* Posts by Adair

286 posts • joined 23 Jan 2008

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90 per cent of the UK's NHS is STILL relying on Windows XP

Adair

Re: Maybe they should consider going over to Linux?

@timul20 - But that is really my point: the NHS has always been shambling bureaucratic 'Frankenstein's monster'; a cobbled together collection of institutions and services all operating under the politically useful collective known as 'NHS'.

The dependence on bought in services, without any overall long term planning or structure, is symptomatic of that approach.Down the line, we are all reaping the consequences.

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, of course, but so also would be politicians who know when to engage, enable, and sustain people who genuinely have a clue. But in the 'real world' that hardly ever happens.

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Adair

Re: Maybe they should consider going over to Linux?

@Kubla Cant

That's only one of many possibilities compatible with <REAL_WORLD>, and not so very different to the one that has actually occurred.

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Adair

Re: Maybe they should consider going over to Linux?

@itzman

Just a point of economic reality. if an institution as large as the NHS, with a commensurate budget, chose to use OS 'Z', there would be no shortage of vendors only too willing to write drivers, etc. for their equipment to run on OS 'Z'.

It's all about the money, these people are not in the game for the good of their health, or anybody else's for that matter. And even the few that are focussed on putting human wellbeing ahead of profit, would still happily supply OS 'Z' compatible equipment for an institution the size of the NHS.

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Adair

Re: Maybe they should consider going over to Linux?

@Daniel von Asmuth

Linux is not Windows - I think you misunderstand how it works.

For a start: Slackware, Debian, Red Hat all started in1993 (23 years). The thing is, if you are serious about running a serious long term computing platform across a massive and diverse institutional environment, you are serious about taking the source, and setting it up for your own use, and maintaining it.

If the NHS had sat down, formed an OS development team, taken a base Linux distro, and gone on to build their own bespoke system on top of it they could by now be sitting on a highly developed, relatively very secure and stable OS that they would be in control of and that would offer a common platform for the whole NHS to work with.

Unfortunately that kind of foresight and organisation was not deployed, so we are where we are.

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Adair

Re: 'up'grading is overrated

@JamesPond - given the level of 'IT expertise' available to the average NHS staff member the particular OS they are using could hardly be less relevant.

In my experience the vast majority of people only care about the actual software package they use; in the sense of 'care' meaning: are the buttons in the same place today, that they were yesterday, and do they do the things I expect them to do?

Interaction with the system outside of that very limited scope is practically non-existent for most users, i.e. they have no idea at all how a computer works, and they don't care. All they want to do is get their job done.

This is why so may folks find change in IT even more terrifying than other kinds of change---a computer might as well be a magic box as far as they are concerned.

So, changing the OS? No big deal at all, the pain of change will be the same as if you changed the only software package they use day in day out.

We've just had a whole lot of IT application and OS changes in our Trust. The screams could probably be heard from the Moon. That was six months ago. Today? It's the new normal, not even a whimper (well maybe, but only a whimper).

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Adair

The Linux option...

Probably a good idea, but one that would require actual planning and organisation.

'NHS-Linux' - their own spin, continually developed, tested, distributed, and under their control. How it might have been done, and done well, but it wasn't.

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Kids' Hour of Code turns into a giant corporate infomercial for kids

Adair

Re: Minecraft as a way to force Win 10 in education

Just use Minetest -- www.minetest.net

Problem of MS solved.

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Facebook Fake News won it for Trump? That's a Zombie theory

Adair

Why bother with Facebook anyway?

Even my children (all in their 20s) have given up. Tumbleweeds roll through their pages, which they retain simply to keep up with one or two real, but distant, friends who insist on persevering with the disgusting suck. Entangled tumbleweeds are the only things that have ever had the misfortune to inhabit my own page, which, now that my progeny have essentially moved on, has no reason for existing.

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Microsoft just got its Linux Foundation platinum card, becomes top level member

Adair

The Linux Foundation - it's done!

Somebody, stick a fork in it.

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Let's praise Surface, not bury it

Adair

'You're looking at the market wrong' [fixed]

[overcoming shoddy educational practice one post at a time: 'your' is a possessive pronoun; 'you're' is a contraction of 'you are' -- completely different meanings]

:-)

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Microsoft goes back to the drawing board – literally, with 28" tablet and hockey puck knob

Adair

Re: The silver hockey puck works on and off the screen.

@Mage - I'm with Mage on this. Their critics come across as Millennials who are used to having everything handed to them on a plate.

Surely the whole point of GENERAL PURPOSE COMPUTING is that it is, well, you know: general purpose; in other words you are free to do what you like, rather than only what someone else thinks is good for you (which usually translates as: what they think will be good for their bank balance).

Inch by bleeding inch Microsoft is dragging it's OS and associated application echo system away from that hairy jungle of user freedom (relatively speaking) into that nice safe walled garden where the user's data and money are kept warm and dry and heading in the right direction.

