153 posts • joined Tuesday 20th September 2011 22:56 GMT
Rather irked by this entire process
The entire business of appearing before government committees is, to my mind, largely a waste of public money. It appears to me to be nothing more than publicly funded advertising for the members of the committee to try and appear to be doing the right thing in the eyes of their voters. I've rarely seen these circuses make public policy changes as a result of their "investigations".
Admittedly its fiction, but Skyfall made the point rather well when the female committee member just kept ripping into MI6 without any testimony or any comment from MI6. Which appears to be more or less the point of the exercise - committee members get to espouse their political views for personal gain.
Re: Probably because
There may not be a legal duty to shareholders to pay as little tax as possible, but there is a duty to pay the tax as per the law. If the law doesn't require them to repatriate funds and pay 35% tax on that transaction, why should they do that?
Re: Not so nice when the shoe's on the other foot is it Microsoft?
As opposed to when they're using their search monopoly to cross-subsidise free products into other areas, or turning off Exchange Active Sync ...
Turning off EAS made sense to me as MS require royalty payments for using the patents related to EAS of serveral US$/month/user. Why should Google pay MS for a technology when it has other open, non-patent-encumbered, protocols available?
I've yet to find any news articles stating that they've disable CalDAV or CardDAV.
MS were the first (and so far AFAIK the only) competitor that whined to about it, presumably because Windows Phone DOESN'T implement CalDAV or CardDAV, and so they're SOL. That's a MS problem for not building in operability for non-Exchange environments, not a Google problem.
I strongly oppose them, they have no right to cut a bill paying customer off. Period.
Really? Checked your supply contract? I bet there are a TON of get-out clauses in it that benefit the supplier and leave you without heat or power.
Re: Happy with mine
I'd be surprised if it will be as effective for you in a year. The "ooh shiny" aspect of the service may wear off and you'd be back where you were before in terms of consumption.
And you only mentioned benefits for electricity. Where are the benefits of the gas meter? I already have my radiators in rooms I don't frequently use set as low as they go, so I don't see any benefit from smart gas meters at all.
Solution looking for a problem?
I still have yet to see a convincing, well reasoned, argument for this. Other than not having to pay G4S to come read meters by hand to make sure people are not telling fibs in their self-submitted meter readings, I see absolutely no advantage to this scheme, and tons of disadvantages. Especially when you are told it will "help manage grid load" (in other words, you can have your supply turned off to stop the voltage or frequency for other people dipping too much). If it's done at the meter, I hope to !($^*(@% the security is good.
Oh, wait, look at all the insecure SCADA devices out there. This can't go wrong, can it? <groan>
Re: Simple solution
You forgot to mention that you should pay by cash.
Also, don't use a phone with GPS as there is allegedly a way for the operator to send a query to the phone to get its GPS co-ordinates (if GPS is enabled)
Or just give up and realise that your right to privacy is a myth.
Re: Bad idea and overkill
Even better, I strongly suspect that the FIDO stack will allow you to be tracked amongst all these different sites, even if you're not Facebook or the Govt.
Re: The real reason they want them turned off
BA lets you use the IFE system from the minute you sit down now, but during takeoff and landing you have to use their headphones, presumably to prove that you're plugged into the IFE and not your own iPod or other device. I assume that's so that you can hear any announcement over the PA which interrupts the IFE and broadcasts to the headsets too.
Which is another silly rule as most of their headphones (apart from the ones for J and F which tend to have odd connectors - audio and power so they can do noise cancelling) work just fine in non-BA issued gear, or at least they used to.
I've noticed when flying that on a large proportion of flights I've taken from the US to the UK over the past decade, on approach to LHR I hear the distinctive Nokia feature phone SMS received tone, presumably their carrier welcoming them to a foreign country. I suspect with the demise of the feature phone I won't hear them as much now.
My parents were on a Virgin Atlantic 747 flight a few years back and related to me that the captain tried starting the engines, couldn't, and came over the PA saying for people to turn their phones off as it was causing interference. I highly doubt this, as the engine winding down noise was about the same time as the announcement, and there is no way the captain could have deduced the problem that quickly. I suspect that the cabin crew complained about people not turning devices off to the captain, and he started the air bleed from the APU to the engines to spin the first engine up but didn't turn the fuel on so the engine would never fire. Either that or he did that every flight to scare people.
