* Posts by BillG

876 posts • joined 29 Jan 2010

Page:

Energy companies aren't going to slurp your personal data. Honest

BillG
Silver badge
Flame

Re: Murphy's Rule of Personal Data

Easier to ask for forgiveness than permission

Motto of the Catholic Church.

0
0
BillG
Silver badge
Boffin

Murphy's Rule of Personal Data

Once they have your personal information, they will ignore laws and EULAs and exploit it at will.

(I think a Ferengi said that)

21
0

Russian government hackers spent a year in our servers, admits DNC

BillG
Silver badge
Joke

Re: A exercise run for new recruits

An analysis of the servers showed that no financial, donor or personal information had been accessed or stolen by the two teams, the DNC said

Adding, "Hey, we're politicians, would we lie to you???"

1
0

Boffins decipher manual for 2,000-year-old Ancient Greek computer

BillG
Silver badge
IT Angle

Boffins decipher manual for 2,000-year-old Ancient Greek computer

"O.K., Robert, you've been working on translating the first page, what does it say?"

"This Page Intentionally Left Blank"

32
0

Microsoft buys LinkedIn for the price of 36 Instagrams

BillG
Silver badge
WTF?

Re: Eh?

I use LinkedIn all the time, I find it a very valuable professional resource. And unlike others here I am rarely critical of Microsoft.

But I can't see this as anything less than a complete and total disaster. I see MS using this to try to start to build a Google-type information-sharing, privacy-ripping empire. I see MS demanding everyone have an outlook.com email address the same way Google services require Gmail. I see my LI email address being spammed to high heaven while my privacy is violated more times than a stripper in the VIP room. I see LI features that only work if the Win10 app is installed. Nothing good can come of this.

28
1

Wi-Fi hack disables Mitsubishi Outlander's theft alarm – white hats

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Yay, Yet Another Vehicle Hijacking By Maker Lazyness

My car has no wireless connectivity, and uses an ignition key. My next car will have the same.

6
0

Capitalize 'Internet'? AP says no – Vint Cerf says yes

BillG
Silver badge
Headmaster

Just as the AP created a furore when it dropped the hyphen in "e-mail" back in 2011

Compound words start off as two words, then become hyphenated, then become one word. Examples are downstairs, WiFi, etc.

IMO as a writer and author, when we are referring to the Internet we are obviously referring to a proper noun and we all know what we are referring to. Proper nouns are capitalized.

OTOH I can get lazy and not want to hit that Shift key like everyone else.

1
0

Nest's bricking of Revolv serves as wake-up call to industry

BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: What sort of wake-up call?

Here's the thing - while many potential Nest customers may not notice Nest's irresponsible shutting down of Revolv by bricking products people paid good money for, you can bet that huge commercial and industrial customers will notice. They will especially notice when a Nest salesperson comes knocking at their door. This is going to crush Nest's future.

0
0

Sources! say! Twitter's! after! you! Yahoo!

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Got to love those contracts

Yahoo has a vast number of email users and extensive online real estate. Ripe for someone who wants to branch out into new territory.

IMO potential suitors for Yahoo from highest probability to lowest:

Amazon

Twitter

Facebook

Microsoft

eBay

1
0

Thai bloke battles jumbo python in toilet todger thriller

BillG
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Science needs to know

While understandably screaming, the bleeding 38-year-old did have the presence of mind to call to his missus Sawittree Shooyoung to bring a rope, which he used to lash the serpent's head to the bathroom door.

That is some pretty shrewd thinking under the circumstances. To be in that much pain, and still come up with a plan to rope the snake to the bathroom door is some very smart thinking under the circumstances.

17
0

Lyft, Uber throw Texas-sized tantrum over Austin driver law

BillG
Silver badge
Paris Hilton

"Unfortunately, the rules passed by city council don't allow true ridesharing to operate," Lyft said in announcing its closure... The dial-a-ride app-makers have been in almost constant battles with local officials in major cities around the world, usually over charges that the ride-sharing services violate taxi codes.

Despite Uber's and Lyft 's best efforts, they cannot convince people that ridesharing is not another name for taxi service.

0
0

Hacked in a public space? Thanks, HTTPS

BillG
Silver badge
WTF?

The one nugget of truth in the article is that the list of CAs built in to browsers etc. is ridiculous.

