326 posts • joined Sunday 27th September 2009 11:36 GMT
Re: @Andrew Jones 2
I'm in the UK so they can data mine my browsing all they like - it's not going to be any use to them for the situation you hypothesise - or at least - one would hope it is a hypothesis - otherwise - it is called "libel" and is a big deal on the internet now-a-days.
Kind of - but -
Imagine a footpath that runs through a house -
an Unencrypted network would be your example with the door unlocked - in fact it's not just unlocked it is off it's hinges - anyone can and will walk straight in and through - if they take anything while they are there - well - that's the problem with unencrypted.
Now an encrypted network has a digital keypad on the front door and only people who know the 26 digit pin code can get into the house, though there are other options, such as knocking and waiting for someone to invite you in (WPS) . Like any house - someone determined enough can probably still get in if they want to - but the average housebreaker probably can't. Now - there is still a chance that stuff will be nicked from the house but it's a lot less likely than if you had no front door at all.
Now - in your example - someone entering someone else's house uninvited, regardless of whether there is a door or not - is called Trespassing and places you on dodgy ground, but robbing someone is definitely an illegal act. Connecting to an unencrypted wireless network (uninvited) is considered to be naughty - but AFAIK it's not actually illegal - since it's sort of fundamental to the way Wireless Networking works.
Now my understanding is that what Google did is even less complicated than that - they didn't actually connect to any wireless networks - they merely captured the radio packets as they drove past - what Google did is essentially no different at all to sticking a microphone on your car roof and driving about the country / world capturing private conversations between people as you drive past - there is no law against it.
Frankly - I don't care if they are telling the truth or not -
I get provided with decent services that help me with my digital and my real life.
Streetview is a godsend and genuinely useful beyond the "oh look there is my house" novelty.
Android despite it's bugs is an absolute joy and being able to do such simple things like VPN into my home network and check the CCTV or fix an error with the weather station is something that always make me smile.
Chrome sync despite it's obvious security worries is still something that I enjoy - knowing that I can for instance visit Netweather on my mobile and check the lighting radar without logging in because I have already logged in on my laptop.
Google Mail is still infinitely better than Yahoo who I used to use.
Google Maps was and still is one of the most amazing products ever to come out of Google and still something that I use *at least* weekly.
As for advertising - I still hold the opinion that if I have to see adverts as I go about the internet - I would still prefer to see adverts about stuff I am actually interested in - rather than generic stuff.
So yes - there might well be plenty of reasons to distrust Google - but I'm not going to stop using them anytime soon......
As for people bringing up the WiFi thing again - sorry but I still hold the opinion that if people were stupid enough to broadcast unencrypted - that is their own stupid fault.
and less than a month after this becomes "law" - we will start to see stories trickling out about how faulty firmware leads to spurious calls to emergency services even though the car hasn't been involved in any accident...... Further up here - people have been mentioning calls that do this already using existing bluetooth phones - surely this is a much better way of implementing this - if you want the service - pair your phone to the car - if you don't want it - don't pair it.
Re: What you post can vanish at any time...
Geocities is apparently coming back.... or at least..... the "content" is.....
(Note - your definition of content may vary)
Well.... at least there was ONE interesting announcement today - "Lock Activation" sounds like it might help with phone thefts but I guess we will see.
By the way I was incredibly amused to see the Lock screen now unlocks by sliding up from the bottom instead of sliding "an image along a predefined path".
Every other "feature" is already available in other operating systems.
The "Android fragmentation" card was trotted out again today - they seem to of missed the memo about the new way to update Android - additionally - that's the iPhone 3GS and iPad 1 out of the picture for iOS7. While in percentages it's probably not a huge number of devices - it is still fragmentation - fragmentation still exists on iOS no matter how much Apple attempt to sweep it under the carpet.
I assume he means protecting the children from being seen - in which case - he will be trying to get eyeballs banned soon. It's funny when you think about it - you can always tell that someone has no real argument - when they cling to the current buzzwords of the day - currently that is "think of the children" and "think of the environment"
I say bravo to Google for setting a clear example as to how easy it will be for the rest of the world to simply say - no recording devices here thanks. I mean presumably Google have not previously allowed recording devices into their shareholder meetings - despite the fact - shock horror - they produce Android - a mobile phone operating system that allows said phone to take pictures. Why anyone would expect that just because they bring the world Glass they would suddenly change the rules about recording devices..... If they had said - you can bring smart phones and recording devices EXCEPT Glass - they guy might have had a point - but.... "think of the children! won't someone think of the poor children"
And.... it's a big non problem because:
1) you have to download and install the malware - which means you have to agree to the permissions it needs to run.
