* Posts by The man with a spanner

40 publicly visible posts • joined 31 Jul 2021

WINE 9.0 improves ability to run 32-bit Windows apps on 64-bit-only xNix

The man with a spanner

A question for the knowlegable for the ignorant

I have heard it said, amongst other reasons, that one of major roadblocks to implementing Linux in one form or another in the corporate environment is that there are key applications that run only on Windows systems.

I understand that historicaly Wine may not have cut the mustard, but are we getting to the point where this will be a none issue?

In other words would Linuxisation of the NHS be feasable?

Scientists mull Solar Radiation Management – a potential climate-change stop-gap

The man with a spanner

Re: What is it with morons

30 years ago lithium was fairy fart electrolyte... and lo, we have laptops and phones that stay alive for a day +

The man with a spanner

Re: What is it with morons

About only 100 or so years ago some techno nerd "scumbag" invented a solution to a problem that didnt exist... and so cars and lorries were invented. Horses, trains and canals were perfectly useable but the new teck started to get use even though people suffrred from range anxiety as fuel was not abundent and wasnt where it was needed when you ran out of petrol.

Solutions to this problem were invented and we are where we are now.

I dont know what the final solution will be, it may be lithium batteries, or some other chemistry, or bio fuels made from algae, or hydrogen converted to ammonia so that it is handlable with current transport methods or something else.

One test of whether a technology is acceptable environmentaly is would you be happy to have your house next to it.

Would you live next to:

a sewage outfall next to a river

A nuclear processing plant

A coal fired power station etc.

If you wouldnt live there you shouldnt expect other to do so. Lets have some ambition for my and your children please.

The man with a spanner

Re: Energy Conversion Inefficiencies and Better Ways

Hi old dog, I agree with much you have said. Using electricity in applications that requre high quality energy is obviously the way to go. Imersion heaters are better than nothing but are a poor solution - heat pumps less so due to the multiplier effect. In terms of heating though conservation of recources (insulation) is key otherwise you are just pissing it away.

Buildings full of racks of computers should be heating nearby buildings, that way you get two bangs for your buck. Similarly with industrial pricesses - venting energy to the environment is wrong particularly when there are applications for the heat - heating people, greenhouses (so we dont need to import green beans from Kenya).

Air conditioning is another source of madness - in this world of global warming why not build a nice new city in the desert...FFS. In the more normal world cooling overheating appartments or offices with aircon vented to the environment is just reckless - use passive methods where you can or at the very least push the excess heat into your hot water system.

Basicly, stop digging stuff up and burning it and when we do use energy use it carefully and frugaly - stop pissing on our own bed.

This arrogant attitude to the worlds recources has been going on for only 200 years and in that time we have made quite a mess. As a race we are ingenious, but we must change our attitudes to consumption.

The man with a spanner

Re: > The vast majority of biomass energy conversion would be from urban and rural waste

There is a vast amount of resl estate out there that could/should accomadate solar electricity and/or solar heat collector panels. You should use panels that can do both idealy.

All the car parks should be covered as should flat roofs, particularly industrial or comercial ones. A roof tax any one?

We should NOT be covering fields with them.

The man with a spanner

Re: Specifically on DACS

Not knowing anything about the technology, but it seems to me that spending huge amounts of energy and effort to remove carbon seems crazy.

We should not be putting it up there in the first place + investing in natural sequestation (trees etc) that to a large extent looks after themselves would seem to be the most effective solution as you also get a saleable product as well as carbon removal.

The man with a spanner

Re: > The vast majority of biomass energy conversion would be from urban and rural waste

Not burning stuff is the point. Coal/oil is about digging up old biomas and releasing the carbon.

New biomass is about growing stuff this rear and recycling the carbon sequested back into the atmosphere next year. Not great, but better than oil (a bit). Using trees as new biomass crazy though, you can make furnature or houses out of them

The man with a spanner

Re: Its pretty easy to

Saying that coal is worse than nuclear is not particularly helpfull and doesn't deal with the waste.

Of course we want clean and safe power, that is part of the reason to shut down coal. Nuclear is not clean, particularly the end of life senario.


The man with a spanner

Ready in...

The technology will be ready for showtime in 15 years.

The man with a spanner

Re: Its pretty easy to

Biofuels - true, its a crazy idea, though more off the wall solutions (such as walls of algae) may provide fuels without using agrecultural space.

