* Posts by tony72

203 posts • joined 2 Jul 2008

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High Court: You've made our SH*T list – corked pirate torrent sites double in a day

tony72
Facepalm

Re: No one cares...

The money is not entirely wasted; the goverment is providing the useful service of highlighting the most active and useful torrent sites on the internet. Any pirates or would-be pirates looking for new torrent sites to check out, and willing to spend the five minutes it probably takes to circumvent the block, should make that list their first stop!

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Ten excellent FREE PC apps to brighten your Windows

tony72

Re: VLC

To whoever gave that a thumbs down, I do hope you know that until about four years ago, VLC didn't even support hardware-accelerated decoding at all, and in most of the time since it did get support, it was partial, and in some cases actually ended up with little net benefit in CPU usage. The latest version still defaults to having hardware-accelerated decoding disabled, at least on windows, and there appears to be no support for it in Raspbian. This may all be due to the cross-platform nature of VLC, but the comment about VLC's support for hardware-accelerated decoding is very much factual.

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tony72
Alert

Opinions differ on this; personally I would never use tools like CCleaner, and I have seen systems completely trashed by using such tools. They do things that you either don't need to do and don't benefit from, or else can do more safely manually. There are plenty of articles on the dangers of registry cleaners, and on how little good they do, however as that article says, there will always be those who swear by such programs, and say they've never had a problem themselves, so I guess you pays your money and you takes your chances.

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tony72

Re: VLC

+1 for MPC-HC. I usually have a copy of VLC installed as well, but it's a player (/streaming server/converter) of last-resort. VLC has always been way behind on hardware-accelerated decoding, so lots of battery suckage on your ultrabook or tablet, and it's behind in other ways as well, but it has its uses.

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Bladerunner sequel might actually be good. Harrison Ford is in it

tony72
Happy

Well, going in with low expectations is the surest way to avoid disappointment. You seem to have that covered!

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The Pirate Bay co-founder exits jail, now, er, free to eat vegan food

tony72

Re: Does he actually *want* to remove copyright?

It's not my model, and I'm not advocating any particular system personally, but you're kind of missing a few obvious points, so I'll bother with a very late reply.

"Maybe my costs are different. Maybe I sell to a smaller but more affluent market. If it costs a lot to get an orchestra together but classical music lovers are more affluent on average, how would I be shoe-horned into a "X plays = Y pennies" model? If I make a specialist film that is not much interest to most, but highly valued by a certain group, who are you to say I can't sell to them directly?"

Who says you can't? Not having copyright protection doesn't mean that you can't sell the product directly. Many artists already practically give away digital downloads of their works, but sell premium versions on vinyl or limited edition CD, with extras. Seems to work pretty well for them.

"Customer pays for what they want is vastly simpler than any centralized system"

Simple maybe, but look at the context here. Pirate Bay users aren't paying for what they want. It remains to be seen if someone can assemble the technical and legal machinery to put the piracy genie back in its bottle, but right now it's not looking good. If piracy can't be beaten, then a system that assures artists of some remuneration if they produce decent work is surely better than what they're earning from Pirate Bay users.

"And if your model is an alternative to copyright, how invasive would you have to be to actually guess what people are listening to / watching?"

Ridiculous argument. If downloading is legal, there's no trouble monitoring what gets downloaded, it's no different than the way download charts are assembled now. And a large percentage of people aren't shy about sharing what they watch or listen via social media; you can go to trakt.tv right now and see all the tv shows and movies trakt users, have watched in recent times, and their ratings, automatically scrobbled from their HTPCs and media players. Go look.

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tony72

Re: Does he actually *want* to remove copyright?

Getting rid of copyright doesn't necessarily mean not remunerating artists. For example schemes such as a form of tax or levy, with revenue distributed to artists based on some measure of popularity (perhaps some formula involving number of downloads and ratings) have been mooted. This is not such a crazy idea, since the taxpayer already supports the arts in various ways in most European countries, so this would just be taking that to the next level. I wouldn't want to get into the pros and cons of any particular scheme anyway, but it's unlikely that anyone advocating the abolition of copyright intends to do so in a vacuum.

