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* Posts by Kevin (Just Kevin)

68 posts • joined 23 Jun 2009

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Oz metadata retention won't include URLs: report

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Source vs destination

In all the interviews I've seen/heard with people in the government who understand the topic they're talking about - ie Malcolm Turnbull - what they want is user/network/ip address/device/times. So you had IP address X on your mobile on Monday and you've had IP address Y on your home machine for the last 3 weeks. That's about it.

If they break a terror site or something like that and they spot a login from an Australian IP address, they get a warrant to find out who had that IP address at that time. NO traffic info is needed, NO destination info is needed. And they don't want any of it. They just want to be able to map an IP address/time pair to a person.

And the process for getting that info is already in place. It requires warrants and it already exists. Under warrant they can get much more information than that but Telcos/ISPs are not required to collect that info BEFORE the warrant. But all comms must be interceptable.

This push is apparently just to ensure that the info above (RADIUS data effectively) is kept for a nominated period. ISPs already collect this information in some form or another and keep it for some time (for billing) which might be very short or very long.

But I know Turnbull has been quite clear - they do not want ANY traffic information kept unless post a legal intercept order.

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Update your Mac NOW: Apple fixes OS X 'goto fail' SSL spying vuln

Kevin (Just Kevin)

What about the beta

And still no update to the 7.1beta. Still susceptible to the SSL bug.

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Update your iThings NOW: Apple splats scary SSL snooping bug in iOS

Kevin (Just Kevin)

What about Beta testers?

It'd be nice if Apple could release a 7.1beta6 to patch the vulnerability. 7.1beta5 suffers the problem (based on the various test sites that have popped up) but still no Beta 6 - and you can't, officially, go back to 7.0 once you're on the beta track (although, if you're willing to lose your backup - or hack the version strings in the backup to keep it, you can do it).

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It's true, the START MENU is coming BACK to Windows 8, hiss sources

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Proxies

I just wish they'd add proper proxy support to Metro apps. You can now import the IE desktop proxy settings via the command line but it only works for fixed proxies. It doesn't do proxy.pac or WPAD which is a 100% necessity here. Which means I can't even get weather.

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Google's JavaScript challenger gains better tools, performance

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Headmaster

3.6 x Smaller?

What does 3.6 times smaller mean? If X is 5, what is 3.6 times smaller than X? What is the smallness of X to which we are comparing? How small is it? What should I multiply by 3.6? I hate that phrasing.

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Apple dangles Spangles while Dabbsy's cables rankle

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Alert

They didn't change the icon for Find My Friends. At least not yet.

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Groupon deal spam slapped by Australian regulator

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Boffin

"The ACMA"

To be more precise, they're either known as "The A. C. M. A." (5 "words") or as just "ACMA" (1 word). I've never ever heard them referred to as "The ACMA" pronounced as 2 words.

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Last moon landing was 40 years ago today

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Last man

Amusingly - he was the last man to walk on the moon but 11th out of 12 on the list of men who have walked on the moon.

He was the 11th to step ON to the moon, Schmitt being the 12th and last man to step ON to the moon.

Schmitt got back in before Cernan leaving Cernan to leave the last footprints.

There's a great (scripted & acted) scene in Tom Hanks' "From the Earth to the Moon" where they argue who is the last to walk on the moon. Cernan claims it based on leaving the last footprints, Schmitt claims it because Cernan was 11th and he was 12th to step onto the moon.

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Dr Who shoves BitTorrent in the Tardis

Kevin (Just Kevin)

@Lord Zedd

ABC in Oz is a government funded station. There are no ads. And it's watch first time on their schedule (1 week delay, usually) and then on YOUR schedule on iView after that.

One downside is the inability to just download it and watch it on your phone on a train, for instance. That's where BT comes in.

But Doctor Who on ABC is a blessing if you want to watch it during broadcast.

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White hat warns against iPhone SMS spoofing bug

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Boffin

Only Smartphones?

