* Posts by Charles 9

7467 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Americans to be guinea pigs in vast chip-and-PIN security experiment

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: The reason Americans don't like it..

"Whilst flawed, the chip and pin system does actually provide some level of extra security."

Not really when the hackers are already targeting the BANKS. Crims are smart enough to just look for points necessarily OUTSIDE the security envelope.

0
0

First successful Hyperloop test module hits 100mph in four seconds

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Ummmmm

There's also the matter of their physical dimension (long and oblong) which makes transporting them along an enclosed tube very difficult. Plus cargo transport usually doesn't have a middle ground. If time is important, you normally just fly it. Otherwise, you can be patient which means it's easier just to haul it by freight train which is open-air (so easy to load and unload), well-developed, and already with an existing infrastructure and support system to handle it all: no additional expenditure needed.

1
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

(Nods) Especially in the places where new transport is needed the most: big cities. By default, these places are already considerably built up so it poses a real problem regarding transportation: trying to cram the 13th egg in a carton only made for 12. Plus Americans attitude toward trains is mixed, particularly regarding arbitrary transportation needs (which can only be met with a personal car).

1
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Snake Oil

" They're currently building a bonkers maglev between Tokyo and Nagoya, and eventually Osaka (Kyoto aren't happy at being missed out),"

I strongly suspect the reason for this connection is due to the fact the route connects quite a few of the major airports in Honshu: Haneda, Narita, Nagoya Centrair, and eventually Kansai. Such a route would also likely put Kobe within reach. Kyoto can complain, but they don't have nearly as much pull.

3
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

And regarding intermodal transport, trains have optimized themselves considerably over the last two decades. One of the big changes was the well car which let trains carry two standard transport containers per car (and here's the beauty: with a powerful enough locomotive, you can pull hundreds of these cars; I routinely see freight trains pulling nearly 200 cars at a time, though in my neck of the woods they're mostly ore cars). Combined with improved rail-line communications to track trains and cars and optimization at transfer points, they can easily beat trucks in land transport efficiency under many different scenarios.

1
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Technical Question

I think I get it. The speed of sound IS affected by density (which is why it travels faster in liquid and faster still through a solid), but in a gas this is perfectly counterbalanced by an inverse correlation regarding gas pressure (meaning it slows as the pressure rises). Keeping temperature constant, raising density also raises pressure and the reverse, and the two factors cancel each other out.

Now, under normal circumstances, evacuating a chamber will pull heat out of it, making it colder, so taking temperature into consideration, pulling a partial vacuum would lower the speed of sound, though not by a tremendous amount given we normally hover near 300K anyway and the partial vacuum isn't likely to drop that by more than 10-15% under practical conditions.

2
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Los Angeles to San Francisco route comes in at $6bn

"How much for the land and 'right of way'?"

I believe the plan is to build this over I-5 and other lands already owned by the government, minimizing right-of-way costs.

6
0

Mud sticks: Microsoft, Windows 10 and reputational damage

Charles 9
Silver badge

"Well Charles, how come Apple manage to keep OSX computers up to date and functioning without at the same time pissing off their user base?"

Simple. Apple controls the HARDWARE. That means Apple has known targets. Microsoft doesn't have that option because the PC market matured differently. Part of Microsoft's problem is because of that there are more combinations than days in a decade. There's no way to take every possibility into consideration, yet low-tech users expect perfection every time no matter how unrealistic this is.

"Are you going to stop me from coming back?"

I won't, but Microsoft may demand a toll first. Remember's time's running out on Microsoft's carrot.

"You seem to have a somewhat unhealthy attachment to a particular OS. Try being pragmatic instead, so you might actually see what is wrong with what. Did you even try to get to know the alternatives?"

Actually, I have, firsthand. THEY ALL STANK! Try running Fallout 4, for example. Bethesda has basically sworn off Linux, so it seems Valve's efforts to convince mainstream developers to code for Linux is falling way short. The only alternative is an expensive, underspecced console.

So I'm not a silly fanboy. I'm a cornered rat looking for somewhere to escape or someone to bite.

