* Posts by bazza

1097 posts • joined 23 Apr 2008

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Falcon 9 fireworks display grounds SpaceX

bazza
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Re: Relying on subcontractor self-assessments

Part of what SpaceX is doing is finding out where the balance point between testing and cost is.

Well, they seem to be doing that the expensive way. I don't know how much that failed launch has cost them, but it would surely have paid for a hell of a lot more testing...

It's really hard to get commercial officers to properly acknowledge risk in all companies. Generally you have to have some sort of corporate disaster before they learn the lesson properly, after which the company might not be around anyway, or they've been sacked, jailed, or whatever. Ask BP, TEPCO,

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Now India probes Google, threatens $1bn fine over 'biased' search

bazza
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I don't think Google's search results are that solid. Have you noticed how even if you've put a phrase in quotes Google will show results ignoring the quotes? That makes you look through lots of pages of results (and hence ads) before deciding that no, they have no useful result. Not useful to me, but renumerative for Google.

Also Maps is worse than ever, full of bugs. Tried getting rid of a way point recently on a route?

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US to stage F-35-versus-Warthog bake-off in 2018

bazza
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Still won't work. If you say, "There's an A10 around" it'll frighten a lot of people and they'll run away, just in case.

That does not apply to the F35...

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bazza
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Re: Multi-Role Aircraft

The English Electric Canberra was pretty good, it was the jet equivalent of the Mosquito. Of course, it's no where quick enough by todays standards, but back in its day it was pretty awsome.

Its first showing at the Farnborough airshow stunned a lot of people. Roland Beaumont made it look like a fighter for agility, speed, etc. but was it was clearly a hell of a lot bigger than a fighter.

EE were pretty good at iconic aircraft; they went on to do the frightening Lightning!

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Rosetta probe spots Comet 67P being buzzed by boulder

bazza
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Re: Escape pod

Na, it'd have been the size and shape of a washing machine...

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Big trouble in big China: Crashing economy in Middle Kingdom body slams US tech stocks

bazza
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Careful...

It's not really a laughing matter, tempting though a Python reference is. Britain doesn't exactly have a good reputation in mainland China. The Opium Wars were a shameful part in the UK's history.

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Does Linux need a new file system? Ex-Google engineer thinks so

bazza
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Re: FAT-free

@thames,

No, we are not stuck with FAT. The only reason FAT is used is because too many people lack the imagination to see that there is Another Way.

If there were a free, well known, acknowledged and widely accepted ext file system driver for Windows then no one would have to use FAT ever again. If such a driver were available it wouldn't matter a damned what MS did or did not ship, because everyone would be using a driver beyond MS's control for cameras, etc. Whatever concerns there used to be about the inefficiency of squeezing a HDD f/s on to a small SD cards is now irrelevant given the huge capacity of even the cheapest one.

There are ext drivers available, but they either cost money or are free but incomplete. The cost of assembling a team to do this properly is surely far less than the money all the manufacturers pay to MS to use FAT.

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bazza
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Re:Thames

The CDDL license used by ZFS was carefully crafted to make it incompatible with the license used by Linux.

Isn't the one defining point of GPL that any other license, no matter what it says, is essentially incompatible with it?

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bazza
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Re: FAT-free

It's a pity that this ever came about in the first place, and was entirely avoidable. All it needed was for someone to do a decent ext2/3/4 (or whatever) file system driver for Windows and then there would have been no need for FAT in cameras, mobiles, etc.

Of course, there isn't a good finished free one. If the vendors pursued by MS clubbed together to make one it would make things cheaper for them all. It's typical of the short term cost conscious thinking that a lot of companies exhibit, instead of the more ambitious we'll-win-in-the-end-we-can-beat-the-incumbent long term advice that engineers routinely give only to be routinely rejected by company boards.

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bazza
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Re: About time there was...

I can remember having to type 'purge' (or something like that) a lot to keep within my space quota on the VAX we had at university...

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bazza
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Re: @ Martijn Otto - You mean btrfs, surely

I just wish Oracle would change the licencing of ZFS out so it can be included with distros by default, instead of being cast out into a legal wilderness as it is now.

