* Posts by vtcodger

1210 posts • joined 13 Sep 2017


Samsung is planning to reverse-engineer the human brain on to a chip

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Really?

Upvoted because you clarified some things I wondered about.

I agree that it's seemingly not really what is claimed. But it sounds like an interesting project none the less. Probably things will be learned. How do they plan to "train" the thing? It's not like humans pop out of the womb equipped to discuss philosophy or quantum mechanics. We need a few years of preparation.

My one quibble is your first paragraph. Animals may not "have language" whatever the heck that means. But many are quite effective communicators. Dogs, for example, manage to convey their desires and opinions far better than many humans. And most understand the limited components of human speech that are of interest to them. That portion involving food, walks, etc. They do not seem to give a damn about climate change, Brexit, or whether the 2020 presidential election was stolen from Donald Trump. Makes them pretty bright in my book.

Microsoft Exchange Autodiscover protocol found leaking hundreds of thousands of credentials

vtcodger Silver badge

"MS has known their software is security swiss-cheese since the mid 1990's"

My memory isn't all that great. But I'm 99% sure that MS told us all in the late 1990s that NT based Windows would fix all those problems just as soon as they got it perfected. You suggesting that they lied to us?

Amazon says Elon Musk's wicked, wicked ways mean SpaceX's Starlink 2.0 should not be allowed to fly

vtcodger Silver badge

Space is BIG and satellites aren't

The concern about collisions between satellites is understandable, but very likely largely unwarranted. Even if humanity ends up with 100,000 communication satellites zipping around in Low Earth orbit, that is only a small fraction of the amount of junk already up there. It is estimated that there are in excess of 500,000 sand to small pebble (1-10 mm) objects "flying" around up there. Since closing velocities between orbiting stuff are potentially very high -- if things want to stay in orbit, they have to move very fast -- roughly 8km/s -- even small objects are potentially capable of punching right through anything they hit. Since that does not seem to happen very often, I expect that satellite collisions will be quite rare. If collisions do turn out to be an issue, that can presumably be handled as it is with aircraft, by small, mandated, vertical separation.

(However, it possibly is important that only the satellite makes it to LEO and that any associated junk -- fittings discarded during deployment, etc -- returns toward Earth and burns up promptly in the atmophere.)

Miscreants fling booby-trapped Office files at victims, no patch yet, says Microsoft

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: "a Microsoft Office document that hosts the browser rendering engine"

Why on Earth would anyone want to do this? (Not a rhetorical question).

I've never been entirely clear on all the reasons for ActiveX, but when it was invented in the mid-1990s, it was a way to temporarily download capability from a website to do some job or other. It's still in use because some people/businesses see no reason to change something that is integrated into their processes, works just fine, and is either paid for, or is a known cost that is budgeted for.

We don't actually need it nowadays because we have have Javascript which is even more capable/dangerous and has the advantage from the malware author POV of being likely to run under any OS, not just Windows.

Kim Kardashian and Big Tech slapped for spruiking craptocurrency – and holding back useful crypto

vtcodger Silver badge

Good news and bad

Now, how much did you agree to pay me to say that?

The Good News:

You will be paid

The Bad News:

The payment will be in a cryptocurrency called Badcoin which is currently trading at $0.02 asked, nothing bid.

The fee to convert your 100 Badcoin payment to US dollars will likely be around $35.

GitHub merges 'useless garbage' says Linus Torvalds as new NTFS support added to Linux kernel 5.15

vtcodger Silver badge

Thanks to All

Thank you folks. All of you. I'd always assumed that my inability to grok git was due to my stupidity and perhaps a bit to a loss of mental accuity as I slog through my eighth decade on this planet. But you make it appear that perhaps part of the problem that git really is as obtuse and confusing as it seems to me. Thanks ever so much.

When the bits hit the fan: What to do when ransomware strikes

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Opportunity

Also keep in mind a good deal of the software businesses depend on is Windows only. Yes Open Office (or whatever we're calling it this month) works fine and even (I'm told) runs some Excel macros nowadays. And yes MS support for it's products is at times a bit wobbly. And their QA is rather ...ahem... problematic. But a lot of stuff -- likely including mission critical software isn't available for Unix and probably won't run under Wine without a daunting amount of tinkering. Unix is probably a non-starter for most businesses.

