* Posts by Mike Green

83 publicly visible posts • joined 15 Feb 2007


There's a scarily good 'deepfakes' YouTube channel that's quietly growing – and it's freaking everyone out

Mike Green

Re: Infernal Affairs

Upvote for the "Man who though his wife was a hat" reference.

GIMP masks font downloads, adds horizon fix in new build

Mike Green


You might want to look at Krita, another free open source PS rival which does have colour space, CMYK et al, support and seems to be much more actively updated.

A £1.3m prize for a plunging share price at BT? Not so fast...

Mike Green

A couple of psychologists did research into bank investment bonuses. They found small performance bonuses (compared to salary) improved work, but large bonuses only encouraged the worker to work for the bonus (usually by being less ethical or careful). When presented with this research, bank bosses were fascinated and agreed with the findings. The researchers then pointed out that the bosses were in the same group of over-bonused workers. The big-wigs decided they were quite trustworthy and the bonuses had no effect on their behaviour... Since that study, this article suggests that virtually all bonus effects are negative ones...


Wanna tap 3 million phone calls? All it takes is one measly warrant

Mike Green

Re: War on drugs?

"THIS IS A STICK UP! Gimme all the god damn veg you have.... Yeah, open the fridge! I wanna see all the green go in this bag! Wait, is that cabbage? Fuck that shit.... I want the zucchini, the cucumbers, the bananas. None of this cabbage smelling shit. What you say? Bananas are a fruit? Well aren't you a college-going MF? If it can go in your ass, I want it. Now get your ass in there!"

That was an entirely different type of Fruit Pulp Fiction....

Mozilla wants EU to slow down its ePrivacy Directive process

Mike Green

Re: Mozilla could already do a lot for privacy

As a user of NoScript, I'm fed up of shopping list length domains I have to allow just to get a video working on a website for exactly this reason. It's all very well using Noscript to try and keep my browser secure, but when you need to enable 3 dozen domains just to get a page to display properly, it kind of loses the point.

Don't panic, Florida Man, but a judge just said you have to give phone passcodes to the cops

Mike Green

RE: I'll leave the final ruling to...


This law was brought in post 911, and the amount seized? 2.5 BILLION in one program alone, just in cash, from people WHO WEREN'T CHARGED WITH A CRIME. It's basically legalised robbery by the cops, and the proceeds go to who? The police, for 'law enforcement purposes'. This apparently can include buying new coffee machines... It's a nice racket!

Why do GUIs jump around like a demented terrier while starting up? Am I on my own?

Mike Green

New Win 10 machine stopping clicks....

I have a rather fun problem on my relatively new IBM win 10 laptop which I haven't managed to figure out. It boots up, and then after some random amount of time stops accepting left clicks and keyboard input. I can still move the mouse and get right-click menus, but left click and typing doesn't work. I can also press ctrl-atl-delete to get to that screen, and then going to the task manager seems to clear up the problem, but it's bugging the hell out of me. I've tried searching for the problem on the net but come up blank so far.

And people who write focus grabbing dialogues should be shot. A flash on the task bar is all that is needed. Also, those annoying startup windows which come up on top of everthing else and usually can't be dismissed should be shot too. I don't need to know I started an app, just showing the window is sufficient than you....

Nissan reveals self-driving chair

Mike Green


Who didn't first think after seeing the new chair in Wall-E, "Okay, so everyone will be fat within 2 weeks..."?

Robot cars probably won't happen, sniffs US transport chief

Mike Green

Re: I'm not so pessimistic

"They all have Audi on the front"

Having been tail-gated by one on the motorway this morning in horrific rain, I find myself having to agree with you.... And when I moved out of the way, he shot up to tailgate the guy who was in front of me.

ANZ Bank staffers drop slick incident response tool for Mandiant mobs

Mike Green

Re: Nighthawk?

Did you read it very carefully? They wrote it only once...

