* Posts by NightFox

420 posts • joined 23 Oct 2009

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No super-kinky web smut please, we're British

NightFox

So, it's fine for Theresa May to s**t all over us, but not for anyone to watch?

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Amazon's Netflix-gnasher to hit top gear In December

NightFox

There seems to be an assumption that this means that The Grand Tour will be made available to stream in all these countries before Christmas and therefore Amazon video must be extending its footprint, but is it not possible that Amazon are just selling the show to traditional broadcasters in other countries?

Hey, maybe it'll even sell it back to the BBC (like it did with Ripper Street) to replace Top Gear, coals to Newcastle and all that

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IoT worm can hack Philips Hue lightbulbs, spread across cities

NightFox
Coat

Re: hollowed-out trade mark

They still make those nice screwdrivers that you can open paint tins with though

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Royal Horticultural Society's PC is rooted for all to see

NightFox

Went to watch Thomas Dolby play London's Scala a few years back. The show didn't get off to the best of starts when a few minutes in the sequencer software (Cubase IIRC) that the whole gig was running on came up with "Your trial period has expired...." in front of the packed venue

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Adventures in (re) naming your business: Fire up the 4-syllable random name generator

NightFox

Coming up with 21st brand names is so easy:

Take a verb loosely related to your product

Add "a" to the end of it (or even "ia" if you really want to go for it)

Job done. Make sure you charge a fixed fee, not an hourly rate.

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My Nest smoke alarm was great … right up to the point it went nuts

NightFox

Re: I had a first gen go wacko

I also had 2 first gen Nests, which were fine until they got to almost 2 years old, and one started false alarming in the middle of the night, which then set the other off in sympathy like howling dogs. Unfortunately they were the mains operated ones with a non-accessible back-up battery so after two nights of false alarms I ended up putting them in the garage wrapped in several blankets so as to hopefully not wake up the whole neighbourhood when they went off again.

I was all set to kill them in a bucket of water the next day if the batteries hadn't run down, but by chance I noticed that because I'd bought them from John Lewis, they were still covered by a two year guarantee. Their CS said I'd need to take them into my local JL, so I ended up having to drive 25 miles with two smoke detectors on the passenger seat next to me, having to hit the silence button when they went off every few minutes. Eventually got to JL half-deaf and exchanged for two v2 versions (which have worked faultlessly since).

Next morning I got a call from the JL store. Did I know any way of stopping these alarms going off every few minutes? They were driving everyone in the store mad and somebody was having to stay near them to mute them all the time so as not to cause staff/customers to think it was a genuine alarm. The back-up battery life in those things must have been incredible.

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NightFox

Re: What is 'Smart'?

Well, I'll grant you that it's not quite 'smart' in that it doesn't involve any conditional decision making, but there is IoT integration beyond just the smoke detectors - if one of my Nest smoke detectors triggers, it will automatically turn off my central heating boiler (controlled by Tado) and turn on all my Philips Hue lights in red, which apparently provides better lighting in a smoke-filled environment.

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When you've paid the ransom but you don't get your data back

NightFox

Re: Is it legal to pay this?

No different from kidnap for ransom pay-outs, and there's no law against them across most of the world

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Google plots cop detection for auto autos

NightFox

Re: red and blue lights

I perked my own interest and found this: http://www.911signalusa.com/how-emergency-vehicle-lights-are-used-a-112.html

which says "Additionally, some states, including Texas and New Mexico, also allow blue emergency lights to be used on tow trucks and construction or utility vehicles."

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NightFox

Re: Fax noise!

Why design new universal protocols when you're already using the well-established fax protocol? Since the mass adoption of the MP3 player, most cars are fitted with now-redundant CD slots. Simply fit a fax behind that and low and behold, the driver gets a slip of paper spooling out of the CD player slot with PULL OVER printed on it in a blurry '80s stylee.

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NightFox

Re: red and blue lights

Or in Albuquerque NM - I remember pulling over once when I saw a blue flashing light in my rear-view mirror and getting much cursed and beeped at by the drivers behind me, but I smugly remained pulled over as they passed thinking "idiots, they should check their rear view mirrors". Then the bin lorry with the blue flashing light also trundled past me. It would seem that in some parts of the US the only colour of flashing light restricted to the emergency (or should that be 'murguncy'?) services is red, with service vehicles able to use any other colour they want.

