325 posts • joined 26 Apr 2009
VSS! there's a name to tickle the Cthulhu gland!
I well remember the feeling of disoriented terror when I read the MS recommendation that a dev group with our size of team and codebase (10 and 100k SLOC) should run a "fix" pass at least once per week, which in our case required about 18 hours running on the server hosting the drive containing the rats' nest of directories which MS nonchalantly called a database.
Happily enough Wikipedia says "The final version of the product, Visual SourceSafe 2005, retired from mainstream support on 10 July 2012 with extended support ending on 11 July 2017" so very soon it will be nothing more than a developer ghost story
HERE we go again...
Back in the days of scoffing at that "fruity company" Nokia bought Navteq for about $8B. "How ever will you make that money back?" gasped the analysts, and an early answer was free S60 Ovi Maps with paid-license navigation. But after a while, as Google-equipped iPhones and then Androids loomed in the windscreen (the front one...) the license became perpetual and free.
Roll on the WP era, and the low-end devices came with regionally-locked HERE navigation, with a paid upgrade option. And once again this has withered, perhaps in the face of Android (sluggishly) improving off-line support. Just possibly the cost of designing, implementing, translating, testing and supporting this option was even covered by the sales to low-end Lumia globe-trotters.
All of which leaves me wondering how much of a direct asset mapping has been for any of the phone makers, as opposed to its absence being a certain deal-breaker. And did companies such as Nokia fully appreciate this all along and the licenses were more to pacify the shareholders by showing some (small-but-watch-'em-grow!) revenue streams?
That was the Astro Investigation and Defense Service in action
Godzone's very Special forces in fact - there's an old doco about their duties here
Can only hope Google back down in time...
That's really good news about the "new information"
And it should be discussed with the Swedish judiciary at the earliest opportunity, so that this whole mess can finally be cleared up. May I suggest tomorrow's 0730 flight from Heathrow?
(or if that's too risky because the evil Swedish puppets are going to bundle him into a big brown envelope, then there's not much point in trying to talk to them about this news anyway)
It's a command server, not a horror movie monster
If it was a monster then this two week window would make some sense: "We've put it to sleep - quick! run for safety while you can! it will wake up soon!" But it isn't - Cryptolocker doesn't wait for you to try to uninstall it, then try to ask the mothership "the user is coming after me! should I scramble the files now?" The moment it starts executing it does whatever harm it can, so while running an instance now might be safer (presuming it does lie dormant if it can't get a key from the C&C server, rather than generating a local one anyway and mailing it to a collection of backup email addresses), late May was also a very good time to update protective software and July will be an awesome month for running the browser from a low capability browser-only user account, and so on.
OMG! will you just look at the yellow crater to the right of your post!
Of course the so-called "independent experts" [called by who?] will claim its natural, that it's merely twinned uplift peaks offset from the true centre with a collapsed rim to the south catching the low angle light, but if your so BLIND that you cant see THE FACE then may be its rite that the LIZARD PEOPLE WON?
>> beams back pictures of the Red Planet daily, not all are immediately examined.
Nice to know that the richness of digital cameras also afflicts NASA - I too have an ever increasing pile of snaps that I just know I'm going to get around to sorting through Real Soon Now.
(of course NASA has a finite window for capture before the orbiter fails so it makes sense to blaze away ahead of digestion, let alone having the chance to find transient phenomena like this. Whereas when my camera fails [i.e. gets dropped] it'll be replaced the next day by something that lets me be even sillier. The hi-res HUD camera (step-child of "Glass") will be the final tar baby)
Intestine removal: the lazy cure for appendicitus?
Changing your name means updating it formally with many important organizations in your life (the state, banks, employers, insurers, etc) It also means breaking social links with out-of-touch friends (like trying to find old schoolmates who now have married names) And you'd cheerfully do all this to evade one bad link? (and hope that nobody helpfully provides the "HTTP 301" for you, as they often do for married names "Mary Smith (nee Bloggs)", since Google is quite capable of supporting such common patterns too.
Magic of the movies
The first photo of Giger hugging an egg in the alien ship's hold ghasts my flabber something chronic - watching John Hurt amid the eggs I knew that at some point a matt painting took over but I hadn't guessed that the point was "the egg behind him". Nothing like a little fog, some good lighting, a fine director, and of course a fabulous piece of graphic design that meant (like any magic trick) my horrified attention was held firmly where it was meant to be.
So following movie logic...
