* Posts by pip25

118 posts • joined 17 Jun 2010

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Google vows: Earth will VANISH in 2015

pip25
Thumb Down

Rather evil, if you ask me

Phase out an API but offer no replacement whatsoever. It's not one of the more obscure Google APIs either. This does not make one especially confident that using Google's online services in company or personal projects is a safe option in the long run.

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Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode

pip25
Unhappy

Re: Erm non story

It has been confirmed that the game servers handle all financial transactions - meaning every time you buy or sell something, it will need to connect to the server. That's light years away from "occasionally", in fact, that's pretty much an "always online" game. It also means that when the servers go offline, the game dies too. :/

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Windows 10's 'built-in keylogger'? Ha ha, says Microsoft – no, it just monitors your typing

pip25

Re: Microsoft simply cannot afford this to happen

Please imagine this on a smaller scale for a moment: you give out a pre-release version of an accounting software you wrote for a client to get some test data in more real-life scenarios. On the next meeting you casually mention to them that their login problems are probably related to the fact that they tend to press TAB too many times and thus jump over the "Login" button to the "Cancel" button. "How do you know that?" they ask. "Well, this test version logs all key presses," you reply, "We mentioned it in the release notes, too. You know, in section 53."

Will your client appreciate your (totally valid and useful) testing feature? Illogical or not, most won't. It goes over a certain line. If you want real-life test data, then you are expecting your users to do the same things with your software that they do in production environments, at least to an extent. That does not mesh well with key loggers of any kind, because at the very least it creeps people out. And that's not good for the image of your company or your software, as simple as that.

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pip25
FAIL

Microsoft simply cannot afford this to happen

It doesn't really matter if it's in the EULA or if the supposed keylogger collects everything or just bits of information; this is not the way you get people excited about your new operating system version. It's a PR disaster. The reputation of the company and the Windows brand itself (both which wasn't very stellar to begin with) took such a hit in the last few years that this really is the last thing they should be doing.

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Patch Bash NOW: 'Shellshock' bug blasts OS X, Linux systems wide open

pip25
Facepalm

Wanted to see if my router is affected

Only to find out that it has a hardwired debug shell URL with a hardwired username/password. With root privileges. Well, at least it apparently does use busybox instead of bash... *facepalm*

5
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4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch

pip25
Meh

I can feel the difference...

...in my wallet. And for now I think I'll stick with the reassuring experience of having significantly more money in it instead of "feeling" something coming from a TV screen which I only seldom use to begin with.

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No more turning over a USB thing, then turning it over again to plug it in: Reversible socket ready for lift off

pip25
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I don't need another damn connector type

USB connectors already come in so many shapes and sizes, why the heck do we need yet another variant? Type A plugs will still remain the default especially on desktops, if for no other reason then because of compatibility. I don't even really see the ones who can make big money out of this (the converter manufacturers, maybe?), so I simply cannot fathom why this idiotic move was necessary.

5
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Microsoft throws old versions of Internet Explorer under the bus

pip25
Meh

I cannot upgrade

IE10 requires a "platform update" (KB2670838) to be installed on Windows 7 that completely breaks Aero on my desktop, so I'm stuck with IE9. Well, at least I don't use it much...

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Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY

pip25
Meh

I'm a web developer

And I'd prefer if they fixed some bugs instead. I'm at the end of a project right now, and do you know which browser I had the most problems with during development? No, not IE... Firefox! (I guess IE's issues are quite well known already and most frameworks take them into account.) Firefox keeps crashing like there's no tomorrow, has some absurd kind of memory leak which makes large images impossible to load after some time, and so on and so forth... I use Firefox as my default browser and I knew it had problems, but this experience was really disheartening. :(

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Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS

pip25
Unhappy

Re: Sometimes, nobody inside cares what *you* think

I feel this is a more general issue and seems to be part of a trend I noticed with projects which are supposedly open to contributions.

These projects have several types of users in terms of the available time they commit to it, but inevitably, there will be at least a few "fanatics" who do not mind the project taking up a huge amount of their time, quickly become leaders and organizers, and are responsible for much of the project's momentum.