" User Data Header component of SMS text messages, which defines advanced features only used in smartphones"

WHAT? UDH is used to do multipart messages and Nokia picture messages and operator logos which worked back in the previous century! The entire mobile content industry was later built in the 2000's based on UDH - Nokia pictures and operator logos and ringtones primarily.

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Apple, Amazon, close password door after horse bolts

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: Apple, not Amazon

> just to be clear...

> Amazon only listed four digits of a credit card number (a common practice elsewhere today)

No, they did one more thing than that: They allowed the scammer to add a fake credit card number to the account over the phone. Then they allowed him to use that credit card number, online, to gain access to the account and reveal the last 4 digits of the real credit card number. So they're not innocent.

BUT The story claims they allowed a password change over the phone. My understanding is that they never did that. They allowed the addition of a credit card to the account. The password change was done online.

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Voyager ticks one box for interstellar arrival

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Boffin

Bit rates is one thing... time is another

Another tidbit... One-way data travel time is over 16.5 hours!

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Apple drops '4G' label from new iPad

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: Tech specs

I think, in the current market, there's a difference between buying a PC based on specs and buying a phone or tablet. And if there's a network called 4G and a device saying it's 4G, a reasonable person should be able to conclude that the one uses the features of the other. Well, the Consumer Laws in Oz do, either way :-)

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@JetSetJim

But that's not relevant in Australia. Nobody has taken Apple to task for making a

technically inaccurate statement. Apple was taken to task for making a statement

misleading or likely to mislead consumers. There's a BIG difference. <

What the ITU states is very relevant in Australia - the "I" in ITU stands for "International",

and Australia is a member:

Yes, it's certainly relevant to what a Telco does. Not sure to what extent it applies to Apple naming its phones.

BUT, what I meant (and I did not explicitly say, I concede) is that it's not relevant to the question at hand in Australia. It was relevant to Telstra calling the network 4G. But the question in the Apple case is about whether consumers were being mislead or deceived (or were likely to be) or not. Not what a technical organisation defines some term to mean within its own ecosystem.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: @marlor

"The ITU basically said: "LTE and HSPA+ aren't 4G, but you can call them that if you insist".

I don't see the difference between Telstra's non-4G LTE network called "4G", and Apple's non-4G HSPA+ iPad called "4G". If one can get away with their inaccurate moniker, the other should also be able to do so."

Since the ITU has said you can call LTE 4G, clearly Telstra is OK in that respect from an ACCC point of view.

And, Apple has the right to say that its iPad supports networks called 4G in some places in the world.

The question, however, is if anybody would be misled or deceived by Telstra calling its network 4G? Is it faster, yes? Is it a significant step-change in technology, yes? Does the world governing body accept the moniker, yes? Is the network significantly different from anything else available in the country, yes?

Then Apple comes along, INTO THAT ENVIRONMENT, alongside the Velocity 4G and other 4G devices with a device labelled 4G which doesn't work on the now-established 4G-named network. Is that likely to mislead or deceive? Yep, it turns out.

Sure, timing has something to do with it. If Apple launched the iPad first in Australia and labelled it as 4G because it did DC-HSPA+ there might have been some arguing by others but Apple may have got away with it. The Telcos didn't considered those networks 4G (nothing much changes between HSPA+ and DC-HSPA+ - you just combine two channels - compared to the fundamental changes in LTE) but if you wanted to advertise your device as such because it did something no other devices (or only one or two) did, Apple could probably have argued that, as it's a globally accepted term, it's a reasonable thing to call it.

Then if Telstra had come along with an LTE network which didn't support the iPad 4G, then maybe they would have lost out.

The market and the terminology had already been established. And, in answer to somebody else's question about having to have different devices in different areas - YES! They may have had to do that to get away with it.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: @marlor

"LTE *is* 4G, the ITU moved the goalposts to match the marketing machines of Big Telco back at the tail end of 2010:"

The paragraph quotes still appears to say "we defined IMT-Advanced as 4G but to the extent that the term has been butchered, it can now be applied to other things". A distinction between their desired definition and their concession to using the term.

