* Posts by Brian Morrison

853 posts • joined 4 Feb 2008

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German boffins' clock drops 10 seconds in a billion-and-a-half years

Brian Morrison
Facepalm

Re: Not good enough

And now you know why Zarquon only arrived when it was too late to do anything useful.

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Android Pay debuts in UK

Brian Morrison

Re: Just activated here in the UK...

Not at all, I registered a couple this morning. All I had to do was to enter the CVV for the cards already on my Google account. You get a text with a security code to ensure that it's your phone.

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Brian Morrison

Re: Just activated here in the UK...

I think its real value will be when I nip to my local supermarket and realise that I've left my wallet at home but have my phone with me.

We'll see how useful this will be in a few months/years...

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Android's security patch quagmire probed by US watchdogs

Brian Morrison

The G3 is currently updated to Android 6.0 Marshmallow with security fixes from March 2016 IIRC.

These should appear as OTA updates, they certainly have for carrier G3 models in the UK.

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Investigatory Powers Bill: As supported by world's most controlling men

Brian Morrison

Re: To all at, and involved with the coalition...

You already are on their list, along with everyone else...

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Lauri Love backdoor forced-decryption case goes to court in UK

Brian Morrison

Re: "Laurie Love backdoor"

Likkie? You're not one of Rimmer's Z shift by any chance?

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Brian Morrison
Big Brother

The important point about this court case is that the gubmint, actually the NCA acting on their behalf, is trying to compel key disclosure using a direction under a civil case instead of using the RIPA procedure under s49.

The reason for this is because the RIPA method has built in legal and procedural safeguards whereas the civil direction does not. So they're using one law to get around another law that makes it too difficult for the NCA to get what it wants, Lauri Love is trying to get his computers back, this is the back strike from the NCA to try and get what they couldn't before. Note that the original order had expired with no apparent action by the NCA.

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Dropping 1,000 cats from 32km: How practical is that?

Brian Morrison

You've just invented perpetual motion - hovering, rotating cats just waiting for their angular momentum to be harvested.

At least until the toast has gone cold and the butter has been absorbed into it and can't stain the carpet any more.

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Blighty starts pumping out 12-sided quids

Brian Morrison
Thumb Up

Really looking forward to the time when we decide to return to having 240 pence in the pound and bring back the litter of non-sensical coins that went with it.

Let this dodecaquid be only the beginning!

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EE most 'reliable' mobile provider for cities – Ofcom

Brian Morrison

Re: Can we have a proper checker?

I think it's quite nice to be able to select the networks individually, if they were all selected at once then the map would be quite difficult to interpret. I notice that the signal type and location selections are persistent so it's 1 click to change networks.

In the case of my home postcode it's mostly uncovered for 4G data, the best network is O2 but their coverage engineers have been very sneaky because the border between 4G indoors and nothing literally follows the postcode boundary. Naturally outside the postcode boundary is mainly grass and open spaces, the houses are all inside it.

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Brazil gets a WTF WhatsApp moment

Brian Morrison

Re: Whatsapp, Facebook and Google

WhatsApp is not free, after the first year it costs a small amount each year to use it.

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'Fairly bad core bug' crushed in Linux 4.4-rc5

Brian Morrison

Re: Difference of opinion

Note that this is a bug introduced and fixed in the same 4.4rc series, so it will only affect people who use these kernels for testing.

Had this been in a released kernel then it would have merited more attention perhaps.

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Whitman's split: The end of Fiorina's HP grand expansion era

Brian Morrison

Ah, you mean Keysight. They were Agilent for many years, although that was an anagram of genital.

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Patch this braXen bug: Hypervisor hole lets guest VMs hijack hosts

Brian Morrison

Re: entanglement of C macros

Except that many sandboxed languages have been found to allow access outside the sandbox on multiple occasions. In the end it only needs one unpatched vulnerability and it's goodnight Vienna!

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Time Lords set for three-week battle over leap seconds

Brian Morrison

Because we've defined it in terms of oscillations in the caesium atom and that's tied to the speed of light in vacuum.

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Cops use terror powers to lift BBC man's laptop after ISIS interview

Brian Morrison

Re: Note to those who don't want to be subject to RIPA

Perverting the course of justice I should think...

