* Posts by Tom 38

2794 posts • joined 21 Jul 2009

Bible apps are EVIL says John McAfee as he phishes legal sysadmins in real time

Tom 38
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Re: Paranoid?

Yes, some of us still use cheques. They work very well for the purpose they were written for.

Which one: delaying a payment, giving the appearance of having paid or giving a huge wodge of cash for banks to use for three days?

(I once worked as an account clerk for a small company, whenever we paid suppliers I was told to make sure that the cheque was folded smartly in half, because that meant it couldn't be machine processed and so the money stayed an extra day in our account..)

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Uber is killing off iconic black cabs, warns Zac Goldsmith

Tom 38
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Re: Cabs,

I remember one taxi trip in Chicago, going to the airport. In Chicago, the taxi drivers are required by law to always accept card payments - if they can't, I think you get the ride for free. I didn't mention I was paying by card until we got to the airport, at which point the genial polite taxi driver from the past 30 minutes disappeared, and I got called all kinds of names under the sun

He then gets out an old credit card imprinter - the ones with carbon paper! - and scrunches through my debit card. I was going to give him a cash tip, but instead I gave him a literal one - don't call a Welsh man an "English motherfucker", especially when he's hungover.

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Tom 38
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Disruption appears to mean that we ditch a regulated system of drivers that are definitely insured, and knowledgable, for one with far fewer checks, a company syphoning as much cash as it can out of the country, and people working for a pittance.

20 years ago, knowing the best route from Marble Arch to London Bridge was a useful skill. In the days of sat-nav, is it still? People are voting with their wallets to say that it is not.

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'To read this page, please turn off your ad blocker...'

Tom 38
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Re: liability....

All the adverts I see are for stuff I might buy - normally because I bought it yesterday. Yes, Snow and Rock, I would like a new ski jacket - that's why I bought one from you yesterday. Thanks for stalking me all over the internet though.

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Sierra Nevada snow hasn't been this bad since 1500AD

Tom 38
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Re: Reg hack confused by science again

Lucas Silva

Degrees:

Ph.D. Global Environmental Change and Sustainability -

M.Sc. Terrestrial Ecology and Biogeochemistry -

B.Sc Forest Engineering

If he's confused by the claims, is it OK if we are too?

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Vanished global warming may not return – UK Met Office

Tom 38
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Re: Jeremy will save us

Jeremys brother will get the forecast gig (he's bloody good at it)

He claims to be bloody good at it.

WeatherAction exited the Alternative Investment Market in 1999 after reported losses incurred during its time as a public company of £480,000 and its share price dropped from 79p a share to 24p

He's also an absolutist:

... CO2 has never driven, does not drive and never will drive weather or climate. Global warming is over and it never was anything to do with CO2. CO2 is still rising but the world is now cooling and will continue to do so.

So maybe Jezza will restart the coal mines.

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Let's NUKE MARS to make it more like home says Elon Musk

Tom 38
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Re: Ridiculous

Undersea cities are unlikely any time soon. The sea is just too damn corrosive and violent.

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Plods waste millions keeping their arses covered and ears open

Tom 38
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Re: Not this perennial nonsense again

This kind of nonsense gets peddled annually about government procurement.

Firstly, separate police forces procure separately. If you want everyone to get the same price then procure centrally for all police everywhere.

Aha, you don't understand how this game is played. The purpose of releasing this information is to force central procurement.

The article is based on a leaked/FOI data from someone with an axe to grind (Taxpayers Alliance usually) in order to get "people" to say "huh, what a waste of money, we must have central procurement". zomg, what a coincidence.

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Apple's big secret: It's an insurance firm (now with added finance)

Tom 38
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Spot on

This. Exactly this. It's why all my relatives have apple phones and tablets (with barely a mac between them), because - in their minds - it is simple to use and Apple will look after them.

Apple have a reputation* for actually caring about the device after they've sold it to you, which you can't say about most box shifting hardware manufacturers. In effect, they are a software firm that make their money from hardware, and that unique position means they can benefit in ways that Samsung or HTC simply can't.