Unfortunately, it seems like they are also the very same people who will be responsible for the project's eventual downfall. Why? Simply because, after all the time and work they've put into it, they now feel that the project (or at least a good chunk of it) belongs to them. This is in fact a completely understandable emotion given the circumstances, but also very destructive, since instead of trying to inspect a proposal based on its own merits, they will became increasingly prone to dismissing something which doesn't harmonize with their current "vision" of the project out of hand. This not only discourages other, less "fanatic" contributors, but can also lead to the degradation of the project's overall quality, since, let's face it, even these very smart and talented people can be wrong, but with their status and mindset they can become largely immune to critique.

I've seen this attitude in so many places that it's kind of scary. Firefox and Chrome are an example, but then there's the whole recent Gnome debacle, too. And it's not just about software projects: I feel Wikipedia suffers from the very same problem, with its editors becoming increasingly elitist and seeing new people as more of a hindrance than an asset. Heck, I'm an admin of a smaller wiki too and I've seen the very same effect on myself.

Without wanting to sound overly dramatic, unless we find some kind of solution to this problem, this can eventually have a devastating effect on the open-source community as a whole. :(

8
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Russians turn Raspberry Pi into fully-fledged autopilot

pip25
Thumb Up

@James 47

The restrictions only seem to apply to GPS units coming from the US. The project is Russian, and they're using units made by the Swiss company "U-blox", so I don't think this is going to be an issue.

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TrueCrypt considered HARMFUL – downloads, website meddled to warn: 'It's not secure'

pip25
Facepalm

This is ridiculous

TrueCrypt had a quite functional, if not very eye-catching website, which has been replaced by a primitive HTML page that you can throw together in two minutes. The source code for "7.2" is peppered with inane "INSECURE_APP" messages. The binary was signed with a different key. Can anyone seriously believe that this is the work of the original developers?

Whatever the motivation, this looks like a rather obvious security breach regarding the project's SourceForge account. No more and no less.

(I mean... switch to Bitlocker? That's not even a good troll.)

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Google clamps down on rogue Chrome plugins and extensions

pip25
Thumb Down

I guess Chrome got popular enough

Time for Google to start (ab)using its market share. I don't usually have Google-phobia but this move reminds me too much of what Microsoft used to do with IE.

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EBay, you keep using the word 'SECURITY'. I do not think it means what you think it means

pip25
Flame

I'm beyond fed up with this

A major site hack or vulnerability or whatever comes out every other week, prompting me to change my password(s). The new one(s) should (once again) be unique to the site, not tied to any personal data, etc., etc...

Go to hell. Seriously, just go to hell; I'm not a goddamn hash table that can store an infinite number of passwords for an infinite number of sites and change any or all of them at a moment's notice. My memory is rather limited in this aspect.

Use a password manager, you say? I access these sites from a variety of devices and don't want my passwords to be present (encrypted or not) on all of them. Instead, I use SuperGenPass, but since that uses my master password and the site name to generate the actual pass, I can't change the site password without changing my master password, and thus we're back to square one.

I'm just so sick and tired of the whole thing by now, goddammit...

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How the W3C met its Waterloo at the Do Not Track vote showdown

pip25

Re: Just a little point.

Unfortunately many people fail to see a very simple point: ad networks will never support any kind of agreement that prevents them from tracking/exploiting/monetizing the majority of the Internet users, at least unless state legislations (those of the US and the EU in particular) force them to do otherwise, and that's unlikely to happen in the near future. Thus, DNT being "on" by default in any major browser doomed the standard immediately.

It's always been about the inexperienced, the uninformed or the plain ignorant. Why do you think, when submitting a registration to a forum or site, the checkbox that allows people to spam you with their useless newsletter is always, ALWAYS checked by default? Most people currently either don't know or don't care about tracking, and this is the major reason why you even have the possibility to opt-out from services such as Google Now at all.

We are allowed to make a choice because most users do not bother. No, that's not a good thing at all, but a lot more fundamental change would be needed in the financial model of Internet companies today to allow things to be done differently. A simple request header will not do much.

