* Posts by Peter D

130 posts • joined 16 Mar 2018

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BT: 'Quantum radios' could boost 5G network range

Peter D

One day...

The boffins and boffinettes will learn to speak English and I'll know what they're talking about. Either that or I will have to learn Boffinish. Every day a little bit more hope drains from my world.

Will this be one of the world's first RISC-V laptops?

Peter D

It looks like

A Gumtree advert for a stolen Dell corporate laptop.

Lawyers say changes to UK data law will make life harder for international businesses

Peter D

Improve data sharing between public bodies...

When I was a civil servant 40 years ago hardly any data sharing between government departments was allowed. For low clearance staff departments had no access to criminal records and instead personnel departments collected press cuttings relating to staff with convictions. When I later worked on computerising HR functions of a department I was amazed at the number of people whose careers had been stopped in their tracks without their knowledge because they were unlucky enough to have a local reporter write up their conviction. Now the pendulum is swinging too far in the other direction.

Samsung unveils 512GB DRAM CXL module in E3.S form factor

Peter D

The power

If I could afford to pay the power bill I wouldn't need an SSD.

Qualcomm ‘on track’ for Apple M-level Nuvia chips in late 2023

Peter D
FAIL

A backward step

At this rate within a couple of Christmases people will have to return to heating their home offices the traditional way.

Apple to bin apps that go three years without updates

Peter D

What if

Applemovestoamonthlysubscriptionmodelforthespacebardriver?

Google releases beta version of Android 13 'Tiramisu'

Peter D

Re: What the article needed

That was the EU that did that.

Microsoft partners balk at new licensing scheme, dent growth

Peter D

That escalated quickly.

Netflix to crack down on account sharing, offer ad-laden cheaper options

Peter D

Re: Netflix is over

"Netflix remains (very) profitable"

Netflix has only been reasonably profitable for 3 out of the last 12 years. It has accumulated over $15 billion in debt which it services by being a cashflow business. It's incredibly dependent on the US, UK, Brazil and, to a lesser extent, Germany. The US and UK are incredibly overcrowded markets which have only shown revenue growth because of price increases and consumers not being overly price sensitive. That's all changing because inflation is running riot. There's good reason to worry about Netflix because if it loses too many subscribers it can't afford content which means it loses more subscribers. Available content is dwindling because content owners want their own streaming services and unlike them Netflix doesn't have other significant revenue streams.

Peter D

Re: Netflix is over

The BBC renegotiated its Terms of Trade with independent producers that it commissions programmes from. Previously it had a one month IPlayer window now it has one year window with outside commissions which it can then extend non-exclusively in return for dropping its UK commercial exploitation cut from 25% to 20% and its international exploitation cut from 12.5% to 10%.

Peter D

In Netflix's two biggest markets (the US and UK) it is certainly close to saturation with subscription count being equal to around 20% of overall population. Places like Germany and France hover around 13% so there's room to grow in those places. Unfortunately, Netflix makes over half its revenue from 4 countries even though it has a presence in 190 countries.

At last, Atlassian sees an end to its outage ... in two weeks

Peter D

Re: Cheers to that guy who hit the ENTER key!

Many moons ago I accidentally deleted the members database of the London Stock Exchange. I stayed in until 4am putting it back to avoid me being on the front page of the Evening Standard the next day.

Dell trials 4-day workweek in Netherlands as massive UK pilot starts

Peter D

Re: WFH

The WFH revolution has allowed me to take on two full time contracts. I use the second one to put the max into my pension and £20k into an ISA and the rest into savings.

Google talks up its 540-billion-parameter text-generating AI system

Peter D

Re: Able to explain jokes?

"To comedians of both genders, probably."

Indeed but such a high proportion of comediennes are unfunny I feel more good could be done targeting that group first before starting on John Bishop et al.

Peter D

Re: Able to explain jokes?

A machine that can write jokes would be of great help to comediennes.

