepare to hand over app-signing keys to Google from August

Whitter
Flame

Closest icon to a flamey eye

One key to rule them all

One key to find them

One key to bring them all

And in the darkness bind them

BMA and Royal College of GPs refuse to endorse NHS Digital's data grab from surgeries in England

Whitter
Holmes

Does this include historical data?

I lived in England for a year or two many years ago, so there will be some records of that somewhere.

However, I don't think I have any means to avoid this data grab if it does include historical data of people no longer in the NHS system in England/Wales.

Blessed are the cryptographers, labelling them criminal enablers is just foolish

Whitter
Holmes

Order is important

“These platforms are used almost exclusively by SOC [serious and organised crime] groups"

Rather reminds me of the classic logic failure: "I see a black swan; therefore all swans are black"

I might have believed “SOC [serious and organised crime] groups almost exclusively use these platforms"

Though to be honest, I doubt that. There's a lot to be said for being a tree in a forrest.

IBM compiles dataset to teach software how software is made: 14m code samples, half of which actually work

Whitter
Meh

AIs are very context sensitive

So they intend to build an AI that might help me code one of two specific tasks?

Google Play to require privacy labels on apps in 2022, almost two years after Apple

Whitter
Unhappy

Developers will be responsible for writing their own disclosures

So devs who do this responsibly will end up with a scarey list, while the bad actors claim thir apps are nice and clean.

Wait 5 years before it obviosuly fails and needs to be tightened up, aka +5 free years of the wild west.

Vote to turf out remainder of Nominet board looks inevitable after .uk registry ignores reform demands

Whitter
Big Brother

Shine a light

Perhaps PublicBenefit.uk should specifically highlight the "How is your registar voting?" section on their website?

https://publicbenefit.uk/#lookup

Apple begins rejecting apps that use advertising SDKs for fingerprinting users

Whitter

Turkeys / Christmas

It's wack-a-mole. Somebody tries to make tracking more difficult, the tracking industry develops new techniques to continue. They will not stop. Their career is at stake. A career of hacking APIs to achieve the unintended or a career buying/selling the resultant data (despite its dubious value: both sellers and buyers pretend it is data-oil as they'll have no jobs or skills if anyone without skin in the game has a look at the cost/benefit)

Mysterious case of Arizona state senators skipping a vote on tackling Apple and Google's app commissions

Whitter
Thumb Down

He who pays the piper...

People vote for their representatives. They don't pay them.

It appears there is a significant difference.

Big problem: Nominet members won't know how many votes they're casting in decision to oust CEO, chair

Whitter

Personal interests well before corporate

Once ousted, their behaviour should be audited to establish if they can ever be described as "fit and proper" to hold any executive post, anywhere, ever again.

British govt emits fuzzy vision for UK version of American boffin special forces group Darpa

Whitter
Paris Hilton

Post "incubation" what happens? Who owns what?

I assume all the successful outcomes would be sold off to tax-haven investors while the UK keeps all the failures?

Microsoft pulls the sheets off first .NET 6 preview and... it's still a mess. Native Apple Silicon support, though

Whitter
Meh

Who would benefit from using .NET 6?

From the vibe of the article, I'm not sure who would start using .NET 6 who wasn't using .NET before, or why previous .NET users would want to update to .NET 6. If sounds like a half-way-house to doing some new stuff - but not very well yet - so why would you bother? Perhaps it is intended to prove they are following a roadmap to a better mutliplatform IDE, though perhaps not a version to actually use?

Machine-learning software scours database of already available drugs that could treat COVID-19 infections

Whitter
Thumb Up

Interesting work

Interesting as a general approach, not just for Covid.

But how much resistance will there be from big pharma, who really don't like folks reusing old-working rather than paying for new-shiney. Much like any other industry.

Minister tells the House of Lords it'll be another 12 weeks before UK's deleted criminal records can be restored

Whitter
Devil

Karma

How much of the deleted stuff should have been, erm... deleted, rather a long time ago anyway?

How do we combat mass global misinformation? How about making the internet a little harder to use

Whitter
Devil

Blind spots

"It’s harder to anticipate blind spots that only become apparent in moments of greatest need. "

Harder still to 'spot' those you never, erm, spot, 'cos they're blind spots.

ThinkPad T14s AMD Gen 1: Workhorse that does the business – and dares you to push that red button

Whitter
Meh

Mouse button position

I find the mouse buttons being above the trackpad makes click/drag much more tricky: typically a two-hand move.

When the buttons are below, then left-click drag is a thumb-click-hold, any other finger drag. easy.

The obvious downside of buttons-at-the-bottom is accidental button press, something I personally never seemed to do, though no doubt milage varies on that.

And after owning a Lenovo for 6 months or so, I still hate their Fn / Ctrl key layout. BIOS swap option shows that they know this. But don't make the keys the same size so you can swap them.