Well, it's up to them I suppose. It's their code, and I think everyone is grateful that they chose to share it at all. They obviously had specific goals on control and re-use that they felt GPL wouldn't achieve, so wrote a license to suit. It's not Sun/Oracle's fault that Linux is under GPL2. We can make do and mend with building our own kernel modules or getting some pre built ones.

FreeBSD has had no trouble at all adopting ZFS. There's OSX implementations, and reportedly MS briefly considered putting it into Windows. Rigid and unwavering adherence to the current GPL2 guarantees that Linux is always going to be hampered this way, which ultimately is not beneficial for the Linux community.

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bazza
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integrated filesystem checksumming, for example, should really be everywhere.

Well in effect it has been for a long time, though not necessarily at the level of the file system. Physical storage has had error detection / correction for a long time now.

It was only with the advent of very large storage devices that their on board ECC became inadequate for "ensuring" (there's no such thing as a guarantee) data accuracy. That's led to file systems like ZFS putting in an extra layer of ECC of their own to compensate.

Incidentally I think the characteristics of the ECC in ZFS were carefully chosen to accommodate the typical bit error rate achieved by HDDs. Getting that right in a file system design is important; just slapping in a CRC something-or-other makes no sense unless one matches it's parameters to the BER of the underlying physical devices. Too much in the file system and you're wasting space and throughput, too little and the BER might be higher than desired. Of course, choosing the BER that's right for the business is another matter...

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Leaked images claim to show BlackBerry's first Android phone

bazza
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Re: Rumour mill has it

From what I can tell one of the problems in porting BB10 to other manufacturers' hardware is that the bootloader and some hardware design features are a key security component in the BB10 ecosystem.

Makes sense - no open debug ports, signed boot, who holds those keys, etc, all the things that have to be done correctly to allow BB10 to be secure too. So without those things being exactly as needed on, for example, a S5, porting BB10 to the Samsung would be a big job. At least, this is my speculation as to why we've not seen BB10 on other hardware.

However, if BlackBerry make their own Android hardware they can be in charge of all of those features for themselves, so dual boot or whatever becomes a real option without screwing up any of their security accreditations for the BB10 variant.

Being a BB10 user I won't be rushing out to buy this Android phone from them. But if you are an Androidista, it could be very good. BlackBerry are undeniably good at hardware and their keyboard is also very good (screen or hardware). They're also one of the few manufacturers out there who aren't shy of making their handset a couple of mm fatter and putting in a decent battery. This Z30 of mine lasts the best part of two days. And it's built like a brick ****house.

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bazza
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Re: It's fake...

Various experts have been saying they'll be bust imminently for years. Hasn't happened yet.

There are some fairly influential niche users who would find it very difficult to move off the BlackBerry platform. For them it might well be cheaper to buy BlackBerry and run it as is.

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Antiques in spaaaaace! Retired space shuttles cannibalised for parts

bazza
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Re: Nasa contacts BBC Top Gear

"As a space geek and a car nerd, that was the best Top Gear ever. I was gutted at the end result, but kudos for the attempt - so close ..."

It truly was one of the great moments in all of Television History. Especially the bit when they put the Top Gear space stickers on the wings upside down...

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Botched Google Stagefright fix won't be resolved until September

bazza
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Re: standard Google behaviour, only hearing the echoes

"- it is abundantly clear that the current structure of Android makes it stupendously complex to create patches that reach back a few generations because that also involves 3rd parties such as phone providers for the modem code etc. My hope is thus that their patch will include a move towards a more layered model where there are not so many dependencies to address between the various parties."

It was abudantly clear from the moment Android launched in 2008. Literally every other major operating system back then already had online automatic updating available and was well esablished. Even Google's Chrome web browser had an update feature all the way back then.

It suggests that back then Google treated Android as some sort of toy, not really taking it seriously. They created an enourmous security problem for themselves and their users. Not very bright these Google engineers and businessmen; any ecosystem, including Android, is always one major security incident away from being dropped by its users like a hot potato. Where would Google's mobile search revenue be then?

