* Posts by GuldenNL

80 publicly visible posts • joined 8 Mar 2022


MGM says FTC can't possibly probe its ransomware downfall – watchdog chief Lina Khan was a guest at the time


Re: Methinks the lady doth protest too much, methinks....

No offshore for customer service at MGM. Very strong union presence.

I would LOVE to provide color, this one would make for a Gary Larson Far Side strip.

Ahem...someone was pitching them to implement voice bio authentication, and suggested the helpdesk would be a perfect place to start since it would only affect internal customers and would be a relatively small and quick deployment.

Several months later... Help Desk social engineering from a "Sr Mgr."

US insurers use drone photos to deny home insurance policies


Re: State Farm are the worst

Yep! Had an October microburst in 2005 that took down two very large Mesquite trees that caused damage to our roof. I flew out at 5:00am the next day. Adjuster was there in the morning in my absence, approved up to $12,000 with whoever we wanted to use.

Got it done same week and they billed $7,600. Couldn't have been easier.


Re: State Farm are the worst

I've had State Farm for exactly 50 years. Never once had a problem with them, and my home and auto prices are so low I've never looked at their competitors.

20 years in Michigan and 30 years in Arizona. Had great coverage while living in the Netherlands for 5 years from Aegon.


Re: A physical visit is a lot more reliable

Those of us who grew up in Tornado Alley say to everyone in Hurricane country, "Hold my beer."

I survived an F4 tornado and if you think the movie Twister was asking the lines of Wizard of Oz, count yourself fortunate not to have witnessed one in person.

Professor Fujita (for whom the F - Fujita scale is named after) came to make measurements, and at my place of work (which I had just left 10 minutes prior) he measured the speeds after the fact at 260MPH or 418KPH. My two college roommates were inside, one was credited with saving a family of 4 from collapsing shelving and a dropping roof. What shocked me on my return 15 mins after the hit was the upside down car across the street with a 12 yr old girl strapped in, sitting on top of a large pick up truck.

Out of shear luck, I happened to be wearing a pair of wooden clogs that day. Perfect for walking across millions of glass shards everywhere I went.

Hands up if you want to volunteer for layoffs, IBM tells staff


IBM - A Leader in RIFs

I remember hearing about RIFs at IBM going back to the 80s. I've always wondered why anyone in their right mind would every consider working for IBM.

Thereby causing my latest question, are there any sane people left at IBM?

AT&T's apology for Thursday's outage should stretch to a cup of coffee


Re: Unable to do banking - text message MFA

Discussed using the latest and greatest voice bioauthentication with the CISO and his right hand minion of one of the largest Healthcare payer corporations in the USA.

So called expert right hand minion goes on to immediately kill any discussion of voice bio because "In the mid-70s my coworker impersonated me so well, he could fool all voice bioauth systems." DUHHHH! So mobile phone MFA was deemed the most secure method.

After waiting a reasonable amount of time, and with the help of an internal ally/co-conspirator, Mr. Minion suddenly had several Help Desk tickets per day opened in their name for almost a month. "How are they getting thru our MFA?"

CEO arranged his own cybersecurity, with predictable results


Re: Customers are the security liability

Not two weeks before one of 2023's most sensational malware events started, I pitched voice bioauthentication to the customer. And as I tend to do, suggested a PoC using their Help Desk since it involves only internal customers and the numbers are much lower.

"Too expensive! Yes, the PoC is very cheap, but who needs this for their Help Desk?"

I immediately moved on given the dysfunctional management at said customer. The rest is history. They still grumble about the cost (which really isn't that much) even though they are very well aware of the cost of leaving themselves unprotected.

Amazon confirms it locked Microsoft engineer out of his Echo gear over false claim


I'm guessing he was listening to Rap and heard the lyrics rather than the doorbell.


Re: They're not supposed to

"Scheduled so tightly they only have time to dump in the street after ringing your doorbell."



