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* Posts by gerryg

457 posts • joined 19 Aug 2009

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All ABOARD! Furious Facebook bus drivers join Teamsters union

gerryg

Strawbs

For those that didn't get the musical reference in the sub-heading, here it is

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Webcam hacker pervs in MASS HOME INVASION

gerryg
Facepalm

Obligatory xkcd reference

The story on the BBC website repeats the usual tosh about what constitutes a strong password. I don't understand why these "experts" don't look at xkcd for real advice.

As it says there "Through 20 years of effort, we've successfully trained everyone to use passwords that are hard for humans to remember, but easy for computers to guess"

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Sailfish OS tablet is GO: Fans stuff cash into Jolla's cap in hand

gerryg

nice software, shame about the hardware

I really want to like Jolla and kickstarted the phone.

The interface is not handed, so for lefties such as me, that's good. The software is very pretty, but not sure it's as open as advertised (show me the source code and I'll recant)

The other half was an idea in search of a reason, ambience (a colour my mood on my phone feature) is probably best left to those who have "had their colours done".

The real problem is that you didn't get much hardware for your money. It sort of reminds me of the Meriden workers cooperative that tried to keep Triumph motorcycles alive. My heart wanted to buy one but my head said BMW for this reason or Kawasaki for that reason.

Obviously a lot of people disagree with me and I wish Jolla well (my much replaced Nokia 5800 only recently abandoned is still a great phone) but a Nexus 7 however mundane is still a safer bet.

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UK digi exclusion: Poor families without internet access could 'miss out' on child tax credit

gerryg

Just a thought

When everyone has finished working out the ways this won't work, the requirement to do stuff on line might provide a reason to keep libraries open.

And while we can talk about a "Tory-led" coalition, those Labour party supporters that want to use any stick to beat the drum should remember the stick (doing it all online) was fashioned by the previous Labour-led government.

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So You Think You Can Conduct Original Research?

gerryg

For the graduation ceremony...

She will need one of these

The comments are priceless.

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Pay-by-bonk 'glitch' means cards can go kaching-for-crims

gerryg

Who knew pay by bonk was insecure? It's bonkers, I tell you

No PIN, no need to prove the card is yours, etc.

So the crims are going to steal money from your credit card company (not you, obviously, what with the transaction being fraudulent n'all) but how are they going to hang on to it? Unidentified?

I understand cloning and buying a Porsche - the crims convert to goods and then sell them on. Good luck with that one. But this requires them to get the cash out of the system which takes time. For example, my credit card company, if not them all is fairly tuned up to weird transactions in which case I get an SMS inviting me to confirm.

While I think about it, the last time I tried to pay by bonk in a supermarket without removing the card from my opened wallet, the terminal got confused by the card in the other half of my wallet. When I pay by bonk on London Transport (tube or bus) the system is less sensitive but does require a firm hand, as it were.

So I'd like to know the physical circumstances in which this could work.

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Microsoft opens Office 365 to devs with APIs, SDKs

gerryg

Any WordPerfect developers...

...care to give us a history lesson?

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Amazon sells Fire Phone in UK ... on CONTRACT

gerryg

It's probably fatal to say this here but...

...for those of us that actually use Amazon, this is old news.

It's been on their website landing page for some time.

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Microsoft discovers long-lost phone division down back of sofa

gerryg

Don't own "Nokia" dropping "Lumia"

Not sure I understand this. So Microsoft have sufficient confidence in the brand value of "Microsoft" phones - what has changed?

If nothing has changed:

- why did they buy the phone division in the first place?

or

- why are they dropping the brand value of Lumia?

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SCREW YOU, EU: BBC rolls out Right To Remember as Google deletes links

gerryg

Don't often find myself praising the BBC

However, on this occasion, they're doing the right thing. Google seem to be vulnerable/defending themselves from disgruntled competitors but it seems to me that the right to be forgotten is nonsensical. The example cited by the BBC themselves is a case in point.

As the crims themselves say (apparently) if you can't stand the time don't do the crime.

If you do something that attracts public attention you didn't do it in private. No doubt there are counter examples (e.g., Max Mosley might have interesting tastes but he was indulging in private and he was stitched up) but English Law at least, is based on remedies not rights.

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EU blesses $19bn Facebook-Whatsapp marriage

gerryg

Facebook? whatsapp?

face palm, who cares?