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tony72

Re: This is what it takes to get into the high security wing of your local clink.

To be fair, drugs and prostitution make a significant contribution to a country's economy (I couldn't be bothered looking for a specific link for Sweden, but I'm sure it's comparable to the UK), whereas piracy is probably a net drain on the economy. So at least the drug dealers and pimps probably have a case for being left alone. Bit harder to defend the murderers and rapists though :).

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Yes! It's DRONE PORN. And we don't mean shiny pics of UAVs

tony72

Re: How dull

You know, I like porn as much as the next guy, but this felt to me like the couples were photobombing otherwise perfectly good landscape sequences. Good gimmick, I suppose, though.

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Securobods RAGE over $600k Kickstarter Tor box components

tony72

Re: Never mind the source of this box

What, you can't think of any reasons to protect ones privacy other than downloading pirated movies and porn? No consideration for whistleblowers? No consideration for people living under totalitarian regimes trying to avoid a trip to the gulag? Oh, the depths we have sunk to.

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tony72

Never mind the source of this box

What I want to know is how bad is this type of product for Tor? I met someone recently who was using Tor Browser; turns out he had no single clue what Tor was or how it worked, he just wanted to download from those file lockers that restrict you to downloading 1 file every two hours or whatever, and Tor Browser lets him circumvent that restriction and download as many files as he likes, by changing his apparent IP address each time. That's the trouble with making something too easy to use, you let the riff-raff in. With products like this Anonabox gettinging out there, get ready for Tor to become a lot less useful for legitimate purposes as it gets hammered by people downloading stuff.

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Snapchat 'hack' pics mostly clothed user snaps, odd bits of legacy pr0n – report

tony72

Re: the local Police Officer won't have to call round

"... which begs the question - if the analyst had seen any "obviously under age" subjects while investigating, would they have said so?"

Well, he's not the only person who's seen the archive, so if he claimed there was no obviously under-age material and there actually was, it would have been a pretty obvious lie.

Also, contrary to slightly hysterical popular opinion, the law is not usually applied in a completely blind and stupid fashion; if you come into possession of some under-age material entirely inadvertently, and then do the correct thing thereafter (report/delete/etc), you are not going to be in trouble.

So no good reason for the analyst to lie.

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NAKED CELEBRITY PICS LAW BOMB dropped on ad giant Google

tony72

Re: Am I the only one

I did look (doesn't take much effort), but you didn't miss much. They were mostly pretty much as crap and uninteresting as pretty much every celeb set tape/leak that has ever occurred. As you implied, if you want to watch porn, there is not exactly a shortage of the stuff online, so a few grainy nude selfies of some celebs most of whom you've never heard of aren't much cause for excitement.

However I don't feel the slightest bit dirty, I felt a natural curiosity to see what all the fuss was about, and whether my low expectations would be met. And there is to me a certain degree of interest in seeing what certain celebs look like when they're not all made up and photoshopped for a magazine.

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tony72

Easy money?

1. Set iCould password to "Password1"

2. Upload nude selfies

3. Wait to get "hacked", pics all over the net

4. Sue Google

For those slutebrities who can't quite bring themselves to "leak" a sextape, I guess this is plan B.

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Want to see the back of fossil fuels? Calm down, hippies. CAPITALISM has an answer

tony72

I hope you're right

I hope you're right. The reality is third-world countries just aren't going to accept any measures to save the environment if those measures put a brake on their economies, not while their populations are still poorer than developed countries. And developed countries aren't going to take measures that put a brake on their economies while they're struggling to sustain any kind of growth, and getting caught up by the likes of China and India. So politically, nothing of significance is likely to happen in the forseeable future, regardless of how much talking gets done, and how many climate summits are held.

