* Posts by Unoriginal Handle

68 publicly visible posts • joined 30 Oct 2016


Techie labelled 'disgusting filth merchant' by disgusting hypocrite

Unoriginal Handle

I had this . . . https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yo5ARinUHbU&ab_channel=SoundEffectsTras

BT and OneWeb deliver internet to rock in Bristol Channel – population 28

Unoriginal Handle

I spent 6 days on Lundy last year. 4G coverage was spotty, and only really reliable if you stood in the same place just near the pub, or at the top of the old lighthouse.

Getting to the Internet from anywhere other than near the main "settlement" was a hit and miss affair, more so at the bottom of Devil's Slide or similar on the western side of the island but by then I had other things on my mind!

Lamborghini's last remaining pure gas guzzlers are all spoken for

Unoriginal Handle

All well and good if there are charging points to plug into, but if there's no charging coming out of them because the real back end infrastructure isn't there - power stations - then it's a moot point?

Military helicopter crash blamed on failure to apply software patch

Unoriginal Handle

Some slight clarifications...

Yes it's very likely hotter on the ground than in the air, but there is almost always some wind. A prudent turbine helicopter pilot will leave the helicopter parked into the wind, or where they think the wind will be coming from when they next go to start up. That way, there's a flow of air already into the compressor and thence the combustion chamber reducing the amount of work the engine has to do to get going and reducing the chances of a hot start. And the helicopter manual details time restrictions and temperature limits between last shut down, and what the max temperature is at the time you next go to start it up.

"Full power is normally applied at start up". Not in my experience, but this may be semantics. In a Jet Ranger the throttle is kept closed until the electric starter motor has wound the thing up to a certain speed (12-15% IIRC) then fuel is introduced by moving the throttle to the idle stop, with the starter button kept depressed until the whole thing is self sustaining. Full power - or at least the power required to get into a hover then transition to forward flight - is only used when you actually want to leave the ground, and just before this stage the throttle has been gently opened to get the rotor blades to flight RPM, then the collective is raised - adds fuel to counteract increased drag and temperatures then go up accordingly.

Meet the merry pranksters who keep the workplace interesting, if not productive

Unoriginal Handle

Two spring to mind.

Taking flatpack cardboard boxes, unflatenning them and making a wall out of them in my boss' office so he had to dismantle it to get in.

Watching the Teutonic contingent at a company work summit all walk in together to the hotel/conference centre's auditorium, take up a row of seats, then socialise together making no attempt to mingle for the next two days. Each morning - same row of seats... Day 3, they walked in to the auditorium to find someone had asked the hotel's housekeeping for hand towels which had been draped over the row of seats they'd occupied the other two days. A moment of bemusement, then they sat down. Much amusement among the other EMEA attendees ...

Tesla driver blames full-self-driving software for eight-car Thanksgiving Day pile up

Unoriginal Handle

Re: What is the scope of FSD?

"Surely (assuming more or less constant speed) the only way of increasing the gap in front of you is by slowing down gently, making the distinction between the two purely semantic?"

Yes, temporarily, and it doesn't need to be by a huge amount - so the gap between you and the car in front gets bigger. Then you can add the 2mph or whatever it takes to match the vehicle in front.

Unoriginal Handle

Re: What is the scope of FSD?

I'd be interested in the source of that comment. As a current RoSPA ROADAR tutor I've not heard it said.

I would advocate, as another poster has said, increasing the gap in front of you (significantly) to cater for the vehicle behind if they're showing signs of impatience or being too close or some other thing. And if they want to overtake, let them.

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Human Versus AI Drivers

"it's even in the UK highway code" but most drivers don't read it after they pass their driving test and couldn't tell you accurately what's in it now.

There are about 43,000 road deaths in the US annually. In the UK, 1700. 330 million versus 67, give or take. If I have my maths right, if the UK figure translated to a US population size then that would be about 8,300 US road deaths - one fifth of the current toll. The standard of driving has to have an impact on that number.

Driving isn't brilliant in the UK - I've taken my continued driving education well beyond what most people think would think is rational so I have a rough idea - but 5 times fewer deaths adjusted for population?

As for "Full Self Driving" - human drivers, even given all their frailties, have a much higher intuitive awareness of their surroundings. All they now need to do is to concentrate fully and properly on the task of managing a significant chunk of metal driving down the road, plan quite a bit more ahead, and the road death toll would come down in the UK.

Server broke because it was invisibly designed to break

Unoriginal Handle

Re: The hell that

"On the plus side though it gives the janitor something different to mop up....."


Many years ago (early 80s) the gentleman at a bed manufacturer who, having presented flowers to the lady who jilted him a few days before proceeded to the factory floor, defeated the interlocks on the machine which turned coconut husks into matting for mattresses and put himself in.

