* Posts by hakuli

50 posts • joined 7 Aug 2019

Who watches the watchers? Samsung does so it can fling ads at owners of its smart TVs


I occasionally see a small, easily ignored, ad tile on the "Home" banner at the bottom of the TV at power on.

The ones in the Universal Guide are bigger, but tbh I think I've only used that once or twice since having the unit. I watch live TV so infrequently that for the small amount of it I want, I know the channel and time without needing the guide...

I did also go through the settings quite meticulously, and disable everything relating to "telemetry". It gets re-checked every time the TV claims to have "updated the firmware"... because I don't trust them not to have changed that setting on the sly.

(When I went to check this just now, the ad I was served was for a Samsung TV... which seems redundant...)

.UK overlord Nominet tells everyone not to worry about 'distorted' vote allocations in its board elections


Re: Nominet has lost its way

Could explain why Nominet's private ventures have been a bit flakey?

Even with a 49% uplift in sales and a 46% drop in expenses, Slack still can't turn a profit


Re: Slack has been a pretty decent solution for our team

One thing that amused me about Slack's image handling is that it doesn't strip EXIF data. It's something I've pointed out to a couple of people in Slack workspaces I'm in.

I don't really have a strong opinion either way about Slack; it's not exceptional, but it's certainly not the worst thing I've ever used...

Microsoft to charge $200 for 32 GPU cores, sliver of CPU clockspeed, 6GB RAM, 512GB SSD... and a Blu-Ray player


Re: Also.....

Both consoles will be available as part of Xbox All Access - so, for example, £20.99/mo will net you the Series S and Game Pass Ultimate. It's £8 more a month for the Series X.

Game Pass is the reason I've stuck with Xbox, and I think Sony will have their work cut out to match it...

That's how we roll: OWC savagely undercuts Apple's $699 Mac Pro wheels with bargain $199 alternative


Re: Brace yourselves for some wheely bad puns in the comments

I'll never get tired of things like this, and even if I do I'm sure I'll come back round eventually...

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


Re: Facebook Really

They did, on Xbox One it's already integrated into the dashboard. You can start streaming any game with a couple of button presses on the controller.

I've been using it during lockdown to stream party games so I can play with friends across the country...

No way I'm using FB's gaming thing, though. Good job there's a Twitch app... at least, there was a Twitch app...

An Internet of Trouble lies ahead as root certificates begin to expire en masse, warns security researcher


Re: Of course if they weren't so greedy ....

"Third parties cannot see what you are watching in that case. Or see traffic from you back to the source.

Both of which happen when using a streaming service."

Isn't a common "feature" of "Smart TVs" their ability to capture partial image data of whatever broadcast you're watching, so it can be phoned home and analysed in minute detail...

80-characters-per-line limits should be terminal, says Linux kernel chief Linus Torvalds


Re: Code... WHO CARES!

Welcome, magniloquent marvin...

Twitter ticks off Trump with new 'Get the facts' alert on pair of fact-challenged tweets


Re: I would pay full ticket price...

It's 280 characters now...

'VPs shouldn't go publicly rogue'... XML co-author Tim Bray quits AWS after Amazon fires COVID-19 whistleblowers


Re: "XML"

Sounds like the blog post which the Graun republished, and removed at the request of the original author...

Are you fixing that switch? Or setting it up as a Minecraft server?


Re: OK, so can run a game server on a switch

> Throw one of those into a branch office and a lot of what you might need for that office - routing, wireless controller, DHCP, DNS etc - can run directly on the switch with no extra hardware required.

Surely at that point, said device is no longer a switch?

From Amanda Holden to petrol-filled water guns: It has been a weird week for 5G


Personally, I preferred the introduction of a new form of wireless charging with iOS 8 - as I recall, you could just pop your phone in the microwave for 90 seconds and get a whole day's charge!

Hello, sub £-100 Moto: Lenovo punts 6.1-inch display e6S at low-cost crowd


Re: I loved mine

I still have a Swift 2X as my backup phone.

