* Posts by JimmyPage

1705 posts • joined 5 Mar 2010

Mastercard facial recog-ware will unlock your money using SELFIES

JimmyPage
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Meh

What part of this is news ?

Face recognition - old hat

Face recognition as security - old hat (my Android tablet has done it for 2+ years)

Payment verification - old hat

Biometric payment verification - old hat.

Or is it a Friday grump ?

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Silly Google's Photos app labelled BLACK PEOPLE as GORILLAS

JimmyPage
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FAIL

So how behind *are* Google

Having seen IBMs take on artificial vision (http://www-01.ibm.com/common/ssi/cgi-bin/ssialias?infotype=PM&subtype=SP&htmlfid=YTD03119USEN/ ) at Hursley, it seems Google are still in the 1960s when it comes to processing.

Most impressive things I saw, when they ran the network over a video of a park scene, were:

1) Although it had never been told what a skateboard was, it correctly labelled a skateboader in the same box as "cyclist". So it had worked out that "cyclist = human on wheels" and then re-applied that to the skateboarder.

2) Correctly following a cyclist dismounting, and changing the label from cyclist to pedestrian.

3) Correctly identifying a static shape (person sitting on wall) as human (technically very high probability of being a human).

Spoiler alert: some if not all of this project is funded by the DoD ...

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Revive the Nathan Barley Quango – former Downing Street wonk

JimmyPage
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FAIL

There's a reason for that ...

There is a chronic funding gap in the UK for companies creating digital media content, as our venture capital funds do not typically invest in this sector.

UK Venture capitalists don't do investing - what a curious idea. They do do short term profits over any idea of long term growth.

As a result, while US companies such as Vice, Netflix, Hulu ...have attracted huge amounts of investment, comparable British digital content companies have not.

That's because they have a decent track record. Sopranos, Breaking Bad, True Detective, The Wire, Mad Men. All top-drawer stuff. I can't see UK TV - particularly the commercial players - investing in a 5-year drama that means you have to think. Not when shite like Dapper Laughs managed to get commissioned.

Me ? I just gave Richard Herring £30 via Kickstarter, to be able to enjoy his excellent series of podcasts on video. I think that's the way the market is moving.

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Warning flags were raised over GDS farm payments system – yet it still failed

JimmyPage
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Mushroom

Re: Why do government projects fail?

One word.

Politics.

Where reality and response are rarely seen together, as ideology gets in the way. The classic example of this, writ large, is the Alice-in-Wonderland approach to drugs, whereby the response is far out of proportion to the harm. Something experts (paid by the government) have repeatedly pointed out.

With regards to IT, it depends what the original (political) premise was.

It use to be held up as a paradigm of "government" IT gone wrong - the Nimrod fiasco. Rooted in the fact that the [Labour] government of the day had to posture about buying a "British" solution, even though (a) the RAF wanted AWACS and (b) AWACS was readily available, whereas Nimrod was vapourware. Cue a decade of bunfighting (3,000 + annual specification changes - or 10 a day), as the RAF insisted on benchmarking Nimrod against their requirements (which AWACs satisfied) and Nimrod kept failing. In the 1980s (when I studied it for a module in my degree) the £3billion wasted was unheard of. Nowadays £3billion won't buy half a non-working Universal Credit system.

Oh, and no government project has *ever* failed. Cancelled. Respecified. Replaced. Renewed. Yes. But if you look carefully, no government project has ever failed, or been classed as failed. even GDS will be written up as "unsatisfactory", "unable to meet expectations", "unable to deal with updated requirements", yes, yes, yes. But "failed" ? Never.

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We forget NOTHING, the Beeb thunders at Europe

JimmyPage
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Mushroom

We won't forget Max "spank" Mosley's dad was a Nazi sympathise

And ?

Who gives a shit.

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Bitcoin, schmitcoin. Let's play piggyback on the blockchain

JimmyPage
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Vague memories of a sci-fi story

Where there's a universal blockchain, and everyone uses it for everything.

(Obviously the story is because something goes wrong).

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Amazon enrages authors as it switches to 'pay-per-page' model

JimmyPage
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Coat

Hmmm ... compare and contrast ...

people object to paying for tracks they don't want on albums. But apply the same model to books ....

