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* Posts by oldtaku

47 posts • joined 18 Aug 2011

Own a Cisco modem or wireless gateway? It might be owned by someone else, too

oldtaku
Unhappy

Thanks, NSA!

Of course they knew about this but said nothing so they could exploit it themselves.

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Google's NEST can't stand the heat, needs patch for use in kitchen

oldtaku
Unhappy

Re: WTF?

So they can track when you enter and leave rooms. More data to sell!

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Supposedly secure Dogecoin service Dogevault goes offline

oldtaku
Facepalm

Whyyyyyyy?

Why would you put your cryptocoin (of any sort) in a third party 'vault' when these things have big red 'hey come hack me for big loots!' flashing signs taped to their doors?

None of them are secure or even /can/ be secure with determined enough hackers.

And even if they're secure enough, eventually the admins succumb to temptation and you get 'hacked' by the people supposedly protecting your coin.

It's just a bad idea.

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Amazon is decompiling our apps in security gaffe hunt, says dev

oldtaku
Facepalm

So, totally incompetent dev is upset at Amazon for decompiling his app, which anyone can do, and discovering he just hardcoded critical security stuff as plaintext strings right in the app.

Oh yes, Amazon is clearly in the wrong here.

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Microsoft was 'willing' to buy WhatsApp says Bill Gates

oldtaku
Facepalm

Sure, and I'm certainly 'willing' to sleep with Alison Brie and Kerry Washington.

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Distro diaspora: Four flavours of Ubuntu unpacked

oldtaku
Meh

Probably better to just start with Debian or Mint these days (depending on whether you want server or out of box desktop) now that Ubuntu's gone off the rails so badly.

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NSA: It's TRUE, we grab 200 MILLION of your text messages A DAY globally

oldtaku
Unhappy

Sadly, is there anyone who is even remotely surprised by this? I just assumed this was already covered. Good to have it confirmed, of course.

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Target's database raided, 70 MILLION US shoppers at risk of ID theft

oldtaku
FAIL

Now over 110M

It's up to 110M now in less than 12 hours.

Just figure if you ever gave Target any of your personal info, or if they bought it from someone else for marketing purposes, it was stolen.

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If you're still waiting for Firefox on Windows 8, don't hold your breath

oldtaku
Alien

Re: What *other* apps are not available on Windows 8?

To be clear, anything (99.999%) that works under Windows 7 works fine under Windows 8 desktop, and Windows 8 is perfectly usable as a slightly upgraded Windows 7 by using Start8 or a similar app.

They're talking about a Metro ('scuse me, Modern UI) app here. You can see why that's not a high priority.

One more example of the incoherent clusterfrak that is Windows 8 positioning.

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RSA comes out swinging at claims it took NSA's $10m to backdoor crypto

oldtaku
Mushroom

You'll notice they don't deny taking the $10M.

Dual_EC_DRBG was known to be weak and slow and suspect even before it was adopted as a standard.

RSA made it the default in mid 2006 in spite of the known concerns.

By 2007, both Schneider, Microsoft, and others had shown it was fatally weak and flawed.

RSA kept using it as the default till late 2013.

They were either in the NSA's pocket or stunningly incompetent at security, which is supposedly the one thing in the world they were the best at.

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Relax, Obama! Former Microsoft exec tapped to save sick healthcare.gov

oldtaku
Trollface

'You know what this website really needs to fix it? A ribbon bar!'

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Revealed: How Microsoft DNS went titsup globally on Xbox One launch day

oldtaku
Facepalm

Looks like they got bit by their own byzantine circus of GPO settings which interact in (often) mysterious ways and make life hellish on the Windows servers.

I'm sure they even tested before pushing, but it only takes one obscure setting on the production servers, or something that only interacts with real requests coming from the real load balancers.

Now that's eating your own dogfood.

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Google 'fesses up: Yup, we're KILLING OFF IE9 support for Gmail, Apps

oldtaku
Meh

I don't blame 'em

With IE9's CSS weirdnesses it's still a pain in the ass to support (though nowhere near as bad as IE5/6). IE11 is much cleaner, so they should be able to scrap a crudload of IE9 specific hacks and clean up the creaking code.

You should still be able to use the pure HTML version on IE9 if you're desperate and can't upgrade to another browser because the IT guys are holding your puppy hostage.