But that's not relevant in Australia. Nobody has taken Apple to task for making a technically inaccurate statement. Apple was taken to task for making a statement misleading or likely to mislead consumers. There's a BIG difference.

If Bugati advertised the Veyron as "drive to work at 400Km/h", I'm sure the ACCC would have a go at them too.

Here's the section of the act (or possibly one of them - and it may have been renumbered about a year ago) that is in question:

TRADE PRACTICES ACT 1974 No. 51, 1974 - SECT 52

Misleading or deceptive conduct.

52. (1) A corporation shall not, in trade or commerce, engage in conduct that is misleading or deceptive.

And, here's a description on the ACCC website of the kinds of things that may be included in that. Note the first one!

Examples of misleading or deceptive conduct

Whether or not conduct is considered misleading or deceptive will depend on the particular circumstances of each case. Conduct that misleads one group of consumers will not necessarily mislead every consumer.

Some examples of conduct that may be misleading or deceptive are:

* a mobile phone provider signing you up to a contract without telling you that there is no coverage in your region

* a real estate agent misrepresenting the characteristics of a property, for example, advertising 'beachfront lots' that are not on the beach

* a jewellery store promoting that a watch 'was' $200 and is 'now' $100 when the store never sold the watch for $200

* a business predicting the health benefits of a therapeutic device or health product but having no proof that such benefits can be attained

* a transport company using picture of aeroplanes to give you the impression that it takes freight by air, when it actually sends it by road

* a company misrepresenting the possible profits of a work-at-home scheme, or other business opportunity

* failing to include in advertisements that sale stock is limited in number or available only for a limited time.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@marlor

Since 4G is an acceptable moniker for an LTE network, I'm not sure how Telstra can be faulted. They have an existing DC-HSPA+ network which is marketed as 3G and called NextG. They then launched a new network based on a completely different wireless encoding technology (OFDM instead of CDMA) and, in line with the ITU recommendations at the time, called it 4G. It's more reasonable than all the silly 3.625G nonsense that has gone on elsewhere. The ACCC would have nothing to complain about. Telstra are creating the market in this case.

Once that market is created and terms become accepted within a market and a society, people start to place meaning in them. So, the consumer in Australia knows that Telstra, Voda & Optus have 3G, HSPA (of various flavour) networks which all have something technologically in common. And then they know there's something new and different with a different name.

Then Apple comes along to introduce itself into the ecosystem (in the same way Telstra came along post-ITU relaxation on terminology) and makes a claim that is not correct within the market & ecosystem into which they're introducing their technology. They could have said it supported networks around the world which were called 4G. But they didn't. They said it did 4G. And they put it on shelves next to other devices which said they supported 4G in the context of there being only one network being advertised as 4G. Also, the ITU says that people can call HSPA+ 4G if they want to. It didn't actually extend the official definition of 4G to encompass everything down to HSPA+. So I'd even disagree with the statement that it supports "4G Technology". I'd say it works on networks being marketed as 4G in the USA. Which is different.

That is misleading to consumers. Maybe not to technologists, maybe not to members of the ITU. But to Mom & Pop and Aunty Bessie, they pick up a device and say "Ooh, it's 4G, it'll work on Telstra's 4G network, I'll take one". They then discover they didn't get what they thought they had paid for. And, if the courts determine that the conclusion they reached was reasonable in the circumstances, then Apple have engaged in Misleading and/or deceptive conduct or conduct likely to mislead or deceive.

And that's a specific law that exists in Australia and the ACCC "enforces" that law. At this point, it has very little to do with technical definitions. It has almost everything to do with what a reasonable person would believe when they read the claim.

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Apple can't agree with Australian regulator on iPad 4G

Kevin (Just Kevin)

"They never said WIFI + LTE - they said '4G' and HSPA+ is 4G - end of."