0
2
Charles 9
Silver badge

"How much hacking should anyone have to do to his OWN system just to make it behave in a reasonable way? Oh, I forgot, it's not my own PC any more. Updates are scheduled for me now. I'm just a dumb luser."

The problem with your last statement is that, 9 times out of 10, that is absolutely true. The average user treats a computer more like a car than a sensitive system that needs TLC. As far as they're concerned, maintenance is something for other people. They just want it to get their work done tootsweet. So things like updates and so on are completely over their heads, but if Microsoft doesn't handhold them, their machines get pwned and they get the blame for it for not taking stupid into consideration. That's the thing you have to realize: you're the exception. Microsoft has no choice but to swim in the Sea of Stupid because that's where most of their potential customer base is going to be, and they're sure as hell not going to just give it up to Apple. Sure, Enterprise customers mean big bucks, but they have leverage and options meaning they can come and go; Microsoft needs something steadier, so here we are. If you want to abandon Microsoft, feel free, but then don't come crawling back because 90% of the software people want to run isn't available elsewhere (games in particular).

0
2

IBM's Internet of Things brainbox foresees 'clean clothes as a service'

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Things get a little silly.

"When all else fails, a nice charcoal grill works fine."

INDOORS?

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

OK, now try doing it on the same budget as the unit that just sets up a couple dials and is done with it.

Ultimately, what may be needed is a law that declares extraneous functions as "unfit for purpose" and force manufacturers into the KISS principle for the sake of safety. Do what you're designed to do and no more than that. If it requires more than a power cord, it's doing too much unless it's an actual network unit like a switch.

2
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Rube Goldberg lives

Which is not an option because of budget constraints and the demand for better AND cheaper no matter what. So what now?

1
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: "they could actually carry out real world testing in the field"

"Whatever happened to focus groups and user testing?"

Inherent bias. The only way to get real-world data on something is to actually use the damn thing in the real world under real-world conditions, which includes not being forced to log every niggling little detail (the very act of logging introduces bias).

I'm reminded of a part from Thief of Time in which Lu Tze points out that practicing for an emergency is never enough because one thing's always missing: an actual emergency.

8
1

Switch survives three hours of beer spray, fails after twelve

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Football clubs

Sure, you can WRITE it, but good luck getting them to SIGN it. It all depends on who has more leverage: who needs whom more? As for the server room, not everything has to be there. Access points, for example, need to be centrally located to cover maximum area. And clubs can have some clever people in their ranks, so they may contrive ways to maximize their leverage.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Football clubs

"These days if you're going to do a seizure order on equipment I'd start with the comms kit (offsite routers and network switches) before moving to the petty stuff such like cash registers. Point of sale terminals don't work very well if they can't connect to the server and you don't have to expose yourself to bar customers who might become hostile when they work out your presence means they can't be sold any more booze."

How long before someone savvy makes it physically impossible to remove the comms equipment without removing the POS equipment first AND makes sure to place key equipment on the sales floor so that any attempt to seize the stuff means you're in plain sight and risk a riot?

0
0

Google blocks Pirate Bay

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: One must remember,

But those higher-priced spots can mean more lucrative rewards since they're the ones that go to popular mainstream sites, meaning a big drive-by opportunity. Well-heeled criminal networks may find the price worth it given the stakes.

As for curation, the system's like modern stock trading: too fast for a human to curate. Speed sells in this case.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: One must remember,

Even ones with internal ads?

PS, I'm not just talking about any old ads, I'm talking the ones where you click anywhere on the site, and it uses the click to allow those huge popup ads. Those are the more likely to have malware in them. Plus consider which ad networks the different sites are using. I doubt Fortune would enlist an ad network that sells ads for dodgy sexual promiscuity products and so on.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

This may be a bona fide block in this case. Increasingly, TPB and its mirrors have been plagued with third-party ads, including ones potentially of a hijackable variety.