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Bacon can kill: Official

Brian Morrison
Mushroom

I intend...

...to live for ever while eating bacon or die trying

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GCHQ can and will spy on politicos, rules tribunal

Brian Morrison

Re: MPs

A higher power than either of those.

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Researcher messes up Wi-Fi with an rPi and bargain buy radio stick

Brian Morrison

Re: It's easy to jam 2.4Ghz

Because your video sender almost certainly wasn't using the spectrum very sensibly and a microwave can easily knock over something that is sending continuous signals. WiFi and Bluetooth are more resistant but there is a limit to how much.

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BlackBerry's tactical capitulation to Google buys time – and possibly a future

Brian Morrison

Re: App Availability

Android 6 will be changing and improving the permission model, you will be able to reject specific permissions on an app when they are first accessed after installation instead of the current model of agreeing to all or none during the install. Google have listened to the complaints although it's taken a while to do something about it.

The Priv does not yet state what version on Android it uses, is it 5.x or will it be 6? That might make a difference to how good the BB security added on actually is.

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BlackBerry emits Android mobe as biz goes down the Priv

Brian Morrison

Last roll of the dice?

It's hard to tell how good, or otherwise, the Priv will be, personally I don't feel the need for a physical keyboard any more for typing but it may well be great for shortcuts. The risk is that, like the Torch 9800 the sliding aspect will result in a failure of the connections between the two parts.

As for the software, until I see what the Android/BB linking is like in the OS I can't say that I would even consider this, and the previously BB-cheering member of my household switched to Android some months ago as the Z10 aged and the associated contract reached upgrade time.

Sorry BB, but I think that the hardware side of the business is probably going to gradually disappear within the next couple of years. And that's a shame...

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Apple slings bug-fixed iOS 9.0.1 at fanbois, PIN bypass hole still open

Brian Morrison

Re: Amazing....

El Reg are always right there with criticism of crap technology and poor head work.

Keep up at the back!

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Blighty's Bloodhound 1,000mph rocket car unveiled ahead of record attempt

Brian Morrison
Mushroom

Re: My old Nova GTE would take it

I'm glad that it was only the Nova that bought it when you hit that tree...!

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Long-memoried boffins re-invent 1950s ferroelectric tech

Brian Morrison

Re: The "good"old days

We had the GEC 4020 assemblies with thermite charge markings (no actual thermite charges though), these used core store so an initiated thermite charge was used to take them above the Curie point and effectively zero them. Would have been in the Nimrod AEW3 if it had been continued with, although the computer in the real systems would have been a 4060 to make it a bit faster.

If memory serves the whole shebang was contained in a pretty thick walled unit to try to contain the 3,000 C temperatures for long enough to comprehensively knacker things, meanwhile the Nimrod crew would have been doing whatever they did when a forced landing behind enemy lines was on the cards.

Airshows aren't the same now the Cold War is over...

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All in all, it's just another hit in the stalls: Roger Waters The Wall

Brian Morrison

Re: Meh

Indeed. <puts on black cap> "You will be taken to a place of execution, where you will be hanged by the neck until you are dead!"

Pre-1965 of course.

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Brian Morrison

Re: Ye Gods

We have all become, Uncomfortably Numb...

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Wi-Gig signals are bouncing off the walls, can't settle on the sofa

Brian Morrison

Why 60GHz? Well, good question...

...the answer seems to be that the original idea to use this spectrum may have come from Plessey, I remember seeing it in the early to mid 1980s with 6-sector antennas mounted on office partitions (in concept, there was no working hardware). 60GHz is an oxygen absorption line so there is much higher than R-squared attenuation on the RF path. This is deliberate for frequency reuse reasons, so the problem with non-LoS and narrow beam antennas is only part of the issue.

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Three VoLTEs to victory as it jumps into UK 4G voice offering

Brian Morrison

You may find that the Project Fi version for the Nexus 6 does what you want. It should be possible to download and install it even if that means you have to reinstall your data.

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Stardock’s Start10 brings the familiarity of 7 to Windows 10

Brian Morrison

Always happy to support Stardock and Brad...

...because he was always there providing excellent OS/2 WPS add-ons back in the day and he's a jolly good bloke.

