* Posts by Dave Horn

23 posts • joined 12 Jun 2009

It's nearly 2015 – and your Windows PC can still be owned by a Visual Basic script

Dave Horn

Adobe Flash exploits... still?

You can understand an operating system requiring a steady stream of security updates over time - it's big and clunky with large chunks of code not revised for many years and written before the idea of exploits really took force.

But Flash? Every bloody month there's some new and exciting vulnerability discovered. It's 0.001% the size of an OS yet it seems to have more vulnerabilities than Windows and OSX put together. Not only that but it's got a crap updater that doesn't follow any style or usability guidelines laid down by Microsoft - hardly surprising it's ignored.

Come on Adobe - (a) consider rewriting it from scratch or open sourcing it and (b) integrate it into Windows updates so that fixes are delivered seamlessly.

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Sporty in all but name: Peugeot 308 e-THP 110

Dave Horn

Re: Bah Humbug

"Diesels are just as bad."

Since a diesel has no throttle your comparison isn't valid. The 2 litre lump in the Vauxhall Insignia (weighing, what, maybe twice as much?) can return upwards of 75 mpg when driven like a vicar and even bumbling around town has never gone below 50 mpg.

Admittedly it may be killing us all with its dioxides, but it has a DPF that seems to work. Still think the best solution for the dinky petrol engines is in the hybrid design where their sole job is to generate electricity under perfect load conditions.

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Why hackers won't be able to hijack your next flight - the facts

Dave Horn

Re: But what upgrades the software?

The A320 does indeed have mechanical backup but only for the rudder and horizontal stabilizer. It's designed to allow stable flight during a complete electrical loss or simultaneous failure of all five flight control computers.

In reality, this situation is so spectacularly unlikely it's a largely pointless enterprise and has been ditched on the newer Airbus models.

The A320 will fly perfectly happily and land safely with just one computer functional.

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New Doctor Who episode leaks online as proper trailer debuts

Dave Horn

Doctor F****** Who?

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I/O NOOOOO!!! We sat through Google's bum numbing 3-hour keynote so you didn't have to

Dave Horn

"Material Design?"

http://www.google.com/design/

Scroll down a bit, see if it looks familiar to you... You almost have to feel sorry for Microsoft here.

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Microsoft hopes for FONDLESLAB FRENZY as Surface Pro 3 debuts

Dave Horn

Potential...

Yeah, it's expensive - but no more so than your typical Ultrabook. I think it's always going to fall down if you compare it directly to the iPad, but it's like comparing apples and... cats.

https://www.yahoo.com/tech/if-you-had-to-be-a-tragic-mythological-figure-86496376264.html

David Pogue sums it up quite nicely in his article...

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Sneak peek: Microsoft's next browser (thanks, IE Developer Channel)

Dave Horn

It's running in a virtualised environment, according to Microsoft.

I quite like IE11 - it's remarkably nippy compared to Chome, which is now a dog on slower machines, and I've not hit anything that renders incorrectly. If only it had AdBlock.

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Sony Xperia Z2: What we REALLY thought of this Android fondleslab

Dave Horn

It's not that quick...

I played with one in a shop last week. Flicking through homescreens is still laggy (albeit barely noticeable), just like in the early days of Android tablets.

Yeah, there are a lot of pixels to throw around but my [insert Apple or Microsoft product here] doesn't seem to struggle.

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Microsoft’s 'FIRST NOKIA' arrives at £89

Dave Horn

Re: is it just me...

Of course, since the Lumia series with its brightly coloured cases was released six months prior to the iPhone 5C, your argument stands on thin ground.

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NHS care.data leaflet shovage: Like a 'notice for Earth's demolition' posted to Alpha Centauri

Dave Horn

"Apathetic bloody planet..."

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Noisy qubits destroy data in order to save it

Dave Horn

>> Typically, NIST explains, quantum entanglement experiments do whatever they can to avoid

>> noise, because noise can destroy entangled states (or, The Register supposes, can make

>> it impossible to measure the entangled state, but don't hold us to this).

Noise would effectively perform an independent, random, measurement on the system, making the carefully designed one you were about to do to pointless. The measurement both simultaneously performs the calculation and reveals the result, so in the "noisy" case, there is no entangled state to measure at all.