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How to spot a coders comment

oldtaku

I quote like 'this' because Python lets me and I'm lazy.

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Post-PC world? POST-MAC WORLD more like

oldtaku
Windows

Anyone who knows enough to care about Windows 8.1 is not the sort of person who would be daunted at all by needing to upgrade to it. Hell, you might even be running RTM already.

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iOS 7 SPANKS Samsung's Android in user-experience rating

oldtaku
Pint

I'd certainly agree that Samsung's deprovements to stock Android probably take off about 10 points.

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BYOD for our staff? 'Career limiting' move, says Dell exec

oldtaku

Entrenched and defensive

Guess that's the sort of thing you have to do when you're a rapidly declining company in a rapidly declining market and none of your alternatives have gone well. Batten down the hatches! And buy our own stuff because someone needs to.

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'Wandering Dago' tuck truck ejected from NY race track

oldtaku

We've still got quite a strong Italian American lobby (National Italian American Foundation, for instance) who send vigorous letters of complaint to any media that suggests that there might ever have been a Mafia in Italy and that surely this is a scurrilous lie and the Teamsters and New Jersey waste management companies are completely legitimate businessmen.

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China: Online predator or hapless host?

oldtaku

China has amazing levels of Internet border control (thanks to Cisco).

If someone's inside the walls and hacking someone outside, it's because China wants them to.

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Research explodes myth that older programmers are obsolete

oldtaku
Go

Older devs at our company have no problem picking up new tech - there's no choice since we're not a government agency or big bloated corporation. Who knows what the next project will bring?

Our biggest advantage over the young guys - we've already made soooo many mistakes. And time estimation, triage, and other engineering skills seems to work across any tech.

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Samsung under fire over copy-paste bricking

oldtaku
FAIL

'Samsung’s TouchWiz code'

Well that would do it. One more excellent reason to root and clear that crap out. Of course I realize that most people won't or can't do that and it's ridiculous that they haven't fixed it yet for their tens of millions of existing devices. They've always been very bad about updates.

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Fujitsu reveals data transfer protocol 30 times faster than TCP

oldtaku
Facepalm

Good to know my physical links are now 2000% efficient

Wow! I just transfered a very large file at about 85 MByte/sec over GigE using TCP. You can imagine my elation to know that my Gigabit Ethernet NICs can now transfer 20 Gigabytes per second with only a protocol change.

So seriously, I imagine this is an alternate algorithm for lost packet retransmit over UDP with attempts to minimize TCP's backoff. There are dozens of schemes to do this with TCP already ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TCP_congestion_avoidance_algorithm ), but minus the hype codswallop anything new is interesting.

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Why did your outsourced IT fall over? Cos you weren't on Twitter

oldtaku
Thumb Down

Good lord, what a cesspit of buzzwordy twaddle. Your Indian outsourcers aren't going to get any more diligent or intelligent just because you follow them on twitter or friend them on teh faceboek. You're going to have to be on the phone screaming at them every day in order to get the basic services you're paying for, as per usual.

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McAfee ‘not a suspect’: CNN report

oldtaku
Trollface

Not sure how they do this in the UK, but in the US 'He is not a suspect, just a person of interest' means 'He is our primary suspect and we need him to turn himself in now so we can cuff him, taser him 20 times, and throw him in a cell under 24/7 watch (in that order) till his hearing, and we hope he is stupid or insane enough to believe that.'

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Dishonored game review

oldtaku
Happy

So good. Here's the best way to play (I think).

I love how open this game is, all the little stories you find off to the side, often not explained but obvious from the context. In addition to reading all the books, make sure you talk to everyone until they stop talking back, and use the heart on them till it repeats if you want the full story.

But here's what I suggest - play through once trying to sneak but just killing everyone when you mess up. Get the disappearing bodies skills and just blink, backstab, blink, or headshot with bolts. It'll go fairly fast, because if everyone's dead you can explore pretty quickly.

Now play again - kill nobody, don't get detected (ghosting). By this point your skills are good enough that you can slip through the levels with ease. You think killing every hostile on the level is badass? Having nobody even know you were there is so much more satisfying. And yes, they made it so you can play the entire game without killing anyone. The levels will take longer but you will feel so much more relaxed. You are now the ultimate Zen Assassin. Does a falling victim make a sound if it's not dead?

This game is the Thief 4 I've been waiting for.