2) you have to enable Device Administrator support for it to be able to do anything bad to your device
3) You need to be rooted for it to be most effective.
The chances of 1 are admittedly higher for the "I will download everything I possibly can" crowd
The chances of 2 are pretty slim as the sort of people caught by step 1 - are not the sort of people who know about device administrator
and the chances are 3 are 0% because the sort of people who are rooted are not the sort of people who go out and download everything under the sun believing that everything will be sunshine and roses.
Finally - it does not use "previously unknown" vulnerabilities - it uses well known vulnerabilities.
The team that discovered this trojan also admit that because the code remains largely encrypted until it first makes contact with the C&C server - it makes it very difficult to analyse what it does and how it does it - in any great detail - which frankly - I find ludicrous to suggest - either stick it on a fresh device with a PAYG sim card or stick it on an emulator.
Much more importantly - this is another step in the right direction - Google are doing what they promised 2 (3?) years ago at I/O and that is making the newest applications and services available across a wide range of devices instead of just those running the most up-to-date OS version. This already means that being stuck on Froyo or Gingerbread doesn't necessarily mean that you can no longer run the latest version of apps - since the majority of newer features are now part of the Google Play Services support library. This is good for Google because they get their apps out to as many devices as possible, good for developers because they don't need to worry quite so much about supporting different Android platforms and good for end users because buying the latest phone which the manufacturer decides to stop supporting before your 2 year contract is up - doesn't mean what it used to mean.
Re: If Windows™ taught us anything ...
That'll be the fault of OEM's -
The number of XP machines I have had over the years that run something like this - on first boot -
- Your Name
- Do you want automatic updates
- Should the firewall be switched on
*Loading personal profile*
There is no option to select timezone and the clock in the lower right is set to the correct time. I'll admit I have been caught out a few times - mistakenly assuming a device sold in the UK that asks so few questions must already be set up for the UK timezone. It's usually when I [Shift + @] and get " instead of @ that I remember it's still set for US.
I recently had to sort out an email problem for a friend of a friend where they could not send or receive emails. I verified all their settings were correct and then attempted to login to BTYahoo. That all worked without a problem, I then spent a good 10 minutes trying to find the POP/SMTP settings to use to verify they matched with Outlook. I managed to get POP downloading but SMTP kept erroring saying it could not contact the server. After several more minutes Googling I found a page on BT to "automatically configure" the settings for Outlook. Needless to say it did not fix anything - eventually after more Googling of the hexadecimal error message I came across a forum post dated 2010 that said someone had changed the SMTP port number from 25 to 587 so I thought I'd give that a try and it worked, instantly. If it wanted to use port 587 instead of 25 then I would expect the BT help pages to mention this and their automatic configuration tool to have done this for me - but clearly much is amiss in the BT world.
Finally - they have been pestered with emails about "upgrading" to the new Mail interface (which it seems they already have) with warnings about loss of email if they don't upgrade - I hope for their sake that they don't have to follow any more steps to transition to whatever new service BT are going to be using - but somehow I just can't manage to find the faith that BT will not royally screw this one up.
Clearly in such a situation as perpetual war - you would just have to encourage the killbots to sit down and play a game of tic-tac-toe .......
Re: @Andrew Jones 2 Re. Updates
when you buy an app on Google Play you get emailed a receipt
This is just a tabbed version of the existing smart labels - there is nothing new as such - just a new layout to make it faster to access your existing smart labels.
Additionally you get to decide which tabs if any you want to have access to.
Sigh El Reg did you even bother to do the research?
Social as it's name implies is NOT just emails from G+ but also Facebook, Twitter and forums (just like the smart label system currently in use)
Updates - as it's name suggests is just that. Shopping receipts, travel reservations, flight details, dispatch emails, the sort of emails that you want to keep an eye on instead of them getting buried in your inbox. Where you got the idea that you would be notified about Android updates from - I don't know (what would be the point as this new GMail is coming to Android in a few weeks)
Re: Doesn't make sense.
Put another way -
Sky. You pay a subscription - and have to endure adverts - even though there are channels that manage to survive on adverts alone.
