* Posts by Steve 114

193 posts • joined 8 Jul 2009

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Microsoft won't back down from Windows 10 nagware 'trick'

Steve 114
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Upgrade losses

I've moved several friends to Win10 on purpose (because they won't look after themselves) and not had problems, even on older kit. EXCEPT that the upgrade silently omits a random selection of older programs, that work perfectly well if reinstalled, or at worst - in compatibility mode. Go on, give us a tailored list of what's missing! As a result I can't recommend auto-upgrade to anyone.

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Galileo satnav fleet grows an extra pair

Steve 114
Big Brother

Warning - Galileo is designed to facilitate 'EU'-wide road pricing via compulsory satnav on ALL roads, with charges varying by time-of-day and congestion. Yes, even the lane outside your house. Not fiction, I've seen the working paper. Best vote 'Leave'.

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Airbus to build plane that's even uglier than the A380

Steve 114

Re: Ugly, beautyful or purposeful.

Got the TSR2 tie. But colleagues who'd worked closer on it got given the tie with the red diagonal through it. Must be a collectible now. Today chaps won't even wear ties - truly the end of an era.

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Steve 114

Re: The A380 is not ugly!

Floaty McFloatface?

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Chaps make working 6502 CPU by hand. Because why not?

Steve 114
Happy

Re: Vacuum tube (aka valve)

Our mechanical 'Comptometers' (and a few 'Marchants' for the really expert girls who were qualified to multiply) were noisy on steel desks, so they sat on thick hairy felt pads. When the first big 'electronic' calculators came in, same size, the felt pads were retained by habit, and blocked the ventilation. If you put pies on top at coffee time, they'd be piping hot by lunch. Met a few nice girls that way, who warmed my pies. Down in the PCB shop they had Paxolin ovens which were much better, but only run by blokes.

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Debian farewells Pentium

Steve 114

Re: Time moves on...

My cousins, condemned by 'time' to be over-60, mostly have Pentiums. No way will they go to PCUniverse, pay good money and get terminally confused. XPpos seems to work perfectly well for them, so should we now abandon hope for upgrade to Linix-on-elderly Desktop?

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Linux Mint to go DIY for multimedia

Steve 114

Lifeboat

What I want is a rescue disk that just runs, without installation. So I'll use an old one with codecs (can an expert tell us how to 'slipstream' codecs to a new one?) It's probably a software patent issue, really.

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New Firefox versions will make you activate all new add-ons – except one hacker favourite

Steve 114
FAIL

No hope for the 'BBC', you only pay for them. Just so long as they keep the 'Third Programme' (whatever it's called nowadays), preferably without the self-promoting Ad. slots where they talk over the music.

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Romania suffers Eurovision premature ejection

Steve 114

Lost the Plot

Wherever I go on holiday, there is atmospheric, ethnic, music which is locally popular but not 'pop', sung in local language, and no US-Engrish fakery, with local musical conventions and rythms, typically by girls who are well worth viewing (maybe men too, if that's your thing). That's what EuroVision used to be, when it was interesting, and was about 'songs' not commercial potential. Now it's a waste of space. Wogan's gone too. Cancel.

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Dear Windows, OS X folks: Update Flash now. Or kill it. Killing it works

Steve 114

How can I tell all my cousins to update Flash when Adobe insists on putting random spammy 'offers' on their update site that they ought to untick, but never do? If Adobe want their nasty technology to survive, they should at least develop a reputation for trust.

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Whatever happened to ... Nest?

Steve 114

Re: Software will eat everything... sometimes

Mine's 24 volt signalling, latest controllers 2015, with all the bells and whistles and extra valves the spec permitted. No one in the UK understands how it ought to work, and I've soldered a nice big relay in the 240-volt valve side to get it to do what I want (which it does, now). Try interfacing intelligently with that!

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ExoMars probe narrowly avoids death, still in peril after rocket snafu

Steve 114
Thumb Up

Same technology as for loose horses at the Grand National.

