217 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009
Re: I believe that a well-implemented cybercurrency would be a good thing...
The weak point of Bitcoin is how people convert into/out of proper currencies. So a 'run' in this context is lots of people wanting to sell Bitcoin while few people are prepared to stump up dollars for them. If the exchanges run out of liquidity, the whole thing grinds to a halt.
Re: And yet...
The people who are really laughing all the way to the (real) bank are the US authorities that sold all their bitcoins with the market near its peak.
Just because some gullible people see a dip in the price as a chance to jump into the market having maybe missed out on the first bubble means nada. - other than providing more opportunities for the sharks. Come back here in six months and see what the price is then.
Love this take on it
Entertaining writeup of the whole fiasco from a bitcoinista here:
It's not like this came out of the blue
Mt.Gox has been a weak link in the whole Bitcoin setup for a long time, you only need to look back through the Register's archive, e.g:
and a perceptive analysis of that incident on another blog
made it clear that Mt.Gox was just an accident waiting to happen. Tulip anyone?
a) it takes care of most of the cross-browser compatibility problems
b) It's well documented and relatively bug free.
Sure I could write my own framework, but why should I re-invent the wheel?
It's quite a few years since I looked at it, but when I did it was more 'spreadsheet wars' than anything else. Screens and screens full of numbers supposedly simulating space trading and combat. Obviously appeals to some, but I found it deadly dull.
Debian systems ok
Just checked my servers and it seems the default config provided for ntpd by Debian is already safe as it includes the lines:
restrict -4 default kod notrap nomodify nopeer noquery
restrict -6 default kod notrap nomodify nopeer noquery
where the advisory advises adding 'noquery' to prevent the attack
The beginning of the end
Large sale drives down price... panics speculators... rest is history
"It's also not the case that you can't easily chop Windows down to next to nothing."
You could have a nice sideline in writing a guide as to how to do this, since it's not something that any official documentation provides.
Seized top level domains?
What you mean like .uk, .com and .gov?
"He's not the Messiah, he's a very naughty boy!"
Yep, geolocking is stupid, it's also trivial (if a little cumbersome) to bypass by using proxies. It's time the media companies realised that the internet is worldwide and their rights should be too.
They should join forces with...
... the ipv6 folks. They can't organise a switchover either.
For this to work...
doesn't it mean that Google has to be listening continuously to everything you say, otherwise how would it know when you say the magic words?
I have a 3D-TV. I only bought it because the retailer was flogging them off cheap because hardly anyone wants 3D.
The stereoscopic glasses are still in their wrapping.
Re: Never going to work
Except that that's not how "proper" currencies (something that can be used as an everyday means of exchange) work. Internal market prices/wages should NOT change in response to the external exchange rate (or at least only slowly, over time).
If you're saying that 1000 dollar exchanged into Bitcoin can always buy me 1000 dollars worth of goods, (ignoring the supposed anonimity advantages) I may as well just use the dollars in the first place and avoid the exchange costs.
Bitcoin is just a speculation investment and at the moment has all the appearance of a south-sea bubble one at that.
Never going to work
It's an interesting technical exercise but Bitcoin itself is never going to work for the masses.
The supply of new coins decreases with time, which is exactly the opposite of what you want for a stable and useful currency if you want to grow the user base, since (bubbles and crashes aside) it becomes more and more expensive for new people to start using it. But it's made the early adopters rich.
I have approximately 0.05 of a Bitcoin myself (acquired via an experiment with mining, before the kit needed became prohibitively expensive) worth at today's exchange rate around £25.
Autorun strikes again
Autorun is a stupid, stupid feature of Windows, that should never have made it into release. Whoever first thought of it must have been braindead.
Anyone interested in RISC OS should look at http://www.redsquirrel.fsnet.co.uk/redsquirrel.html a native RISCOS emulator for x86/Windows. Still have a copy of my final RISC OS machine running under it - and the nice thing is that with modern hardware it actually runs faster in the emulator than it ever did on the real hardware :)
Re: There's science and then there's wild guesswork
Actually I do know quite a bit about the subject since it's a related area to my own area of expertise.
These conclusions (indeed one could argue almost the whole of distant object astronomical science) are based on theories which cannot be proven without spacecraft being able to travel vast distances. Given that the furthest any of our craft have got so far is only just beyond our own solar system (Voyager), one erroneous assumption brings the whole theoretical house-of-cards tumbling down.
