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* Posts by BongoJoe

451 posts • joined 3 Apr 2010

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ICANN can't hand over Iran's internet, bomb victims told

BongoJoe
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Re: Americans

Oh yes. And the ridiculous health and safety warnings because of all these.

For example yesterday I took delivery of a new drum stool and on the sheet of paper with the H&S stuff there was only room for six warnings in each language.

The sixth warning was, and I kid you not, a warning about playing the drums during an earthquake as things could topple over...

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Microsoft stands on shore as tablet-laden boat sails away

BongoJoe
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Re: I May Not Be Typical

Good points. My tablet uses are mostly web browsing, Skype and the Kindle app.

I find 'typing' them on a total pain so I am reduced to point and swipe and therefore I am mostly using the tablet in a more passive manner. Great to read stuff and to watch some videos on YouTube and, er, that's it for me.

I couldn't bear to write serious, or even half serious code on one. As for other day to day computing uses that I use a desktop (or many desktops) for I am not going to replace these machines to hammer databases to look at the racing form for, for example, the third day of Goodwood tomorrow.

Tablets are good but they won't replace the PC here. They'll just become another tool.

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MPs to sue UK.gov over 'ridiculous' EMERGENCY data snooping law

BongoJoe
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Re: So there actually *are*

Mine voted against it too. It's a shame that Elfyn Llwyd isn't going to stand at the next election as he's been a really good MP for the people.

He's the one who was behing the impeachment of Blair not too long ago and regarding this bill he was dead against it.

I haven't seen many good MPs in my life and Mr Llwyd is one of the small number.

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Motorist 'thought car had caught fire' as Adele track came on stereo

BongoJoe
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Re: Genuine reason.

I have a Landrover Freelander - yes, the Ken and Barbie design.

And I can assure you that nothing comes on the display when that catches fire. In fact the only warning system I had was when I pulled into the petrol station and saw the cashier and staff running in blind panic when I realised that something was amiss.

Of course, stopping meant that I then knew that something was wrong...

Anyway, a FIRE warning sign would have been nice.

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Hi-tech Fagin couple used Apple scam cash to fly pickpockets to UK

BongoJoe
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Re: To be fair....

...and perhaps there they should stay.

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Dungeons & Dragons relaunches with 'freemium' version 5.0

BongoJoe
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Re: Anyone remember Dragon Warriors?

You mentioned Simple Systems. Going to the other extreme does anyone remember The Empire of The Petal Throne?

Not only was it complete and complex it came with its own language.

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BongoJoe
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Re: Anyone remember Dragon Warriors?

Talking of simple systems: one couldn't get any simpler nor better than those in the MELEE rule book of the very underrated Fantasy Quest.

Perhaps even in those minimal days these were considered too minimal.

Yours still clutching his original copy of 'Red Bear White Moon'...

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BongoJoe
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Re: Paper shortages

"Okay, roll a new character."

"Doing that now"

"You're an ensign in the Space Corpse it seems"

"Hmm, I'll stay in three more years"

"Oh, look Admiral of the Fleet"

The original Traveller was great but flawed. The MegaTraveller sorted out a lot of the issues but by far the best was Snapshot, the Traveller add on close combat game.

Anyway, I prefered Runequest.

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'We screwed up' sighs Sony bigwig after gaming portals collapse in DNS cock-up riddle

BongoJoe
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Re: I KNOW HOW THE INTERNET WORKS.

If I don't know how the Internet works then there's always Stephen Fry's tweets to educate me.

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Mobile, cloud, social? Data? Nadella strings sexy words together

BongoJoe
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Re: Micro-who?

I would be curious as to know where you're going and what from.

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NASA: ALIENS and NEW EARTHS will be ours inside 20 years

BongoJoe
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Assuming that we will need physical bodies when travelling. It would be more efficient to change our form and then beetle off at the speed of light not needing ships, suits and zero-grav toilets and travel at 1G.

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'Apple is TERRIFIED of women’s bodies and women’s pleasure' – fresh tech sex storm

BongoJoe
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Re: Is this really Apple gender discrimination rubbing out

The story that I heard back in the late 70s was that Jobs was eating an apple at the time and they looked at it when they were deciding on the name and they chose that. Hence the bitemarks at the time.

I looks like one of those tastefless foam filled Washington apples to me. Certainly not a pomegranate.