For what I paid for it, it was a belting phone. Shame that the battery started to go, and Wileyfox all but collapsed when the Russian money behind it went away...

Hello, support? What do I click if I want some cash?


Re: Wrong tool for the job.

You jest, but on the upside that would mean that every login was secured with a smart card!

If there's a bustle in your hedgerow, don't be alarmed now: Brexit tea towel says it'll just be the gigabit broadband


Re: Drying

Forget the button, or the hand dryer in general... it's the handle on the door you ought to be worried about.

Why so shy, Samsung? Weird Find my Phone push notification did not only affect Galaxy mobes


Re: So a disabled app can receive and display push notifications

I'm not sure whether the hacks at Vulture Central have used some third-party software or similar to disable the Find My Mobile app, but it is a "system app" which I don't think can be disabled through the regular Settings... (based on an S9, I can force stop it but the Disable option is unavailable... YMMV).

Don't know whether there's some option, once you've signed in with a Samsung Account, to say "I don't want Find My Mobile"... but since I have no intention of ever registering for one, I don't know...

(Not even the manky looking carrots that are being able to make the Bixby button do something useful, or having Samsung's bloatware automatically update has tempted me that way...)

How's this for a crossover? Scumbag scammed victims with fake gem mines – then pivoted to fake crypto-mines


Re: "The investing public should be aware that cryptocurrency schemes are" . .

I read this story right off the back of listening to the BBC "The Missing Cryptoqueen" podcast...

How these people get away with this crap is astounding.

Smartwatch owners love their calorie-counting gadgets, but they are verrry expensive


Smartwatch?! Pah

I don't know whether a Garmin Forerunner really counts as a "proper" smartwatch, since I can't pay for things with it and its interactions with my phone are limited to reading notifications and getting the weather info...

It only gets worn on days when I know I'll need it - i.e. if I'm going for a run - and even then, I only wear it for the absolute minimum amount of time. Otherwise, I am firmly attached to one of my proper watches which don't need charging on an infuriating frequent basis.


"Fitbit just "upgraded" their phone app, removing much of the old data interpretation displays and are now trying to sell everyone on "social interactions" and joining other users in ways that look like they expose everyone's data a little more."

... Fitbit were bought by Google, what did you expect?

Best buds? Apple must be fuming: Samsung's wireless earphones boast 11 hours of listening on a single charge


Re: Powered what?

"Personally I prefer wired when at home and not moving about much, but wireless for running."

One of the things I like most about the over-ear headphones I have at the moment is being able to switch between wired/wireless at will.

Bluetooth when I want them to be, cabled (completely removable) when I don't.

I doubt their sound quality would be to the standard of some (most) of El Reg's audio connoisseurs, but they're fine for my use.

Fake docs rock real docs: Ex-Wall St guy accused of conning medics out of £27m for bogus cryptocurrency fund using faked paperwork


Re: A simply test for this kind of operation.

It's not a bridge... is it?

Windows 7 will not go gentle into that good night: Ageing OS refuses to shut down


Re: And contrary to "expert" advice ...

I really dislike that "shutdown isn't shutdown" behaviour in Windows 8/10. In no small part because of some people who when I say "restart" instead go and use the shutdown option then manually power back on.

Thankfully it's easily disabled through the Power settings. (GPO/Regkey also available, obviously.)

Good folk of Forfar: Alan Hattel would like you all to know he's not dead despite what it says on his tombstone


A timely reminder not to take anything for granite.

AppSheet. Gesundheit! Oh, we see – it's Google pulling no-code development into a cloudy embrace

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Re: Borland Builder

Slightly OT, but I never really got on with Bootstrap... I've found I much prefer using Foundation.

Welcome to the 2020s: Booby-trapped Office files, NSA tipping off Windows cert-spoofing bugs, RDP flaws...