For instance a lot of what is surmised about objects in space is based on the principle of Doppler blueshift where the frequency of observed light changes as a result of the movement of a source toward the observer. We know that this is how light behaves over short distances since we can prove it under laboratory conditions. However how can we be sure that once those distances are scaled up to light-years there isn't some other factor that comes into play? Or other unknown and undetected phenomena out there in space have an effect? There is just no way we can test for it with our current level of technology. And if that theory no longer holds true then much of what is surmised about distant space is wrong. I'm not saying that particular theory is wrong, but that's just one example.
There's science and then there's wild guesswork
I love how these astrophysicists can give us the size, mass, composition and relative position of a very distant object based on a tiny, tiny scrap of electromagnetic data.
If they are baffled as to how such a planet could be where it is, the obvious answer is that their conclusions about the data are wrong.
What I want to know is...
why haven't the folks in Under The Dome figured out that they could use something like this to talk to the outside world yet?
Accumulating an $8.5bn fortune via capitalist enterprise and being genuinely left-wing are not two characteristics that often go hand-in-hand.
Gobbled up all their capital?
Forgive me if I'm being naive, but isn't a core principle of high-risk investments that you make a lot of them for a small proportion of your capital each, thus, er... spreading the, erm... risk?
For the paranoid, there are Android apps that provide this sort of functionality (and much, much more ) already - for instance see http://www.androidlost.com
Now that is for you to track your phone when it's been stolen or lost, but it's no big stretch to see an emergency services equivalent.
Genius until the first incident where a Delta aircraft gets into trouble because their Microsoft tablet locks up at just the wrong moment...
Profane - Think I've Outstayed My Welcome
PC version is on its way
Some clever bods have already identified config files intended for the PC released with the console versions, so there can be little doubt that the PC version is coming, it's just a question of when (my money is on late Nov/ early Dec in time for Chrismas sales).
I suspect the console versions are released first these days as people with both a PC and a console would probably get the PC version as it will have better graphics. By holding back that release, they probably push up console sales and may even get some double sales to people who have both.
"What kind of dumb-ass names ultra-secretive operations with names that are anything to do with their subject matter?"
Probably the same sort of dumbass that thought this operation was a good idea in the first place.
All I want to know is...
"are you seeking entry to engage in criminal or immoral activities?"
What's the point?
How does spending god-knows-how-many millions on rebranding and splitting systems to create a separate bank actually help anyone at all? Surely all it does is drive up costs, costs which inevitably get passed on to the customers.
And no doubt in a few years time, when the newly independent TSB is struggling, it will get swallowed up again by one of the giant institutions.
Not missing much?
Given Microsoft's recent record of f**king up patches - perhaps it doesn't really matter if support is ending?
Re: "3D films are increasingly becoming the standard"
and the BBC has indefinitely suspended any 3D broadcasts meanwhile 3D-TVs are stockpiled in the warehouses.
Yep... some standard.
isn't it just easier to ask the NSA or GCHQ for copies of all the target's emails?
Shouldn't they be doing something more productive with their time like getting drunk or watching Countdown?
Not only Surface RT
The exact same analysis could be applied to Windows 8.
Microsoft has never been particularly good technically, the one thing they used to be brilliant at was marketing. Now it seems that even that skill is deserting them.
Such a sorry end
Opera have quite literally thrown away their USP for the desktop browser. Who's going to be interested in a Chrome clone when you can just run Chrome?
I had no problem with the idea of them using the Webkit rendering engine when they announced that change, but then to dump everything that made their browser stand out????
So now their sales pitch is what? Try us... we're just like Chrome only with more bugs?
Can someone explain...
the logic between the 802.11 suffixes? we've had a/b/g/n and now ac? To the layman they provide no clue as to which one is better/faster and ever since we got past 'b' seem to have been plucked out of thin (but heavily irradiated!) air...
Does it do widgets?
Does it do widgets? This to me is the biggest difference between Android and IOS. Redesigned icons are neither here nor there.
I have an Android phone (HTC Desire S) and an iPad2 . I find Android much more useful for 'at a glance' info since I'm able to configure the home screens to show me stuff I want to know regularly in the form of widgets.
"a web-based mobile future isn't just appealing, it feels inevitable"
The kiss-of-death statement, the article's author should think about going into football commentary.