Nuclear power is wonderful if it wasn't for the fact that no one has worked out how to make it finantialy viable if you include the costs of dealing with the waste and decommisioning of the plant. Private industry is happy to build and run them as long as government (you and I) pay for end of life.

Solar power - not available at night... well spotted and a cheap shot! Many fuels are the result of solar power (biofuels, wind, wave power, oil etc). The thing that is messing from direct Solar is storage. One of the major power type used is heat. You can easily push your excess Solar electricity onto heat production (heat pumps, or simply imersion heaters) it all helps reducing fossil fuel use. You can also use direct Solar heat collectors to help with hot water and heating.

Wind -yes, it doesnt blow all the time, but in many places it blows a lot. This is why you need storage.

What we need is a mosaic of less harmful technoogies, backed up by inovative and posibly off the wall storage solutions

England's village green hydrogen dream in tatters

The man with a spanner

Re: Correction

You mock

Hot air is a valuable form of heating.

Palantir bags £330M NHS data bonanza despite privacy fears

The man with a spanner

Re: "despite privacy fears"


In quest to defeat Euro red-tape, Apple said it had three Safari browsers – not one

The man with a spanner

Nice try

Back in the 70s I recollect a report of a youth at a football match claiming that the brick he was carrying was for his girl friend to stand on.

Surprisingly the authorities didnt believe him.

Millions of smart meters will brick it when 2G and 3G turns off

The man with a spanner

Re: Easy to work out costs.


New maint cost aprox equal to old cost

Extra hardware cost of new device

Significant saving due to supplier not needing meter readers.

All in all cash positive - no need for money trees so ee can plant olives instead.

The iPhone 15 has a Goldilocks issue: Too big or too small. Maybe a case will make it just right

The man with a spanner

Re: Phones are lovely but they'd be much better without cameras

You don't put it in your pocket with your keys. You simply allocate a pocket as the phone pocket (mine is front right), and away you go.

Google 'wiretapped' tax websites with visitor traffic trackers, lawsuit claims

The man with a spanner

Re: The Register uses Google Analytics among other tools to keep track of readership size

How can a respectable technical website in all conciousness run a story critical of Google Analytics whilst also using it.

We really do need less hypocracy in this world.

How about setting an example of good practice.

Let's play... Force off the power to someone else's datacenter systems

The man with a spanner

Re: Time for a simple cron job

The aim I would guess would be to corrupt as much data as possible, trash the hardware and if you are luck set the generators on fire.

One year after Roe v Wade overturned and 'uterus surveillance' looks grim

The man with a spanner

Re: they could delete the entire trip

Or if they are not that technical, just leave the phone at home.

Wrong time to weaken encryption, UK IT chartered institute tells government

The man with a spanner

We dont need represive laws to protect children. All we need to do is mandate that all rooms in all houses have Alexa installed and running 100% of the time. Voice recognition works does it not?

So, now we can identify the cries of the children/wifes/husbands being abused and identify the perpetrators perpetrating.

All it then needs is to contract amazon to automaticaly send out the fines and we can reduce police numbers by 25%.

Atomic energy body proposes fusion framework to manage British energy grids

The man with a spanner

Re: Nice

I will accept that Nuclear power is cheap when the total cost of design, build, operation and the total longterm cost of decommisiong is icluded in the calculations.

Someone has to say it: Voice assistants are not doing it for big tech

The man with a spanner

Frustration + Solution

My partner uses Alexa to add to her shoping list when, say, she runs out of nutmeg in the kitcen. I don't want my nutmeg requirenents being transmittes to a server farm in the Arizona desert. Instead i think it should be on a personal interface secure server, easy to access, on my own network. For those of you who like acronyms we could call it PISSeasy.

Also requiring the same approach are the Ring door bell, in fact any sequrity camera, voice recognition control devices, in fact any IoT devices.

Tesla Megapack battery ignites at substation after less than 6 months

The man with a spanner

Re: Look to Dinorwig

A Nuclear plant with "all that fractured rock"?

Intel's net positive water use only tells part of the story

The man with a spanner

Re: Devil in the details

If they were potentially discharging warm water at any significant level would it not be sensible to strip it of its energy? Heat pumps are freely available and energy is expensive.

Maybe actually being green makes a lot of sense in this case. Its not like they are Techno Luddites.

Smart thermostat swarms are straining the US grid

The man with a spanner

Re: Randomized time offset ?

Smart thingies rellying on time (especially synced viathe internet) are an obvious problem.


Force people to set it themselves (we all have different requirements). Sometimes the right default is no default.

