125 posts • joined 15 Jun 2009
Re: But Branston Pickles Did ruin my Wife!
You certainly know your (pickled) onions!
Re: Trade not aid Hmm... aren't we missing the point here?
Give a (wo)man a gun and (s)he'll rob a bank.
Give a (wo)man a bank and (s)he'll rob the whole country!
Don't blame the server!
"...while we take the tooyo'oenoo' to the BuzzGasm server."
Surely it would be more appropriate to take the tooyo'oenoo' to Mr Haines?
Re: Money pit
Sadly all too true. On the plus side, however, having had the pain of moving from multiple systems to a single one means that the next move will be a little easier as it's just from one system to another. Hopefully..
Re: If those are scam sites...
But they're not taking money under false pretences! They offer you a site where, for a fee, you can complete your details which they will submit to the relevant goevrnment department on your behalf. They take your money and they do what they say, so in what way is it false pretences? You have the choice of using them or using the official website; you get the same result in both cases, it's just that one is a lot cheaper.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not defending them. They are preying on the gullible and less observant and I thyink we should find a way to close them down, but nothing they are doing is illegal unfortunately. Some of them do come close though where the design of their site closely mimics the colours and fonts used by the official sites. Is there no possibility of prosecuting them for "passing off"?
Re: iPhone 4S
@Joe 35 - I thought I'd addressed the ease of replacement by pointing out that I didn't need to take it into a shop. The fact it's also cheaper and more convenient is a bonus.
Re: iPhone 4S
Apple replaced the battery for £45? I can pick up a (genuine) Samsung battery for my S4 for about £25 - and I don't have to take it into a shop to have it replaced! Even better, I can charge it and carry it with me in case the battery in the phone runs out of juice. It's called convenience.
Life in the old dog eh?
I got my first job as a trainee programmer 35 years ago this summer and learned COBOL on an ICL mainframe, later transferring to IBM mainframes. I remember in my second week at work picking up a copy of "Computing" and reading the banner headlines that COBOL was dead and soon nobody would be using it. I wondered seriously if I'd made a big mistake.
Time passed. COBOL became un-sexy and was never mentioned. Then the world woke up to the "Millennium Bug" and suddenly grey-haired COBOL programmers were coming out of retirement and earning mahoosive amounts of money. And now this article...
When Commander Grace Hopper "built" a language she built it to last!
The first programming language I ever learned - back in the halcyon days of 1975. I bet more than 50% of El Reg's readers (and writers!) weren't even born then!
Who needs it?
I'm quite happy to forego the ability to play music on my smartphone. I know I'm weird, but I much prefer my trusty old 160Gb iPod Classic for playing music. It's the only time I've bought a fruity device and only because nobody else makes an MP3 player with that capacity - I currently have 15,000+ tracks on it. Added bonus is that it docks in my car and I can listen to as much music as I want or read/send emails or browse without worrying that I've used up precious battery juice on music.
Re: So once again the advertising companies s**t over your privacy
24/7/365 - so that will be seven years then (actually not quite seven years because of leap years)?
24/7 = "all the time", 24/365 = "all the time", but 24/7/365 is just silly!
Given that a new iPhone comes out every year and true fanbois will queue up like sheep to get their hands on the latest model as soon as it's available, who keeps an iPhone for more than 12 months? It makes the Samsung phone with it's 18-24 months of ownership look positively long-lived!
What's the problem?
I don't understand what the big problem is here. If it's getting too hot inside why don't they just open the windows for a while until things cool down?
Unfortunately whilst they're a public service they are also a private business. GPs are independent private contractors who work for the NHS. Most of them own the premises they work in as well.
Re: Security fixing...
It rolled under the settee...
Re: Bah humbug
Maybe if Christians hadn't attempted to hijack Saturnalia - a Roman feast dedicated to eating, drinking and gift-giving - they wouldn't have this problem. Most of us are doing what it says on the tin!
Re: 3 Wise Men
Why three? Nowhere in the Bible does it say there were three wise men; three kinds of gift are mentioned, but not the number of people giving gifts. See Mathhew 2: 1 - 12. As a firm non-believer I find this question always peplexes those who believe in the old bloke in the sky.
