Feeds

* Posts by Robert Long 1

1162 posts • joined 15 Jun 2009

Page:

It's official: EU chiefs WILL probe Apple's Irish tax deal

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Not so fast

"like most multinationals, it moves its profits about so as to pay as little tax as possible. This is not illegal in itself"

Actually, moving profits about for no reason other than to pay less tax is illegal. That's why they always pretend that there was a charge from one subsidiary to another and have to maintain an office in Luxembourg or wherever that is supposedly the European headquarters but employs one person part time to check the answerphone and forward the mail to the real headquarters.

0
0

Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Attacks don't matter much

"At the current time its *only* about 70,000 machines...yeah, you're right, who cares!"

Correct. I don't give a toss. Probably 100 times that number of apache sites have been attacked in the same period. Do you care? It's meaningless.

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Attacks don't matter much

How many live servers have actually been captured? That's the important number.

My home SMTP server was attacked over a million times in one year in the 00's, but none of them got through.

7
3

WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Sorry I'm late...

That's a bit limp.

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Just doing his job

He was just trying to be civil and sociable.

2
0

CURSE YOU, 'streaming' music services! I want a bloody CD

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Strange

I think it's odd how, as time goes by, the options for listening to music are gradually deteriorating. There's really nothing in the streaming/downloading arena that is as good value as simply buying a CD and ripping it to a portable device, and it seems to be getting worse. It's all a bit weird but as a result I find myself listening to less and less music every year; certainly almost nothing new goes on the player anymore, even when I like it as it's getting hard to find CDs and even then some are copy protected (without saying so) so it's a gamble. It's like the record companies don't actually want to sell music any more. Maybe it's a huge drive to make people buy concert tickets or something.

1
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Apple Provides a Cheap Solution

I don't need to stream or download anything, thanks to Apple's policy of only providing the shittiest, cheapest earphones the world has ever seen, I can clearly hear the music iPhone users are listening to from 6 seats away on the tube, even while the train is moving.

Sorted.

1
0

Patch Bash NOW: 'Shellshock' bug blasts OS X, Linux systems wide open

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

CGI Only?

So is this a problem just for CGI? I'm struggling to see why anyone outside my system would be able to call a shell command unless I've specifically allowed it. Which I wouldn't.

0
0

Le whoops! Microsoft France boss blows lid off 'Windows 9' event

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Time flies

I've not actually seen a copy of Windows 8 yet.

13
1

Microsoft vs the long arm of US law: Straight outta Dublin

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: @ Robert Long 1

"Nope. Company law.... A company is a *distinct* natural entity, just like a real person, that happens to be able to be "owned" by other natural persons or entities."

A company is not a natural entity, it's just a bunch of people trying to avoid things - risk, responsibility, and so on. Microsoft Ireland is part of Microsoft created only and solely for the avoidance of tax. What the law says about it is of no bearing on reality and those that swallow the line that law makes truth deserve the shafting they get every day from the corporations that pay big bucks to have that law written for them (very specifically, in this case, since it was US rail-baron money that got us the original "corporations are entities" crap).

0
2
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

"Data is held by Microsoft Ireland. It's a separate company "

Yeah, right. I take it you're a tax lawyer?

0
1

4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: But with 8k on the way...

@Rampant Spaniel: "That's probably closer to a decade away"

That's fine; if my current TV doesn't last a decade and more I would be fairly pissed off. It's not that long.

1
0

'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

@JDK

"It's not really that useful a feature for most people."

Until they use it. Going back to not having it is like going back to black and white TV but, yes, many people watched B&W for years happily.

5
1

Jimbo tells Wikipedians: You CAN'T vote to disable 'key software features'

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

@lurker

"The thing is, much as you may dislike the guy, much as he may be an @rsehole (I have no idea, personally), he probably HAS done more for advancing access to information and self education than anyone else in history since Gutenberg. "

Oh? Can you point out an example of that? As far as I can see he started a pumping scheme (wikipedia) for his for-profit company (wikia) and has been rolling in cash as media morons slobbered over him for allowing the unemployed to cut and paste copyrighted or just weird material into an imitation encyclopaedia.

You're saying that he does something useful in his spare time?

6
5

Hot Celebrity? Stash of SELFIES where you're wearing sweet FA? Get 2FA. Now

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

"Says celebs should have used strong passwords, two-factor authentication"

Or, you know, not store private material on a stranger's computer system.

