* Posts by EddieD

908 posts • joined 12 Jun 2009

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Switch survives three hours of beer spray, fails after twelve

EddieD

Sadly not beer

We used to issue bootcamped MacBooks to our PhD students - it was a solution to not enough space for desks, but inevitably, I needed to repair them.

One day, I found one on my desk to fix, and I thought I could smell something. When I got the thing open, it stank like the broth of hell - fairly appropriate analogy the student had managed to spill fish soup on it and waited a week to bring it in.

I actually tried to rescue it, sponging it with de-ionised water, but it was beyond redemption.

At least the next one had only been bathed in baby oil.

I never plucked up the courage to ask the student how that happened.

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Germans stick traffic lights in pavements for addicts who can't take their eyes off phones

EddieD

Think of it as evolution in action.

©Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle

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Google can't hold back this malware running riot in its Play store

EddieD

Re: What chance ordinary users to stay safe?

I believe that they're called Apple.

Unfortunately.

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Windows 10 Anniversary Update draws nearer with Inky preview

EddieD

"You can also now set the taskbar to auto-hide in Tablet Mode only."

If I can't hide my taskbar, I'll be seriously peeved...

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Microsoft, Google bury hatchet – surprisingly, not in each other

EddieD

Re: encourage government regulators to investigate each other

"It's reasonable that Macs and Phones and non-x86 tablets should be preloaded"

Why?

Possibly tablets (but look at the flak google is taking for monopoly atm) - but a macbook is just a laptop. A Mac Mini is just a PC.

Sell them all naked, and make a pile of OS disks available.

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EddieD

How many times is this now?

I can't help but think of the Tom and Jerry cartoon "The Truce Hurts", in which Tom, Jerry and Butch sign a peace treaty...well, follow the link below to see how that worked out...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UaX3hvrZDJA

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Adobe scrambles to untangle itself from QuickTime after Apple throws it over a cliff

EddieD

Re: Suits Adobe Just Fine

Not necessarily - I have an old version of Première, but no Quicktime - sometimes I get a prompt "To do X you'll need to install Quicktime", so I do something else instead.

Quicktime was assigned to /dev/null (or the nearest equivalent) long ago - I used Media Player Classic and Quicktime Alternative, and then came VLC...which appealed to the inner lazy bastard.

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Sneaky Google KOs 'right to be forgotten' from search results

EddieD

Re: El Reg just lost the Google game...

then you're googling "right" or "to" or "be" or "forgotten" any or all of which and "data processing business" which will return a shed load of results.

"right to be forgotten" "data processing business" returns about 800 results.

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Windy Wanaka wallops NASA's Super Pressure Balloon launch

EddieD

Re: Timing

I suppose so - all that wind would make the tether lines flutter around, and, well, you can't herd one thousand cats alll trying to play with string.

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EddieD

Timing

Since us folks in Blighty are heading into a (very windy) late spring, I assume that the antipodean islands are heading into a late autumn...which is a season that is noted for progressively more wind as it shunts into winter.

I assume that there is a good reason for launching at this time, given that a window to launch would be less likely.

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Uninstall QuickTime for Windows: Apple will not patch its security bugs

EddieD

Re: WTF!

GoPro Studio (until I got rid of it) kept on saying that a lot of features wouldn't work unless I installed Quicktime.

I decided to live with the lack of features, and uninstalled the studio rather than install Quicktime. I don't think I've had it on my Windows machine for well over a decade.

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Flying Spaghetti Monster is not God, rules mortal judge

EddieD

Re: Excellent

Harlan Ellison was born in 1934, and Scientology officially started in 1954, but was around in various gestatory stages prior to that, so Ellison would have been a tad young to make the bet.

The version I heard was that it was Robert Heinlein, and his religion was the Perfect Universal Love that featured in Stranger in a Strange Land, amongst others.

I think that there are probably many other versions of the story, but I'd recommend you watch Going Clear, which has a fairly good history of the origins of the bullsh^w Scientology.

Anyways, I always wondered about Pastafarianism, and their symbol, the colander - is it like a crucifix? I mean, you boil pasta to death and then strain its remnants through the device... I can't see the FSM manifesting when all its followers have that on their heads.

