* Posts by Ashentaine

47 posts • joined 19 Dec 2018

Zero. Zilch. Nada. That's how many signs of intelligent life astroboffins found in probe of TEN MILLION stars

Ashentaine

Re: The depressing possibility is that there may just be no aliens.

The really, really depressing possibility is that they WERE out there, but got killed off by some cosmic event beyond their control before we had the ability to discover them, and now we'll never even know that their civilization existed.

We've come to wish you an unhappy birthday: Microsoft to yank services from Internet Explorer, kill off Legacy Edge by 2021

Ashentaine

>They need it for enterprise software. When they say enterprise software they mean badly-written stuff perched on top of these "technologies" which is never ever, ever, updated.

This also includes the industrial sector where there are lots of big machines being run by crusty old software dependent on those ancient underpinnings, and can't be upgraded either because too much money would be lost by shutting down for the time needed to upgrade, or because the machine was designed to work only with that very specific configuration for proprietary reasons.

Oh what a feeling: New Toyotas will upload data to AWS to help create custom insurance premiums based on driver behaviour

Ashentaine
Big Brother

Re: good joke

Considering the ever-increasing number of people who consider their car to be an expensive appliance and lease instead of buying because they are led to believe that it's cheaper than long-term maintenence, and considering those same people will see anything the car company touts as a "convenience feature" to be a good thing... probably a lot.

I mean, people are already comfortable with plugging their cellphone directly into a car and giving it free reign to grab up whatever data it wants, so security clearly isn't on their top 10 priorities list.

Single-line software bug causes fledgling YAM cryptocurrency to implode just two days after launch

Ashentaine

Re: Who didn't bother to test their code?

Move fast and break things, baby!

Unless one of those things is the backbone of your whole project... maybe don't break that.

USA decides to cleanse local networks of anything Chinese under new five-point national data security plan

Ashentaine

Nothing will probably come of this

If Trump loses the election, all these anti-China policies will either be swept out with him or buried under legislation to the point of being stalled indefinitely.

If Trump wins the election, he'll say that he miraculously convinced China to "play nice" a month later and that they'll be allowed to continue as normal.

Unless there's an actual timeline set for putting any of this plan into action, then odds are it's just the typical jingoistic pandering that happens at the tail end of every American election cycle, except this time it's focused on a specific country instead of the nebulous "foreigners taking our jobs".

This investor blew nearly $300,000 on Intel shares the day before 7nm disaster reveal. Yup, she's suing

Ashentaine
Facepalm

Re: WAAAAAAAAAH!

She probably also has plans to sue for damages against the convenience store she bought a losing scratch-off lottery ticket from last month.

Firefighters to UK Home Office: Yeah, maybe don't turn off emergency comms network before replacement is ready

Ashentaine
Flame

Re: "Anyone surprised at the gigantean cock-up"

Or maybe just leave it on standby for a while, as the new one is most likely going to fall over a couple times before they actually get it working properly.

Be sure to also allow for the time spent on rounds of blame assignment in the statehouse and searching the couch cushions to find the budget for repairs, replacement and testing that should have been done before going live, but wasn't for a variety of short-sighted reasons.

Rental electric scooters to clutter UK street scenes after Department of Transport gives year-long trial the thumbs-up

Ashentaine

Re: Trials?

>Surely it would make most sense to scatter a set of stands around a city (e.g. next to transit hubs, car parks, major shopping locations etc). Most people who want to use these things will likely arrive in a city via a transit hub etc and will likely be returning there at the end of the day.

From what I understand with the rental bicycles that we have here, you'll get charged a return fee if the bike is left outside a designated return point for more than a few hours. I would reckon they'll make a tidy profit off people who don't read the service terms on the app that unlocks the things and presume they can just ditch it wherever because "I'm only using it this one time", or consider the fee to be an acceptable alternative to finding the nearest return point and walking the rest of the way, since it's still probably cheaper overall than taking a cab.