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Do Not Track W3C murder plot fails by handful of votes

pip25
Unhappy

DNT is already dead, sadly

Since IE has it on by default, no ad provider can or will take it seriously. Well done Microsoft, something tells me this was your intention from the start. :(

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Mozilla CTO blasts WC3 plans to bless anti-piracy DRM tech in HTML5

pip25
WTF?

DRM plugins?

What happened to the brave new plugin-less HTML5 world? Does this mean that Apple and Microsoft will do a 180 degrees turn on their current mobile/TIFKAM browser policies? And let's not get started on the potential problems caused by the numerous platforms one can use to access web content today... Will DRM plugins be ported to all platforms? Android? iOS? Linux...? I highly doubt it.

Either I'm fundamentally misunderstanding something here, or this DRM proposal goes against each and every trend on the web today, a fact that becomes even more baffling when one looks at the companies pushing for it.

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Microsoft relents: 'Go ahead, install Windows 8.1 on clean PCs'

pip25
FAIL

Insane

I simply cannot fathom why they enforce this ridiculous restriction. A full upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1 should be no more difficult than an upgrade from Window 7 to Windows 8. The system did not change all that much.

I guess I'll be able to get around it the same way I upgraded my XP machine to Win7 (by first upgrading to Vista as an intermediate step), but knowing this I'm even less eager to do so than before.

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Germany warns: You just CAN'T TRUST some Windows 8 PCs

pip25
FAIL

It gets even better:

Apparently, MS is forcing manufacturers to include TPM 2.0 into their products if they want to be "Windows 8.1 certified", starting from 2015. Good luck finding a new PC without a working TPM afterwards.

I usually regard myself as a conservative IT guy who still likes doing most things on a good old PC, but if this really is the future of X86/X64, I will seriously consider switching to some different architecture when my current machine breaks down. Damn the inconveniences.

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Lenovo to ship all new PCs with Start Menu replacement

pip25
Facepalm

Pokki...? Seriously?

How about Start8? Stardock would jump at the opportunity and license it to Lenovo for a fraction of the cost. Or if you don't want to pay a penny, who not Classic Shell? Why does even a sensible move like this end up as just another piece of crapware to uninstall? Why, why, WHY?

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The man from Del Monte, he says... NO! .delmonte gTLD bid crushed, juiced

pip25
Unhappy

Is this still going on?

I thought/hoped they might have finally given up on the whole gTLD thing after one blunder too many...

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Barbie paints Red Planet pink with NASA-approved Mars Explorer doll

pip25
Joke

Such old-fashioned thinking

No gloves? That's what force fields are for, my good friend. You have to think big! Mars Explorer Barbie will be for women's spacewear what Minority Report was for user interaction! We are given a glimpse to a most glorious future! (And that future is pink!)

How sad it is to see El Reg stuck behind the times to such an extent.

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Microsoft video preview shows Windows 8.1 tablet UI options

pip25
Thumb Up

Desktop wallpaper on Start Screen ->

50% less jarring transition back and forth. Who would have thought? </sarcasm>

It still feels like something of a second desktop, but it's a definite if small improvement. Maybe for Windows 8.321 they will actually be able to integrate the two together, which will probably the time when I will consider upgrading.

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More than half of Windows 8 users just treat it like Windows 7

pip25
Alert

Abysmal

I figured Metro wasn't doing very well, but these figures are still no less than shocking. If this isn't a proper wake-up call for Microsoft, then nothing is.

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Microsoft: YES! You can have your desktop back again for FREE!

pip25
Thumb Up

Re: Windows 8.1

More like "Windows for Work"

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Java open-source frameworks 'pose risk' to biz - report

pip25
Meh

Re: Frameworks make life more complicated without any real advantage - IMHO

Sorry, but I believe it's you.