Shocker: Computer science graduate wins a top UK political job

Mike Green

I see that too. He actually understands a lot of the issues around the internet and surveillance, so obviously voted against any government's land grab there (which would have included Mrs May's grabs). I think this is a way to sabotage his future career.

Late night smartphone use makes women go blind

Mike Green

I wrote in to New Scientist on this subject quite a few years ago

But I don't think I got an answer. I wondered if anyone new of any long term damage that might occur, and how much brighter screens would have to be to damage an eye. We know looking at the sun even for a few moments can permanently damage it, and a brother of a friend once went blind for 3 days after doing some welding without a mask (surprise) but I imagine it's hard to do qualitative studies because of the ethical problems involved in blinding people no matter how temporary.

Lester Haines: RIP

Mike Green

Rest up fella, sounds like you've earned it.

One of the contributors I would regularly read for his wit and wisdom. He'll be missed by us all.

Victims stranded as ID thieves raid Aussie driver licences

Mike Green

Re: circumvent

As am I. I drive for an hour each way to work every day, and virtually every other day I witness, or I am nearly a victim of, some insane manoeuvre some idiot tries to pull on the roads in Sydney. Literally things I would never even think of trying in busy rush hour traffic seems to be common place here. People going through red lights at speed, general racing of each other, swerving across 3 lanes, being cut up regularly, having people pull out in front of me, tailgating, oncoming cars turning right in front of my car so that I have to slam on my brakes are just some of the things I see every day. My car, which I bought brand new in 2008, has been hit 3 times, once by the neighbour opposite as he rolled down his drive into the road, once by a lady going through a red light, and once parked in a car park, and now has a 'if this car is hit again it's a write off' plaque in it. I seriously started getting life insurance for the first time as I wasn't sure how long I'd last. A friend of mine who was a 25 year-old young mum was killed by a disqualified driver who was doing 100km/s in a 60 zone while drunk and got 3 years which would equate to 18 months. Every day there are calls for people to be more responsible while driving as deaths are an everyday occurrence. I had thought it was just me, but conferring with my colleagues seems to reveal the same viewpoint. I don't remember it ever being this bad in the UK. Shocking.

Dick limps towards inglorious end: Gadget retailer on the brink

Mike Green

The main reason they seem to have died is a massive con----struction job on the part of their parent company according to the article pointed to by the Reg:


It seems they only wanted them from Woolies to put them on the stock market and turn a 20 mill investment into a 520 mill payday...

Photoshop for 40 quid: Affinity Photo pushes pixels further than most

Mike Green
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I don't know why only Chris has mentioned Serif's other packages, Photoplus and Drawplus. I use PP as a PS replacement and it pretty much has everything PS does with a very PS like interface for only 80 quid. The two notable missing features are, for me, PDF import (which you can do with Inkscape, which I love, and Gimp, which I don't love as much, just because of the UI) and non-importing of PSD text as text, which only one package seems to do. That package is Photoline, which seems to be very full featured and which I'm thinking about switching to, just for this text import.

Just about everything else I've tried (and I've tried a lot) are missing more features.

Even Apple doesn’t mess with Taylor Swift

Mike Green

Re: Suddenly ethical?

I completely agree, this was a stupid greedy move they thought they'd try and then found out people weren't going to stand for it and so had to back down. Not an ethical move... It's annoying that people think it's good of them to back down when being good would have been paying their contributors without having to go through this. Especially when other artists have had the threat of having their music removed from itunes if they didn't agree.

Apple have been complete cocks, nuff said.

It’s Adobe’s Creative Cloud TITSUP birthday. Ease the pain with its RGB-wrangling rivals

Mike Green

New product : Bloom


Seems to be a worthy successor taken into the 21st century. Everything is non-destructive, brush strokes, layer adjustments, everything apparently. I haven't tried it yet but some friends have recommended it and it's only $100 so I'm thinking about picking it up as a replacement for Photoplus which was the closest to Photoshop in UI I'd found.