BTW, the finance folks who would probably need to approve the funding for the switchover often understand Excel macros and use a lot of them. All the time. They will surely be less than enthusiastic about a world without MS Office. And their managers won't be wild about a world without Power Point.

Now a new operation with no dependence on some sort of special software that everyone in their sector uses? THEY probably ought to seriously consider Linux for a lot of reasons -- including security.

China's biggest chipmaker to build colossal chip factory

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Colossal chip factory

So how large are these "colossal chips" - do we have an approved unit of measure?

Size: According to the article -- 12 inch equivalent (whatever that means).

Units: How about "Pizza Slices" or "Piz" for short? I reckon 12 inch equivalent might be about 6 Piz -- or not.

Software piracy pushes companies to be more competitive, study claims

vtcodger Silver badge

I favor competition

Hey, I'm in favor of competition. This looks like a relatively painless (to me) way to encourage it. Where do I sign up?

Lenovo pops up tips on its tablets. And by tips, Lenovo means: Unacceptable ads

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: You ain’t seen nothing yet

"What is the logical conclusion then by the advertisers? Show more ads, of course!"

Well, of course. If the ads aren't very effective, you need a lot of them, right?

Crypto-coin startup said its bot could generate huge profits from your Bitcoin. It was a scam, says SEC

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: This just makes me ...........

Rather than inventing something -- which might be a lot of work -- how about an NFT covering something of undeniable value -- the Gold purported to be stashed in Fort Knox? Or the Night Watch painting by Rembrandt (which, unlike the Fort Knox gold has actually been seen recently by reliable observers)?

But isn't the lack of ownership a problem? Of course not. This is the 21st Century. The digital age. We are no longer shacked by quaint, old-fashioned concepts such as ownership. Just conjure up that NFT and get out there and peddle it before our culture moves on to the next fad.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: "All investors had to do was hand over their Bitcoin..."

"It's like the Sharecropper Economy of Uber, Airbnb & Lyft. Having your sharecroppers shoulder all of the Capitalization and Operational burdens & risk while you just skim the cash flow is just great. For you."

Well, Yes. But the last I looked, Uber and Lyft have somehow been losing money hand over fist for years. One wonders how they accomplish that. Seems to me to be something that most folks would find difficult or impossible to do.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: I an offer

Dishonesty in the cryptocurrency sector? Who could possibly have anticipated that?

And while we're here. Isn't anyone the slightest bit interested in where the investor's money went? Personally, I think it will eventually be found in a hollow tree trunk on or near a property owned by one of the principals.

Imaginary numbers help AIs solve the very real problem of adversarial imagery

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: "a more 'terraced' or 'plateaued' landscape to explore"

So, you're suggesting that this is an imaginary solution?

Leaked Guntrader firearms data file shared. Worst case scenario? Criminals plot UK gun owners' home addresses in Google Earth

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Storage

My understanding is that only pest control firearms can be stored at home

Is there a rigorous definition of "pest". I'm sure that a large percentage of animal activists consider hunters to be pests.

And vice versa of course.

Microsoft does and doesn't want you to know it won't stop you manually installing Windows 11 on older PCs

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Crashes?

I guess I've been doing things with computer programs too long. I wrote my first computer program in 1961. But in my world view, kernels aren't supposed to crash -- ever.

To me 99.8% (99.8% of what pray tell?) sounds like an atrocious success rate. Assuming that it's a meaningful number, it should probably be orders of magnitude better before a product is allowed to ship. It seems to me a sad reflection on the state of the art of computing that a 0.2% (of what?) failure rate is postulated to be not only acceptable, but admirable.

No, I don't use Windows. I gave up on it two decades ago because it kind of sucked and I was tired of trying to deal with the lack of adequate technical documentation and the #$@^! Registry. Also, it seemed likely to me that competitive forces would cause MS to become far more user hostile than it was prior to 2000 -- which it has.

Machine learning data pipeline outfit Splice Machine files for insolvency

vtcodger Silver badge


I've read the article several times and I have not the slightest idea what Splice Machine does/did other than generate buzzword laden press releases and lose their investor's money -- perhaps as much as $56.5M of it. Would anyone care to enlighten me as to what an innovative "machine learning data pipeline" might be and what, if anything, it might possibly be good for?