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Microsoft will rest its jackboot on Windows 7, 8.1's throat on new Intel CPUs in 2018 – not 2017

Steve 114
Happy

Re: Planned obsolescence

I've just 'upgraded' a cousin's Win7 to Win10 as a sick joke, carefully deleting 'windows.old'. To my surprise and discomfort it works quite well. Sure, I spent an hour on Classic Shell, making it look like XP, shrinking icons and arrows, SpybotAntiBeacon, killing 'Bing', Cortana, and all the other nonsense. Sure we should worry about Microsoft charging in future - but Win10 does seem at last to be more goof-proof than some. If a third party could one-click-bundle everything needed to make 10 look like XP (with a free file explorer that works), I might take GWX Control Panel off other cousins' machines.

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Food, water, batteries, medical supplies, ammo … and Windows 7 PCs

Steve 114

Re: Linux, still not the way

I don't 'Game', so Linux Mint is entirely satisfactory. Except that it only prints on one of my 3 printers (and then doesn't offer the options available with Windows drivers), and no scanners of any generation work at all. Hardly Linux's fault if mfgrs don't bother much with drivers, and there's probably a kludge if I looked, but... 'work must go on'.

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Building a fanless PC is now realistic. But it still ain't cheap

Steve 114

I wanted to transition my music from a Brennan, which is fanless but a bit glitchy on ripping, to a 'Cocktail' (or whatever they're called now) which has a much better UI but an unobtrusive fan. In practice, the white noise from that, and mystic rumbling from the table it's on, makes quiet music unattractive - I'm planning heat pipes and a radiator instead. Meanwhile it's back to the loyal Brennan.

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Easter Islanders didn't commit 'ecocide' after all, says archaeologist

Steve 114

Re: Incorrect book, and deeper evidence

I have the Diamond book at my bedside, along with a Dawkins or two. I read the former for unscientific annoyance-by-assertion, and the latter for properly-balanced wholly-scientific nightmares. Thanks, guys!

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Triple-murderer prisoner keeps mobile phone in his butt for a week

Steve 114

Nokia was there first

I used to covet a Nokia mobile that looked like an oversize Minox C. Didn't know at the time where they'd probably been holstered.

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Windows 10 pilot rollouts will surge in early 2016, says Gartner

Steve 114

Re: Works for me

After trials, I'd recommend 10 to all uninterested cousins if, and only if, there were a one-click option to make the desktop look exactly like their old 7 (or XP). Sure I can do that with a long session on Teamviewer, but it's not my idea of family fun. (Anyway, they've all got a Linux Mint boot disk now, in case of disasters).

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Remember Netbooks? Windows 10 makes them good again!

Steve 114

Re: Windoze XP

Same story here with an HP netbook (Atom?) I use as a kind of literate multimeter. Win7 Starter (pathetic), shifted to SSD, upgraded seamlessly to Win10, works faster than before. Can't say I like it, but I haven't tweaked it as I need to see what innocently-upgrading cousins are suffering from.

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Health Secretary promises NHS £4.2bn to go 'digital'

Steve 114
FAIL

'Paperless' has always been plain silly. Use IT wisely, but in the chaos of wards and GPs, some things WILL be written on scraps of paper, napkins, chart traces. And everyone (er?) can 'write', whereas not everyone can type, or find the things they want to say on kludgy drop-down menus and disease codes. Ask people how they work, and then decide how to handle reality. Else it's a forever cycle of 'won't happen'.

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That's cute, Germany – China shows the world how fusion is done

Steve 114

Re: Not your enemy

Not since we insisted on destroying their population with opium imports, and attacked their culture with missionaries. Long memories.

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LinkedIn sinkin': $10bn gone in one day as shares plummet 40%

Steve 114

Re: The reckoning will come ..

10 years after retirement and never having been on it, I still get (triple) 'invitations' from youngsters who I know wouldn't want to embarrass themselves. Seems it just raids their address book. Treat as malware, I tell them.