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Get ready for LAYOFFS: Nadella's coma-inducing memo, with subtitles

BongoJoe
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Re: I can't believe

I remember companies that were too big around the back end of last century to vanish and, yet they managed to do that. Long lost firms like Borland who brought us a good C compiler and also the very excellent Delphi who made great products and, yet, over the years lost everything.

Microsoft it seemed then invulnerable. It's turning out that due to its size, like the dinosaurs, they just took longer to die off.

I look at what the company does now and I don't understand what it does any more. I don't know what it stands for and it's certainly a million miles away from the tech-savvy outfit of last century.

A shame, but there we go. There's perhaps a lesson in there somewhere if only I could be bothered to rake over the dying embers.

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UK gov rushes through emergency law on data retention

BongoJoe
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Re: @MrWibble - Words that are friends ...

It makes no difference what we call it; it soon will be sold off for overseas organisations to run.

At a cost to the taxpayer, of course.

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BongoJoe
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Re: What's the emergency?

I seem to remember a Philip K Dick novel in which the population were kept in shelters undeground as they were under threat.

I remember reading that when I was in short trousers and thought that it was too far fetched and that it would never happen.

And then I watched 'Brazil' where the government did its best to keep up the threat.

Again, I thought it could never happen. I can't even say that this is the thin edge of the wedge as we've seen that years ago.

This is wrong, all very wrong and it is enough to drive me to tears.

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BongoJoe
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Re: No problem for me then !

And the Masons

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UK's emergency data slurp: IT giants panicked over 'legal uncertainty'

BongoJoe
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"I hate to say it, but its becoming very hard to vote no in September."

I bet that people in Wales and England would also love to be independent of Westminster too.

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BongoJoe
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Re: Let's see if they do retire it in 2016.

Of course they will. After all they are equally going to repeal income tax after the Napoleonic Wars had concluded.

So, you see that, er...

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Say goodbye to the noughties: Yesterday’s hi-fi biz is BUSTED, bro

BongoJoe
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Re: Meh

I've got all my stuff on flac, played by Foobar out through USB into a MusicSreamer II DAC and into an 1980s Mission Cyrus II amp (with matching power supply) over van Damme cabling then out into a coule of half-decent Whardales (again VD cabling) and it sounds good even though the speakers will be upgraded later when I can find a nice cheap pair of Rogers speakers.

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TalkTalk talks itself into trouble with budget broadband package fibs

BongoJoe
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Re: In all fairness

My aunt had Talk Talk. She paid £16 a month for her free connection...

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BongoJoe
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...and I almost bought that cream

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Panic like it's 1999: Microsoft Office macro viruses are BACK

BongoJoe
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Agreed. The only JavaScript needed, or on any of my pages, is when there's a form then there's a simply bit of JavaScript to put the cursor into the first control.

Other than that I shun the beast entirely for a myraid of reasons.

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BongoJoe
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Re: Really Shitty Impractical Security Advice..

You, sir (or madam), provide a breath of freah air of reality to the proceedings.

Thank you.

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BongoJoe
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Re: The macro virus would spread into a user's Office template files

Ideally the styles should be in each of the template files rather than normal.dot.

In fact, I will go so far and stick my neck out and say that one should never touch normal.dot -- don't mess with the styles and don't put code in there. I have always viewed normal.dot as a half-arsed 'thing' invented by MS to do their own thing.

In the case of Word (which is clearly what we're talking about) I would put code in templates in the start-up folder (and there could be loads of .dot files in here with VBA depending on what the user wanted) and also code in each of the document template files. It is in these where I would put the styles.

I have always seen normal.dot as something that can be sacrififced and if the suite of templates has been made strong enough then everything the user needs is in there and if normal.dot ever gets nuked then no change will happen to the user's Word environment.

I have always seen Word VBA as more than just mere macros. On some of my clients' sites I have very complex code which drives everyting from Document Management, Contact Databases and about everything that one could think of.

VBA, if I may counter, isn't "instant" at all. Yes, one can do quick hacks and runs but it is also a fully fledged language and development environment. I see it as VB6 with an Office application clagged onto the front and a whole slew of inbuilt objects to play with. Kiddie stuff it needn't be. There's a very large business out there which has in their code, and they won't know it, a binary tree search all done with VBA.

It's a great environment. Please don't wish it nobbled.

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BongoJoe
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Re: I'm not dead yet! I don't want to go on that cart!!

Before long people will be asking for code to edit or even create .txt, .csv. .xml files and the rest.

I can't begin to think what I haven't done with VBA over the years. Like everything else it's a powerful tool and putting it into a sandbox is getting around the real problem -- users bringing files onto the machine to run in the first place.