Think you can solve the UK's electric vehicle charging point puzzle? The Ordnance Survey wants to hear about it

vtcodger Silver badge


Far more logical would be to use LPG

Liquid Propane will work -- on paper at least. And it should generate substantially fewer greenhouse gases than gasoline and diesel. I do wonder if modern computer driven ignitions are entirely compatible with LPG. I doubt anyone is likely to develop and certify new LPG capable hardware for older cars. Too small a customer base? And where is all the necessary Propane (and, in warmer climates Butane) going to come from? At what cost?

The other alternative is Compressed Natural Gas. It's apparently widely used in cars in Iran and Pakistan as well as a few specialized applications in other countries. I remember that the service manual for our 1998 Toyota Camry had an extensive section on the CNG version tucked away in the back.

Problems I'm aware of: Propane is heavier than air. Some tunnel and underground parking operations ban Propane because of its potential for pooling at the lowest levels of the structure. Oh yes, and Propane and CNG are probably more of a fire hazard in an accident than gasoline or diesel. And in really cold weather (-15C) Propane probably needs to be thawed -- at least I have had to throw Propane cylinders into a sink full of water a couple of times to get them to work.

vtcodger Silver badge

A Modest Proposal

The REAL challenge is not where to place the chargers, it's where on Earth to get all the extra electricity generation needed, and baseload rather than fickle wind and solar.

That's a correct albeit unpopular assessment.

So here's what you do ...

Put the effort to site and build charge points out for public bid. If you require the successful bidder to have actual experience in siting and provisioning charge points, very likely the only acceptable bid will be from Tesla. Will Elon bid? Almost for sure. The man has never seen a subsidy he didn't like. Can he do the job? Almost for sure he can. And since this is something his company has done reasonably well before, he'll probably do a good job.

But Musk is going to point out (as you have) that the chargers require adequate power. And I imagine he will suggest huge banks of solar panels and humongous backup batteries. All of which he can sell you.

But England is way too far North to power its transportation grid with solar energy especially in Winter? Of course it is. Any teenager who has mastered basic arithmetic and trigonometry can work that out in a few hours. But that's not Elon's problem. It's yours. It just means that you need a LOT of solar panels and an enormous number of batteries. And it'll cost a bloody fortune? You bet. Maybe you should have looked at the invoice for zero emissions before you signed on.

I'm not an Elon Musk fan BTW, but as I see it, he's the about only guy with any realistic chance of bailing you out of the mess your folks are creating. Like they say, "Any port in a storm."

What's the alternative? Nuclear power I suppose. But humanity has managed to dink around for half a century without coming up with an inexpensive, easily replicated, safe, nuclear reactor design that does not easily support nuclear proliferation. Perhaps you folks should consider holding off on saving the planet until you have a proper toolset?

GitHub's Copilot may steer you into dangerous waters about 40% of the time – study

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Sure it's shit 40% of the time...

If everyday language is precise, why are there 1.3 million lawyers in the US who spend a significant part of their time arguing about its meaning?

If you ask me (which no one will) automatic generation of useful code from everyday language is probably harder than autonomous driving on any road in any weather. And we all know how well THAT effort is going.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Copilot considered harmful

I know there have been a few problems in the past with automated assistants. But it's different this time I tell you -- DIFFERENT!!!

Tesla promises to build robot you could beat up – or beat in a race

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Is this a joke?

Well, a humaniform robot might be suitable for search and rescue, firefighting, stocking/fetching goods in a store with a diverse inventory with widely varying packaging, etc. But I have to think that in each case, a purpose built device with suitable attachments would likely be cheaper and more reliable.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Musk-Time

And while robots aren't totally immune to radiation damage, they are decidedly less fragile in many ways than real humans. Moreover, if things go badly, they are very unlikely to file a lawsuit re damages caused by their employer's callous disregard for worker safety.

However, that's probably a moot point as it is unlikely that Musk or anyone else will come up with a useful humaniform robot anytime soon. Consider that Tesla has been working on vehicle autonomy for a decade or so and so far all they have to show for the effort is an overhyped and none too reliable collision avoidance system, considerable bent metal, and a few dead bodies. Useful humaniform robots look to be a much more difficult problem. A problem for our great, great, ever so great grandkids most likely.

