* Posts by devTrail

409 posts • joined 16 Oct 2018


Microsoft confirms pursuit of TikTok after Satya Nadella chats to Donald Trump



I don't know very much about TikTok, but from the description I read it seems to fall well within Microsoft expertise. They screwed Skype, they screwed LinkedIn, surely they'll know how to screw TikTok.


Conspiracy theory

Among the other rumours I read that TikTok is asking more than 10 billion dollars just for the US branch of the company. So my conspiracy theory is that Nadella asked Trump to start a show with his usual threats to push down the price.

We're not all about rockets, says NASA: Balloon tech is good enough for economical star scanning


Hydrogen or Helium?

To stay afloat in the thin atmosphere it will find at the height of 40 KM the gas in the balloon will have to be very light indeed. What are they going to use?

'Beyond stupid': Linus Torvalds trashes 5.8 Linux kernel patch over opt-in Intel CPU bug mitigation


What kind of opt-in was it?

I didn't get the description of the opt-in. From the article it seems that it is not a choice of the system administrator, but set by some software. I hope I misunderstood it, otherwise it would be a terrible solution.

Boffins step into the Li-ion's den with sodium-ion battery that's potentially as good as a lithium cousin


Re: A materials win-win?

How come every single article becomes an excuse for the fake flu propaganda?


You should go back at the periodic table and have a closer look. There the element are grouped by the similar chemical/physical properties. Sodium is so close to lithium that you can't rule out it will have similar problems.

They've only gone and bloody done it! NASA, SpaceX send two fellas off to the International Space Station


You almost fooled me. I was taking seriously your comment, but then I noticed the covid BS. Trump killed nobody with covid because it is just a flu. Trump did absolutely nothing he just pretended to be on the side pf those who understood the scam to taint their message. Plus he let other people do the dirty work because he knew that the fascists curfews would have been unpopular.


What an achievement

The flight also marks a momentous milestone for NASA for another reason, too; it’s the first time that the space agency has partnered with a private company to build everything from the touchscreen-driven capsule to the astronaut’s swanky spacesuits.

What a step. The more space exploration will go on the bigger the chunk of public spending going on the pockets of the oligarchs will be.

The collaboration with Elon Musk's SpaceX promises a cheaper alternative,

Cheaper because it is compared to 30 years old technologies, but what has been developed by SpaceX is nothing more that the prosecution of NASA projects carried on by ex-NASA employees.

'I wrote Task Manager': Ex-Microsoft programmer Dave Plummer spills the beans



I can bet he was almost the only developer in an under-resourced project. With the usual priorities set by marketing managers used to their monopolistic power they spent a lot more time turning word in a bug/backdoor prone macro engine than delivering a proper tool to manage the machines. The crazy thing is that even on servers versions of Windows that was the only tool available. Wherever I could I copied ProcessExplorer, but when you have to search for bugs in applications running on dozens of VMs set up by monkeys able to do only the basic clones it was rarely available.

Vint Cerf suggests GDPR could hurt coronavirus vaccine development


Re: Useless

The usual story of heroism to rally support for the cause. Te usual attacks to the person who wrote the post. Usual boring propaganda.



The importance of a coronavirus vaccine is equal to the importance of any other flu vaccine. Never forget that the mortality has been overrated for other purposes.

Lockdown endgame? There won't be one until the West figures out its approach to contact-tracing apps


Re: likely to be implemented here in oz, so how to manage it?

Network analysis is more sophisticated than what you think. Some known nodes can be used to identify unknown ones. By cross checking few repeated encounters with other data, like work colleagues identified via LinkedIn or other legal or illegal data eventually an unknown phone will be put in the right place in few days.



One of the few coronavirus "success stories" has been Singapore.

Not a big deal since Singapore is a tropical country. Yes, I know, fake news outlets published reports stating that heath does not stop the spread of the epidemic. Unfortunately they presented the evidence with the contorted language typical of a lawyer, where the paper says that the virus in hot and dry conditions is less virulent although you cannot be sure 100% that it will be stopped they claimed that you can be sure 100% that it wouldn't work.



Comment Most health experts agree stopping the coronavirus lockdown requires two things ...

No, it requires just one thing. That big business is satisfied after scavenging the rubble they created with this scam.