The only way we will get on top of climate change is if, as you say in the article, the necessary measures actually make direct economic sense, and we'd want to do them anyway. So whether it's the things mentioned in this article, or other technologies that people are working on, such as cost-effective synthetic fuels or biofuels that don't use food stocks, I hope things do indeed come along that make it so switching away from fossil fuels actually becomes a no-brainer, and it certainly doesn't seem impossible.

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tony72

Re: The problem with this article...

But surely if we were to stop burning fossil fuels for energy, that wouldn't stop us from drilling for and refining an amount of fossil fuels for use in industry? Petrochemicals would clearly still have value, so there would still be an industry to support them.

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iPhone 6: The final straw for Android makers eaten alive by the data parasite?

tony72
Thumb Up

Re: Once some players drop out then....

Congrats on making it though an Android article without using the "landfill Android" slur though Andrew, you almost managed to sound balanced there.

Just like the transition the PC business went through when PCs became mainstream, the smartphone business will transition from a high margin business to a predominantly low margin business, and there will be casualties along the way. My first laptop was a 100MHz Pentium Olivetti with 8MB of RAM and Windows 95, I hate to think how much that cost in today's money. Olivetti, like many others, isn't around any more, but there are still plenty of people making fantastic Windows PCs, and I am pretty sure there will be plenty of companies making money out of Android smartphones in the years to come, even if they aren't all the same companies in the business right now.

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Buying memory in an iPhone 6: Like wiping your bottom with dollar bills

tony72

Re: "A little eBay shopping and you can find 128GB Micro SD cards for under a tenner"

Yes, although even at a more realistic £80 for a 128GB card, Apple is still 2.5x more expensive, so I guess the point of the article still stands.

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New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone

tony72

Re: Bytes?

Worried about server load, I guess.

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'Aaaah FFS, 'amazeballs' has made it into the OXFORD DICTIONARY'

tony72

Re: Eh ?

I know, cray cray, right?

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Samsung Galaxy Tab S 8.4: 4G Android tablet is easy to swallow

tony72

Re: Whither Nexus 8

Ditto, my first gen Nexus 7 is still in pretty good nick, bar a creaky edge to the screen, but it's always had those image persistence issues that some units had, and the speakers are pathetic, and the lack of a card slot has occasionally irked me when traveling. If there was a cheaper, wifi-only version of this Samsung, preferably without the Samsung bloat (dream on I guess), I'd buy it right now, but I'm not quite sold on it as it is.

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Google's Pankhurst doodle doo-doo shows the perils of using Google to find stuff out

tony72

Yes, I was trying really hard to see some sort of ironic angle to this article, but I really can't. If there hadn't been a birth certificate or official record, or if there was some significant reason given to indicate that the official records were wrong, then there might be a case to answer, but that doesn't seem to be the case here. In fact it's the opposite, a good reason is suggested as to why Mrs Pankhurst might have claimed to have been born a day earlier than she actually was. Wikipedia is 100% in the right here.

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'iPhone 6' survives FRENZIED STABBING. Truly, it is the JESUS Phone

tony72
Coat

Surely...

...to be truly the Jesus Phone, it would have to die from the stabbing, then come back three days later? Christ was, in fact, not impervious to penetration by nails, thorns, and spears, although I do not recall if a knife was ever tested.

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We got behind the wheel of a Tesla S electric car. We didn't hate it

tony72

Re: There are cheaper, less environmentally harmful options.

"The difference is, that the Prius (and most other cars) also have mechanical switches for the important stuff, like turning on the lights!"

I don't know for sure, but I suspect you still have regular stalk controls for those basic operations in the Tesla too, from a google image search they certainly appear to be there. I'm sure you can control lots of additional parameters from the touchscreen, but they're not likely to change or remove the basic and familiar controls that people learn to drive with. You can quite clearly see what appear to be conventional lights and wiper stalks in this image of the Tesla S dash.