Senators urge US trade watchdog to look into whether Tesla may just be over-egging its Autopilot, FSD pudding

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Tesla seems to be protected

"Muck is a con man out of the Donald J Trump Univeristy of grift."

There are some similarities, but I think the Trumper probably knows he's lying whereas Musk very likely actually believes that he's only one modest breakthrough away from success. But that doesn't make Musk's advertising for "Autopilot" any less irresponsible. Long past time to shut this nonsense down.

... And while they are at it, ban Over The Air software updates to safety related systems for ALL car manufacturers BEFORE one tiny mistake kills or maims a bunch of folk.

US boffins: We're close to fusion ignition in the lab – as seen in stars and thermonuclear weapons

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Not that green...

"The surprising outcome is that the 'green' fusion reactors will be burying radioactive waste for generations."

Fusion reactors will generate radioactive waste. But purportedly few or none of the fairly long half-life heavy element fragments like Cs134, Cs137 and Sr90 that make nuclear waste from fission power such a nuisance. If you believe the glossy brochures, the principle radioactive in the fusion mix is Tritium which is a weak beta emitter with a half-life of 12 years. My impression is that the electrons (beta radiation) from Tritium decay are no more energetic than the the occasional electron that escapes from the tube of an old-fashioned CRT monitor or TV. But I could easily be wrong about that. Tritium does appear to be about the least harmful radioactive material one is likely to encounter in daily life which is why it has replaced Radium in glow-in-the-dark instruments.

And even if that's true, "they" could be misrepresenting the situation a bit since the premise here is that the reactor itself will likely be exposed continuously to lots of energetic neutrons. Of course those will be pacifist neutrons that work only for good and socially beneficial purposes ... Or so we're told.

Green hydrogen 'transitioning from a shed-based industry' says researcher as the UK hedges its H2 strategy

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Might be worse than burning coal

"there's no reason to think that we can't have a load of wind farms driving the process"

Sadly, there is reason to believe pretty much exactly that. To paraphrase a famous quote from John Maynard Keynes “The stock market can remain irrational longer than you and I can remain solvent.” == "Output from intermittent energy sources can remain inadequate longer than any reasonably sized storage can continue to deliver backup power."

But wait ... it gets worse. We can't currently even begin to guess the probability distribution function(s) (PDFs) that we would need to size the wind/solar generation or the storage facilities for zero emissions without nuclear power. (We do know that hydro, tidal and grid scale geothermal look to be inadequate although they can certainly help). We don't even know if it is actually possible to formulate those PDFs. For that matter, we don't know for sure that there are enough suitable sites and raw materials for wind to generate the average 40 to 80 Tw of electricity that would probably be required to support the 7 or 8 or 9 billion humans on the planet at a decent standard of living even most of the time.

Numerate people have actually looked at this and their analyses are not encouraging. Recommended reading -- https://dothemath.ucsd.edu/post-index/ Tom Murphy is a physicist from the University of California at San Diego. He's written a great many articles on various aspects of energy and sustainability. Moreover the guy actually runs his house (mostly) on solar power, drives a (mostly) electric car. While I don't agree with him on everything, all of what he has to say seems VERY well thought out. And the math looks to be entirely correct -- a welcome change from the wishful thinking that drives way too much thinking on energy

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Might be worse than burning coal

"Absolutely agree, nuclear is the only valid solution to our energy needs,"

I think you are likely correct. But if you think that the politicians have promised "zero-emissions by 20xx" without the slightest idea about how to achieve that or even whether it can be achieved are ready to build thousands of nuclear power plants, you are surely mistaken. They will very likely only embrace nuclear power after every other "solution" has failed. I'd not be surprised if it turns out that the construction of thousands of hastily planned and built nuclear plants is in humanity's future. I think the prospect of thousands of hastily planned and built nuclear plants should make all of us a bit nervous.

On top of which while it is unlikely that climate change is an existential threat to mankind, nuclear proliferation could be exactly that. The answer to that probably is adoption sort of fission plant that uses technologies that don't use and can't easily breed weapons grade U235 or Pu239. (U233 -- "Thorium" technologies -- is also fissionable, but it makes a rather mediocre bomb). The problem is that we don't really have an easily replicable off-the-shelf design for such power plants.