Commercially speaking they handled Android pretty badly too. By making it possible for the Chinese manufacturers to take Android, de-Googlise it and make it their own there's a billion strong market that Google are missing out on. And they run the same risk too in India. If their intention was to make a platform to attract users to Google's ad ladden services, making that platform hijackable by other manufacturers / service providers seems like stupid idea...

Sure, as far as Google's shareholders are concerned Android has been terrific. However, it's nothing like as terrific as it might have been had they found a way to have full control over Android. Fortunately for Google shareholders mostly care about relative performance, and there MS have obliged by being woeful... That's very fortunate for Google for the following reason.

MS's basic model is a standardised hardware architecture that any manufacturer can make, allowing MS to push out standard binary blobs to all users for updates, etc. And that works, generally speaking. All Windows mobile phones get updates, just like Apple, BlackBerry, etc.

Had MS done a better job of making WinPhone appealling and done so a lot earlier, MS may well have very quickly turned it into a big and enduring success.

But they didn't. Google easily slotted into a good second place (profits-wise) behind Apple, meaning they could satisfy their shareholders. Being a poor third to Apple and MS would have lead to grumpy shareholders.

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Apple's AirDrop abused by 'cyber-flashing' London train perv

bazza
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Re: Ho hum,

What could possibly go wrong indeed.

Quite a lot.

Having Airdrop wide open like that is equivalent to running an unsecured WiFi network. You're held responsible for the traffic that passes through it. So if someone is using your WiFi for downloading kiddie porn it's your problem to prove it wasn't you when the police come knocking. Difficult.

So if some horrible person sent kiddie port to an open Airdrop iPhone, that phone now has illegal content on it. The owner would then either have to

1) destroy the phone immediately,

2) hand it over to the police immediately with the image intact (the right thing to do, hopefully the cops know what Airdrop is...))

3) or take a risk that their phone at some point later in time is not forensically examined and the deleted image discovered lurking in the file system somewhere.

If 3) did happen it would be a bit late to claim the image wasn't yours and had arrived unwanted through Airdrop. You'd then have that charge added to whatever else was on the rap sheet to have caused your phone to be in the hands of the cops in the first place.

OK, so that might be a low risk, but it would have a high impact on your life.

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bazza
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Re: Ho hum,

Maybe this can be tweaked into another IT sponsored pub meeting...

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Intel left a fascinating security flaw in its chips for 16 years – here's how to exploit it

bazza
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Re: Not ironic

Alas there was quite a lot of 16 bit code lurking inside OS/2 :-( A lot of thunking was going on inside.

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bazza
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Re: Genuine question!

I too am old enough to remember the 80186. Research Machines (RM) in the UK used them in their schools-focused PCs in around about 1986? I remember that they ran a slightly wonky version of DOS...

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Dying cipher suites are stinking up TLS with man-in-the-middle vulns

bazza
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Not sure about being a standard question. Afterall you can always have bacon with anything, or at least fry it on a server if needs be.

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Windows 10 is FORCING ITSELF onto domain happy Windows 7 PCs

bazza
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For What It's Worth...

Microsoft aren't the only outfit forcing unwanted things on their customers.

Whilst not engaging in the practise to quite the same degree, RedHat are busily driving the Linux world in a direction that is not wholly acceptable to a very large proportion of the community. Systemd is probably going to become unavoidable at some point. At least RedHat's GNOME 3 looks like it might descend into irrelevancy (it is busily disappearing up its own pretentious arse), with Cinnamon being a prime candidate to replace it.

And as for Apple, well if you want to stay secure you have to take the new versions of OS X and iOS. Which doesn't always work out so well for the hardware and applications you already have... Though I suppose if an organisation is swanky enough to have gone the Apple route for its corporate IT then it probably wouldn't blink at all when the IT manager comes in and says that they have to replace all the hardware or applications to avoid being wide open to a hack.

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bazza
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Re: Why?