The current restrictive policies that MS have in place at moment is all down to the time when we had the Melissa and the ILoveYou virus sometime back in the last century. But cutting off VBA at the knees because of some malignent software is like saying thae we ought to stop C and C# applications writing to the hard drive too because someone may do something naughty with it too.

And, yes, I have written VBS to edit templates. Why? For lots of clients, who may be small firms with minimal skills I used to supply templates for their office: Memo, Letter, Long Document, Fax (in those days) and so on. I would have the basic VBA in those templates but they may decide to change their forrmatting.

Rather than pester me all the time for changes I gave them a tool which would change their document templates; such as Styles, Paragraphing, Tabs and Numbering. All those horrible things that most people couldn't understand or found it hard to use the inbuilt dialog boxes. So, in these cases I improved upon it by making them a VBA application which would do it for them.

In the days of the 'improved' Office interface such tools are even more useful than before. So, why stop VBA from editing .dot and .dotx files?

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That AMAZING Windows comeback: Wow – 0.5% growth in 2015

BongoJoe
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Re: What's to look forward to?

"you should look to your own project to see what might be causing it, rather than condemning Windows 7."

Are you are assuming, or asserting, that I haven't done that already? Beleive me, I have gone through the code where it handles the various database objects time and time again and it makes no difference.

I've recoded the way the databases are handled from the queries to the connections and it makes no avail. Shove lots of thousands of calls through and then it grinds to a halt. I've had others look at the code and there's nothing that they can find that's wrong.

Now, if I am having problems with my little data industry and people in other industries are having the same problems then does it sound like it's a problem with my code in my Windows environment when some of the other major companies have the same issue.

This is the problem with MS; they come up with a great marketing triumph and tell us that we should move over to it and we say, okay, but what about these porting issues with your tools on your platforms using your methodologies using your guidelines and in every way prescribed by your company and it's now broken, what are we to do? The only real response we've had from Microsoft is "oh, just port your massive projects into our new bloaty language and you'll be fine".

And that's not too hard to believe is it? I've done UNIX back in the days of SCO and the various AT&T implementations and it was so much different. But this is how it is with MS; they give you a tool, tell you to use it and then leap off onto a new venture and tell you to come along and catch up when their new tools don't work with their old tools

As I have said before; these projects work if they're itty-bitty bits of code with a few thousand lines. Start to get something large in there and it breaks apart. And heaven help you if you make the mistake of upgrading your browswer because that really truly breaks VS6 so one is stuck on IE9 if one is using any web controls in the code. And that's nothing to do with the developer, his environment it's just the way that Microsoft barge ahead and just do cursory testing of what's gone before.

At time I am sure that they've not tested anything more than printf("Hello, World"); in their labs but that's the way that it is. You may be safely insulated from this mess in the Unix world and, truly, I wish that I were there with you. But the fact remains that try to open a large project in VS6 and compile it under W7 and you're going to have serious issues.

I, and many others, have found this. And, as I have said the Official Solution is to rewrite the whole bloody lot. Oh yes, W7 is good for playing on, I agree. I'm off to blast something into little bits now whilst my code compiles on my old machine next to me.

Beer o'clock someone said?

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BongoJoe
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Re: What's to look forward to?

> h4rm0ny

"I honestly find it hard to believe that projects cannot be compiled on Windows 7 or that Windows 7 cannot run any "decent sized project". I also find your comments that Windows 7 takes six or more times as long to run the same process. IF that is true in your case, and it contradicts my own experiences of performance and reputable published metrics, then it must be down to something else."

Alas, I am not the only developer who has come across this issue. One developer I know works in the ol industry and they have loads of C++ applications which won't even load into the development IDE.

I am fortunate as my project does load into the IDE and thugh I can edit it in VS6 I have to compile it on an XP machine because the compiler dies on Windows 7.

Oh, of course, it works fine on smaller projects but get something meaty in there and it just borks.

Now, I didn't mention anything about frame rates so the gamer argument is not relevent. As it happens I play some game on my W7 machine and it's fine. In fact, that is where the emphasis seems to be for most of the Windows machines these days.

I did say something about hammering out tens of thousand of SQL statements in a run. One doesn't get many games where this is a requirement and if it is then it's perhaps a game that I don't wish to play.

So I can only assume that you twisted my argument by replacing SQL bashing with gaming tramerates and, anyway, isn't that mostly down to the graphics card and not so much the operating system?

