* Posts by The BigYin

3055 posts • joined 25 Mar 2008

Missiles-on-rooftops Brit spy Farr: UK gov can slurp your Facebook, Twitter ... What of it?

The BigYin
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Re: Why is this any surprise?

"Anything that is posted on line is accessible to the sys admin or law enforcement with or perhaps without a warrant."

And this is what people (like Andrew Fernie it seems) completely fail to understand.

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The BigYin
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Re: Why is this any surprise?

"Presumably they should write postal letters in cyphers and invisible ink too; and hold all conversations in code:"

If they wish to protect their communications from outside eyes, then yes. It is beholden upon then to ensure that the channel is secure. Posting on FB and checking the "Please no spy on this" box doesn't do a thing.

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The BigYin
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Re: Why is this any surprise?

Anything sent via Facebook, G+ etc is public, regardless of any privacy setting.

If people want private comms, then they need to start using PGP, OTR etc.

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The BigYin
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Why is this any surprise?

Anything on Facebook, G+ etc should be considered public (regardless of what settings you put on it). The exceptions I can think of are for self-hosted services and I mean in your own home, not a VPS.

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Student promises Java key to unlock Simplocker ransomware

The BigYin
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Re: Next step?

"would you refuse to use Android and advise all people to stay away from it"

I'd be close to doing so, yes. My own experiences with Android have been less than stellar. Although that's mostly down to shoddy coding by the likes of HTC.

What irks me about Android is the impossible to uninstall crapware (e.g. Facebook), although I guess that's more the fault of the carrier.

I guess my biggest peeve with actual Android is the total lack of clarity over permission. Apps suddenly claim they need to access my identity, contacts, location, media (e.g. TuneIn Radio). Why? They the feck does it need that? Why doesn't Android have the tooling the allow me to block such privacy invasions?

Hell, why doesn't Android support the likes of CardDAV be default? Ho hum.

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The BigYin
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Re: "even an undergrad can crack it"

The whole point of being an undergrad is that you should already be the cream of the crop. That means you should arrive bursting with energy and maybe even self-taught on some things (easier in some subjects than others).

From the looks of his blog, that's exactly the kind of person we have here.

Also, he is a third/fourth year undergrad and so getting close to be ready for the real world.

What uni gives you is the framework (structured lessons etc) and resources (equipment, profs) to learn. Whether or not one does is up to the individual - spoon feeding ends after the sixth form.

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The BigYin
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Re: Next step?

"And why the friggin' heck is my icons panel always hidden?"

Because something in one of the many pieces of JQuery is setting "display: none". So a quick bit of GreaseMonkey action and I have my icons back. Good stuff.

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The BigYin
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Re: Next step?

Predictable:

"That's actually why I refuse to use Windows and advise all people to stay away from it."

:-D

(And why the friggin' heck is my icons panel always hidden?)

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The BigYin
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"even an undergrad can crack it"

Really?

Universities (should be) taking the cream of the intellectual/motivated crop. So getting to be an undergrad should be a badge of honour stating "I have the chops to do this, or learn how to do it at the very least".

I will agree that the Labour and Tories parties have done their level best to destroy the credibility of UK degrees, but let's give credit where it is due. Simon Bell (and his profs) are exactly the kind of people we need.

So less of the snide belittling of a proper undergrad, please; save that for the fake undergrads doing combined degrees in hairdressing and homoeopathy (although the hairdressing does at least have practical value).

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Stephen Fry MADNESS: 'New domain names GENERATE NEW IP NUMBERS'

The BigYin
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I should buy...

....f.uk

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Piketty thinks the 1% should cough up 80%. Discuss

The BigYin
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Re: That assumes continuation of state education and the NHS

> Labour sprayed money all over the the NHS, education, everything.

Wrong. Labpur gave taxpayer's money to various people through PFI deals (a policy started by the Tories). So they ended up paying DOUBLE the price for hospitals etc, guaranteed the companies' profits and got no tax back on those profits because the company was actually offshore in a tax haven.