"Me, I am a Linux/Android maven. If I can't see the source code, I don't trust it! "

You've got access to Google's proprietary source code for their proprietary blobs like Google Play Services that they add to Linux to make Android? Care to share that with us?

"Simple as that."

So it would seem.

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Google's Moto-v-Microsoft appeal denied

bazza
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One day at a time...

...is all it takes.

A lot of this goes back to the US patent office. If they had been more rigourous with checking the patents they actually awarded for novely, prior art, etc. then none of this would have ever happened.

Companies are more or less obliged by their shareholders to seek patents, and to then defend them when they are awarded. A company's board that doesn't do that can get into serious personal legal difficulties with their shareholders as they would not be doing their utmost to maximise shareholder value. From a board's point of view, it's probably safer to sue for patent royalities and lose than not sue.

With the patent office handing out patents like free candy all of the same flavour, this situation was bound to arise. I wonder if they can be sued?

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Q2 wins drag Cray back into profit territory

bazza
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It is indeed the interconnect that matters. The interconnect on Fujitsu's K computer is superb, and is wholly responsible for that machine achieving its very high sustained performance.

The problem is that a some important compute loads are not infinitely divisible. And even for those problems that are highly parallel there is a law of diminishing returns. Using smaller and smaller CPUs means that the interconnect has to do that much more to compensate; you've got to get data in and out somehow. Ultimately the computer becomes all interconnect and comparatively little compute. Losing access to cheap high performance CPUs would make the interconnect problem for Cray, etc. a whole lot harder to engineer.

AFAIK the K machine achieved a pretty good balance between interconnect and single thread performance. It's mean/peak performance ratio is pretty close to 1, something you can achieve only if there is adequate interconnect performance for the CPUs used. Fujitsu built the interconnect right into the CPUs, which is expensive but a good way to go. I don't know what Cray do. Looking at the mean/peak ratio for some of the higher up entries in the Top500 list, you'd have to conclude that they have sub-optimal interconnects.

Interconnects themselves are not cheap to develop, and it will all become Ethernet one day anyway. The SerialRapidIO standard can't go anywhere because the market for it is too small to fund the development. Same for Fibre Channel. Speaking purely hypothetically, how long before PCIe becomes too expensive to make it compete with Ethernet? Several lanes of 400Gb/s Ethernet sounds a lot faster than several lanes of PCIe... A 400Gb/s Ethernet switch chip is going to cost a huge sum to bring to market, and so would a comparable PCIe crossbar; can the world afford to do both?

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bazza
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Nice to See

Nice to see Cray making money.

My worry is that Cray and the other HPC and high performance embedded outfits all depend on companies like IBM, Intel and Fujitsu making stupendously powerful CPUs. If IBM, Intel or Fujitsu decide to stop developing and making them, then where do companies like Cray get their CPUs from? They cannot afford to develop their own, the buyers of these supercomputers cannot afford to pay the development costs either.

I know there's GPUs out there, but they just don't fit every computational problem out there. We will always need a fast CPU.

Given that we all kinda need HPC to carry on (climate modelling, protein folding, etc), what can we do to safeguard that other than to keep buying Power/X64/Sparc based servers with large CPUs in large numbers? I like ARM, etc, but if they came to dominate the server market too (and they're trying, and may succeed), where does that leave the niche guys like Cray and their customers who really need fast single thread performance?

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Petrol cars are dead in the water, says Tesla CTO waving numbers on the back of an envelope

bazza
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Good point!

Plus they're no good if you want to go on a long journey. For a lot of people, buying electric means also buying a fossil fuelled car too. That's pretty wasteful.

When they can be charged in 5 minutes and go 400 miles and we get the bulk of the electricity from fussion/fission/hydro/etc, then it's worth it.

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Don't want pranksters 'bricking' your Android? Just stop using the internet, duh – Google

bazza
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Re: A patch? sure, and pigs might fly

There's a lot of Chinese Android mobiles that have effectively told Google to shove it. Degooglised Android is all the rage over there.