P.S: I'm fairly sad that when they playtested the masquerade mission you mention none of the console players could figure it out without explicit directions on what to do, which is why the NPCs in that mission rub things in your face ('HEY MAYBE YOU SHOULD GO UPSTAIRS WINK WINK') even if you're a PC player. Oh well.

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Intel denies that its CEO thinks Windows 8 isn't ready

oldtaku
Megaphone

Though they don't deny that he said it.

Which it would be really easy to do, you know, if he hadn't actually said it.

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Apple urged to defy China's one child policy

oldtaku
FAIL

Yeah, that's what Apple really needs to focus on. Getting people to breed more. We just don't have enough people.

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Want a Windows 8 Start Button? Open source to the rescue!

oldtaku
Unhappy

Didn't MS say they were specifically going to rip out the bits of Win8 that let this work after it showed up for early builds?

And of course even if it still works, any time you try to run a 'optimized for Metro' app it'll still pop you into full screen. There's no escape.

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NASA picks the target for Curiosity's first road trip

oldtaku
Alien

At least name the poor thing.

I realize they don't want to name every single pebble they see, but perhaps they could make an exception for the first poor bugger they're going to blast with their nuclear powered lasers.

Instead of N165, perhaps... 'Julian Assange'.

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Kidney-for-iPad fanboi sues after illness strikes

oldtaku
Trollface

What Chinese person is worth £227,785 to China unless they're party apparatchik? More like £10.

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Study: Users prefer Google+ over Facebook

oldtaku
Pint

That's because there aren't nearly as many annoying prats on Google+ to poke you with self-absorbed updates.

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US county named 'area of outstanding natural stupidity'

oldtaku
Alert

Florida?

I assume the entire state of Florida is already in the 'area of outstanding natural stupidity' Hall of Fame.

Still the only state with its own Fark tag since the number of stupid and asinine news stories out of it rival all the other states combined.

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Apple's Retina Macs: A little too elite?

oldtaku
FAIL

Re: Suspicious, me?

It's not a big deal. I am not an iHater or an iLover. I own Apple products, I own MS products, I own Android products. I'm a whore.

Real Mac Users should be asking where the HELL the Mac Pro upgrade is, since the current upgrade is so goddamn pathetic that they didn't even bother mentioning it at WWDC.

Tim, when, pressed, said they would have 'something awesome' for Mac Pro users late next year. Which is a total copout, but as a laptop this thing is so far ahead of anyone else that it isn't even funny.

Please take this in context.

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oldtaku

Whoops - well, sorry for the typo, but the hardware on this is so FANTASTIC that I'm considering buying one just to run Windows 7 on. Apple is so far ahead of the hardware curve now that it's just sad to watch. Even though I have no desire to run OSX because I don't like fake leather or mullets.

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oldtaku
Trollface

Yeah, yeah, yeah, stick a USB3 or Thunderbold drive on it, you sniveling ponces.

What are you going to do, run Win7 or Ubuntu?

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China fingered as lappie disappears from Taiwanese boat

oldtaku

Steal ALL of them!

It's nice to have a goal, innit.

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'Europe two years late' to the US cloud party

oldtaku

Europe already opted out of competing on the Internet - it's too much work

Isn't that just the way it goes? At some point you reach a certain standard of living and say 'Yeah, that's it, this is fine, we're not going to kill ourselves any more,' and just coast.

In the US we don't have to pay overtime, don't give nearly as much vacation, and our privacy and consumer laws are written for the corporations, so we can run rings around Europe on something as fluid as this.

Of course, our companies look at places like India and China with envy and say to themselves 'Wow, we could literally work people to death and you'd have 20 more lined up to take the job before the body was even cold! How nice!'. They still lack talent - so as someone who works with Indian and Chinese coders, I have no fear at all for my job at the moment, since they're negative productivity. But at some point they'll get it together and then we'll languish in senescence too. I have no doubts about that. That's civilization for you!

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Chinese coders beat all-comers

oldtaku
Meh

It's a bit strange then that the number of crap Chinese coders I've had to work with vastly outnumbers (raw numbers or percentage-wise) any other nationality other than Indian. I've also worked with Russians, Ukranians, Poles, Ausies, Canadians, Brits, Irish, Scottish, German, French, Spanish, Yanks, even Mexicans.

