* Posts by fixit_f

246 posts • joined 15 May 2007

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systemd row ends with Debian getting forked

fixit_f

Re: This is gold

"How frequently do you boot (or change the config) of production Linux servers?"

Fair point, but the assumption here of course IS that you're running it on a server. What about people like me who run linux on home desktops and netbooks which are started and stopped all of the time? Suspend support in LINUX can still be a bit flaky depending on your hardware configuration so many prefer to shut down and restart entirely.

So improved boot speed into your window manager of choice is a feature that would be very much appreciated by people like me.

The way this is all being handled sounds pretty churlish though - no wonder so many people have the impression that the open source community is one big "Judean People's front / People's front of Judea" pointless infighting fest.

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Could YOU identify these 10 cool vintage mobile phones?

fixit_f

Maybe I'm old

But none of these are what I'd call "Vintage"

Now my first phone - that's what I call vintage

http://www.imei.info/phonedatabase/7632-ericsson-gh198/

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Routine WHAT NOW? Bank of England’s CHAPS payment system goes TITSUP

fixit_f

Not a huge issue

Sounds like all payments will be made today and they're extending the late clearing cutoff for delayed payments

http://www.chapsco.co.uk/media/press_releases/-/page/3143/

Just means that estate agents and conveyancers might have to work a bit later so those house keys can still get handed over!

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Siri ... why is this semi headed RIGHT AT ME? Phone apps distracting as ever – new study

fixit_f

SEMI lols

"Semi" means something different in the uk - especially when it's headed right at you.

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CNN 'tech analyst' on NAKED CELEBS: WHO IS this mystery '4chan' PERSON?

fixit_f

Re: I AM 4CHAN!

I'm Brian - and so's my wife

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The Register Monopoly Pubcrawl Mobile Map: VODAFONE VICTOR in LONDON

fixit_f

Re: Like.. but....

It's just a real challenge to deliver a mobile data connection to a train. You're inside a big metal box thing, running directly over or under high voltage wires which cause interference, and you're often down in dug out railway cuttings or other lower bits of land. Patchy coverage is IMHO probably reasonable under those circumstances.

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fixit_f

I find this result very, very surprising

Your test methodology looks very comprehensive, my experience is obviously completely anecdotal and unscientific. I live in outer SE London, work in the city and generally "get around a bit" and unless Vodafone have significantly upped their game in the six months or so since I ditched them for 3 those results are the exact opposite of what I found with Voda - I found their 3G data and voice coverage to be truly AWFUL, on a variety of different handsets.

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Trying to sell your house? It'd better have KILLER mobile coverage

fixit_f

Re: femotocells

Great in theory. However, the one that 3 have supplied me is a crock of poo, it cuts out all of the time and needs to be reset.

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HP settles suit with popstar Chubby Checker over todger tester app

fixit_f

According to the Guardian's version....

His spokesman was called "Willie Gary"

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White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!

fixit_f

Re: Odd

Not all IT people are graduates. Particularly the old school ones.

Or there are lots of other people who have migrated over from other things when they realised that their degrees were useless. I'm a dev, but my actual degree was philosophy which vocationally speaking is about as much use as an ashtray on a motorbike.

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Computing student jailed after failing to hand over crypto keys

fixit_f

Silly sod

It's not just the several months of his life in prison he's chucked away, there's no way he'll get a responsible job in a computer related area after this!

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Brit bank Barclays rolls out voice recog for telephone banking

fixit_f

Re: Which system will Barclays run this on?

It's true, Barclays are well known in the financial IT sector for being about the worst, even in a very conservative "if it works don't fix it" area of the industry. They have many legacy systems based around 1970's mainframe technologies, and their project failure rate is very high when it comes to upgrading them. I know many people on their contractor gravy train there who haven't got anything worthwhile achieved for years. So hopefully they've outsourced this particular implementation to somebody with any clue what they're doing as internally they're pretty third rate....

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Rubber-glove time: Italy to probe TripAdvisor over 'fake reviews'

fixit_f

http://tripadvisaargh.tumblr.com/

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Scientists warn of FOUR-FOOT sea level rise from GLACIER melt

fixit_f

Metres or feet?