Re: "The patches are sent out as and when necessary"

You got the numbers right, just the wrong way round and with a superfluous full stop... but please, do keep making sweeping generalisations about the alternately-OS'd, won't you?


Re: "The patches are sent out as and when necessary"

You got it wrong.

It's install MS updates > reboot > reboot > make cuppa > reboot > make 2nd cuppa > finished? > broken.

In contrast, I get a single window on Ubuntu telling me there's updates for X/Y/Z, tell it to install and forget about it immediately.

(The more I use Linux, the more I find I like it...)

Shhh! It's us, Microsoft. Yes, it's 2020. We're here with a new build of Windows 10


Re: Too Slow

I presume you're referring to the feature updates, e.g. 1803 -> 1809.

They can be rolled back, but MS like to assume that if you've stuck with the new-fangled build for 10 days you clearly like it and/or it's working correctly* and so the old build goes away**.

* for certain definitions of "correct"

** or, at least, the option to roll it back does. I think the files loiter for a bit until you clear them out, but not certain.

SanDisk's iXpand Wireless Charger is the unholy lovechild of a Qi mat and a flash drive


Re: Wait, what?

The article seems to imply that the wireless doo-dad is Wi-Fi enabled, so one presumes that it is discoverable that way?

That being said, the article doesn't really (to my mind, at least) seem to offer much info about the damn thing except the obvious.

Video-editing upstart bares users' raunchy flicks to world+dog via leaky AWS bucket


Re: I wonder if....

I'm curious about whether Amazon's intervention to shore up the access had any unintended consequences... like, say, knocking the video editing service in question offline temporarily...

Leeds IT bloke pleads guilty to hacking Jet2 CEO's email account


The use of that Virgin Media account seems to have set the Dominos tumbling...

Microsoft explains self-serve Power platform's bypassing of Office 365 admins to cries of 'are you completely insane?'


Re: Desperate attempt at generating revenue

"Congratulations, you completed Word Town!

Next stop, Excelville!

Don't want to wait? Purchase a Fast Travel for $2.99!"

- Office 365 Saga

So, what's fashion going to look like on the Moon in 2024? NASA's ready to show you the goods

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Re: Orange is ...

"Space 1999 is on telly again! On one of those channels like CBS Drama or something, in the evenings after whatever flavour of Star Trek they're currently showing"

It's on the Horror Channel (Freeview Ch. 70.) at 20:00, after ST: Voyager...

Why the Horror Channel? I'll leave that up to you...

Twitter: No, really, we're very sorry we sold your security info for a boatload of cash


Re: Well...

Whoops, my bad. Happy to be corrected, though.


Re: Well...

"if they can muddy the waters around what "personal" data is they can argue they didn't violate the 72 hour limit"

My understanding is that GDPR itself defines what is considered to be personal information, and so in scope of the law. Twitter can "redefine" personal data all they like, but it won't make a difference if the law says otherwise.

If a mobile phone number is a sufficiently good identifier to provide targeted ads, by extension surely it's also sufficiently good to uniquely identify an individual and so - if they're an EU citizen - it's "personal data" and in scope for GDPR?

IANAL, though...

EU's top court says tracking cookies require actual consent before scarfing down user data


Re: That was nice

@ Charlie Clark "The cookie is required to map browser requests to the server session."

From ec.europa.eu

"...consent is not required for technical storage or access of the following cookies:

* Cookies used for the sole purpose of carrying out the transmission of a communication

* Cookies that are strictly necessary in order for the provider of an information society service explicitly required by the user to provide that service."

So, no change as I understand it. Absolutely necessary cookies, which your site simply cannot function without, can be placed without the consent of the user - though I think you still need the cookie notice.

As this ruling relates to a pre-checked box for targeted advertising cookies, which aren't essential, it falls foul of the rules.

Seems to me this ruling simply confirms the existing rules. IANAL, though...