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BORN to HURL: Man's shoulders are head and shoulders above apes, gorillas, chimps etc

Tom 38
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Re: Only one thing to say

Two Twenty Two for Two after Twenty Two overs here at the Adelaide Oval....

If you like cricket, and haven't heard of Billy Birmingham, well, you're in for a fun night.

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Amazon, GoDaddy get sueball for hosting Ashley Madison data

Tom 38
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Re: Comments still enabled?

The .co.uk should indicate why comments are locked on a story on an on-going UK criminal case with a specific named individual, and why they are not on a story on an on-going US civil case with no named individuals.

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Tom 38
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Re: ELLOHELL

Yeah, wtf is a John Roe. Are they suing all British mathematicians?

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Laminate this: Inside Argos' ongoing online (r)evolution

Tom 38
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Re: Dying

I ent dead yet...

Not buying the "no value added" argument either. They add value by having a large range of items available for instant purchase at online prices on the high street.

Must be a nightmare for you when you want to make a ham and cheese omelette, you have to tour 3 different farms and a butcher...

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Ashley Madison made dumb security mistakes, researcher says

Tom 38
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Re: So...

Where they went wrong (allegedly) is that the passwords and certs are in the source code repository! zomg!

What they should have done is have puppet/chef/cfengine push out dotfiles so that the passwords and certs are in the role user's environment, and the config files pull it out of there.

Of course, your puppet/chef/cfengine configuration must be versioned and change managed, so that gets checked in to a repository too! Repositories all round!

IMO, this just replaces one source of information leakage with another. Any accidental environment leakage can lead to disclosure of secrets, so you have to scrub it. I've no problem with production config files living in a separate repository, just this "stuff everything in the environment and write complex, hard to read and debug config files that pull it out again".

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US trade watchdog to FBI: 'You think the crims won't know about the backdoor too?'

Tom 38
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Re: MODERATOR, please kill this post...

I miss Eadon

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So Quantitative Easing in the eurozone is working, then?

Tom 38
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Re: Grinding axes ...

This may explain why I have never bothered reading the Telegraph since about 1997.

This runs the risk of living within an echo chamber. I think it is useful to read even the diatribes, as long as you can recognise it as such. When I was a student and had much more time on my hands to read, each of us in the house would have obligations to buy a different paper, so we had all the broadsheets and most of the tabloids at hand to (I think we skipped Star and Sport..)

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Attention sysadmins! Here’s how to dodge bullets in a post-Ashley Madison world

Tom 38
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Depends. If your boss is like mine, and views reading the register as part of keeping technically up to date (even these comment board malarky), then you're fine.

If your boss views it as a waste of time, I'd do it at home (or get a different boss).

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Tom 38
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They must be REALLY competent to do MITM attacks on HTTPS. [...] In Europe, this would be "workplace surveillance" and is a no-no 110%.

You don't have to be that competent to install an extra root certificate via AD. As to legality, it would be a no-no except...

when you joined the company you more than likely signed a contract that effectively stated that the company reserves the right to monitor any and all usage of their infrastructure

which means, if the target agrees to your monitoring of their activities before you monitor them, its not illegal.

Don't forget point 5. Anything you do on a company supplied computer or network is fair game.

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HMRC breaches job applicants' privacy in mass email spaff

Tom 38
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Pint

Re: If only they'd hired a script kiddie

Is it difficult or something to have Outlook say "this email has more addressees than your default allows. Are you really sure you want to send it?"

And then when they click "Yes", it pops up a box saying "Well, you're wrong", and schedules you for re-education.

Happy days.

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Want your kids to learn coding? Train the darn teachers first

Tom 38
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Joke

Re: Cameron and Tories: Do this, do that, no money for you.

Actually, it's fcvking fault of Labor and the local counsels.

Everyone always blames the lawyers!