Nokia said to be considering sale or merger as profits tank


Re: Efficiency


Flat Earther and wannabe astronaut killed in homemade rocket


I agree thet this was just a test flight, but are you sure he was planning to use a balloon? The rocket I see in the picture does not have control surfaces, only fixed fins. A lunch from a balloon without control surfaces might be tricky.


"I once talked to a flat earther about this. They have some crazy "perspective plane" argument that "explains" this."

You could have simply replied them to rent a boat to go from Patagonia East or West, always straight. Either they fall off the edge of the Earth or they go back to the starting point. Well, leaving from Patagonia they might find rough seas, but no land blocking their voyage. The only problem is that nobody would do this because there's no point. It has already been done a lot of times since the 16th century. But on the other hand I also suspect that there is no point in proposing such a simple experiment because your flat earther friend does not exist.


Re: Don't underestimate steam

There are a lot of people willing to take this kind of risk. If you survive you are a daredevil, otherwise all the options are open, they might describe you as an idiot or a hero, but that says nothing about whether the fun was worth or not the risk.


How on earth can someone be so stupid to believe this BS?

If you think you got the meaning of my post by reading the title you are wrong. I am wondering how can people believe that the Flath Earthers exist. They are clearly a fake publicised by big media to let people believe there can be BS that is even worse than what they feed to the public.

AMD takes a bite out of Intel's PC market share across Europe amid microprocessor shortages, rising Ryzen


Accidental shortage

So, Intel lost just a small chunk of their share almost monopolistic of the market, but at the same time they sold a lot more in the high end segment, so I guess that this "shortage" didn't affect the balance sheet. In the meantime they are cutting their staff, so I also guess that the manager bonuses will remain unscathed. Are we sure that the shortage is accidental?


Who is investing in capex?

Intel or some external foundries?

I know that Intel still have their own factories, but AFAIK they also outsource part of the production.

Steve Jobs, executives shot down top Apple engineers' plea to design their own server CPU – latest twist in legal battle over chip upstart Nuvia


Doesn't fit

With the arrival of ubiquitous multi-threading the separation between server and desktop CPUs was somewhat blurred. From that CPU they could have derived something for graphic stations, high end laptops and desktops and so on. Given Apple prices and overheating problems with products coming from the suppliers that CPU did have a market within their business. Saying just that the iGiant is a consumer-focused biz. seems a weak excuse, isn't is possible that they had other reasons, like no competition (illegal) undisclosed agreements?

EU declares it'll Make USB-C Great Again™. You hear that, Apple?


Classic corporate propaganda: users are idiots therefore we decide for them


> However, the problem is that it will stifle development. Technology can move very quickly.

May I suggest you a great innovation? Two ports of different format side by side. Please don't tell me that there's no space in a crammed device or that it would be more expensive. For medium to high end devices production cost is just a small part of the price. As for the space if they can't solve the problem it means they are not so good at innovation.

Admins sigh as Microsoft pushes Teams changes – let everyone play!



As usual Microsoft is exploiting the position they have in one sector to push the business of the other sector. By controlling the OS they can decide in any moment to open a breach that could encourage some employees to naively hand them some of their company data.

GlaxoSmithKline ditches IR35 contractors: Go PAYE or go home


Re: Whats wrong with temporary staff?

From one side the pace of changes in IT is much faster than in other sectors, employers one day need people with a set of skills and the next day people with a completely different set of skills. From the other side distances are quickly shrinking, the employer knows that some work that now has to be done by people locally in few years could be outsourced to people in a country where labour is cheaper (well, in this case the same is happening in a lot of industries, but moving some coding work is much easier than a physical factory). Knowing all of this employers prefer to keep the open the possibility to get rid of the workers in any moment.

Space Force is go, go, go! Because we have a child as President of the United States



I suspect they are hiding behind childish labels the expansion of their surveillance program. Military satellites are expensive and need a lot of people to verify what they actually saw when you have a lot of them. They are trying to automate as much as possible with neural networks trained to recognise ships, planes new buildings and so on, but to design, monitor and take action of the observation you still need a lot of people, hence the 15000 people workforce.