American Airlines got permission from someone, I presume the FAA, to let passengers turn their phones on once they cleared the runway upon landing. Why AA can do that and other airlines can't I have no idea.
Re: I'll give it a pass
My main concern with SSDs is that often the firmware needs to be updated to fix bugs that weren't exposed in the dev. cycle. Most vendors release new drive firmware at some point to address issues, whether degraded performance or something else. Nearly all upgrade notes say to back up the data first, in other words - this may brick your SSD
As for data loss, 99% of SSDs are still relatively small. End result: it doesn't cost that much extra to have a backup kept on a traditional rust based drive. Even if it's just the OS and apps, that backup will save you a lot of time if the SSD goes Tango Uniform.
Re: Rip-off UK pricing
They have a UK subsidiary and are therefore subject to UK tax laws. Which doesn't mean much as has been recently seen.
Do published policy and actual behaviour agree?
The report seems to focus on what the companies say they'll do. However, I don't think they looked for evidence that they do that in all cases. That may be nearly impossible to obtain, but the "inform user" gold star could very easily be made of fools gold if the companies don't follow through with their commitment.
They also need to add a star explicitly for not holding data longer than needed. A lot of companies will fall foul of this, which just gives law enforcement even more data to pick through when they send their NSLs to sidestep all the pesky due process issues.
e.g. Apple isn't really clear on how long they keep iMessage data from what I can see.
While I can understand the lure of doing otherwise, I wish companies would segregate data to jurisdiction specific silos. e.g. EU customer data was retained in the EU and under the laws of the EU and not shared with other countries unless necessary (e.g. send an iMessage to someone outside the EU)
Don't assume your information will be safe with the government
I never assume that. Some minister will leave their briefcase on a train or something and some random list of peoples details will become public knowledge.
I also see no reason to store the documents beyond a few days to enable the validation has been done. All they are doing is painting a huge "hack us" target on their back.
Re: What will they do with the overseas assets?
Really? What on earth makes you think that the reinvestment will be limited to the US economy? People outside the US are allowed to own stocks and bonds in US listed companies, and even if the stock and bond holders *do* live in the USA, there is nothing to force them to invest in US based companies or buy goods made in the USA . How many of them go out and buy Audis or BMWs or Mercs? OK, the dealer in the USA gets a cut but the rest probably goes overseas. Or maybe they invest in an private jet made by Airbus, Embraer, etc.
Also, I believe the last tax holiday was done because the companies themselves pledged to grow their US operations, hire more staff, etc. That might have happened with some of the money, but the vast majority of it went straight to the people who need it least, or they promptly outsourced everything to India or China and told their US workforce to get stuffed.
Trickle down economics doesn't work as well as its supporters claim. All that happens when you cut taxes for the upper 1% of the income bracket is that they have even more money that doesn't go to the bottom of the income bracket, that probably need it more. If a person has a net worth measured in hundreds of millions (or more) already, an extra 5% off the top rate of tax for them isn't suddenly make them go out and hire more gardeners or have some redecorate the house and actually pass on their wealth.
They're more likely to invest in companies and then demand said companies increase their profit margin by laying off their US staff and hiring overseas. Not exactly the stimulus you want, is it?
Re: Deliberately misleading nonsense.
As revealed by the fact that PlusNet is just BT in drag, with the exception of Virgin, ALL these brands are selling essentially one product -- internet over BT's copper wires (whether via Fibre to the Cabinet or not).
Sort of. OK, the "last mile" is the same, but unbundling comes into the picture with most large competitors so the DSLAM is theirs. The backhaul - no idea. Could be someone different, or could be across the BT network (so why have their own DSLAM?)
You're also ignoring the services on top of the broadband, e.g. static IPs, and a tech support that isn't based in India.
Plusnet just happens to be BT more than most of the competition.
Re: What will they do with the overseas assets?
