* Posts by Mike Shepherd

420 posts • joined 23 Aug 2008

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My God, I've got nothing on! Microsoft's $200m Wunderlist is down

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: That migration to SQL Server's working really well then...

I don't know why, but in the country where this expression originated, there is presumably some appeal in the notion of eating dog food. It doesn't export well.

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Larry Ellison today said really nice things about rival Amazon's cloud

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

If you needed proof...

This man is proof that all the money in the world can't fix ugly.

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Jakarta be kidding me! Google gets $400m tax bill from Indonesia

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

You bet

"Google Indonesia has been incorporated as a local company in Indonesia since 2011. We have been and will continue to cooperate with the government..."

You bet. Governments have guns.

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Google: There are three certainties in life – death, taxes and IPv6

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: IPv6 is great...

At least, when Google knows where every client machine is, it should have no difficulty paying VAT and Corporation Tax to the right country.

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Google tries to lure .NET devs with PowerShell cloud bait

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: Google drops

I was disappointed that Microsoft's BASIC interpreter (for MS-DOS 1, no support for subdirectories!) finally stopped working when I moved to 64-bit Windows 7, but that was probably an extreme case.

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Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: Google drops

We are like rats to these Pied Pipers (Google and the rest).

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Great British Block-Off: GCHQ floats plan to share its DNS filters

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Fix

"This will allow the public to be protected from malware or state-sponsored attacks..."

Add: "and anything the Ministry of Informaiton would prefer you not to read".

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You should install smart meters even if they're dumb, says flack

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: Smart Meter Mis-selling

The peak will never shift, because not "everyone" will start "doing their laundry at 2am". Most of us will still do our laundry when the machine gets full of dirty clothes or when we realise there's something in there that we need this afternoon.

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Come in HTTP, your time is up: Google Chrome to shame leaky non-HTTPS sites from January

Mike Shepherd
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Unsupported browser

As volunteer for our local history society, I host and maintain their ASP.NET web site. Our aim is to publish on-line as many of our exhibits as possible, but the site has no membership system, nor does it process payments.

I've run an SSL site (when this wasn't as straightforward as now), but I don't plan to burden the society (or myself) with obtaining and maintaining a site certificate while we transfer no secret information.

It will be easy, however, to identify requests from Chrome and to include in our response a warning banner that the browser is unsupported (since it may show spurious security warnings) with links to alternatives.

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Cooky crumbles: Apple mulls yanking profits out of Europe and into US

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Poor old Apple

"Poor old Apple, no what which way it turns, some government is starting to take away its hard-earned cash".

Now they know how employees feel. Except that in the UK we pay much more, because National Insurance contributions allow high tax on employees' pay and a more modest rate on "investors" (who can move their money elsewhere).

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Watch SpaceX's rocket dramatically detonate, destroying a $200m Facebook satellite

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"...destroying a $200m Facebook satellite"

Every cloud has a silver lining.

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Tim Cook: EU lied about Apple taxes. Watch out Ireland, this is a coup!

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Pass me the Kleenex

"...the EU was seeking to expand its powers over national governments...a devastating blow to the sovereignty of EU member states... Ireland is being picked on and this is unacceptable".

Oh, worthy man, who sets aside all self-interest to defend the downtrodden countries of the EU!

Well, maybe not all self-interest.

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Height of stupidity: Heathrow airliner buzzed by drone at 7,000ft

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Show us the video evidence

At 500 knots, I think even an experienced pilot would struggle to distinguish a drone from an errant Tesco carrier bag, unless the drone were flying in much the same direction at much the same speed (which seems unlikely).

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UK IT consultant subject to insane sex ban order mounts legal challenge

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: "He was found not guilty, therefore he is innocent"

"Not guilty...That does not mean, nor can it mean, the person is blameless in everything they have done in life".

You are quite correct. So maybe we should hang you, just in case? It won't disturb our sleep. After all, you've as good as admitted that you're "guilty of something".

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Russia is planning to use airships as part of a $240bn transport project

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

1957: Russia is planning to launch an artificial satellite

Nice idea in theory, but there's good reasons nobody else has succeeded.