Frankly I don't care -
Sure my ISP could offer me a mail service at 25p per year - but it wouldn't be as good or as available everywhere as the "free" offering I get from Google. Sure I could buy a TomTom and get a decent GPS solution for the car (been here done this) but it wouldn't be as reliable or up-to-date as the "free" offering I get from Google.
It is not AT ALL the case that Google is stifling competition - all it means is that the other players need to learn how to compete - if all they can do is offer a substandard service - they made their own beds.
We are talking about a web company - and the one sure thing we all know about web companies - is they can fall just as fast as they can rise.
Sky are apparently claiming elsewhere - that the Apps on Google Play were not replaced or manipulated in any way and are perfectly safe to leave installed on your device. They claim their Twitter account was hacked to tell people that the apps needed uninstalling - but the apps themselves haven't been. As I understand it - this means that the login credentials for their Google Developer console has been found somewhere - but the signing keys to update the apps themselves is still secure. It doesn't really matter much one way or another right now - since Google pulled all the apps anyway.
I'm confused - are these sweepstakes online or on local machines?!
Re: I can hardly believe
....sigh.... for people reading a tech blog the lack of knowledge surrounding this is quite frankly astounding.
There are *NO* API's available to ANYONE to enable the advertising. If a platform has an "official" YouTube app available (that complies with the TOS) it is because Google built it - no-one else.
If the API's existed, Microsoft would of used them - but they simply don't exist.
There are a lot of people who believe that Google were in the wrong - but that is simply because they don't understand the law. Google have no legal requirement whatsoever to write an app for a competing platform - they may have a requirement to make the service available to all platforms (though that's more of a grey area) - Windows Phone users were always able to open a browser and visit YouTube so no law has been broken and it is not anti competitive.
Re: My second job
...indeed.... I see your point.
Noted - must try harder to comment my code.
I suppose it's down to the coding lifecycle - quite often we are trying to get a bit of code to actually do what it is expected to (I would say supposed, but normally it is doing exactly what it is supposed to - just not what we expect it to). The problem that often arises however is: how simple is the code really?
The code at the time of writing might seem simple, especially if you have been working on similar projects in the same timespan - you might (I always do) think it doesn't need a comment because it's quite straightforward and relatively self explanatory and you'd be right. However in 2,4,8 years when you come across it and your coding style has moved on and certain bad habits have been worked on - that can often be the time when the relatively straightforward, relatively self explanatory code turns out not to be so self explanatory or simple and you being to wonder how exactly it even works.
Re: That could have been me....
PS - thanks for the link to f-droid.org I didn't know about that one - looks interesting.
Re: That could have been me....
Pretty much yes.
Any app that causes excessive battery drain will be rated with less than 3 stars. It will be full of reviewers complaining about the excessive battery drain and a large number of reviews will be written entirely in capital letters. The app will be on it's first version and will have never been updated.
If you download an app that wants access to send SMS for example and you can't think of a legitimate reason it would need that ability, DON'T DOWNLOAD IT.
I'm frankly quite amazed that the people who end up with computers and phones crawling with malware have managed to stay off the Darwin awards - it really is no different than telling someone - if you don't want to die - don't stick your head in the gas oven and turn it on. Common sense applies to all aspects of life.
As for Android Malware in general - please be aware that every single time that you hear about how bad Android Malware is - it's from a company that *just happens* to be offering an Android app to solve the problem. I have lot's of friends with Android phones and tablets - I haven't personally seen or witnessed any real Malware on any device yet - what I have however witnessed is people who download every app they can think of and then complain that their device is running like treacle - as 400 different apps attempt to run at once in the background.
We need to invent a second word that means the same thing then - then at least every other word would not have to be alleged....
I'm probably better off just sticking with 3G..... it's unlimited anyway. It's just WiFi is friendlier on the battery.
....or..... don't connect production machines directly to the internet - if they must be reachable remotely - at the very least use VPN!
I'm almost convinced that TETRA only works as well as it does because it uses every radio band going - I don't know exactly what it is designed to operate on (I would Google if I was more interested) but I'm positive from anecdotal evidence that TETRA operates along the lines of "Give me more radio spectrum, I'm hungry, more spectrum" I first became aware of TETRA when the voice of an ambulance driver started coming out of the speakers of the TV, HiFi and Computer all at once - it's actually pretty creepy until you realise what is going on. (and yes for the pedants among you - I am aware that it's caused by poor shielding on the speakers - we are talking pre LCD days) in any case these days there are plenty of complaints from people whose Freeview goes off when TETRA is being used in the vicinity. More info here: http://www.your-book.co.uk/tetra.htm
Re: The police already knew about these guys
.....Unless you are guilty of breaking a law in another country that you haven't actually physically stepped foot in - and then it's guilty until proven innocent - and you are shipped off to said country to be detained until trial.