Re: Smart device

In the USA you can't have one that goes "dingaling" anymore because somebody complained it was making fun of people with mental health issues.


Sticks and Stones...

To me, the worst bit it's that this about "someone said something." Short of a threat of violence, it should not matter. But being a Boomer, I grew up with "Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me."

Now it seems that everyone is a snowflake and a snide comment from a demented old uncle is enough to shut off your services.

I'll make sure to shout out "Hey Google, quit listening while I read my electric utility bill."

Why ChatGPT should be considered a malevolent AI – and be destroyed


Re: Seems quite a few of you are either not reading the entire article or are missing the point...

Sadly there are many who somehow make money by claiming to be experts of LLMs yet are chattering like chimps about ChstGPT in multiple forums such as LinkedIn. When I make a rare comment questioning why they didn't discuss that the Chat-GPT models are non-deterministic, they either delete my comment or their original post.

Heaven forbid if I mention the massive compute power that will be required if this useless crap (currently it is in my opinion) is deployed as it is currently designed. The proposed CALM framework is a start, but they don't want to discuss this important facet of widespread deployment of applications reliant on LLMs because, "Yawn, it's boring and I can't show it off to my friends to demonstrate how smart I am by working with this stuff."

I can't wait for the end of the hype and the silencing of the chimps' chattering.

Linux Mint 21.2 and Cinnamon 5.8 desktop take shape


Cinnamon Mint is my Choice

My company managed tens of thousands of RHEL servers so for desktop I went to Debian just for something different. After I sold my company, I landed on Mint (around 2008 or so) and just have stuck with it. I no longer had any interest in different OS or distros about then, so haven't ventured out to anything else. Mint Cinnamon just works, upgrades are seamless so all is good.

Plenty of other distros that I've heard good things about, just no interest in checking them out.'

Amazon mandates return to office for 300,000 corporate staff


Re: Change if it's that bad

Mmmm hmmm. Been in a modern office lately? People in cubicles on the phone or Teams meetings with coworkers and customers outside of the office.

Just brilliant.


Re: Change if it's that bad

"It's also not unreasonable that a company would want you in the office for a couple of days a week if you were full time in the office before the pandemic."


"Because it was stupid before, we should keep doing stupid!"

What's up with IT, Doc? Rabbit hole reveals cause of outage


Obviously Not An Aerosmith Fan

Hunny Bunny never did like Steven Tyler…

Sweet emotion

Sweet emotion

I pulled into town in a police car

Your daddy said I took it just a little too far

You're telling her things but your girlfriend lied

You can't catch me 'cause the rabbit done died

Yes it did

Southwest promotes internal IT executive to CIO in wake of that Christmas meltdown


Re: Well, now.

If you know the current Southwest regime, it is.

Microsoft Office 365 Cloud has a secret lining


Re: Is that not an oxymoron ...

To be fair, Microsoft promises to hide them behind a Corvette.

Smart ovens do really dumb stuff to check for Wi-Fi


I tried to have a microwave, but my cheap microscope melted on top of my woodfired stove.

IBM top brass accused again of using mainframes to prop up Watson, cloud sales


Well we all know that Watson isn't right much of the time.


According to Watson Health, the fiber benefits outweigh the extra carbohydrates. Just skip the butter.

CES Worst in Show slams gummi gouging, money-wasting mugs, and other dubious kit


Re: Circling the toilet bowl

The new AI has anal recognition. One drawback is that it can't be used wherever there are many politicians. Apparently the AI believes that in their case, one asshole looks and sounds just like the others.

Cybercrooks are telling ChatGPT to create malicious code


Re: It's just a tool

The hilarious bit about this that many don't realize is that Microsoft owns the propriety GPT3 model. Users are accessing it visa APIs and don't know what's behind them.

It won't be long until Clippy is back in some form with GPT4 behind it. Bing will incorporate GPT3 and be available too the general public in the next few weeks.