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Invisible app ads slug smartmobes with 2GB of daily downloads

bazza
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Re: @bazza

Why do businesses spend money on advertising? It's not because they like to reduce their profits by throwing money away, it's because advertising, like it or not, has been demonstrated to increase sales volumes and hence revenues. Greater sales volumes allow fixed costs to be spread over more units and hence tend to reduce prices, not increase them.

What rot. Businesses are spending more on advertising now than they ever did pre-google simply because there are now so many digital advertising places to advertise. Businesses primarily fear not being seen, so they advertise. The advertising market is roughly half digital, half not. Digital effectively doubled the advertising market. But we're not buying twice the quantity of washing powder, crisps, cars, etc.

It's not for nothing that it's called the Google Tax.

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bazza
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Re: T'was a good speech from a balcony in Folkstone, though a bit germanic...

I do hope that UK companies also have customers outside Blighty and the Falklands?

Have you seen the balance of trade recently?

Seriously, citation needed.

Oh good grief, have you spent the last decade asleep?

"Also note that this money supports people who might be on the dole without advertising revenue, so you ACTUALLY PAY LESS TAXES FOR DOLE SUPPORT! Isn't that great?"

Are you seriously suggesting that everyone involved in forcing unwanted information into peoples' eyes in the many imaginative ways they do so is otherwise totally incapable of earning a living in any other way? Sounds to me like you're insulting them. And whilst I may not be paying tax for their dole money, everything I buy to house my family, feed them and keep them clothed costs more because of the advertising commissioned to try and persuade me to buy more of it.

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bazza
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Re: The poor advertisers...

"I may have little sympathy for the advertisers"

Your sentiment is misplaced. Ask yourself, who pays the advertisers?

When you think about it you'll realise that ultimately its the unsuspecting user getting stung, all the time. Advertising is just a business expense for retailers, suppliers, builders, etc who pass the cost on to us.

So also ask yourself how ethical is ad funded software and online services? Before you answer that, consider these points:

* The likes of Google are perfectly happy for this type of fraud to take place, they cream off the top every time. In fact, Google have been particularly effective at inventing new services (maps, search, mail, etc) specifically for creating new avenues for adverts. Businesses then have to take up advertising on those services for fear of falling in the public conciousness and losing market share. And every man, woman and child has to pay for that no matter what phone or computer they buy.

* The whole of the UK advertising industry is worth £14billion per year, about £600 for every wage earner, and about half of that is online digital. That's about £300 per year paid to companies like Google by every wage earner in the country. And every time a company like Google invent a new service, that figure goes up.

I think the answer is that it's not very ethical at all. There's already way too much advertising, we can hardly be more advertised at, yet we all pay extra for it without the option.

Worse, Google don't really pay any tax anywhere either.

So Who Owns Google?

That's also a worthwhile question. Google, Facebook, etc. have shareholders, and ultimately shareholders tend to be a small number of individuals and financial institutions who are themselves ultimately owned by pension schemes. That's right, some of that £300 per year in the UK is going into funding foreign pensioners, without it being taxed to help support the UK population first. Terrific.

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Fiat Chrysler recall BLUNDERING could lump carmaker with $105m fine – report

bazza
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Dose of Reality

The car industry needs an injection of reality into their thinking on the security of connected cars. They are sleep walking into huge liabilities, and this incident for Fiat Chrysler should act as a wake up call. They must first ask themselves what do they really think they're getting from all this connected technology, and do they think it will be worth it?

The insurance industry should start getting worried too. It's going to be very difficult to blame a driver for a crash if they can realistically claim, "wasn't me that pressed the throttle, the car must have been hacked.". Eventually the insurers won't be able to push back against such claims, and they will then have to pick up the bill.

If the manufacturers are looking for increased sales from a "connencted car" they might have got it hideously wrong. The ones that can say "no radio connections here" could do very well in the market once a few more scare stories start circulating.

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

bazza
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Re: That's what happens...

@Boris the Cockroach,

"At least they found the cause, just need to make sure it stays fixed."

Well, they think that's what's happened, it's their best estimate.