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UK reforms on private copying and parody come into force

gerryg
Facepalm

fair use

"UK Music has claimed that the reforms will cost musicians £58 million a year in lost revenues."

Just quoting but is there a provision for self-parody? If not will UK Music be suing itself?

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DARPA joins math-secured microkernel race

gerryg

micro v macro

Has the discussion on reliable OSes moved on from Tanenbaum-Torvalds debate?

For me it seems that it's all about risk - you throw it over the fence and hope it doesn't come back to bite you (micro) or you attempt to contain it and avoid getting bitten (macro). Neither approach eliminates the problem

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DVLA website GOES TITSUP on day paper car tax discs retire

gerryg

learning from history (not)

In 2011 one of those think tanks published a study for digital government "System+Error" lots of hoopla and government support at the time

In "making the case for change" the report begins by highlighting online vehicle road tax as an example of successful IT. Unfortunately on the day the study was published the DVLA site was "down for essential maintenance" screenshot for posterity.

More here

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Crouching tiger, FAST ASLEEP dragon: Smugglers can't shift iPhone 6s

gerryg

belatedly - may I ...

... compliment you on yet another great headline.

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Shellshock: 'Larger scale attack' on its way, warn securo-bods

gerryg

Trend Micro...

...appears to be some kind of Microsoft shop

just saying

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Super Cali so litigious, Uber is the focus. Even German judges say it's something quite atrocious

gerryg

Re: Supercaliawesomeheadline

If you know the notes to sing, you can sing most anything

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Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed

gerryg

Re: Why not

pay your taxes first. Until that point we don't care Apple

FTFY

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What TODO with open source: Google, Facebook and Twitter launch collab project

gerryg

Re: Strange

And there was me thinking that Google had been funding open source projects for years, without seeking anything specific in return.

It's not clear to me that the Linux kernel, or X, KDE, Gnome, Libre Office (list continues on p93) are in need of TODO.

Let's not forget that Facebook and Twitter also contribute to improving open source infrastructure. Possibly there are niche projects that might benefit. However, TBH, this feels like an initiative in search of a reason.

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In a spin: Samsung accuses LG exec of washing machine SABOTAGE

gerryg

how will LG's spinners present this?

Or will they just hang the execs out to dry?

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Slough isn't fit for humans now, says Amazon. We're going to Shoreditch

gerryg

Re: Sweetners

You do understand that raising tax is a power largely retained by government not the Mayor of London?

Can you identify the scheme here?

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gerryg

Re: Bigger Losses

You actually have to pay the rent.

So while Amazon will be able to deduct it from their earnings they will only save the %age rate of corporation tax - JUST like every other company.

Unless you are aware of some cunning asset stripping plan, in which case you are either in tax planning or should consider a career change.

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BONEHEAD FANBOIS encamp outside Apple Stores

gerryg

The next Apple product I own

Will be my first, however, I do have a sneaking regard for a company that has its client group begging to buy an as yet unidentified product.

Reminds me of the flag seller sketch

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Finally, a USEFUL smart device: Intel boffins cook up gyro-magneto-'puter bike helmet

gerryg

Cycle helmets need ventilation slots

As with bikinis the less you get the more you pay.

From the photograph it all looks pretty solid (unlike motorcycle crash helmets, they don't protect your head from anything really serious) which would make it fairly uncomfortable for anyone travelling so far or so fast as to actually benefit from wearing it.

Solve that and it looks interesting.

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Multi-billion pound UK.gov tech framework awarded to 33 suppliers

gerryg

And how much of this is from open source providers?

And not Microsoft Windows based?

c.f: UK government plans switch from Microsoft Office to open source

But luckily UK government officially adopts Open Document Format

However, as El Reg predicted: UK.gov's Open Source switch WON'T get rid of Microsoft, y'know

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TROLL SLAYER Google grabs $1.3 MEEELLION in patent counter-suit

gerryg

Re: Google are no angels ..

Google are a profit maximising enterprise just like many organisations.

However, they appear to want to win by open competition and do quite a lot to make life easier for others that fancy their chances in open competition, for example Google shields open source cloud tech from patent trolls" versus "Really? Apple's lawsuit against Google is REVIVED"

Is Google my friend? Who knows. Luckily they seem to be my enemy's enemy.

