* Posts by Ian 14

16 posts • joined 18 Jun 2010

LG: You can stop hiding from your scary SPY TELLY quite soon now

Ian 14

Voted with feet

My previous two LCD purchases were LG products. Yesterday I needed a new monitor. In the wake of this scandal, and LG's f**k y*u attitude to customers who approached them I decided to vote with my feet. A few days ago I'd have been looking at a shiny new LG logo under this very screen I'm typing on, instead it says HP. LG, if you're listening, your bad behaviour isn't just immoral, it also affects your bottom line and doubtless ultimately your stock price.

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US spy drone hijacked with GPS spoof hack, report says

Ian 14
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A touch of irrational bias perhaps?

Erm, have you ever read the Christian Science Monitor? Or are you just knee-jerk condemning something because its name associates it with a religion you aren't part of? Would you condemn it quite so quickly if it was called the "Sikh Times" or the "Jewish Chronicle"?

Well I, not a Christian Scientist I might add, have read it. Many, many newspapers could learn a thing or two about quality, accurate balanced reporting from the CSM. It's certainly better than most British daily papers. The CSM has a good track record of breaking news that doesn't come out in the main-stream media.

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Ian 14

@@That cannot work...

> "GPS signals are weaker than the background noise" if you use small portable antennae.

No, they are weaker than background noise, period. Typical ground signal from a GPS satellite is around -140 dBm; even the very best RF amplifier designs generate more noise than this within themselves. Only the magic of processing gain in a spread spectrum (DSSS) signal allows you to haul this signal up out of the noise.

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Ian 14
Holmes

Probably disinformation

Exactly, it should be impossible to spoof the military GPS signal.

I have a suspicion that this report originated as US disinformation. There has possibly been a monumental cock-up with the security of the drone's command and control channel - it has already been reported that these drones transmit unencrypted video. Such a FUBAR would be very, very embarrassing to the Americans who are just as sensitive to losing face as a Chinese emperor was.

You could even make an argument that the US Military (who were fuming that Bill Clinton ordered GPS selective availability to be permanently turned off) would like an excuse to argue for the return of selective availability to the civilian GPS signal. Hell, they might even stage-manage it all, deliberately losing a drone that in fact had non-standard internals as a disinformation campaign in its own right.

Some of the above might sound paranoid but when you're dealing with an outfit that would break arms embargoes (to Iran no less) to raise funds to fund terrorists (the Contras) that Congress had forbidden them to fund, help them to smuggle illegal drugs to raise funds, and generally break domestic and international law whenever it suits them it pays to be a bit paranoid. Remember, these are the people who brought you Fidel Castro's exploding cigar and many other incredible tales.

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Red Cross: 600m videogamers may be war criminals

Ian 14
Black Helicopters

... someone might spot the real correlation.

Given that's a chart of violent crime in the US ... I wonder how well the drop correlates to the movement of US troops out of the US to overseas?

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Google location tracking can invade privacy, hackers say

Ian 14

It is probably illegal in the UK

Under UK law it's illegal to intercept radio communications not intended for you. Making use of information intercepted (e.g. recording it in a database that others have access to) was always treated as an aggravating offence.

To quote from ofcom's site:

There are two offences under law:

Under Section 5(1)(b) of the WT Act 1949 it is an offence if a person "otherwise than under the authority of a designated person,

either:

(i) uses any wireless telegraphy apparatus with intent to obtain information as to the contents, sender or addressee of any message whether sent by means of wireless telegraphy or not, of which neither the person using the apparatus nor a person on whose behalf he is acting is an intended recipient;

This means that it is illegal to listen to anything other than general reception transmissions unless you are either a licensed user of the frequencies in question or have been specifically authorised to do so by a designated person. A designated person means:

the Secretary of State;

the Commissioners of Customs and Excise; or

any other person designated for the purpose by regulations made by the Secretary of State.

or:

(ii) except in the course of legal proceedings or for the purpose of any report thereof, discloses any information as to the contents, sender or addressee of any such message, being information which would not have come to his knowledge but for the use of wireless telegraphy apparatus by him or by another person."

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Ian 14
Alert

Yes, it is in some cases.

"it's not straightforward to learn the MAC address of a remote device"

It is if the device is running IPv6, The way most people use IPv6 the MAC address of the device is encoded in the bottom 64 bits of the IP address.

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South West Trains puts squeeze on commuters

Ian 14
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No, average people can't fit.

"'normal' size people certainly can fit in"

No they can't. Your idea of 'normal' is way off mark.

From standard anthropometric data:

Shoulder breadth (bideltoid)

Maximum horizontal breadth across the shoulders, measured to the protrusions of the deltoid muscles.

