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* Posts by Andy Gates

131 posts • joined 10 May 2007

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Moto 360: Neat gizmo – if you're a rich nerd

Andy Gates

Re: just me ??

" the battery life just isn't acceptable. I wear a Basis, one of the fitness watches, and its battery lasts four or five days. That's already short enough to be a major hassle. "

Charging when you've noticed that it's run out of charge and gah, you wanted to go for a run -- that's a hassle.

Charging every day is ritual, and if it's easy enough (no connectors), it'll be ignored.

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Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch

Andy Gates

Hold your horses on the HRM until it's tested; I'm told by the nice folks at Runkeeper that these devices aren't doing continuous HRM with their optical sensors as it's a battery hog. Might be some trickery needed before they're ready for a lazy parkrun round El Reg Towers.

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Finally, a practical use for 3D printing: Helping surgeons rehearse

Andy Gates

Re: Useful stuff

And in China, they've just done a vertebra. Invest in titanium sintering, say I.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jenniferhicks/2014/08/19/peking-university-implants-first-3d-printed-vertebra/?utm_campaign=techtwittersf&utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social

I wouldn't be surprised to see the big orthopaedic centres getting their own fab facility for both practice parts and implantables.

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Andy Gates

Re: Goth friends

My own skull, topped and hollowed and made into a Byronic goblet, thank you very much.

/oldgoth

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Uber and Lyft sitting in a tree, 'c-a-n-c-e-l-l-i-n-g each other's rides'

Andy Gates

Re: wait, what?

More the use of lots of freshly-created accounts. Hide that shadiness for maximum shade.

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Mars rover 2020: Oxygen generation and 6 more amazing experiments

Andy Gates

Re: MOXIE

Nope, it'll just crack atmospheric CO2 into 2x CO and O2. As seen in Zubrin's Case For Mars, and in fiction in KSR's Red Mars and recently Weir's The Martian.

http://www.nasa.gov/press/2014/july/nasa-announces-mars-2020-rover-payload-to-explore-the-red-planet-as-never-before/#.U9tpGOOzHgg

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NASA aborts third attempt at finally settling man-made CO2 debate

Andy Gates

It's already decided; this just adds resolution to the picture. Knowing where natural sinks and seeps are means we can look at emulating them to scrub the extra out, for example.

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Greenpeace rejoices after getting huge renewable powerplant CANCELLED

Andy Gates
IT Angle

Mod -1, flamebait.

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Look inside ELON MUSK'S CAR! Tesla S wundervehicle has voom

Andy Gates

Re: Superchargers Free!

How, I wonder, does the eebil government tell the difference between juice for a car and for a kettle?

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Andy Gates

Re: "The 125kW Superchargers work much more rapidly than the existing charging infrastructure.."

And that's why Tesla plan to release the Supercharger patents; as the best-in-breed, allowing non-Tesla-built compatible infrastructure will get the pumps in place.

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Scoff ye not: Chap carves crunchy carrot-copter

Andy Gates

If I were a betting man, I'd say he pranged his X4 (quadcopters being crashing machines that sometimes fly) and rather than faff with repairs, got wonderfully silly.

It's a pity cruciferous veg aren't more cruciform or we could crew up the Sprout Patrol...

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Nintendo says sorry, but there will be NO gay marriage in Tomodachi Life ... EVER

Andy Gates

Re: "such a significant development change"?

You're confusing activities with orientation. The debate has kinda moved past that now.

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Titsup UK Border IT causes CHAOS at air and seaports in Blighty

Andy Gates

Also note how many have "this till closed for a technical fault" when they're just closed for any reason. Always blame IT. :(

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Google's self-driving car breakthrough: Stop sign no longer a problem

Andy Gates

Re: Quaint already

There are videos of simulations like that. From overhead they are absolutely beautiful algorithmic shoaling. From inside... I'd want blacked out windows. Yoy!

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Andy Gates

Re: But I wonder

Don't worry, little brother, that won't happen. It puts an unreasonable burden on the squishy, and you'd have to have some heavy upheavals in law to make it even halfway permissible.

Save your paranoia for the eyes, the always-on unblinking remorseless REPORTING TO GOOGLE EYES!

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Andy Gates

Re: 700,000 miles

Oncoming vehicle in your lane? Come on, that's not even exotic.

The loom was at least novel.

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Andy Gates

A cyclist taking the lane in front of it will be handled fine. It knows where the cyclists are and roughly what they're doing, and has sharp reflexes. It just needs to edge forward when clear.

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Japan plans SEVEN satellite launches to supercharge GPS

Andy Gates

A good use case for Ara

If it's not compatible, it's a fine use case for a modular device that can change the GPS module.

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Windows XP still has 27 per cent market share on its deathbed

Andy Gates

Re: Post-Death Updates

Well, the public sector just got a year of patches. A very reasonable £5.5m, too. Given the porosity of the internet, those updates will get public smartly. Getting updates from random sources of course opens the home user to the risk of fake XP updates... fun fun.