PC Bookshop will soon sweep Amazon from the face of the Earth, remarking as it does so "Now the circle is complete"
Only in my dreams - I do miss the the smell of paper and fresh ink, and the excitement of finds when pouring through the bookstacks, and I wonder how to explain this lost world to my kids. But the flipside was being at the behest of the shops' (and distributors') best guesses about what to stock and at what levels (perhaps the sole copy of that serendipitous hit just waltzed out the door five minutes ago) - the kids will never understand just how ignorant we were of just how ignorant we were...
Existing patents operate much like mines (the bang-where-did-my-legs-go sort, not the useful mineral extraction sort). Chopped into separate claims they'll be cluster bombs.
Re: It was the best DOS word processor
A neighbouring lawyer was still using WP for DOS in 2000 (and may still be for all I know) - at the time she said she could hammer out menacing letters and entwining contracts larded with boilerplate paragraphs far faster than with the "upgrade" of the Windows version (better macros, snappier responses, and of course a big dose of muscle memory)
Re: Traditional HR Problems
Having sharpened his lobbying skills in the intervening decade, not the least in the successful passage of the 34th Constitutional Amendment that allowed President Schwarzenegger his scandal-dogged single term of office, on Feb 9, 2025 President Elop abruptly exited his honeymoon period with his startling "Burning Continent" speech...
...after which we'll all be waiting to see what the bonus for sailing a superpower into the rocks is, who the lucky purchaser is, and whether they have the sense to follow Don Jefe's sage (if somewhat Game of Thronesque) on the safe disposal of weapons of cash destruction
> At least you didn't shoot down living objects (life forms). Pretty harmless.
The widows of countless UFO pilots beg to differ, you callous murdering speciesist!
The Spy Who Came in from the Cold?
Perhaps Mr Durov is an Alec Leamas character - formerly on the inside, now publicly thrown out to establish his bona fides. Or perhaps he's a good egg ridden down roughshod, and now to spend the rest of his days waving a Geiger counter over his cup of tea (at least when dining with old chums from the motherland).
And to think that back in the 90s we thought we'd miss the Cold War...
For a big outfit Akamai is doing better than feared
How often do we get to see a corp boast in public, get called out on it and then promptly eat that humble pie, discuss their mistake in reasonable technical detail, and set about digging its customers out of the mess? A couple of years back I'd have expected a promptly hurled spurious law suit (DCMA protection device violation, libel, damaging customer confidence, disclosure of trade secrets, freelance subversion...)
Maybe it's the influence of Pwn to Own (etc), or maybe they're both symptoms of an overall change, but it feels like our industry is growing up just a bit.
Re: Er, why?
It's not obvious that they knew of this specific bug - developers were already concerned that OpenSSL's own "secret malloc sauce" was dangerous. Here's OpenSSH's Theo de Raadt gently remonstrating...
But yes, building OpenSSL with heartbeats disabled would have been good - unless of course they tried and found that this conflicted with some other config macro they needed, since most of the combinations weren't being built, let alone tested. Such a minority interest item shouldn't have been enabled by default anyway, especially in a security layer.
Once the landing-in-a-shower-of-sparks-and-smoke is working
I hope NASA commissions new launch modes for Falcon rockets: swimming-pool-slide-away and palm-tree-lie-down..
(and now I'll spend the rest of the day with the Thunderbirds music as an earworm. Come on, join in, dum---dah-dah-dum, dah-dah-dah-dum-dah-duum...)
And pray that nobody used a web admin interface
...or that if they did then their SSH password isn't the same, or that if they aren't 100% sure that this has always been true for the past two years then rebuild the server at the same time as changing certificates. Otherwise the paranoid fear remains that someone has quietly owned the server and no longer needs the old passwords, private key, or this vulnerability.
Re: I want...
...and when citizens ask you how you came to be, you just can't refrainium from 'xplainium
Re: Changed flight path?
Mass of the lander: 27kg
Mass of the comet: 3,140,000,000,000kg
No worries :-) - the normal out-gassing of the comet will be transferring a lot more momentum than the landing
@Kurt - glad that FreeScale are on the more enlightened side. Maybe that's even becoming the true "best practice"? - of the seven redundancies I've been involved with there seems growing awareness that it's all too easy to make the remaining staff demotivated and cynical, and in fact to induce a form of grief.
Nothing like of course the grieving of those directly affected by this loss, or the ripples spreading out through people more connected than me. But that's the (all-too-)human nature to govern our joy and sorrow by our kinship that John Donne so perfectly cautioned against:
No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manor of thine own
Or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.
