* Posts by pavel.petrman

232 posts • joined 23 Mar 2017


It's heeere: Node.js 17 is out – but not for production use, says dev team


Re: Finally a true cross platform environment

No, I did not, i really mean that. Of course languages, runtimes and systems are a matter of religious belief to many people, just like automotive propulsion modi, data slurping endpoint brands and so on. But to the ordinary guy who has been doing ordinary software development as a 9-5 job for the last 20 years and just wants to get the job done without clinging on the bright past long gone, the javascript ecosystem of today is the first really portable all-purpose all-in-one tool which gets the job done quickly and with acceptable reliability. It's actually very easy not to get caught in a "unpublish leftpad" affair (and other platforms got their share of sour surprises, too).

Again, this is a pracitcal, not a religious view. Very meny people are heavily invested in hating JS since the early days of its peak hateability, I hated it too. And of course it's very easy to find a stick if you want to beat a dog, no real christian would hammer a nail with a cross, and no C++09 hard liner would ever admit they made the website for their father-in-law in PHP because that is what gets the job done and is most widely supported by hosting companies. Religion is one thing, practicality quite another thing, and practicality is where the JS world have been improving steadily and faster than others.


Finally a true cross platform environment

A bit like 8086, a niche thing hacked together on the side of bigger shinier things, Javascript has outlived and outperformed its original purpose by several orders of magnitude. After many rigorously architected and robustly developed cross-platform programming environments (Java, .Net, Qt..., all of which are very nice in their own right, yet tend to miss one or two crucial environments in their portability lists) the most unlikely and uniersally hated candidate takes the throne. Today, Javascript is everywhere, on every user-facing OS, on every cloud platform, available headless on every major OS. And on a PC, quite interestingly, everyone gets a live scripting environment in the form of the bworser console, where one can actually program something - we users actually didn't have that luxury since the commonplace basic environment became obsolete as cheap data media replaced the need to type programs from listings printed in magazines. Sure, there has always been some ersatz, like bash or VBScript on Windows, but compared to the portability of JS and ease of use with Node, they were no match.

The language is different from what a common dev guy is used to (some time ago most devs were confused by the difference between prototypes and classes, and being used to the latter found the former difficult, stupid, incomprehensible) but quite powerful and very productive, once one understands how to use _not holding it wrong_.

I, for one, am thankful to those Apple and Google guys for giving us the V8 and to Node folks for giving us the thing we needed and wanted so badly, albeit in the form of a patched up thirty year old weekend project of one guy from Netscape. History shows us that quirky yet stubborn enthusiasm tends to win over thorough planning and robust execution.

Computer scientists at University of Edinburgh contemplate courses without 'Alice' and 'Bob'


Re "The idea behind it"

I am very much puzzled, because they say they want to have a hard look at _what_ they teach, not _how_ they teach it. Leaves considerable room for their decolonisation, if you ask me.

Oops, they did it again – rogue Soyuz spurt gave ISS an attitude problem


Re: Previous Incident

It's not 45 degrees, it's 60,000? (Mine is the white one with a dosimeter.)

Devuan debuts version 4.0 – as usual without a hint of the hated systemd


Devuan is the Firefox of the OS world

As with the Web and more generally Internet being usurped by Google, the OS world is more and more contaminated by systemd (frankly I wouldn't be much surprised to find it in Windows 12 or XER or whatever number follows the looming 11). If both keep their trajectory for a few more years, we'll soon be reading about changes to the ad-blocking api of systemd browser module. That is if our Dell E5220s and Thinkpad X201s will not have given up the silicon ghost by then.

.NET Foundation admits it 'violated the trust of project maintainers'


Anyone sees an apology anywhere?

"This move was a mistake," he wrote. "The board deeply regrets that this happened." - Nothing about being sorry, nothing about "we did" anything.

"The .NET Foundation violated the trust of project maintainers because they were under the impression.." - All their fault, no?

I get it, Microsoft owns the house now, people should have reat the TOS's, yes, yes yes... But as long as we call these above mentioned utterances apologies, there will be no real apologies, and more importantly no incentive to act decently.

Kudos to Microsoft, though, for pledging not to cock up in this particular way again. Future will show what the pledge is worth.

The planet survived six hours without Facebook. Let's make it longer next time


Think what would happen if Google had a total service outage like that

Oh what a blessing that would be. The ignorant masses would at long last understand the immense portion of their lives now belonging to one company, and the rest would be able to open a web page in their browser without an octacore processor maxing out under the load of Google's bloatware present in all but few web pages.