The largest piece of him which was found was about 3/4 of a hand...and ruined a large length of mattress component.

Microwaved fish could help scientists create sustainable LEDs

Unoriginal Handle

Most likely accidental.

"Who left this luminescent salmon too long in the lab kitchen microwave?"

We can bend the laws of physics for your super-yacht, but we can't break them

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Sat Comm

If the hookers are big enough to play rugby on, count me out.


Debugging source is even harder when you can't stop laughing at it

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Trust but verify...

A slight aside...

Colleague at a job a long time ago received a mistakenly addressed email from one brother to another, expressing in colourful terms the older brother's dismay at finding out his sibling had come out as gay.

When he replied, to let the sender know the missive hadn't reached its intended recipient, their firm's email filter rejected it due to the level of profanity contained, none of which my colleague had added to...

Real-time software? How about real-time patching?

Unoriginal Handle

Re: In before someone says Rust would have enforced memory safety

Nice thought. Except Rust appeared in 2010, this story is set in the 1990s.

And the winning entry for the Jumper of Windows Past is...

Unoriginal Handle

I got a Windows Advent calendar. Opened one window, all the others opened by themselves.

And a few minutes later they *all* closed of their own accord.

<with thanks to Gary Delaney - https://www.garydelaney.com/ )

Log4j and Omicron: Brothers in harm, mothers of invention

Unoriginal Handle

Re: log4j

Here's a three liner:

1. Identify systems in your environment - and prioritise Internet-facing ones - which are using Log4j.

2. Check traffic to and from those systems, and allow only communication to and from trusted IPs

3. Block outbound connectivity to LDAP and RMI-IIOP services (port if you have to, application-based of you have a new-fangled application-aware firewall).

4. (Spanish inquisition time...) Change Log4j config to mitigate the threat, or upgrade...

Server errors plague app used by Tesla drivers to unlock their MuskMobiles

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Tesla


Engineers' Laurel and Hardy moment caused British Airways 787 to take an accidental knee

Unoriginal Handle

Re: The engineer's careers

They may not, but it's happened at least twice ( US, 2018, from the report ) so two sets of engineers...

Others may make the same mistake in the future if the little plastic insert isn't fitted by the date required by the AD.

Hubble Space Telescope may now depend on a computer that hasn't booted since 2009

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Shuttle!

Is that because it'll reflect the heat of re-entry?

Mine's the one with the book about reentry physics with a missing page

Poltergeist attack could leave autonomous vehicles blind to obstacles – or haunt them with new ones

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Automation

"many incidents weren’t the result of lack of braking capacity in the vehicle, but lack of brake pressure applied."

The overwhelming majority of car crashes are the results of decisions or the lack of well before the brake pedal is applied, however firmly.

The only way the human driver will be given an incentive to improve their own skills is if it saves them money - which in essence is insurance companies giving discounts for decent ongoing driver training a la RoSPA ROADAR or IAM schemes (these are int he UK, I'm not aware of anything else similar elsewhere in the world).

I can see the logic - sort of - from the car manufacturers' points of view. "Let's eliminate the things which cause cars to come together, like not braking in time, crossing lanes, not looking properly into blind spots". The problem is that those speccing the systems to do this are probably in the same boat as other drivers in that the passed their tests many years ago and haven't had any standards checks since then.

I say this as someone who's a tutor for the local RoADAR group and sees a ex-police advanced driving instructor at least yearly to make sure I'm still up to scratch. And before anyone passes me a pork pie hat and some string back gloves you'd need to drive with me first to see if that particular stereotype fits.

Stealthy Linux backdoor malware spotted after three years of minding your business

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Pretty stupid port number

You wouldn't. The C2C server is listening on port 443, but *not* using SSL/TLS to encrypt services.

The backdoored machine may be running a web server but it's talking *outbound*. Destination port = 443, source port on the victim something completely different.

Known software issue grounds Ingenuity Mars copter as it attempted fourth flight

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Did....

OTA ? Through a vacuum?


39 Post Office convictions quashed after Fujitsu evidence about Horizon IT platform called into question

Unoriginal Handle

Therium funded the litigation against the Post Office, and its probable that without that, the good work of all involved in bringing it to light wouldn't have succeeded as it has.

Therium fund stuff like this for a profit, so it's them who got the bulk of the initial settlement. I'm not keen on it, but I'm happy to be enlightened on any other way the appeal could have been funded.


iPhone XR caught fire after getting trapped in airline passenger's seat

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Clumsy while sleeping

From the AAIB report - "One of the cabin crew asked the passenger if she could stow the bedding whilst the passenger was away from her seat", as the aircraft was in the last 40 minutes of the flight, starting to secure the aircraft for the descent and landing.