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Racing Post escapes ICO fine after leaking info of 677K punters

gerryg

neigh, lad

why look a gift horse in the mouth?

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IBM: OK, Watson, you've won Jeopardy. Now, CURE CANCER

gerryg

Everything we know is wrong

"A highly influential paper by Dr John Ioannidis at Stanford University called "Why most published research findings are false" argues that fewer than half of scientific papers can be believed, and that the hotter a scientific field (with more scientific teams involved), the less likely the research findings are to be true. He even showed that of the 49 most highly cited medical papers, only 34 had been retested and of them 41 per cent had been convincingly shown to be wrong. And yet they were still being cited."

BBC Radio 4 listen again

Then there's Retraction Watch

See their FAQ So why write a blog on retractions?

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The police are WRONG: Watching YouTube videos is NOT illegal

gerryg

Re: They've got you...

There's interesting case law about this. For example Knuller v DPP (1973) HL

There exists a common law conspiracy to corrupt public morals and outrage public decency.

D published a magazine containing advertisements for homosexual acts amongst consenting adults.

Held:

Conspiracy to corrupt public morals ... really means to corrupt the morals of such members of the public as may be influenced by the matter published' by D, with 'corrupt' being synonymous with 'deprave' or amounting to 'conduct which a jury might find to be destructive of the very fabric of).

Regarding the offence of outraging public decency: 'the substantive offence ... must be committed in public', i.e. before more than one person. "'Outraging public decency" goes considerably beyond offending the susceptibilities of, or even shocking, reasonable people'.

Obiter... it's based on Shaw v DPP which was quite an interesting and relatively famous case as he had sought clarification from plod as to what would be ok before he published.

On the other hand some argue (pdf) this is contrary to Section 7 ECHR.

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Claim: Microsoft Alt-F4'd Chilean government open-source install bid

gerryg

Chile borders on...

...Peru.

So naturally Microsoft is pre-empting another nightmare.

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Go on, inhale our G-Cloud via 'Digital Marketplace' – UK.gov

gerryg

better value for money...

Does anyone actually know what "better value for money" actually means? Until then a requirement to "comply unless" is vacuous.

Actually, "value for money" is part of the boiler-plate in the topsy-turvy world of the rules of appointing Departmental Accounting Officers; the ones who have to report to HM Treasury on how the money has been spent.

Imagine having an accounting officer who did not have to achieve value for money? But we need to know what they value before we know what is better.

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Tricked by satire? Get all your news from Facebook? You're in luck, dummy

gerryg

no it isn't

<irony>

<funny>this is a joke</funny>

</irony>

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Factory-fresh delivery: Get your OpenSUSE fix daily

gerryg

Re: So....

"For similar reasons, Novell's dalliance with MS a few years ago may have done them no favours"

With whom?

Paying customers looking for interoperability?

Or those ranting from the sidelines who didn't notice it was Novell that stepped up and spent seven years in a lawsuit defending the Linux kernel from an MS and Sun funded attack.

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UK government officially adopts Open Document Format

gerryg

never thought it would happen, hoping it finally has

I want to congratulate them, but I'm several times bitten, now shy.

However, the word "must" in the official guidance is particularly encouraging.

Let's hope...

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Are you broke? Good with electronics? Build a better AC/DC box, get back in black with $1m

gerryg

Re: But Who gets the patent.

For the hard of reading the answer is in the penultimate paragraph:

"All intellectual property for the winning designs will remain with the inventors."

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Fujitsu and Capgemini's giga-quid HMRC lashup given drubbing by govt auditors

gerryg

let's remember some history

2007 the accountants: HMRC's 10-year IT contract balloons to £8.5 billion

2012 the techies If HMRC’s experience is anything to go by, outsourcing can, in the long-term, at least triple an organisation’s IT costs.

Francis Maude failed to do anything about it but luckily a Parliamentary Select Committee has noticed so who knows what might happen next

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Labour vows: We'll pause one-dole-to-rule-them-all for drastic fix-up if elected in 2015

gerryg

Re: so how are you therefore entitled to compensation?

"...is a shocking abuse of process, and one which may well be found to be unlawful, when reviewed against the UKs undertakings to the European Convention on Human Rights..."