Wow, I just checked the list of trusted certificates on my work computer and it's almost 300. There is a scary one from my employer with the two purposes "All issuance policies" and "All application policies".

I remember when the used to be about a dozen trusted certificates and you could recognize the issuer of each, like "Verisign", "Thawte", or "Microsoft". Now, I've got a certificate issued by "TÜBİTAK UEKAE Kök Sertifika Hizmet Sağlayıcısı - Sürüm 3" (sic). Really???

1
1

Google asks the public to name the forthcoming Android N operating system

BillG
Silver badge
WTF?

Re: Nougat

Nutty feature of Nougat:

On the apps front, Android N will have a new feature, still in development, called Instant Apps. This allows a user to click on a link to a site that has its own app and just download a few parts of the software to help the link run more smoothly and with more features, but without installing the full code.

Gee! What could POSSIBLY go wrong with THAT???

2
0

LinkedIn plays down '117 million users' breach data sale

BillG
Silver badge

"For several years, we have hashed and salted every password in our database" Wait, does that mean that there has been some point at which they *didn't*?

Yes, LinkedIn admitted that during the original breach in 2012, passwords were definitely NOT salted.

So in this case, "several" = 4.

You need a marketing-speak decoder ring when reading LI press statements. For example, when LI announced:

In 2012, LinkedIn was the victim of an unauthorised access and disclosure of some members' passwords.

In the above statement, to LI, "some" = 117 Million.

5
0

Dark net LinkedIn sale looks like the real deal

BillG
Silver badge
Holmes

the link about salting is from 2006

Actually, it's from 2012.

0
0
BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

It gets worse - the passwords were not salted:

LinkedIn Hacked, Passwords Please No Salt

6
0

IBM's Internet of Things brainbox foresees 'clean clothes as a service'

BillG
Silver badge
Holmes

Re: They are still missing the point.

Despite white goods makers cramming washers with multiple programs, he said, many people rarely used more than two settings. Manufacturers might be completely oblivious to this.

Actually, manufacturers do know this. They offer product lines to consumers with two settings, and four, and eight, etc. People pay for the higher-priced models, regardless of how many setting they later use. They snub the two-setting machine, instead buying the 8-setting machine and then only use two settings.

It's not about what features consumers use, it's about what they are willing to buy.

7
0

IT glitch causes 'nationwide' Post Office outage

BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

"Post Office"?

Um, since this is an international website, it would be nice if the author pointed out which country's P.O. she is referring to.

2
7

Must listen: We've found the real Bastard Operator From Hell

BillG
Silver badge
Devil

Re: <standing ovation>

That was bloody awful. It's my new ringtone.

1
0

Watch it Apple: time has come for cheaper rivals' strap-ons

BillG
Silver badge
Coat

Re: Ugh

Ugh for battery life, the Apple Watch requires daily charging, unless you actually use the thing in which case it needs charging two or more times a day.

Feedback I've gotten from bartenders is that iPhone people lean over the bar and ask for a charger much more often than Androids.

0
0

Docker hired private detectives to pursue woman engineer's rape, death threat trolls

BillG
Silver badge
Megaphone

Re: Utterly unacceptable

"This industry is fucked," she wrote

I would not blame the industry. It is that, unfortunately, the internet is an outlet for sociopaths. These are the people on forums that have no interest in sharing ideas and only feel pleasure at hurting people. It's a mental health issue, which also makes it a parenting issue.

What these people desperately want is to be taken seriously. The best psychological defense really is to laugh at them. It drains their venom which stops them cold.

7
0

Kent Police handed domestic abuse victim's data to alleged abuser – a Kent cop

BillG
Silver badge
WTF?

Kent Police has been fined £80k...

But no individual was punished. Kent Police took the hit instead. Not much of a punishment if the group takes the blame for the individual.

10
0

PayPal freezes 400-job expansion in North Carolina over bonkers religious freedom law

BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: America

The bill requires transgendered people to use the bathroom of their original gender unless they have changed it on their birth certificate...

There's a reason for this. In California, you have straight guys dressing as women so they can walk into the women's rest room and get a quick thrill (hope I haven't given anyone reading this any ideas...).

...banned local LGBT equality ordinances

I've read the bill PDF and I can't find this anywhere.

I do know that the U.S. Constitution does not allow for a "protected class". While discrimination in any form is unconstitutional and hence illegal, you can't pass a law that says discriminating against people of XYZ is more illegal.

