* Posts by Mage

5305 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

Bungling Microsoft singlehandedly proves that golden backdoor keys are a terrible idea

Mage
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Re: Surface RT with Android sounds good.

Linux Mint, Mate Desktop (change some default settings) and "Redmond" theme. More like windows than Win 8 or Win 10.

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Mage
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Re: Ouch

Unless this is a deliberate mistake?

Discredits the FBI policy they hate.

Reduces howls of indignation about the orphaning of ARM Surface tablets.

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Windows 10 Anniversary Update crashing under Avast antivirus update

Mage
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Headmaster

Re: Ahh yess

Education and proper configuration and external firewall beats ALL AV for effectiveness. 30 Years of testing proves it.

AV is part of the problem, not a solution. False sense of security substitutes for users actually paying attention and learning how to use Windows safely. UAC is also pointless.

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Brit network O2 hands out free Windows virus with USB pens

Mage
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Win95

Didn't version b of Win 95 have USB?

I've been disabling Autorun on CDs, Network Shares and USB since they existed. I remember in 1995 wonder who had the the stupid idea of Autorun. (Though maybe MS copied the idea from Amiga)

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Mage
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Re: Windows NT???

Win2K (NT5.0), XP (NT5.1), 2003, Vista etc are all NT.

NT4.0 actually did have a engineering release USB stack. It worked with Windows 2000 devices/drivers, if you hacked the installer to accept NT4.0 or your NT4.0 to report as NT 5.0 (Windows 2000)

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Classic Shell, Audacity downloads infected with retro MBR nuke nasty

Mage
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Re: There is much more software available for Windows

Used to be true. However most of the engineering stuff I use hasn't been updated for years and doesn't work on various versions of Windows since XP (depending on application and version of windows).

I've had good success with WINE on Linux Mint + Mate. The only newer programs I want are English QQ, which doesn't exist on Linux (nor work on WINE), Digiguide, Kindle Reader and Notepad++ (which all do work on WINE). Compilers are no problem. LibreOffice, Inkscape, Thunderbird, Calibre, Celestia, Gimp, Audacity, Filezilla, PuTTY, Eagle CAD, Xchat (or clone), Scratch, Stellarium, Apache, PHP, MySQL, Skype, etc are all on Windows and Linux "natively". Many programs have less bloated Linux alternatives. I guess maybe Sage Accounts and Payroll might be a problem, I don't know as I don't do IT support any longer, thank God.

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Intel's smartwatches are so hot right now – too hot: Basis Peak recalled for skin burns, blistering

Mage
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Re: CPU and power consumption? @ diodesign

Bizarre

That's amazing they can make it run too hot. After all most gadgets the CPU/GPU consumption is related to screen size, decoding (i.e. H264 video) and refresh rate. A watch screen should use less power than the the radio, unless it's madly bright.

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Mage
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CPU and power consumption?

What on earth was in it?

The 1998 486 based Nokia communicator N9110 didn't get too hot. Though after that they used ARM.

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Windows 10 grabs 22 per cent desktop market share in a year

Mage
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Devil

Re: 22% in a year isnt bad for a free OS

Actually was NT3.51 free to some or all NT3.5 Users? Though a true 32bit OS and Win95 wasn't (and maybe Office 95 wasn't a real 32 bit application), it could not run Office 95 as MS deliberately added new APIs not in Win32 on windows 95, to stop people running newer applications on Win3.x + Win32s. So MS had to bring out a patched version of win NT3.5, called NT3.51 basically to run Office 95. Later there was even a free Explorer Shell preview for NT3.51, which was more stable than NT 4.0 as it stupidly moved GDI into Kernel to improve video games (hardly seen on NT till XP due to Win9x being more suited and much cheaper for gamers).

So I guess MS stupidity dates back to Win9x vs NT feature drift in 1995-1997.

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Mage
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Mushroom

Re: 22% in a year isnt bad for a free OS

It would be amazing for a Free OS. But we are talking about the first free upgrade version of Windows, and it being PUSHED, not people choosing to actually go get it like Linux or Firefox. Windows is not a Free OS, even though for a year people almost forced to have a free upgrade

So it's abysmal performance from the company that once had 20% of smartish phones in USA (CE based), most PDAs and about 98% of desktop. Their Server share too has plummeted since 2006.