That is a far, far cry from actually investing in the NHS etc.

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The fresh Mint of dwell there: This is a story all about how 17 is here for a while

The BigYin
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Power saving?

Seems a bit crazy, but that reads exactly like problems with power management and wireless mice.

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ASUS launches 5-in-1 Android Windows Phone laptop tablet (breathe)

The BigYin
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Nice idea

Seems like a hardware version of Canonical's Ubuntu-on-Android convergence idea.

Shame about the Windows infection though.

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Tech that we want (but they never seem to give us)

The BigYin
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Re: Non-reflective laptop screens.

You get what you pay for, although Lenovo quality has slipped of late.

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The BigYin
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Re: Non-reflective laptop screens.

Some things are better in gloss. How about a material that can switch between matte/non-reflective and gloss? Press a button; boom.

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The BigYin
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Re: A KVM switch that follows the Eyes

Synergy. http://www.synergy-project.org/

Doesn't follow the eyes, but does follow the mouse pointer. The eyes thing could probably be hacked in using a Kinect or similar.

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The BigYin
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Re: Can anything be on my Christmas list?

> universal charger, the only real request on my list!

Isn't that mico-USB and now mandatory in the EU?

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The BigYin
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Uplink module.

Our phones make calls, take pictures, play music, play video, play games and, by and large, are a bit shit at them all bar the first one.

What I'd like to see is a phone with a smaller screen and decent battery that can make calls. It also offers it's up-link connection to other devices. No need for multiple SIMs or crap like that. Your camera, laptop, whatever just links to you phone and uses that to get on the Internet.

The phone itself becomes optimised to that job and lasts a lot longer on a single charge. A side effect would be that you could make calls from your tablet, laptop, watch as these could simply access the contact details your phone already store (using CardDAV, say).

No need for proprietary bullshit. Do it all on open standards

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Multiplayer Elite to debut on May 30th

The BigYin
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There's Oolite, Pioneer and even a BBC emulator in ajavscript (which can run Elite).

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Autodesk to release 'open' 3D printer

The BigYin
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Pull the other one

Autodesk...."open"....pfft.

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Mozilla agrees to add DRM support to Firefox – under protest

The BigYin
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While people moan about "Net Neutrality"...

...their freedom is torn from them piece by precious piece.

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Activist investors try forcing Google to pay more taxes

The BigYin
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Re: The board don't want?

Shame really - it'd be funny.

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The BigYin
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The board don't want?

Feck the board.

If the shareholders want them to wear pink tu-tus and sing "I'm a little" teapot then that is EXACTLY what they will have to do - or leave.

The (well, some) shareholders want Goog to up their tax payments and take the revenue cut, if enough other shareholders agree then the board becomes bound by the shareholder's will.

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Virtually yours: Microsoft unveils Windows-as-a-service

The BigYin
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Re: Three new offerings from MS

> And Android - which also adds Spyware as a Service

Because Windows never, ever, ever did tha....wait a minute! (Phone home)

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The BigYin
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Three new offerings from MS

VaaS - Virus as a Service;

RaaS - Reboot as a Service; and

FaaS - Frustration as a Service (this is Win8 based after all)

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Gigabyte Brix Pro: You don't need no steenkin' Xbox... when you have 4K-ing amazing graphics

The BigYin
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Indeed - 12GB should be enough for the OS.

As for games - if there's not enough storage just add a new HDD to the pool.

I guess Valve are enforcing an "enough free space" rule in the install, rather than just displaying warning.

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New .london domains touted tomorrow amid usual tech hypegasm

The BigYin
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Missed a bit

Given what fuels London's property market and the UK's reticence on sanctions against Putin, surely it should be .London.ru?

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OnePlus One equals 'killer' new mobe running CyanogenMod

The BigYin
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Almost nice

Looks good, great price, nice OS but no SD and "non-removable battery" means: FAIL.