Shiny is as shiny does: distracts from what is really going on.

One day Microsoft will be history. That day is still a long way off. When it comes there will be a new MS to take its place. The question is: how many people will actually notice or care. Too many today seem absorbed in their latest shiny and have no idea, or just don't care, about what is happening around them.

Oh, brave new world, that has such people in it.

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Who killed Cyanogen?

Adair

Re: "try to leverage its market power"

Yep, 'use' covers that pretty well, as in: "I feel used!". ;-)

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New Brit Hubble analysis finds 2,000 billion galaxies, 10x previous count

Adair

Re: Fairy Cake

Unless 'size' is what does it for you 'size' does not correlate to 'significance'.

For example: instead of 'size' let's say 'complexity', in which case at a stroke your 'significance' just went through the roof because a human being is one of, if not the most, complex thing we know about (galaxies, in comparison, are relatively simple).

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Citizens don't trust UK.GOV with their data

Adair

This seems like a timely moment...

to remind readers of this little gem: http://tinyurl.com/z6trkad

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HP Ink COO: Sorry not sorry we bricked your otherwise totally fine printer cartridges

Adair

@Dr Syntax - It always helps to read the article to the very end:

'...Crucially, a fix is promised to reverse the damage. According to Flaxman:

As a remedy for the small number of affected customers, we will issue an optional firmware update that will remove the dynamic security feature. We expect the update to be ready within two weeks and will provide details here.

Alternatively, you can vent your anger at print-hpi@hp.com. ®'

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BBC to demand logins for iPlayer in early 2017

Adair

Just stop using Flash!

Please.

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Narcissist Heidi Powell wants her dot-com and she wants it now, now, NOW!

Adair

Je suis Heidi Powell

enough said

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Google's become an obsessive stalker and you can't get a restraining order

Adair

Re: Do people care?

@BenR - Which is brilliant, and there's no reason at all why your phone (and mine) shouldn't be allowed (by us) to log that data and store it for however long (set by us) for whatever we need to use it for. It's the slurp, isn't it? 'They' have decided, in their self-interested paternalistic way what 'they' will do with 'my' phone and 'my' data, usually regardless of whether I want them to or not, and often without even telling me, or giving me any means of intervening.

It's 'free' they say; good, so I'm 'free' to do whatever I like with 'their' system; but it's a shame it's so bloody inconvenient. Hopefully, over time, the means to take back control will become easier, but only a relative few are ever likely to be interested. It'll take something disastrous to shift the level of complacency that most of us show towards our phones, and our data generally.

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'Second Earth' exoplanet found right under our noses – just four light years away

Adair

Nope, the sample size of planets with verifiable evidence of life on them is currently one.

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Adair

Nope, the odds haven't budged one iota, and I use that non-numerical term deliberately because, with a sample of exactly ONE, plus still no definitive understanding of how life actually began here, we have absolutely no idea what the 'odds' actually are for finding life anywhere else, or how to calculate them. All we can say at the moment is that there is 'life' on Earth. Statistics are a bugger.

Until we have actual evidence all we have is speculation, and anyone who says otherwise is either lying or doesn't understand the present situation.

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Google Fuchsia OS eyes non-Linux things

Adair

In the end...

it's all about control, or, in other words, follow the money.

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Microsoft's kinder, gentler collaboration war: Evernote, you're first

Adair

What I would pay for...

is a service aggregation portal, where I can pay, say 5£/month and tick 4 well known services, or £10/month for 10 services, or something along those lines, to cover useful services that I probably don't use continuously, but I find invaluable when needed.

In fact the model could be highly adaptable to suit user needs, but it would work on overall volume of traffic, hence the 'low' per user cost.

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Some Windows 10 Anniversary Update: SSD freeze

Adair

Re: however infuriating the status quo may be

@AC - 'If Windows was only the OS...'

There are thousands of applications available for Linux (excluding the ones that run perfectly through WINE), and many of them are far superior to the hobbled proprietory alternatives available on Windows, but so what?

The thing is your argument only really holds water for those situations that match your case, and that includes mindset---if you are determined that something won't work it probably won't.

So, I don't really understand your point. Clearly Linux works for many people, and Windows works for many people. Windows also 'works' for many in the sense that as far as they are concerned it's the only choice they have, because they lack the awareness, the knowledge, the interest, or even the choice to use anything different.

As has already been said Linux is not a panacea---all OSes are crap in their own way---it's a case of understanding why you are using the OS you are using, and understanding whether any of the alternatives would serve your needs better, notwithstanding the crappiness.

Anyone who turns the decision into a religious war deserves all they get.

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Adair

Re: Where are all the MS apologists?

@AC - 'Personally, I'm massively impressed...'