1
0

The Lonely Pirate MEP's Holocaust copyright stunt backfires

Charles 9
Silver badge

Put it this way. A concept of "no ownership" is indefensible because anything that ISN'T owned WILL be owned eventually: by force if necessary.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Because it's a TRUE dichotomy in our way of thinking. If it's not owned by someONE or someTHING, it WILL have an owner soon. It's in fact ownership that allows for protection of property by various laws.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Pot, kettle...

I think the ever-lengthening terms are just a symptom of a greater, probably intractable problem: the problem being no individual right or protection is really safe against a bully strong enough to either smother you (you bring a gun,they bring Uzis) or change the rules (you sue, they bribe the judges and buy the elections). Screw the laws, I have enough power to change or ignore them. What now?

0
0

You can always rely on the Ancient Ones to cock things up

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: If you smell smoke...

That's why you never use a Class A (water-based) fire extinguisher on a fat fire: because oil (fat) and water don't mix, so the water has no effect on the fat and in fact can allow it to spread. Theoretically, adding a surfactant like soap will allow the water to interact with the fat, but the surfactant could itself be flammable or otherwise bad news in a fire. You have to smother a fat fire to get it out safely, which is why you either put a lid on it (asphyxiating it) or use Class B (foam) or Class C (chamical) extinguishers.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Portals to the Gods

No, what would really happen is that all four of your tires would blow out at once and the portal in question would catch flame. Brakegod will snigger again and coyly say, "Feel free to TRY."

That's the thing about Gods. They tend to hold the trump cards.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Music

Most TV shows only provide 30 seconds for an open, so no it usually isn't worth it, though some shows manage to come up with catchy stuff even with the tight time limit.

0
0

All hail Ikabai-Sital! Destroyer of worlds and mender of toilets

Charles 9
Silver badge

"Or WD40, for the same reason (it's fish oil)"

Really? So someone has taken a chemical analyzer to WD40, broken it down into its constituent oils (of which I believe there are six) and managed to identify them one by one and found fish oil to be one of them? I'd love to read the article that describes this in detail.

0
0

Apple needs silver bullet to slay App Store's escaped undead – study

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Take responsibility

"Let me guess... the majority of the people who expect Apple/Google to maintain their applications are the same ones who backed Apple against the FBI. Being ignorant and lazy is no way to get through life!"

For some, it's the ONLY way to go through life. Any other way is a one-way ticket to insanity or murderous rampage, with potential consequences for you and everyone else since no one lives in complete isolation.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Once again, "complicated" seems to be the order of the day

It also raises the risk of "verification fatigue" (like click fatigue).

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: @Charles 9 (again)

But what about the apps already in there? Couldn't they be hijacked by a malicious update?

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: @Charles 9

Nope. They could have an iPhone and not realize it's Internet-connected. People can buy an iPhone because everyone else has one, but what do they use it for? To make phone calls, maybe do texts, PERIOD. And yes, I see these kinds of people every day of my life (usually the older generation), so I know they're out there. These are the kinds of innocents I talk about: those who get devices not knowing any better and not in a position to learn. To do as you say is to go all Darwin on them, which like I said isn't considered very civilized behavior.

2
1
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Should be a cardinal rule...

"What of them indeed.

A revolutionary concept I know.. But how about..

They do the right thing, or.. They face the consequences.

Actions have consequences.

So do inactions."

The thing with INaction, though, is that sometimes inaction is because they lack the knowledge to make a proper judgment. You could essentially be condemning people for something that is truly no fault of their own other than ignorance. That's frankly a very cold and uncivilized view of the world that's destined to doom innocents.

3
1
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Should be a cardinal rule...

"I would - better that they learn something from their mistakes than live in ignorance. Hell never mind their mistakes, better just that they learn something."

And if they're not in a position to learn?

1
1
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Should be a cardinal rule...

"I am so sick of OS and device vendors thinking they know best. Let me make my own decisions and go to Hell in my own way."

And what of the myriad who outnumber you and don't know better? Would you condemn them to join you in your handbasket?