The Guardian reckons 4 metres not feet. Who is right?

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/may/12/western-antarctic-ice-sheet-collapse-has-already-begun-scientists-warn

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Report: Climate change has already hit USA - and time is RUNNING OUT

fixit_f

Re: @Phil.T.Tipp Marvin would love this news

That's a fair point a/c and you make it well. Nobody is talking about litigation though, however perhaps there is increasingly a place for more voluntarily responsible behaviour (in first OR third world economies) amongst couples who want large families. People have a right to produce children and the idea of capping it is always an emotive subject, however most scientists and sociologists agree that significant population increase at this point is unlikely to benefit anyone unless we very quickly find ways to consume much less.

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fixit_f

@Phil.T.Tipp Re: Marvin would love this news

"Oh really? I think you'll find it's Third World, not Global Population which is on the increase."

This is obviously true in terms of numbers, one thing to remember though is that a first world child consumes many times more energy/resources than a third world child in their lifetime - so there's a strong argument that we in first world countries are equally obligated to reduce the number of children we are having as one less person here has a far greater impact.

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Google forges a Silver bullet for Android, aims it at Samsung's heart

fixit_f

While a lot of this sounds bad from a competition perspective.....

...manufacturers and operators have only themselves to blame. Vanilla android works very nicely, most of the "customisations" and UI tweaks that people like HTC and Samsung (and also, don't forget, individual network operators) are adding are implemented badly - annoying and gimmicky at best, battery/storage sapping at worst. Additionally, as mentioned in the article, the customisations need to be tweaked and tested with every new release which slows getting them out of the door. Google will try to sell this as an attempt to make android "cleaner" and a lot of people will swallow this viewpoint - even though (this being Google) it's blatantly a piece of dick swinging aimed at getting control of the platform and the harvested user data back.

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Ancient telly, check. Sonos sound system, check. OMG WOAH

fixit_f

Re: Weird cabling

Same here - optical cable into a £150 Denon amp and a £200 pair of Dali Zensor 1's, it's only stereo but sounds absolutely gorgeous as far as I'm concerned. I haven't heard one, obviously, but I really don't see how this little unit would compete.

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What the world really needs: A telescopic SELFIE STICK

fixit_f

Re: Not actually a new idea

Agree completely. I've had one for years for my Go-Pro, and I've used it for kite surfing, snorkelling and snowboarding. Like you say it's good for directing your camera into nooks and crannies, and if I've been guilty of snapping the odd pic/video of myself (which I've been doing since long before it was called a "selfie" therefore I refuse to call it one) when I'm in a happy place with a big smile on my face then so bloody what - it cheers me up to look at those pictures during the many times when I'm in a less happy place. Miserable sods, now I can never use my camera on a stick again as people like you lot will judge me "self obsessed" or something!

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Volunteers slam plans to turn Bletchley Park into 'geeky Disneyland'

fixit_f

Re: Whilst I want Bletchley to keep going

Couldn't agree more - have you been to the Science museum in London recently? It's all "interactive exhibits" and touch screens now and it seems they want to take Bletchley Park down that same path. I've been twice, and the first time I was fortunate enough to spend a good ten minutes chatting with Tony Sale which was just an amazing experience. He told me all about how when he was building the colossus replica he would get tipped off about old analogue telephone exchanges being decommissioned, and he and his mates would turn up there and climb into the skips out the back to scavenge rare GPO parts. Speaking to people like Tony was the whole appeal of the place to me, and there were plenty like me who visited the place from far and wide exactly because they'd heard it was the opposite of most museums - I initially found out about it from a great book called "Bollocks to Alton Towers" which is all about the theme of finding quirky British attractions. If it becomes sanitised, it just becomes another crappy modern museum, albeit one in the middle of bloody nowhere well off the tourist trail with a very limited audience. Welcome though the lottery funding is for much needed restoration of buildings, bringing in this consulti-twunt to make these changes sounds like a recipe for disaster and something really should be done before it's too late and he's alienated the very small pool of knowledgeable people who bring the place to life.