They said 4G. And in the Australia retail marketplace, that means Telstra's LTE Network. No other network in this country has ever been advertised as 4G. All HSPA+ and even DC-HSPA+ networks have only ever been advertised as either 3G, HSPA(+, DC, etc) or by brand names such as NextG.

And the ACCC is not concerned with the technical specs. They're concerned with the expectations of a consumer when they buy the device. And if it says it's 4G, bought from a store in Australia, next to a whole lot of other 4G devices (which do connect to the only badged 4G network in the country) then that customer could reasonably expect the iPad to be making the same claim. They would be wrong. They might (the ACCC believes it does) make the statement misleading or deceptive.

We all acknowledge the mess with naming and calling it 4G in the US is legit. Maybe in parts of Europe too. In any technical journal or article, yep. At retail point of sale in Australia - it's a problem.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

700/2100

If/When Optus & VHA launch, it'll have to be 2100 to make those iPads work. Australia's 700, when it becomes available, mid-2013 earliest, won't work.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)
Boffin

And more than that...

Yes, technically it is 4G according to the ITU's current definition.

BUT the legislation that the ACCC enforces doesn't care. It cares whether calling it 4G in Australia is misleading or deceptive. If you have a Samsung Galaxy 4G and a Velocity 4G and a Note 4G and a 4G MiFi device and an iPad 4G and all of those things can connect to the (only) network in the country advertised as 4G, EXCEPT the iPad. Then there's a problem. Line all those devices up in a row and the average consumer would expect that the iPad 4G could connect to the advertised 4G network just like those other devices can.

And if the statement is misleading or deceptive, or people (normal, non-technical people) are likely to be misled or deceived, that's a breach of the Trade Practices Act which the ACCC enforces.

It's not a technical discussion. It's a marketing discussion. Sort of.

And, it's not a matter of it supporting an LTE frequency that Australia doesn't have yet. It's a frequency Australia will NEVER have. The AT&T and Verizon 700MHz bands will NOT be released in Australia in 2013. It'll be other bands in the 700MHz range.

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Apple Oz offers refunds for confused 4G iPad owners

Kevin (Just Kevin)

@lockwood

As I understand it, the ASA is an Advertising Standards Authority? The ACCC is a much more powerful beast. It's one of the regulators of the telco industry. It sets arbitrage wholesale access (ULL, LSS, etc) prices to Telstra's network for other carriers. It has huge power over that industry. It is also charged with enforcing the Trade Practices Act which is the Federal equivalent of state-based Fair Trading Acts which governs a huge range of behaviours of corporations.

Would a better comparison be Ofcom? Not sure?

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: Standards

> HOWEVER, in Apple's statement (found elsewhere), they claim

> "The new iPad works on what is globally accepted to be a 4G network".

> AMERICA IS NOT GLOBAL. The iPad doesn't even work on all US 4G networks

> (not compatible with Sprint).

In fairness, that statement is accurate. It does work on a 4G network. If you count LTE as 4G. In fact, it works on 2 different 4G networks. And they're right, those two networks, running LTE, are globally accepted as 4G.

Still doesn't mean it's not misleading to sell them in an Australian store as a 4G device next to other devices that actually work on the local LTE (marketed as 4G) network.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@AC

> Perhaps the networks should buy more frequency / install more kit so they can support the new iPad ;)

Perhaps :-) If it were available. 700MHz is not available (yet) in Australia. It's still in use by TV and other things. And when it is available, it's not the same parts of 700MHz that these iPads use!

It's not in the telcos' hands. It's up to the government to finish it's Digital TV frequency restacking and then release and auction the spectrum.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@Probing Analyst

> Australia is actually already planning to support the 4G 700Mhz frequency the iPad uses.

> It just isn't there yet (waiting for analog TV switch I think)

Actually it isn't. The 700MHz frequencies likely to be released in 2013 are NOT supported by either of the New iPads. The AT&T and Verizon devices are different, each supporting only one UMTS band in the 700MHz range. (UMTS Bands 12 & 17, I believe). Australia is not likely to end up with those bands.

Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/UMTS_frequency_bands

Bands XII, XIII, XIV and XVII are all in the 700MHz range. AT&T use XII, I believe and Verizon use XVII. And the two devices only support one each! [I think Oz gets the AT&T one]

Australia is not likely to use XII or XVII based on the numbers I've seen.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@AC

> HSPA+ (not sure if they have it in Oz) is what most people would regard as a 4G speed network as it's capable of over 20 megabits/s. There are plenty of 3G phones sold which cannot connect to all 3G frequencies in use worldwide.

Yes, Australia has HSPA+. DC-HSPA+ at 42Mbps (theoretical), in fact. Telstra's NextG network has been the first in the world to launch each of the successive upgrades to 3G data.

And it's NOT advertised as 4G. Only the LTE network is advertised as 4G.

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Oz regulator to Apple: Don’t call it 4G if you can’t connect

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: And more than that...

> Theoretically tho, it will be compatible if the 700MHz frequency is used for LTE. If they chose to use it for other technologies however...

NO. There are multiple UMTS bands in the 700MHz range. AT&T uses one. Verizon uses a different one (classes 12 & 17 I think). The 700MHz frequencies that will be released by the so called "Digital Dividend" after TV stations are "restacked" (if 2013 I believe) will not be in those classes. They're in another one. So even after the Oz Govt releases 700MHz and the carriers deploy networks in those bands, this iPad will still NOT work on those LTE networks.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re: "4G" is a term defined by the ITU.

> Seriously, who gives a shit about Australia ?

Well, in this case, the Federal Government of the Commonwealth of Australia does. And they passed a law that says that "Corporations shall not, in trade or commence, engage in conduct that is misleading or deceptive or likely to mislead or deceive" (I may not be 100% accurate there but darn close).

That law doesn't care what the definition of 4G is. It cares what the public reasonably perceives what a 4G network is. And the truth of the matter is that ALL UMTS/WCDMA networks in Australia all the way up to DC-HSPA+ are marketed as 3G. By all carriers. There's no argument or confusion in the market.

Then Telstra launches LTE @ 1800MHz and, not unreasonably, calls it 4G. It's within the definitions the ITU uses and it's a step up in technology. And nobody in the real world has had an argument with that. None of the other carriers have an argument about that (that I've ever observed).

So, you have a store with an HTC Velocity 4G and a Galaxy Tab 8.9" 4G and a New iPad 4G sitting in the row. One of those things is not like the other. One of those things can't actually do the 4G thing it claims to do in the environment it's being sold into. And the great majority of the population, when faced with those 3 devices (and more), would assume, reasonably, that they will all be able to access that 4G network.

That's why the ACCC are taking Apple to court. Because the law says it's illegal to do things like that if it's likely that people will be misled. It's up to the courts to decide if the ACCC is right or not.

BUT the ITU definition of 4G will probably not be a major factor.

If Apple wants to engage in commerce in a country, they, like everybody else, need to abide by the laws governing commerce in that country. And all that it would probably require, in this case, would be a line underneath the sign saying "If you travel to the US and get an AT&T SIM" (I believe the Oz iPads are the AT&T version, not the Verizon version).

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

And more than that...

> The Australians have a 41Mbit HSPA+ network, and that qualifies under the new definition.

Except that it's not marketed that way. 4G quite unequivocally means LTE in the Australian market. No carrier calls HSPA+ 4G. It's an evolution of 3G. LTE is a different technology (which is why I'm surprised the ITU didn't just go with that - it's a new generation of technology, hence a new G - DC-HSPA is just HSPA twice at the same time).

But, regardless, in Oz, 4G = LTE. There's only one such network, Telstra's and it's on 1800MHz and so the iPad can't do it. And even when the 700MHz spectrum is released in 2013, it won't be the same frequencies AT&T and Verizon (and hence the iPad) use.

Many retailers (eg JB HiFi) have taken to putting disclaimer cards up around the iPads in their store to highlight to customers that it's not a 4G device in that sense.