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Why the Sun is setting on the Boeing 747

Steve 114
Pint

Slainte

When Aer Lingus got their first one delivered, they flew it up and down O'Connell Street on St Patrick's Day, several times. I was there and this is not a tall story. What, no Guinness icon?

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Criminal records checks 'unlawful' and 'arbitrary' rules High Court

Steve 114

Re: 'Fess up everybody

The ultimate crime in any business is 'getting caught'. So why employ people who once got caught?

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How to help a user who can't find the Start button or the keyboard?

Steve 114
FAIL

Re: Some people....

Fun joke, but arrogance? Maybe the boss was told there was a 'helpline' for the 'new payments system'? Maybe he rang it to find out how to make a payment without a computer. A German will do nothing unless properly trained, and evidently they'd let him down.

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Hacks rebel after bosses secretly install motion sensors under desks

Steve 114
Coat

Hotdeskers I saw abroad would bag the best seats by windows (or have friends do it) really early, then not sit there as they had more interesting things to do (never-ending 'meetings' in a cosy 'pod'). Some seats were so popular with senior people that nobody else would ever dare to sit there, even when 'owners' were away. Not saying monitoring would help, but notice the use-case. My raincoat's on THAT chair, so leave it alone.

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It's amazing the UK Parliament agreed to track 22bn Brits' car trips. Oh right – it didn't

Steve 114

Lots of cameras round here. Small amount of crime, but if it happens - Plod has more than mugshots to help. 'Nothing the hide, nothing to fear'. Just wait 'til the outlaws nick your stuff, and see whose side you're on.

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Beyond iTunes: XML boffins target sheet music

Steve 114

Lockin

Whaddya bet that the Standard will include 'Rights Management'. Just post an image, and we can cope. In fact, (paid-for) SharpEye will turn it into polyphonic ringtones pronto.

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China wants encryption cracked on demand because ... er, terrorism

Steve 114

Re: ORLY?

In the Darwinian contest of societies, maybe PRC has 'got' something, after the experience of far more bloody centuries than we have had. Baseline orthodoxy is, perhaps, an asset to efficiency. What's the other way? - Mesopotamian Babylon? (for millennia of strife still unending)?

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Windows 10: What's coming in 2016?

Steve 114
Stop

While I was reading all this on 8.1, 'GWX Control Panel's background monitor again warned me that my settings had changed to download upgrades. Disabled of course if I now reboot, but how often is this going to happen?

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Microsoft steps up Windows 10 nagging

Steve 114

Downvotes? he's got a point. I put an SSD in an inadequate HP netbook with a 'starter-something' Windows, and it now works acceptably on Win10, with Classic Shell of course. Even runs the challenging security for the full-install OED (principal use-case for that one). Obviously 'GWX Control Panel' protects all the other machines around here.

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Expert welcomes UK’s digital health recommendations

Steve 114

True to Type

The elephant in the room, or indeed absent from it, is that most patients, doctors, carers and nurses can't type and prefer not to type.

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NZ unfurls proposed new flag

Steve 114

Sew sew

NZ should choose a flag that'e easier to sew than the present one.

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US Navy's newest ship sets sail with Captain James Kirk at the bridge

Steve 114
FAIL

Priorities

When I was at school in the '60s, an 'Old Boy' who'd made it big in the FO came to lecture us on Britain's strategy. He said we wouldn't need a big-ship Navy in fifty years, just fast boats to police the Mediterranean and Channel against mass population movements. Do you think they listened to their own advice? The US, on the other hand, has the Pacific.

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From Zero to hero: Why mini 'puter Oberon should grab Pi's crown

Steve 114

Re: Click-Bait much?

Click bait didn't work for me - screen said 'you need to turn on Java'. Bye bye!

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Russia's blanket phone spying busted Europe's human rights laws

Steve 114

Re: And Russia's response...

And here's hoping Mr Putin will give us an example of how exactly to deal with ECHR rulings which are manifestly contrary to public interest.

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Samsung Gear VR is good. So good 2016 could be year virtual reality finally makes it

Steve 114

Re: Film makers?