1
0

Google flushes out users of old browsers by serving up CLUNKY, AGED version of search

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: What pleb uses Opera 12 still?

"...it's hard to pinpoint any major feature that's not there now.

Yeah, 'cos Opera 23 (the current stable version that's linked from their front page) makes it so easy to put the tab bar down the left side of the screen."

He said "major features". That's a nice-to-have.

"And I love the way it lets me group tabs together."

Actually, I like not having to wrestle with the bloody thing trying to stack tabs. I've never wanted to stack a tab in my life.

"And I don't miss the Right-Click > Edit Site Preferences menu option at all."

Well, I'm with you on that but it is still possible to edit site preferences.

"Face it, Opera as it stands is a beta product compared to version 12. And until that changes, I won't be bothering with it."

I've been using it at work for a while and it's okay, really. I miss email but work uses MS Shitelook anyway.

1
5

Love XKCD? Love science? You'll love a book about science from Randall Munroe

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

"That comic is not "clearly against dissent," it's clearly about the need to take responsibility for how people react to what you say. Isn't it also free speech for people to treat you like an asshole if you are, in their opinion, an asshole?"

I think you're being generous. The strip seems to be to be advocating a very common thing on the Internet where every site becomes an echo chamber for "acceptable" opinions. The problem with the strip is that it doesn't distinguish between unpopular opinions and, for example, just constantly posting insults.

Munroe has posted several strips which made me think that he doesn't like hearing certain opinions that don't fit into his nice middle-class worldview of how things should be and this one basically confirmed my impression of someone who wants the world to be a perfect mirror of his view point, with everthing else blocked or banned.

0
20
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Yeah, that strip was one of a few that have popped up now and then that suggests that Randall Munroe is actually a bit of an arsehole. I don't agree that it is against the holy Free Speech™ that Americans get their knickers in a twist about, but it is clearly against dissent, which is subtly different. So I've taken his advice and stopped reading his comic.

1
34

Ofcom will not probe lesbian lizard snog in new Dr Who series

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: "my suspension of disbelief finally broke"

"However, I always suspect a lesbian kiss or sex scene, as it always seems there to titillate the male part of the audience than for any plot-driven reason"

Not really going to work when the two women in question are only there to try to generate a spin-off series that Moffat can run in imitation of RTD's Torchwood. I'd sooner see them drown than kiss.

1
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Did the BBC just troll people?

"Have a listen to the Verity! podcast, there is an intelligent discussion about Clara's reactions and motivations, including the needs of the episode as a whole with relation to the audience. "

I'll give it a go but the audience's needs includes some level of characterisation which rises above the needs of this week's plotline. Otherwise there's no point in having continuing characters. Or watching.

1
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Did the BBC just troll people?

"Apart from the fact that the clockwork zombies home in on breath, and the human girl's lung capacity was less than the lizard girl's. So they shared."

Thus negating the purpose of holding their breath.

Badly written episode all round - Clara's motivation made no sense at all given that she is the one human to have seen all the Doctor's incarnations.

3
7

Why has the web gone to hell? Market chaos and HUMAN NATURE

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Human Nature

"The web is simply a reflection of contemporary society."

Maybe, but it's not a true reflection. It contains more than a fair share of the views of people who are extreme in one form or another, because they're motivated enough to spend the time putting their views out there.

Easy communication favours the nutter, whether of the cold fusion type or the Nazi type. The danger is that communication is the carrier for culture and if we continue to leave these views unopposed - and I mean strongly unopposed, not just a bit of tutting and saying "well, it's the modern world" - then they will get to shape the future. Mostly in the form of the mediaeval past.

So, the question is: should tolerant society tolerate intolerance? The answer is, I think, not if it wishes to continue.

11
10

Linux turns 23 and Linus Torvalds celebrates as only he can

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Different stream

You can't get much more mainstream than Android, it's just not the mainstream everyone expected.

Having said that, if MS were restrained from abusing the market I'm pretty sure that Linux would be as common on the desktop as it is on phones. I work on a Linux desktop all day every day and there's nothing that I miss from Windows, and if there was (Adobe CS springs to mind) I would use a Mac. There's just no reason to bother with Windows any more.

13
2

EU justice chief blasts Google on 'right to be forgotten'

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Forgotten?

"But given the hissy-fit Google seem to have been throwing about this, the only logical conclusion I can draw is that Google want to provide erroneous and irrelevant search results."

The point is that the data IS NOT ERRONEOUS. That's what we're talking about, that's the whole core of the controversy - the data is not wrong or inaccurate in any way.