ESA trumpets 'world's first space debris removal' with 4-armed junk botherer


Re: Conventional clean-up is extraordinarily expensive

It is not necessary. Current technology could be used the other way around, I mean a pusher beam. The beam could hit the junk to slow it down in that part of the orbit where it accelerates. In this way orbit after orbit it would get closer to the Earth until it would fall down.

The Windows Phone keeps ringing but no one's home: Microsoft finally lets platform die


I find it ironic that the huge amount of software is the only thing thats kept the desktop version of Windows going,

It's not just ironic, it's false.


Drawbacks of the cloud

When the big corporation sells devices that need cloud services to work they can also choose when to push them into obsolescence.

Tesla has a smashing weekend: Model 3 on Autopilot whacks cop cars, Elon's Cybertruck demolishes part of LA


Re: How come it only happens to Tesla?

Basically you are blaming the customers on the base of the usual stereotyped assumptions. Of all the possible hypotheses this is the least credible.


How come it only happens to Tesla?

Tesla is not the only producer equipping their cars with automated pilots, how come all the news about such accidents involve only Teslas? Do they have more coverage? Do they market their systems differently, in such a way that causes overconfidence? Or are they far worse than the competition?

Apple sues iPhone CPU design ace after he quits to run data-center chip upstart Nuvia


Re: It would be nice

I don't think that dismissing the case would be the right thing to do. Illegally spying on the employees should be punished for what it is, not as a side issue in other legal actions. I would like to see a parallel investigation and prosecution for these kind of things every time they come out and the managers responsible for them should be prosecuted as well, a collective punishment on the company usually affects more the small shareholders unaware of the situation that the wrongdoers.

Any promises to extend rights of self-employed might win an election, hint Brit freelancer orgs



They pretend to be on the side of the freelancers just to screw them. What should they ask? Can they start from:

1) Scrap the daily rate and pay overtime.

2) Early termination terms must always be equal for both parties.

3) Payroll companies are only in charge for payroll, not to act as a legal screen between the contractor and the client, if the client misbehaves the contractor can sue directly the client, not an empty shell company.


More and more can be added.


I was forgetting the most important thing: Agencies that wait the very last minute to send the contract and ask the contractors to sign it in a very short time without giving them time to read the contract can be prosecuted for fraud.

The same should happen when the 3 months rolling contract expires and the agent asks to sign again a full contract claiming that it is equal to the expired one, but they sneaked in some changes.

To avoid that Titanic feeling, boffins create an unsinkable hydrophobic metal with laser power


Re: Boxed double layer

Sealed boxes are already quite common in small boats to keep them floating should they capsize. Mostly they are used in fiberglass boats where they are also part of the structure. But that's not my point, I pictured in my mind two layers with a small gap and a frame inside because it is a structure close to the surface full of holes, I wanted to understand where's the difference.


Boxed double layer

Shouldn't a boxed, sealed, surface with a frame inside creating many air pockets get the same result? When submerged it would even last more than 2 months.

IT contractor has £240k bill torn up after IR35 win against UK taxman


Re: In case this is all confusing...

I agree with part of your comment, however I think there are a couple of details to clarify.

Computer "contractors" have long had to operate through companies (which employ the contractors), because contract agencies will not deal with the self-employed, since the Inland Revenue would consider the agency liable for any tax unpaid by a contractor who "disappears".

Here the reason is not just tax liability, there are other liabilities related to the few labour rights left in a contract.

The Inland Revenue ... and so has invented the notion of "disguised employment"

The notion of disguised employment was not invented by the Inland Revenue and in any case did you see the standard contracts?

Standard No competition Clause, Intellectual Property Clause and similar are so restrictive that even if the contractors declares themselves part of a consulting company they are strictly bound to one single work provider. If you are not allowed to provide your service to anyone else, but the current client you are working as an employee. Furthermore this is not a contractor choice, I tried to fight many times against these clauses and sometimes I had to reject a job offer becasue these clauses went too far. I talked to some colleagues and all of them are bound by similar clauses and none of them is happy about it. So, wherever I worked I found client offering contract roles, but asking the full time commitment of permanent employees.

UK govt snubs Intel, seeks second-gen AMD Epyc processors for 28PFLOPS Archer2 supercomputer


Re: Is Wee Archie getting an upgrade too?