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How practical is an electric car in London?

tony72

Re: On Street Parking

I won't cover the same ground as other posters, who have already pointed out some issues with the reality of what you suggest. But I would have to ask, why do you find the end of the ICE even a desirable thing? The electricity your electric cars run on isn't created by magic, much of it comes from fossil fuels, and you can work out the emissions by looking at the energy mix supplying the grid you are charging on. I don't have figures for the UK, but in the USA, electric cars in areas with the cleanest energy mix were equivalent to a petrol with a 95mpg fuel efficiency, but in the areas with the dirtiest energy mix, they were only equivalent to a petrol car with a less than 40mpg fuel efficiency. Read this report for example, excerpt "About 37 percent of Americans live in regions where a Leaf’s greenhouse gas emissions would equate to a gasoline-powered vehicle rated at 41 to 50 m.p.g.". I get 50+mpg from my diesel Scirocco.

With combustion engines becoming ever cleaner, and the energy mix of our electric grids not changing significantly anytime soon, it's simply wrong to promote electric cars on environmental grounds. Clean petrol/diesel cars are competitive on emissions, and the other advantages are huge.

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Eating a fat bacon sarnie? Have a defibrillator handy

tony72

Statistics

The statistics being used to maximum scare effect of course. The study is concerned with isolating the effect of processed meat, hence they quite sensibly and reasonably adjust for all other factors. However in the real world, your processed meat consumption is just one of many factors affecting your chances of cardiovascular disease. So even if you are in the worst category, your real-world heart failure risk increase due to processed meat will not be 2.43 times higher than your bacon-abstainer friends; once you adjust back in all the things they adjusted out in order to obtain their measurement of interest, it will probably be an overall increase of a few percent. If you are healthy, not overweight, do some exercise and don't have a genetic predisposition to cardiovascular problems, then enjoy that fry-up and don't worry.

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UK govt preps World War 2 energy rationing to keep the lights on

tony72

Re: Not renewables...

"Make no mistake, any strategic move to more gas, coal or nuclear would be unpopular with the greenies."

I guess the question is what percentage of the population count themselves amongst the "greenies". I know the environmentalist types are good at chaining themselves to trees and generally kicking up a lot of fuss, but if, as I suspect is the case, the large majority of the population would rather make sure the lights stay on first and foremost, then maybe the politicians could maybe grow a pair and do what needs to be done?

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I am NOT a PC repair man. I will NOT get your iPad working

tony72

Re: Apparel Solution

I'd like a t-shirt that says "I will fix your PC. But not for free." The fact is most of the bastards who come to you trying to get you to fix their PCs and whatnot for free, would never spend the same number of hours helping you out for free. The few that would, no problem. But for the rest, I have come to find it deeply offensive to be asked, unless the request starts with "How much would you charge..."

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You know all those resources we're about to run out of? No, we aren't

tony72

Re: I would argue the situation was even worse

I'm not not sure it's even that. We've all been there; a manager wants to know how long something is going to take, or how much it's going to cost. You start explaining what's involved, and analysing the factors that might impact the answer. The manager holds up his hand, and says "Give me a number." So you make up a number, he puts it in the plan, and that number that you just pulled out of your arse is now a "fact". Management types and leaders like the certainty of such "facts" so they can forge ahead confidently with their plans, and look competent and assertive, but it doesn't really matter if the "facts" are actually true, as long as they came from a sufficiently credible source to let said manager or leader make the claim, and have someone to blame if it's wrong. This is especially true of politicians making long term plans, because they're going to be long gone from their post before the shit hits the fan. They're perfectly capable of understanding the problems, they just don't need to, because they just need plans that sound credible, not plans that actually work.