2
1

Daisy-chained research spells malware worm hell for power plants and other utilities

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: The feasibility of a PLC worm

What about a saboteur from within? Remember, STATE-level actors, few things off the table.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: The feasibility of a PLC worm

So what happens when your critical live system has an in-the-wild exploit and therefore MUST be updated (due to say legal compliance) yet you're told that you CAN'T update it because it cannot be shut down under any circumstances? Now you're caught between Scylla and Charybdis because you're going to be in trouble either way: either you lose compliant because your system's unsafe and prone to sabotage or you break your uptime requirement.

0
0

Intel loses its ARM wrestling match, kicks out Atom mobe chips

Charles 9
Silver badge

How does that help Microsoft when the normal routine for this kind of world is "buy once, run anywhere," meaning any Android app I buy I can re-download to another Android device and it'll work no problem?

0
0

US anti-encryption law is so 'braindead' it will outlaw file compression

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Maths v the Law

"That's why we need a new system, the old one has broken (assuming it was ever not-broken)."

Only one problem. EVERY OTHER SYSTEM out there's just as bad if not worse when it comes to controlling the instinctive human potential for corruption. As long as a human's involved, ANY system can be corrupted. We can't even turn it over to machines because at some point along the way, a human has to make the machine.

Put another way, how can you possibly build a rock-solid foundation on which to build the world when all you have to work with is sand (as in not even water, just sand)?

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Moron politicians

And yet no one's been able to come up with a workable alternative to a bunch of corrupt representatives. Direct voting invites herding of stupid votes, and a minimum educational standard invites corrupting the standard to block voters.

0
0

Hold on a sec. When did HDDs get SSD-style workload rate limits?

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: S.M.A.R.T. provides this data, you had to know they'd use it

You should see a modern digital filming session which not only uses at least 6K resolutions with high color gamut but also sometimes film above 48fps AND have to minimize the compression due to the need to minimize generation artifacts during digital editing (if they're allowed to use any at all). So you have the need for high throughput, high capacity, AND high churn all at the same time. From what I hear, the need for high everything basically restricts them to very expensive,very specialized equipment, and forget about transmitting this stuff over even dedicated fiber. Most of the time, a courier with a hard drive is both cheaper and faster for transport during the production stage.

1
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Surely an array of redundant flash chips?

You forget that removeable media tends to get the LOWEST quality of Flash chips. They get the leftovers which means they're the lowest in reliability and only intended for occasional use. Odds are greater you'll get multiple concurrent card failure (so you're more likely to lose data). Furthermore, the point about controller failure is that only the controller knows how the chips are arranged, so when it goes, it's a lot like losing your big password: no one else knows how to reconstruct the data. That's why you can't just swap a controller chip or the like when an SSD fails.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: How are the drives being used?

"Instead of asking ourselves why we've got all this stuff we're just demanding bigger houses to put it in."

Why do we have all this stuff? Because just when you need it the most, the original source up and vanishes without a trace. Many of us have run afoul of this firsthand, so the mindset is "better safe than sorry" and "get it before it's gone." You can always get more storage (if it isn't stacks of hard drives now, it's books of CDs or boxes of floppy discs then). It's a lot harder to resurrect a site that doesn't exist anymore.

6
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: We need more reliable, not just larger.

Found the article that is the source of that image.

That's an IBM 3390. $250,000 that thing cost. In 1989 dollars. Yup, the thing is a quarter century old and held somewhere up to around 22GB, which doesn't seem much until you realize at the time, 200MB hard drives were just coming on the PC market and were no small change, either. So it kind of solidifies my point, as it's very old and very expensive.

2
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: We need more reliable, not just larger.

No, there's a limit there, too, as more platters will strain the spindle and the motor. Old drives in the past spun slower, reducing the forces but also lowering the performance. That's why Quantum's brief step back to 5.25" hard drives fell flat. Eventually, as noted in the article, rust is going to run in to the immovable wall of physics AND be pinched by performance demands (I can speak from experience. Mirroring 3TB worth of stuff over USB3 took the better part of a day; transferring lots of data takes an unavoidable amount of time which opens the door for reconstruction failures) that prevent larger but slower solutions.