The Trade Practices Act talks about "false or misleading". It's not about what 4G technically is. It's about whether a reasonable person would be misled into believing that a New iPad can connect to the 4G network. Personal opinio - I'm surprised the ACCC took so long.

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The hole in the copy-proof fence

Kevin (Just Kevin)

The carrier's problem

@Spagman the problem is that the value to a carrier of these exclusive deals is that they can differentiate their brand. You don't only make money out of selling the service (assuming you sell it instead of giving it away), you make money out of people churning to you because you provide a better set of value-add services.

Sure, it doesn't make a difference to the broadcasters since there are just as many eyes seeing the content. But it does massively erode the value to the telco or ISP. In a world where bitstreams are commoditised, you differentiate on the services you provide on top of that (and network quality, customer service, etc).

So the value to Telstra (in this case, others could do the same thing to Optus with the Tennis, for instance), is the exclusivity. Take it away and the value drops considerably.

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Samsung demands iPhone 4S ban in Japan and Oz

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Coat

Airplane mode indicator?

Seriously? Somebody please stop this insanity now. You can't patent showing a status indicator, even if it is a picture of an airplane. This is not innovation. It's sheer stupidity.

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Security by obscurity not so bad after all, argues prof

Kevin (Just Kevin)

The VIP...

The point previous comments have made is that in both your cases, there is strong security for the VIP visit. Obscurity makes it more secure. Security PLUS Obscurity.

The general maxim about Security BY Obscurity is a warning not to believe something is secure just because information is obscure. The comparative metaphor would be the VIP is coming to visit, give her an airline ticket, cabfare and a map of town and send her on her way. And don't tell anybody. She'll be safe, nobody knows she's coming. THAT'S BAD.

Your Option 2 is clearly better than Option 1 but both rely on the existence of good security.

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Cancellation technique doubles wireless throughput

Kevin (Just Kevin)

The main reason to use TDMA or CDMA is for SHARING. It allows lots of phones to use the same frequency at the same time (multitasking for comms) because there's more capacity in the stream than a single user needs.

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DNS hijack hits The Register: All well

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Re; Mahatma Coat

I've seen several sites containing an image of this Reg story so Reg users with contaminated DNS could read it there. Plus, as Drewc says, word of mouth helps.

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Steve Jobs resigns as Apple CEO

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Freefall?

I doubt there will be a massive freefall in Apple stock prices. He's been on leave since January and Cook has been running the show. And Jobs is now Chairman of the Board. He's still there. He still has some overarching leadership role. And his opinion would carry serious weight around there.

In a sense, Apple is MORE Steve Jobs today than it was Yesterday. He's gone from not here to Chairman.

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God particle back in hiding

Kevin (Just Kevin)
Trollface

And then.,,

> With any luck, the narrowing window for the Higgs boson’s mass could lead to it being identified by the end of 2012.

Which means World Peace by March 2013, personal jetpacks for everybody by June, clean energy by August and all the other wonderful things we'll be able to do once we've discovered the Higgs boson.

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Atlantis crew wrap heatshield inspection

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Found another use of the arm...

So, 4 hours after announcing that STS-7 was the first use of the arm, they found some more records holding up the corner of a wobbly desk or something and posted this:

This marks the final use of the shuttle’s robotic arm, dating back to its inaugural flight on the shuttle Columbia in October 1981on the STS-2 mission, operated by Commander Richard Truly and Pilot Joe Engle for approximately 10 hours of checkout operations. Canadarm deployed and retrieved its first payload, the Plasma Diagnostic Package, on Columbia's STS-3 mission of Commander Jack Lousma and Pilot Gordon Fullerton.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@If it's damaged

That's the reason there's only 4 crew on board. A full crew of 7 really needs a standby shuttle to bring them home (which is why Atlantis was ready to fly STS-135 after the previous "final" STS-134 mission). From that point, they'd spent a large proportion of a mission preparing Atlantis for a potential rescue mission. So they got the extra cash to send Atlantis up on STS-135 with skeleton crew that could stay aboard ISS & use Soyuz to come home.