As an aside, it's always struck me as odd in Spain that fire engines and police cars have blue lights, whilst ambulances have amber lights, the same colour as bin lorries.

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Publishing military officers' names 'creates Islamic State hitlist'

NightFox

Also the Police

Police officers aren't required to divulge their names when they would otherwise be required to if whatever they're dealing with is related to terrorism (which, as we all know, includes just about everything these days). Because obviously PC Smith identifying himself when carrying out a stop-and-search is going to put him right at the top of ISIS hit-list, who would otherwise never be able to track him down without his name.

I also question why uniformed armed officers and the like frequently feel the need to disguise themselves by wearing balaclavas (no, not flash hoods) - I suspect in most cases it's more to do with achieving the Hollywood look than any qualified threat of reprisal compared to that for any other uniformed police officer, or is the photo of the local beat officer on my village noticeboard soon going to be anonymised and have black tape put over his eyes?

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NightFox

Re: Islamic State Hitlist

I think you might be thinking of the various "Secret Bunker" signs dotted around the country where cold war nuclear control bunkers have been re-opened as tourist attractions

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Russian spy aircraft are flying over Britain – and the MoD's cool with it

NightFox

Re: Drone on

Can't we resurrect XH558 to do our reconnaissance flights, just for shits'n'giggles like?

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Gullible Essex Police are now using junk science lie detectors

NightFox

Ahh Mystic Meg, always proving there WAS a happy medium after all.

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ZX Printer's American cousin still in use, 34 years after purchase

NightFox

Much more entertaining was my Commodore 1520 Printer Plotter - watching the thing hand-write every character with a miniature biro, in the choice of black, blue, red & green. I've still got it somewhere but I guess then pens will be long dried out by now.

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Google tried to be funny, cocked it up, everyone thought it was a bug

NightFox

Re: What a useful feature.

Outlook has a little-known "ignore" function that pretty much does this

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NightFox

MIssing the Point?

Even if this hadn't backfired, where's the April Fool prank? Surely the whole point of April Fools is FOOLING people into believing something that isn't true... how does this even meet that criteria since they actually did it?

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Argos offers 'buy now pay in 3 months' deal

NightFox

Re: Because data protection

If I get one of these calls and I'm confident that it's legitimate but they're asking me to authenticate, then rather than end up having to call back a call centre in India, I give them a false answer (such as wrong letters from my password). If they're genuine, they'll tell me it's wrong and give me another chance, if they accept the false info then the phone goes down.

Yes, I do realise it's not fool proof, but I takes me chances.

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Ready for a nostalgia kick? Usborne has put its old computer books on the web for free

NightFox

Wow, I'd totally forgotten these - though there must be 3 or 4 of them still on my old bedroom bookshelf back at my Dad's house. I think my most used (by a long shot) was the Adventure Game one. I got it just before our annual 2-week holiday to Wales, and spent most of that fortnight laying out the map and items on paper, desperate to get back home and be able to start coding it on my C64.

I still remember that the very first thing you had to do to get anywhere in my game (The Adventurer) was "CALL GUARD" - luckily my game got its guards from the same place all Hollywood movies get theirs from so the guard was stupid and easy to overcome.

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Council of Europe gets tough on net neutrality

NightFox

How far "down the line" will this go? Does this mean that that it'll be illegal for a hotel or hotspot provider to offer me free Internet "for browsing only" at an artificially restricted speed, but offer me the option of a faster service that will also allow VPN, VOIP and downloading for a fee?

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TalkTalk: Hackers may have nicked personal, banking info on 4 million Brits

NightFox

Re: Apathy

Let me change your post:

Apathy

It is astounding how numb BUSINESS is about this continual tide of massive breaches of private info right around the world. W[here]TF is this going to go.

If I was CEO of any large company, the minute I saw something like this in the news I'd have my CISO in front of me and I'd be demanding assurances that all our data was encrypted etc

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Doctor Who returns to our screens next week – so, WHO is the worst Time Lord of them all?

NightFox

Someone please remind me why we count Paul McGann, but not Peter Cushing?