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NatWest 'spam' email cockup got me slapped with late payment fee, says angry Reg reader

fixit_f
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Re: more lessons

The bloke said:

“The fee itself was a comparatively minor annoyance, but irritating nonetheless as I normally pay off my credit card shortly after receiving the reminder from the online banking system. The real annoyance was NatWest's refusal to deal with the problem.”

So how exactly is he failing to take responsibility? He's holding his hand up to having cocked up by not paying the bill on time, he simply flagged up the problem and used his personal expertise to suggest a resolution for the benefit of similarly scatterbrained other customers. This is commonly known as "being helpful"

If I was this bloke however one thing I would check would be that they'd not flagged it as a late payment on my credit history - this sort of blemish can look bad on mortgage applications, and he'd have a reasonable justification on this occasion for asking them to remove it.

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MANIC MINERS: Ten Bitcoin generating machines

fixit_f

Re: I'm not some kind of hippy or anything, and it's an interesting experiment....

I see your point - but I'd be hugely delighted not to work if society made that feasible, so the argument is flawed.

All I'm saying is that it seems rather unnecessary to design the infrastructure behind a currency to be so intrinsically labour intensive that all of this number crunching is required just to help set it's value, the quantity in circulation and to manage simple transactions. Yes of course I'm aware that any currency has all kinds of overheads around it's creation, maintenance and things like FX rate discovery, that's what traditional markets do - as it happens I work in finance myself writing systems that do EXACTLY that so you'd think I'd welcome it!

The whole thing seems rather over-engineered.

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fixit_f

I'm not some kind of hippy or anything, and it's an interesting experiment....

But in an age where we're supposed to be getting more efficient and less resource hungry, does the whole mining process not strike anyone else as being an utterly futile waste of electricity and processing power?

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Why 2014 might just be the year of the Google Chromebook

fixit_f

Re: Makes Grim reading For MS Beancounters

Maybe they'll going to need to decouple Office and Visual Studio + the runtimes from it's dependency on Windows to survive. This will be a good thing for those of us who prefer to avoid Windows but like Microsoft's dev environment.

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EE and Voda subscribers to get 2G and 3G INSIDE the Channel Tunnel

fixit_f

Re: How about on UK train lines?!

"Still much of the UK's mainline train routes lack proper coverage, even a consistent ability to make calls along their length."

Yep - and many of us like it that way, no noisy people bellowing into their phones when I'm trying to have a snooze on my way into work :-)

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OMG, Andrex KILLED the PUPPY! Not quilty, exclaim bog roll boys

fixit_f

Re: Online toilet paper lovers?

I bought the very cheap end of supermarket own brand recently - big mistake, actually threw most of it away in the end it was so weak. I will never express any desire to "get in touch with my inner self" again.

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Teary-eyed snappers recall the golden age of film

fixit_f

Canon AE-1

Still got my Dad's one, with a bunch of lenses. It was the first ever shutter speed priority camera I think, it sets the aperture automatically. Should dig it out and see if I can still take photos with it before it becomes completely impossible to get film developed anymore......

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DEATH-PROOF your old XP netbook: 5 OSes to bring it back to life

fixit_f

Re: Linux mint xfce with Mate 32 bit

"As for being cool, i would have thought that being the only penguin in the class with a machine that can do everything the others can do would be too cool to touch ......"

You have to be joking, right? Most kids are idiots, the only cool thing to have will be an iPad, or at worst an android tablet. The rest of the class will all be downloading the latest flavour of the month game off the app store, and the kid with the LINUX netbook will be the one that can't participate. Pariah status will follow. When I was a kid I was the only one in class with an IBM PC at home, everyone else had consoles. Now while I owe my working life to what I learned from that ancient XT clone (rather than spending my time playing starwing and streetfighter 2) and long term it worked out well for me, I can assure you that at the time it was in no way "cool" to have something different to what everyone else had. Kids are very much of the pack mentality, and at that age "different" is bad - not having an iPad screams "poor kid".