Google’s Pixel phones to measure heart rate and breathing, other ‘droids coming soon

Whitter
Meh

... measure breaths ...

Pixel phones will measure breaths if users “place your head and upper torso in view of your phone’s front-facing camera and breathe normally.”

Is this intended for measuring a heathy person's breathing rate during gaps during a training run or the like?

Whether useful for that, or indeed anything, rather depend on what thye mean by "normally".

Does it exclude deep or accelerated breathing? Shallow breathing? Require a static upper body? Hmmm...

Study: AI designed to detect diabetic eye disease blinks in the real world, makes more work for doctors

Whitter
Meh

Anything that would increase the rate at which diabetic disease is flagged up from an eye exam would inevitably increase the workload of human reviewers. Is this result really a bad one? Difficult to tell from the article, which implies poor performance but doesn't show the data. e.g. How many true detections were made that would have been (or were) missed by eye docs? Maybe that is in the original research, just not the El Reg snippet.

I guess it ultimately depends on just how many false detections were being made: alarm fatigue is a well-known problem in medical institutions.

Boeing will cough up $2.5bn+ to settle US fraud charge over 737 Max safety

Whitter
Meh

Other countries

With their admission of a failure to act on aviation safety, will any other contries consider banning 737s (or even, as it is evidence of a lack of the 'required' company safety culture, all Boeing craft) from their skies? Until of course they also get a bung of cash and sudenly the risk is gone.

Unsecured Azure blob exposed 500,000+ highly confidential docs from UK firm's CRM customers

Whitter

Re: No more Mr Nice Guy

At the very, very, least, punishment needs to cost more than the savings from not doing it.

Travel agent leaked customer data by – this is embarrassing – giving it away in a hackathon

Whitter
Paris Hilton

No longer runs hackathons

Why not? Seems a PI breach was found in quite a safe environment, they then reacted sensibly and quickly.

Would they rather the issue was found by some balckhats later, then compromised for n-years before they found out?

Feels like the same ol' issue well known to test teams that the dev teams don't like to be told of bugs. Before release. Before anyone else finds out. Sigh.

Currys PC World website crumples into unscheduled maintenance as shoppers chase latest gaming machines

Whitter
Mushroom

"Those lucky enought to have made it..."

Or perhaps not.

https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/www.currys.co.uk

I wasted a month dealing with them in late summer: first they sent the wrong laptop; there's no email to 'customer services', and the 'live chat' they promote everywhere doesn't work; so its a phone line with 1hr waits. Got the wrong device returned and proper one scheduled. But they never bothered to sent the actual order. Rinse an repeat with customer services. Still no laptop. Rinse and repeat again, Finally I noticed on the website they no longer had the thing I wanted in stock and so this was all pointless, so cancelled. A month of hassle and nothing to show for it.

Apple on the hook for another $503m in decade-long VirnetX patent rip-off legal marathon

Whitter
Facepalm

Re: Multichoice

Doh!

Whitter
Unhappy

Multichoice

a) Vexacious litigation

b) Abuse of process

c) Contempt of court

e) All of the above

Alas, no prizes. Only stifling death by finiacial domination.

Atlassian pulls the plug on server licences, drags customers to the cloud

Whitter
Boffin

How easy is it to migrate Confluence content?

Do any of the alternate tools support tools to easily migrate away from Confluence?

Though I suspect that anything one migrates to will pull the same shit in 5 years too, just kicking the can down the road a bit.

Apple seeks damages from recycling firm that didn't damage its devices: 100,000 iThings 'resold' rather than broken up as expected

Whitter
Unhappy

Re: "second to none"

John Lewis are living off a reputation long since gone.

Current views of John Lewis customer service are not so rosey:

https://uk.trustpilot.com/review/www.johnlewis.com

Nominet refuses to consider complaint about its own behaviour, claims CEO didn’t mean what he said on camera

Whitter
Boffin

Clearly out of control

But what mechanism exists to fix it?

TCL's latest e-ink tech looks good on paper, but Chinese giant will have to back up extraordinary claims

Whitter

Re: Nice but...

That's very much use-as-a-e-book case senario. And I completely agree.

But for more general usage, images and so on, contrast ratio / dynamic range is more significant.

On the rear screen of my YotaPhone2, reading text is easy and great.

Browsing websites? Not so good. All the pastels tend to a grey mush.

Whitter
Meh

Nice but...

Refresh rate isn't the real problem with EInk from my useage.

Its poor contrast ratios, poor black level, poor white level (all pretty much the same thing) and previous-image ghosting (when using a low-power refresh).

Whitter
Thumb Up

Re: Great

I still use mine. Great phone.

Unexpected victory in bagging area: Apple must pay shop workers for time they spend waiting to get frisked

Whitter
Boffin

the district court had "erred"

What happens to those that err?

Just curious.

