* Posts by Detective Emil

102 posts • joined 10 Feb 2010

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Flexi-Plexistor's software-defined memory roadmap

Detective Emil
Flame

Someone call the fire brigade!

My buzzword detector just went up in in flames.

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Adobe scrambles to untangle itself from QuickTime after Apple throws it over a cliff

Detective Emil

Adobe should take QuickTime over

After all, they're specialists in offering products with gaping security holes.

16
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Nutanix cracks its first $100m quarter

Detective Emil
Headmaster

Please sir...

What does Nutanix actually do?

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Swedish sysadmins reach for the hex key, reassemble services after weekend DDoS

Detective Emil

My guess is that it's something to do with Swedish publishers plan summer ‘Block Party’ to thwart ad blockers, reported a few days ago in El Reg.

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Hey Windows 10, weren't you supposed to help PC sales?

Detective Emil
Meh

Maybe Win 10 did help PC sales

In a similar way to Why didn't quantitative easing produce huge inflation?, maybe if there had been no Win 10, PC sales would really have fallen through the floor. Who can say? But Canute may be a better analogy.

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GitHubber wants to revive the first Unix in a PDP-7 emulator

Detective Emil
Pirate

UNSW has form

It was from UNSW that Lions' Commentary on UNIX 6th Edition snuck out, despite the best efforts of Bell Labs' lawyers.

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Bitcoin's governance bungles stain the blockchain's reputation

Detective Emil
Alert

Plan to Throw One Away

Chapter 11 of the only management book I ever enjoyed, Fred Brooks' "The Mythical Man Month". Too bad the adherents of Bitcoin didn't get the memo.

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Winning Underhand C Contest code silently tricks nuke inspectors

Detective Emil
Headmaster

Re: horses for courses

C makes it easy to shoot yourself in the foot; C++ makes it harder, but when you do it blows your whole leg off. Stroustrup (See link for his scholarly gloss.)

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Facebook Messenger: All your numbers are belong to us

Detective Emil
Alert

Facebook: Your plastic pal who's fun to be with

The Fishbowl has already said it, so I don't have to.

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ISPs: UK.gov should pay full costs of Snooper's Charter hardware

Detective Emil
Big Brother

Re: Depressing.

Are all UK home secretaries unpleasant people before they take up the role, or do they suddenly become nasty on assuming office? If the latter, what's the mechanism? Perhaps something like Terry Pratchet's proposed Kingon/Queon effects the transfer from the old to the new incumbent. If it were to travel faster than light, that would be an added bonus, as home secretaries seem to be right behind breaking the laws of physics (while imposing many others).

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Hackers add exploit kit to article asking 'Is cyber crime out of control?'

Detective Emil

Betteridge's law of headlines

At last! A counterexample.

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Facebook conjures up a trap for the unwary: scanning your camera for your friends

Detective Emil
Black Helicopters

Re: There's an opt out...?

Face recognition is fairly expensive, so it's hard to do in a way that would work acceptably (time, memory use, battery impact) on everything, including low-end Android kit, without sending something to a server farm. Both Android and iOS ship with face detection frameworks, but you have to use third party IP for face detection. If your Android device happens to have a Snapdragon (S4 or better) CPU, Qualcomm can help you; on iOS, you'd love to be able to get at Apple's proprietary image signal processor to do the job but, AFAICT, Apple won't let you. So what I'd do is pick out possible faces using the built-in framework, and send just those image fragments to the server farm. Less scope for blackmail, but still greater than zero.

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PC sales will rise again, predicts Intel, but tablets are toast

Detective Emil
Meh

It must have been dark in that hall …

… because Kirk Skaugen was sure whistling loudly.

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The only GOOD DRONE is a DEAD DRONE. Y'hear me, scumbags?!

Detective Emil
Mushroom
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The battle of Cupertino: Jailbreakers do it for freedom, not cash

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Huh?

… without a jailbreak you are not able to do any advanced security study …

Seems a bit circular: "Because it's secure, we can't study its security". Besides, I would have thought that attempting to find a jailbreak came under the heading of "security study".