I'm not saying any of this is right, it's just how kids operate. Well that's how I remember it all anyway :-)

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Why Microsoft absolutely DOESN'T need its own Steve Jobs

fixit_f

Re: A fine line between Vision and Arrogance

"How the fuck am I supposed to know that?"

I have RSI so I use keyboard shortcuts a lot, but I thought a lot of them were pretty common knowledge. Alt-F4 is one of the basics I thought, it's up there with alt-space or alt-tab. Everyone knows that closes a window, consistently, on most window managers - don't they?!

Let's have a poll - upvote = "I knew alt-f4 did that", downvote = "I didn't know"

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Barclays Online OFFLINE: UK bank site, mobile app go titsup for the evening

fixit_f

Why would you have to leave your shopping?

This is online servicing only, right? Or is it some kind of funky NFC payment app on a phone? In which case you'd have thought they'd still be carrying a debit card?

I love the way that it's inconcievable now to be disconnected from this stuff. Not all that long ago, before ATMs, you had to plan ahead and visit a bank on Friday to get enough cash out to see you through the weekend! Technology is great but some people don't have any kind of backup plan when it goes wrong.

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The micro YOU used in school: The story of the Research Machines 380Z

fixit_f

Re: Nimbuseses

"Then by the mid 90s, my secondary school which had some sort of weird BNC network of 386 Nimbuses, which ran an RM login programme to boot Windows 3.0 off a central server. Incredibly slow."

We had exactly the same - I remember the slowness, the teacher used to make us login to windows 3 in batches so as not to bring it all grinding to a halt. If I remember rightly the nimbuses didn't have hard disks and we had to save our work onto floppies This must have been a standard setup, what sort of network would it have been?

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Another DEVASTATING Chelyabinsk METEOR STRIKE: '7x as likely' as thought

fixit_f

Re: More money, please

I'm with him, tongue in cheek or not. We're a selfish, destructive, self important and pointless race that deserved to have been wiped out a long time ago - the planet would be in a vastly better state if we had been. Bring on a massive asteroid - just as soon as I've finished consuming and ruining and shuffled off this mortal coil.

That defeatist enough for you?

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fixit_f

@Grogan

My thoughts exactly - people only started getting scared of this when they made a few films about it! The dinosaurs may have had an issue with something large hitting earth, but we've been here thousands and thousands of years and we're still here by the looks of it. So probability tells us that the chances of it happening anytime soon are remote, right?

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BBC's Clangers returns in £5m 'New Age' remake

fixit_f

Why can't they write some new programmes?

I've only just got over the crappy new CGI Smurfs, now they want to have CGI clangers?

I think the day the tide was turned was when they remade the Italian Job - after that, nothing was ever sacred again.

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Island-hopping Beardy Branson: I'm dodging rain, not taxes

fixit_f

Seems reasonable

http://www.thedailymash.co.uk/news/celebrity/i-live-on-my-private-island-because-it-is-private-and-an-island-says-branson-2013101480326

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Samsung touching up ROUNDED, CURVY plastic enhanced MODEL

fixit_f

Re: Once upon a time......

I'm pretty careful with my phone but I put some huge scratches in the gorilla glass on my S4 within 2 weeks of owning it thanks to reassurances that it wasn't possible to scratch it - I had a case but didn't bother with a screen protector. So trust me, the unscratchable glass ain't what it's cracked up to be.

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Cisco email accidentally sent to 1000s of employees causes message list MAYHEM

fixit_f

Well Cisco are the network people....

..... and they presumably use their own kit for their infrastructure. Just call it "stress testing" and voila, a happy outcome.

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Official crackdown on Apple fanboi 'shanty town' ahead of London iPhone launch

fixit_f

Jesus Christ

Talk about first world problems!