China stops networked vehicle data going offshore under new infosec rules

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: I long for the days of yore...

I long for ... I don't.

I have clear memories of a lot of reasonably adept American males trying to start engines on a collection of those computerless cars that had been sitting at a campground above 8000ft for a few days. The procedure was to try to start normally Then when that failed -- which it almost always did -- open the hood, remove the aircleaner, wedge the automatic choke open with a screwdriver (In the 1960s, you didn't go out into the wilds without a few basic tools). Then you trickled a small amount of gasoline into the carburator from the gallon can of gasoline you had stashed in your trunk next to your tent, sleeping bag and beer. Then you crossed your fingers, hit the starter and, if the battery held out, the engine would eventually catch and, if you were lucky, continue to run. If it didn't, you tried again until it did start or the battery died. A similar procedure sometimes worked in sub-freezing weather.

Today is better. It has taken a few decades, but the modern electronics have things right, and cars usually just start in any sane environmental conditions.

But you're right. Tomorrow may be worse if we don't somehow restrain corporate bad behavior.

After 15 months in preview, GitHub releases Codespaces – probably the fanciest new shiny since Actions

vtcodger Silver badge

A question or two

"Mysterious breakage was so common and catastrophic that we'd codified an option for our bootstrap script: --nuke-from-orbit," he claimed. The move to Codespaces was "an opportunity to treat our dev environments much like we do infrastructure — a commodity we can churn." However, the early Codespaces experiments were frustrating since the code for GitHub itself is "almost 13GB"

It never crossed their mind that there might somehow be some connection between "mysterious breakage" and 13GB of code?

And while I'm here, what the hell is "churning" development environments or infrastructure about? Are they trying to convert code/infrastructure to butter? Should we wish them luck in that endeavor?

Google staff who work from home might see pay cut under corporate policy – reports

vtcodger Silver badge

I don't suppose that Google ...

... would care to tell us how much it costs them to provide office space and support services to an office worker? IIRC the accountants call that "home burden". And also what it cost them to support a remote worker. Clearly if the cost of supporting a remote worker is higher, then paying them less is fully justified.

OTOH ....

Microsoft responds to PrintNightmare by making life that little bit harder for admins

vtcodger Silver badge

No more printing?

Oh well, using a computer to do actual work is kind of twentieth century, right?

The web was done right the first time. An ancient 3D banana shows Microsoft does a lot right, too

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Web is already 30

"... a morass of javascript that is generating popups ..."

But, but,but ... How can it function without unending pointless, slow rendering, text boxes in garish colors overlaying what folks are trying to read? That's what modern users demand, right?

South Korea to test grenade-launching drones

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Drones

"Can you imagine vaccination drones shooting people with needles.[?]"

Me? Not really. But I'm sure that some of our crackpot right-wing politicians here in the US not only can imagine it, but are mobilizing right wing militas to shut down the criminal mobs of undocumented, mask wearing, aliens who they are sure are roving the countriside doing that very thing.

AI to be bigger than IaaS and PaaS combined by 2025

vtcodger Silver badge

Let me Guess ...

The prediction is a work product from IDC's very own AI engine and is therefore completely credible, right?

Please, no Moore: 'Law' that defined how chips have been made for decades has run itself into a cul-de-sac

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Moore's law expired in 1975

"We will extract structural information from natures neural networks and learn why evolution chooses these structures and then be able to apply them to our own silicon ..."

And then what? We'll end up with a complex device that we only vaguely understand that exhibits the vast problem solving skills of a human hairdresser or sports fan? That would be a remarkable achievement actually But it's difficult to see what it would be good for. I doubt even Elon Musk would let it drive a car or sceen Xrays for abnormalities.

Perhaps we should consider the possibility (which I think is actually rather likely) that AI is a dead end -- a way to sink vast resources and produce little or nothing useful.

Chinese state media describes gaming as 'spiritual opium' that stunts education and destroys families

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: The cattle

"Having three jobs, just so you can afford a roof and some pellets for eating is just another form of slavery."