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IWF shares 'hash list' with web giants to flush out child sex abuse images online

Brian Morrison

As you no doubt realise, if it was flagged as CP originally then that simple fact can be used to make everyone else care not-a-jot about the consequences of that mis-identification.

It was pr0n then, so it's pr0n now! Filthy, mucky stuff! Ick!!!

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Android faces SECOND patching crisis, on the same scale as Stagefright

Brian Morrison

There's a Certifi-gate vuln checker in the Play store. Says my Nexus 5 on 5.1.1 is not vulnerable.

All the big manufacturers are announcing monthly update patches now, looks like the era of panics of this nature will soon be over.

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Cher tells HTC: If I could turn back time ... if I could find a way (to not lose $250m in a quarter)

Brian Morrison

Re: Snapdragon?

Can't believe it can make this much difference.

810 is an 8 core big.little reference design on 20nm, first 64bit silicon from Qualcomm. The 820 will have Qualcomm's custom CPU 4 core design on 14nm and is faster on those 4 cores. There's the reason for the heat issues, although the HTC One M9 with the 810 doesn't get very warm after a couple of Android updates and is still very speedy.

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HAM IN SPAAAAAACE! ISS astronaut contacted by Gloucestershire bloke in garden shed

Brian Morrison

Shed?

Er, no, that's his shack...

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Ofcom wants to ease the pain of switching mobile networks. Good luck

Brian Morrison

Re: Of course.

I wonder whether your coverage limitations will be improved by the time the MNOs have met their 4G licence obligations at the end of 2017?

I'm not holding my breath, but I have to say that things have improved generally on my network (O2 based) in the last year or so.

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Hole in (Number) Two: MYSTERY golf-course pooper strikes again

Brian Morrison

Re: Must be a man because the poos are so big?

Or isn't, because in many cases the opposite is true, if you consider the physiology of women it's easy to understand why.

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What goes up, Musk comedown: Falcon rocket failed to strut its stuff

Brian Morrison

Re: The processes failed before the strut did

Something else; the 2nd stage centre-engine shut down that Apollo 13 suffered during launch was actually due to a pogo oscillation that reached 63g in amplitude and was within a second or two of causing a major structural failure when some consequence of the vibration caused the control system to close the propellant valves.

I think that this occurred after the Escape Tower had been jettisoned, so it would have been unsurvivable for the crew.

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Brian Morrison

Re: In-House is always better, it seems...

Which works if you have the necessary skill and knowledge, but otherwise could actually be worse than using an experienced contractor.

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Brian Morrison

Re: The third dimension

And as happened in California a few weeks ago, partly rotted timbers and a party that loaded a balcony beyond its reduced failure strength led directly to deaths among a group of Irish students.

These things are usually over-specified for a reason.

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'The server broke and so did my back on the flight to fix it'

Brian Morrison

Re: so he scoffed “a huge handful of ibuprofen and acetaminophen”

Actually what I think is "Why is it not sold with the antidote already in it?".

Methionine is the stuff that's needed, in some countries it is compulsory to supply paracetamol with the appropriate percentage included.

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Goodbye Vulcan: Blighty's nuclear bomber retires for the last time

Brian Morrison

Re: Pedantry

I don't think the RR takeover of Bristol engines was that hostile, it was more that they realised that with a shrinking market in the UK that providing international competition would be better served by a single manufacturer. The Hyfil fan blades then caused the RB211 to almost break the company and the taxpayer, but there was a lot more wrong with the RB211 than just the fan, it took Stanley Hooker coming out of retirement to help fix it because RR's engineering department had been weakened by the premature death of their chief engineer Adrian Lombard in 1967.

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Brian Morrison

Re: A "Pocket" Bomber

A Lancaster could just about carry a 22.000lb Grand Slam (with the wings in a gentle curve due to the weight) but the Vulcan was properly stressed to carry 21,000lb. The design bomb load for the Lanc was actually 14,000lb and that not all hanging on one bomb carrier.

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Brian Morrison

Re: Britains weapons designs

That was the Green Grass warhead used in the Yellow Sun bomb body that was called Violet Club in this combination. It was never tested and was regarded as unsafe because the amount of fissile material was greater than a critical mass and had the thin-walled shell of Plutonium been crushed it could have gone critical. The steel balls (not actually lead shot) weighed almost half a ton and filled the hollow Pu sphere to prevent accidental crushing. Only 5 were made.