Happy birthday, Microsoft Money: Here's a cashpoint calamity for Windows and .NET


Interesting that you should mention the 300 milliseconds - it's a very important time interval, it seems, in brain processiong and recognition. Presenting a sound linked to an event older than 300 ms puts a strain on one brain's processes and leads to all sorts of complicated distraction and unnecessary cognition responses. In other words, it not only brings no positive effect, it's distracting in most unfortunate way, when one should be concentrated and oriented in their dealings. Shame the ATM people have no idea about it.

If you're interested in this topic, search for "event related potentials", "P300" and "bci" (or brain-computer interface). While it was very interesting to do my bachelor thesis on early cognition and detection of remembered images, to this day I envy those whose research concentrated on measuring the influence of blood levels of alcohol on one's brainwaves. They seemed much more enthusiastic about their, ahem, measurements.

.NET Foundation boss apologizes for pull request that sparked community row


Re: What a shame

This is a really good point! I've always felt uneasy about these so called apologies, now I understand why. Just like "Your privacy is important to us" (so that we can sell it). Everyone wants your good and it's increasingly difficult to make sure it's not taken away from us.


What a shame

One more ham fisted step to sour the pool for everyone. The open-source initiative by Microsoft looked like a step in a publicly acceptable direction, but long term benevolent money-making in IT seems an impossible feat for big companies.

These actions tend to be remembered for a long time (mainy because more often then not their perpetrators act as if they apologised when they in fact had not and almost never rectify their actions or at least pretend to) but somehow can't seem to present a lesson to others. Monica Celio case at Stack Overflow, the slow but frustrating progress towards alienating the open source community by the Qt company, and so on and on.

Generally there is always a choice, but quite often the choice is between the likes of Novotny and the likes of Stallman. On a morning like his I feel I need to refresh my gardening skills :(

Things that are not PogChamp: Amazon's Twitch has its source code, streamer payout data leaked


Re: Waiting...

Security is the number one priority right until the moment user privacy or some other cost centre will become their number one priority. I'm sure you all know what I mean.

User to chatbot: Help! My kid has COVID! Chatbot to user: Always wear a condom


Re: Boris to launch new health chatbot for England

This reminds me of: Voice recognition technology? In a lift? In Scotland?!

Windows 11 in detail: Incremental upgrade spoilt by onerous system requirements and usability mis-steps


Re usability mis-steps

The whole Windows 10 is one huge usability misstep. If Windows 11 is comparably worse, it's going to be a nightmare for those of us who are wed to Windows in our jobs and have not yet mastered PowerShell for all system management tasks, even the most basic ones.

Does anyone remember those jokes about the airplane seats and a screwdriver? I've been quite happy with default-set KDE Plasma recently. Oh the irony, today one get everything one needs pre-installed on a Linux desktop whereas on Windows one has to install a number of shell extensions and tweaks to make the UI at least decently workable (Launchy, PowerToys, Open Shell and so on and on).

As Google sets burial date for legacy Chrome Extensions, fears for ad-blockers grow


Re: Confused..

There is a tiny silver linig to all this - Google folks seem to have learnt from their Rockefellers to keep token competition alive (indeed Firefox gets its development money from preinstalled prefered search engine) so as to be able to defend against accusations of monopolistic practice. They have a real business need to keep alternatives alive and the three second's worth of revenue lost on this front doesn't seem to hurt them all that much.


Re: Upgrade...

I'd add uMatrix to your list. Though it's workable only for people who understand the inner workings of 'Web pages and apps (and thou it can seriously annoy a layman, it at least show huw much crap is being loaded with every commercial webpage).

Autonomy founder Lynch scores extradition decision delay as Home Sec ponders sending him to US


There is a saying...

... that the western way to deal with a disaster of whatever sort is to find a hero and glorify him whereas the eastern way is to find a culprit at any cost and punishhim exemplarily. This case in question is but one example of a long line of affairs exemplifying that the political longitudes are shifting at least as quickly as the geomagnetic north pole.

iFixit prises open the iPhone 13 Pro, claims 'any display replacement knocks out Face ID'


Re: Not tied to the phone... but...

Greed indeed. On the other hand, it makes no sense anymore to steal a locked iphone, as no one will buy it for parts. Cars have been like this for decades* and no loud cries of despair are to be heard.

* As far as I recall, Renault pioneered this in Europe, with the stereo+navigation unit in the last good Espace was indeed no unit but a scattering of devices hidden all across the vehicle, all paired to others and useless when disconnected from the car network. Whereas VW kept theirs packed as one unit in the dashboard, which made the owners of passats, superbs and exeos easy prey and numerous a victim to auto break-in.


Re: Daft idea....

Iphones up to the 6s and 7s were quite repairable. Much more so than their contemporaries of the xperia. htc and other sorts. Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to unhitch my Dell 5520 from its docking station in order to swap its cpu, memory, hard drive, battery, lte modem...