NOT a database

ChatGPT is the interface to the Large Language Model GPT3 which is NOT a database.

Look for info on LLMs, you'll soon see the difference.

Alphabet reshuffles to meet ChatGPT threat


Re: The sooner Google is kicked in the nuts

The hilarious thing about ChatGPT is that OpenAI used to be open. But three years ago they complained that the original $1B that Musk, Theil, etc. invested in them to be open source wasn't enough, so they spun up a for profit vehicle and Microsoft invested another $1B and has sole license to the model behind GPT-3. The stuff available to others is via API and the model isn't open.

I'm no fan of Google, but they just proposed CALM which brings the capability of Large Language Models into the realm of reasonable compute power. So they are adding a lot to AI.

Stack Overflow bans ChatGPT as 'substantially harmful' for coding issues


Re: Feedback loop

BINGO! You win today’s most cogent post award.

Kyndryl loses $281m in the quarter as modernization agenda continues


Re: Think of the Money We'll Save...

And to think that as a cough suppressant, it’s off label use of Kyndryl female incontinence medication. ;)

Linus Torvalds suggests the 80486 architecture belongs in a museum, not the Linux kernel


Re: Lessons?

Agreed! And saying "You, fork it!" does sound more polite than "Fork it YOU!"

Canonical displays controversial 'ad' in shell update prog


Re: And thus the free software ecosystem is revealed.

I’ve been using Mint for my desktops\laptops for 14 years. I estimate that I’ve sent them US$750 over that time. No complaints from me when they mention the ability to contribute in their release announcements. But they don’t do it in the distro CLI.

IBM updates desktop mainframe emulator


Re: Everything about this is wrong

I’m chuckling as I hear the sales spiel, “Comfy deck chairs cheap! You will not find a better value on the Titanic, I guarantee it!”

Trump and Biden agree on something – changing Section 230


Nicely covered from a neutral perspective

The ridiculous direction social media platforms have taken have added fuel to the fire in the political divide. There is no silver bullet (oops, can't use that word on several platforms...) to correct the situation, but repealing Section 230 is a start.

In addition, Google especially needs a tough crack down on blocking apps from their Play Store. Their lies about Parler being a main platform for Jan 6 protesters was proven to be absolutely wrong, Facebook carried the vast majority of that traffic. Google is blocking Truth Social regarding lack of moderation. I tested it three weeks ago and copied 10 each of questionable right and left Tweets into a Truth Social account with a Trump loving userID and heavy list of MAGA followers. ALL of the right "Truths" were censored out, 6 of the left "Truths" were censored out. All real time using some AI and image scanning. Seems Twitter should be removed from the Play Store instead.

And Facebook/Meta, UGH! Should be blacklisted across the globe as a pile of waste attracting flies of all extremes.

Nice job of covering this El Reg!

IBM wins contract to support NHS App


Re: So they will be killing off older people then?

You best me to it.

Take your uovote. I'm off to snack on some Soylant Green.

The crime against humanity that is the modern OS desktop, and how to kill it


Re: Peak Usability

Aren't random results the target of Bing?

Someone tell me if I've been arguing about the intent off Bing!


Re: should be beaten into UX developers with a heavy object

You are 100% spot on. MSFT was a customer that my team supported as leads in the CRM space 20 years ago. We heard all sorts of botching & complaining about "new boss wants to make a mark!" asking with suggestions of how they could yellow Bill Gates lawn instead of ruining there UI (most often whinged about,) or something else.

HP's consumer PC biz shrinks by a fifth as inflation bites


Why HP?

Not sure why anyone would be looking at HP for a consumer Laptop/PC.

Look at Dell’s successful acquisition and continuation of the Alienware brand. HP killed Voodoo under Mark Hurd the Turd. What’s left for a consumer to look to HP for?

My 10 yr old Asus laptop is still massively fast enough for me to not have a replacement planned for 3-4 years. I run Linux on it, but do have a Windows virtual instance just in case.