My Y2k-sense is tingling. I think more of a whimper than a bang, but I'm ever so glad for the extended support while we grunt through updating our zillion desktops.

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Drone 'hacked' to take out triathlete

Andy Gates

Re: Occam's Razor

Aye. "Just dropping out of the sky" is a thing that quadcopters *do* - they're crashing machines that sometimes fly. Having it close over the racers might have made for some thrilling shots, but you have to leave enough clearance to be safe.

The "magic jib"-ness of a camera drone is sometimes too magical for the safety considerations to be remembered.

"OMG hax" ... sounds weak to me.

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Triple-headed NHS privacy scare after hospital data reach marketers, Google

Andy Gates

Re: HES Data

Various analyses and extracts are. I bet they'd look at you funny if you said "giz the lot".

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Ill communication delays NHS England's GP data grab for six months

Andy Gates

Re: Which third parties?

If it were properly anonymised (with a route back in case of clinical need) and if it were restricted to real research organisations, I'd be gung-ho for it as a great case of Big Data doing useful things.

If it's sold to Experian or that bloody Meerkat, who jigsaw it back together to deny me a good credit rating or insurance premium because of my last peak flow or my old genetics tests -- that's incredibly sucky. That's a *gross* violation of patient-doctor confidentiality.

We expect the latter. If the intent was the former (Hanlon suggests it was), there's more than communication problems.

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Andy Gates

"What I don't understand is how can the government can avoid any Data Protection issues here? This secondary use of the data is not consistent with any (implied) consent a patient may have given a doctor."

I'm equally baffled. Here I am slaving in a hospital IT department surrounded by IT governance reminders, and the National bunch are hawking off weakly-anonymised data well in excess of its remit. How on *earth* is that legal?

The Helpline unhelpfully says "It's within the law, don't worry your pretty head". Eesh.

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Virgin Galactic's supersonic space ship in 71,000-ft record smash

Andy Gates

Re: What is the long term goal?

Ostensibly it's a rollercoaster.

It's also mostly a technology demonstrator - Scaled and Virgin have always been clear that they have an SS1 / SS2 / SS3 plan in mind, with each model proving stuff for the next step up. Sky-launched re-entering rocket rollercoaster is preamble for something with beefier engines and actual LEO capacity.

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Don't panic! Japan to send nuke fuel rod into MELTDOWN in Fukushima probe

Andy Gates
WTF?

Re: What is Renewable about Renewables?

Are you serious? What's renewable is that the giant solar atomic furnace keeps on making wind and light for free. The prime mover is continuously being renewed instead of consumed.

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Block The Pirate Bay? Arrr, me hearties, new P2P client could sink that plan

Andy Gates

Re: It's a question of trust

Ads?

I'm a bit surprised that anyone savvy enough to torrent isn't savvy enough to adblock.

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Andy Gates

Re: We need more of this.

They certainly are. I voted with my wallet and went to one of the smaller ISPs that don't censor.

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NHS carelessly slings out care.data plans to 26.5 million Brits

Andy Gates

Re: If they are anything like ATOS

It's not stopping him from working.

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Andy Gates

Re: GP's Opening Hours

Email them. Most GP's surgeries have an email address.

Technology: not just for evil.

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No anon pr0n for you: BT's network-level 'smut' filters will catch proxy servers too

Andy Gates
FAIL

Re: "Web filtering is already the default on mobile phones."

It's worse than that: they KNOW it's ineffective and *they don't care* - Something Must Be Done and compliant masses are always good.

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China's answer to AIRPOCALYPSE: Fire up the supercomputer

Andy Gates

Re: They have to do something

We tackled that with the Clean Air act and its friends. Low-emmissions fuel and a big push to electrify (and gasify) domestic heating.

Should be relatively easy for a more centrally-controlled setup to reproduce. Wrap it in a 5 Year Smog Plan and Chang-e's your bunny.

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LG: You can stop hiding from your scary SPY TELLY quite soon now

Andy Gates

Re: Aren't they breaking the law?

Computer Misuse Act, anyone?

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Andy Gates

Re: And...

" I had already been thinking of updating my firewall setup to stop devices like this initiating outbound connections."

...which would have to be done with a bit of finesse, as there's content-delivery services in among the spook-drops and advertising servers. Next thing you know, the baked-in Netflix stops working.

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Is it all up for LANDFILL ANDROID? BEHOLD, the Moto G

Andy Gates

Re: not a galaxy killer at all

I would have thought no SD was a killer, but apparently I've only got 11 Gb on my 32 Gb card in this ol' stuck-at-Gingerbread Defy+, so maybe it's not such a big deal after all. The 16Gb versoin looks very tempting.