I await the inevitable downvotes from people without my sense of irony.

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Spiceworks in WTF-class social log-in SECURITY BLUNDER

JimmyPage
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WTF?

I just don't get this "sign in with Facebook"

Why should I want to let Facebook know what other sites I use ?

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This whopping 16-bit computer processor is being built by hand, transistor by transistor

JimmyPage
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Reminds me at Uni ...

I programmed a bit-slice CPU ...

And hand soldered my final year project.

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US students prevail in rocket-powered egg challenge

JimmyPage
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Pint

Well done all !

And great to see some gender balance in engineering. Y'all deserve one of these ------------?

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Facebook and Twitter queen Taylor Swift: Facebook and Twitter are RUBBISH

JimmyPage
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I feel guilty now ...

I had kinda wrongly assumed anodyne American "pop" "star" - sort of Justin Beiber without the testosterone (?) and consigned her to the appropriate part of my brain.

Seems I was wrong - certainly keep an ear out in future - her Wiki entry (usual caveats) has some remarkably high praise.

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Virgin Media starts its broadband-of-the-gaps fibre rollout

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Sigh ...

20+ years ago, our street was cabled by Videotron. It was quite a comical exercise ... the sales guys were running 2 days ahead of the engineers.

Anyway, at the same time, a friend moved into a new build house, a mile away. When I first saw him, there were no pavements, and temporary roads (apparently they do a single re-tarmac on exit).

I asked if they were laying cables while building the development. His face fell, and he said he'd spoken to Videotron, and they had it on their 1995-2000 list.

I asked if my friend had discussed with the housebuilder about liaising with cable companies to pre-cable new developments. He said he had, but decided to stop when the person they pointed him at said "cable TV - what's that then ?".

My brother claimed he emigrated to the US for the weather. I never believed him.

Obviously (I wonder if Mr. Worstall would agree) the cheapest part of providing cable is the actual digging up of the roads/pavements, since this is the part no-one has tried to minimise. I say this, because NONE of the 10 or so new build estates I looked at last year had fibre. Moreover, none of them had PLANS for fibre in the next 3 years.

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At last, switching between rubbish broadband providers now easier

JimmyPage
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Stop

When did it become a thing for illegal behaviour

to get a fluffy name ?

Surely all the elements of "slamming" add up to conspiracy to defraud, or gain pecuniary advantage by deception.

It reminds me of criminal assault being rebranded "happy slapping"

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It's OK – this was an entirely NEW type of cockup, says RBS

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Too late

some people have already thought this

http://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/3/2015/06/17/natwest_hit_by_another_rbs_it_cockup/#c_2546376

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NatWest IT cock-up sees 600,000 transactions go 'missing'

JimmyPage
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Holmes

Idle speculation ...

For such a bug story, things have gone quiet on this ...

I have a sneaking suspicion that whatever the cause, it's somehow related to the 2012 outage. In particular to the fact that the minute the regulator had turned their back, all the "promises" (i.e. "lessons learned") disappeared into thin air, and it was back to BAU ...

Which would lead to an interesting future for RBS ... if a £56,000,000 fine wasn't enough* to teach them a lesson first time, how much should it be this time ? And will it cause the FCA to contemplate stiffer fines a priori - on the justifiable grounds that otherwise they'll be ignored.

And what's all of this doing to Gorgeous Georges plans for flogging off RBS ? How much sweeter will he need to make the deal, if any prospective buyer thinks they're buying into a future of cock-ups ?

*sounds a stiff fine - unless the outrage saved a few hundred million, in which case it's the cost of doing business.

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JimmyPage
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WTF?

Fool me once, shame on you etc ...

oh, and another thing ...

would it be fair to presume all these people twitterplaining (a new verb wot I have invented, hoping it will catch on) have only had accounts since 2012 ? Because what about the 2012 cock-up wasn't quite bad enough for you to have moved your accounts ?

In which case, the question has to be : you opened your account, after the last car-crash cock-up

Why ???????

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JimmyPage
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FAIL

NatWest are not a bank ....

they are an IT house which does banking.