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Journo was arrested, says Qld cop

Kevin (Just Kevin)

@AdamWill

Indeed. They assert that attaining a picture from FaceBook without the authority to do so (either given to you explicitly or because it's shared publically) is a crime. And receiving that photograph (which Ben Grugg allegedly did - possibly the reason for the iPad search) is a crime just as receiving a stolen Car is a crime.

It's a little crazy but the law can be like that. Because it doesn't "get" the internet. Anybody who has browsed to a page containing that image may have technically done the same thing.

They should have the common sense to understand the difference. But the law itself is an ass, as they say.

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12Mb/sec to a mobile telephone, but is it a new generation?

Kevin (Just Kevin)

And more than that...

Down under you can get 42Mbps USB data cards. And they're still sold as 3G. LTE Advanced is officially 4G but, as the ITU says, most people will call the initial LTE rollouts 4G and they've given into that. But calling HSPA+ 4G and HSPA 3G is silly. The name gives it away. It's just a little change to HSPA.

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MS smartphone share falls despite WinPho 7

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Maybe people just don't like it

Maybe WinPho7 isn't successful because it has few redeeming features. No apps that Android & Apple give you. A completely boring UI you can't change except choosing colours and a chunk of your home screen is lost to an empty bar down the side just to hold a button which you don't need because you can slide across without it. A completely grey mail experience. No flash. No plugins. It can't stream video. You have to hand over your machine to Zune to get ANY content on the device. Which can be useful - recoding of video during upload is cool but the video player is horrible. There's a slider showing progress that doesn't let you slide. I can't get mine to turn off and charge at the same time. It just powers back on. I have to use airplane mode at night. The phone dialer is beyond basic with almost zero address book integration and when I search my address book from the dialer, I get all my facebook contacts who don't have phone numbers. There are no background apps except email so no facebook or twitter alerts or weather updates. You can't send an address book entry via sms/mms/email or anything else and there's no cut-n-paste so the best way is to read it to somebody. How 1980's.

And, if you power it on and then wait too long or do something like hit the windows button before entering your SIM PIN, you're lost. It shows a "pin required" icon that you can't click on. The phone dialer says pin required but there is no button, no menu item, nothing you can do to get the Enter PIN screen back. Either power cycle or get into the settings and go into airplane mode and then out again [BTW if you know a better way, I'd LOVE to know].

Mine's a work phone so I didn't pay for it but I'm considering going back to my HD2 with 6.5 which could actually do things and had heaps of apps available (although nowhere near Android or iOS)

MS chose to go down a new path. It could mimic Android and be fully open or go the iOS closed ecosystem way. It chose the latter. But while iOS has a huge biodiversity in its ecosystem created by an army of fan(boi)s supplying useful and/or fun apps so you don't really care that you have no control, the WinPho7 ecosystem is like being locked all alone in a biodome with a cactus.

Which is a shame, because much of the design of the system has so much promise. Even the simplicity of the interface has many positives.

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From messiah to pariah: The death of open source on mobile

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Is this about Free or Open Source?

This is a very confused story. What's wrong with an OSS 99c app? Why is that such a bad thing?

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Windows Phone 7 gets 'goodie' update

Kevin (Just Kevin)

@Tzael - Zune

Yeah, I'm sure Zune is very useful. My point is that forever we had to install extra software to connect a WinMo phone to a PC. Then Vista & Win7 came along with built-in capability for phone-sync, data transfer, etc and as soon as that happens you have to install some mega piece of do-everything software just to interact with the phone?

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

@Thank god

Some people have bundled data. Many people have wifi. Do it on the phone without forcing people to install software they don't want. At least give people the option.

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Kevin (Just Kevin)

Zune?

Really? What's wrong with ActiveSync that's built into Win7? Now I'm going to have to install some silly music hungry app that goes around my machine looking for all media it can, ingesting it into "libraries" and all the other insane things that these programs do. I don't have a Zune. I don't want to Zune.