My set-up? Right out of the box. Though I do tweak both operating systems for speed but even if I don't do so it makes no difference. So, back to you; when has the last time you have compiled a C++ project with dozens of thousands of line of code in VS6 under W7/8?

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BongoJoe
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Re: What's to look forward to?

Stupid statement. How can people prefer the poor-security, slower and less manageable XP to modern 7/8?

I have a number of machiens here in my home office. Some run XP and some run Windows 7.

I do my nightly database runs for my business on the XP machines as these involve lots of tens of thousands of SQL statements each day and even on ancient equipment the code runs faster on the XP machines than they do on the new faster machines running Windows 7. By about a factor of five or six.

I can set off my run at about 6pm on the XP machines and then by about nine or ten in the evening the XP machines are finished with the run. By breakfast the Win7 machines are still chewing it over. That is, if they haven't died due to their somewhat strange implmenentation of ADO (no, I am not rewring tens of thousands of line of code to match this week's version of the Microsoft Database of the Week).

Furthermore, starting up the XP machines takes no longer than the W7 machines. And didn't I read somewhere that that shutdown/startup on Windows 8 was nothing more than a clever hibernation rather than a boot from the metal?

Windows XP may have its flaws but when you compare it to Windows 7 speed is certainly not one of them. I made the mistake of 'upgrading' to Windows 7 because Adobe Lightroom wouldn't work on XP any more and that was one application which I needed the update for.

As for Office? Well, one can't beat the flexiblity of the old menu system. If one doesn't want certain things on the menu then a few lines of VBA will sort that out. Want other things in? Again,. a few lines of code would sort that. Office 2013 may be better and cleaner if and only if you wish to share Microsoft's idea of cleaner.

And speaking as a developer who sometimes maintains some of the many billions lines of VS6 code that's out there; I can tell you that Windows 7 and Visual Studio 6 are a match made in hell and for any decent sized project won't even load, let along compile, under Windows 7.

Faster? No chance. Better? Not if one is developing or, worse, if one has many thousand files in a folder that's pointed to by a library pointer such as 'My Music'. More secure? not sure about that; they have to get past my firewall,my scripts, my add-ons and the third party software. Since I don't go to dodgy pr0n or download sites I can't tell the difference.

One of my clients is moving to w7 on all of their machines. I would love to see how they get on with their required 3rd Party Active-X plug ins for IE6.

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Lords try shoehorning law against REVENGE SMUT into justice bill

BongoJoe
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Re: Read the article

If it's not acually a crime it's actually a breach of copyright and could a hefty claim be made through the civil courts?

If I made a such a picture of myself (don't worry, you're safe!) and then sent it to you then under copyright law the picture belongs to you but I still own the copyright and, thus, it can't be published without my consent.

So, don't jail 'em shove them through the Civil Courts because the victim will perhaps be needing the cash when they've lost their jobs, current partners or whatever.

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Catch cack-handed baggage handlers in the act with Ericsson's SPY SUITCASE

BongoJoe
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Agreed. And they still want you put guitars in the hold.

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Google Glass faces UK cinema ban: Heaven forbid someone films you crying in a rom-com

BongoJoe
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Re: film theft

Why not?

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BongoJoe
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Devil

Just a thought

I admit not seeing one of these items at all and even less likely to see one in a cinema (ours is going to be turned into a carpet warehouse or something) there is one question that I have.

If someone is using one; is there any light spilling over that others can see? For example, will the light from the tiny projector be visible to anyone else or there is an LED lit?

If so, I would imagine that this would be adequate grounds for refusing them.

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Microsoft's Online Exchange fixed after going titsup for NINE HOURS

BongoJoe
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You missed out the vital word 'solution'.

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Code Spaces goes titsup FOREVER after attacker NUKES its Amazon-hosted data

BongoJoe
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"In summary, most of our data, backups, machine configurations and offsite backups were either partially or completely deleted."

Surely off site backups should be off line and stored somewhere very, very secure. Or am I doing things needlessly the old-fashioned way?

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Adobe all smiles as beret bods spaff cash on non-cloud Creative Suite

BongoJoe
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Re: Rather than paying adobe in perpetuity

I have Lightroom and for those very few occasions when I need something extra there's Elements.

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Internet of Things fridges? Pfft. So how does my milk carton know when it's empty?

BongoJoe
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Not everything that is finished with gets tossed into the bin. Fruit and veg, for example, ends up in the compost. The bacon gets eaten entirely, as does the beef.