This was the almost unanimous verdict of El Reg readers discussing the 2012 failure. With a clarion call that bean counters recognise that IT (and it associated infrastructure) are essential components of their operation, not an ancillary part which can be hived off, like the catering.

I really hope any journalist on the receiving end of a "Lessons have been learned" puff piece, just finish off by turning to camera saying "no they haven't".

We need a "FAIL" icon big enough to spread over 2 monitors.

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Sharing Economy latest: Women's BREAST MILK is the new 'liquid GOLD' of the internet

JimmyPage
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I didn't know that fathers could breastfeed

Anatomically, there's no reason they couldn't

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Male_lactation

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JimmyPage
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Happy

Sickly stuff

as I recall ...

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Disk is dead, screeches Violin – and here's how it might happen

JimmyPage
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Stop

The RIGHT format won out. Unlike the VHS/Betamax argument

The reason VHS won out was that while Sony was paying engineers to (successfully) improve Betamax, JVC/Philips et al were paying salesmen to negotiate "VHS only" deals for movie rentals with the studios.

The result was the consumer saw the VHS section of their local video rental store far outnumbered the Betamax, and bought (rented) their equipment accordingly.

Why do you think Sony when on a massive spending spree in the late 80s and 90s buying up - wait for it - content providers ?

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Furious Flems fling privacy rule book at Facebook

JimmyPage
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Mushroom

Re: Please Cut Out The Cutesie Headlines

"Apart from anything else, it is infantile."

You know the old lady who gets on the bus with a cake on her head, and smells of wee ?

That's your girlfriend that is.

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YOU ARE THE DRONE in Amazon's rumoured new parcel delivery plan

JimmyPage
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WTF?

If I were devising such a scheme, I'd probably limit it to long-term Amazon customers.

(1) they are more likely to be "up for it" (because they are long term Amazon customers)

(2) they are pretty well known to Amazon (see above).

Is it just me, or is the level of thought commentards are applying *before* posting dropping ?

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LastPass got hacked: Change your master password NOW

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Nice try, but you're not old enough.

It was Cowley, in The Professionals episode The Rack

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JimmyPage
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Boffin

Once again ...

part of the problem with passwords - internet passwords specifically - is the total lack of anything remotely resembling an RFC on the best practices to implement password-based authentication.

Is the password complexity sufficient ?

Is the password stored in plaintext ? (Because some are, so you can be emailed it if you forget)

If the password is encrypted, can it be decrypted ?

If so by who ?

Is a regular password change mandated ?

etc etc etc

I wonder, if I was to setup a site requiring a login to be created, and harvested all the email address/password combinations people used, how far I could get trying those credentials elsewhere.

However, before I did that, I'd also wonder if anyone else had done it before me ?

Quick question. What's the ISO reference for web-based authentication ?

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JimmyPage
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Meh

So, LastPass got hacked ...

(I will buy a virtual beer for anyone who can name the programme, and character for this next quote !)

"A patient died. And now you want to close the whole hospital !"

I use LastPass. It's cloudiness is an asset - it means I can use *any* machine to access secure sites.

I accept I am trading convenience for security. I've evaluated the risks, and decided they are worth it.

Current count is >300 unique passwords stored, none of which is less than 12 characters, and all of which are generated nonsense.

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Zionists stole my SHOE, claims Muslim campaigner

JimmyPage
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Big Brother

Re: "Zersetzung"

A trick also used by the Manson family. They called it "creepy crawling"

https://www.reddit.com/r/todayilearned/comments/2g0k08/til_the_manson_family_did_burglary_missions_they/

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British banks consider emoji as password replacement

JimmyPage
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Stop

Yawn ...

Seems a retread of the idea (20 years ago) to use photos instead of numbers with the customer knowing which 4 they had logged as their password.

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Sun's out, guns out: Plucky Philae probot WAKES UP ... hits 'snooze'

JimmyPage
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Thumb Up

Cost of launch

Is anyone seriously looking at Arthur C. Clarkes space elevator ?

Total respect to all involved, by the way. It's why I did a BSc.