Good to see life imitating art [*]
...now keenly awaiting the news that the orbiting twin has succumbed to SPACE MADNESS PLAGUE and OVERSIZED DARK CONTACT LENSES and seizes control of Putin's well-known Secret Laser, so (in a Shocking Twist of Fate) the grounded twin Goes Over His Commander's Head to fly to the ISS (he'll break into the "USS Intrepid" and steal the "Enterprise" to do this) because He Is The Only Man Who Can Stop His Twin. And (in a SToF) he must decide to whether to Chance Everything to Give Nadia More Time to Find a Cure. Nadia? Oh, she's the Chinese part of the Love Triangle (a Russian in the first draft but the test audience surveys from Shanghai were really bad)
[*] so crappy lazily-plotted thrillers using the wonders of science for meretricious decoration don't count as art? You patronising elitist snob!
Does a little piece of a PR flack die every time they write this rubbish?
"Improve the user experience" - yes, the only thing wrong with my day is that I haven't had to log on enough times yet...
I do understand their motivation, I do accept their need to pursue revenue, I do know that I'm the product not the customer, et-sodding-cetera. But please stop varnishing the turd (or find a varnish that hides the smell better).
Star gazing ain't what it used to be...
...it's unbelievably better! When I were a lad it was taken as gospel that (optically) the stars amounted to zero dimensional point sources - with a nice big 'scope you could collect more photons and so do some spectroscopy but you would never resolve anything like a disc. Let alone see planets orbiting that disc. Let alone be talking of doing spectroscopy of the atmosphere of those planets. Bloody (marvelous) witchcraft, this.
Lovely image, "flight of geese" - cheers!
I shall go "hoooonk! hooooonk" at the next one I set free :-)
But some bright soul suggested that it's less likely to have been copypasta than somebody not vetting an automatic three-way merge. Perforce used to get it mostly right, tempting me to just submit, go home, and see what if the test results looked good in the morning - but once-in-a-while it would get confused by adjacent changes in the mergees and end up with a partial duplicate like this.
I'm more worried that "unreachable code" is routinely disabled - it's a PITA to have to "#ifdef _DEBUG" or "(void) someParamThatOnlyGotUsedForLogging;" but there aren't many warnings that don't save your butt someday like this.
At least some of the woes are above OS level
The Consumer Reports description: "poorly designed," "maddeningly fussy," "time consuming and cumbersome," and "distracting to use while you're driving." - that all smells like UI & apps, i.e. exactly where Ford is bringing their special expertise to bear. Rehousing the same atop a better OS core won't achieve much so have to hope they have the wit to do some real UI design too.
And for all that's holy, drop the animations and distracting eye-candy: buttons and touch areas need to be big, plain, and predictable, and stay unobtrusive unless they have something important to communicate (and that's "important for the driver", not "important for my team's bonus that we better highlight Twitter connectivity status"). Among the reasons VW gets repeat sales is that you know that the major controls in the next model (or even in different product lines) will look the same, work the same, and be in the same damn place.
> It's well known that Nokia was practically printing money when Elop joined...
According to Tomi Ahonen's highly partisan writings they were at least profitable, with only a single quarter of loss (from the NSN division) and growing smartphone unit sales (not of course at Jobsian margins). The unit sales graph is saddening:
Tomi gets very repetitive (and I'm in awe at his typing speed; rants on a keyboard faster than I do at a bar) but the picture he draws of Elop's time and especially of that astonishing $25M bonus for failure is boggleworthy (less ranty take here: http://www.forbes.com/sites/terokuittinen/2013/09/24/nokia-admits-giving-misleading-information-about-elops-compensation/
And yes, S60 was in trouble - long in dire need of a UI czar with real arse-kicking powers, too much consensus of the "oh gosh let's do both" sort achieved by senior managers unable to control [or understand] their subordinates, too many layers of shims and frameworks soaking up the performance advantage of the Symbian core beneath (and that performance increasingly less relevant in an era of big batteries and frequent recharging)... but had all the crap of competing Qt visions ("Orbit" - nobody could even explain to me how that made sense, let alone how it could work) been quickly stomped and Joy of QML world pursued with vigour then (just maybe) they'd have phoenixed (beyond the dying bird and blazing fire part - that bit happened for sure)
> proves Assange is right to be always looking for who would metaphorically stab him in the back
If you read the LRB piece (long but fascinating) his method of "looking" is more akin to a spouse destroying a marriage by repeated allegation of betrayal: "Admit it! You don't love me any more! You looked at someone else! Stop lying! ... SEE I WAS RIGHT NOT TO TRUST YOU!"