Some other notables are Krita (Free), Howler or Photoline.




IT-savvy US congressmen to Feds: End your crypto-backdoor crusade

Mike Green

The thing is, physical locks need physical access to break them. With crypto locks, the thief/spy can be on the other side of the planet, get past all the border control you have and right into your bedroom without going anywhere. With the same hole in the crypto, they can access everyone's data who uses that crypto virtually all the time, whereas it'd take centuries to break into all those physical houses, find their credit cards etc.

Stop the war between privacy and security – EU data watchdog

Mike Green

Re: Chose your poison carefully

I second that WTF... We need encryption to be more secure not less. Say I want to protect the valuables in my house. Physical crooks first need to get into my country and to my address, then break into the house and not set off the alarms, then find my valuables before the police arrive, and spend credit cards before they get cancelled.

Cyber criminals don't have to be in the same country, can look up where I bank and details about me, my business details, my family, my communications with anyone, and have access to millions of homes to do the same if we have no encryption. This kind of criminality is a thousand times more likely to happen than me getting blown up by a terrorist. How many people have had identity fraud or credit card fraud occur to them compared to terrorism?

I mean... DUH!

Cisco boss Chambers: It's our fault H-1B visa shakeup is struggling

Mike Green

Re: Eventually, someone at the top will get it.

I know a lady involved in giving evidence to the Senate about this fraud, and the company she worked at fired her for going to hospital on Sunday, her day off, to visit her father, but refused to fire a visa worker who continually turned up to work drunk, and was even banned by a client from its premises for this reason. The company brought in visa workers on a 1/3 of the wages of the US counterparts, got the US guys to train them, and then fired the US guys. They even brought in workers on just temporary visas where they weren't supposed to work. They even set the visa workers up in dodgy apartments they owned to claw back some of the wages they were paying the visa workers.

It's just a massive con.

What We Do In The Shadows? Laugh ourselves silly, mostly

Mike Green

Saw this a few months ago here in Oz, and it was very amusing all the way through with some killer bits scattered through it. Not the funniest thing ever, but well worth a look!

Oi, Android devs! Facebook wants your apps to be more secure

Mike Green

Re: Security? How about letting US have a choice...

One of the more useful applications of QR codes is the ability to store contact info. I've seen business cards (not updated mine yet) which have contact details and a QR code which you scan to then add those details to your phone, no fuss, easy peasy, hence the permission.

Online shopping tax slug not worth the effort: National Australia Bank

Mike Green

This isn't going to help retailers.

When Borders Australia went bust, they had a closing down sale. I went there with the wife with the hope of getting some cheap text books. Even with a 50% price cut, Amazon UK was still 10 or 20 quid cheaper, and at the time they were doing free shipping to Aus. With that kind of price difference, expect a few more retailers to go before prices get reasonable. These companies were loving it when they could outsource labour to cheaper markets, but when the consumer outsources their purchases, they don't like it so much...

Bacteria-chomping phages could kill off HOSPITAL SUPERBUGS

Mike Green

What took them so long?

I saw a programme on the BBC about 10 years ago all about the Russian use of Phages on bacteria. They would find a new bacteria in a hospital, go to the sewage effluent of the hospital and find a corresponding phage which eats it. The only reason it was a Russian secret was all the research was published in Russian in Russian journals, which western scientists hadn't been reading. They've been using them since the 60s or 70s...

Not complex....

Lawsuit: Infosys abuses visas to discriminate against US staff

Mike Green

Check out Wilco and H1B visas for a similar case going on.

I guess there's a lot more out there that have yet to come to light....

Boffins hide cute kitty behind invisibility shield

Mike Green


Except with the goldfish you can see the shadow of the stirrer thing move in the first video. Still, until we get verification, I'm a bit doubtful...