- or -
The media decides you are guilty....
To do anything more than basic Banking at Natwest - I have to put my card into a battery operated unit and type a code that the website generates into it and then type the code the unit generates into the website. This verifies that I have physical possession of the card that is tied to my account. Is this not a form of 2 step authentication? What about USB dongles or smartcards that are needed to login to a computer system (after entering username and password) is this not also 2 step authentication? OK so this specific example is via SMS but the mechanism is essentially the same - we could even simplify the system further and refer to 2 step authentication as handshaking - in which case it's been around for donkeys years. This of course is the biggest problem with patents - common sense says that is describing a system that already existed in a different form (think "to lock the door / gate you slide the bolt into the hole and to unlock it you slide the bolt back out of the hole" the process is the same whether it is physical or virtual)
Re: That could have been me....
Android Malware only arrives from downloading dodgy apps from *outside* the Google Play store (which means popping into settings and explicitly allowing apps to be installed from UNTRUSTED sources - and accepting the accompanying warning this generates) or being a knob and downloading apps that are clearly not what they claim to be - ie a brand new game that costs from the official developer but is somehow free from some developer with a foreign sounding name (or the name of the app often has foreign letters and symbols in the title). Both situations are no different to downloading stuff you shouldn't be downloading on a PC - or clicking that link in that email that is clearly a scam.
There are ratings for apps and reviews - that clearly tell you if the app is any good or if it's a scam - if idiots don't bother to read them then it's their own fault.
In this case the guy claims to be a technophobe - so it's likely to be something simple like one of the preloaded apps (probably the weather - it usually is) continuously asking for new data - or - it's a bit of a long shot - but he may of accidentally enabled the WiFi hotspot - possibly as an open hotspot instead of with encryption which any nearby Windows machine would of happily automatically connected to.
Clearly we need more information on symptoms.
Re: Hours/minutes of iPlayer HD
A typical 1 hour *SD* iPlayer programme is around 800mb - 1Gb so I'd expect a HD stream to use a fair bit more than that - are you sure 500mb is not more like 15 minutes of HD streaming?
Way too Liberal use of the word "Alleged" - if the evidence is on his computer and he has had to pay bail - I think you can probably drop (or at least go a bit easier) on the word "alleged"
Re: Given the battery life of most smartphones
I've always thought it was an odd thing for people to claim - even since the HTC Desire days I have always left WiFi and GPS enabled and it's never really caused any noticeable battery drain. The new Fused Location provider that is compatible right back to Froyo should further mean that Location based apps use even less battery than before!
Presumably I am still OK connecting to public WiFi and then firing up my VPN client to tunnel my encrypted traffic back to my home network? (That's the main reason I set it up)
and by VCR I obviously meant Video Tape not Video Recorder :/
PS - before mp3's finally became DRM FREE - I found a wonderful bit of software called "Tunebite" which technically is not breaking the law because the original DRM'd file is still in tact with DRM and all - Tunebite just created a digital copy in the same way that one might copy a cassette tape or VCR - except Tunebite was able to do it at up to 6x the speed of the original song and with 6-8 song at once..... I miss Napster.... (illegal and legal versions)
...and this..... is why I'm not terribly keen on buying any Kindle title from Amazon....
Good riddance HTC
Like many others -
had the HTC Desire, loved it - then the world moved on and apps got bigger - was forever getting messages about low storage and the phone became unusable (Gmail and various apps would just stop working - including push messages until some space was freed). Rooted - stuck Oxygen on and continued loving it. Upgraded to the HTC One X - HTC promised at the launch of the One X that they had learnt from their mistakes and would henceforth be releasing LESS phones..... The HTC One X has various software issues from day one - the worst one for me - was the constant issue with Sense crashing when leaving an app and having to wait 30 seconds - 1 minute while it restored itself - the worst reproducible situation was taking a HDR photo and then pressing "home". After a few software updates - Sense seemed more stable and the phone seemed a bit faster - but it still wasn't keen on staying connected to the mobile network. Then I noticed that Skype and G+ could not actually do a video call - that is - they could for about 30 seconds and then the main process would be killed by Android because there is actually not a lot of RAM left by the time Sense (Rosie?) has got it's share. Frustrated with HTC and Three (because of their abysmal update process) I jumped ship to the Nexus 4 - Never again will I go HTC or Carrier branded. It's a shame because HTC phones are nice - but they always seem to have "just enough" hardware to get by - but not enough for future proofing. The Desire would have been amazing had it had a bit more internal storage and the One X would have been amazing if it had another 1GB of RAM. It's worth noting that my HTC Desire is still running as a replacement house phone on CM7 - whereas I lost faith in the One X when the screen cracked one night just sitting there doing nothing - never been dropped - suspect it was a temperature thing.