Weren't Mystery (mastery, = professional) Plays done on a cart with a proscenium on one side? £D with no goggles required!

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NASA palms off blunder-bot Valkyrie for top US universities to fix

Steve 114

Re: Crap Idea

So don't go there? Maintain momentum and use a robot instead.

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Pause Patch Tuesday downloads, buggy code can kill Outlook

Steve 114
Thumb Up

...and Outlook 2003 seems fine (on some definition of 'fine')

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Read the Economist last weekend? You may have fetched more than just articles (yup, malware)

Steve 114
Thumb Up

Interesting, Comrade

I was looking at a Russian publication (for a picture of wreckage) and almost fell for this one. Killed it instantly, but Malwarebytes was still able to find the residue.

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UK.gov Verify system misses yet another user signup target

Steve 114

Mystery

Just helped 3 people register for SA electronically. Needs 2 letters by post to your home, or 3 if you don't have a UTR, so takes weeks (albeit probably justified by security, not complaining!). We didn't 'shun' any newer system, we just didn't see it. Should I update them? How?

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Windows 10 growth stalls during October

Steve 114
Happy

Re: XP

5 laptops etc in my garage with XP, and sometimes we turn them on. 3 in the house ditto - they won't go away, and can only upgrade to Linux (which houseguests won't use). Win10 is OK, but just looks too different for anyone to bother.

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Think Fortran, assembly language programming is boring and useless? Tell that to the NASA Voyager team

Steve 114
Happy

Re: Where do I sign?

Yes, we had a real woman on our COBOL team. And all the (rather lovely) younger women who punched our 80-column program cards if our fingers were exhausted. The '60s were better than anyone can possibly imagine.

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Steve 114
Thumb Up

Re: Where do I sign?

Why did I ever leave Fortran, Algol, (and Assembly) for COBOL? AhHa, for the money - I remember now.

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Capita given early Order of the Boot from £500m Post Office deal

Steve 114

Blue chip franchise?

In the very earliest days, the 'Royal Mail' franchised stage coaches, and paddle steamers, to provide a reliable SLA or else. When I was young, 'Royal Mail' got printed on the side of airliners who could be trusted (remember when?). What's this 'Post Office'? Time to rethink the whole thing in terms of modern technology and (of course) the imperatives of 'universal service'.

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TalkTalk attack: 'No legal obligation to encrypt customer bank details', says chief

Steve 114
Headmaster

Re: MBA "Qualification"

MBAs merely think they can rule the company without effort. It is PPEs who just know they can rule the universe simply by using their trusted contacts.

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TalkTalk hush-hush on compo for up to 4 million customers after mega cyber attack

Steve 114
Headmaster

But Seriously

Business School case studies examine disasters (we had Singer Sewing Machines - it was that long ago). Now... your name is Baroness Dido - what do you DO? Hindsight is forbidden in your answer, also no paying McKinsey, or doubling salaries for IT grunts. No, very seriously, if YOU want to be a Boss, and even if you didn't bother to clock a PPE between youthful rides, what do you do NOW?

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Future civilisations won't know how the universe formed

Steve 114
Devil

Three Bears

Interesting perception that the 'Goldilocks Zone' is in (observed) time as well as everything else. Now, is that an anthropocentric 'here is where we are' claim, or do we have an objectively special seating plan precisely between the Restauants at the Beginning, and at the End, of the universe? Or is it simply what you must see when you 'are'.

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IT supplier? Got a customer who won't pay? Dob them in to the Insolvency Service

Steve 114
Unhappy

Extended ripoff

So a client who has entered a 'prepack Administration' specifically to avoid paying outstanding debts has the right to insist we go back to work there?

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VW’s case of NOxious emissions: a tale of SMOKE and MIRRORS?

Steve 114

Re: T'was ever thus

The man who used to run 'a major central bank' printworks explained to me, when I was young, how he would quietly make an economy by printing smaller banknotes. And so he did, though he'd never have predicted the disproportionate fall in value since then.

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