Nearly all of the late 50s/early 60s air-dropped nukes in the UK arsenal were interim weapons, in some of the slightly later weapons the cores were stored in lead pits in the ground inside small buildings with roofs shaped so that they threw a similar shadow to a tree. Before flight the weapon had to have the core carried out and inserted into the weapon inside the bomb bay.

Remember that the Hiroshima Little Boy bomb could go critical if filled with water, it had a cadmium rod inserted for safety which was removed before being dropped, but even that might not have been enough if the aircraft carrying it had gone off the end of the runway into the sea on takeoff.

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Use snooped data in court? Nah, says UK.gov - folk might be cleared

Brian Morrison

Quite a shame that David Davis didn't beat Cameron to the Conservative party leadership.

He would get my vote every time if I were able to vote for him.

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Time to face the Apple Music: Spotify looks worried, and rightly so

Brian Morrison

Re: Not interested

I thought the great thing about these streaming services was that they have *all* the music there is, or a close approximation to that anyway.

For the cost of the subscription they charge I would be pretty miffed if more than 1 in 200 of the things I want to listen to isn't there. Otherwise I might just as well load my phone with music I've ripped from CDs.

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Config file wipe blunder caused deadly Airbus A400M crash – claim

Brian Morrison

Re: There's the problem...

Warnings are often inhibited during take-off to avoid the crew being expected to take action when they should be getting airborne and ensuring that they stay above V2, minimum safety speed. Once this is achieved they can they deal with the emergency/warnings and decide on their next course of action.

In this case the initial problem was that the 3 engines would not respond to a reduction in power demand, in the process of trying to arrest the rapid ascent/acceleration flight idle was selected and this then allowed the protection mechanism to engage and refuse to provide more power when commanded. By the time it became clear that the engines couldn't deliver more power there was not enough time to shut down and feather the 3 that were broken while having enough altitude and manoeuvre capability to reach the runway. The power lines were not likely to be easily visible from the air, once they committed to a forced landing any attempt to miss them would probably have resulted in an even heavier arrival and more structural damage.

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Brian Morrison

To some extent yes, but there is also the desire to keep some good engineering people in employment and maintain the ability to build this sort of thing again when needed in the not too distant future.

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Brian Morrison

Re: "trying to fly on one engine would make the aircraft very difficult to control or land safely."

Maybe, maybe not.

The problem is that if the engines were at flight idle then the propellers would be at low pitch and thus very draggy, so with 3 engines in this condition and the one fully functional engine furthest from the fuselage and hence generating quite a bit of yaw control would have been pretty difficult and the sink rate would probably have been pretty high too. Add in an obstacle, and one that can ignite spilled fuel very easily and you get the result from May.

Very sad, and another example of how complex systems can do bizarre things that can't be diagnosed in the short time available. Maybe a better outcome would have required immediate shutdown and feathering of the failed engines, but the need to make that decision may not have been apparent to the crew until too late.

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O2 craps itself on national Blighty holiday as cabinet minister moans: 'Oi, sort it out!'

Brian Morrison

There are a number of HLRs which hold account information and authentication keys. If one of these fails then a proportion of users will lose access to the network. The HLR in use depends on the SIM card, I forget which digit in the 16 determines it.

Looks like both of you had 1 SIM covered by the failing auth mechanisms.

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RAF Eurofighter gets a Battle of Britain makeover

Brian Morrison

Re: Secret Technology

The Hurricane fuel system consists of two main tanks in the wing roots and a "gravity" tank or header tank between the engine and cockpit. The latter was neither armoured nor self-sealing which made it very easy to rupture and ignite. It did have the ability to continue to feed fuel to the engine in the event that the fuel pumps failed i.e. fed by means of gravity.

Many of Archie McIndoe's "guinea pigs" for post-burn plastic surgery were Hurricane pilots, it wasn't an ideal design feature.

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Factory reset memory wipe FAILS in 500 MEELLION Android mobes

Brian Morrison

Re: Huh?

Or for that matter, any device in the Android/iOS/WinPhone camps. Blackberry are probably the most secure horse in the race, and they were not absolved from risk with the Heartbleed/Poodle/Freak attacks on crypto.

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