One-size-fits-all chargers? What a great idea! Of course Apple would hate it


Re: Re "a spokesperson for Apple told The Reg"

Thank you for kindly pointing it out.


Re "a spokesperson for Apple told The Reg"

I had to check my calendar. For a minute there I tought it's a subtle April Fools Day joke.

Apple warns of arbitrary code execution zero-day being actively exploited on Macs


Last paragraph missing?

You know, the one about asking Apple for comment. I always read the last paragraph about Apple. A rare source of rock solid stability in these turbulent times.

Tick, tick, tick … TikTok China just limited kids to 40 minutes' use each day


Re: An infinite game of whack a mole.

This illustrates nicely the naivety with which totalitarian regimes are regarded by people who have no first hand experience with said regimes. A "My dear, why don't you just vote off those communists?" type of understanding.

How do you fix a problem like open-source security? Google has an idea, though constraints may not go down well


Especially from the likes of Google, who very much like to take and are much more hesitant to give. See Chromium vs Chrome or the OSS Android Base. All in all as bare shells as legally possible to contain all the license requirements and stop them from actually working as intended, and first after you've done that, slap all the sweet sweet money making icing on top of that.

Ring, Ring, why don't you give me a call? Amazon-owned doorbells aren’t answering after large-scale outage


Re: Ring Still Not Ringing

I do hope you and others have taken the hint!

Oh, no one knows what goes on behind locked doors... so don't leave your UPS in there


re "management declined to take the risk"

Oh, what a soul-soothing thing to read. Especially so when the root cause of so many of these Monday and Friday stories is penny pinching and inept bean counters at the helm.

TikTok given another week to sort out how to sell itself


I'd settle for same, but alas, if recent history taught us anything, it would be that the most important thing is not what is being done but _who_ does it. Remember NSA, Five Eyes, legality of Britain's illegal invasive CCTVing and wiretapping, Juniper et al's backdoor policy versus Huawei, and so on and on? The only good thing about the switch from Trump to Biden is that Biden doesn't seem to be so hell bent on the us-vs-them with China as Trump is.

China compromised F-35 subcontractor and forced expensive software system rewrite, academic tells MPs


Imagine the mayhem...

.. in F-35's software development effort if China somehow managed to unpublish Left-Pad.

Google's plan to make User-Agent string even less useful breaks our device detection tech, says NetMarketShare


I suggest a rename...

Not-so-generic Browser Fingerprhints.

Just cough into your phone, please... MIT lab thinks it can diagnose COVID-19 from the way you expectorate


Re: Expectorate! Expectorate!

- Why don't they just say spit?

- Do you want them to save time?


Re: "...from the way you expectorate"

Expectorate Patronum!

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?


Yes, he explained it to me in similar terms (not only are the sockets expected to be live at all times, there was, too, no switch available for this purpose, as no manufacturer would test and sell a switch for a type of operation which is not permitted by regulation). He further explained the importance of standard and as-expected behaviour of home electrical appliances. We finally managed to arrive at a legal, workable and overall sensible solution, but it was no easy feat. I wish I had the option to just put some switch-equipped sockets - of course, only where I want them, keeping the rest as it is. Coming to think of it, instead of a kitchen isle I wish I had built a British isle. See icon.


I believe this sort of thing is inevitable when you are the first (tribe/group/unit/army/nation...) to introduce something without having the benefit of someone else already having tried it for you. Those typical British separate faucets for hot and cold water made perfect sense those hundred years ago when Britain introduced rules for going about with public water mains. Today they are a relic of a industrious past, but you can't quite get rid of them. Same with those funny German EC cards and many other examples. I, for one, find the socket switches a good idea. My certified electrician apparently does not, he resisted vigorously when I instructed him I wanted my sockets for kitchen appliances switchable (I reside in the metric part of Europe where these are not mandatory).


Re: My favourite

We got to relive these time quite recently with the introduction of digital TV. At my grandma's, it was invariably either the digital receiver or the screen that was off, with my grandma fumbling, two remote control things in her hands.


Re: Sadly...

"IBM didn't charge for the callout" - those were the days...

Linux 5.10 to make Year 2038 problem the Year 2486 problem


Sigh... the K notation again.

Where thith the "aka Y2K38" come from? As is usual, when a nice and functional thing created by enigneers and used by engineers lands in the hands of laymen without two layers of protective insulation, cringeworthiness ensues. Just like, for example, the semantic version numbering (remember the 2.0 craze followed by current 4.0 folly?) or the Internet itself, the order-letter notation (or does it have an actual name?) used to great advantage by engineers somehow leaked to the instagram-using youth for whom the letter K seemed to work much better than the digit 0. I couldn't care less if they kept it using just for amusement, but it came the full circle somehow and now whenever I see the letter K on the significatn position, especially following the digit 2, I must ask explicitly whether it really mans K or is just a fancy zero. Otherwise I can't be sure whether the value is 2038 (cool new instagram number format) or 2380, which it had meant for sveral decades before instagram ruining it. Fuc0 it, people, Y2K was not Y2K00!