Basically they lost the plot in 2003-2004. Vista didn't meet expectations of what was promised in 2003, it was so bad that Win7 was really a bug fix. Windows 7 SHOULD have been free to Vista users. Win8 was to converge Desktop and phone/tablet, a truly stupid idea given the radically different screen size, touch inappropriate on a desktop and serious multi-window applications vs full screen applets of phone and tablet. So they damaged the desktop product for a market (phones) that they have now lost utterly. Win10 is attempt to combine Google slurping and Adobe rental in a Cloud infrastructure, more appropriate for a phone or tablet than a desktop, turning desktop OS into a Chromebook!

It was ALWAYS stupid having ONE branding (Windows) for different form factors and use cases. Amazon is making this mistake now with eBooks and eReaders as Kindle eInk devices can't now read all content sold under Kindle eBook branding, and "Kindle" Fire (an Android Tablet with Amzon instead of Play Store) and "Kindle" Apps have quite different functionality and are not simply other device simulations of real eInk based Kindle eReaders. There seems now to be three different kinds of eBook sold under "Kindle" branding. Only one kind works on real eReaders. IDIOTS. They need DIFFERENT branding for things that are different, even if under the eBook/Amazon Umbrella.

Microsoft has learnt NOTHING from the débâcles of Win ME, Vista, changing Win Phone Internals, confusing Surface brand and strategy (ARM and x86). The surviving MS pro Tablet is basically a form of x86 Ultrabook.

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Russian spy aircraft are flying over Britain – and the MoD's cool with it

Mage
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majority still use antiquated film cameras

Ha...

Maybe officially?

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Cortana expelled from Windows 10's new school editions

Mage
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Headmaster

Re: K12? Google Docs

Frying pan to Fire.

They should be using Linux and Libre Office. Certainly Linux Mint + Mate + Wine + Redmond Theme is maybe a little poorer than XP, still, but it's MILES better than Vista, Win8 or Win10 for Education.

Then there would also be more money to spend on teaching. Maybe 20 years ago there was some argument to have Apple or MS rather than Linux/UNIX for Education, not now. Google, MS, Apple and Amazon are trojan horses in Education.

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Remix chomps Marshmallow, updates its Android for PCs

Mage
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Internet

" Samsung 3G one - so your WiFi argument is out of the window. Or, I could just tether my phone via USB, or use a MiFi."

Rich person that can afford mobile data

Lucky person that has decent mobile signal.

Google Docs? Not Private. It's for collaboration of stuff that's going to be public. A truly stupid solution for a programmer or novel writer.

The whole use case of a Chromebook is to harvest user data even more than Android. Linux works fine on stuff better than a tablet / phone. There is no reason at all for ChromeOS other than Google exploitation.

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Mage
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Re: The Right thing

Chromebooks stink

They are based on the concept of cheap always on Internet / Cloud.

Real local applications are an after thought.

If you don't have reliable 24x 7 Web with back up forget Chromebook

If you want control of your own data and a even just a decent local wordprocessor, forget chromebook.

It's a web client disguised as a netbook.

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Apple Watch exec Bob Mansfield 'gets into secret Apple car'

Mage
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Car?

Apple competing with Tesla is slightly more believable than competing with Ford, GM, Toyota, Nissan or VW.

Still hard to fathom.

But then they did make a pointless watch. I wonder does an Apple car only unlock with an Apple iPhone?

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Yahoo! She said yes. Verizon confirms $4.8bn acquisition

Mage
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what exactly is Verizon buying?

Yahoo Groups, Yahoo Mail and any other user email addresses and IP addresses and "client" usages, for Verizon's targeted ad business.

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BBC will ‘retain your viewing history’

Mage
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Re: It's for marketing...

Certainly if you are not using UK IP address they sell stuff and give you 3rd party adverts.

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White House to bung electric car industry $4.5bn in loans

Mage
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Electric car grants

All the tax payers subsidising the rich.