Re: A million eyes look at the source
This kind of thing makes me wonder about the whole "open source is inherently safe 'cos anybody can look at the code" thing.
I would question whether anybody actually does look at the code. I rather suspect that because it requires (a) a very high level of understanding and (b) a lot of time and effort, very few people (if any) actually do. How many actually download the code for the latest release, review it, and then compile it for their own machine? Doesn't everybody just dowload the latest update from a site they believe they can trust.
This is an honest question - I have no angle and am not trying to make any point. I would genuinely like to know.
Re: is that dark shadow...
Why is it "coming soon"? You have always been able to carry your phone, tablet, e-reader, laptop, camera, etc. onto flights. So if you wanted to create a "gadget bomb" then you could always have done it. This rare outbreak of common sense changes nothing.
I'm sure this will be a great relief...
...to the poor souls in the Phillipines who survived the terrible storm and are now desperate for food, water, medicine and help to bury the estimated 10,000 dead. At least they'll be able to console themselves with their shiny new iToy.
First multi-tenant database?
Way back in 1986(ish) a project I worked on for the NHS used a multi-tenanted database that was built on ICL's (horrendous) IDMS dbms - and I certainly don't think we were the first. On that basis Oracle very definitely aren't the first.
Re: Pretty much what I do
This may be an option for a small subset of email users, but not for the majority.
My neighbour is a very sprightly woman of 83. She's neither particularly bright nor particularly stupid; let's say "average" intelligence. With some initial help she overcame her fears of using a computer and now keeps in touch with her children, grandchildren and great grandchild who are scattered over three continents by means of email, Skype and a number of picture sharing sites.
Do you want to tell her she needs to install a Linux box and run her own email?
I'm distinctly old-school - I cut lots of COBOL code in the late 70s and early 80s. I'm part of the reason you had all that fun re-writing it in 1999 ;-)
Two particular memories from having to amend programs others had written:
1. A long program (about 10,000 lines of code excluding the Data Division) which was generally well commented. The comments were brief, to the point and helpful except for THAT section. This was a chunk of about 1,000 lines of incredibly intricate code that used some of COBOL's more obscure functions in very "creative" ways. It had one single line comment at the very beginning which began with the unforgettable words "This section simply..."
2. Amending a program that had been amended and added to by three programmers before me in addition to whoever wrote it. Clearly whoever had done one of the amendments had had a bad time with whoever wrote the spec because two of the data items he had defined two were named "NEVER-MIND-WHAT-YOU-MAY-HAVE-HEARD" and "JUST-STICK-TO-THE-BLOODY-SPEC".
Ahhh... happy days!
(Beer - 'cos I wrote some of my best code after two-hour boozy lunchtimes!)
Re: Too bad!
This shows that absolutely no expense was spared in faking the moon landings. Film and pictures of the landings are the obvious thing to do, but imagine thinking up an obscure little piece of corroboration like this just to add credence to the fraud!
How do we know the message genuinely is from Levison?
IANAL but I don't think you can patent a name. You *can* register it as a trademark.
Imposing fines like that is really going to be a deterrent - I mean, it's almost a day's interest!
I for one...
...welcome our new bling-covered overlords!
Thanks for a fascinating and enlightening piece. Thank you too for sharing; it takes great courage to identify yourself in the workplace as being not NT and I applaud your bravery in sharing this with employers. So many employers lack a proper understanding and usually run a mile form anybody who is in any way "different", so kudos too to your present employer for not being typical.
My own particular "thing" is that I suffer periodically from depression. Unfortunately I have yet to discover the secret of how this can be a positive. What I _have_ discovered is that employers regard it as a definite no-no which leaves me with a huge dilemma. It is part of my nature to be open and up-front with people in aspects of my life, but sadly being open and up-front about my depressive episodes is not a plus when applying for jobs. I am therefore forced to conceal it which does not sit happily with me. So, again, I hugely respect your openness and honesty with your employer.
Wasted on me!
As several commentators have already noted, this is only worthwhile if the listener is capable of hearing the difference. A combination of age plus 5 years spent as a roadie in the middle- late-70s means my hearing is f*cked so I would never hear the difference.
MS already chose the perfect song...