The thing with friendship is that it's a two-way street, and I don't remember reading any effusive thanks (let alone a functional apology) from Assange when his bail guarantors lost substantial amounts of money due to his hiding in the embassy. Rather, he fell out with at least two of them (Khan and his former host, Vaughan Smith):
Julian’s late-night online campaign had the usual effect of turning a bad patch into a vipers’ nest. He never really apologised to anyone, but got busy turning his publishers into the latest enemy, to go alongside Domscheit-Berg, Mark Stephens, the Guardian, the New York Times, my researcher, his former host at Ellingham Hall, the government of Australia, his activist friends in Iceland, and a host of others who’d dared to have their own views. There would be many more to come: Jemima Khan, the Big Issue, Barack Obama and Assange’s own political party in Australia. I only stayed on good terms with him as long as I did because I kept quiet.
Christ had twelve disciples and remained on good terms with eleven of them right to the end; this Messiah of our day seems bedeviled by Judases yet somehow rather less effectively crucified.
What a thoughtful Valentine's pressie for a child of the 80s!
Splendidly written & genuinely informative - it's this sort of relevant-but-left-field article that keeps me reading El Reg! I now have a burning urge to go torrent/tube it as there is bugger-all chance it will ever get shown here (music rights alone would scotch that)
(not so much the reheated press releases devoid of any real critique - but obviously a piece like this takes a lot more time and effort so mustn't be [too] greedy)
Re: Oh dear, 3D selfies...
And once round-tripped through the office 3D printer, a charming memento of the office party for every colleague's desk - a little model your arse (congealed from the purest green, my lord!). Perhaps they'll use the cleft as a business card archive.
Re: "one day!"
Maybe she means it in the colloquial sense of "some day" ? That actually makes sense: some day we'll really know how to train people in teaching (rather than much of it being down to synchronicity, good luck, and intangible brain kinks - actually rather like the algorithm for developing great software engineers...)
@Sir Runcible Spoon - crobots?
It fits your description neatly - I spent many happy lunchtimes battling co-workers. Here's the original:
The biggest flaw was that in effect it simulated a x86 without a x87 maths coprocessor - floating point ops took too many cycles to be useful. So my proudest creation (carefully probing with the radar, narrowing the beam focus to estimate the enemy's vector then applying elementary calculus to choose the aiming point) was trounced by my boss's "psychorabbit" (it didn't use the radar AT ALL, just moved in random spurts while firing blindly as fast as possible)
Luckily I'm not bitter. At all. After all, it's over 20 years ago now. Well maybe just a little bitter...
Even more luckily, there's a shiny NG version here: http://crobots.deepthought.it/home.php
> Lots of us Brits remember last time we tried appeasement on a large scale
To be an utter pedant, it's only the 80+ year-olds that remember it in the strong sense of recalling an experience within one's timeframe, but certainly many bear the example in mind.
But the lesson perhaps runs a little deeper - the thing with 1938 is that Chamberlain had no useful military option, so it wasn't so much an overall policy of appeasement as making a virtue of necessity (and necessity existed on the German side too - they were well aware that their military lead would erode with the progressive re-armament of Allied Nations so if the gamble was ever to be taken it was the right moment for it). So far we don't seem to have devised a better answer than the combination of maintaining a credible deterrence with engagement - si vis pacem, para bellum coupled to "if goods don't cross borders then soldiers will". And in that respect North Korea is a tougher and more isolated nut than Nazi Germany.
@Matt 21 "no-one can stop me as long as I don't [...] use copyrighted material without permission"
Possibly that's true, possibly even a well-funded lawyer might acknowledge the point, but since that copyright material includes aspects of look and feel, graphic designs, names, etc this movie was surely infringing. Even before they "borrowed" the company logos to make it look approved...
A sad case in point - the splendid 2004 book "Tarzan Presley" (being a fusion of the Tarzan story and the Elvis legend used to examine the Kiwi mythos - and a bloody good read) was sued to oblivion by the estate of Edgar Rice Burroughs, since he invented the character in 1912. It got reissued as "Jungle Rock Blues" with Caliban Presley as the protagonist - luckily so far the estate of William Shakespeare has stayed their hand... (glass half-full: it seems the Presley Estate can accept that the cultural significance of Elvis makes reference both inevitable and not inappropriate)
Roll up! Roll up! Step this way...
...and see your box ravaged just the same. Of the 2.5 successes that "Pinkie Pie" has had at previous Pwnium contests, at least 1.5 look as if they would have worked against your sort of config (and just possibly the other one would too - although you're blocking plugins & scripting code it was exploiting a defect in the controlling when native client code was allowed to run, so maybe it would bypass NoScript too).
It's worth a coffee-break to go through the details of the attacks - they're scary-good:
> Is the deep reason of FAIL the northern "third way" semi-socialistic model?