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Meet the world's one-of-a-kind ENORMO barge-bowling bridge of Falkirk

fixit_f
Thumb Up

@ lauwersw Re: Impressive, but nothing on what the continentals do

Yep - I'm very well travelled on the Belgian and Dutch waterways - been on that one too :-)

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fixit_f

Impressive, but nothing on what the continentals do

I've been on this by small ship quite a few times - it's two massive interconnected bathtubs running one and a half kilometres up and down a hill. Basically an episode of "Last of the Summer Wine" on steroids

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ronqui%C3%A8res_inclined_plane

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British spooks seize tech from Snowden journo's boyfriend at airport

fixit_f

Re: But

Because the guy they arrested is the boyfriend of the Guardian journalist, not somebody directly involved. I'd imagine the journo himself will be communicating only through fairly secure means and will know his rights. However, no matter how careful Snowden and the journo are, there is a good chance that the boyfriend may have been told off the record stuff and committed it to email or instant messenger in an unencrypted form, potentially on an electronic device which doesn't even need a password. While I disagree with what the intelligence services are doing, going after this guy was an obvious move as he's probably not an IT or security specialist and so might well have something they want in an easily accessible form.

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Vodafone flashes bulging package at Brits: New 4G service to rival EE, O2

fixit_f

Oh hurrah

Wait a minute. 4G you say? Is this the same Vodafone that barely gives me ANY mobile data signal, in central London and most other cities and towns I tend to visit, and when it does allow me to connect I get sub GPRS speeds never mind anything approaching even 3G?

They used to be the best network out there but they seem to have a badly overloaded data infrastructure now.

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Intel's homage to Raspberry Pi: The much pricier Minnowboard

fixit_f
FAIL

This kinda reminds me of what happened with netbooks

Take a cheap, basic, well executed idea - and then bolt on more stuff and ruin it.

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Raid millions of bank accounts. New easy-to-use tool. Yours for $5,000

fixit_f
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Re: details please

+1 on this. If I wanted to read vague, wooly journalism on IT stories I'd go to the mainstream media, not a specific tech publication.

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Hey, O2 punters: Kiss goodbye to 4 MEELLION* Openzone hotspots

fixit_f
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Re: Charging? OK

Unfortunately, you're assuming that their mobile data infrastructure is up to the job of replacing a reasonable wifi connection - it's not, the coverage is poor and slow, it's been creaky ever since they got the exclusive deal on the iPhone when it first came out. I gave up and left them about a year ago.

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Aha, I see you switched on your mobile Wi-Fi. YOU FOOL!

fixit_f
Stop

"allowing attacks to breach ultra-secure locations."

What I'd describe as an "ultra-secure" location will generally use 2 factor authentication such as Secure-ID, on top of your network logon credentials. If you're only capturing the 2 factor authentication once then it's only of use until the ID changes, limiting the value of any keylogged/captured credentials you do get hold of. So in real life to most genuinely secure networks this is fairly a limited threat, isn't it? If not, why not (genuinely, educate me) ?

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Vodafone revenues hit as customers in Europe hang onto their cash

fixit_f
Thumb Up

Doesn't bother me

My Voda shares are doing just nicely thanks :-) up nearly 25% in a year.

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Review: Samsung Galaxy S4

fixit_f
Trollface

Re: I've had mine since Friday

Just being realistic - the battery life matches the S2 it replaces. Given that it has a bigger, brighter screen and a massive CPU that's sort of progress, isn't it?

These things do loads more than old feature phones used to do, so it's unfair to compare them really.

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fixit_f
Thumb Up

I've had mine since Friday

1 - the screen is SUPERB

2 - screen touch is light and responsive

3 - no noticeable lag on anything, that processor goes like stink

4 - Battery life of two days definitely achievable with light use

Very happy with it so far. And the UI layer isn't IMHO as bad as the reviewer suggests, having said that there is a lot of bundled crapware to be uninstalled or disabled.

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Librarians: Argos site is top priority to be preserved for future generations

fixit_f
Thumb Up

Argos catalogue is a great example of something that should be archived

I know retail is a bit different now, but look at this 1985 one on Flickr - many happy memories in there for many people "of a certain age"! I used to go through it as a kid mentally picking the things I'd have in a perfect world where I had loads of money.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/38301877@N05/sets/72157619206330728/

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