For all the hype, this is just another application manager on top of a linux kernel.
Will they never learn?
When will politicians finally get it into their heads that you can't legislate against an idea?
You can't stop people thinking 'bad' thoughts and disseminating them to others, it's a losing battle. You have to listen, understand and then refute their arguments, together with understanding the root causes that lead to the promotion of these philosophies in the first place.
The attitude of May and her ilk is akin to trying to cure a cold by banning someone from sneezing.
Re: IT angle?
Totally agree with Terry 6.
It's one thing to have a bit of fun with the headline but to mislead your readership for several paragraphs is disingenuous at best and downright dangerous at worst. For someone that only skim read the start of the story they might genuinely believe that Ohio is looking to shut down all internet cafes.
Additionally search engines will pick up the headline and opening and almost certainly this article will now get misquoted by other people as 'proof' of the facility.
Dear Register, if you want to be the tech equivalent of The Onion, then carry on but add something to your masthead along the lines of "don't believe anything you read here". Otherwise, grow up and make fun of genuinely silly government policy (it's not like there's a shortage) instead of rolling your own.
Re: "The Daily Telegraph introduced a subscription last month, with the first 20 articles free"
The technical incompetence of the Telegraph's setup is staggering.
drm is ultimately pointless
You know what, anyone that wants a copy of drm'd content can ultimately just stick a microphone in front of their speakers or a video camera in front of their monitor (if even digital capture of the final output is not possible) Sure there will be a slight loss of quality, but for the pirates that distribute stuff, that doesn't matter.
The sooner the copyright owning corporations wake up to the fact that the best way to prevent theft is simply to distribute content at a fair price, the better. Most people prefer to be honest unless they feel they are being ripped off.
Agree,. and futher actually provides the company with FREE advertising since media outlets (like The Register...) write up the story.
Re: As vague as the last post on this subject....
Totally agree with the criticism of the article, very poor. The Register could do us all a service by rewriting it to explain things properly.
@sp I'm not convinced that it would actually have much commercial impact to have a human review all declined payments and indeed may have a positive effect on the bottom line if you end up with improved customer relations and goodwill. Unless there are an enormous number it wouldn't be a fulltime job for even one person.
For example, you have a report onscreen where you can see a list of summary details, the bank's message and the computer system's proposed action. Scan the list for anomalies, examine in further detail any account that stands out and if necessary take out of the automatic system. Probably take an hour or two a day at most. To cut it down even further, you could restrict the accounts reviewed to just those where the bank's message was one that the computer did not have a programmed action for.
@sp why would it be daft to have a human look at the reason for every declined direct debit? Do Virgin have such a high volume of declined payments that they couldn't cope? Is it old-fashioned to have humans actually doing a job?
At the present time, humans are still much better at context than computers.
I'm confused about why people make such as fuss about people knowing your credit card number. The main 16-digit number is something that is effectively in the public domain, since, unless you never use the card, you give it out to all and sundry.
Re: Bioshock Infinite & Steam!
I bought Bioshock Infinite via Steam and have had absolutely no problems.
On my first playthrough (two sessions of about 10 hours each - hard setting - if you are used to fps then hard for the first run is the way to go) I was absolutely blown away. In terms of storytelling and look, it surpasses everything before it and sets the benchmark for gaming for years to come. It reminded me of the feeling I got when I first played Half-Life. I believe Bioshock Infinite will be looked back on in a similar way in years to come.
All that said, its niggles do become apparent on a second playthrough. Ultimately it's very much an interactive movie, since there's little you can do different any run. Also that you still need to search everywhere in order to collect together the silver dollars needed to buy the various combat perks (without some of which you'll be stuck on the final fights) loses much of its fun factor after the first run.
Still that first screening was worth the price of admission as far as I'm concerned, so anything else is a bonus. For instance, the anachronistic (but cleverly worked into the plot) use of more modern music in 1912-era Columbia. The barbershop quartet (the gayest in Columbia!) rendering of The Beach Boys, 'God Only Knows' is both funny and musically quite brilliant. Also worthy of a mention the spiritual 'May the Circle be unbroken' sung by the two voice leads Courtnee Draper (Elizabeth) and Troy Baker (DeWitt), who also plays guitar on it. There's a bonus video of them rehearsing at the end of the credits.
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