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'Snowden risked lives' fearfest story prompts sceptical sneers

JimmyPage
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Flame

Too late was the cry

80% of the public will only remember the first story, regardless of whatever truth emerges subsequently.

Why do you think control of the media makes power ?

There are still people - the majority, by the way - who will tell you that Jean Charles de Menezes (RIP :( ) was

-wearing a heavy coat

-vaulted the barriers

-did not respond when challenged by armed police.

despite the court-verified FACTS:

-was wearing no jacket (just a T-shirt)

-passed through barriers normally

-police never issued a warning for him to ignore.

I've always had my doubts about the shouty cunt "interviewed" so quickly on the day. Has he ever been seen since ?

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Don't panic. Stupid smart meters are still 50 YEARS away

JimmyPage
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Unhappy

both of which can be arranged .....

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Apple store staffers probed like 'criminals', lawsuit claims

JimmyPage
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Stop

Was it Dell, or HP

that once had a box near the exit with all the commonly stolen goodies (chips, boards IIRC) free for staff to take ?

The logic being it was cheaper to give the staff what they'd steal than setup a morale-busting infrastructure to try and stop it

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Future Range Rovers will report pot-holes directly to councils

JimmyPage
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Flame

Oh for fucks sake

The problem with potholes in the UK is not because there's any lack of channels to report them. It's the fact that once reported, fuck all happens.

We had an ever growing crater in our road for 2 years - reported by every resident many times. It only got fixed when I enquired about purchasing the mineral rights.

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Nude celeb iCloud hack: Feds seize Chicago man's computers

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Re: Someone else?

There was a case in the UK a few years ago where plod kicked in a door based on an IP address.

Problem was they hadn't noticed the time zone offset, and got the wrong house.

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HMRC WLTM partner, GSOH, to help it escape the Aspire black hole

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Do I remember correctly

last time they were forced to pay firms to bid, because everyone knew the tender would go back to the incumbent, and weren't willing to waste money on a tender ?

If so, I'll start to put my bid in. I reckon I could come up with a figure for £50,000. Although with such low aspirations I'm unlikely to get it. Probably more likely if I asked £500,000

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Don't believe the hype: When that DATA seems just too good

JimmyPage
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watching-fox-news-makes-you-less-informed-than-watching-no-news-at-all"

Kinda reminds me of Stewart Lees observation that 500 years ago, the man who read everything, would know everything. Whereas today, a man reading everything would know nothing. ("Toilet Book").

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EU-US safe harbour talks are lingering just outside port, says US

JimmyPage
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Meh

Interesting

this story appears next to the HMRC/Google story

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HMRC ditches Microsoft for Google, sends data offshore

JimmyPage
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Mushroom

Re: Why not

The problem with that (and it's been tried) is it quickly becomes a mandate for said UK entity to treble it's prices - and not worry too much about things "working" since the customer (UK plc) can't go elsewhere.

Presumably you practice what you preach, so *you* only buy UK-sourced goods ?

Those of us old enough to remember British Leyland shudder in horror at the mantra "I'm backing Britain."

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Google blames Flash for hobbling Chrome, says it sucks (too much power)

JimmyPage
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Flame

Is Flash not dead yet ?

Seriously ?

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WikiLeaks offers $100k for copies of the Trans-Pacific Partnership – big biz's secret govt pact

JimmyPage
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Thumb Up

Interesting development ....

not the TTIP bit. The crowdfunding of the $100,000.

Could we see the start of a more crowdfunded political system ? Where citizens engage with notes not votes ?

Could this be the end of party hegemony, where people can individually support points of view that when aggregated don't map to any single party ?

Speaking as someone who happily (and successfully) crowdfunded Richard Herring to produce 18 video podcast interviews with various comedians, I can see it gaining traction. For my £30, I get 18 HD podcasts - each at least an hour long, knowing that the only editor between the show and me is Herring. No TV execs. No sponsors. No plugs for latest books.

Let's put it this way, having read this article, I'd happily donate $20.

How long before governments the world round make it illegal to crowdfund for political purposes ? Probably with some draconian anti-terror laws ?

And what's the betting the UK will be the first.

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Sysadmins rebel over GUI-free install for Windows Server 2016

JimmyPage
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Linux

All of a sudden, my decision to learn Linux

a few years back looks less of a waste of time.