3
1

Cops deploy StingRay anti-terror tech against $50 chicken-wing thief

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Super conspiracy mode : ON

Search warrants are usually very specific: you're after a specific bit of evidence, nothing more. To do what you say actually requires a SECOND warrant. However, discovering the cocaine in plain sight during a legal search DOES allow the police to detain all persons within (at the least, to prevent evidence tampering) while an officer rushes off (maybe with a quick camera shot as proof) to the judge or magistrate to get a new warrant.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

I do more than that. I concede the police state as the inevitable end result of human government owing to basic human condition. EVERYTHING becomes a police state eventually. Take it down and another just rises in its place. The alternative is a total breakdown into anarchy...which eventually allows one to rise from the ashes and just create yet another police state.

2
0

Engineer uses binary on voting bumpf to flag up Cali election flaws

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Ahem, everyone voting on (almost) everything does exist....

I recognized there are exceptions to the rule; just noting the broad trend.

"In other parts of the world, different patterns have emerged. The largely Spanish oriented nations of South America have experienced wars between nations and murderous conflicts within nations which to the outside eye seem fairly homogenous;"

Like I said, exceptions to the rule. Up north around Colombia and in Central America, a lot of the violence is gang-related and stemming around the drug trade: hot-leaded competition for a lucrative resource. Towards the center most of the beef is based on political power struggles: again with the top spot at stake things can get heated at times, but they usually don't flare up that often or for that long.

"Pakistan might be seen as more homogenous and also more violent than perhaps India"

As I recall, Pakistan is also organized more tribally than in India. It's less hierarchical, less centralized, and it's one reason it's so difficult to cement a central authority in there or Iraq or plenty of other places as tribal organization tends to be more autonomous than what we're used to in the West. In other words, they're not used to running things Western style. Furthermore, I don't recall many of these tribes to be as homogeneous amongst themselves as we are led to believe, which is why disagreements between them are the norm rather than the exception.

As for the American Civil war, it was both cultural AND societal differences that caused it. The industrial North and agricultural South had diverged significantly since the War for Independence, to the effect each had a uniquely-identifiable culture (which we can still see today, y'all). Throw in a stark political contrast over the distribution of authority and just a smidgen of disagreement over people's rights and it kinda blew up in South Carolina in 1861.

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Ahem, everyone voting on (almost) everything does exist....

Because Switzerland is much less culturally heterogeneous than in the US. Swiss cultures tend to keep to within well-defined enclaves so interaction is limited enough to keep things well-managed (that was one reason for the design of Hadrian's Wall in England; it controlled cultural interaction). Whereas in the US various ethnic groups are mashed up and scattered all over the map; the end result being culture clashes.

I'd need to look, but it seems a consistent trend that the most peaceful countries also tend to be the most homogeneous.

1
0

Blighty starts pumping out 12-sided quids

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Threepenny Bit?

Thumbing it down doesn't make it less true.

http://www.snickers.com/Resources/images/share/almond.jpg

Been this way since 2000.

0
0

Daft draft anti-car-hack law could put innocent drivers away for life

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Bah

They will once they realize it's the only way to secure their revenue streams. Few things will motivate a business like the very solid threat of lost profits. (What you descrtibe was more a calculated risk; you need to raise that risk to make them pay attention).

0
0
Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: Preparation for the new laws

Actually, I was thinking something like a heroin shot attached to a life-sign monitor. Soon as death appears inevitable, it kicks in, person dies on a high and all the organs are ruined at the same time.

0
0

Trouble at t'spinning rust mill: Disk drive production is about to head south

Charles 9
Silver badge

Re: The analysis that SSD may save them is probably wrong.

Not just Windows but also with old motherboards that were built before the idea of flash as a separate interface even existed. Boards where the main reason for PCI Express was graphics and thus only had one x16 slot and maybe one or two x1 slots that may well be blocked by a double-height graphics card. Trust me, a Core 2 Quad (especially the 9000-series) still has plenty of legs so those machines still need to be accommodated.

0
0

Forums