This was emphasized in California in LA around 1986. LA passed a law making it illegal to discriminate against gays. Soon after that, LGBTs, African-Americans, women, Native Americans, Japanese-Americans, and more all demanded their own law. It got outrageous when at a rally each minority group accused other minority groups of discrimination against their minority group.

1
0

Firefox features will land out of cycle and Mozilla's cool with that

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Ohh, Gee...

Firefox, with ten tabs open: 755Mb

Allow me to be the rebel in the lot that doesn't like being told what's good for me:

Firefox 28 with ten tabs open - 520Mb

Yes, I still use FF28 on my daily driver. I have another similar laptop that stays updated with the most recent version of FF and FF28 is consistently faster and uses less memory.

Why am I still using FF28? It's faster and uses less memory. Also, my computer, my browser, my choice. Remember choice? Mozilla used to be all about that.

0
0

Microsoft's bigoted teen bot flirts with illegali-Tay in brief comeback

BillG
Silver badge
Headmaster

I love the inevitability of this - they create something that learns from the internet and get surprised when it learns from the internet...

True, when you read up on the AI it seems that it learns from what is tweeted towards it, so if you constantly tweet racist crap it becomes a racist crapper.

Now, here's the big challenge for Microsoft: how do you program in a sense of morality in an AI interface?

1
0

Top! tip! for! Yahoo! – 'Fire! your! board! of! directors!'

BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: the lazy way out

Kodak, Xerox, and Yahoo. All companies with management afraid to change. For weak managers sometimes it's safer to do nothing, than take a risk and do something.

1
0

Dodgy software will bork America's F-35 fighters until at least 2019

BillG
Silver badge
Pirate

Re: A boondoggle through and through and now ejection seats are also a problem?

What did they do, reinvent the wheel or something similar?

No. The unfortunate truth of the F-35 fiasco is that all the major contractors, in order to keep costs down, laid off experienced engineers and hired young, inexperienced hardware and software engineers instead. Take a look online and read it for yourself.

5
0

Pope kicks off Easter week by triumphal entry into ... Instagram

BillG
Silver badge
Thumb Up

the papal piccy feed has amassed 1.5 million followers already. In the old days, holding the attention of just 5,000 followers required five fish and a couple of loaves.

Love this turn of phrase. +1

3
0

FAA's 'drone smash risk to aircraft' is plane crazy

BillG
Silver badge
Mushroom

Beware the Dangeours Idiots

We are all forgetting that sooner or later some idiot is going to strap some explosives onto a drone and go after an aircraft, maybe go for the cockpit windows. If they happen to get ahold of some highly dense military grade explosives then it's a whole new range of hurt.

0
0

Apps that 'listen in' to your mobile get slapped by US watchdog

BillG
Silver badge
Holmes

Re: Siri and Cortana

"the FTC said that anyone who plans to make use of the code and covert ultrasonic signals in America will only be able to do so legally by obtaining consent."

Screw consent. It is called wiretapping and should be punishable by imprisonment.

21
0

Millions menaced as ransomware-smuggling ads pollute top websites

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Websites visited by millions of people daily

Adblock Plus to the rescue!

1
0

Google fends off EFF's claims kids probed by Chromebook software

BillG
Silver badge
FAIL

Re: How many times have Google ...

Google always, always, always has a well-prepared excuse when they are caught.

The proper answer to Google's excuse here is that children's privacy is more precious than search results.

0
0

Blah Blah blah ... I don't care! To hell with your tech marketing bull

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

@Trevor Potts

Trevor, you said everything I have been thinking over my 20 years in technology marketing. Let me sum up your article in just one sentence:

It's all about TRUST.

In technology marketing I haven't always had the best solution. Sometime I did, sometimes I did not. But my most important rule is that I always do what I say I'm going to do. On that basis I build trust, and based on that trust, my customers, who I treat as friends, would rather buy an inferior solution from me than a superior solution from a stranger. Now, I'm not implying that something is wrong with my solution or product, it's just that when something goes wrong - and wait for it, you know that something ALWAYS goes wrong - they trust me to stand by their side and fix the problem (while covering for them if it's their fault) rather than going with a better solution sold by some phony in a suit.

I'm sorry about the loss of your cat, I've been though that and never had another cat again. A pet's affection is real and believable, there is TRUST between the two of us. I've discovered that in times of deep loss, we find our emotional core and discover what's really important. God Bless.