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Lauri Love backdoor forced-decryption case goes to court in UK

EddieD

"Stephen Cragg QC, representing Love, told Westminster Magistrates' Court that the NCA application, if successful, would be a significant blow against individual privacy."

Why the heck does he think that they're doing it this way? As with the Apple cases ongoing in the US, the case against Microsoft in Ireland, this case and many others, all government agencies are seeking legal precedents for invading our privacies. These cases will run and run until the governments and agencies get their way, they have deep pockets and the ability to amend laws.

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Waiting for your Oculus to arrive? Yeah, it's going to be some time

EddieD

Ah, bollocks

"Concern has also been raised about the always-on nature of the headset. The OVRServer_x64.exe function can be used to keep connections with the Facebook server when the headset is not in use..."

I'll bet that this becomes the norm with the Samsung, HTC, Sony, Microsoft, Google, and inevitably, Apple* variants...if and when they arrive. And, as such, I probably won't bother with them, so I'll be condemned to reality, however grim.

When did privacy become a commodity?

*The original, and best, apparently.

6
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Which keys should I press to enable the CockUp feature?

EddieD

A long time ago..

Windows 95 had the "It is now safe to turn off your computer" message on shutdown. This technician thought it was a witty jape to edit the image by copying the t of to and pasting it over the w of now, and saving the image on all the machines in they department computer lab.

None of the students noticed, and I felt a complete heel when a completely genial, but venerable, emeritus professor rushed up to me in a panic, apologising frantically because he thought he messed up my computer. I stopped witty japes shortly after.

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Samsung unblocks ad-block plugins from its Android browser

EddieD

A bit unnecessary, surely?

Wouldn't it be better for an incognito mode not to have anything to encrypt, and to just never store anything?

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Confused by crypto? Here's what that password hashing stuff means in English

EddieD

Re: One more rule

+1 for the Azimov story reference - one of his more subtle, but extremely good, short stories.

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Pebble axes quarter of its workers after fitness pivot

EddieD

They're all a bit like joining a gym

Everyone has a burst of enthusiasm, then after a couple of weeks, everyone's back on the sofa with beer and pizza. I think that it's an inherently limited market that will saturate. But then again, I said the iPhone would never catch on.

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Researchers find hole in SIP, Apple’s newest protection feature

EddieD

Re: It's a bad day to be sipping...

True that, but alas, it's not yet beer o'clock, although it does come early today as it's POETGF day today :)

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EddieD

It's a bad day to be sipping...

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/03/24/time_to_sip_from_ciscos_patch_pool_to_fix_a_memory_leak/

Nothing really, I just find it funny that two different protocols called SIP are both found to have leaks at the same time.

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Israeli biz fingered as the FBI's iPhone cracker

EddieD

Re: At last, some good news about Windows phones

Nah, it's just that they don't need to crack Windows phones as Microsoft have already given the Feds the keys.

(ob disclaimer... I have a Windows phone...)

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Computers shouldn't smoke. Cigarettes aren't healthy for anyone

EddieD

Please don't remind me.

I once had to go and fix the printer of a grand dame at the University. It was an old Oki laser printer that had an open toner cartridge - I always ended up with toner to the elbows.

Worse that that though, was her computer. At that time smoking was still allowed in some offices, including hers, and she did. There was an ashtray on the base unit of the machine, below the right hand edge of the screen. The screen was yellowy-brown all the way up that bezel. The keyboard of the computer literally sucked at my fingers it was so damp with exhaled tar. Turing the keyboard upside down and tapping it (part of my standard service) produced a veritable avalanche of ash, crumbs and crud.

Fortunately, shortly after there was a smoking ban in all offices.

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Securo-bods snigger into sleeves at Norse Corp as conf sponsor

EddieD

Hmm...

I'm not surprised they're having problems...

I tried to get that threat map working in any browser at home, failed, e-mailed them for advice, no reply, but I now get* spammed to death on their mailling list.

*Should be got. Mail now goes to /dev/null

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Plane food sees pilot grounded by explosive undercarriage

EddieD

Re: "aircraft fumes"

Isn't it 100, if you can have one in the microwave?