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CDMA Verizon iPhone 4 contains GSM chip

Kevin (Just Kevin)

CDMA vs CDMA2000 vs GSM vs W-CDMA

To clarify - CDMA is an encoding technology. In the 2G days, GSM used TDMA and Qualcomm's CDMA kit used CDMA. Therein starts the problem - CDMA is a brand name AND a technology.

Enter 3G - 3GSM (or UMTS) used W-CDMA as its encoding (the W is "wideband"). The 3G version of the Qualcomm 2G CDMA is called CDMA2000 and also uses a CDMA encoding.

On the subject of antennas - it's not about the technology, surely. You don't tune an antenna to CDMA or GSM (brand, not encoding). You tune it to a frequency. If you have an 850MHz CDMA network and an 850MHz GSM network, the same antenna should work fine for both. The difference is that _most_ 3GSM networks are on 2100MHz.

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Oz road safety strategy moots mobile phone ban

Kevin (Just Kevin)

Tightened Rules?

Huh? From 1st March you will be able to legally touch a phone to dial a number if the phone is in a dash-mounted holder (previously not allowed to touch at all) and you'll be allowed to look at phone to use it as a GPS if it's in a holder (previously only a GPS could be used as a GPS). That's the opposite of "tightened".

On the other hand, it will be illegal to even look at a phone while driving* a vehicle if it has a text message displayed on it.

*driving = being in driver seat while engine is on. Even if you're in a parking spot (or, more commonly, at a red light).

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Social media and Queensland's floods: some fail, some win

Kevin (Just Kevin)

It's not about social media

I think a lot of the outrage about Bing Lee was not because it was on social media. Or even social media specific. It's because they placed a condition on their donation. These floods are devastating and the country has rallied amazingly. A major bank hands over $1.35million (not a promise, the cash is already given) and a retailer says - we'll donate money but only if people come and join our marketing exercise. It just doesn't sit right. And the twitters love the smell of blood. There are people out there really in need of help. If you have money to give, give it. Take credit if you like. But don't make it conditional on some marketing trick.

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Vodafone Aus web portal credentials escape, media panic

Kevin (Just Kevin)
FAIL

It's very different

There's a big difference between a banking site which allows you to login and see your own details and an internet-facing portal that lets staff login and see the entire customer database. Surely that should be limited to intranets, in-store networks or VPNs. Even for business partners, more security than a simple username and password on the internet should protect a company's entire customer database (which includes names, addresses, phone numbers, DoBs, credit cards, etc - it's an identity theft nightmare [or nirvana depending how you look at it]).

It's a BIG FAIL and VERY different to all the examples quoted in this story.

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Firefox 3.6.9 release candidate rocks up for sturdy testers

Kevin (Just Kevin)
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3.6?

Mine is 4.0b4. How many different FF streams are there? And how big a deal can 3.6.9 RC be compared to 4.0b4? And how can an RC be for "sturdy testers". Surely it's for anybody who is a little curious. It's an RC. It should be 99% right. Or more.

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Australia unbans the internet

Kevin (Just Kevin)
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Wrong

I hate this para - it's wrong. And it keeps on getting repeated:

"Trials of the initial system, which claimed only to block child sex abuse images, hit controversy when the secret blacklist of sites was leaked and found to contain a variety of other content - from vanilla porn to a site for a Tasmanian dentist."

It didn't claim to block only child sex abuse, it promised to block all RC content. The list was leaked BEFORE the trial. It wasn't the blacklist that was leaked. It was a list. Of something. But since no actual system existed at the time, it didn't necessarily have any relationship to anything. It could have been a list of anything of the uestionable sort. And the dentist SITE was NOT listed, it was a deep link into the bowels of his site where some Russian (allegedly) porn ring had pwned it and was hosting child (I believe) porn.

There are many reasons to object to this filter. That paragraph and all the falsehoods and misleading bits in it do no service to the cause.

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