That's like one of those teaser questions on the cover of a tabloid magazine at the checkout - "IS BIN LADEN STILL ALIVE???". And the answer in both cases is "uh-uh, nopety-nope".
Nokia's internals were hardly socialistic - they went through all sorts of contortions to generate internal competition. The problem was that these were mostly crap and prone to backfiring, such as the notorious phase of dividing the smartphone market into three types (something like business, media, and messaging) and decreeing what features fell into each type. So business gets the fast CPU and media gets the autofocus camera, thus the next business phone boasted a barcode reader app but could only resolve enormous barcodes painted on the side of a barn and the media phone struggled with playback and games. Truly shades of "Life of Brian":
("Campaign for Free Gallilee" and "People's Front of Judea" start fighting)
BRIAN: Brothers! Brothers! We should be struggling together!
FRANCIS: We are! Ohh.
BRIAN: We mustn't fight each other! Surely we should be united against the common enemy!
EVERYONE: The Judean People's Front?!
BRIAN: No, no! The Romans!
(and nevermind the delusion that the customers will neatly segment - business folk never play games or take photos, etc. Or perhaps they'll buy (and lug around) two separate phones, and spend those lonely hotel nights resyncing the contacts dbs with each other and relishing the opportunity to try out all the local swear words)
This craziness wasn't a socialist planned economy - I think in part it was to try to avoid the innovator's dilemma by having radical competition arising internally before some Visigoths could bring it crashing through the front door. But done in this Laurel & Hardy way all it did was provoke lots of siloing.
Re: Capitalism: One should try it from time to time
The oracle has spoken: "the point of a free and competitive market is to give me a fair crack at achieving a powerful enough position that it would be better for that competition to cease forever. Better for whom, you ask? Well everything is connected, send not to know for whom the bell tolls old chap, I think it's safe to conclude that if I eat a whole suckling pig and then let rip an enormous fart then I've created a richer atmosphere for us both."
> Developers might also want to consider any offers for their code
Or at least hold out for one of those six-figures-per-month offers. If true (13 cents per user per month so not inconceivable if the purchaser plans to monopolise them for advertising) and actually paid then that's surely going to turn the hearts and morals of many a developer. Money on the "organised crime" scale has long been an effective moral solvent.
Someday soon my kids will be rolling their eyes at my well-worn rant about "I remember when the point of malware was printing "GIMME COOKIE"
NZ fiscal whizzkids once explored the bounds of non-progressive tax
About twenty years ago the Treasury Dept (always on the astringent side of dry) carefully balanced part of the budget by cutting low-income benefits by X megabucks. Come the end of that fiscal year they were gobsmacked to find that the tax take fell by a hearty fraction of X megabucks - because of course the orchestrated litany of dole bludgers, solo mums getting up the duff deliberately, and other such bogeymen always spent almost all of their money within the local economy, so getting significantly recycled by the GST (consumption) tax and income taxes of the local shopkeepers.
(this isn't buying into the fight of how/if social welfare should be delivered or whether globalcorps are a nett good. I just found it bleakly funny that the whizzkids claimed to have the pulse of the country but hadn't completed this join-the-dot picture)
> Each topic is accompanied by a headline that briefly explains why it is trending
It was a quick feature to implement:
cout << "Because too many twats clicked 'Like'";
(but got held up in translation after Texans objected to the use of "fanny")
> Most of our problems are over a long period of time
Of course they are - no sensible parasite ever bleeds the host out all at once.
> If the docking port bell rings
Or as the Finnish Culture Office once expressed it:
Something's knocking at my Sputnik's door
A little green man who wants to score
I know what a "con" is...
...but what is a "fide"?
Re: How many Directors
I once saw a man bite his own head off! In broad daylight too, leaving no trace of physical violence.
That seems like a whole lot of trouble! Take a tip from the experts: strip him, lock him inside a sports bag, pop it in the bath (less cleanup for the girlfriend - every little helps!), and you're home in time for the accidental death verdict.
Never mind all this! - are the kids alright!?
That far away from the in-laws...
...and they still have to resort to a spot of DIY before Boxing Day!
I look forward to auto-play ads getting on my tits faster than ever before!
- Updated HIDDEN packet sniffer spy tech in MILLIONS of iPhones, iPads – expert
- RISE of the Jesus Phone MOUNTAIN: 80 MILLION 'Air' iPhone 6s ordered
- Students hack Tesla Model S, make all its doors pop open IN MOTION
- BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
- PROOF the Apple iPhone 6 rumor mill hype-gasm has reached its logical conclusion