Shame.

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Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches

The BigYin
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Curious - I wonder how they handle the keys? If it all happens client-side (either installed application or JS) and the keys are never on their server...they're kind S.O.L. Just like if Google got a subpoena for my emails. Some are in the clear, others are GPG'd so all you get is some metadata (which could be a problem in and of itself, but the message is secured).

Upshot - if Lavaboom does not have my keys as they reside with me (outside of Germany), am I not safe? OK; Iguess I can never visit Germany with those keys.

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Over half of software developers think they'll be millionaires – study

The BigYin
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A millionaire?

I am just glad when I survive a round of redundancies!

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OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts

The BigYin
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Re: @Gene Cash

"But what really lowered the bug rate was using that information to identify the pattern of that bug and pro actively look for other instances of that pattern and verifty they did not have the fault as well."

Static Code Analysis. The first time you run it on your code base, have spare undergarments to hand. It's not foolproof, but it is another tool that is inexpensive to slip into your build system and automate.

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The BigYin
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Every single code review. If you don't find something, you didn't look hard enough.

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VAT's all folks: Telecoms and services tax to be set at consumer's homeland rate

The BigYin
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Re: What has the EU been smoking?

"Extra duty on Petrol & Diesel? Why?

Toll roads when Car Tax (not been Road fund for years) is nearly 40% cheaper to collect is madness."

Except the car tax/road fund is flat rate. It's actually "better" to levy the fuel. Those who drive more, drive faster or drive less efficient cars pay more. Only that last one would hit the poor who can't afford efficient hybrids.

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The BigYin
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Joke

Re: What has the EU been smoking?

"The odds on it costing him more than seconds of his time are so small that I can't even begin to calculate them."

But Alan Sugar pays a lot, lot more income tax; so it all works out.

Why yes nurse, I do believe it is time for my pills....

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The BigYin
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Re: What has the EU been smoking?

"VAT is regressive and hits poor people higher than rich people, obviously."

Is it? I thought VAT would scale directly with one's purchasing power? I am no taxation/poverty expert though.

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The BigYin
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What has the EU been smoking?

There appears to be a wave of common sense flowing over the EU at the moment...please stop, it's messing with my prejudice.

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You can play Flappy Bird on a POINT OF SALE TERMINAL

The BigYin
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Like they care

If there's chip&pin fraud they just say "Chip&pin was used, you must have told someone your pin, feck orf". They have no incentive to fix anything - and they won't (fixes cost money and that hits this quarters bonuses).

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Microsoft in 1-year Windows XP survival deal with UK govt

The BigYin
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Re: Wasting taxpayer's money again

"Yup, the old "Wasting Taxpayers' Money" cry, without looking at the bigger picture."

I am looking at the bigger picture. If gov.uk were contributing to GPL code by using it (and thus funding development, patches etc) then those benefits flow back to the public.

The cost being £5mill, £50mill or £500mill is irrelevant. The money spent on GPL code is, by its very nature, simply a better invest. There is nothing stopping MS creating their own GPL offerings, so they can play if they want to.

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The BigYin
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"So I'm not sure why XP support has to end"

Money. Also it becomes harder to maintain code as the number of branches increase.

Even in the F/OSS world where everyone has access to the source, older versions get dropped. Of course with F/OSS there is nothing to stop someone maintaining an older branch off their own bat.

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The BigYin
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Wasting taxpayer's money again

So their inability to plan ahead has cost us £5.5mill. Nice.

Hire the guy from Munich and just get the job done. Get off the MS bullshit as much as possible and allow the benefits to flow back to the public.

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Back off, Siri! Microsoft debuts Halo beauty Cortana

The BigYin
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Curious

In the interests of equality, should the gender/race of these "assistants" not be configurable?

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The BigYin
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Re: You MS haters are amusing!

"Microsoft is firing on all cylinders."