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Netflix FREEZES prices for existing UK users to stop them quitting vid-streaming service

tony72

Dell charges £5 to switch on power-saving for new PCs (it takes 5 clicks)

tony72

At least they sound like standard power profiles

Dell used to ship some of their laptops with non-standard power profiles that did unexpected (to me anyway) things, like disabling the wired ethernet port when running on battery; sure, I can see the logic in it, but it was a serious head-scratcher that time when a customer couldn't control a piece of equipment in the field, and yet all the diagnostics I got him to run back in the office said everything was working! Personally I'd pay Dell to leave Windows default settings the fuck alone, if I need them changing, I'll change them.

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BT finally admits its Home Hub router scuppers some VPN connections

tony72

Back when we were on ADSL at my workplace, BT rolled out a firmware update for the BT Business hub that scuppered our incoming VPN connections, and they couldn't seem to give us any kind of fix; we had to dump their router and replace it with a Draytek.

When we got fibre, the BT engineer strongly advised us not to use the supplied BT Business Hub 3.0; we used it anyway, just so if there was any problem with the new connection, it couldn't be blamed on our 3rd party router. However after less than two months, the BT hub stopped working, just no WAN connection. So we had to dump it and replace it a Netgear.

Seems like one way or another, BT's routers find a way to be junk.

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Move over Microsoft: RealNetworks has a GOOGLE problem

tony72

You have to wonder who participated in that brand study they mentioned. Pretty much everyone I know considered RealPlayer to be a micro-step away from being malware. It was banned from any machines I was responsible for back when it was still common, and from what came across in the article, it looks like RealPlayer Cloud is going right on the banlist too.

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Hey, MoJ, we're not your Buddi: Brit firm abandons 'frustrating' crim-tagging contract

tony72

That is a quote without full context. The article says that Buddi opted out of the contract after the MoJ changed the specifications, so it seems safe to assume that the context of the quote is that the MoJ wanted something substantially different from what Buddi thought they had signed up to provide. That happens with government bodies and large organisations. A lot.

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'No, I CAN'T write code myself,' admits woman in charge of teaching our kids to code

tony72

So what made Silva choose Lottie Dexter to lead the initiative?

"So what made Silva choose Lottie Dexter to lead the initiative? It's hard to tell."

No, no it's not.

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Globe grabbin,’ sphere slammin’, orb-tossin’, pill poppin’... Speedball

tony72

Re: SB2 remains one of my all time favourites

Playing SpeedBall 2 on my mate's Amiga convinced me of the absolute necessity to buy an Amiga.

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Seagate's LaCie whips out bonkers posh silver-plated storage ball

tony72

Shiny!

I'd put it next to my magic 8-ball, but the magic 8-ball says don't buy it.

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On the matter of shooting down Amazon delivery drones with shotguns

tony72

Re: Guns won't work, so let's look at alternatives...

I wonder if one of those TrackingPoint smart rifles would work on drones? The blurbs talk about hitting a moving target at 1000 yards, but I think they had things like deer in mind rather than drones. I imagine the software could be adapted if they wanted to do such a thing.

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French court: Google, Microsoft en ami must say 'au revoir' to pirates

tony72

France is weird

I understand the rationale for blocking the actual sites, but what's up with blocking them from appearing in search results?

If you click a link to a blocked site in your search results, and you get a page saying "Site blocked because ABC", then you're informing the user about the illegality of the site, letting them know that that type of site is blocked, and warning them about the type of sites they visit. That's what happens here in the UK at the moment (sort of).

If however you try and disappear the sites from the search results entirely, you miss that informational aspect of the block, and it also seems much more like sinister censorship; it's one thing to block content, it's another to block content in such a way that people may not even know it's blocked, or even that it existed in the future.

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UK.gov's web filtering mission creep: Now it plans to block 'extremist' websites

tony72

Re: Even the dumbest porn-addicted teen...

Assuming we're still talking about Cleanfeed, it's not simple DNS redirecting, read up on how Cleanfeed works in wikipedia. The current blocks used against torrent sites etc by BT, VM et al work even if you are using third-party DNS servers outside the ISPs control. A particular IP address flags a request to be checked against the blacklist, but the blacklist can then block individual pages etc at an IP address, so it's not nearly as crude as simple DNS manipulation. However proxy servers etc can obviously still be used.