Plus I may lob things into the bin that I don't buy such as makerel and other fish. And, besides, how I am going to expect to have a bar code on a scrumped brown trout or pheasant?

A lot of people who don't live in cling film wrapped land tend to buy, or obtain, their food in less packaging then their town dwelling equivilents.

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BongoJoe
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Re: The Answer Is Under Our Noses

Give me a proper greengrocer and a nine fingered butcher any day.

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'Hashtag' added to the OED – but # isn't a hash, pound, nor number sign

BongoJoe
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At last. Perhaps now people will beleive me when I call it the 'octothorpe'.

I also call the plus sign the 'quadrothorpe' and the miinus sign the 'bithorpe'. I don't know if they are legit terms but it helps to annoy the wife.

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The cute things they say

BongoJoe
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Re: Cute people work for tech support too

Field Engineers.

I was one once because my boss decided that he didn't like me and so whilst I worked for him I'd never write a line of code again and instead I was made a Field Engineer. And one day in the 80s I was dispatched to the far side of the country to get up an running a new digital telephone exchange that would be plumbed in and waiting for me.

To do that I'd need a computer. And since my boss was more important than me he had the laptop so that he do all important management things and I, the one who needed something light, was given a wooden crate containing an IBM PC-XT (yes it was that old).

I took the train across country taking this crate with me and got a taxi to take me to a spot on a dual carriagway where the exchange was. We finally got the crate into the back of the taxi after much struggling and I was dropped off in the lay-by next to where the exchange lay.

This was before the days of mobile phones and besides being a Field Engineer for bloody Alcatel meant that I wouldn't have merited one because I was too low in the food chain and, like laptops, they were for the gorrmless suits.

So I got a card from the taxi and told him that I would call him from the exchange when I was done because, after all, exchanges have telephones, right?

I dragged the crate off the main road and up the muddy bank next to the exchange and left it behind some bushes. I walked over the the exchange door, opened it, looked inside and it was bright, very bright.

The reason why it was bright was that there was no roof. In fact there was nothing but a concrete floor with no exchange racks and just a massive loom of wires coming out of the ground.

I looked around and thought to myself "How the hell do I get out of this one?"

I think the PC is still there many decades after I left that company.

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BongoJoe
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Re: favourite keyboard

Have you ever installed one of those keyboards with no lettering on?

Great fun.

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BongoJoe
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Re: Dilbert

Well I was in in a client's IT department one day when a head of management burst in.

"I can't get on the internet", was the cry

"Oh, they're backing it up" says I.

And off senior manegment went happy with the answer, however the Head of IT, the only know who understood what I said, held me with a steely glare and said "Never, ever do that again"

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Come off it, Moon, Earth. We KNOW you're 60 million years OLDER than we thought

BongoJoe
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Re: @ Lars

give us your definition of a good form of child abuse.

Sending the child to bagpipe lessons?

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BongoJoe
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Re: "Blind, drunken Gods, swaying to the sound of mad piping...."

I had an image just then of a goggle-eyed flautist standing on one leg singing "Aqualung".

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BongoJoe
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Headmaster

I thought that, by definion, there would be only one Creationist.

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Soccer Football in SPAAACE! ISS 'naut nails zero-G bicycle kick

BongoJoe
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Headmaster

Re: regulation pitch sized?

...and can't be square.

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Google's driverless car: It'll just block our roads. It's the WORST

BongoJoe
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Re: Stuff it can't hope to deal with

If isPerfectlyGoodCycleLaneAvailable (NOT_USED) then

PassWithinMinimumClearanceDistance

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BongoJoe
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Re: Stuff it can't hope to deal with

In a country lane, just wide enough for an ambulance I once had to drive up the bank and into the hedge as there were care behind me and an emergency coming the other way. Took me about half an hour to get off the bank and the paint marks from the ambulance never came off the side of the car.

Thankfully it was an old Lada so the car withstood the impromptu off roading. The toy tin cars behind needed thirs party assistance to get out.

That was the only time I was thankful that I drove a Lada. And, of course, when there was a spate of car thefts in the area and mine was still untouched, unlocked with the keys in the ignition.

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BongoJoe
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Re: FUD

and with these cars we can enjoy them!

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BongoJoe
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How will it pay the toll over the Severn Bridge?

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For your next privacy panic, look no further than vending machines

BongoJoe
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Re: They're already out there

I don't think that I would want my picture on Facebook with the caption of "Extra Fruity and Ribbed"

I would have a hell of a job explaining that to the wife.

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