Random factor added +/- 5 mins

Modify start up if temp in a range

Any more options

US EV drivers won't be able to choose vehicle safety alert sounds

The man with a spanner

"Satisfying our customers is a primary concern for OEMs.

So what were they proposing - Rap for BMWs with tinted windows and Verdi for a Lexus?

Or have I got my cultural stereotypes wrong?

What absolute nonsense!

Union tells BT: Commit to pay rise talks next week or else

The man with a spanner

Re: Proposal for a New Law

Its the idiots with the MBA you have to watch!

The man with a spanner

Re: Proposal for a New Law

Why is it that the workforce are incentivised by a 5% bonus to do their job wheras a CEO needs a 100% bonus in order to be incentivised to do the job he (occasionaly she) is being paid for.

Bonuses are increaasingly part of the problem.

The man with a spanner

Re: Profit

The management would have a lot more credibility if their pay rises and bonuses were the same percentage as the workers rather than 30%+ v as low as we can get away with (single figures).

I'l put my tutu on and go and get the wand.

Systemd supremo Lennart Poettering leaves Red Hat for Microsoft

The man with a spanner

Re: Depart, I say, and let us have done with you.

So the answer is persuade DEBIAN to change/change back and hey presto you have the choice of two philosopies and everyone is happy.

Tech world may face huge fines if it doesn't scrub CSAM from encrypted chats

The man with a spanner

If I were kiddie porn peddler...

..I would make damn sure that I encrypted my 'product' before I sent it over the public network, thus rendering the whole law completely useless, whilst the rest of us suffer the consequences.

Similarly if I were a terrorist.

Health trusts swapped patient data for shares in an AI firm. They may have lost millions

The man with a spanner

Absolute v Proportional

Telling us that trust A negotiated 1 500 049 shares is not particularly helpful. More interesting would be the proportion of the company owned by trust a, B, C etc. If it were to be a significant then the trusts have some influence and the structure potentialy makes more sense.

US lawsuit alleges tool used by hospitals shares patient data with Meta

The man with a spanner

Its very simple

As a user of the internet I do not want my medical information readily available and traded, indeed I don't want any of my personal information hijacked and used in this way. It is simply not theirs to have and use.

Tho ONLY time you should have my information is when:

You need it for a specific transaction that we are conducting and I freely give it to you.

I freely publish the information.

To that end all web sites, web forms etc should by law default to not collecting any of my information or tracking me in any way unless I specifically agree not only to the collection but also to the use the information will be used for.

Failing the legal laggards getting off their fat arises and doing something useful I want my browser to auto complete ALL the opt outs in the web sites so that my data is safeguarded to my requirements rather than having to maintain a constant battle. Also the browser should nuke all the leaky elements (Facebook pixels etc).

Where are you Firefox / Brave etc

TSMC and China: Mutually assured destruction now measured in nanometers, not megatons

The man with a spanner

Re: Britain, alas, seems destined once again to blithely assume that it'll all work out in the end

Don't be daft!

Nobody in goverment has any idea whatsoever where Blackburn is. Haven't they got a football team or something?

Oracle plans US database for electronic health records

The man with a spanner

Solutions to the problem please

I think it is fairly uncontroversial that collecting medical data in population size chunks can help provide much improved understanding of human biology and hence advance medical science. This has to be a good thing in my opinion.

So the two questions that need answering are:

1) Who would you trust to do this?

2) How would you safeguard personal privacy whilst providing the benefits to all in society?

That time a techie accidentally improved an airline's productivity

The man with a spanner

Re: Easy to miss something trivial

Hold down [Ctrl] then press [C] ?

The man with a spanner

Re: Easy to miss something trivial

Hold down [Ctrl] and press [C] ?

The man with a spanner

Re: Two types of workers

Two types of lazyness

1) Constructivly lazy

2) Indolently lazy

It is important to distinguish between the two.

IoT biz Insteon goes silent, smart home gear plays dumb

The man with a spanner

Re: Open Standards

This should also apply to OS' so Microsoft should have to publish the source code when they want to move from XP, Windows 7 etc.

RIP: Creators of the GIF and TRS-80

The man with a spanner

Barm cakes

Correct, unless they are sweet and have fruit in them in which case they are tea cakes.

Tech spec experts seek allies to tear down ISO standards paywall

The man with a spanner
Thumb Up

The cost of everything and the value of nothing.

Why not charge £1 per electronic copy to defray some costs with gold, silver and bronze support from intersted companies and supportive government.

Keep it simple, keep it cheap for all.