You are just grandstanding. Parliament is sovereign and ultimately makes the law. Democracy changes Parliaments.

If something has got out of control then retrospective legislation is used. It's not new, albeit rare. It has been used to undermine aggressive tax avoidance schemes

Come back and condemn that and then I'll listen to you about welfare reform

By the way from the article "The judge also pointed out that retrospective legislation was not prohibited by human rights law, although there is a strong presumption against it"

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Google spaffs $50 MILLION on 'get girls coding' campaign

gerryg

Re: Here's what feminists do when men are encouraged to go into female-dominated fields

see also The XX Factor

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gerryg

Speaking in Tech: Electronic data and the law – how compelling is an email as proof?

gerryg
Boffin

validity of an email

I thought I'd point you to the Law Commission report (pdf) to save a lot of time.

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Netflix FREEZES prices for existing UK users to stop them quitting vid-streaming service

gerryg

well...

...I succumbed in order to watch the final series of Breaking Bad after crashing the box set 1-5: sad, I know.

Got a month free trial (actually wasn't expecting that, felt faintly guilty). Yes they asked for my c/card details. I cancelled after watching BB6 free; it was extraordinarily easy.

Received a polite email regretting me leaving reminding me (in terms) that I had approximately 20 days left and I should feel free to indulge.

Perfect marketing. Netflix will be my supplier of choice should I ever subscribe to a streaming service

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BBC hacks – tweet the crap out of the news, cries tech-dazzled Trust

gerryg

Re: This:

"Plus the world service is still a great service"

Perhaps not universally known BBC WS is/was a window out to the world (funnily enough...) and used to be funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

It is/was remarkably high quality - e.g., IMHO, best election coverage in 2010, thoughtful and without ranty point scoring politicians shouting over each other.

Now it's funded out of the licence fee - I hope but don't hold out much hope that it will stay as good. Already there is increased programme sharing with R4

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Privateers race to capture forgotten NASA space probe using crowdsourced cash

gerryg

history repeating itself

I seem to recall another government project in which all the technology was junked and it was only rescued when those involved came out of retirement and rescued stuff they'd stashed away

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Bendy or barmy: Why your next TV will be curved

gerryg

what is it that people are watching, that needs this level of tech?

I recently watched Waterloo Bridge using my DVD player; the one Vivian Leigh thought was her best film. B&W, monaural sound, probably fairly rubbish picture definition. A truly gripping film. I think it had something to do with the screenplay and the quality of the acting, but I might be wrong.

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Judge strikes down Apple attempt to bar Samsung's 'untrue' patent comments

gerryg

Re: I read this as...

I was reminded of a comment by the late John Mortimer QC to the effect that he preferred having to defend murderers rather than act in divorce. With the former, once the deed had been done there was a sense of finality. With the latter he'd get a ranty phone call at any hour of the night along the lines of "do something, he's only gone and taken the toaster"

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No, Minister. You CAN'T de-Kindle your eBooks!

gerryg

Re: Unconstitutional

@Anonymous Coward - While I'm not sure which point of mine you are riposting, if you dig even deeper still you'll find that all draft legislation is scrutinised for constitutional implications. So yes you're right, all statute law forms part of the constitution, but only in the sense that they're not making it up as they go along.

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gerryg

Re: Unconstitutional

"Is there really legislation that says anything written down in a contract overrides all other laws?"

It's actually the complete opposite: contract law is essentially common law, non-statute. Its structure has been sorted out through legal dispute over time.

Legislation is used to trim the enforceability of a contract

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gerryg

Re: Unconstitutional

I think you'll find you are making it up as you go along - so here's A Very Short Introduction to the British Constitution.

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iFixit boss: Apple has 'done everything it can to put repair guys out of business'

gerryg

I've used iFixit - they're amazing

Friend's son's Apple laptop - dead, obviously a power supply problem, couldn't swap battery as short term measure with his sister's Apple laptop as they were not interchangeable (natch).

Apple "genius" - "it needs a new logic board £600" (about 10p less than a new laptop) - iFixit second user dc conditioning thingy - about $29 IIRC and $10 IIRC air freight - arrived three days later. With aid of iFixit guide - about 90 minutes work

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Blighty goes retro with 12-sided pound coin

gerryg

I see your "four yorkshiremen"...

...and raise you a Daily Mash

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