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To save mobile web, we must destroy JavaScript, HTML and CSS

Detective Emil
Black Helicopters

If this means that Google the ever-benificent learns any more about me, I'm dead against it.

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iPhone 6s and 6s Plus: Harder, faster and they'll give you a buzz

Detective Emil

Don’t know what I was waiting for

Maybe you still haven't found what you were looking for — last year an unwanted U2 album, this year a marginally-enthickened iPhone.

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Architect of UK’s hated Care.data scheme quits NHS, flees from Britain

Detective Emil
Big Brother

Pay no attention to that spook behind the curtain

The scheme has been subject to severe delays ...

His life will be easier in Oz, where such things seem just to get rammed through. (One of many antipodean El Reg stories on the topic.)

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Euro Commission wants to pick your brains on telcos and net access

Detective Emil
Meh

Open government? Ah, not that kind of open …

For a start it would be nice if the explanatory documents were not in a Microsoft-proprietary format.

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Vodafone 'fesses up to hack of journalist's phone, denies 'improper behaviour'

Detective Emil
Black Helicopters

Surely it's acceptable use?

Im surprised that Vodaphone has not claimed that the contract that the journalist signed with them allowed ransacking: see Beware Vodafone's Draconian "Acceptable Use Policy" on Soylent News. (UK contract, but I doubt Oz's is better.)

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Parallels Desktop 11 brings Windows 10 and Cortana to Mac

Detective Emil

Re: Ransomware

VM Ware was much worse when it came to updates. They're already trailing that a new version will be needed for El Capitan

VMware says Fusion 7 already runs El Capitan today, but it’s not considered a ‘supported’ version. This seems to be the case: I'm running it under the El Capitan Public Beta and it seems to work. Not that I'm doing anything terribly stressful to it. I suppose that, if I were, and if it broke, I would not be able to get support. (In particular, I've not tried Windows 10 on it: Windows 7 is fine for what I want.)

Turning things upside down, VMware Fusion 7 on OS X Yosemite supports El Capitan VMs — although, again, I have not tried doing anything too ambitious from inside one.

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Full duplex! Bristol boffins demo Tx and Rx on the same frequency AT THE SAME TIME

Detective Emil

While cancellation of 50dB is certainly impressive, I can see why the researchers are advocating it as a technology for future picocells. A typical mobile phone transmits at up to 27dBm, and should be usable with a received signal of -95dBm. That's a difference of 122dB. Closer to a base station, where transmit power could be dialled back to 20dBm and the received signal comes in at -60dBm, there's a difference of 80dB. Even with 50dB of cancellation, that gets you a thousand times more interference than signal.

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Malvertising set to wreak one BEELLION dollars in damage this year

Detective Emil
Meh

Serve yourself

Invincea's report contains no justification for the unstated $250 average cost to victims of each and every impression that underlies its scary headline figure of over half a billion dollars of damage. For example, as this refers specifically to Cryptowall, mobile device users (in the majority in Blighty, according to a recent report) and Mac users (even those with Flash installed and, I know, a minority) are immune: the report discusses only Windows. Even Windows users with up-to-date malware protection have a good chance of dodging the bullet: after all, the report reassuringly describes how Invincea's software nullified the threat; it's just conceivable that its competitors could do the same.

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Typewriters suck. Yet we're infinitely richer for those irritating machines

Detective Emil
Coffee/keyboard

O Roneo, Roneo, wherefore art thou, Roneo?

16
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Thirty five Flash Player holes plugged (and there's one quick fix)

Detective Emil

Re: BBC in the dark ages

If you fix your browser to tell the BBC It's an iPad, videos play fine. The user agent string you need is

Mozilla/5.0 (iPad; CPU OS 8_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/600.1.4 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/8.0 Mobile/12B410 Safari/600.1.4

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Audi RS3: Keep running up that hill, with no problems

Detective Emil
Megaphone

Damn you, El Reg

Now I've got to go and play some Kate Bush. Maybe I'll do it in the (rather more pedestrian) A4 (which does have the — rather nice — "sound package").