I suspect you're onto something, but even so perhaps for those who know Linux as well as others know Windows the challenge and trouble is rather less than for anyone who is eyeing Linux as though it is a foreign land.

Certainly Linux is no panacea, anyone contemplating a wholesale switch really needs to know why it will be so much better for them than maintaining the status quo, however infuriating the status quo may be.

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Adair

Re: Why doesn't Win10 support multiple drives better

@TRT - plausible, but idiosyncratic.

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Adair

Re: Where are all the MS apologists?

@JustEnough - No, no, no, no - you are completely misunderstanding.

While there are some Linux zealots who misguidedly believe that it's all about knocking Windows off its perch, the truth is far more subversive. Windows deserves its place, its perfectly entitled to exist, and has a lot going for it - although the way MS are behaving you would begin to doubt it.

The last thing we need is for Linux to become the new Windows - meet the new boss, same as the old boss. No, what we need is for a capitalist profit driven corporate multi-national entity to learn what the word 'responsibility' means, and then to apply that learning in an ethical manner towards its customers. If they can do that they may have a long term future.

As for GNU/Linux - all it needs to do is to carry on being GNU/Linux.

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Adair

Re: Why doesn't Win10 support multiple drives better

Pedant's corner - just for the record, and to avoid any future embarrassment, it's 'moot', not 'mute'.

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Boffins' blur-busting face recognition can ID you with one bad photo

Adair

Only if that's the way you think.

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Breaking 350 million: What's next for Windows 10?

Adair

Re: Pacman & cancer

@TimmyB - broadly speaking wrong on all three counts; and are you seriously implying that the 'Windows experience' is so much better? You're havin' a giraffe, aren't you? If you're serious you really do need to get out more.

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Windows 10 still free, even the Anniversary Update, if you're crass

Adair

Re: Missing option in survey

* No, I am using an OS that does not treat its users as if they are irresponsible infants.

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

Adair

Have a look at Jitsi

(see title)

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Microsoft ordered to fix 'excessively intrusive, insecure' Windows 10

Adair

Re: Apple

If Linux isn't 'refined enough' then certainly neither are Windows nor OS-X.

For the record: ALL OSes are steaming piles of digital poo.

Which ever one you pick you have to be willing to get your hands (and/or your conscience) dirty keeping the whole steaming pile up and running. That's the way it is.

By all means prefer one (or more) over others, but don't make it a religious issue, and don't pretend that your preferred pile of poo stinks any less than anyone else's, because it doesn't - it just stinks differently, but stink it surely does, even if you have got so used to it you don't really notice any more.

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Windows 10 a failure by Microsoft's own metric – it won't hit one billion devices by mid-2018

Adair

FWIW

My daughter built her own Linux based desktop system to go off to uni with, four years ago. Apart from having to get the uni IT dept to allow her a 'non-Windows, non-wizard'(!) login to the WiFi system she had no problems whatsoever using LO for 'Word' based notes/essays/projects. In her case it turned out most of the specialist software used for her Linguistics dissertation was Linux based anyway (with random Windows ports available), so it turned out to be an even bigger win.

We bought her a Chromebook for portable use, and used Crouton to load Linux on that as well. That little device has now been passed on to my son who is now at uni.

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Avast woos AVG shareholders with $1.3bn buyout offer

Adair

Re: Anti-virus =

Just for the record: it went exactly as I intended.

None of us like being reminded that we have chosen (or even been compelled) to hitch our wagon to a three legged mule, while the person next to us is all set up with something having the optimum number of legs, the required strength and breeding, and is merrily getting the job done instead of cursing and sweating trying to get any reliable forward motion at all!

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Adair

Anti-virus =

one humongous scam, trading on the ignorance, fear, paranoia, the bad behaviour of the computing public, and too often on the criminal shoddiness of the underlying OS. As with all goldrushes, it's the folk selling the shovels and the food (usually made of the most rubbish materials) who make all the money.

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5 years, 2,300 data breaches. What'll police do with our Internet Connection Records?

Adair

Re: If you have nothing to hide . . .

Six gigabytes!

Bloomin' 'eck, that would be enough to have them hung, drawn, and quartered, their head put on a spike over the gates of the city, their family sold into slavery to the googleplex, and their existence erased from the record. And all at taxpayers' expense.

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Celebrated eye hospital Moorfields lets Google eyeball 1 million scans

Adair

Re: Retinal identification as a consequence?

Re: 'shrooms' - that's usually a convenient explanation for anyone who can't be bothered to find out what 'Revelations', or the family of literature it belongs to - 'apocalyptic', are actually all about.

So, no - the writer almost certainly wasn't 'on the shrooms', but knew exactly what he was on about. Even if we struggle to comprehend it today, in it's day the imagery and allusions would have made perfectly good sense to anyone educated in the 'language'.