While eyes are fixed on Apple announcements, Microsoft's streaming service Mixer goes the way of the Windows Phone

Ashentaine

Hardly surprising

I mean yeah, Ninja had the Twitch channel with the most viewers at the time... an insane amount really. But most of those viewers were there specifically for that one channel and had no interest in anything else. When he was done streaming they simply left instead of migrating to other channels. You're not going to build a platform if the potential users can't be bothered to stick around and explore the other content.

Then again, Mixer really didn't do that great of a job of promoting its content creators to begin with, so there's that too.

Play stupid games, win stupid prizes: UK man gets 3 years for torching 4G phone mast over 5G fears

Ashentaine
Flame

Re: nutters

>(I wonder if these 5G protesters gave any thought to the harmful toxins that might be given off by the burning of these masts or the accelerants they used?)

Given that people once (and occasionally still do) protested the excessive emissions caused by SUV's with the method of setting them on fire in car dealership lots, creating a massive polluting cloud of burning rubber, plastic and fuel in the process... no, they probably haven't.

Not just its VCS console that's MIA, Atari is a no-show in court, too: Reborn biz ignores hardware architect's lawsuit over unpaid wages

Ashentaine

Re: Atari?

Correct. The Atari name and logo have changed hands a few times over the last few decades, but the original company that was headed by the late Jack Tramiel has been gone since the late '80s.

Surprise! That £339 world's first 'anti-5G' protection device is just a £5 USB drive with a nice sticker on it

Ashentaine

This reminds me of the height of the flip-phone days, when television was saturated with ads for a device that would shield your brain from the evil mind melting radiation your phone was beaming directly into your skull, improve your reception and even extend your battery life. All for just the low, low price of $24.99!

Said device was just a tiny mesh sticker you put over the earpiece, and shockingly enough it didn't really do anything at all.

Researchers trick Tesla into massively breaking the speed limit by sticking a 2-inch piece of electrical tape on a sign

Ashentaine

35 mph

There's a ton of places in the Midwestern US that have 35 mph speed limits, mostly residential areas. It's a holdover from the days when 55 MPH was the federally mandated speed limit and I presume most local governments don't see a need to change them to a round number.

Absolutely smashing: Musk shows off Tesla's 'bulletproof' low-poly pickup, hilarity ensues

Ashentaine

Congratulations!

Your Citroen Karin evolved into Cybertruck!

https://classicandsportscar.com/sites/default/files/styles/slideshow_slide/public/2019-06/1_weird_Citroen_Karin.png

Facebook iOS app silently turns on your phone camera. Ah, relax – it's just a bug, lol!?

Ashentaine
Facepalm

>There are of course countless other ways to buy things and send people money without using Facebook Pay but the company hopes that simplicity will cause users to share their personal financial information with Facebook.

And regrettably many people will do just that out of curiosity of how well it works, especially if it can be done automatically by clicking a big shiny button. And then they'll use it a couple times, and when the novelty wears off just forget about it and not even stop to think that giving such sensitive data to Facebook might not have been a great idea.

Truckers, prepare to lose your jobs as UPS buys into self-driving tech

Ashentaine

Re: Delivery drivers do more than just drive

I doubt UPS going to robodriving will completely kill the trucking industry. Certainly the larger outfits may follow suit eventually, but there are still hundreds of smaller regional trucking and shipping firms in North America that would rather pay owner-drivers rather than spend the big bucks buying their own fleet of trucks.

Things may change in the industry, and possibly not for the better, but it's not a sign of impending widespread collapse.

Ashentaine

Re: Delivery drivers do more than just drive

This isn't meant for the delivery trucks that actually drop the packages at your house, it's for the tractor trailers that haul large amounts of packages between freight hubs. The brown boxy trucks that trundle around your neighborhood and make all the local dogs bark like maniacs won't be affected by this.

Fresh stalkerware crop pops up on Google's Android Play Store, swiftly yanked offline

Ashentaine
Pint

"Track Employees Check Work Phone Online Spy Free" sounds like exactly the kind of dodgy thing the BOFH's boss would download. Surely that will finally provide proof that all those "strategy meetings" are really just 2 PM pub visits.

We don't mean to poo-poo this, but... The Internet of S**t has literally arrived thanks to Pampers smart diapers

Ashentaine

So, anyone care to place a bet on when the inevitable security breach and follow-up apology will happen? I mean, these are literal throwaway devices so I can't imagine they have any form of useful protection compared to even normal IoTrash.