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Sysadmins forced to CLEAN UP after bosses WATCH SMUT at work

Andy Gates

Re: not entirely fair

I've certainly seen "so what? you can't sack me" from some of my bigwigs in more than one job.

One rule for the plebs, another for the hoi polloi...

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Indestructible, badass rootkit BadBIOS: Is this tech world's Loch Ness Monster? VOTE NOW

Andy Gates

Say you have two infected computers, one on the network and one air-gapped. This allows them to communicate across the gap.

If the payload is stuxy-specific then it could be, say, "dude, have you found the file [checksum]?" "yep" "I'll phone home then". Not much communication is needed to be useful.

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Andy Gates

Re: I voted entirely plausible

My Polar F6 HRM communicates by sound: it chirps like a cricket and is very finicky. But most of the finick is with having to retry, and that doesn't annoy scripted processes. Making it chirp outside human hearing is a whole other matter.

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Leaping SpaceX GRASSHOPPER ROCKET jumps 2,500ft, lands safely

Andy Gates

Re: extra flame

It's the pump exhaust - new on the 1D. The previous engine incorporated it into the main burn, for a tad more power and a lots more engineering. The 1D is geared to mass production, so the complexity was dropped and you get that wiffly flame at low speeds as a result.

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Scottish NHS bosses say soz after 2-day IT ballsup scrubs 700 appointments

Andy Gates

I'd be impressed if all their systems are AD-integrated that tightly. There's commonly lots of legacy stuff around (and lots of pixie dust).

If our experience with single-sign-on applications is anything to go by, I'd lay odds on that layer failing over AD. AD is pretty stable; SSO is pixie-dust, and after the first password change cycle, only it knows the passwords to linked systems. If it were to barf spectacularly, they'd be up a well-known creek.

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Snowden's email provider gave crypto keys to FBI – on paper printouts

Andy Gates

Re: Rand Paul

Obongocare? None of that racist crap here, please.

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500 MEELLION PCs still run Windows XP. How did we get here?

Andy Gates

Re: But slowly – over time @Kunari

I'm pretty sure Microsoft are in a cycle like Star Trek movies, with a good one followed by a horrible one followed by a good one.

We're replacing XP with 7 (about 1/4 done, eek) as PCs get replaced in tech refresh; cataloguing apps is herding cats ,the alternative is a pain but reconnaissance-by-fire is usually accurate.

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Sysadmins fail to fix NHS IT snafu, HUNDREDS of appointments cancelled

Andy Gates

Probably not, that would lock everyone out. My guess is the PAS (Patient Admin System - backbone of the whole dealio) interfaces are buggered in a not-easily-fixed way.

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Andy Gates

Re: So...

Atos? Atos would say the system was perfectly healthy even if it was dead.

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Chaos Computer Club: iPhone 5S finger-sniffer COMPROMISED

Andy Gates

Re: How about using your nose?

Even better... there's photos going round of a lady who set it up to use her nipple.

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For PITY'S SAKE, DON'T BUY an iPHONE 5S, begs FSF

Andy Gates

Re: Good point

The point is not that spuds like you and me can audit it.

The point is that boffins we trust can audit it.

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Andy Gates

Re: an instant, convenient large database of fingerprints

Well, you *shouldn't* store the fingerprint. That doesn't mean they don't - think of all the stories of supposedly professional services keeping plaintext passwords. And it doesn't mean the code is well-written - it could easily have a recent_scans cache that is more vulnerable than the identity data proper.

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Andy Gates

Re: Blah blah blah -@AC 14:24

This! So very this. What people say about security and what actually happens aren't the same thing. Imagine:

1: They're plain lying and handing fingerprints to the NSA.

2: They hand a hash to their cloud (and thus the NSA) but it's a really weak one.

3: Their device security is weak and it's easy to get the fingerprints and/or their hashes off the device.

Plain-lying used to be the tinfoil brigade, but as we've seen, the weirdy beardies are kinda turning out to be correct.

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It's the software, stupid: Samsung Galaxy Gear smartwatch bags big apps

Andy Gates

Re: I must be too old

Tethered = sadness and fail. Remember the early Nokia 700 web tablet thingy? Had to be thethered for connectivity outside wifi, which was a deliberate design choice, and as soon as the iphone came out it shriveled and died. Or the hilarity with Blackberry's tablet mail that had to be tethered to the phone at first?

Tethering might increase functionality. It definitely increases hassle and things to fail.

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NSA: NOBODY could stop Snowden – he was A SYSADMIN

Andy Gates

Re: In response

But then how could they enter their Password1 ?

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Nissan promises to sell self-driving cars by 2020

Andy Gates
FAIL

Re: @ Paul J Turner (was: The sanity test will begin-)

Dunning-Kruger strikes in the assumption that these sorts of emergency avoidance maneuvers haven't been gamed out and tested.

Give me a system with better reflexes than me, every day.

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