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Stench of confiscated dope overwhelms Catalan cop shop

Tom 38
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Re: Whoa, Dude you're nicked

a plastic bin liner will not hold the smell of Spanish home grown

You need higher quality bags. Standard "plastic bags" are made from low density polyethylene (LDPE), which is sufficient to hold solids/liquids but will happily allow small odour molecules through. You need much sturdier bags made out of Polypropylene, or my personal favourite, Kilner style flip top jars.

Allegedly.

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West's only rare earth mine closes. Yet Chinese monopoly fears are baseless

Tom 38
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Bad luck Estonia

Sang away Russia over 25 years ago, part of NATO for more than 10 years, has an advanced high income economy with high living standards and personal freedoms but still an evil commie pinko when deciding whether their mines are part of the "Western Hemisphere".

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Prognosticator, for one, welcomes our new robot work colleagues

Tom 38
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Re: Wrong paradigm

Simple, you enforce the working time directive.

Dear god. Your solution is to tell me that I cannot go out and earn money above what you have decided I am allowed to earn?

The most obvious example I can think of is doctors. We don't have enough doctors now, and we'd need to double the number of them we have to reduce their required hours by half.

Not just that, but because they are only working 8 hours a week rather than 80, it's taken 50 years instead of 5 to train each one of them.

Guess how many people are going to go off and learn all that doctoring stuff, when they get the same pay as everyone else for their 8 hours work.

Presumably, you've also worked out how to stop every other country in the world from out competing us, or from appropriating all of our vastly underutilised army of poorly paid doctors (qv Cuba).

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Tom 38
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Re: Wrong paradigm

The problem is more that everyone is convinced that the only way to live is by working 9 hours a day, and employers and politicians are more than happy to perpetuate that myth because it's good for short term gains and no one care about the long term consequences. In a more sensible world the more automation there was the less work everyone would have to do

If work (and the reward for work) is spread evenly amongst the population and we all work 8 hours a week, then how do you solve the problem of an individual attempting to maximise their income by working longer?

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Vodafone UK rocks the bloat with demands for vanilla Android

Tom 38
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Its all to do with risk

This announcement has nothing to do with what consumers want, even if they are coincidentally aligned. This is about avoiding the finger of blame in the eventual outcome that someone's unpatched operator branded OS has a huge security hole in it that they have ignored despite Google releasing patches.

By pushing their handsets to be stock android, and not making any operator modifications, anything that goes wrong they can simply say "Not me guv" and point at HTC.

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Shadow minister for Fun calls for Openreach separation

Tom 38
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Re: Back in the real world

Nope, which is why I think that our government should pay for it out of general taxation and provide a backbone which ISPs can pay for access to users.

IP networks are public infrastructure nowadays, we need to invest in them like we would roads or railways. I would argue there would be a larger uptick to GDP by building a national FTTP network than building a fast train to Birmingham.

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Tom 38
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Re: Back in the real world

I think the key point is that we are currently paying for investment (via subscriptions) in to our key internet infrastructure, and what we are getting is a poor investment that is good at helping BT's bottom line.

FTTP is a clear investment in the future - future bandwidth increases can occur by upgrading transceivers and repeaters. FTTC is trying to squeeze absolutely the last bit out of copper cables in order to maximise return for minimal investment, but the efficiency of the investment is poor and will eventually need to be replaced with fibre anyway - we're just pushing the cost down the line.

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Ashley Madison spam starts, as leak linked to first suicide

Tom 38
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Re: "Something positive"

"That last website turned into an almighty cluster-shag of a nightmare for everyone. You're probably just feeling relieved that it hasn't gone rancid for you, yet. But do you fancy another go where we'll get it right this time, honest, feeling lucky?"

A lot of people (not just men) completely lose all sense of intelligence when there is even the off-chance of increasing global genetic diversity, so it might work.

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Spotify now officially even worse than the NSA

Tom 38
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despotify

On the desktop at least, you can work around most of this tracking if you use a despotify based client like Clementine, which certainly isn't passing this information along.