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Turn-by-turn directions coming to Ordnance Survey Maps

NightFox

Re: too little too late

Bing Maps gives you online access to OS maps for free - though I'll admit I can't find it on the new version so either they've done a Google and made it impossible to find, or maybe they've just done away with it. However, click the option to revert to the previous version and it's there - just click the "Road" dropdown and you can choose from Road, London Street Map or OS Map.

Freetarding FTW!

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ZOMBIE Commodore PET lurches out of its 1970s grave – as a FONDLESLAB

NightFox

PET 2001

So despite being called PET, this is actually a C64 and Amiga emulator? Shame - I was really hoping to get some quality Android Nim and AFO time in.

Now correct me if I'm wrong here (and I'm sure someone will), but as I remember it *all* PETs were white-screen with the built-in tape deck - the later models with green screen and a proper keyboard (which meant the tape deck was separate) were actually called CBM 3032 (the last two digits being the memory size) - I think the PET name was only officially used for the PET 2001?

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Oi, idiot fanbois. DON'T buy this gun-shaped iPhone case, mmkay?

NightFox

It's impressive how they've perfectly segued the shape of the iPhone into the shape of a gun

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Blighty's BONKERS BANKING BONKING BONANZA: Apple Pay arrives

NightFox
Unhappy

Seriously, what did I post in that to warrant a thumbs-down? If I got something wrong then ok, but it would be useful to actually reply and correct me.

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NightFox

Not quite - there's two aspects to Apple Pay (which is why many people get confused over whether retailers support it or not).

First, there's the simple replacement for non-authenticated payments of <£20 which is pretty much the same as contactless cards or what other RFID phones can already do, with the difference that Apple Pay doesn't provide the card reader with your card number, instead it provides a single-use number. Not sure if other phone's systems do that. There's no special terminal or support needed for this - if a retailer can take contactless payments, then your can use Apple Pay, the reader just sees it as a contactless card.

The other aspect of Apple Pay is that for larger transactions (over the £20 limit), users can authenticate on their phones (with fingerprint or passcode) rather than using a PIN, and again the retailer and the payment processor will never actually see your credit card number, just the one-time number transmitted by your iPhone. This is going to need specific support, hence the list of retailers who "support Apple Pay".

I'm sure someone can give a more technical explanation than that, but the bottom line is you never provide your actual card details. So effectively Apple Pay is an anonymising service for card payments with the associated security/privacy benefits that brings about.

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NightFox

Re: HSBC are systematically incompetent.

Loving the way HSBC (incl First Direct) are now denying they ever said they'd be supporting Apple Pay from today, despite the overwhelming mass of evidence to the contrary - and even the fact that it was their memo which first leaked today as being the launch date!

I mean, what's the world coming to when we can't even trust the banks to be honest with us?

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On yer bike: Hammerhead satnav for cyclists – just don't look down

NightFox

Warhammer

"It takes the form of a rubberised, soft-touch black device shaped like a letter T – or a hammerhead shark, if, like the inventors you're feeling whimsical"

Pedantic I know, but I didn't see the inventors compare it to a (hammerhead) shark at all - I think that was *your* whimsical inference. They just call it a hammerhead, i.e. a shape which is just like - well, you know, the T-shaped head of a hammer. It could just as well be compared to any of the other hundreds of objects similarly-named for their hammerhead shape, all of which have temporaily escaped my mind at this current time.

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Angry Austrian takes a hit in David and Goliath Facebook battle

NightFox

Offical Reponse

Is that a Facebook stooge taking a defiant piss against the wall of the office of the Data Protection Commissioner in the background of the photo?

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Got a GUITAR, daddio? Wanna plug it into iOS or Droid? Try the iRig 2

NightFox

Suck it up, Jony Ive

And the award for the most skeumorphic app in the world, ever, goes to...

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We forget NOTHING, the Beeb thunders at Europe

NightFox

Ironic...

...as I'd imagine that a disproportionately high number of the people or incidents where this "right to be forgotten" was invoked probably relate to the BBC in the 70's/80's anyway, allegedly.

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UK.gov loses crucial battle in home-taping war with musicians

NightFox

I just hope St Peter doesn't ask to check my iPod when I get to the Pearly Gates

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What an eyeful: Apple's cut price 27in iMac with Retina Display

NightFox

YOYOY?