I think not. Slave owners need to worry about feeding slaves, housing slaves, providing medical care, etc. Fail to do those things and you'll likely be burying a capital asset.

Capitalists, on the other hand, just need an HR department of sorts in order to hire replacements. If the workers starve or get sick, somebody else will handle funeral costs and such.

US SEC chair calls for crypto regulation

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Probably Long Overdue

"It works like this:..."

By far the best condensation of the myriad problems associated with cryptomania I've encountered. Upvoted accordingly.

It's not that immutable, distributed, publically accessible ledgers might not be a solution to some problem(s). Although I can't actually think of such a problem. It's that exchange of value is already handled better and far more simply by existing mechanisms.

Tesla battery fire finally flamed out after four-day conflagration

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Flow batteries?

Pumped storage actually works pretty well. But:

1. You have to be prepared to lose between a quarter and a third of your input energy due to round trip inefficiencies

2. You need to move a lot of water. My cocktail napkin says you need to move about a cubic meter of water through 100 vertical meters to store 1kwh of energy.

3. You need to have a lot of water (but it doesn't have to be fresh water) available and you need fair sized "hills" that aren't overly pointy to put your upper reservoir on.

4. You need to use the facility a lot, otherwise the fixed costs -- which are the same whether you use it or not -- will make the cost per kwH prohibitive.

On The Other Hand, ideally it's good for many thousands of recharges without performance deterioration.

It's actually used to, for example, store power from nightime water flow from Lake Erie to Lake Ontario for daytime/early evening usage peaks in the New York City area.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Extinguishers...

"Not even close" Nice analysis. And dead right as far as I can see. ... except ... I suspect that a part of the problem might be battery self-discharge rather than combustion of its component chemicals. As I understand it, when a Li-ion battery is raised to a temperature somewhat above 200C, it starts discharging spontaneously. Warming it further. Causing it to discharge even faster. ... Thermal runaway.

A fully charged cell probably contains a watt hour (3600J) or more of energy. That's considerable potential heat. I doubt these cells are shipped fully charged as incinerating your battery bank not only cuts into your profit margins, but sullies the brand. Potential customers for your vehicles might decide to wait another few years before saving the planet. But, my understanding is that unlike some other battery technologies you can't fully discharge Li-ion cells and expect to recharge them later. So presumably they ship with some charge in the cells.

I submit that it's possible that liquid Nitrogen might be more effective than you postulate because it could potentially make it harder for adjacent cells to overheat and contribute to the conflagration.

Then again, probably not.

I'd be interested in comments from those who actually know something about Li-ion battery fires.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Flow batteries?

There are proven alternatives to Li-ion for grid storage in the marketplace. Li-ion just happens to be what Musk has on his cart. However, I'm not sure the alternatives like Sodium-Sulphur are any better from the Stuff_I'd_Just_As_Soon_Not_Have_in_my_Neighborhood_point_of_view.

Following Torvalds' nudge, Paragon's NTFS driver for Linux is on track for kernel

vtcodger Silver badge

Custom kernel

Aside from which if one doesn't want certain stuff in their kernel, it didn't used to be all that hard to build a custom kernel without the thing(s) one doesn't want. Presumably still could be done if one cares enough.

The UK is running on empty when it comes to electric vehicle charging points

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Hmm....

Downvoted because I feel that you aren't thinking things through. Yes, hybrids are a complicated solution. But for rural residents they at least represent a solution. And for rural residents in colder climates, the hybrid ICE component provides waste heat to warm the cabin and defrost the windshield -- something that would otherwise have to be done by an already marginal battery system. Hybrids do demonstrably use significantly less fuel (of which there is not an unlimited supply) than pure ICE in similar vehicles.

I'm not against electric vehicles BTW. There are many use cases where they look like a quite good idea. What I am against is the practice of setting ambitious (i.e. almost certainly unrealistic) goals without anything that remotely resembles competent planning. Where, for example, will the electricity to run all these green vehicles come from? Almost certainly not from wind and solar. The problems with those as a dominant energy source are legion. My fear is that it will come from hastily planned and built nuclear power plants. I'm not against nuclear power either. But the prospect of a world with perhaps 10,000 or 20,000 hastily built nuclear plants does make me just the slightest bit nervous.