With any engineering project you can either over engineer it to achieve a required strength, or you can par everything to the bone and be fastidious about materials testing, manufacturing process and quality control. The former doesn't work for a rocket, it would be too heavy. The latter takes total commitment everywhere in the organisation and supply chain, right down to the smelters. Space X have found themselves somewhere in between.

So it's not just a failed part that's wrong, their working processes that are supposed to ensure quality are also wrong. That needs redesigning too, and then run from scratch across the whole organisation. That's a lot more difficult and expensive than redesigning a simple strut.

I'm also puzzled as to why they chose steel. Steel does some weird things when it gets cold, and this one was immersed in liquid oxygen. It gets brittle, it can fall apart all on its own, you have to test it in its working conditions not at a cosy lab temperature, it reacts with oxygen and rusts (and there's nothing quite as reactive as liquid oxygen). It just doesn't sound like the right material. Even stainless isn't that good; as stresses open up micro cracks in the material the passivation layer is breached. I wonder if they'll change material choice too.

I'd be slightly surprised if they can return to flight within a few months. Process changes are not quick.

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bazza
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That's what happens...

...when you go down the scrap yard for rocket parts.

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WHOA! Windows 10 to be sold on USB drives – what a time to be alive

bazza
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Just like the good old days

You get your software comes on this ROM chip thingy that has no legs on it that you plug into a socket and you turn it on and eventually <bing bong> you computer is up and running and then you do this weird 'install' thing that hardly seems necessary really and instead of getting a good old fashioned BASIC prompt you get this strange cartoonish picture on the TV with an arrow that moves around everytime the cat chases that mouse thing and its a devilish job getting the old cassette player with a data tape working these days.

Going back to my BBC Micro.

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HSBC takes Twitter tongue-lashing over failure to offer Apple Pay

bazza
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Re: Why?

Whilst not wishing to attack or defend Apple in any particular way (I'll never own an iThing in my life if I can help it), weren't Google trying to take a whole lot more with Google Wallet?

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bazza
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Re: ublic transport?

"You cannot rely on a means of payment that itself relies on a power source."

Well that depends on how likely the device is to run out of power, and what form of payment or transport you're taking.

Air travel isn't so bad. I've seen plenty of people use mobile phone based boarding cards. They don't let you on board unless you've already paid, so no one is interested if you're phone is flat by the time you land in Malaga or wherever. And even if you lose your phone you can easily get a paper boarding card replacement at the ticket desk (unless its Ryan Air or similar).

Trains though, well that most certainly is a different matter.

I've always thought NFC was a good idea for travel, especially in Oyster card form.

* Lose your Oyster card, perhaps someone gets to travel free for a day until you get home and cancel the card online.

* Lose your NFC credit card, well maybe then they get to take a bit more off you first.

* Lose your phone and, presuming there's a fingerprint reading or PIN extra security step, no one gets your money. However they do have your phone, which might be worse...

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Apple and Samsung are plotting to KILL OFF the SIM CARD - report

bazza
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Re: And the carriers smile

No doubt you think UEFI, "Seecure Boot", etc were done for your benefit too?

Actually Secure Boot, which can always be turned off (at least it can on the hardware I've seen), is for your benefit, if you want a signed boot process.

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ARM servers look to have legs as OVH boots up Cavium cloud

bazza
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Re: 2x1600W PSU?!?!?!

Well in terms of power consumption, it's 1x1600Watts. They're a redundant pair.

Also there's 384 cores in this box, plus storage. That's significantly more cores than you'd have if you maxed out a 2U box with Xeons.

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Uber to drivers: You make a ton of dosh for us – but that doesn't make you employees

bazza
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"Uber is a taxi operator, and needs a taxi operator's license."

Doesn't have one

"The drivers are self-employed taxi drivers, who need a taxi driver's license, driving their own vehicle, which needs a taxi vehicle license,"

Uber don't check that they do, in fact they positively avoids doing so

Just like any other non-employee taxi operator.

Er, no. A local firm isn't allowed to trade without the correct licenses (or at least that's the law here in the UK). Uber escape such legal control by being an Internet based service with no real geographical presence anywhere. Didn't stop France finding someone to arrest though (and good on the French I say).