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Nookie becomes, um, a virtual reality for Oculus Rift gadget gamers

tony72

Re: Surprised

Or just open-minded and willing to try new things? Virtual sex with your partner instead of phone sex?

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Netflix, YouTube video killed the BitTorrent star? Duo gobble web traffic

tony72

Where's the porn?

No registration link to the report, if this site lets me post links. "Flash video" comes in at 1.72% of downstream traffic, below SSL and iTunes at 1.89 and 1.9 respectively. Is that covering all the porn tube sites? I'm surprised it's so low.

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Smartwatch deathmatch: Rivals battle for total ARM DOMINATION

tony72

They don't run apps, or at least the Citizen Proximity doesn't, it doesn't even have a display other than the watch face, so it's not really surprising it doesn't feature in smartwatch articles; ain't be no smartwatch. That having been said, it's a lot closer to something I'd actually buy; the fact that you don't need to charge the thing up is a deal maker, if it supported Android, I'd have one.

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Mac fans: You don't need Windows to get ripped off in tech support scams

tony72

TeamViewer is a very widely used and perfectly legitimate remote control/support application, I'm amazed you haven't heard of it. If these scammers abused it, or did something to make it hard to remove, that's hardly down to the TeamViewer developers.

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Congrats on MP3ing your music... but WHY bother? Time for my ripping yarn

tony72

What did I just read?

I guess El Reg pays by the line. What was all that about? Was there a point in there somewhere? As far as I can tell, the entire article could be distilled down to "I have a lot of CDs, and I'm not sure if I can be arsed to rip them." Did I miss something? Is the article soliciting opinions on this deeply intriguing theme, or just rambling about it? I think I want my five minutes back.

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Shopping list for Tesco: Eggs, milk, bread, tablets (the £60 7in Android kind)

tony72

Re: Hudl

If the Spectrum had been launched at one period, the top-of-the range model would have been called the Spectrum Turbo. At another time, it might have been called the eSpectrum. And a couple of years ago (Tesco is behind the times) it might have been called Spectrm. Such is the nature of silly naming fads.

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OK, so we paid a bill late, but did BT have to do this?

tony72

I was shocked

One of our users reported this message a few months ago, but he'd closed it by then, so I sort of dismissed it, but told him if he saw it again, to give me a call before closing it. Next time around I saw what it was, and managed to confirm that it was an authentic BT message. I don't know what determines who actually sees the message, because only two people in the company (of about 15 people) have actually had it. But personally I think this is completely out of order; our accounts people pay BT invoices as a matter of course, and as far as I can tell we've always payed on time within a day or two's margin. Send a friggin reminder like everybody else. I would drop BT in a flash if it was down to me, we only use them for broadband, and it's really just inertia keeping us with them.

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Microsoft announces iPad amnesty for fanbois

tony72

LOL

Apple should launch a counter-scheme, and offer $50 for your Surface RT, deadpan.

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Oh noes! New 'CRISIS DISASTER' at Fukushima! Oh wait, it's nothing. Again

tony72

"It's not global news. It's not national news. It would barely even be local news, in a sane world."

Too true. Unfortunately not much actually is significant news, and the 24 hour news channels have an awful lot of time to fill. They get as much mileage as they can out of situations like Syria and Egypt, but those kind of things do drag on so, and there's only so many pathetic sob stories and excruciating human interest puff pieces you can take before even an over-hyped scare story like the current Fukushima "crisis" becomes at least a little entertaining.

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Typical! Google's wonder-dongle is a solution looking for a problem

tony72

Re: rubbish!

Yes. In any case, the Raspberry Pi is a solution looking for a problem, in fact that's the whole point of it, and people don't seem to hold that against it. Google is getting the Chromecast out there at an impulse buy price to see what people do with it, and if it gains some traction, companies may well start looking to use it specifically to deliver their content.

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