Quick thinking and an explanation for everything – key CTO qualities


Thsi story reminds me of ...

... that bloke fined (or was he actually sentenced) in Singapore or thereabouts for playing an adult video while stuck in a traffic jam on his way to the airport. The authorities had no problem with him watchting his favourite bag - they had a problem, though, with hundreds of other people watching it, as that hack was so bored he actually broke into a giant advertisement screen on the screen next to where his taxi was, erm, taking its stand, and played the PH stream there for everyone to see. The guy had, too, been staying in hotels, prior to said incident.

BOFH: Rome, I have been thy soldier 40 years... give me a staff of honour for mine age


Re: Re alike

More like open windows, in this case...


Re alike

I've heard multiple times that when you have a very specific engineering goal to achieve (like, say, supersonic airliner) and give it to multiple disparate teams, if they succeed at all they inevitably arrive at very similar solutions.

Five Eyes nations plus Japan, India call for Big Tech to bake backdoors into everything


Re: Nope.

We, the undersigned, declare we haven't got the faintest idea what encryption is...

Bill Gates lays out a three-point plan to rid the world of COVID-19 – and anti-vaxxer cranks aren't gonna like it


Re: If Bill Gates has the technology to implant chips to control people's behavior

With the obligatory 640 kB of memory!

Proposed US fix for Boeing 737 Max software woes does not address Ethiopian crash scenario, UK pilot union warns


Three miles? I'll land.

Ethernet failure on Swiss business jet prompted emergency descent, say aviation safety bods


Re: Destination Host Unreachable

This will never grow old!

Android 11 lands with plenty more privacy preferences for Pixels and special Google friends first


Re: carrying two phones

I for one see carrying two contemporary smartphones as no nuisance at all: when I first applied for a job one would have to carry a briefcase with a sleek Thinkpad, thick ADK, a huuge brick phone (private cellphones just got to that somewhat affordable price range), a Sony walkman or discman, let alone a compact camera with at least three rolls of Kodak to get through the day with enough material for ... well there was no Instagram back then so no reason to take a snap of every trivial bit one would set an eye upon throughout the day. And a reel of CAT5 for the rare opportunity of getting some Internets for free.

Two flat, slim, lightweight all-in-one tools is a lottery jackpot in comparison. Coming to think about it, how about the employer supplying one half of a folding Samsung and the employee buying the other one?


Plenty more privacy preferences...

... many of which to be found sooner or later completely ignored by the OS, like so many times before.

COVID-19 tracing without an app? There's an iOS and Android update for that


Future of this

If I were to be optimistic, I would like to think that Covid gives us the right opportunity to rethink our attitude towards anonymity, personal responsibility towards society and our general attitude towards sharing our personal data where it matters and where it does not.

My experience with general populace makes me a bitter pessimist, though. This looks good on the surface but I don't like where it leads. It gives the incentive for keeping the perceived Covid thread alive long after the real threat will have been dealt with. Remind me again, are we still at war with Eurasia?

CenturyLink L3 outage knocks out web giants and 3.5% of all internet traffic



I haven't been looking into that topic for some time now, but I remember a few years ago (when I was adding a second IPv4 Internet uplink connection to my home router) that the area of multiple-uplink endpoints remained a gray, contested area in the IPv6 world, and the solution at that time was that everyone with more than one Internet connection should start BGPing (I remember the blog post I read about this being strongly against the idea but stating that there are not many other viable options in this particular scenario). Has anyone here any understanding of current situation? I know that there are not many consumer level endpoints with this problem, but even a small number of private homes and/or small businesses trying to increase the reliability of their Internet connection may wreac havoc by advertising themselves wrongly and occasionally not getting filtered out upstream.

Sun welcomes vampire dating website company: Arrgh! No! It burns! It buuurrrrnsss!


Re: Monkey on my back

Yesterday I managed to step on a stripe of new Molex MIni-Fits. The hollow ones proved quite harmless, whereas the spiky ones, well, not nice at all.

You *bang* will never *smash* humiliate me *whack* in front of *clang* the teen computer whizz *crunch* EVER AGAIN



The family clearly had their own blinkenlights before they had a computer! Cheers to forward thinking...

What legacy is IBM really shooting for? Cheating its own salespeople out of millions? Here we go again, allegedly



It looks to me that when one works for IBM one should save up for a lawyer instead of pension. Does the USA tax system contain a provision to deduce this from your tax?



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