SSH - bring it on. Used it for years (and variants like X forwarding over it)

Headless servers - standard Linux setup.

But then I started on a ZX80, so command line interfaces never scared me.

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Fanbois designing Windows 10 – where's it going to end?

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Was it Ben Franklin

who commented that democracy is two wolves and a sheep voting on lunch ?

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KFC takes legal axe to eight-legged mutant chicken claims

JimmyPage
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Mushroom

How could anyone believe there's any credibility in the rumour ...

Well, people believe in sky fairies granting wishes, which frankly takes more suspension of intelligence.

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Dutch efforts to decapitate Pirate Bay could end up before ECJ

JimmyPage
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FAIL

bear in mind not all torrents are copyright infringements

You know that.

I know that.

However, the vast majority of the Great Public that *think* they know "something about the internet" have already equated "torrent" with "dodgy". It's probably handled by the same part of the brain (or Daily Mail for folk that choose not to use theirs) which equates "nudity" with "sex".

However, the crackdown on TPB must be having some effect. It took me twice as long today to find the torrent I wanted, as it would have last year.

Yes that's right, all of 10 seconds (I type slowly).

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Google launches native Android Smart Lock password manager

JimmyPage
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Re: Storing your passwords on the Internet

The problem with absolutes like that, is you can end up losing out moving forwards. It's not right. It's not fair. But shit happens.

If you accept (as I do) that the worst outcome possible is to have a single password you use everywhere, then the risk of storing them in a cloudy vault must be lower ? Maybe not much. But enough to justify the notion. Although I am well aware of the dichotomy of having a single password to access all your passwords ...

I wonder how much involvement the law enforcement agencies have with cloud password offerings. Not from a tinfoil hat perspective - quite the opposite. It's in their interests to ensure cloudy passwords stay safe. Imagine if Lastpass had a hack, and admitted that 100s of 1000s of users had their logins snaffled. How many court cases would be lost to the reasonable doubt when the defence claim their client didn't do it, as all their logins were stolen ......

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Google spins up 'FREE, unlimited' cloud photo storage 4 years before ad giant nixes it

JimmyPage
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Big Brother

Am I the only one that wonders ...

what Google is laying itself open to here.

Hoover up a load of images from millions of random devices.

*Some* of them are going to contravene a law somewhere .....

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EU net neutrality could kneecap the Tories' opt-out pr0n filter plans

JimmyPage
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FAIL

Oh dear

If the EU is as keen to keep the UK in as they say, they *really* aren't doing themselves any favours with stories like this.

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Win Phone to outgrow smartmobe market for next four years

JimmyPage
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Boffin

Other than it being in MP3 or WMA I don't see how it's any more difficult than Android...?

Because it's *Windows* and therefore immediately unusable. Irrespective of reality.

Smartphones (and their associated OSes) are to [some] a little like cars and "trim kits" used to be in the 90s. Your Ford fanbois would sneer at the Peugot Playboys, and both would ROTFLMAO when a Golf Gayboy walked in.

and despite the fact that all cars have engines, gearlevers and pretty consistent instrumentation, the owner/driver of one would invariably "discover" that you had to do something "harder" in the other two marques.

Listen to a Linux v. Windows "debate". It's the same thing.

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Nokia getting there with HERE as rivals talk up price

JimmyPage
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Re: HERE app on my Windows Phone

I don't know. But I do know mine has "learnt" my routes. It now no longer corrects my shortcuts on/off the motorway.

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JimmyPage
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Happy

HERE app on my Windows Phone

is a perfect turn by turn sat-nav.

that's all.

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Last flying Avro Vulcan, XH558, prepares for her swan song

JimmyPage
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Happy

All these misty eyed posts

and no mention of the Harrier ?

Now *there* was a engineering marvel AND beauty.

And the mention of Concorde has to be a cue to comment that when there was some interchange between the Apollo and Concorde engineers, the Apollo engineers conceded the Concorde engineers had the real challenges. Including (but not limited to) how to slow supersonic air down to almost zero over the space of just over a metre. (Spolier alert - they did it).

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