Any fool can write a language: It takes compilers to save the world

Peter D

Re: Too Scary, Too Complicated

What you are describing is the equivalent of old fashioned cfront. When C++ came out there were no native compilers so cfront emitted C and the C was compiled. It was an unholy mess. For example, when templates came out cfront would create a .pty directory and emit often hundreds of C source file to speculatively represent each specialisation possible of the parameterised types. LLVM is a vast improvement on that approach.

Windows 11 growth at a standstill amid stringent hardware requirements

Peter D

Re: Is anyone else seeing a major opening for switching to another Operating System?

Corporates will never shift the hoi poloi to Macs. The vast majority of their users send emails, write Word documents, watch cats being cats on YouTube and order shit off Amazon. Moving to very expensive and very fragile Macs makes no sense.

114 billion transistors, one big meh. Apple's M1 Ultra wake-up call

Peter D

Re: I was there

I first programmed using punched cards on a system running the George 3 OS. Productivity has certainly gone up since those heady days.

Russia acknowledges sanctions could hurt its tech companies

Peter D

Voodoo economics

So, companies can get loans at 3% if they don't lay off staff and index wages. The rest of the world, quite rightly, intends tanking the Russian economy creating all of the attendant inflation that entails. What use is a debt service cost of 3% if the inflation rate is 20% (at least) and I have to lock wages to inflation and retain staff? The only way the 3% service cost can be provided is by money printing which feeds inflation which feeds the cost of indexed salaries which feeds my need to borrow more money which is, by definition, an inflationary spiral. The only way out is to remove the locks of cheap lending, enforced indexing and staff retention.

European Union takes China to WTO over smartphone patents

Peter D

Re: Tit for tat.

If a Chinese company is happy to steal IP I'm sure it wouldn't worry about IMEI spoofing. It can be achieved in software in the same way as MAC address randomisation.

20 years of .NET: Reflecting on Microsoft's not-Java

Peter D

Re: Easier games to play

It does, indeed, allow you to mix styles. It still amazes me how many people I interview wrongly associate asynchronous coding with multithreading. Each can use the other but they aren't the same.

Peter D

Re: Easier games to play

"I guess your idea of writing multithreaded code is to FORK and manually use IPC, rather than just using async and letting the runtime manage it.

Just because you can spend your life debugging race conditions, doesn't mean you should.

Or is all your code strictly single-threaded, and runs a single processor core at 100% whilst leaving the other 7 idle?"

Async/await in C# is nothing to do with multithreading. When an async function hits an await the function becomes split at that point and the code following gets wrapped as a completion routine which gets processed on the same synchronisation context so execution can return to the caller while it completes during idle time on the same thread. The async modifier indicates that the return result of the function will be wrapped in a Task generic for that type which can be awaited on. The code only becomes multithreaded if you create another Task on which you call Run. In most cases you remain single threaded and your code has full thread affinity. In short async can allow you to make optimum use of the synchronisation context to do different things while waiting whereas multithreading allows you to make use of multiple synchronisation contexts to do things in parallel. The reason async applications which are busy appear to be shared over multiple cores is scheduler hopping which may continue a thread on a different core to the one it was paused on. It's still one thread.

Peter D

Re: Easier games to play

The Windows message loop has always been required even in the dread days of writing applications in C and still today in C#. I started as a C developer and the version 2.0 of MFC which you are misremembering was a nightmare but not as big a one as MFC 1.0 with C++ 7 which came in a box a yard long for the manuals in the shadow of OLE 2 (which later became COM) when you hand crafted virtual function tables. No sane person would today write a desktop presentation layer from scratch using even the latest version of MFC. It's not about handholding. It's common sense.

Peter D

Re: Easier games to play

Indeed. I sometimes have to revisit legacy C++/MFC code and, quite frankly, I turn to drink immediately afterwards.

Peter D

C# exists because of .NET

And it's one hell of a language. It's very well thought out and incredibly powerful.

Ericsson admits it may have paid off ISIS terrorists

Peter D

These things happen

Having worked in a couple of hotspots myself I know that paying local thugs is not uncommon. Ideally, I'd prefer that the likes of ISIS go unrewarded but if the alternative to paying is staff being kidnapped or murdered I understand why it happens.