British Males, Aged19-65 years, without clothing. Add 10 mm for indoor clothing, 40mm for heavy outdoor clothing.

5%ile 420mm

50%ile 465mm

95%ile 510mm

Standard deviation 28 mm

So with southwest trains 430mm seats 10.6% of british adult males will fit, as long as they are naked. If they have the temerity to insist on wearing normal indoor clothing only 5.5% will fit.

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Library e-books to become too tatty to lend

Ian 14
FAIL

Hardly surprising...

Hardly surprising that this mean, penny pinching move comes from HarperCollins, given that it's one of the organs of Satan on earth, being owned by News Corporation.

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What's in your datacentre?

Ian 14

@Tony S

Indeed, I had already thought of the "Ladybird book" comparison myself before I read your post.

As a long time user of Data Centres I can say it omits 4 things that are at the top of my list in selecting the same (in no particular order):

1. Availability of power

2. Continuity of power.

3. Security

4. Access to carriers (i.e. Fibre providers, telcos, etc.)

In defense of the author, I've known him for over 20 years and this is very sub-par for him. I can only assume it was written hurriedly the morning after an evening press event held by one of the the PR companies know to be more liberal with the bottle, or after an evening out with Steve Shipside - a event we used to describe as being "Shipwrecked".

There was once an afternoon where Manek and Steve came back to the office very late from a lunch with...

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George Nazi assumes Alcatel 'senior execution role'

Ian 14

Not many Adolfs or Hitlers now

In 1890, a year after Hitler's birth, Adolf was the 13th most popular boy's name for births in that year. It then declines gradually in popularity until 1932 when it comes in at 70th, and then it suddenly climbs to around 35-40th and stays that way until 1940 where there is a peak at 30th. Its popularity then plummets in 1940 hitting 100th in 1942 and 150th by 1949 from which it has not recovered since.

I've met a couple of people who have either changed their family name from "Hitler" or whose forebears changed it post WWII. Hitler was, and is, an uncommon name in Germany but was common in the part of Austria that Adolf Hitler came from.

I have quite a lot of respect for people who have awkward surnames and stick to them. I met a Fred Death once, and it was definitely and defiantly pronounced, with a Yorkshire accent, as Death; NOT De'Arth or any of the common variations. I also have a friend who cheerfully goes by the surname Corpse - it suits her actually, she's got a nice body.

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Privacy watchdog needs someone to explain technology

Ian 14
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Cheap advice?

They admit to not being sufficiently knowledgeable about the technology and need to hire some help - that's good. They expect to get it for less than £40k a year - that's laughable. I know the pool of people they ought to be recruiting from - hell, I can list half a dozen excellent candidates immediately - and none of them are even going to bother reading beyond the the second line of the job ad that says "£35,816 - £39,137".

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Oz school in homosexual kookaburra rumpus

Ian 14

Taken backwards?

"... and that's really putting us backwards."

Oh you wish that you were so lucky. I wouldn't take you backwards if you...

I'll just get my coat.

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Brazilian banker's crypto baffles FBI

Ian 14

Re: Just wondering...

"I've noticed that nobody yet has taken a negative stance towards the (allegedly) criminal banker who has (allegedly) stolen money from us (as stealing money from companies inevitably results in ordinary people losing out)."

Possibly it's because people feel that allowing a minority of criminals to escape is an acceptable price for preventing state intrusion into the lives of the majority. It's similar to accepting that some criminals will go free if we have the presumption of innocence but fewer innocent people will be wrongfully convicted.

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BT boss brands Britain illiterate

Ian 14
FAIL

Weak thinking

It's a shame that Sir Mike has the gall to criticise other's

intellectual performance when his own critical thinking

is so poor.

He rails against educational standards, based on apprenticeship applications and then says:

"The politicians have a huge amount to answer for over the past 50 to 60 years.”

But surely the apprenticeship applicants will all be under 20 years old so where do the other 30 to 40 years come from?

He goes on to say:

"If you look at Scotland, it has the highest graduation rate [in the UK], but lower productivity than northeast England."

Which suggests that he's ignorant of the complete lack of correlation between where people are born, where they go to university and where they eventually end up working.

Although I like my employees to have good English skills, if given a choice between good English and good critical thinking I'd choose the latter any day.

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HP and Yahoo! team up to print ads in your home

Ian 14
FAIL

But inkjet ink is a bit pricier than printer's ink.

"Do you think that when you buy a newspaper or magazine you're not paying for ink?"

Printer's process inks cost about $50 per kilo, inkjet ink costs about $3000 a litre. Coverage levels are comparable in the 150-180 m2 per litre region. So inkjet ink costs some 60 times more than the ink on the magazine you buy on the newsstand.

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