Makes sense, this does, says US appeals court as it swats away Oracle's protests in $10bn JEDI contract spat

Whitter
Thumb Down

Missed the real boat

"... at least three commercial cloud-hosting data centers within the US, separated by at least 150 miles, and met various requirements regarding FedRAMP..."

It seems the lobbying to get the contract had already been won while the tender requirements were being defined.

Physical locks are less hackable than digital locks, right? Maybe not: Boffins break in with a microphone

Whitter
Pint

Excellent work

What a great, proper, idea for a phd!

Well done that student!

You'd think 1.8bn users a day would be enough for Zuck. But no. Oculus fans must sign up for Facebook

Whitter
Boffin

What impact on for-business use?

For example, VR in medical environments. Is there a seperate contract for such, meaning the technology exists for an opt-out but individuals are just being refused that option, or is this the end for Occulus anywhere but in the home?

Texas jury: Apple on the hook for half a billion dollars after infringing 4G LTE patents

Whitter
Joke

Eastern Texas

I wonder if any company has ever set out Terms and Conditions stating thier product was not for use in Eastern Texas, in an attempt to avoid ever being pulled into court there.

UK data watchdog having a hard time making GDPR fines stick: Marriott scores another extension, BA prepares to pay 11% of £183m penalty threat

Whitter
Devil

Falling on sword time?

In order to continue the pretense that the gov actually wants GDPR enforced - while ensuring funding and will for such are entriely lacking - is it time for the Information Commissioner to take one for the team?

i.e. Resign, wait a few months then get a pass into the House of Lords?

AI assistants work perfectly in the UK – unless you're from Cardiff, Glasgow, Liverpool, Birmingham, Belfast...

Whitter
Coat

Eleven!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NMS2VnDveP8

Lock down your data – or get the cheque book out: ICO privacy violation fines are rising, say lawyers

Whitter
Unhappy

Maybe an increase in fines but

As the prosecution rate is so low, one can see why a CEO may just choose to ignore it.

Soft press keys for locked-down devs: Three new models of old school 60-key Happy Hacking 'board out next month

Whitter

Re: Alternatives?

You could try Redragon Gaming Mechanical Keyboard K552

It's quite loud, so I put some o-rings on too to quieten things down a little. Still quite loud thogugh!

Once again, racial biases show up in AI image databases, this time turning Barack Obama white

Whitter
Meh

What if the image is only very slightly blurry?

Maybe it has some legs as a photo sharpening tool rather than trying to patch up a shoddy surveillance cam image?

For years, the internet giants have held on dear to their get-out-of-jail-free card. Here are those trying to take that away

Whitter
Paris Hilton

Be careful what you wish for Mr Trump

That is all

UK.gov announces review – not proper inquiry – into Fujitsu and Post Office's Horizon IT scandal

Whitter

I had assumed that private criminal prosecutions could not be started while there is a potential judicial review on the cards.

Now there isn't, there's just a pointless committee.

So can people now start to being actual prosecutions and ignore the window dressing?

I don't really know

Latest NHS IT revolution is failing to learn lessons from the last £10bn car crash

Whitter
Unhappy

Same as it ever was

Has any large-scale IT project ever learnt any lessons from previous failures?

Other than the lesson that folks who plan out these repeated failures are none-the-less handsomely rewarded, so it isn't a failure from their personal POV?

What do you call megabucks Microsoft? No really, it's not a joke. El Reg needs you

Whitter
Joke

Can we also change Google to "The Monopolist Formerly Known As Not-Evil"?

Whitter

Tricky

Been playing with Has Been, Yesterday's Man, Once Mattered and suchlike. Not really getting anywhere however, my best shot being:

The-Once-And-Future-Borg

which is a tad long IMO.

Then got onto How the mighty have fallen which led to the more succinct

The Fallen

which has a nice Lucifer Morningstar ring to it.

Don't trust deep-learning algos to touch up medical scans: Boffins warn 'highly unstable' tech leads to bad diagnoses

Whitter
Headmaster

Hmm...

A rather long read to establish the idea that AIs aren't very good at handling types of data that were not in their training set.

ICANN finally halts $1.1bn sale of .org registry, says it's 'the right thing to do' after months of controversy

Whitter
Mushroom

Going forward

Time for a new board.

'Nuff said.

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

Whitter

Yup: the line "for no reason other that it will make bureaucrats' lives easier" isn't directly true, in that it should be "for no reason other that it will cost to fund sufficient policing"

Upstart Americans brandish alligators at the almighty Reg Standards Soviet

Whitter
Headmaster

How literal?

Did they mean "keep as far away from somebody as (the length of) an alligator" or "keep as far away from somebody as you would an alligator", a.k.a. stay the hell far away!

Ding-dong. Who's there? Any marketing outfit willing to pay: Not content with giving cops access to doorbell cams, Ring also touts personal info

Whitter

Re: Why are we focusing on the collection of personal information?

Or "as well"?

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