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Flash deserves to live, says Cisco security man

Detective Emil
Meh

Not a disinterested observer

At least two Cisco products still require Flash: Cisco Prime Infrastructure and Cisco Configuration Professional. There are probably others …

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Blessed are the cheesemakers, for they have defined the smidge

Detective Emil

Mandatory Pratchett reference

'Smidgen?' said the signaller, slowly. 'I don't think I know a code for smidgen…'

(Truckers, 1989)

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Antitrust this! EU Commish goes after HOLLYWOOD’s big guns

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Whittle while you work?

The opening paragraph does not list Disney among the Commission's targets, yet the end of the story quotes Disney bluster. What's going on?

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Flash zero-day monster Angler dominates exploit kit crime market

Detective Emil

Re: BBC

If you change your browser ID to "Mozilla/5.0 (iPad; CPU OS 8_1 like Mac OS X) AppleWebKit/600.1.4 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/8.0 Mobile/12B410 Safari/600.1.4", the BBC thinks you're coming from an iPad and serves you MPEG4.

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Reg scribe feels disturbance in the force at secret Empire Strikes Back screening

Detective Emil

Re: £80 actually

You might want to look at the prices for reasonably good seats at a London musical. £75 plus booking fee is around what you can expect to pay. (Not that that's not eye-watering…) I'll bet the bar prices are comparable too.

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Ubuntu daddy Mark Shuttleworth loses fight to cancel $20m bank fee

Detective Emil
Black Helicopters

Capital flight

Well, assuming that the money was held in local currency, he's still doing better than if he'd left it in South Africa: the Rand was trading at around eight to the US dollar in 2008; now it's at twelve or so.

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Facebook Moments app NOT COMING to a mobile device near EU soon

Detective Emil
Devil

Re: Facebook: The new big Brother

As El reg has reported, Belgium's going after them for hoovering up data relating to non-members/people who are not logged in. Allez les Diables Rouges!

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Confusion reigns as Bundestag malware clean-up staggers on

Detective Emil
Mushroom

Not my idea of fun

Kaspersky hints at the "nuke from orbit" procedure needed to get rid of its recent infection by an in-memory Duqu 2.0 APT on page 33 of this exhaustive report. Basically

1) Identify Internet gateway and install hosts used by infection.

2) Simulate power outage — cut power to everything simultaneously.

3) Isolate gateways and install hosts from Internet and internal network.

4) Bring up gateways and install hosts, disinfect and harden them.

5) Give gateways and install hosts access to each other and Internet and observe beadily.

6) When safe, bring everything else back up. Well, before doing that you might want take steps to harden everything else too, but, without the gateways to act as first-level installers, this particular infection can't reestablish itself. Until the authors start to use a different day-zero to get in.

Glad I'm not in this particular game.

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Europol operation crushes phiendish global phishing ring

Detective Emil
Headmaster

Police have arrested 49 men from Spain, Nigeria, and Cameroon […]

Almost half of those arrested hail from Italy, 18 are from Poland and 10 from Spain.

These two statements literally do not add up.

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But... I... like... the... PAIN! Our secret addiction to 'free' APIs

Detective Emil

Report of Silverlight's death is an exaggeration

[Microsoft] has killed off Silverlight

I don't think so. Despite the awful smell (which to be fair, was there all along), and much speculation, there's been no official announcement that I can find.

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MIT bods' digital economy babblings are tosh. C'mon guys, Economics 101

Detective Emil
Meh

Modern poetry

Of course, the poets procurable following the perfection of pin production processes pen pieces like Beasley Street. But later they come up with Beasley Boulevard. Which kind of backs up Mr. Worstall's position.

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Gremlins in the first six months? It's the seller's problem – EU court

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Re: Great that's Apple F*&^ed then

It's a puzzle. My daughter has the knack of destroying Apple cables, and I don't. But I've never caught her being notably evil to one. My guess is that Apple tends to err on the shiny side of svelte versus bomb-proof. There are of course bomb-proof aftermarket cables available, but everybody who needs one has first to destroy and potentially whinge about the first-party one they got in the box with the Apple device.