OTOH, they have to put in their T&C the things that they do. Their newest feature is running music, you start running and it plays appropriate beat music for your speed, which obviously requires tracking how fast you are going, which requires logging where you were and how long ago. If you aren't using the running feature, I don't think spotify will be doing that extra work, but because they might (if you ask them to do it!), it has to be in the T&C.

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Why do driverless car makers have this insatiable need for speed?

Tom 38
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Re: Driverless cars do not need to be owned

Automatic gearboxes (historically) break sooner and cost more to repair/replace. It's not necessarily that we require control, we're just cheap enough to not mind changing gears in order to save money.

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Tom 38
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Mushroom

Re: The end of any driving pleasure

make the batteries hot pluggable and a standard size. Then you pull up to a service station, take yours out, pay, pick up a fully chard module, plug in and drive out

If the module is at all chard, don't put it in the car or it might overload!

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French say 'non' to Netflix, reveals entertainment report

Tom 38
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Headmaster

Re: Streaming 'On-demand' vs PVR timeshifting

Fibre to Cabinet internet (I often get over 50Mbps) and P2P can easily handle the bandwidth, that's why Bittorrent, including Popcorn time, are so successful.

ADSL is 20th century junk

FTTC is ADSL. It's both awesome and 20th century junk?

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Amazon UK conditions 'exhausting', claims union

Tom 38
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Re: £2bn, 7000, 5 million square feet.

But of course for tax purposes, Amazon doesn't sell goods in the UK...

Technically this is incorrect now, for the last three months Amazon have been booking sales in the UK as sales in the UK rather than Luxembourg. Apparently they were persuaded this wasn't on....

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Has anyone lost 37 dope plants, Bolton cops nonchalantly ask on Facebook

Tom 38
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Re: Probably the bill themselves.

Probably making sure they weigh enough to be charged with intent to supply.

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Tom 38
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Re: Does plod know?

You'd do that before planting them up in those size pots though.

Or so I've been told.

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So unfair! Teachers know what’s happening on students' fondleslabs

Tom 38
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I can't write well - that's what attracted me to computers in the first place, I was fed up with my work being judged by its legibility rather than its quality.

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Skills crisis? Not for long: More and more UK kids gain STEM quals

Tom 38
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Re: A-Level results

Hmm. Maths doesn't really change that much, so I'm dubious on this. In the late 90s, we prepared for our Maths A levels by doing past papers from the 50s onwards, all were on a par with the modern stuff. The older papers had less "hand holding" (eg, guiding you through the solution by asking intermediate questions), but A level questions don't have too much of that any way.

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Tom 38
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SAS's research with The Tech Partnership suggests there will be approximately 56,000 job opportunities for big data professionals by 2020

Damnit, shouldn't have gone on that diet.

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HTC caught storing fingerprints AS WORLD-READABLE CLEARTEXT

Tom 38
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Re: Broken Implementation

I'm not sure this would work. How does the hash work?

qv acoustic fingerprinting

Acoustic fingerprints are not bitwise fingerprints, which must be sensitive to any small changes in the data. Acoustic fingerprints are more analogous to human fingerprints where small variations that are insignificant to the features the fingerprint uses are tolerated. One can imagine the case of a smeared human fingerprint impression which can accurately be matched to another fingerprint sample in a reference database; acoustic fingerprints work in a similar way.

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Tom 38
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Headmaster

Re: I wonder how many people will be bitten by these biometric shenanigans

I steal your phone from you I know what you look like and I have at least your phone number.

Grammar pedant - is this a threat, or am I supposed to insert the words "If", "then" and "will" in the appropriate places? If the former, slightly concerned about leaving work without first putting on a disguise.

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Get thee behind me, Satanic mills! Robert Owen's Scottish legacy

Tom 38
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Re: Social agenda

Just what are Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, Global Corporates et al waiting on before redistributing all that wealth in order to help create a flatter, more rounded pyramid.