Facebook's Libra is a terrorist's best friend, thunders US Treasury: Crypto-coins dubbed 'national security risk'

Ashentaine

He did condemn cryptocurrencies as a whole before singling out Libra. Though I suspect they don't care so much about unspecified terrorists using it as they dislike the idea of a massive corporation creating its own currency. Though the idea of Facebook using it to pay their employees in what would be company scrip is rather amusing...

Tesla’s Autopilot losing track of devs crashing out of 'leccy car maker

Ashentaine

Re: 110 Software Engineers on the wall...

I parsed it as 10% of the division's overall staff, including those 11 engineers. Not that those 11 made up 10% of the entire division.

But then again, considering Musk has taken direct control of that part of the company recently, there's no telling how many less prominent people have either walked away or were pushed out as a result. Turnover rates in some parts of Tesla appear to be comparable to that of a fast food restaurant.

Florida man pretending to be police pulls over real police, ends badly, claim cops

Ashentaine

Re: Summer silly season.

"Wannbees"? Around this part of the country we call them "whackers". Many of them are kinda sad but actually fairly harmless, just thinking if they get an old cruiser from a police auction and drop an amber/white service lightbar (usually non-working) on top people will mistake them for actual cops and get out of their way on the freeways, but never really taking it beyond that.

Misguided nitwits like Florida Man and the total dirtbags that are impersonating police officers for malicious reasons are still thankfully rare, for now at least.

Poetic justice: Mum funnels £100 into claw machine to win single Dumbo teddy for her kid

Ashentaine

That's how it is in the US at least. Depending on how much a wager costs, the machine has to have a minimum percent of hits for each possible payout. Electronic slot machines have to run for 24 straight hours once the software is installed by a state gambling authority (the casino itself never gets to touch that part) to certify they meet that percentage. I learned this when I had to do some work in a newly built place that was still setting up, it's rather interesting to see firsthand.

Not surprisingly, the penny machines out front have a much higher payout rate then the big bet machines in the back...

What happens in Vegas ... will probably go through the huge bit barn Google is building in Nevada

Ashentaine
Devil

Re: Desert Solar Power ?

Then they would have to spend much more money to buy the land for, build and maintain said plant. It's much cheaper and more efficient to grease a few palms in the state capitol and wave around the nebulous promise of "more jobs" to get hooked up to the local grid at a favorable rate.

As Amazon demonstrated with their attempted second headquarters scheme a few months back, a key part of these projects is squeezing the most one-sided deal out of the state they're building in before anyone realizes just how badly it's going to screw the average joe over in the long term.

Get this: Mad King Leo wanted HP to slurp two other firms alongside ill-fated Autonomy buyout

Ashentaine

>As it was, Apotheker and the board agreed to pay a 68 per cent premium for Autonomy (on its market cap) – incidentally, Lesjak told the court Oracle had been in the frame as a potential bidder for the big data biz.

Now I wonder if Apotheker bought Autonomy for the sole reason of keeping it out of Oracle's hands, rather than seeing it as an asset for HP. At this point I wouldn't consider such a thing out of the question.

Underground network targets Salisbury: Not the Russian death crew, this time it's Openreach laying fibre-optic cables

Ashentaine

Re: Micro trenching?

To be fair, Google's botchup was due to their digging the trenches way too shallow in a bid to speed up the process. I think they called it "nano-trenching" and only went down 2 inches, which anyone with a lick of sense could tell you isn't nearly far enough. Granted the 6 inches that microtrenching calls for is less than ideal as well, but at least the cables won't be rising from their graves after a few months like they did in Louisville.

Judge slaps down Meg Whitman for accusing Autonomy boss of being a 'fraudster who committed fraud'

Ashentaine

Re: Etiquette when in Court

> you really annoy a judge, they can simply sling you in the clink for contempt of court. I've no first hand experience of this, so I may be wrong...

At the very least they can have you removed from the courtroom if you're considered as disruptive, which is a pretty damning thing in and of itself. And I'm sure judges have a fair amount of latitude regarding what they consider disruptive to court proceedings.