Brit authorities could legally do an FBI and scrub malware from compromised boxen without your knowledge

Unoriginal Handle

Not quite. They're prosecuted for burglary, which has no monetary value attached to it.

And the monetary losses are, from my dim and distant memories as a probationer constable in the late 80s, subsidiary to the emotional distress caused by knowing a complete stranger has had free rein in your castle.

https://www.cps.gov.uk/legal-guidance/theft-act-offences#:~:text=Section%209%20of%20the%201968,to%20inflict%20grievous%20bodily%20harm refers.

Won't somebody please think of the children!!! UK to mount fresh assault on end-to-end encryption in Facebook

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Bore Da, Maidin Mhaith

I'll plump for Navajo..

Prince Philip, inadvertent father of the Computer Misuse Act, dies aged 99

Unoriginal Handle

Re: No TV

"Just wondering since I can't quite remember where I left mine about 50 years ago"

Was talking with a new girlfriend once about where and when we'd lost our respective virginities.

After I told my story, she said "I can't exactly remember where or when it was, but I've still got the box it came in."

And yes, I am leaving so soon...

Airline software super-bug: Flight loads miscalculated because women using 'Miss' were treated as children

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Not necessarily.

"I'm curious why a bush pilot in Aus would use pounds?"

As the previous poster said, aviation - especially if flying an American designed light aircraft, uses a whole load of different units. Pounds for weight, inches for centre of gravity datums, potentially US gallons for fuel quantities. And the units used are specified in the aircraft manual which is a legal document so everything needs to be converted back to those units to make sure you're not over the max weight and the CG is within limits.

So you have to convert your USG fuel required into UK G or litres - and the potential for weight-affecting errors just here is massive if you're not on the ball as it's not volume you need, it's the actual weight...

Atheists warn followers of unholy data leak, hint dark deeds may have tried to make it go away

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Americans and Religion

Heretic atheists. Who'd have thought!

Apple iOS 14.5 will hide Safari users' IP addresses from Google's Safe Browsing

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Proxying

Well yes they're MITM. But unless they stick a cert on my device they're not going to see anything useful beyond the first few packets of metadata as it's all pretty much encrypted.

And even if I was dumb enough to allow Apple to decrypt my data, cert pinning, client certs and the like knock a whole lot of other stuff out for the potential decryptor.

The Linux box that runs the exec carpark gate is down! A chance for PostgreSQL Man to show his quality

Unoriginal Handle

Worked for an ISP many years ago. Was involved with auditing user accounts and configs on sensitive switches and routers which controlled a fair chunk of the ISPs and their customers connectivity.

On being told I was made redundant, I handed the SecurID fob in to a senior colleague the same day, and got an email confirmation from them to confirm. No way I was going to open myself up to all sorts of problems if there were problems.

My foreign manager, on the other hand, is a completely different story and couldn't understand why I wouldn't fly to Europe for a few days, in my consultation period, when I had job interviews lined up...

Accused murderer wins right to check source code of DNA testing kit used by police

Unoriginal Handle

It's not just DNA - breathalysers too...

In the past, Draeger breathalysers / intoximeters have had their accuracy questioned.

Start at https://www.zdnet.com/article/draeger-breathalyzer-breath-test-convictions/ for an idea of the problem.

A 1970s magic trick: Take a card, any card, out of the deck and watch the IBM System/370 plunge into a death spiral

Unoriginal Handle

Early 80s. University somewhere. Either under Ultrix on the old PDP/11 or the shiny new Vax 8600, likewise with Ultrix. But no per-user process limits...

Me, in my tinkering, had a shell script ( probably Bourne but who cares, and it doesn't matter ) which forked another background shell or copy of itself, slept for 5 seconds, then repeated.

When other users sat at terminals in the room with all the consoles started expressing confusion as to why they couldn't do anything I went off and sought the advice of one of the post-grad system admins. Who had to resort to rebooting the whole kit and caboodle to resolve the problem, and /I don't know how much of other peoples' work I lost.

Sorry, all...

There are two sides to every story, two ends to every cable

Unoriginal Handle

Obligatory Dilbert . . .


Who knew that hosing a table with copious amounts of cubic metres would trip adult filters?

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Over sensitive company intranet

If you'd like a double entendre, I could give you one? As the bishop said to the actress...

Unoriginal Handle

Or Wetwang ? https://goo.gl/maps/oTQRS1g3f2nBq7rf6

It's always DNS, especially when a sysadmin makes a hash of their semicolons

Unoriginal Handle

Double quotes, versus single quotes, versus Microsoft "smart" quotes...that took a while to find.

Panic in the mailroom: The perils of an operating system too smart for its own good

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Computerized billing ...