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It's not over 'til Saturn's spongy moon sings: Cassini probe set for final Hyperion fly-by

Detective Emil
Alert

Re: Altogether now...

Looks like a wasps' nest to me.

Note: I can thoroughly recommend a life in which one does not learn what a wasps' nest looks like.

16
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Mozilla signing vetted add-ons as thoughts turn to security

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

What walled gardens?

Both Safari and Chrome allow me to download extensions from any old where. I just tried it with something (I hope is) innocuous. Safari gives me a limp "only download from sites you trust" click-through; Chrome does not warn at all — although, unlike Safari, it does tell me what privileges the extension has grabbed. I poked around the files for signs of signing, and found none.

So, if Mozilla enforces a walled garden, I think they'll be in the vanguard.

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Mozilla: We don't give a damn about cheap smartphones

Detective Emil
Meh

Just OK

The trouble is, I dont "love Firefox". It's OK if it's the only browser that happens to be installed, or if the browser I normally use isn't behaving, but otherwise … meh. That emotion's not going to sell me on a phone.

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Hey! Want a FREE TOASTER that makes BITCOIN? What? You DO?

Detective Emil
Headmaster

Re: Where does the electricity go?

Electricity is around four times as expensive per kilowatt hour as gas on normal tariffs. Heating oil and LPG come in around the same price as gas. So using toasters to heat your home is not a smart idea. Well, unless, perhaps, you have a gas toaster. (Mmmm. Almost ten toasty kilowatts…)

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DEFCON 23 to host Internet of Things slaughterfest

Detective Emil

Re: Fancy Bosch Oven

True, but surely it would be nice if it could use NTP to get the correct time for those 5 clocks.

It would be cheaper to put in a low frequency time receiver tuned to DCF-77, which reaches 2,000km from Germany (like what my over-engineered German car has). Or MSF-60 if you don't want to have to apply a correction to get UK time. But that's old, unexciting technology.

Also, whilst I can't see how it would help with proper cooking, it might be nice if you had a ready meal and could just snap the barcode with your phone and set the correct time and temperature.

I have to concede that a long wave receiver's not going to help with that. However, a QR code could carry all the information needed without requiring an Internet look-up.

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Secret Bezos delivery helicopters operate from mystery Canadian base to evade US regulators

Detective Emil
Black Helicopters

Isn't this embagoed until tomorrow?

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Health & Safety is the responsibility of Connor's long-suffering girlfriend

Detective Emil
Coat

Sales opportunity

I look forward to being able to purchase Stob H&S toilet rolls through Cash'n'Carrion.

Mine's the one on the hook on the door.

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The voters hate Google. Heeeeyyyy... how about a 'Google Tax'?

Detective Emil
Pint

Going after big companies while exempting small

See also recent coverage of the UK's tax exemption for small cider makers, which the EU is likely to determine as amounting to illegal state aid.

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Why Wi-Fi won't solve mobile telcos' data dilemma

Detective Emil

Some quick research shows that 42GHz backhaul is limited to about 2km if you're after five nines carrier-grade reliability — heavy rain hits 42GHz hard. Is that far enough?

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MELTDOWN: Samsung, Sony not-so-smart TVs go titsup for TWO days

Detective Emil
Headmaster

According to sleuths commenting on the outage, the TVs expect to talk to a machine with the IP address 23.66.247.46 to confirm they have a working internet connection.

Well, not really. As the output from host shows, the address resolves to a node in Akamai's Content Distribution Network. These things change according to time and location. Currently I get a different IP according to whether I'm coming in from home or the office (just 3km away). To expect a single address to work, and to keep working, for everybody around the world (or even just in Blighty) is optimistic.

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Google looks to scrape away scumware, as only it can

Detective Emil
Devil

I impatiently look forward to Adobe and Oracle being monstered.

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WATCH IT: It's watching you as you WATCH IT (Your Samsung telly is)

Detective Emil
Happy

See also the current Joy of Tech posting.

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