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US DoJ files motion to compel Apple to obey FBI iPhone crack order

EddieD

I had a late night silly idea which on reflection wasn't worth posting

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EddieD

Re: This could be VERY bad for American business

If you add in the battle that Microsoft are having about Uncle Sam demanding access to data on servers outside the US, belonging to non-USasians who haven't committed a crime, and you could easily predict a massive blow to sales of US tech equipment.

The snag then is, what do you buy instead?

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EddieD

Apple will certainly take this as far as they possibly can - we've seen many times in various patent disputes how far Apple will take litigation.

I hope that they do. As has been pointed out, it seem fairly certain that there's nothing on the phone, as the owner was using iCloud backups, and was fairly thorough with the destruction of his other devices.

I still like the idea (iDea?) of Apple sayin okey-dokey, bring it here, attaching it to a device and "accidentally" bricking it.

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New Monopoly version features an Automatic Teller Machine

EddieD

Re: Settlers of Catan...

Head to boardgamegeek.com and have a look at the games there...

Thursday evenings a few friends come round and we dig out one of the many games I have in the attic - Settlers, Carcassone, Discworld, and a few times a year we get together for a full day playing something like Through the Ages..

Most familiar boardgames* seem a little 1-dimensional after playing these games. And they're easy to learn, with very simple rules that have subtleties. Sometimes it seems that the shorter the rules, the better the game.

*The ones you find in Tescos/Walmart

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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: The gargantuan Gatsby

EddieD

Re: Yum! Yum!

There's one in Edinburgh just a couple of hundred meters up from my house on Dalry Road.

A friend who worked in SA says the food's pretty authentic.

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When asked 'What's a .CNT file?' there's a polite way to answer

EddieD

Failed under continous test...

Maybe it's me, but I try to never get riled, make snarky comments or patronise my callers.

I figure that if they get pissed off enough, they may learn to open a book, or press F1, or, horror of horrors, use Google.

And when they learn to do that, I'm out of a job.

Being polite, assuring them that it is the computer that is being stupid and obtuse keeps me in beer tokens.

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30 years on from Challenger, NASA remembers the fallen

EddieD

Kennedy moment.

I can remember exactly where I was when I saw the news that Challenger had been lost - and who I was with.

I'm glad about that - it shows that exploration of space is remarkably safe, indeed, it may be said to be boring. OTOH, I wonder if we took more risks - strides, not baby steps - whether we'd be further on in our colonisation of the final frontier.

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Google DeepMind cyber-brain cracks tough AI challenge: Beating a top Go board-game player

EddieD

Re: Very Impressive

How did it like the flowers in the arena?

Otherwise, it's not an AI, it's a taskbot

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Police Scotland will have direct access to disabled parking badge database

EddieD
WTF?

Re: Why badges?

This is an odd one.

My friend has a blue badge, but it attaches to him, not to any car - on occasions I've taken him to the shops in my car, and we've used his blue badge to park, quite legally.

Okay, that was about 3 years ago, but, unless they've changed the blue badge system, I'm not sure how the police will be able to tell if a car parked using a blue badge is legitimately parked or not, unless they wait for the users of the car to return.

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Google forked out a whopping $16m on govt lobbying last year

EddieD

Pocket change.

They paid Apple about a billion to keep Google search the default on iDevices, according to a report on the beeb.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-35380696

16 megabucks really is nothing to these folk.

Edit - the report is here too. Hadn't seen the article here, but I find that more interesting, especially the alleged cover up.

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Intel admits Skylakes can ... ... ... freeze in the middle of work

EddieD

Re: Can't remember doing 88 mph this morning...

I am Pentius of the Borg. Division is futile, you will be approximated.

If memory serves me.

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Swiss try to wind up Apple with $25k dumb-watch

EddieD
Joke

Casio? Doesn't that make you a terrorist?

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Mozilla warns Firefox fans its SHA-1 ban could bork their security

EddieD

Re: Fortunately, there are alternatives

Classic Theme Restorer erm, restores the good old search interface.

I was going bananas, digging out my ESR installers, till those nice guys waved their wand.

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Flare-well, 2015 – solar storm to light up skies on New Year's Eve

EddieD

Re: Weather report

Obligatory plug: http://aurorawatch.lancs.ac.uk/

Still keeping going in the face of egregious cuts...thank goodness. I've seen many aurorae thanks to the guys at Lancaster.