PAY ATTENTION.

5
3
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Don't pretend it's a freedom of speech issue

Just because it is.

13
9

Rupert Murdoch says Google is worse than the NSA

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Nothing but repeats

Murdoch as always banged on about "the establishment" by which he always means "people who do things I want to have a monopoly on".

Like father like son, like grandson.

5
0

What's in your toolbox? Why the browser wars are so last decade

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Same as ever

Just like in 1999, there are no good web browsers. They all stink in one way or another; mostly the UI.

2
0

Simian selfie stupidity: Macaque snap sparks Wikipedia copyright row

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Petard

"Can you point to one such claim, please?"

I can't point to one in print off the top of my head, but I have seen David Bailey, Leibovitz, Hill, and others make the statement either in real life or in interviews on TV. I'm pretty sure it was mentioned in the BBC series "Genius of Photography" in connection with a photographer who used a lot of props and extras.

Which is not to say that they're right under the letter of the law, but it is a common belief among professional photographers that it is dangerous to allow assistants to actually take the photograph.

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Petard

Photographers have been arguing for decades that the person that presses the button own the photograph. This allows lazy bastards like Annie Leibovitz to sit on their arses issuing commands like "light that scene; put the props in an interesting arrangement; sort out the filters; calculate the exposure" and then step in at the last moment so that none of their army of actual creative people can claim to own the result.

Well, which is it? Is the owner the person that did all the work in preparing for the photograph, or the person that literally only lifted a finger?

1
2

Brit kids match 45-year-old fogies' tech skill level by the age of 6

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: .."have matched middle-aged folks' tech ability by the age of six"

"I would have been subject to a great deal of psychoanalysis and considered a freak!"

That's redundant - the whole point of psychoanalysis is to identify what type of freak you are (mainly for the invoicing).

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Using ≠ understanding

I suspect that similar numbers were being bandied about in the 1920s about how youngsters all knew how to drive and couldn't be bothered with horses and buggies.

But that doesn't mean everyone today can design a new car engine or even service one properly.

0
0

Government's 'Google Review' copyright rules become law

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

"Why do you assume that copyright is only for the mega rich."

Because it is. Google proved that when they industrialized copyright infringement with their Books project and got away with it.

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: I invent a cure for cancer.....

"For that I get protection of death plus seventy years."

The correct solution, IMO, would be "until death, or at least 14 years".

As for patents, just scrap them.

0
0

NASA tests crazytech flying saucer thruster, could reach Mars in days

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: I'm wainting with baited breath...

"Though theoretically you could fire photons out of a ship, just as you'd fire any energy source in any other form of propulsion. Microwaves would have a similar effect, "

Translation: you could use photons; on the other hand photons might work too.

6
0

What's that? A PHP SPECIFICATION? Surely you're joking, Facebook

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Wow.

"Since this spec wasn't written by the PHP developers themselves, what relevance (if any) would it really have?"

Go ask IBM how their specification for IBM-compatible PCs is doing.

FB is the 800lb gorilla of PHP deployment/usage.

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: In my experience...

"Can you elaborate on this? In my opinion, and it seems to be shared in this thread, is that there is no good or bad languages, there are good and bad programmers."

There are, however, languages which are a good or bad fit to your problem domain. C++ is not a good fit to web development; but then I'm not really sure what is, although I like the look of Aida running on whichever flavour of Smalltalk you like.

0
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: PHP is like democracy

"PHP may have support for objects but it's a long way from being object oriented."

Same as C++, then.

3
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Specless master of the web

"stuff like launching a process, creating temporary files, creating a fucking file, etc. are all *MORE* difficult that any other language."

You've been very lucky if you've never seen these things done worse than in PHP (which in no way implies that PHP is good at any of them).

7
0

Boffins spot weirder quantum capers as neutrons take the high road, spin takes the low

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Oh, yeah?

"That screen doesn't require a soul in order to do its job. It is merely required to interact with the quantum world in such a way as to produce an outcome."

The collapsing waveform interpretation doesn't recognize that as an outcome. Or, rather, it is incapable of defining what is and is not an outcome. Certainly the specific example you gave is not something that would cause a collapse as it's nothing more than some quantum interactions - possible interactions and no different from asking which atom a specific electron is in.

Again, I'm not arguing with QM or the results, just this nonsense that things don't exist until they're measured but the measurements somehow do exist. It's an infinite regression (turtles all the way down) and, as has been shown more than once since the 1920's, totally unneeded.