Nine words to ruin your Monday: Emergency Internet Explorer patch amid in-the-wild attacks


Re: Microsoft Update Catalog only

I'd be more inclined to buy that if it was being pushed from Microsoft Update, but it's not. The only place its available, last time I checked, was the Update Catalog.


Re: Microsoft Update Catalog only

Either someone at MS doesn't consider this quite as critical as they claim, otherwise it'd have hit WSUS, or they think people looking after vast swathes of W10 machines have nothing better to do with their time than install it.

Chef roasted for tech contract with family-separating US immigration, forks up attempt to quash protest


Re: d**k move

I wonder whether my original comment was unclear.

The "d**k move" I was referring to was Chef removing the attribution, in violation of the Apache licence, not the original author pulling his repo.

Apologies for any confusion.


I was going to make a similar point.

They have since restored the attribution, so the original author of Chef-Sugar is credited as such in their fork.

Still a d**k move to have removed it in the first place, imho.

Time for another cuppa then? Tea-drinkers have better brains, say boffins with even better brains


Re: Smarts drink tea or Drink tea makes smarts

I presume they mean that UHT long-life rubbish...

Welsh police use of facial recog tech – it's so 'lawful', rules High Court

Big Brother

Re: Would I be right....

2+2=5 said:

"Well, not at the moment. But that's the next step isn't it? Covering your face in a 'facial recognition zone' will become illegal."

Ask and ye shall receive...


Here's a top tip: Don't trust the new person – block web domains less than a month old. They are bound to be dodgy


Re: ICU Pro

"The sites are all made up of two words, oakfill, radicalsurgeon, ribbonrequest, etc., so I assume there's an automated registration system based on word lists. I don't see how they could do this without the connivance of the registrars."

I, perhaps wrongly, assumed the sender domains were simply being spoofed. I've never bothered to verify they exist, though, just chucked them straight on the block list...

Don't trust Facebook's Libra cryptocurrency, boffins warn: Zuck & Co know that hash is king


Wait, what?

I'm sorry, potentially I'm simply being a little dense here, but...

FTA: "They point to Facebook's 2010 acquisition of a Friendster patent, which covers giving creditors access to social media profiles to assess loans, as a sign of where the company is headed."

How, exactly, is that a valid patent?

Buying a Chromebook? Don't forget to check that best-before date


"Consider upgrading"...

FTA: "The device will show a notification along the lines of: "This device will no longer receive the latest software updates. Please consider upgrading." "

To a better, non-Google OS perhaps?

(Would never buy a Chromebook personally...)

KNOB turns up the heat on Bluetooth encryption, hotels leak guest info, city hands $1m to crook, and much, much more


Re: Knob

I'm sure they'll have some stiff competition from the commentards here...

Microsoft Notepad: If it ain't broke, shove it in the Store, then break it?


Re: Leave the 'pads alone

"I would hate to see either of them disappear or, worse, mutate into some ribbon-wearing monstrosity."

Um, doesn't WordPad already have a ribbon? (Been there since Windows 7, I think?)

We're not going Huawei even if you ban our 5G kit, Chinese firm tells UK


Re: US trade Deal

One thing that astounded me about US food, was the absolute state of what they call "bread".

Why the hell they felt the need to add "high fructose corn syrup" to the ingredients of a loaf, I'll never know. Horrible stuff.

Pentagon says ethics complaint against JEDI mega-cloud is a non-issue. Its Time Lords say: That is not logical


re: Alister

"I suggest you go back and look at previous coverage of this story from El Reg"

By your command...

Plot twist: Google's not spying on King's Cross with facial recognition tech, but its landlord is

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Re: For what it's worth …

Only kind of related, but I did enjoy the fact that the cookie consent banner for the ICO was correctly "opt-in" for analytics.

(Part of me honestly expected it to be wrong...)

Thunderbolts and lightning very, very frightening as loo shatters, embedding porcelain shards in wall


Re: I Learn Something New Every Day...

Would that make it a "Bowl Shattering of Doom", then?


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