But I'm willing to believe that if they're any good at all the Chinese govt immediately hires them to hack into NATO defense contractors and I never get to deal with them at all.

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AT&T plan: Let content providers pay your bandwidth bill

oldtaku
Thumb Down

It's a trap!

That was my first thought as well. Now they can charge both you /and/ the app provider for the bandwidth.

Because there is no way in heck that AT&T would be doing this as a service to the user.

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US Senator's Twitter account back after hack

oldtaku

It's a shame

That was the most coherent Grassley's twitter stream has ever been. Even by Rupert Murdoch's twitter standards he's like that mumbling guy on the subway.

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Google+ funny numbers mask falling growth

oldtaku
Thumb Down

I Fell

I bailed when they started the ridiculous Real Names Only thing.

I understand they've since eased off on it, but too late now. Too dickly too soon, Eric.

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AT&T poised to kick T-Mobile USA out of bed

oldtaku

Not giving up (though they might)

This looks more like divide and conquer. Instead of trying to fight the DoJ and FCC on two fronts, they're concentrating on the DoJ for now, so they can bring the full brunt of lobbying and bribes to bear on a single front.

Of course this is still a bad position, and they could at any time decide it's not worth the effort.

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Eclipse Xtends Java

oldtaku

Most of these features were left out on purpose

The main point of Java (outside of Android) is that you have a very picky, explicit, and yes, redundant language where everything is fully spelled out so you can let hordes of incompetent corporate coders work on a project without stepping on each others' toes too much.

Though I guess if you're used to Java and need to run on the JVM there's nothing wrong in moving Java back towards being fun to program with a preprocessor like this, since the enterprisey types can just ignore it. I can see where it'd make Android programming much less tedious.

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Win 8 haters are just scared of change, say MS bosses

oldtaku

It's just history

I justifiably fear major changes in anything from Microsoft because the first time they do anything new they generally completely cock it up.

After that, the third version is often great! (Aborted Vista -> Vista -> Win7) If they don't cancel the product first, which is unlikely here.

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The iPhone 4S in depth: More than just a vestigial 'S'

oldtaku
Devil

Antenna diversity

Switching between two antennas for tx and rx based on signal strength is not a new thing - atheros 802.11a/g wifi has had it for years and years, and of course 802.11n does even more complex things with three antennas.

I'm not sure how common it is in cellphone radio chipsets, but there's no black magic here. You have two antennas oriented in different directions (and in this case maybe one has sweaty fingers all over it). Unless you have two completely receive/decode paths you check the backup antenna occasionally for signal strength and when it's consistently stronger than the main you switch to that as the main. There's a lot of finesse in your algorithm design (how often do you check the other channel, how much hysteresis, etc) but this is pretty standard.

And stands a pretty good chance of fixing the problem.

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Microsoft demos creepy car stalking system

oldtaku

It may be creepy, but it's what most parents here want

Most of the Internet is for porn. Almost every parent wants this, even if they won't admit it.

Services like this are proliferating like mad over on the US side of the pond, since we're raising our kids in a smothering atmosphere of manufactured fear - if you let your kids outside or lose sight of them for a second, they'll be raping old minority nuns in a flash or get brutally dismembered by Mexican flash mobs snorting meth, and that would mean you're a Bad Parent. Most mothers here would have no problem chipping their kids like a dog if it were allowed.

You guys are already living in a surveillance society, you should understand this - though I guess there's a bit of difference between your government knowing everywhere you're going by tracking your cell phone and your mother knowing the same.

So Microsoft's giving consumers what they want for once - parents get tracking, kids get big garishly colored social network tiles.

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David May, parallel processing pioneer

oldtaku

Amen. Message passing is where it's at.

As someone who has to constantly deal with multithreading hell, I fully agree. Debugging other people's synchronization errors, mutex and semaphore issues, performance cratering due to shared access issues, ararararargh. Replace it all with message queues and it's so much more deterministic, and faster as well. The queues have to be synced and high performance, but that's a single point to optimize. You can still share huge areas of memory (if you do have shared memory) by passing pointers but using the messages as permission to access and doing that infrequently.

Something with super-fast efficient message passing like Barrelfish just makes me weak in the knees - not worrying about cache coherency is a great thing. So c'mon, don't say 'The Americans' when you just mean Intel. Even Microsoft realizes Intel is dogging the wrong bone again, like they did with the P4 before the Israelis showed them the right way.

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