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At least 10 major loyalty card schemes compromised in industry-wide scam

EddieD

Re: I feel left out

I'm actually paranoid enough to use cash for most of my purchases - shopping for food mainly at a local market that only accepts cash helps with this. And at the supermarket it stops my bank telling my insurers just how much I drink per week...

I'm reminded of a Calvin and Hobbes cartoon:-

http://assets.amuniversal.com/d011b090df960131725e005056a9545d

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Review: Star Wars: The Force Awakens offers a new hope for the franchise

EddieD

I may go see it

After seeing the Phantom menace I swore off Star Wars. I thought the Red Neck review which you can find on YouTube, whilst hideously over the top, is essentially accurate. And, just as few English actors can do a good Scots accent, few Scots (other than posh Edinburghers) can do a convincing English accent, and Ewan, who is a fine actor, couldn't do a convincing Alec Guinness.

However, given the positive reviews, I'll go and see it, but I'm going to wait until it's been out for some time, and I can get a discount - I'm not paying the rip off amounts that cinemas charge these days.

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Tablet computer zoom error saw plane fly 13 hours with 46cm hole

EddieD

Re: Errr..clarification

Interestingly* though, if you take a bike on a plane most airlines (Hello Easyjet) force you to flatten your tyres before they put it into the hold so that the tyres don't explode in the low pressures at altitude. Most tyres could cope with the lower pressure anyway if the hold wasn't pressurised - a 100psi tyre should be able to be inflated to 130 without issue.

Last time I flew with my bike I just sent it into auto-baggage handling as the case is of a size that is compatible with such systems - I did put a large sticker on it explaining what it contained. Its tyres survived the flight quite happily.

*Well, interesting to me, anyways.

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EddieD

Re: @ RIBrsiq @Turtle Typo Or Not?

V2 is now the Samsung Sur40 iirc

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GCHQ Christmas Card asks YOU the questions

EddieD

Very cryptic

The page with instructions won't resolve in my copy of Firefox - I use NoScript and AddBlock, but right clicking doesn't even get a context menu.

Which leaves the question, how do they know it's me to block me?

Hmm, no tinfoil hat icon...

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Day 2: UK research network Janet still being slapped by DDoS attack

EddieD

Re: Need to get back to my assignment but

Or, as was the case at my Uni, all the students used their gmail accounts.

As did all the staff.

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Everyone wants a piece of software maker Atlassian's ass

EddieD

Good for them.

I enjoyed using Confluence when I was working at a University, it was easy to get to grips with, even for the less computer literate, which made my job in support less painful.

I think that the lack of marketing/direct sales is a plus - they only put in the software what is asked for, not what they think might make a good sales pitch.

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'Dear Daddy...' Max Zuckerberg’s Letter back to her Father

EddieD
Joke

Okay, she's young...

but a blastula isn't a single cell. It's at the stage where the ball of cells starts developing a hollow, fluid filled interior (the blastocoel), the cells start to develop identities (Vogt's fate map), etc.

I know, she's wee, but they have to start learning sooner or later.

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Commentard achieves bronze badge, goes directly to jail

EddieD

Re: D****

Sherrif he says - which would indicate he's north of the border.

I'll check the papers.

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Reg mashup rates CompSci unis for books, booze and boogie

EddieD

Time to do a Basil Fawlty

Glad we're not on the list...we don't want any riff-raff

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Oracle: Fight for the right to be third to Amazon's AWS

EddieD

Re: That's not quite how Oracle will gain a foothold

Depends what the metric is - Microsoft may be ahead in revenue, but given Amazon's ruthless price cutting strategy, they're going to be ahead in numbers - customers/VMs/apps/whatever...

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Bacon can kill: Official

EddieD

Risk assessment...

"increases the risk of colorectal cancer by 18%"

That's 18% of about 4.5% or your chances of getting colorectal cancer goes from 4.5% to 5.3%, which doesn't sound so scary.

Everything has a risk, we have to balance risks, and I'm not giving up my bacon butties when I've got a much higher chance of being mown down at some point in my life when cycling than getting colorectal cancer, so I might as well enjoy myself whilst I can.

I've no doubt I said the same thing about cigarettes when I was a smoker...

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