Let's Pope mass upgrade of Vatican Library data centre is blessed with some of that famed infallibility

Ashentaine
Angel

Re: Vatican Library Data Centre

A Blessed Operator From Heaven, perhaps?

Talk about a ticket to ride... London rail passengers hear pr0n grunts over PA system

Ashentaine
Devil

>"South Western Railway has a policy of blocking inappropriate material, including pornographic websites, on its onboard and station Wi-Fi services.

"We are investigating this incident to establish how this material was broadcast on our service.

A mystery for the ages, indeed. It's a good thing portable electronic devices don't have any kind of built-in storage that would permit videos to be viewed without the need for an Internet connection. Cause if you're really crass enough to be watching porn in public or on the job, you wouldn't want to risk dodgy free wi-fi causing an "interruption" at the wrong moment, now would you?

Symantec boss Greg Clark exits biz amid dismal financials

Ashentaine

Re: Taking care of family and dealing with personal issues

"Health and family" appears to have become the new corporate codephrase for "I can't squeeze any more money from this sinking ship, so buh bye!"

Hate e-scooters? Join the club of the pals of 190 riders in Austin TX who ended up in hospital

Ashentaine

Re: Darwin's old friend Mr Crap Design strikes again

Most likely, the reason is that the smaller wheels are cheaper to produce. No one really expects e-scooters to stick around more than a couple years anyway, so likely the manufacturers figured why bother spending all that money on a proper design?

Ashentaine

Re: Darwin's old friend Mr Crap Design strikes again

>I do see the random powered scooter or skateboard rider, but they usually own the equipment, and, thus, are more likely to be wearing a helmet.

That, and if they own the thing they most likely have experience in how to operate it correctly. I would presume that the vast majority of injuries caused by these scooters came as a result of the rider having never touched one before and not knowing what the thing's limitations are.

The peelable, foldable phone has become the great white whale of tech

Ashentaine

Re: I believe that the problem the industry are facing...............

>New phones aren't anything special, no one sees them as a status symbol, in fact it's the opposite, some young people these days see displays of wealth as distasteful.

The public perception of cellphones is gradually going the way cars went over the last couple decades. Once they were a status symbol that not everyone could afford and gave a feeling of freedom, but now they're just viewed as a burdensome appliance that eats money every month whether you use it or not, is owned by everyone else and impresses very few even if you have the most expensive one out there.

My HPE-funded lawyer wrote my witness statement, reseller boss tells High Court

Ashentaine

>"I'm not sure about how much of this I actually read," replied Baiocco. "But I signed it."

You know you're in trouble when your courtroom testimony sounds like the setup for a punchline in a Dilbert comic.

Town admits 'a poor decision was made' after baseball field set on fire to 'dry' it more quickly

Ashentaine
Flame

>There are weed-burners that would do the trick for ice, even little hand-held ones that you can just stick a butane canister on.

In fact, Elon Musk sold a bunch of those for $500 apiece not too long ago...

https://www.boringcompany.com/not-a-flamethrower

Former HP CEO Léo Apotheker tells court he didn't read Autonomy's latest accounts before fated $11bn buyout

Ashentaine

Apotheker's testimony looked like it was rapidly descending towards a playground level argument near the end.

"Well... well maybe I didn't have time, okay? Running a company is HARD! I don't see YOU running any multinational businesses, so where do YOU get off telling me how do do my job, huh? Huh? Huh?"

Someone's spreading an MBR-trashing copy of the Christchurch killer's 'manifesto' – and we're OK with this, maybe?

Ashentaine
Alert

Exactly. Answering indiscriminate destruction with more indiscriminate destruction is never a good solution. Especially in such a naive manner like this, that assums only the baddies will be exposed to it, or that it won't be made even more destructive by some anarchy-minded jackass.

The fact that it's already been sent to some notorious troll havens already is not exactly helping either...

Geiger counters are so last summer. Lasers can detect radioactive material too, y'know

Ashentaine

Re: Power?

True, though such glasses tend to be crazy expensive. But if you're in a situation where you're around lasers frequently, then it goes without saying that it's worth the cost.