On my honeymoon in 1991, driving through the French countryside near Darois (I think). Saw a sign pointing to the CAP aircraft factory. Knocked on the door and got a tour, seeing the raw materials (piles of wood) being turned into aircraft in stages. It appealed because at the time I'd just completed a PPL(A).

Got told to go to the nearby airfield the day after and look at the actual finished product. No trip in one, but seeing the transformation of the raw material to a finished aerobatic aircraft ticked my geek boxes...

Palo Alto Networks threatens to sue security startup for comparison review, says it breaks software EULA

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Is that Barbara Streisand I hear in the background?

Actually that search only lists 137 vulns. The full list is at https://security.paloaltonetworks.com

Beware, drone fliers, of Scotland's black-headed gulls. For they will tear your craft from Mother Nature's skies

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Once upon and Lands End...

"Winged pirates" ? Indeed, they arrrrrr....

You there. Person, corp, state. Doesn't matter. You better not shoot down or hack a drone. That's our job – US govt

Unoriginal Handle

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CzURm7OpAA - how to stop a pervy kid taking pictures into bedrooms. Might fall foul of this lot, but it's a fun watch.

Oh what a feeling: New Toyotas will upload data to AWS to help create custom insurance premiums based on driver behaviour

Unoriginal Handle

The biggest gripe I've got with any sort of telematics which sends driving-related data to anyone, including insurance companies, is not the data itself but the poor interpretation.

Anyone who's done some sort of advanced driver training ( most likely in the UK, I've not seen it very prevalent else where) of the likes of IAM or RoSPA's ROADAR scheme ( https://www.iamroadsmart.com/ or https://www.roadar.org.uk/ ) will drive considerably differently than anyone else, and safer. That doesn't preclude firmer braking or harder acceleration, but both those activities would be pinged by

And a friend was hit by a young driver with telematics - he was too fast round a bend on a country round and while she stopped in a few feet, his marks were measured at about 45 yards. Telematics don't make things safer at the time, they tell you after the fact (or possibly not - what's too fast on a 60 mph piece of road where in reality 25-30mph is the top safe speed in the case above).

The way to better safer driving is to give the human the skills and the attitudes to deal adequately with anything the road might throw at them, and the only way to do that is to offer good insurance discounts for people with a demonstrated desire to improve their driving. But that's not going to happen unless it's mandated, so I'll keep my as-little-computerised-as-possible car off the Internet and drive it in the way I've been trained, and out of the way of everyone else out there who's not.

Are you sitting comfortably? Then we'll begin. Hang on, the PDP 11/70 has dropped offline

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Front panels and security keys...

Key-related topic drift...

I worked in the Newbury offices of Cabletron, and we had a lab with all sorts of kit in it to simulate a network for the Spectrum software my team and I was supporting. We kept the lab locked because kit would be raided for urgent customer requirements ( i.e. rapid replacement of broken kit on site). But the key sometimes took a while to come back or we'd havr to go and find it.

Until the day the 8 x 4 metal door sign with "Lab" on it no longer stuck properly. So I used a split ring to attach the key to the sign, and funnily enough the key was always promptly returned from then on.

No Wiggle room: Two weeks after angry bike shop customers report mystery orders on their accounts, firm confirms payment cards delinked

Unoriginal Handle

Re: At Chris G, re: Lycranthropist.

Cellophane? Surely wouldn't his thighs have stuck together?

You can't have it both ways: Anti-coronavirus masks may thwart our creepy face-recog cameras, London cops admit

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Lookie likey

I thought we had to use the terms "thinking challenged" or "thinking deficient"...

Cyber attack against UK power grid middleman Elexon sparks in-house IT recovery efforts

Unoriginal Handle

If they are going to pay the ransom, why not pay in electricity, rather than directly in bitcoin ? After all, they know where the electricity is and how to get hold of it :)

Mine's the coat with the multimeter in the pocket.

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

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Windows Server 2000

"Reboot every 42 days" - so *that's* the answer!

We regret to inform you there are severe delays on the token ring due to IT nerds blasting each other to bloody chunks

Unoriginal Handle

In my first IT job (WH Pitt / Signal Limited) in the early/mid 09s I worked on ICL DRS300 running CCPMs. Never realised there were games for it !

Instagram influencer fools followers into thinking Ikea photoshoot was Bali holiday

Unoriginal Handle

Re: Ah!

I temporarily misread that as "AI! The stupoidity which keeps on giving"...

Tech can endure the most inhospitable environments: Space, underwater, down t'pit... even hairdressers

Unoriginal Handle

It's been going on for centuries...


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

Unoriginal Handle

Re: I've had my share.

My turn to be geek.

Kiowa - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bell_OH-58_Kiowa

or Apache Longbow - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AgustaWestland_Apache