...when they licenced the Rolling Stones "Start me up" for the launch of Windows 95. To quote from the lyrics:
"You make a grown man cry"
Re: The Soviets claimed the flight was a spying mission, but it was ... off course
Trawlers used to leave Hull for the Arctic with more antennea than fish
I am not a trawlerman so please forgive me if I get this wrong, but surely this is situation normal? I mean, as I understand it, you tend to leave your home port without a catch and so you would quite likely have more antennae than fish. It's what you have aboard when you come back that matters surely?
Brings back memories
Many years back whilst working for another company we arrived in the office one Monday morning to find the mail servers on the floor and in need of life-saving treatment having become "full". Hours later when normal service had been restored and the full post-mortem began we discovered what had happened.
At the time we had no remote access into email so one Thursday a contractor, prior to going home for a three day weekend, set up an auto-forward rule in his mailbox to forward any incoming mail to his Hotmail account and an account with another ssupplier (can't remember who). This despite a total ban on auto-forwards to outside the company.
Everything was fine throughout Friday; emails arrived and were forwarded to his two private accounts. Unfortunately at some point on Saturday morning his Hotmail inbox became full and so the next time it received a message from his work account it replied saying that it was undeliverable because the mailbox was full.
So our system duly forwarded that to his Hotmail account...
Which replied that it was full...
Repeat this loop until some time later his other account became full...
...and started sending replies that it couldn't accept incoming messages because it was full. Which our server dutifully forwarded to BOTH accounts which BOTH replied that they were full...
And some time on Sunday our mail servers gave up because THEY were full.
Oh how we laughed! Or maybe we didn't. The contractor had his contract terminated that day.
Getting your imitation in first?
"Though few smartwatches feature a camera, even the Gear’s integrated 1.9MP component isn’t original: Omate is promising to build a 5MP camera into its TrueSmart watch"
I'm fascinated by your definition of originality. Samsung are first to market with a feature (camera in a smartwatch) and yet somehow they're copying a proposed feature from a watch which will only be produced if the crowdfunding works. How does that work then?
Re: Doomed to fail
It's not just the public sector that's still using IE6 though!
About 18 months ago, when I was still working for my previous employer, I became involved in the pre-contract negotiations with "a major high street bank". They were looking to buy a service from us which would have been delivered on a SaaS basis with their staff accessing the system from a browser; all of the processing was done by us and nothing would have been installed on the bank's infrastructure.
They spent several meetings grilling us on the minutiae of our implementation, particularly security, and raising "issues" about totally irrelevant points. We came to the conclusion they didn't really understand security on a web-based system.
After one particularly gruelling meeting where they'd worked us over even more than usual they concluded by asking what browsers we supported. Thinking they must be keen to have a really secure browser I was pleased to be able to list all the versions of all the major browsers that our system was compatible with only to be asked "Yes, but what about IE6?". Turns out that was the only browser that their (in-house) branch software would work with and so they couldn't use anything else.
My 34 year IT career has been split almost exactly 50/50 between public and private sectors and in my experience private sector IT has nothing to crow about. The only difference is that disasters tend to get hushed-up as much as possible to avoid "damaging the brand image".
Re: Never mind the physics
Nah - it's too cold. All the water is frozen solid so where would you put the laser-toting sharks?
Not completely foolproof then?
HMRC’s online systems proved extremely resilient to these attacks - they correctly identified and prevented the vast majority of false repayment attempts (my emphasis)
So they didn't block all the dodgy transactions then? Nice headline grabbing figure of £500k that they could have got away with, but how much did they actually get away with? Has it been recovered?
logs 2,776 incidents of "unauthorized collection, storage, access to or distribution of legally protected communications"
Which particular meaning of the word "collection" is being used here?
Re: Shock! Gmail works just like Google said it would...
I'm one of those people who always reads Ts&Cs. Life is slower, but less surprising that way
Your life must move VERY slowly indeed given that, for example, the Ts&Cs for PayPal are longer than the text of "Hamlet" (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-22772321) which at 4,042 lines or 29,551 words is Shakespeare's longest play.
Re: Subeditor, hallo?! yoo-hoo!