The article states it will be shut down, which seems a waste, it will be 6 years old by the time, old by IT standards, but not so old.

Conspiracy loons claim victory in Brighton and Hove as council rejects plans to build 5G masts


Cancer incidents in developed nations have risen sharply in the era since radio transmitters were introduced.

Since radio transmitters were introduced a lot of things happened in the same time. Higher life expectancy and lower chances of dyeing by something else are one of the factors that raised the incidence of cancer cases. Plus there is chemical pollution, plus a lot of chemical additives to the food we eat today (even when the food has a lot of nice labels).


Since 5G signals are a shorter wavelength they cannot penetrate obstacles as effectively, hence more / taller transmitters are required to provide equivalent coverage

Unless you put more transmitters around each covering a smaller area, AFAIK that was the initial idea. There's also the problem that a single transmitter covering a wide area thus serving a big number of customers could not provide each of them the promised bandwidth. I think that the root of the problem is the amount of money they want to put in the network serving Brighton.



I don't get it. 5G was supposed to be using smaller ubiquitous antennas, so why did they want to put 20 meters high masts? Why does the article concludes that by denying the permission for those masts the council actually banned the entire 5G network?

Second MoD Airbus Zephyr spy drone crashes on Aussie test flight


Hardware of software failure?

Unfortunately for Airbus, the £4.3m Zephyr surveillance drone encountered "clear turbulence" while climbing away from the airstrip which caused it to tumble out of control

Does it mean that the software was not able to control the movement of the plane in the turbulence? I wouldn't be surprised, flying a glider is a lot more difficult than a normal plane. However there might be some missing, not so small, details in the article. It would be interesting to know whether at least the structure is strong enough to sustain some turbulences or it is fragile as an old zeppelin.


Re: A drone for the price of a business Jet ?

Nah. They overpaid the project when they bought it from Qinetiq, but that's what you can expect from a company that when it was privatised became a gift to the backers of the Bush family.

HP polishes the redundancy cannon, prepares to fire 16% of workforce


Retirement double standards

I've been told that the increasing life expectancy will force the governments to increase the retirement age, that I'll probably have to retire when I'll be close to 70 years of age, that it will be the same for everyone else, but ... when the powerful corporation wants to get rid of some workers and the European law don't allow to make people redundant so easily the government dutifully funds with public money their early retirement programs.

Surprise! Copying crummy code from Stack Overflow leads to vulnerable GitHub jobs


Re: Dumb community

Google search results are not much better. In the first few pages you only find links to a lot of blogs and just a handful of them are decent. Most of the blogs are just another collection of copy and paste code. Coding on the internet has just become like youtube or facebook a place crowded by wannabe who are ready to pretend or simulate anything to get the people attention.


Dumb community

I tried few times to post questions in term of algorithms instead of code and I got either no answer or trolls complaining that I was asking them to do the work for me without even understanding that I was not asking for some code. It even happened that an admin closed a question for being too high level. The trouble with stackoverflow is that the entire community has been dumbed down to the role of copy and paste bots without any deeper reasoning or willingness to understand what they are doing.

Fairytale for 2019: GNOME to battle a patent troll in court


Re: I have said it before

Your solution doesn't prevent big corporations from filing and obtaining patents as absurd as this one. Did you forget the bounce back patent or the trash bin icon?

Before proposing any solution we should recognise that the USPTO has become a corrupt tool in the hands of monopolistic companies. These patent trolls are just shell companies designed to shield the real suitors from the bad publicity.

Confused why Trump fingered CrowdStrike in that Ukraine call? You're not the only one...


Re: President of the US clueless

I'm assuming you're talking about the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelensky, who used to be an actor?

No. I'm talking about the TV host who had his own show for a very long time. Did you forget the apprentice? Anyway apart from those who actually worked as actors there are now lot of politicians around who just play roles scripted by someone else.


Re: President of the US clueless

When the actor (pardon politician) does the wrong thing on purpose cluelessness, incompetence, stupidity and so on are the usual cover up.


Raises some questions

The scandal is just a comedy set up to paint Biden as a victim and concentrate the attention on him. The goal is to help him gain some advantage in the primaries over Warren and Sanders. So why did they add Crowdstrike to their martyr creation scheme? That's really curiuos.



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