"Just another remote taxi booking service."

Er, again no. Uber's massive mistake is to not understand what a license does and means. Does a license protect the consumer? Yes. Does it protect the company? Also yes. A taxi company doing everything by the book according to local rules can hardly be blamed (or sued) if one of their drivers commits a grievous crime.

On the other hand an unlicensed company like Uber would be liable should something terrible happen. Ok so they're American with a lot of expensive lawyers on a retainer so they're difficult to sue on their home turf. But elsewhere in the world that doesn't count for shit. An Uber driver rapes a UK customer, Uber are going to lose in court; joint venture, or some other such entanglement. People go to jail for that kind of thing.

As much as anything else Uber are exploiting their executives around the world. They're the ones who will carry the can in countries outside of the USA, as their French chaps are now finding out. If I were a non-US Uber officer, I'd seriously consider quitting before it's too late.

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bazza
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Re: Wrong subtitle Reg

Maybe or maybe not done before, but well worth repeating!

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Google says its AI will jetwash all traces of malodorous spam from your box

bazza
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They bought it

Google purchased Postini, and have now rebranded it. They didn't invent it at all.

In the process they've not exactly covered themselves in glory. The migration was a fairly shoddy. The web view of your spam folder is now not viewable from inside email clients such as Outlook. They've gone and changed the terms and conditions without asking, allowing them to rummage round your email for advertising hints ("to improve the service we offer"), whilst also charging customers for that privilege. Postini charged but didn't rummage, made them quite attractive.

They can only filter spam from email because they now see such a large portion of the whole world's email. No one else can hope to compete, because unless everyone for some reason decides to send their email to them they cannot get a wide enough view of emails to spot the replicas. So Google have a monopoly on it, allowing them to rip off the market.

They've taken something good and made it less good. Thanks. Thanks a bundle.

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How a Cali court ruling could force a complete rethink of search results

bazza
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Re: Irritating

Your counter-example is flawed and stupid.

Which outcome would you rather have when going to the your local supermarket?

You: Hi, do you have any Grey Goose?

Employee: Nope!

Who would ask for a specific brand if they actually wanted a generic thing? If one is interested in vodka generally, ask for goddamned vodka. Being told that a shop has vodka and refusing to confirm or deny the availability of a specifically requested brand is not helpful at all and a waste of time. And possibly illegal.

I hate when comments aren't exactly relevant to the post being discussed. When I jump into the comments I expect it to be rant free and on topic! It's these lazy commentators that fill up the comments with pages of off topic rants, I just wish they'd actually pay attention to the thing I came to discuss.

Did you read that before you posted it, or are you just being ironic?

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bazza
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Irritating

I'm increasingly irritated by search engines returning results I'm not interested in, and Amazon are just another example. If a search returns no result, I want to know that instead of having to plough through the vast swathes of useless results just in case the one I want is actually in there somewhere on the 10th page.

When I use + and quotes on a Google search string, I just wish they'd actually pay attention to that. Instead more often than not they they present a bunch of pages that actually do not feature the words I've supposedly specified as being compulsory in the search. Not useful at all. I long for the days of Alta Vista which simply did nothing more than straight string matching, not some hocus pocus bullshit algorithm whose only purpose is to encourage me to view pages that I already know I don't want to see.

Search engines have become the lazy answer to poor organisation and maintenance of data, and there's plenty of services out there like Google, Amazon, Bing, etc. that exploit that laziness as an excuse for pushing adverts. Microsoft's help is appalling these days, where pressing the help button on an in focus dialog box generally fails to being up the help page for that box.

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BB10 AND Android? How BlackBerry can have its cake and eat it

bazza
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"More to the point it would be better if BB switched to current winphones rather than android....the concept of BB making "secure" phones is laughable when you consider the point of an android phone is to SHARE your data, not secure it......."

There hardly seems any point BB taking on WinPhone as an OS, native or VM'ed. WinPhone does not do the enterprise thing anywhere near as well as BB10 and is miserably unpopular on the consumer market too. Seems precious little to be won there.