Funny couple of names you've chosen there. Bill Gates has a charitable foundation with $40 billion in endowments (and has pledged to donate the remaining 95% of his wealth on death), to which Warren Buffet has pledged to give 99% of his Berkshire Hathaway shares by or on his death (he's already donated >$10 billion).

A market economy creates some lopsided payoffs to participants. The right endowment of vocal chords, anatomical structure, physical strength, or mental powers can produce enormous piles of claim checks (stocks, bonds, and other forms of capital) on future national output. Proper selection of ancestors similarly can result in lifetime supplies of such tickets upon birth. If zero real investment returns diverted a bit greater portion of the national output from such stockholders to equally worthy and hardworking citizens lacking jackpot-producing talents, it would seem unlikely to pose such an insult to an equitable world as to risk Divine Intervention

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Buffoon in 999 call: 'Cat ate my bacon and I want to press charges'

Tom 38
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Re: Not just meat

I have known 2 cats who steal cheese if given half a chance.

Do they use it in the mouse traps?

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Tom 38
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Joke

Re: Too polite

Ahh, economy sausages - for when its hard to make both ends meat.

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Vive le Act Patriotique: Liberté, égalité, fraternité, pick any two. No, not those

Tom 38
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Joke

Le Charteur des Snoopeurs would allow spies to use International Mobile Subscriber Identity catchers to hoover up telephone data, and access emails and online communications of anyone suspected of being linked to terrorism without a court order.

Hah, so I just need to get some court ordered terrorism, and they won't be able to do JACK to me.

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Are you a Tory-voting IT contractor? Congrats! Osborne is hiking your taxes

Tom 38
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Re: I will be worse off

The article didn't mention that as freelance consultants we don't get sick pay either.

Freelance consultants work for their own companies, so if you are unhappy with the amount of sick pay that you have negotiated with yourself, take your self aside for a quiet drink and talk it through until both you and yourself are content with the perks and remuneration that you get for working for yourself.

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NSPCC: Two nonces nailed by cops every day

Tom 38
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Re: Nonce?

A "nonce" in cryptology is an arbitrary number made up and used once in a particular communication.

I would hope that there are nonces at all levels of government by now, they surely have 2FA...

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HSBC takes Twitter tongue-lashing over failure to offer Apple Pay

Tom 38
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HSBC rather shot themselves in the foot

I'm an HSBC customer, on the morning that Apple Pay launched in the UK they emailed all of us to tell us that Apple Pay was was here...

Coming later in July. A new way to pay with an HSBC debit or credit card using Apple Pay.

Enjoy the benefits of an HSBC debit or credit card using Apple Pay.

Apple Pay will change how you pay with breakthrough contactless payment technology and unique security features built into iPhone 6, Apple Watch, iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3. So you can pay in an easy, secure and private way.

Thank you for your continued loyalty to HSBC.

I guess this was "getting out in front of an issue", by telling everyone you have an issue and waiting for it all to hit the fan

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Hey, Spotify! Why do you internet companies hate competition?

Tom 38
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Re: Oh look...

Apple Music arrives on Android in the Fall, as announced at WWDC.

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Reddit CEO U-turn: Site no longer a bastion of free speech – and stop posting so much hate

Tom 38
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Re: Not really thought about it before.

Thanks for sharing.

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China wants to build a 200km-long undersea tunnel to America

Tom 38
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Headmaster

China has a number of ambitions train projects in the pipeline, including a 270mph maglev from Shanghai airport to the city

Not in the pipeline, it exists and has done for many years. It doesn't get right in to the city, its terminal is about a 15 minute tube ride from Huangpu, but it is super cool. There's a big digital speedometer in the middle of each carriage that ticks up to (when I rode it) 420 km/h. It doesn't even seem like you are going that fast until you look out of the window and see the city just flying by, at which point I started to get a bit freaked out on the banking turns...

If I go back I think I would get a day pass ticket, because just riding it to the airport is too brief - as soon as I got there I wanted to ride it back to the city and then back again, but my plane was waiting :(

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