Spring (and Hibernate) is not "reinventing the wheel", in most cases it's perfectly capable of using whatever previous invention you feel comfortable with. You don't like annotations? Use XML configuration instead. Or create a simple POJO that sets up your beans with plain Java code. You hate HQL? Most queries can be nicely done with the Criteria API as well, and there's no shame in using JdbcTemplate if everything else fails. (For some tasks, such as mass inserts, using Hibernate itself may be unnecessary.) You hate Hibernate altogether? Spring works with all major ORM frameworks.

Some training can help, yes. Although I have to say, there were only a handful of cases when I couldn't find an answer to my question with a couple of Google searches, so even those (insanely expensive) Spring courses aren't 100% necessary to properly work with the framework.

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Microsoft licence cops kick in TWICE as many customers' doors as rivals

pip25
Unhappy

How does this "audit" even work...?

The Microsoft guys kick down your door and demand your licenses, or else? (Obviously not, but I also can't imagine the companies inviting them willingly.) How is that legally possible? Isn't anyone else unnerved that such a thing even exists...?

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Google enables private Play stores

pip25
Thumb Up

I see potential in something like this

There exist sites today like CNET which have their own collection of desktop software downloads from various developers, reviewed by the owners of the site. If you get your stuff from there, you can also be (somewhat) sure that you're not installing some malware-ridden mess.

The same thing could be done to "private Play stores": in return for some ad revenue, CNET could publish its own collection of Android apps, all taken from the main store with the developers' consent of course, and if people are looking for safe, quality programs, they could look there instead of the more "lawless" main Play store. This way, people can have their strict "curated app store" if they really want, but it's forced upon anyone, and most importantly for Google, they don't have to do any of the work.

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Japanese firm offers 4-tonne GIANT MECHs for just $1.3m

pip25
Meh

Meh

It doesn't even walk, it rolls. Call me back when they have actual legs, and then I may be tempted.

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Mozilla's Social add-on MERGES Facebook with Firefox

pip25
Meh

Re: Why isn't this an add-on??

It's called "Expire history by days", and it does just that. Way back in the Stone Age, err I mean Firefox 2 or maybe 3, this was actually part of the core functionality. Then they got a "better" idea.... *sigh*

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pip25
Facepalm

Why isn't this an add-on??

I still have to install a separate add-on to make Firefox's history handling at least moderately sane. They can't add a few more options to Firefox regarding that, but Facebook Messenger is a must have? Are they completely off their meds now?

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Windows boss Steve Sinofsky exits Microsoft

pip25
Unhappy

Re: Seems pretty straightforward to me....

As sad as the fact is, I have to agree.

It's easy to blame Sinofsky for TIFKAM, but if anyone read that leaked Powerpoint presentation around half a year ago about the Microsoft products of the immediate future, from that it's glaringly obvious how TIFKAM was promoted to be part of the global company strategy of unified interfaces (and Ballmer is to blame for that, if I had to guess). TIFKAM in Windows 8, at least in the form that it was ultimately included, was a decision Sinofsky likely had little influence in.

Thus, with his departure, I'm afraid things will only get worse at Microsoft.

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Bradley Manning submits partially-guilty plea in WikiLeaks case

pip25
Facepalm

Too bad ACs can't pick their icon...

You could then choose "troll" and preserve my faith in humanity.

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Nokia Lumia 920 Windows Phone 8 handset review

pip25
Thumb Up

This is what a review should look like

As much as I don't see eye to eye with Mr. Orlowski on copyright-related matters, I find myself wishing he'd review the fruity firm's newest offering as well next time.

(Disclaimer: I don't own, nor do I intend to own a WP8 device.)

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Motorola outs Razr phone with Intel Inside

pip25
Go

Re: No microSD-card slot?

Engadget seems to claim it does have a microSD card slot inside.

1
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GNOME hacker: Culture isn't holding desktop Linux back

pip25
WTF?

Agreed, but...

" Instead, they should work to build systems that are secure, easy to manage, integrate well with existing network services, upgrade smoothly, and require little retraining(...)"

What on earth happened to requiring little retraining in Gnome 3 then?

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There is life after the death of Microsoft’s Windows 8 Start button

pip25

Re: Not this "pin everything to the taskbar" argument again

I am using an ordinary laptop with full HD resolution. At this pixel size, using the "small icons" option makes the icons too tiny to be useful for me.