Yes, an antiquate single-cylinder, 2-stroke in desperate need of a tune and fresh oil.

"There's lots of good news, lots of energy, lots of work going on."

There's lots of PR puffery and a fair amount of FUD spreading too (e.g. Munich). There's also a lot of panic back-pedalling too (e.g. Win 8 Start Menu).

"The stock price has been surging"

Back to ~1999 levels you mean. Remind me...when did they get convicted of monopoly abuse?Ah yes, 2001 and it was a steady slide into their nadir of Feb 2009. If you don't go bankrupt, you stock can only really go one way - regression to the mean. That's what's happened to MS. Not that surprising really.

"They got their mojo back."

They never *HAD* any mojo. That's the point of MS. Staid, dull, drab, boring. The mojo was off with Apple and has almost always been with F/OSS (that roiling cauldron of innovation, crazy plans and actual competition).

"You can hate on them all you want"

I don't hate them. I utterly despise them and am disgusted that I have to work with their septic shit every day. Although I am slowly managing to migrate away from it to tools that actually work and don't phone-home.

"while making believe they are the same Microsoft you came to hate"

Oh, but they are. I think the continuing issues over the Windows Tax (I am told it's near impossible to remove Win 8 without first accepting the EULA), the Android Tax, the ODF FUD being spread, the OOXML clusterfuck, the SecureBoot fiasco and so on give us plenty enough reason to not "hate" MS, but to avoid using any of their products whenever possible.

"I think you are going to be disappointed and proven wrong."

See above.

"Thus spake largefile on 4/2/14!"

I think you'll find you didn't.

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Judge throws out lawsuit lobbed at Facebook for using kids' pics in targeted ads

The BigYin
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Re: @The Big Yin

"ironically, in contravention of the sites T&Cs in the first place (which specifically forbid you from allowing 3rd parties [law enforcement excepted] into your account)."

Oh, I know. But there was/is a trend in demanding such access from interviewees in order to assess if they are suitable employees.

"And yes, I know all the services above are happy to ask you for your account details for other services."

That's subtly different. With OpenID/OAuth etc they never get a password; what they get is a certificate that you generate (well, OpenID/OAuth generate) that allows that service and only that service whatever access you deign to grant (level of granularity determined by OpenID/OAuth provider).

You can rescind that cert at any time.

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The BigYin
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Re: @All names taken

Some employers will demand access to your account.

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The BigYin
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How does that hold?

Can a minor enter a legally binding contract in the USA?

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Office of Fair Trading: UK.gov IT deals lack effective competition

The BigYin
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Only one main requirement

"All code must be AGPL"

As a sub requirement the configuration settings can be broken out into "Things that can be AGPL" and "Things that can't me made AGPL, but to which gov.uk and an irrevocable license to use in perpetuity".

Data is another matter.

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MPs blast HMRC for using anti-terrorism laws against whistleblower

The BigYin
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Re: If they only want RIPA to be used for anti-terrorism...

If HMRC broke the law, then identify the managers responsible and take them to court. As this has not happened, then we can assume that HMRC was within that law. Utterly without morals, but legal nonetheless.

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The BigYin
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If they only want RIPA to be used for anti-terrorism...

...then they should have written a law that can only be used for anti-terrorism! Even councils use RIPA to stalk people.

The fault here is not HMRC (although they need a good kicking for aiding tax evasion on many counts), but MPs for drafting a law that does not say what they meant it to say.

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GSMA: EU net neutrality reforms are the enemy of business

The BigYin
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Utter bullshit

The Internet used to be net-neutral and that saw an explosion of innovation. Innovation is most rapid in the boiling turmoil of equal access. If you're not the best, you're last. End of discussion.

This is brilliant for consumers but pretty shit for the companies who get it wrong. So they want walled gardens that mean when they fail, the customer is fucked. Or they want barriers to entry so when someone else has a better way the customer can't get it and is, err, fucked once again.

Customers*NEED* neutrality.

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