Electric charging for the masses needs a MASSIVE upgrade of the entire grid.

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Free Windows 10 upgrade: Time is running out – should you do it?

Mage
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Re: Really... you think we should??? Honest???

Because Win7 was bug fix of Vista. It was still slower on same HW as a PROPERLY configured XP.

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Mage
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Re: am i the only one resisting this

I looked at Vista, 7, 8, 10.

I've sorted other people's computers.

Win XP is the last Windows I'm using.

Ages ago we went from Win2K Advanced server -> Server 2003, then back to win2k (for the MS SUS or something), then to Debian.

Using Linux Mint + Mate desktop on main PC now, since last year.

Vista was bad, but really apart from the Win7 SP to fix it, MS has only messed up of the last 10 years. Who wants a Win2.0 flat GUI and MS Office Ribbon either?

Morons.

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She wants it. She needs it. Shall I give it to her or keep doing it by myself?

Mage
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Re: Drag and drop between windows

@Kubla Cant

I do use Linux, since 1999.

No distro has a default FS that does that by default.

The default FS doesn't even let you see file creation dates easily (and only recently did EXT even store them). Yes, VMS was good and NTFS wouldn't have been too bad if they hadn't handed the NT OS over to the students and Interns that wrote Win95, It went downhill after NT3.51.

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Mage
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Drag and drop between windows

Did I update a backup or revert an old version?

Obviously EVERY drag and drop should be to a fresh directory. Now that we have 5T byte instead of 5M byte HDD, why does no FS by default keep all versions of all the files?

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World religions stake out positions on Pokemon Go

Mage
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Re: My tongue is dry from explaining to elderly what Pokemon Go is

Pokemon usage, either the original or the AR "Go" version is really nothing to do with being tech savvy. Replacing a fuse or tuning a TV needs way more tech knowledge.

It's a game.

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Apple Watch craze over before it started: Wrist-puter drags market screaming off a cliff

Mage
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Re: Could be...

No, people have realised that they are being mugged into buying a $25 gadget that's useless without an iPhone. There are models out there under $25 that are actually watches, work as phones on their own and have about x3 battery life, with micro SD and mini SIM holders inside.

Cost of a phone is highly dependent on screen size, then the phone radio hardware and phone patent royalty. A small screen wristlet with bluetooth only is a really cheap thing to make.

I'm amazed Apple are still selling any.

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Microsoft to rip up P2P Skype, killing native Mac, Linux apps

Mage
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Re: What are the real alternatives to Skype

Yes, but I just want reliable PRIVATE cross platform real time text chat, with occasional file drag & drop, image copy and paste, less often voice calls and least occasionally video.

All in one NON-Web client.

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Go catch Pokemon in this, nerds: Our space neighborhood of 1.2m galaxies mapped in 3D

Mage
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Alien

Fudge

Yes, Dark Energy and Dark Matter do appear to be Fudge related.

But MOND seems to be Hersheys "Chocolate". MOND doesn't even come close to being fudge or being a viable theory.

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It's not our fault we don't hire black people, says Facebook

Mage
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Devil

Alternatively ...

What about that people boycott Facebook.

They are not nice to work for and are a parasite on the Internet creating a walled garden, stealing people's privacy and exploiting it. Perhaps Black, Hispanic and Women care more about the morality of who they work for?

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EU eyes flaw in Google’s cash machine

Mage
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Advertising...

important to Google that EVERY service they offer, "free" or not, feeds into it.

I have sense of deja vu about this.

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Microsoft wins landmark Irish data slurp warrant case against the US

Mage
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Big Brother

Well, this is good.

Finally the USA realises the people outside the borders are not aliens, but foreigners, humans, with their own Governments and laws, even when the USA doesn't like them.

It's not like the USA is at war with Austria, Sweden, Ireland or Switzerland, all I think neutral countries in different ways.

Theresa May & Amber Rudd can make their own arrangements with CIA and FBI in a couple of years time.

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Congrats, Linux users – you're finally officially alpha males... on Skype

Mage
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Re: Pidgin QQ

I don't thnk it has supported QQ for ages, QQ changed API

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Mage
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Devil

2nd bad thing

Careful what you wish for on Linux. Windows Skype got so bad and such a resource hog I went to QQ. Sadly on Linux that only has a Chinese version I can't get working.