Microsoft prepares for its staff to return to Washington sites

Peter D

The absolute horror

Employees might have to go to work. Shockwaves spread throughout the technology sector today when a leading employer suggested people it pays should turn up for work. Amnesty International would have issued a statement condemning the move but there was no one available in their Indignant Directorate to issue a statement due to staff shortages. However, Russell Wilson of the Information and Technology Workers Union called from his seafront retreat in the Bahamas to reject out of hand all forms of modern day slavery in the industry.

IBM HR chief insists 'no systemic age discrimination'

Peter D

Re: Genuine question...

In the tech business getting work when you are over 55 is incredibly difficult no matter how up to date you are. The 13 year olds interviewing you are absolutely terrified of you for a start.

IT technician jailed for wiping school's and pupils' devices

Peter D

Re: Don't people need a DBS check?

There's very little in the way of a mitigating factor here for him and a very major aggravating one in that he decided to punish entirely blameless people, some of whom were children, over his grievance with his former employer.

Peter D

Don't people need a DBS check?

Surely, anyone going to work in a school needs to undergo a DBS check? Call me old fashioned but hiring a convicted fraudster in a position of trust doesn't sit well with me.

Former tech CIO jailed for setting up £475k backhander scam with IT outsourcing firm

Peter D

Possibly but he was clearly at both ends of the deal in that he influenced the buying and profited from the selling. If the company was unaware (or could reasonably argue that they were) that he was actually the buying decision maker but simply an intermediary charging markup the directors could be spared pokey. It's the degree of separation from the buyer that ends up being an important factor when selling in a no questions asked world.

Peter D

Re: DV?

When I got my first PV the man who came to my house to do the first interview had a scar on his temple that looked like a bullet wound.

Google Cloud started running its servers for an extra year, still loses billions

Peter D

Re: So, costs of sales and customer retention on the up, then

The fact depreciation expense was cut by $2.6 billion yet net income rose by only $2 billion is also testament to that.

UK Home Secretary Priti Patel green-lights Mike Lynch's extradition to US to face Autonomy fraud charges

Peter D

Re: He has 14 days to appeal

Under the Cooksley criteria it is highly unlikely Anne Saccoolas would spend time in prison. The circumstances fall under category 1 (out of 4 with 1 being the least serious) which carries a sentencing guideline of 12 months to 2 years with the sentence suspended for someone with no previous convictions. Before 1988 hardly anyone was imprisoned for the equivalent of causing death by dangerous driving and even when the offence was created it only allowed for a 5 year maximum. It's gradually had the possible sentence increased to up to 14 years but she is, at worst, guilty in a category 1 sense only.

Peter D

He has 14 days to appeal

Which I expect him to do before undergoing top level training in appearing autistic, suicidal and desperately sad. In other news Google has seen a marked spike in searches for embassies of nations without an extradition treaty with the US in walking distance of the High Court. Mr Lynch, a notable Chinese citizen and staunch defender of the CCP, was seen earlier today shaking hands with the Chinese ambassador before boarding a Eurostar to Paris, his ancestral home, to reclaim his French citizenship. In a brief exchange with reporters he denied categorically having any knowledge that France does not extradite its citizens outside the European Union: "Non, non Je ne sais rien about les matters such" he exclaimed before being rushed to hospital with a possibly fatal illness for which there is no treatment in the US which tragically renders its sufferers unfit to face trial.

Bonus features: Sony uses Blu-ray tech to simulate 466Mbps laser link from the stratosphere to space

Peter D

Still no Netflix

The bottom line here is I still won't be able to get Netflix on my secret base on the dark side of the moon.

HPE has 'substantially succeeded' in its £3.3bn fraud trial against Autonomy's Mike Lynch – judge

Peter D

Re: "The finding is a massive victory for HPE"

I'm in England and in English law:

(1) A person is guilty of burglary if—

(a) he or she enters any building or part of a building as a trespasser and with intent to commit any such offence as is mentioned in subsection (2) below; or

(b) having entered any building or part of a building as a trespasser he steals or attempts to steal anything in the building or that part of it or inflicts or attempts to inflict on any person therein any grievous bodily harm.