6
0

Carolina cop cuffed for 'carjacking'

BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

If found guilty, the Hardin faces a possible 10 years' jail time

So he'll be doing some hard time?

13
0

What we all really need is an SD card for our cars. Thanks, SanDisk

BillG
Silver badge
Megaphone

Automotive Electronics and Quality

I've worked in Automotive Electronics for over ten years and I can tell you these memory cards are necessary. Automotive is an extremely harsh environment, and electronics in the cabin needs to be qualified over extremes of temperatures from -45°C to +105°C (up to 125°C in the engine compartment). There are also tests for vibration, high humidity, and long life.

For automotive semiconductors the specification is AEC-Q200 - look it up.

Maybe your commercial-grade USB stick is serving you well in your car, but consider that a failure rate of 5% is considered high and completely unacceptable in automotive electronics. If you have 50,000 vehicles that means 2,500 failures you will read about on the internet.

I can tell you that, in the early mad rush to connect cars, many car manufacturers were only using commercial-grade connectivity products (WiFi, Bluetooth, Ethernet, etc). Watch how many of these cars have failures four years after they were sold.

14
0

Top new IoT foundation (yeah, another one) to develop open standards

BillG
Silver badge
Thumb Down

Re: Mee too!!!

Many of these organizations are not traditional standards bodies, because they do not follow traditional standards processes, such as public ratification and publication of standards.

In most cases these organization only make their publications available first to paid members of the organizations. Because of this, bodies like OCF, IETF, and WiSUN are not a traditional open-standards organizations.

0
0

Google to snatch control of Android updates from mobe makers – analyst

BillG
Silver badge
Joke

This is the only way that Google can end the endemic fragmentation that continues to plague its devices as well as take back control of software distribution

To put it another way: "This is the only way that Google can end this destructive conflict, and bring order to the galax... uh, software distribution"

26
0

FTDI boss hits out at 'Chinese criminal gang' pumping knock-off chips

BillG
Silver badge
Headmaster

Re: Fakes damaging FTDI's reputation

Dropbear: there is no such thing as a guaranteed supply chain unless one buys from YOU directly

Wrong, all you need to do is buy from an authorized distributor. They are listed on the manufacturer's website. It's as easy to buy from an authorized FTDI distributor such as Mouser Electronics as it is to buy a book off Amazon.

Pay a few cents more than the fake and you get a reliable device.

Even if the FTDI drivers worked with the fake, there is a good chance the fake will stop working a year from now. These are cheap counterfeit chips, and the counterfeiters are overclocking a cheap MCU to do it. The FTDI design techniques are insufficient to prevent the cheap counterfeits from eventually overheating. Go read the product reviews on Amazon. Manufacturers that knowingly buy counterfeits put out cheap products that eventually fail (think they give a damn about you???).

Dropbear: the clones were actually MORE faithfully following your spec than your own damn chips did

Now you are just making stuff up.

0
0
BillG
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Caveat emptor

After last year's criticism, Dart reckons today's approach, in which the driver refuses to work if it detects a counterfeit (without bricking the product), is endorsed by most of its customers.

I work for an authorized distributor that sells FTDI chips and I can tell you the above statement is true. Serious customers want to know they are buying genuine chips and they quiz us to make certain we sell the real stuff.

It's funny when people that bought counterfeit FTDI chips off eBay call us and demand we switch them for genuine chips "because it's not my fault I bought a counterfeit!!!".

No manufacturer wants to risk the reputation of their company's end products by putting counterfeit components in their system.

0
0

US Congress locks and loads three anti-encryption bullets

BillG
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Let me fix that for ya'

The bill to grant the Congress sole rights to an encryption solution is likely to face opposition from Congressmen the U.S. Constitution with a strong states-rights philosophy.

a.k.a. The Tenth Amendment

1
0

Facebook tells Viz to f**k right off

BillG
Silver badge
Meh

Re: A once brilliant comic....

It's rare that I don't like something attempting to be comedic, I like to brag that I got my comedy chops from watching Monty Python. But when I look at Viz, I think he presently characterizes the phrase "That's not Funny, that's Stupid".

2
0

This is what it looks like when your website is hit by nasty ransomware

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Just an idea

Maybe it's not CTB-Locker, it just claims it is? Unless you are expecting honesty from criminals, that is...