So what is cross platform, doesn't need a browser (or a server that might be spying on you), can do text, files, voice, video in any combination?

I don't want it based on desktop sharing etc like Teamview.

Going backwards

Skype used to be good (though a supernode was bad for unwary with fast good connection bu low cap), then eBay bought it. First bad thing.

Second bad Thing

It's gone downhill since MS bought it.

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Much more Moore's Law: Wonder-stuff graphene transistor trickery

Mage
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Re: Very thin?

Thinner conventional connections means higher resistance and more losses turned into heat, or indeed too slow or too much voltage drop (noise margin).

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Mage
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Re: Except... 40 MB hard disks?

First desktop 1980s had 5M Byte full height drives. They didn't have intel CPUs very often (8085)., 6502, 6809, Z80 etc.

I have a 10M MFM drive on an 8088 in the attic.

By 1991 the 20M was common and you had to use evil disk compression to get the 40M you needed for Windows.

The Actual IBM PC had one or two 180K SS or 360K SD SD 5.25" Floppies. Though Apple II had only 100K floppies. Some non-IBM computers had much higher capacity floppies (8" or 5.25") and hard drives. The XT was first IBM PC with an official hard drive (and was 10Mbyte).

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Mage
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Re: Except...

Mass production?

Translation of research time scales

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Mage
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Very thin?

However the issue isn't reducing the thickness of devices, but the area that is required on the chip.

I maybe scanned the article too quickly, but what area is the entire device compared to current ones?

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Samsung deals out microSD-crushing faster fingernail flash cards

Mage
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Re: Random access filing?

The Kobo Aura HD H2O and other devices use a standard micro SD card inside for the OS.

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Mage
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Re: Capacities: 256 MEGABYTE compact flash

I have 2M CF card and I remember early RAM + lithium battery 256K cards.

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Mage
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Adaptors?

ZIF PATA cable + controller for Aspire One?

or CF card format holder?

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FBI arrests satellite engineer on charges of espionage

Mage
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Blueprints?

I last saw those in the mid 80s. Then we changed to photocopies and CAD + plotter.

Must be old satellites?

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Drowning Dalek commands Siri in voice-rec hack attack

Mage
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Re: Hang on a second

"Wasn't there a kids toy robot thingy which "reacted" to audio codes in the (cunningly linked) TV cartoon ?"

It's called a smartphone.

They can embed signals within the passband of digital audio on TV that are too high frequency for most adults to hear.

Some Apps have the code to call the "mothership" so they know what you are watching. MUCH easier than voice recognition. Possibly Facebook App, it uses the microphone?

WiFi Barbie is a little scarier on the level of "Teddy always knows best" or whatever the Harry Harrison story was.

Phones (and some car radios) USED to have local voice recognition. Now it seems (on Android, Amazon Echo, Windows Phone and iOS) to be so called "cloud based". I have data mode on Mobile always disabled (to save money and for privacy) and wifi off by default (to save battery)

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SETI mulls reboot: Believing the strangest things, loving the alien

Mage
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Alien

Radio is daft.

Picking up radio is limited to a few light years range due to cosmic noise and inverse square law unless someone has massive dishes pointing straight at us. Even then the range isn't great. It's doubtful our own ordinary transmissions can even be received at the nearest star.

============

three basic questions:

1 How abundant and diverse is intelligent life in the universe?

2 How does intelligent life communicate?

3 How can we detect intelligent life?

============

1) We can't answer the first question at all.

2) No communications method we know is practical for interstellar distances, so forget this question, it's irrelevant. We aren't going to "eavesdrop". The inverse square law and Shannon's law mean that's probably impossible.

3) The only current practical method for Interstellar distances is spectroscopy. You are using the power of a star as the remote transmitter and detecting the adsorption in the atmosphere of a planet transiting between us and the star. Not all planets will transit between us and stars.