Adobe kills Creative Suite – all future features online only

Mike Green

If you can cope with a Photoshop-like product without it actually being Photoshop, I can heartily recommend Photoplus from www. serif.com. It is by far the closest I have come across to a clone, and is only 70 quid. They even have a cut down version free on their website. I tried GIMP and it is just so behind on features and development is so slow I just gave up on it in the end. PSPlus is so much faster than PS for batch editing pics too. Inkscape is very nice for an AI replacement. It's lacking in some features, but better in other areas, so it's swings and roundabouts. Make the break for it while you can!

UK's first copyright swap-shop for cat pics (etc) still yonks away

Mike Green

The Waco Fertilizer Explosion

There's a video on YouTube which a guy filmed from his car which shows the explosion, and has appeared on all the news in Oz. I wonder how much he's getting, if anything, and how much he would have got 20 years ago when he would have been the sole possessor.

Counter-Strike: Global Offensive

Mike Green
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We used to play this at Team17 regularly at lunch and in the evening

So so much fun.... Then I got addicted and they all started playing other stuff so I went online to feed my hunger, and got my head kicked in so much. Still I persevered, and got better and better till I could hold my own. When the teamsters took it up again, I massacred so many players with diving round the corner headshots and pin point accuracy it really shows you how much harder it is when you go international after playing a local team!

Dell Inspiron 17R SE 17in Ivy Bridge notebook review

Mike Green
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or pay 300 less


Congress puts PIPA and SOPA on back burner

Mike Green

Terrible foreign thieves!

Interesting how all the thieves must be foreign... I can't imagine anyone in the US downloading...

Australia should head-hunt Michael Gove

Mike Green

Need some programmer teachers before teaching programming...

The trick here is getting the teachers. Like many have said, all the teachers I knew knew faff all about actually programming. I taught myself how to program both sets of the school's computers, without any help from the nominal teacher who just supervised the kids who could barely type. Anyone capable of programming is probably going to be lured away from school by industry/university wages. Maybe that's changing with all the outsourcing to India/China though.

I'm no way against the idea, but there are some big hurdles to overcome.

The cure for US job woes: More immigrants

Mike Green

My friend and his girlfriend have been on both sides of this equation.

He moved to NY from London when she (a native of the US, but indian ethnicity) moved back there after a couple of years in the UK. They quickly found that their company was hiring indian programmers for 1/3 of the americans, bringing them in under very dodgy visas, setting them up in apartments the company owned (and charged them rent for) and getting the americans to train them up before firing the yanks. They have been tied up in a class action for 10 years trying to get the company to admit to it (he on the immigrant's unfair pay side, her on the american unfair dismissal side!). They even interviewed an indian, who admitted he was only taking the 1/3 of the wage so he could get into america. Who could blame him? The company's representatives almost had heart attacks at the deposition. They kept one indian on even though he regularly turned up for work drunk, while she got fired for visiting her father in hospital on a Sunday. She's even given evidence before the senate about the abuse of the visa system. They tried to give up the case due to ill health, but the company is refusing to let it go now, it's become a vendetta on their side. They have managed to get some 'revenge' though, they told the top one hundred company investors of the company's wasting money on this vendetta and so many companies have pulled out it caused the shares to lose 500 million. They're still fighting the case even though they've lost so much money and through the ill health. So I would be very suspicious of these companies who want the visas expanded.

Regulator reckons telly advert caps are just peachy

Mike Green

In Oz the level is atrocious....

Really, I thought we had it bad in the UK, but adverts can easily double the length of a movie over here. I wouldn't mind if it was limited to 4 breaks per hour, but it can be literally 2 minutes and then the ads come on again. It's okay though, there's very little worth watching on Oz TV that we don't already watch via the interwebs and then DVDs (absolving our guilt!) They've got digital freeview here now, but have yet to go through the sort out we went through in the UK, with the Beeb taking it over and making it half decent. 2/3rds of the channels are just clones of the remaining 3rd, not even usefully time shifted like the +1s in the UK.