....and will this need a car battery being lugged around to power it?!
Re: My second job
Clearly you are the holy grail - unfortunately the rest of us are human and make mistakes, sometimes we spend hours and hours staring at the same piece of code that *should* do exactly what we want it to - but for some reason it just doesn't. Sometimes we spend weeks trying to fix a bit of code. Sometimes we re-use old code from a different project that we know works fine - but it's been so long since we wrote it - we can't actually remember *how* it works. That being said - I doubt anyone will want to touch your code ever if it truly warrants comments *at least* every 5 lines.....
Re: I know that voice!
No - Ye Olde Speak and Spell (That was the Orange one with the Green vacuum fluorescent display) had inflections (but I believe it was playing recorded sounds rather than synthesising on the fly). It was later followed by the Blue Speak and Spell with an LCD display and a woman's voice which was definitely pre-recorded.
However - Upvotes given because most people don't remember them - but because of the number of times it told me to spell "necessary" it's permanently imprinted on the brain cells!
Hmmm Nintendo seem determined to generate as much bad press for themselves as they possibly can at the moment.....
There are a whole load of videos teaching players how to do things in the new Sim City game which feature game graphics and music - yet - as far as I know - EA haven't demanded revenue from the ads...... Maybe EA aren't quite as bad as we originally thought!
A phone.... transmitting at 28GHz.... are Samsung also making the backpacks that we will all have to wear that contain the car batteries to keep the thing running?
The bit that makes me laugh the most is this -
supposedly the point of a smart meter is to tell your washing machine to delay for a bit or to tell your freezer not to switch on for the next 15 minutes - it all sounds really logical and useful and that aspect of smart meters I think will be useful..... but...... there is a problem. The "control your house" technology hasn't been decided on or standardised - and it is most certainly not shipping in current domestic products. The last I heard was Zigbee was going to the be likely candidate because of it's mesh technology (z-wave is licence encumbered) - but for the foreseeable future at least these smart meters are not going to be able to control appliances when the grid demand is too high - and we are likely to be left in a situation where thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands of early smart meters don't even contain the necessary technology to talk to household appliances.
I can't help thinking that we really need to sort out the appliance technology and then introduce the smart meter rather than the other way around.
Re: Happy with mine
Shouldn't worry about that - when the main use of "off-tariff" ends up being people charging their electric cars that the government is so insistent on everyone having - the electric companies will do away with cheap electricity overnight as the demand for it will be through the roof (it's roughly 4-7kW for 5-8 hours) which means they will want to charge much more for night-time electric. Taking the Nissan Leaf as an example - the blurb says it takes 12 hours to charge at 10amps - that is roughly 2.5kW * 12hours = 30kW @ 12p (standard rate) is £3.60 or it can charge in 8 hours at 16amps! and costs pretty much the same - BUT can you really see the electric companies allowing hundreds of thousands of people to charge their cars cheaply overnight?
33,333 people charging their cars overnight will consume a total of 1MW
Re: "she emailed over copies of them... and then immediately began panicking"
In the same situation I would have emailed my documents - the important part of the email is that the email is being sent to *THE* apple domain and not just any address that has apple in it, Thus I could be 100% certain that at the very least - the email was going to *someone* at Apple.
All I can say is GTF! Clearly the way we do things now is so terrible that buildings fall down because the measurements they use to build them are not accurate enough, and millions of electronic devices are blowing up left right and centre because the components used to build them are not rated tightly enough.....
What a joke - how much exactly are these new new (since we already have new) units of measurement a) costing to standardise and b) costing to integrate?
The speed and distance signs in the UK are what they are because it would simply cost far too much to change them...
I shall assume this is EU sticking it's fat wrinkly nose in again to further make life difficult for this country - because they come up with such fantastic ideas that make no sense (like the Cookie Law) which no-one else in EU bothers to implement - just the UK - at great expense.... (like the battery hens law)