Unless we discover a whole new branch of physics we are limited to spectroscopy. We need to have no preconceived ideas and examine each spectrograph. Oxygen and carbon Dioxide has a signature. If there are additional chemicals that seem to be in unnatural proportions, we might conclude we have found possible evidence.

How do we communicate if we thing we have found life? Radio or Laser won't work, too far even if they were "looking" in our direction. We can send a probe that takes hundreds or thousands of years to get there.

We can't know if we discover unknown stuff in the future that allows "ansibles", stargates, warp drive, artificial wormholes or "jump" drive. Those are all SF today. Contrary to popular belief, Quantum Entanglement can't be used for instant communications but only to verify a light speed message hasn't been tampered with.

So Spectroscopy.

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The Great Brain Scan Scandal: It isn’t just boffins who should be ashamed

Mage
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Re: Other fads - Deap Learning

Sound to me that "Deep Learning" in Google's Go machine is mostly human curated database.

Google are database experts that sell adverts, I'd be sceptical of any AI claims by Facebook or Google, given their "truth" record and their business models.

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Mage
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Other fads

Also computer "Neural Networks" may be totally unrelated to how real brains work. AI learning is unrelated to how biological creatures work.

We still don't really know what intelligence is.

Most AI (all?) is merely simulation of real world activities in a very narrow domain. Let me know when your Go playing computer can learn poker or playing an instrument just by natural learning, no sneaking round the back and adding more libraries.

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OpenCellular: Facebook tests its open templates on base stations

Mage
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Big Brother

Yuck

So what advantage has this over existing cheap products that Facebook hasn't left yucky paw prints on?

There are loads of PROPER tech / RF companies doing this stuff. Why do we need a parasitical advertising privacy sucking social media website doing this?

Why are they doing it?

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Etch a stretch: 3D NAND layer cake flop leads to 'string stacking'

Mage
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TEM?

maybe high speed stepping of position or multiple beam X-ray or Electrons or UV lasers?

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Linux letting go: 32-bit builds on the way out

Mage
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it's a waste of time

Rubbish.

One of the great values of Linux is an x86 32bit version for embedded x86 and older hardware. Why should I replace perfectly working HW at huge expense for crappy modern stuff that has no parallel or serial or PS/2 ports etc. Or no PCMCIA/Cardbus slot.

This is about 10 to 20 years too soon.

Third party issues?

"This includes things like Google Chrome, Docker"

Not interest in those ANYWAY, especially on the 32 bit legacy HW and applications.

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London Stock Exchange's German mega-merger: It's a go, despite Brexit

Mage
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Re: london is still the financial centre of the world

Till Article 50 ...

You can't put the clock back to 1973 by leaving EU. It's not 1947 either.

In the long term, if Brexit comes to pass (seems hard to avoid it now), the UK's International parasites will move out, the Import and re-export to Ireland and other traditional UK markets with no added value will end. The illusion of UK being 5th or 6th largest economy will be exposed (it's a little like Ireland being the largest banana exporter in the world, which they were or are despite growing none). Scotland will leave UK and N.I. will riot as it goes to 20%+ unemployment and bankruptcy due to a tighter border than ever existed after 1922, no CTA or shared currency as there was 1922 - 1979.

The papers and Politicians are still full of unrealistic optimism that can only be realised by cancelling "Brexit"

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Mage
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Re: Distance matters...

Dublin & Frankfurt.

Or even Galway or Cork and Frankfurt. New cable at Mayo and T connection to Cork, on transatlantic fibres.

What with all the other Internationals that will exit UK to EU (Vodafone, HSBC and many others already muttering about moving), Sterling may become unimportant. It's hard to see how UK can avoid invoking Article 50 before the end of the year. I wish it wasn't, but wishful thinking won't avoid it. That's how the mess was created.

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Verisign keeps its dot-com cash cow until 2024

Mage
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Re: Greed

Yes, look at price of .ie if you want to see greed!

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Can Ireland's grid green satisfy Facebook and Apple?

Mage
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irrelevant since the datacenter is an expense?

Really?

So how come most of Amazon's profit is from them?

Why build them to sell cloud services?

Yes, they have a running cost, but that just reduces the lots of profit they earn.

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