2011's Best... Smartphones

Mike Green
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Acer Liquid Metal for AU$128 (84 quid)

I got this phone pay as you go in Oz and while it's not the fastest chip on the market, it handles flash pretty well on it's 480x800 screen, has a 5MP camera with HD video recording and a micro SD slot so you can stick as much memory as you like in it. I was seriously suprised by the price for those specs.

Parallel import argument turns toxic in Oz

Mike Green

with certain exceptions (these days, chiefly books).

Which is why all the book shops are going out of business, and even when Borders had its closing down sale with 50% off all books, you could STILL get them on Amazon for half those proces. The price cartels are basically killing the Australian retail industry, and their own ridiculous margins.

Uncharted 3: Drake's Deception

Mike Green
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The other two were soooo good...

But I think this will have to wait till Christmas, or at least till I've finished Arkham City....I am in a gamer's dilemma!

Neil Armstrong: US space program 'embarrassing'

Mike Green

Nasa's budget

18.7 Billion dollars in 2010.

Military budget for 2010? $685.1 billion

Books promo

Mike Green

A guy called Fletcher almost blinds himself with a cross bow and no one notices?

That's got to be Darwinian Nominative determinism in action! Glad to hear you made it okay though with only a little impairment!

Dead bloke reanimates in mortuary

Mike Green

Possibly not the best idea Thomas....

For an example, see Zombieland and Bill Murray's attempt to carry off this gag...

EA angers fans over Battlefield 3 pre-order exclusives

Mike Green
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Not just consumers EA likes to screw...

But devs for EA have long been complaining about working conditions, overlong work hours, etc. Basically treating the people who make them all their lovely cash like rubbish and not paying them much.

Engineering student cracks major riddle of the universe

Mike Green

That's how I read it too.

What exactly did the student do apart from gather huge amounts of data and then bring it to a doctor who actually figured it out?

Apple seeks anti-snoop display patent

Mike Green

Didn't this already exist?

We spent all that tech and money on displays which had ever wider viewing angles and now they want to go backwards again :)

Royal Weddings, PCs and Cameron's brass balls

Mike Green

Half a dozen of one, 6 of the other....

The problem is government is supposed to save during rich times (when money is freely circulating on its own) and spend in depression (to get money circulating) and neither chancellors seem to understand that. 'Frugle' Brown overspent when there was lots of money in the coffers, and sold the gold at the worst moment. Now Osborne is going too far the other way.

Android malware attacks show perils of Google openness

Mike Green

VIrus/malware checkers

So are there no virus checkers/malware shields available on android? I would have thought the AVG et al would be jumping into this new market...

Qld police warn against Windows service scam

Mike Green

This scam isn't going to last long hopefully....

My mother in law got called the other day by a guy claiming to be from Microsoft and saying there was something wrong with her pc. Fortunately she'd been told about it by a friend, and she immediately said 'No you're not! Aren't you ashamed of yourself?' and proceeded to tell him off till he hung up!

Security shocker: Android apps send private data in clear

Mike Green


Both Apple and Google seem to be in the business of harvesting user's information as a matter of course, they really don't seem keen on keeping their user's data private from anyone else either, and this has put me off getting a so-called smart phone till they've had a little time to work at least the most obvious of their quirks out.

Microsoft sends IE9 'do-not-track' tech to W3C

Mike Green

Hmmm, MS might have it right

Mozilla is asking advertisers to respect a header and not scrape your info as you browse their web sites.... MS is withholding the info altogether unless you allow a site? That kind of sounds more trustworthy to me..... I MUST be confused...

Apple tightens rules for iPad news delivery

Mike Green
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A land grab from Apple? Shurely shome mishtake,,,,

So Apple are going to take over the subscription lists of newspapers, and setting up their own news delivery service... Nothing fishy there then....