0
0

Obama govt proposes 33% hike in cyber-security spending

BillG
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Knock me over with a feather

Federal spending grew much more (by both percentage and actual dollars) under Bush than it has so far under Obama. But don't let facts get in the way of a good rant.

You listed the submitted budgets and did not include off-budget spending. If you want to see just how outrageous federal spending has become under Obama, look at this chart from George Mason University:

High Levels of Government Spending Become Status Quo

Just take a look at Bush's last year when the Dems in Congress passed massive pork and overrode Bush's veto.

But even if you do not agree with me, laying blame does not make everything better. If you are a Dem, proving Bush is to blame does not suddenly make the economy O.K. And if you did not live though the Federal government incompetence that followed Hurricane Sandy, you can't understand. And if you think that the people whose lives were destroyed by Obama's mishandling of Sandy victims are simply inconvenient to your political ideology, then you are a cold person.

If you think that it's O.K. that of the $50B of the Sandy bill, $48B went to pork and only $2B went to victims <- if you want to make excuses for that, then tell that to my brother. His house is still uninhabitable because the promised Federal funds never showed up.

http://www.fema.gov/sandy-recovery-office

http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2015/03/08/3631236/christie-sandy-protestors-iowa/

0
0
BillG
Silver badge
Devil

Re: Knock me over with a feather

The outgoing Obama administration has proposed increasing federal cyber-security spending by $5bn, or around a third, in the hope of reaching $19bn in 2017.

Yeah, right. I remember Barry's $50B Hurricane Sandy Relief Bill where $2B went to Sandy relief and $48B went to programs like trout fisheries in Nevada and a museum in Arkansas.

4
4

Sick and tired of modern Windows? Upgrade to Windows 3.1 today – in your web browser

BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Fiddling around with my Windows 3.11 desktop was like training wheels for my career with computers.

But before Windows - before the Mac - there was: The Amiga! It just worked and had amazing graphics for the time. It failed because of poor marketing.

24
0

Google licks its lips at sight of Qualcomm's 64-bit server ARM chips

BillG
Silver badge
Meh

Data centres could be on the cusp of switching to ARM very rapidly

I don't think you read the article - ARM is gaining traction very slowly in very high end servers, during which Intel/x86 is NOT standing still.

Intel will defend the server market like a lioness protecting her cubs. They will expand their highly efficient x64 server architectures and continue to innovate.

In the end, the competition will benefit server manufacturers.

0
1

Dutch cops train anti-drone eagle squadron

BillG
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Cool video

@Known Hero

You get an eagle, they going to start making drones to take down eagles !!! Then where will we be !! covered in chips and blood !!!

Then it begins!

1
0
BillG
Silver badge
Happy

Re: Cool video

Forget the drones - I want an eagle!

24
0

Samsung trolls Google, adds adblockers to phones

BillG
Silver badge
Devil

Re: If nothing else ...

For me, mobile ads are reaching the same tipping point as full browser ads, but even more so.

I absolutely will not tolerate mobile browser ads that play video as soon as I open the page. The unwanted attention-getting noise, the slowing of my browser and phone, the battery drain - then there's the hunt on the browser page to find the video to stop it.

I also object to the official-looking ads that imitate an Android interface with "You have one unread messages". Yes, I'm experienced enough to know it's an ad but how many others will fall for it, click, and then get duped?

On my rooted Android I use an adblocker to block ads on my apps ONLY when the ads interfere with the operation of the app. I gladly pay $3 or so for the non-ad supported version. But the mobile browser ads are really trying my patience.

22
1

30 years on from Challenger, NASA remembers the fallen

BillG
Silver badge
Mushroom

Re: Was a very long day for me.

I remember I was two years out of college working as a EE for a contractor that had equipment on the shuttle, although I was not on that project. I saw the explosion when I was home for lunch. I immediately drove back to the office.

We were all told to stand by in case NASA needed our assistance in regards to our equipment. As EEs we were all walking around like zombies, in total shock. It would have been a mixed honor to assist in the investigation, but no request from NASA came to our department that day.

I reminded myself why I wanted to be an Electrical Engineer in the first place - I wanted to create, to build, to make a difference. NASA was the epitome of why I studied all those years. When the word came out that the disaster occurred because a non-engineer manager had overridden the techies that were yelling DON'T LAUNCH, it impressed in me a distrust of non-engineering management that exists to this day.

16
0

Page:

Forums