Also if BB can run a full Android as a VM, it would be able to share all the data it can without affecting the the BB10 VM's stuff. Technically this is a step backwards (BlackBerry Balance is a far more elegant solution to the BYOD problem), but if it works in the market place then you'd have to say it's the better solution.

Now, if only they'd do a BB10 slider phone...

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UH OH: Windows 10 will share your Wi-Fi key with your friends' friends

bazza
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Re: Oh that's just great.

It would be interesting for see it tested in court, though I would not want to the the one having to rely on it!

The courts in the UK are notoriously slow to pay heed to what actually happens in the world of science and technology. Overturning established precedence is very difficult, especially if it has already been relied on to convict a bunch of people whose cases would have to be reopened. They just hate acknowledging mistakes. There would be a single opportunity to do so in the first relevant court case after Windows 10 goes on sale, after which it would become very difficult. As things stand it will be extremely difficult to persuade a judge that Windows 10 is in any way different or relevant.

So a guest SSID it is, and the password will change after someone has visited.

Sane law enforcement is becoming increasingly difficult with the tech that is being developed. It is becoming increasingly difficult to have both technology freedom and stopping bad people exploiting it to help them harm others.

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bazza
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Oh that's just great.

In most countries in the world, the owner of a WiFi network is legally responsible for the traffic flowing through it. Someone downloads dodgy porn, it's the owner the police will prosecute.

So that's fine, you don't give out your WiFi password to all and sundry, least of all your kids.

With WiFi Sense, most people will lose control of who has their WiFi password. May as well just run an open network.

Sure, it's easy enough to stop it happening, but to do that first you have to know that it is happening and then take the necessary precautions. However most people will be utterly clueless about all of that, and most will be completely vulnerable to the inevitable consequences.

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KRAKKOOM! SpaceX Falcon supply mission to ISS EXPLODES minutes after launch

bazza
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Re: Physics Says...

"As pointed out above, it seems* more likely that the problem was a loss of pressure"

Elon Musk tweeted that, "There was an overpressure event in the upper stage liquid oxygen tank. Data suggests counterintuitive cause".

I'm presuming that if there had been a puncture and loss of oxygen or something else that provided pressurised structural integrity he would have tweeted accordingly, but he didn't.

We'll see what the counterintuitive cause is thought to be sooner or later.

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bazza
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Re: Physics Says...

Sorry, should read:

An explosion would have destroyed everything, yet the first stage was clearly still operating after the upper stage had got into difficulties.

One day I shall try and learn English...

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bazza
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Physics Says...

...that the only way the pressure could rise in the oxygen tank is if

1) More oxygen were added

2) The oxygen warmed up

3) The tank got smaller

The first is not possible. The second seems unlikely; a fire near oxygen normally would result in some sort of explosion, not a gentle warming up. An explosion would have destroyed everything, yet the first stage was clearly still operating after the first stage had got into difficulties. So it might have to be the third.

That implies that there was a structural failure of the upper stage resulting in the oxygen tank crumpling up as the stage collapsed lengthwise.

If it is a structural collapse, that's pretty bad. That's the most basic and easiest part of rocket science. It would be most unfortunate if this were indeed the cause of the failure. Some panel falling off from higher up could result in a puncture, which I suppose might weaken the stage structure. There did appear to be quite a lot of gas streaming off the upper stages during the ascent.

As Mark85 quoted, "The rocket science is the easy part, the doing is the hard part.". A launch failure due to a structural failure obviously won't help convince any future astronaut that it has been built right, never mind designed right. Safe flight operations is largely about having the right process and sticking to it; SpaceX's process clearly still has some flaws which need to ironed out.

As the great Feynman said:

"For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled."

I'm hoping that Elon Musk has that put up on a large poster opposite his desk in his office, and everyone else's too. NASA were serially guilty of putting PR first, and it cost Astronauts' lives.

Anyway, I'm sure they'll find the problem and get it ironed out. I hope so. If there's one good thing to come out of this, it should be the question, "What else have we missed?".

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