Ashentaine
Flame

Re: Power?

I'm pretty sure a laser like that would demolish your eyes before you even had time to blink. The cheap green laser pointers that are sold online can cause permanent damage with only a short direct exposure, since they often don't have an IR filtering lens in them to keep the cost down.

Oh, and most types of safety glasses designed for use with lasers don't filter out IR either (as again, good quality lasers have a built in lens to filter that), so don't be surprised if ze goggles, they do nothing.

So about that Atari reboot console... you might want to sit down. It's going to be late, OK?

Ashentaine

Even if this does come out at some point, the disaster that was the Playstation Classic has pretty much killed the market for the plug and play retrobox.

And even if that weren't the case, it'll likely not have the key feature that made the Nintendo offerings popular to the non-technical market; a carefully selected collection of fondly remembered games, presented in a way that completely insulates the user from the emulator and makes it feel like the old console.

The knives are out for cloud gaming as Nvidia flashes blade-based box packing 40 RTX GPUs

Ashentaine

Not surprising that they're rolling it out in Japan and South Korea first, those are the only two places in the world with good enough broadband to make such a thing viable.

I suspect we won't be hearing much more about this service, aside from lots of marketing fluff trying to convince people to buy RTX cards that no one really wants because it'll be at least a year before games that fully use its features are available.

We sent a Reg vulture to RSA to learn about the future of AI and security. And it's no use. It's bots all the way down

Ashentaine

A nice little fantasy, but...

...like most similar pie-in-the-sky predictions, this one doesn't factor in that setting up the infrastructure necessary will be very expensive, and once the numbers start getting crunched and people start asking who'll foot the bill for it, the novelty wears off pretty quick.

A municipality that can barely afford to fix potholes on its main roads certainly won't be able to invest in an armada of drones to replace or augment the local police force. Corporations aren't going to just donate an investment that large to Smalltown out of the goodness of their hearts. Federal grants would no doubt just be whizzed away on unrelated projects. So where would the money for such a project come from?

High-speed broadband fiber in America: You want the good news or bad news first?

Ashentaine

Re: How can this "micro trenching" possibly work?

In places where snowfall occurs, this micro trenching or nano trenching or whatever they want to call it would fail even harder, not just because of freeze/thaw, but because the municipal plow trucks would tear the patches right out of the pavement the first time they put their plows down to clear the streets.

All the asphalt plugs they put down in the summer around here got ripped away after the first decent snowstorm, and now parts of the highways look like the surface of the moon. I can't imagine how a long skinny trench would stand a chance, and forget about the expensive cable dwelling inside it.

Good news! Only half of Internet of Crap apps fumble encryption

Ashentaine

Re: An alternative approach would be just to assume IoT security is generally terrible

Given how much IoTrash seems to be Internet enabled for nothing more than the novelty value, I wish I could say I'm surprised. Not much thought is going to be given to security if the product is expected to be chucked in a drawer and forgotten about after a couple months.

Boffin suggests Trappist monk approach for Spectre-Meltdown-grade processor flaws, other security holes: Don't say anything public – zip it

Ashentaine

> "The world has been shaken up by the disclosure; was that necessary and helpful?"

The chaos and loss of trust that would occur if knowledge of such a major vulnerability were actively suppressed and was then later leaked with incorrect information, or worse, some baddie managing to cause real damage and that being what exposed it, seems like it would be far more damaging in the long run.

Jammy dodgers: Boffin warns of auto autos congesting cities to avoid parking fees

Ashentaine

Re: It will create a new market

Given how younger people are increasingly seeing cars as little more than expensive appliances that are leased for a couple years and then disposed of for a slightly different and newer one, I could see how some would see the appeal in that. Especially if you put the right marketing spin on it to make it seem highly trendy.

Chill, it's not WikiLeaks 2: Pile of EU diplomatic cables nicked by hackers

Ashentaine

Yep, that's why data slurping in general operates on quantity over quality. Despite Hollywood's depictions of a hacker being able to knife their way through a system and get right to "IllegalMilitaryOperations.txt", it's much more efficient to just take everything at once and filter out (and then sell) what you don't need later.

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