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pip25
Thumb Down

Not this "pin everything to the taskbar" argument again

I have no more than one or two applications pinned on my 16:9 monitor, because I need the rest of the taskbar to, you know, display my running tasks. I have 13 such windows active right now and would avoid grouping them if possible.

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Office 2013 to eat own file-format dog food

pip25
Devil

Actual features I care about in a new Office version?

With PDF editing even? Color me shocked.

Although, my cynical side can already see those small deviations Office 2013 will make when reading or writing the open format... "by mistake", of course, what else.

2
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Oracle scales back plans for Java 8

pip25
FAIL

Waiting for the next announcement...

...where they will regret to inform us that Project Lambda did not make it either. Maybe for Java 123.

But do not fear, Java 8 will still bring new revolutionary changes to the table, such as... err... a new Date/Time API! Yay!

When almost all important features were dropped from Java 7, I considered it to be sad news. This, however, is now bordering on ridiculous.

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PayPal is bleeding market share and it's all eBay's fault

pip25
Thumb Down

Paypal is pretty much a monopoly internationally

And that needs to stop.

It has come to the point that Paypal can effectively put people out of business by freezing their accounts and refusing further transactions for whatever reason. Some competition is desperately needed here.

0
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Euro Parliament kills ACTA treaty before court can look at it

pip25
Happy

I'm glad ACTA is dead

While it's possible that some of its parts might have been beneficial, the way the trade agreement was negotiated is simply not something that can be allowed to become the norm. Hopefully this will send a message.

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Resistive Ram cache to make Flash fly, say boffins

pip25
Happy

How about...

...a traditional HDD with RRAM cache? Sure, it'll have greater power consumption, but it could still benefit from the speed increase, not to mention it's way cheaper and bigger than Flash, which can offset the cost of RRAM.

0
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Microsoft takes on tablets with keyboard-equipped Surface

pip25
Trollface

The ARM version looks nice

Hopefully someone will port Android to it.

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Mozilla plans multi-engine search results, native iOS browser

pip25
Meh

“What is the reason you would pick Firefox over Chrome?”

I don't need much, aside of Firefox not freezing for several seconds after startup. (Not to mention the other freezes that occur occasionally.) A startup time after OS boot that is less than the current ~12 seconds on my i7 CPU would be nice too.

I'm still using Firefox as my main browser, but if I quickly need to check something, I sadly turn to Chrome now. Chrome has its flaws, but it's fast and responsive, at least.

0
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Scots council: 9-yr-old lunch blogger was causing 'distress and harm'

pip25
FAIL

Oh wow

I was prepared for a statement way up on the idiocy scale, but the council still managed to impress me.

5
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ICANN eggfaced after publishing dot-word biz overlords' personal info

pip25
FAIL

They should really call off the whole thing

gTLDs were a bad idea to begin with, but ICANN's unnumbered embarrassments show that they're simply not capable of handling it. Better to stop now than to wait until this mess goes live and the REALLY bad issues crop up. (Because there's no doubt in my mind that they will.)

3
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NTT demos double-sided see-through smartphone

pip25
Thumb Up

Re: Just because they can

I don't agree. One of my main gripes with touchscreens is that my finger is obscuring the general area that I am trying to touch, and without any tacile feedback, the accuracy of my "clicks" decreases substantially. If I could see my own finger BEHIND the screen instead of in front of it, this would not be an issue. It's like one of those behind-the-screen trackpads, only more usable.

1
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Ten... Qwerty mobiles

pip25
Thumb Down

All disappointing

If the keyboard cannot be tucked away into/under the phone, that reduces the screen to a size that is unacceptable for me. Now if only Motorola Droid 4 would work on this side of the Atlantic...

0
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Microsoft to devs: Don't ruin Win 8 launch with crap code

pip25
FAIL

Meanwhile

Internet Explorer is likely calling the very same APIs that developers (including Mozilla) should not use. But IE is made by Microsoft, and they know what they're doing, right? Right...?

Talk about hypocrisy...

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