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Russia tells Google to cough up some loose change in Android monopoly probe

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: Freudian Slip?

The original says "наших потребителях", which could be translated as "our consumers" or "our users". Don't place too much faith in machine translation.

The original also refers to "...продукция...поставляется на территорию Российской Федерации...", which is something like "products imported to the Russian Federation", but this has been translated as "products...supplied to the Russian Federation", which could be understood as "supplied to the Russian government", a notion which is not in the original.

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Intel's latest diversity report shows numbers at a standstill

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

???

Who are these people talking about GPA and what is it anyway?

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Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Equality for all !

Surely people with below-average intelligence represent about half the population. Is Intel doing enough to recruit them, too?

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Watch hot 'stars' shower ... again. It's Perseid meteor showtime

Mike Shepherd
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IT Angle

Confused

If the first illustration represents a meteor shower, where is the radiant?

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Hot iron: Knights Landing hits 100 gigaflops in plasma physics benchmark

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Plasma simulation

So, finally, free electricity from fusion really is "just around the corner"? Hello, hello? Operator...?

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Quip away, but Microsoft Excel 365's REST APIs win the day

Mike Shepherd
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Huh?

Huh?

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Private moonshot gets the green light from US authorities

Mike Shepherd
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Happy

Re: "the Moon is a potential future source of rare earths"

Interesting that Arthur C Clarke wrote about the possible hazards of moon dust in 1961.

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Ofgem sets up database so energy companies can spam Brits

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Younger consumers may not remember...

...that there was a time when we didn't have to do this.

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The dev-astating truth: What's left to develop? Send in the machines

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: "According to some observers, there's still some way to go"

I'm not missing the scale of the problem we're trying to solve. I'm pointing out that the problem arises from a poor approach to quality control. I don't want to change important subsystems in my computer every day either: it's the suppliers who want to do that.

You say that "We implement software systems precisely so they can be changed". This is like saying "My house is built of bricks, so it can survive a tough environment", then firing mortars at it to get your money's worth.

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Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"According to some observers, there's still some way to go"

If cars were like computers, we'd still have to "get out and get under" almost every day. We'd spend half our evenings applying the latest compulsory updates and fixes, but still wonder what difference they made.

The notion that the computer industry is approaching maturity is about as comical as it gets. Maybe it's at the stage of the automobile sometime in the 1930s. There simply isn't a comparable approach to quality (achieving a product that works and doesn't need tinkering throughout its life).

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Hello, Barclays? Why hello, John Smith. We meet again

Mike Shepherd
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Happy

Cheered up my day

"Each person's voice is as unique as their fingerprint...Therefore, when a customer calls up...the technology will be able to identify them...".

"Barclays voice recognition technology...has been "fully tested".

You couldn't make this stuff up. Do you think they really believe it?

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Russian spy aircraft are flying over Britain – and the MoD's cool with it

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Submarines

Submarines, properly managed, are basically undetectable (unless you're very close or very lucky).

The only defence is "You don't know where mine are, either".

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Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: "taskings"?

It hides the embarrassment some feel when using clear and simple language. Hence, "function" becomes "functionality" (and perhaps eventually "functionalityismness").

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Church organist nabbed for playing glory hole in excelsis

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: IT Angle?

Maybe the moral is to understand your market before making the sales pitch.

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Brit chip bods ARM quietly piling up cash. Softbank will be happy

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"at least doubles the employee headcount in the UK over the next five years"

It's all so easy on a spreadsheet: just type *2. This ripples through to double the productivity, double the profits, double everything...until you realise you lost contact with reality somewhere along the way.

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By 2040, computers will need more electricity than the world can generate

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

But

But quantum computers will select from the superposition of all possibilities, thereby solving all problems simultaneously, leading us to the broad, sunlit uplands, vistas of contentment and world peace. There should be a world market for, oh, maybe five such computers.

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Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Forgive me

Forgive me for asking a naïve question, but what will all these computers be computing (other than how soon they'll run out of electricity so we don't have to do it)?