Do keep in mind that most of the human race currently lives in developing countries and THEIR energy demands will surely increase dramatically in future decades -- a reality that tends to be ignored.

Biden warns 'real shooting war' will be sparked by severe cyber attack

vtcodger Silver badge

Slow Learners Syndrome

Downvoted for arrogance and stupidity. Bad case of SLS (Slow Learner's Syndrome) there I think.

BTW -- What makes the post author (and the American establishment) think that the US will be able to identify cyber-attackers well enough to target retaliation? Most likely any attack on the US will appear to come from someplace(s) other than their actual source. It'll very likely be like the still poorly understood 2016 attacks on US and Canadian diplomats in Habana and elsewhere(?) in 2016. Real most likely. But a mystery.

If you ask me, the US and others would do well to start identifying their critical infrastructure and moving/keeping it off public networks. Even if that interferes with some folk's (planned) profits.

You, too, can be a Windows domain controller and do whatever you like, with this one weird WONTFIX trick

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: Right to repair

Would this spell an end to Intellectual Property?

No? There's still copyright. For the most part, you can't simply copy anything more than small code fragments without permission.

Would that (killing Intellectual Property) be a bad thing?

No. Intellectual Property is pretty much an unworkable concept that serves as the basis for unending preposterous lawsuits that the courts are obviously incapable of resolving fairly or rationally. But no one is likely admit that until the end of days when The wolf shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the young goat, and the calf and the lion and the fattened calf together; ... and lawyers shall commence to do only useful things with their lives.

Thinking about upgrading to Debian Bullseye? Watch out for changes in Exim and anything using Python 2.x

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: I'll hold on for as long as poss.

One day our descendants will look back ...

As I understand it, the logic was. Python needs good Unicode support. In order to do Unicode properly, we will need to break backward compatibility. And if we are going to break backward compatibility anyway, let's fix ALL the stuff we wish we'd done differently in one fell swoop. Then, hopefully, Python will never, ever, have to break backward compatibility again.

True? I have no idea. But it's not really crazy. (Probably.)

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: I'll hold on for as long as poss.

Sadly, the industry motto is becoming, If it ain't broke, break it. Seems like kind of a dimwitted strategy to me. But who cares what I think?

China sets goal of running single-stack IPv6 network by 2030, orders upgrade blitz

vtcodger Silver badge

But once China goes completely IPv6 good luck to anyone trying to source IPv4 or even dual-stack kit.

I think it possible that the Chinese just possibly might be able to manage export versions of their kit that support IPv4 or dual stack just as they currently support various combinations of 50/60Hz 110/220v power with a near infinite number of wall socket variations.

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: At least they won't have to worry about international payment security

For those who are as baffled as I was by this post, PCI-DSS = “Payment Card Industry -- Data Security Standard.”

There's a Wikipedia article at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Payment_Card_Industry_Data_Security_Standard

My immediate reaction was to wonder whose security we're worried about here -- the card user's, the merchant's or the card issuer's? It appears that my concerns might not be entirely ill-found. From the Wikipedia article ... "The PCI system is less a system for securing customer card data than a system for raking in profits for the card companies via fines and penalties. Visa and MasterCard impose fines on merchants even when there is no fraud loss at all, simply because the fines 'are profitable to them'."[16]

I don't know anything about this. I just found it interesting.

I do doubt whether China much cares about the preferences/interests of round-eye Credit-Card issuers.

Reserve Bank of India official suggests country may soon have a digital currency pilot

vtcodger Silver badge


I'm probably just extremely dense. But I have trouble seeing what the difference is between a government backed digital currency and a prepaid debit card. You hand over something(s) of value and you get some some sort of token that you can use to buy stuff until it runs out of value. Nothing wrong with prepaid debit cards. But you can buy one today from Visa, MasterCard, AmEx etc. What's the rush to get governments into the deal?

Other than the need to be cool of course.

Russia's ISS Multipurpose Laboratory Module launches after years sitting on a shelf, immediately runs into issues

vtcodger Silver badge

Re: 30 orbits

All near-Earth orbits have period near 90 minutes. Much longer and you aren't near Earth. At least not at apogee. Any less and drag will bring you down into the atmosphere within at most a few revolutions.



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