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Amazon's Virginia cloud data center knocked out – again

Dave Horn

Pot. Kettle. Black.

Ahem. Quite a few of these around on The Reg this morning...

Error 324 (net::ERR_EMPTY_RESPONSE): The server closed the connection without sending any data.

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Virgin ramps 4G to a whopping 90Mbps - and switches it off

Dave Horn

“Which is why EE, when it launched its 4G proposition two weeks ago, also said it would offer fibre optic connections to 11 million UK properties by the end of 2013."

I suspect this is more a case of LLU BT Infinity and not actually dong the hard work of laying cable.

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Western Digital My Book Thunderbolt Duo

Dave Horn

Nearly £600 and they don't even include a Thunderbolt cable?

I've returned printers costing a tenth of that because the manufacturers are too cheap to chuck a cable in the box.

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O2 drops Joggler family tablet

Dave Horn

Not all that bad...

I have three Jogglers (bought when they were £50) and they're used exclusively with the excellent SqueezePlay app running on them. This is getting even better with what the developer calls "Squeeze OS", which is a bare-bones Ubuntu installation that does nothing but fire up into SqueezePlay.

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1 euro in every 7 spent on a Visa card

Dave Horn
WTF?

"...user reluctance (or ignorance) which is preventing more-widespread use."

REALLLY? More likely the fact that despite what Visa says, not all that many cards actually support the contactless feature (ref: Nationwide, Santander etc) and it's still not 100% reliable. Most retailers still tuck away the contactless component of the reader (lookin' at you, Caffe Nero) and the look of utter surprise on the face of the cashiers suggest that they very rarely see contactless payments.

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Panasonic DMR-PWT500 3D BD Freeview HD DVR

Dave Horn

So, basically, this is £410 for a DVR that doesn't play most video types; has broken DLNA support, shows adverts in the EPG, and only has 320GB of disk space?

And Panasonic are at a loss to explain why they're about to go under. *slow clap*

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US starts charging for online visa-waiver

Dave Horn

As long as we're doing the same in return...

No doubt the proverbial would hit the fan in America if the whole EU made a similar charge in return. After all, all's fair in love and war... :-)

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Google's Android market needs Jobsian strongman

Dave Horn

The problem is Google

Android Market feels like a pet project by Google engineers. As a software developer, I don't see why I should have to suffer Market bugs such as my apps randomly not appearing in the Market. It's intensely frustrating for both developers and consumers, and right now the overwhelming feeling is that Google just doesn't care.

It's the other way round with Apple - the App Store is EVERYTHING to them and issues aren't fixed fast enough. Until Google gives me the impression that my time is more than second class (even though they're creaming the profits from the Market), my time is better spent developing apps for iOS.

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UK air-traffic offers flying-car-style safety gizmo

Dave Horn

Liability?

I should think that since it's not approved for navigation, you couldn't sue the manufacturer even if you trundled into the Heathrow Class A zone, for example. Like most things, it's designed to supplement the traditional map, compass, and stopwatch approach.

IMHO the biggest issue in the UK is actually the lack of TCAS, and even transponders, on light aircraft. ATC do a sterling job offering radar information (sorry, "traffic") service, but it's a constant stream of alerts and it only takes one to get through the net. Some people shouldn't be flying in cloud but do, and there's nothing worse than knowing there's something in your proximity and not knowing where it is.

In the US my GNS430 picked up radar data from the ground and overlaid it on the map, which was damned handy.

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Crystal ball torches woman's flat

Dave Horn
FAIL

Obligatory

Bet she didn't see that one coming.

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Barnes & Noble chases Amazon with ebook second coming

Dave Horn

But what about...

The rest of the world who doesn't want to read a book on an iPhone or laptop (ie, everyone).

There are perfectly good formats out there which can be read on the vast majority of both computers AND eBook readers such as the Sony Reader. Even better, Adobe Digital Editions can be, uh, "unlocked" quickly allowing you to make a safe and permanent copy of your book.

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EC rejects Microsoft's browser promises

Dave Horn

But what about...

If Windows is provided sans-browser, how is one supposed to get onto the internet to download Firefox / IE / Chrome etc in the first place?

I said years ago, with Vista, that all MS needed to do is offer a choice between browsers at installation. If I pick, say, Firefox, the installer will dash off to get the latest version and seamlessly install it behind the scenes.

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