"I read El Reg for *accurate* reportage"
I think I can see where you went wrong...
Re: couple of years late
According to one report I read (BBC I think) they were caught in Tufnell Park. Now while that *IS* technically in Islington (although only just, it's on the border with Camden) upmarket, trendy Islington it is not. Alongside all the rich trendies some parts of Islington are extremely run-down and deprived.
Re: It's only ridiculous....
Situations like this for example - http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/crime/9392950/Traveller-family-guilty-of-forcing-homeless-men-into-slavery.html
Held prisoner at work?
Ummm... "Are employees within your organisation free to leave the workplace after work?" isn't a totally ludicrous question.
Last year the government announced that it wanted to increase the amount of paid work prisoners did whilst serving their sentences - see http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/plan-for-cheap-prison-work-may-cost-thousands-of-jobs-7815140.html. Huge benefits for the employer becuase they can pay considerably less than minimum wage.
Re: Genuine Question
Public sector bodies are obliged to report any data breach, there is no duty on the private sector other than some vaguely worded best practice - "organisations are able to report losses of personal data to the ICO which the ICO encourages, however reporting such losses of personal data is not compulsory". Therefore the private sector rarely reports losses, if at all. They only tend to come to light by a different route because the organisation is, for example, in a highly regulated sector such as finance and they have to report it under compliance rules..
In 30+ years of working in IT I have worked for both the public and private sectors. Where this kind of thing is concerned neither side of the divide has anything to be smug about. I have experienced data losses in both types of organisation, but in the private sector we were able to hush it up - got to think of the affect on customer confidence and the share price after all! Nobody got fired either.
Basically this is an issue that nobody wants to take seriously until after something bad has happened.
Re: Still waiting!
Yeah - I was aware of that kind of thing. However "...One button operation to announce time" doesn't fit what I had in mind. In my original post I quite clearly said I didn't want a watch where I had to do *ANYTHING*; it should detect me wondering what time it was and automatically tell me.
Re: In five years..
The battery will, obviously, be fitted internally somewhere in the user's body. In line with other iDevices it won't be replaceable by the user. Instead you'll have to go to an official Apple optician - or iDoctor - to replace it.
I'll get my coat...
I'm still waiting for a watch that will *TELL* me the time. Every watch I've ever owned has failed to do this - I always have to look at them and read the time off the face. I did briefly have a bedside clock which would speak the time if you pressed a button on it, but again that requires me to do something. I'm waiting for the watch will detect me thinking I wonder what time it is and then tell me.
But since the metal Kg is de facto the "accurate one" at the moment, surely your question should be "...how inaccurate the new standard will be when compared to the existing standard"
And presumably they want all those people they employ to be able to read and write, count, and have other skills obtained at school? And when their employees are ill they'd like them to be able to see a doctor or go to hospital? And to be able to drive to work on a road, or get a bus which also uses the road? Presumably they'd also like some framework of laws and people to enforce those laws so that their goods don't get stolen from their warehouses, their PCs don't get stolen from their offices, etc. I could go on...
Now, who are we going to get to pay for the schools, teachers, doctors, nurses, hospitals, roads, police, judiciary, prison system etc.
Oh! I know! It could come out of taxation...
Re: Great but oversold?
But when you haven't got taxpayers breathing down your neck about "wasting" their tax dollars you can just go ahead and do it. When you're the biggest single shareholder then you don't have to worry about other shareholders either.
And let's not forget that they are "standing on the shoulders of giants". Without all the (government) expenditure on Mercury, Gemini, Apollo and Shuttle missions (plus numerous others) to do the basic research and then turn it into reality then Musk would have needed even deeper pockets.
None of which is to diminish in any way what he has accomplished. I am in awe of his vision and all that he has achieved. As a boy I grew up watching the space race, and I sat up late to watch the Apollo 11 landing. This impresses me every bit as much.
- Mounties always get their man: Heartbleed 'hacker', 19, CUFFED
- Analysis Oh no, Joe: WinPhone users already griping over 8.1 mega-update
- Leaked pics show EMBIGGENED iPhone 6 screen
- Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
- OK, we get the message, Microsoft: Windows Defender splats 1000s of WinXP, Server 2k3 PCs