4
4
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Oh, yeah?

@Christoph: everything you said in your post is wrong. There is no need to believe in waveforms collapsing when you observe them to explain any of that and in fact the superstition that observation collapses the waveform can be discarded without disrupting QM in any way. Bohr was a mystic and deliberately put his weird interpretation on the mathematics because it suited his world view with the complementarity bullshit.

If you sit down and think about the Copenhagen interpretation it becomes clear that it depends on the existence of souls. Yes, souls! Some special thing that separates observer from observed; a special property that makes the cat's observation less valid than the experimenter who opens the box and looks. It's silly, it's nonsense, and it is totally unnecessary to make QM work just fine.

If deBroglie or Bohm had presented their interpretations first we would never have heard about Copenhagen as the response would have been "well, that doesn't tell us anything different and it introduces this MASSIVE problem of why the waveform collapses; what's the point of this interpretation?"

Separating observed and observer is mystical mumbo-jumbo, as I said.

3
13
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Oh, yeah?

"If you looked at individual neutrons, the waveform collapses"

Prove it. Here's a clue: you can't because it's mystical mumbo-jumbo.

1
19

4K video on terrestrial TV? Not if the WRC shares frequencies to mobiles

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Oh dear

"there's a long way to go before we regularly, if ever, see UHD in the home"

Well, that is a worry, isn't it?

1
2

ONE EMAIL costs mining company $300 MEEELION

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Headline wrong?

@Ross K "God you're naive if you think that's how it works."

My point is that is not how it works but it is how they tell us it works, but when they are the ones breaking the law suddenly it works differently.

"That's the level the people who complain about "THE BANKERS 0MG!!!" are at. Not a clue what they're actually complaining about..."

Basically, what you're saying is that the rich should be allowed to get away with anything and you're happy to pay for it from your own pocket. Good for you; you can pay my share too, thanks.

0
2
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Headline wrong?

How much a company is charged for borrowing money through a variety of sources and systems is a direct function of its share performance.

What has that to do with anything?

You have a very narrow view of money if you think that means money was "lost". I suspect you may have a degree in economics or something. You sound like the sort of numpty the LSE gives degrees to, at least.

"The very next day after being caught in the Libor mess, Barclays set up the Dark Pool specifically to feed lies to their customers. Because they weren't really punished over Libor."

From this we can deduce you a) don't understand libor, b) don't know anything about Barclays, c) don't know anything about dark pools generically or Barclays dark pool specifically

And that d), you don't actually have anything to say on the subject aside from posturing.

2
2
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Losses

"The fund manager has no choice in obeying those rules, and no leeway to say "It's a blip caused by a nobber""

Sounds dumb to me. Can you point out the smart bit for me?

1
0
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Losses

"Stealing from pensioners, now a legitimate form of protest."

He didn't steal anything. Not a cent. Some money moved about and at the end some dumb people had lost some and some smart people had gained some - that was going to happen anyway. Meanwhile the guy that did the posting didn't make anything at all from it.

So: not stealing.

4
5
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Losses

"Intent is a mitigating factor; it has nothing to do with whether you actually committed the crime."

In many cases it is. For example, you can't commit the crime of "murder" if you did not intend to do it, you probably committed "manslaughter" or something even less serious instead.

1
1
Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Re: Headline wrong?

"When will people stop using the bankers as an example by which they excuse their own wrongdoing?"

When they're punished? It's called "justice" and it means that everyone is treated equally by the law. Bankers are still stealing and defrauding and being allowed to get away with it. The very next day after being caught in the Libor mess, Barclays set up the Dark Pool specifically to feed lies to their customers. Because they weren't really punished over Libor.

Until they're stopped there is no moral basis for punishing other people for doing the same thing. That's just the way it is.

As to this particular story: some money moved from some gamblers' accounts to other gamblers' accounts. No money was actually lost, especially by the company who didn't own the shares!

7
7

Why Apple will continue to kick the PC manufacturers arse

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

That's a new one on me, but I've not had a working laptop for a while so maybe it's a new thing that trackpads make any noise at all.

I have to say, though, that I've never been impressed by Apple build standards, or reliability and that's a problem if you don't live near an Apple store.

0
0

Australia floats website blocks and ISP liability to stop copyright thieves

Robert Long 1
Silver badge

Nothing better to do?

What is the Australian government's obsession with copyright law?

7
0

Page: