* Posts by BitGin

12 posts • joined 24 Jun 2020

Thales launches payment card with onboard fingerprint scanner


given the number

of phones in use without security updates, is it really such a good idea to use them to authenticate transactions like this?

Mobile malware may not have been a serious problem so far but that doesn't mean it never will be.

Also, is it reasonable to demand that everyone has to own a mobile phone to be able to pay for stuff? Sure banks could make having the 2fa on a mobile an option but that isn't the way they tend to operate.

The Wight stuff: Marconi and the island, when working remotely on wireless comms meant something very different


The hovercraft trip to Ryde is some much fun it inspired the Beatles to write their famous song just about buying the ticket.

Dropbox basically decimates workforce, COO logs off: Cloud biz promises to be 'more efficient and nimble'



But don't expect users who aren't interested in all that bollox to fund you while you do it by automatically doubling their annual fee by increasing their storage quota when they aren't even close to needing it.

Also, maybe, if you must come up with bollox, maker sure it's useful bollox that people want... Instead of a web browser in a file syncing app. We already have plenty of web browsers.

Ubiquiti iniquity: Wi-Fi box slinger warns hackers may have peeked at customers' personal information


If you're prepared to run cables for backhaul you can use mikrotik and their "CAPsMAN" system. I'm pretty sure it does count as ridiculously overcomplicated but the APs start from about £20 so it is cheap.

Or you can just buy a bunch of powerline ethernet adaptors and a bunch of cheap standalone access points and build your own. Just set all the APs to use the same ssid, wpa psk but different channels and your devices should automatically hop between them as you move around the house.

The only real advantage to something that calls itself a mesh network is that it has that backhaul stuff built in, you have a single management console so changing your psk / ssid is a lot easier and you might get some help picking the channels for the various APs. Some mesh stuff helps move devices between APs but not all and I'm not convinced it's that important on a home network.

Linux Mint sticks by Snap decision – meaning store is still disabled by default in 20.1


I'm curious, how is snap not open?

Everything is opensource except Canonical's snap store which you can bypass entirely by just downloading the snaps and side loading or you can just build your own snap store using apache. There's a 1 page blog post on ubuntu.com that details the whole thing.

You can examine the yaml file that builds each snap and you can open each snap and examine all the files inside it to see exactly what it does.

Assuming you're mainly complaining about Chromium being snap only... The reasons seem reasonable to me:

- The Debian packaged version of chromium is usually weeks to months out of date with security patches so it's a bit of a non starter.

- It takes significant effort to build it as a deb to the point that it almost looks like Google would prefer you to use Chrome. Mint have had to buy a bunch of extra servers to build it and at least one human to keep it building.

- It's very easy to build it as a snap and allows ubuntu to have a fully up to date chromuim with pretty much no cost to them. This is because the dependencies for chromium are a bit complicated and complicated dependencies are one of the things that snaps are intended to deal with.

- Chromium was not the main browser on ubuntu and if they have it in the repos they have to maintain it for the life of the release (potentially 10 years for the commercial support customers) which makes it a pain in the neck.

I'm not claiming snaps are the be-all-and-end-all but if you're going to criticise them pick something that is a genuine problem with them like their slow load times or lack of control over updates, the mess they make of the output of "df", etc.

Pure frustration: What happens when someone uses your email address to sign up for PayPal, car hire, doctors, security systems and more


>> Hmm, if BobSmith@gmail, is receiving emails for Bob.Smith@gmail..... is Bob.Smith@gmail receiving

>> emails for BobSmith@gmail??

No, BobSmith@gmail wouldn't have been allowed to create an account with that address as it's already taken by Bob.Smith@gmail. He probably tried but got told he could only have bobsmith8729@gmail. However he has bobsmith@workdomain and got confused entering his gmail address.

Ubuntu 20.10 goes full Raspberry Pi, from desktop to micro clouds: Full fat desktop on a Pi is usable


Re: But snap... ?

snap refresh

But you're not really meant to run it manually. It runs automatically when it wants to with no way to control it yourself (probably my biggest bugbear with snaps)

That assumes you installed from the snap store. If you side loaded a snap that you downloaded manually from some website then you will have to manually update that yourself.


Re: But snap... ?


It's sandbox stuff not file permission stuff (well technically some file permission stuff is used in the background).

From the cli you use the snap command to change them.


Here's US Homeland Security collaring a suspected arsonist after asking Google for the IP addresses of folks who made a specific search


Re: Stupid Gets Caught

Pretty sure that "carrier grade" nat would allow them to go beyond that router to the actual device, hence the "carrier grade" bit.

Excel Hell: It's not just blame for pandemic pandemonium being spread between the sheets


Is anyone prepared to defend Excel for...

hitting its limit on the number of rows and then failing silently?

Seems like the most basic thing a bit of software can do is warn the user when it hits a hard limit like this.

Venerable text editor GNU Nano reaches version 5.0 and adds the modern frippery that is scrollbars



No function keys is getting more common in 2020 rather than less so.

OK that's mostly laptops with the function keys locked into being media controls and you can usually change it but it does make some of the keyboard twister key combo presses even worse if you've got to add a "fn" key into the mix.

Maybe there is hope for 2020: AI that 'predicts criminality' from faces with '80% accuracy, no bias' gets in the sea


Re: Training data?

How to get images of guaranteed non criminals?

Easy, just use baby photos. What could go wrong?


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