(2) The offences referred to in subsection (1)(a) above are offences of stealing anything in the building or part of a building in question, of inflicting on any person therein any grievous bodily harm ... therein, and of doing unlawful damage to the building or anything therein.

(3) A person guilty of burglary shall on conviction on indictment be liable to imprisonment for a term not exceeding—

(a) where the offence was committed in respect of a building or part of a building which is a dwelling, fourteen years;

(b) in any other case, ten years.

(4) References in subsections (1) and (2) above to a building, and the reference in subsection (3) above to a building which is a dwelling, shall apply also to an inhabited vehicle or vessel, and shall apply to any such vehicle or vessel at times when the person having a habitation in it is not there as well as at times when he is.][2]

Peter D

Re: "The finding is a massive victory for HPE"

If you leave your front door open and someone burgles you your failure to secure your property doesn't negate the fact he's a burglar.

Peter D

Re: Lynch should be in prison

As for Deloitte, the judge has basically said that Autonomy deliberately hid information from them which is, itself, fraud. The reseller ring around is also fraud.

Peter D

Be wary of the word substantially

It could mean the judge will award a few hundred million or anything up to the full £3 billion+. Lynch, I suspect, probably needs to get his bags packed.

IR35 is the biggest threat to the contractor working model, survey finds

Peter D

This pudding is over-egged

A contractor on £700 a day who operates under an umbrella and pays full employer's class 1 NIC can still sacrifice £91 a day in salary to put £24,500 a year into his pension with the taxman throwing in another £15,500 to meet the allowed maximum to take home £6,866 a month all clear and avoid the 45% bracket altogether. Cry me a river. Yes, I am such a contractor.

Something 4,000 light years away emitted strange radio bursts. This is where we talk to scientists for actual info

Peter D

Re: It's A Bat-Signal !

I'm willing to pack Jeff and Richard's bags and drive them to their rockets.

Mike Lynch loses US extradition delay bid: Flight across the Atlantic looks closer than ever

Peter D

Not really a trial

Federal trials in the US aren't really trials. They are a mechanism for intimidating the accused to pleas guilty before they are almost inevitably found guilty. Punishments can be severe. They have as much to do with justice as a collection of kangaroos.

Machine needs more Learning: Google Drive dings single-character files for copyright infringement

Peter D

The algorithm is correct.

My seminal work "1" was published in 1973 and in the following years its sequels "2", "3", "4" and many many more proved highly successful.

Big shock: Guy who fled political violence and became rich in tech now struggles to care about political violence

Peter D

"My lived experience"

My annoying bullshit prattle detector kicked in when it hit that part of his statement and I was unable to read further. Did he say anything of note?

Canon: Chip supplies are so bad that our ink cartridges will look as though they're fakes

Peter D

Re: Playing the "Enviromentally Responsible" card

The reason why manufacturers have a "recycle" option is to starve the remanufacture market. Currently many charities distribute postage paid cartridge bags which send empty cartridges to a London company. The company pays the charities a few pennies to the for every filled bag. The company refills the cartridges and re-brands them for major retailers. By offering a recycle option the manufacturers disrupt this market and rob from the charities at the same time.

Peter D

Re: No Driver Update?

The only reason printers have drivers at all is to nag you about fake cartridges. Windows long ago switched to text file descriptors of printers. There is no technical reason for printer drivers to exist.

Peter D

Re: "Isn't that the standard curse of non-OEM cartridges ?"

The majority of remanufactured cartridges in the UK and, indeed, Europe are manufactured by one North London company called Environmental Business Products. If you buy an own brand cartridge from a major retailer it more than likely comes from them.

Co-Operative Bank today 'terminated' Capita's outsourcing contract years before it was due to expire

Peter D

Re: Ex Mutual?

The Co-operative Bank had to be separated from the Co-operative Society when it's losses piled up. It didn't help that the head of the bank wasn't qualified to be a banker and was, in fact, a Methodist minister with a methamphetamine habit.

Hyperconverged infrastructure provider Nutanix reports bigger loss than turnover

Peter D

A way with words

Does anyone know what hyperconverged means? The best I can come up with is more met than normal which leaves me none the wiser.

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