For a modern example, although generally far less lurid, we only need to look at some of the writings of people under violently oppressive governments to see how imagery and 'code words' - perfectly innocent to the uninformed reader - are used to communicate effectively. Apocalyptic is another style all together, but the intent is largely the same.

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Lightning strikes: Britain's first F-35B supersonic fighter lands

Adair

Re: Harriers

'Our Carriers ar Diesel powered.' - point of information, but as I understand 'our carriers' are in fact electrically powered, primarily via Rolls Royce gas turbines, but with diesel ancillary/backup generators.

In principle this would have made them ideal candidates for the electro-magnetic catapults being fitted to the latest US carriers. Unfortunately filthy lucre and bureaucratic incompetence may have intervened.

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'I urge everyone to fight back' – woman wins $10k from Microsoft over Windows 10 misery

Adair

That's exactly the point - she shouldn't have to have done ANY of those things! Unless she CHOSE to, and could reasonably be expected to know how to - which as an average normal user she almost certainly won't.

This is an operating system, not some bit of junkware, where you hope for the best and take what you get... oh.sorry, it's Windows. But still.

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Adair

It's about time.

Nothing more to say really.

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Thunder struck: Apple kills off display line

Adair

Those...

who sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither. - B. Franklin.

(or words very close to that effect)

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Minecraft marketing mods miff Mojang

Adair

Regain a little dignity...

and use Minetest - www.minetest.net.

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Intel's new plan: A circle that starts in your hand and ends in the cloud

Adair

We will, we will...

OWN YOU!!!

We all know where this is going - the parasitic corporates permanently feeding off billions of bank accounts, as they already do only more so. Because, when it comes to greed, money, and power, you can never have enough.

"'Service', oh yes, that's something we throw in to let the proles attached to the accounts feel they are getting something in return. Otherwise they tend to complain. Now, how's my latest mega-yacht coming along - it's bound to be bigger than yours?"

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Samsung: Don't install Windows 10. REALLY

Adair

Re: What an absolute

Well, on my Samsung laptop the current iteration of Mint is working flawlessly, and did so from the start, i.e. all required drivers were installed automatically by default, so rather easier than installing Windows, of any iteration.

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SHOCK: GM crops are good for you and the planet, reckon boffins

Adair

Follow the money...

Regardless of the technical pros and cons of each GM project we can absolutely rely on the historical truth that where there is a buck to be made there will be people willing to bend/break the rules, regardless of the consequences (assuming they even know what the consequences will be) in order to make a bigger buck.

Factor in 'global corporates' instead of individual people, and that historical truth is grossly magnified in terms of the unintended consequences and tolerable 'collateral damage' to individuals and communities.

GM is just another way of making money. In this case though, as with other major tech, caveat emptor applies not just to the buyer, but to everyone. No doubt there will be the odd 'technical failure', disaster even; but it's on the economic and social sides that any real damage is most likely to occur. Greed and self-interest have always been powerful drivers towards major fuck ups.

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ZFS comes to Debian, thanks to licensing workaround

Adair

Plenty of FUD...

being applied to the GPL. I wonder why that could possibly be?

The GPL certainly doesn't fit with some people's idea of 'freedom', but then, glory be, they are free not to use it. But, then, if they do find it cramping their proprietorial instincts, money making desires, or simply their freedom to do what the hell they like with someone else's work they can always go away and write their own code, or maybe pay someone else to do it for them.

The GPL attempts, quite successfully, to represent a certain philosophical and ethical position. If we don't understand it, or agree with it, that's fine, we are 'free' to go our own way.

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Kepler space telescope spots 1,284 new planets

Adair

Oh dear...

A great story of exploration and discovery, and BTL immediately hijacked by the 'anti-God' fundamentalists. It's like the trope about 'Linux evangelists' hijacking every thread about Windows (see Ask Jack in the Guardian), only sadder.

While there definitely are some people whose religious views struggle to cope with a bigger awareness of the material 'world', there are plenty for whom it is no threat to their faith whatsoever, in fact it is a wonderful example of putting our capabilities to good use - exploring and understanding the world around us.

Some folk here need to prick their bubble of ignorance and prejudice and try engaging with 'reality', but then perhaps they are not really any different to the very type of person they deride on the other side of the fence - those who, from a 'religious' perspective, also cling to their prejudices and 'beliefs' regardless of the reality around them.

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New Firefox versions will make you activate all new add-ons – except one hacker favourite

Adair

Use of a 'user agent switcher' (other names are available) is an inelegant, but workable, solution to the BBC problem. The BBC serves HTML5 video to devices purporting to be using Android and other 'mobile' OSes.

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Google AI gains access to 1.2m confidential NHS patient records

Adair

Re: To all the critics

Planty, please tell us where you would draw the line on state intrusion into private life?

BTW, we all die, happily this also includes the corrupt capitalist brigands who presume to own us.

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