I just can't understand why Apple don't include some form of video-in on these things? I'd take a bet that I'm not the only person out there wanting a Mac somewhere in between a Mini and a Pro in terms of spec, but needing a monitor I can still share with my Xbox and Windows laptop.

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Swordfish fatally stabs man after man stabs, fatally, swordfish

NightFox

Re: GOOD

I wonder if J R Hartley used to receive abuse and death threats?

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Ex-cop: Holborn fireball comms outage cover for £200m bling heist gang

NightFox

OK, but how would this incident have helped their heist? As far as I understand it was too far away to cause any noise to drown out the sound of their own activity, people in the area of the heist weren't evacuated, and as for tying up the emergency services - really? I can't see the Met not responding to a phone call or alarm activation because they maybe had a couple of their cars busy a bit further away with a road closure?

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Our 4King benders are so ace we're going full OLED, says LG

NightFox

Re: content is king

>Anyone can tell the difference between looking through a window and looking at a TV displaying the same scene. This should tell you that there is clearly room for improvement...

That would certainly explain the runaway success of 3DTV

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Man hauled before beak for using drone to film Premiership matches

NightFox

Re: Not dangerous, Actually need *less* restriction and less paranoia

There's plenty of instances of people being killed by radio controlled planes or helicopters - "drones" is just a modern catch-all that's made an enthusiasts' hobby acceptably main-stream; they're not just the things that weigh about as much as a gnat and startle the cat if they drop out of the sky and land on it.

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Wireless Power standards are like Highlanders: There can be only ONE

NightFox

As a matter of interest, does anyone know how the energy efficiency of wireless charging compares to traditional plug-in charging? For simplicity, let's ignore any power usage by the chargers when the device isn't actually connected to them.

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OnePlus One cut-price Android phone on sale to all... for 1 HOUR

NightFox

Here's predicting the site gets overloaded and crashes within the first 10 seconds of the 1 hour slot and comes back up about 60 minutes later

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Microsoft's rumoured $2.5bn Minecraft gobble expected on Monday

NightFox

Re: Merchandising

The shelves of my local Tesco might not yet be adorned with Minecraft socks, sandwich boxes and toothpaste, but they've already pulled off the ultimate coup - Lego

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Hacker publishes tech support phone scammer slammer

NightFox

Re: I'm getting stabbed...

Brave Sir Knight to Squire: "See how yonder French archer will fire his arrows on me only for my new shiny armour to deflect them back through his eye and into his sku...."

TWANG................... THUNK!!!

"Oh bugger"

(Drops down dead with several arrows protruding from chest)

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AVG stung as search revenue from freebie scanners dries up

NightFox

So if they were making more revenue from ad income from their trial version than they were from users who then take out a paid subscription, why not focus on the ad-supported model instead of hiding it and trying to push users to subscribe?

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

NightFox

Shebang

Are you sure that wasn't just Ricky Martin on the "on hold" music?

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NightFox

Re: femotocells

1) Take out contract with chosen provider

2) Next day ring them to cancel, explain to retentions department you can't get a signal but would love to be able to stay with them

3) Take delivery of free femtocell they send you

It's worked for me with 3, O2 and EE.

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Thirteen Astonishing True Facts You Never Knew About SCREWS

NightFox
Happy

Re: Arapaho used Left-hand Screws?

I was surprised, neigh shocked, that I noticed that those LH screws "looked wrong" before I even read what they were. Considering I'm one of those people who has to spend about 5 minutes working out which way is clockwise on an upside-down screw, I'm actually quite chuffed with this newly identified skill of mine.

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Brit celebs' homes VANISH from Google's Street View

NightFox

Agree totally. Oh no, hold on, apart from the fact that anyone can ask Google to do this for them, at no charge. Apart from that you're spot on though. Yeah, bastards!

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Cambridge's tiny superconducting magnet breaks strength record

NightFox

Re: GdBCO?

Ahhh, good point - no wonder I haven't been able to drag cars across the road or aircraft out of the sky despite all my efforts so far today

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NightFox

Re: Very impressive.

"Not forgetting the potential for ridiculously expensive headphones for DJ's"

Beats by Dr Dre already managed that for everyone without any of this magnetic science mumbo-jumbo

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