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Glassdoor spaffs users' email addresses in bcc fail

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"We are incredibly sorry for our error"

No, I don't believe it, either.

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Ofcom should push for fibre – Ex BT CTO

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"The idea that we should be content with mediocre services is a very British point of view"

No, it's a very Post Office point of view. It's the view which, 35 years on, still reigns at BT.

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Mobile broadband now cheaper than wired, for 95 per cent of humanity

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

...58 per cent...aren't able to watch cat videos...

Never speak disrespectfully of cat videos, Algernon. Their demands and enthusiasm make things cheaper for the rest of us.

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US standards lab says SMS is no good for authentication

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"SMS is no good for authentication"

...just as HMRC starts to use it for self-assessment returns etc.

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Top IT bod Sally Howes leaves the UK's National Audit Office

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: So, apparently a competent person leaves

Sunt lacrimae rerum.

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MPs tell BT: Lay more fibre or face split with Openreach

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"Fibre to the home"

"Fibre to the home" was a notion from the 1970s :

http://www.techradar.com/news/world-of-tech/how-the-uk-lost-the-broadband-race-in-1990-1224784

Over 35 (thirty-five) years later, how many homes have it?

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Dear Tesla, stop calling it autopilot – and drivers are not your guinea pigs

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"Drivers are not your guinea pigs"

It may be uncomfortable to hear it, but it's worth killing a few hundred, maybe a few thousand people if it brings forward a few years the enormous economic advantage of self-driving vehicles. Of course, you may need to do your testing in countries where life is cheaper.

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Mike Shepherd
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Happy

DaaS LOL

Just sprayed my monitor with tea.

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Brit chip biz ARM legs it to Softbank for $32bn

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: Once ARM becomes a Japanese company..

You don't need a comparison with the BBC Computer to evaluate ARM's designs. It's enough to examine them on their own merits. When you see the **** that other semiconductor manufacturers wrap round the ARM cores, they look even better.

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Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Expect a few spin-offs

ARM is pure IP, not a bunch of factories, so it's 100% about the skill and enthusiasm of its employees.

So, expect a few spin-offs (outside SoftBank's control) when employees realise they're viewed as the livestock that came with the farm (now run from the other side of the planet) and the atmosphere changes.

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Did mock cop bot trot on fraught tot? Maybe not

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"The machine veered..."

"The machine veered to the left to avoid the child, but the child ran backwards directly into...".

So, a stationary machine "veered" when it saw something approaching? We don't usually speak of "veering" when stationary. Or maybe the machine veered while moving? I'm not clear I'd know what to do if a moving automaton decided to change direction when I was moving with an intention to avoid it, so should we expect a child to know how to negotiate that?

As for running backwards, I don't recall that I was ever able to do that, yet it's invoked as an explanation here.

I assume that the company had an opportunity to lay out a clear explanation, but it seems to have failed.

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IaaS revenue to triple by 2020, to $43.6bn

Mike Shepherd
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US$43.6 billion

When we don't know from one day to the next whether a country will be in the EU or not, a prediction four years ahead, to three significant figures, is about as fatuous as you can get.

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Google broke its own cloud again

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

"But on this occasion..."

Says it all really.

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Unmasking malware in TLS connections? It can be done, say Cisco researchers

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

If...

If it's practicable to infer content from the pattern of data flow, that applies to the "legitimate" communication, too. So secure encryption requires that the flow be rendered less dependent on the content (by padding it with filler data, by adding random short delays between packets or whatever), spoiling this "antimalware" method at the same time.

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Gigabyte BIOS blight fright: Your megabytes’ rewrite plight in the spotlight

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

Re: Not a bug...

energystar : Was it you wrote the manual for my TV?

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Sterling's post-Brexit dollar woes are forcing up tech kit prices

Mike Shepherd
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Meh

I think they mean

...proudly been a part of the British economy and society for over a century, with a substantial presence. In times of uncertainty, IBM's core values, including the unwavering dedication to the success of all our clients, matter more than ever as a guide for our actions.

Well, if this management-speak means anything, I'd guess it means "If customers stop buying, we'll drop our prices".

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