Voyager 1 data corrupted by onboard computer that 'stopped working years ago'


Re: Distance

Known as a turn in the voice self service (IVR) world. About the same time that an IVR took in 1977 to complete a turn.

Source: IBM disguised Watson Health layoffs as a 'redeployment initiative'


Re: Big Blue Balls

I’m currently helping a Fortune 50 organization and as always, am careful about how I “stick it to IBM” whenever an opportunity arises.

I’m finding the Watson Health sell off is very well known and hear a tremendous amount of sniping at IBM from the customers’ middle level executives (all over 40.)

It is smelling like IBM are being pushed out, leaving not a single product or human resource behind. More to come, but the final decision is coming down very soon. It will take a lot of restraint not to sing and dance when the news is delivered.

PanWriter: Cross-platform writing tool runs on anything and outputs to anything


Re: I see.

Blame it on the Klingon time crystal.


Re: Enter candidate for dead simplest text editor

It's a situation where you have requirements (I was going to say special needs, but that's a charged phrase these days!) that others don't understand, yet some want to be helpful, while others are just deaf, dumb & dumber who comment.

There was a time years ago where I needed exactly what you're asking for. I understand 100%. I no longer have the need, but will give it a spin for old times sake and to see something new to me.

Thank you for your notification about this app.

Dinobabies latest: IBM settles with widow of exec who killed himself after layoff


Re: Funnily enough...

Aha! So Prince was singing about IBM executives pissing on careers after a huge party in wine country.

Battle of the retro Unix desktops: NsCDE versus CDE



You’re right! I forgot all about it while reading about OS/2

We've got a photocopier and it can copy anything


Re: Funny how you only hear stories about idiots in white collar crime

or hold high positions in the American Congress.


Not the end I was thinking of

Was thinking digital images of naked nether parts that couldn’t be deleted.

Perhaps after a visit by Mark Hurd. “I know printers man, but no idea about these copiers!”

Linux Mint 21 hits beta, and it's looking fresh


Re: Running inside a VM

I have a 2005 Dell Inspiron E1505, runs like a charm. I have it built into my workbench in my garage. It’s a tank, literally.


Re: Used Mint a Few Years

I’m very long term Mint user running Cinnamon. I under the love for KDE, just an old enough and busy enough to not have the time playing with all the myriad configs.

If you’re a dedicated KDE person, then Mint isn’t for you.

I get it.

IT departments often regret technology buying decisions


Garner is part of the problem

I don’t even read their word salad. Just today I had several people on Linkedin ask for my input on a Gartner report that left out the largest vendor because someone at Gartner had their feelings hurt.

My simple reply was, “They produce nothing of value.”

All too often business people lap up their liquid diarrhea like it’s priceless champagne.

Ubuntu Unity desktop back from the dead after several years' hiatus


Re: Mint Thanks You For The Memories

Agree with you. You know this as do I, but many Linux newbies started around then and they just made a wholesale move to Mint for a variety of reasons, but mainly because it was the most simple if you were just starting out with Linux.

It was around this time that I decided after 15 years of getting into the depths of Linux, I just wanted something that worked and that I didn’t have to spend any time fiddling with my desktop because my company was managing tens of thousands of RHEL servers. I sold my company, so have a wee bit more free time these days. I still haven’t spun up the latest version of KDE, but hope to soon.


Mint Thanks You For The Memories

Unity - the single reason for a mass movement from the Ubuntu distro to Mint.

Linus Torvalds says Rust is coming to the Linux kernel 'real soon now'


Re: "Real Soon Now."

Typical non-technical CIO -“C’mon! what am I paying you for?”

IBM ordered to hand over ex-CEO emails plotting cuts in older workers


Re: Buh buh buh Female Executives Are The Best!

Mmm hmm, funny how that goes both ways. You can’t go a day without hearing how female execs are better than makes, and how things are a changing. Are you writing those articles?