@David Kelly 2
The assumption with any of these repatriation schemes is that the money is used to invest in the USA. Generally it isn't. The last tax holiday for reparation back to the USA most of the funds went to stockholders and bondholders and bonuses to executives and things like that and did sweet F.A. to boost the economy.
Or to put it another way: rich people find ways of getting richer, but the rest are left to fend for themselves.
Re: As boring as watching...
but it makes molasses look positively speedy in comparison. The Boston Molasses Disaster proved molasses isn't that slow at ~35 MPH.
So much for "as slow as molasses"
Maybe we need to start saying "as slow as pitch" instead?
Weighting of the topics
I love how the "Data Security" topic is 10% of the exam score but has ~20 bullet points under it, and "Designing highly available, cost efficient, fault tolerant, scalable systems" is 60% and has 9 bullet points under it.
I won't be sitting the AWS Certified Solutions Architect exam any time soon, but I hope it is worth more than some of the other vendor courses I took which turned out to be "here is our product data sheet, regurgitate it without showing any understanding of the contents"
Re: So what happens when the bonds mature?
Depends on the distribution of debt across the different bonds. Note that some bonds mature in 10 and 30 years. I'm sure they can make enough money back in their USA business alone to pay off the bonds if they weight the distribution towards the longer maturation dates. They may also be some tax dodge relating to overseas bondholders, etc.
Re: What will they do with the overseas assets?
You forget that they buy a lot of stuff overseas already, not only assembly but also parts, etc.
As for the R&D bit, I'd prefer they keep it in the west somewhere. I've seen what R&D out of Asia is like.
As for the tax laws, they need serious overhaul, but the trick is getting the governments to act. No individual government wants to be the first to close the loopholes as they think they'll be at a disadvantage and companies will shift stuff around to minimise their tax exposure there and use the fact that other countries haven't caught up to their advantage. It requires co-ordinated action from multiple countries, and you've seen how well that has worked with such endeavours as emissions trading.
In other words, don't hold your breath. I think there is a better chance of the Monster Raving Loonie Party becoming a serious contender in UK politics than there is of co-ordinated tax avoidance reduction across the EU, let alone the rest of the world.
Re: Thank you, FAA...
And what is apparently not being mentioned as much in the mainstream press (haven't checked more aviation centric sites) is that the FAA may limit the ETOPS (Engines Turn Or Passengers Swim, sorry, Extended Twin Operations) rating for the 787, which also reduces the routes it is viable for (or makes the airlines fly way longer routes to stay within the ETOPS rating). That means that the 787 may not be the dream plane that many airlines are hoping for, unless it can keep it's ETOPS 180 rating that the B777/A330 enjoys.
And until there is a full, and publicly published report on the CAUSE of the failures of the battery, I agree. The solution just prevents the batteries from (HOPEFULLY) making a mess. It doesn't stop the problem.
Airline cabin fittings (seats, etc) are required to be tested to prove they are either fire resistant or do not contribute to a fire. Unless Boeing deliberately triggered a thermal issue in the batteries during the test flights, the solution ISN'T TESTED TO ADDRESS THE PROBLEM.
Considering that none of the published reports investigating the existing battery incidents on B787s has provided a cause for the incidents, the modifications are no more than further protective measures. Only once the root cause is found for the existing incidents (and any future ones) can the charging circuits be replaced/updated to avoid future problems.
No, 587 is submission (RFC 2476)
TCp port 366 is for ODMR (On Demand Mail Relay). I even had to look it up as I'd never heard of it before, and if you read the RFC (RFC 2645) it is NOT for what you think it is.
However, I agree that people whining about port 25 being blocked should use other ports. And if they insist on using port 25, then they deserve all the spam that they get.
Re: Blocking access to Remote SMTP servers?
Your "I can't think of a more expensive method of sending spam." comment implies that the spammers would sign up for mobile service and use it to send spam. You miss the point of these blocks. Very few, if any, spammers use their OWN link and haven't for years.
The block on port 25 outbound is because of botnets and trojaned PCs (and I guess smartphones and fondleslabs at this point too, although it is still mostly PCs)
Also, TECHNICALLY, you should NEVER send e-mail over TCP port 25 from anything other than another MTA. MUAs (i.e. outlook, thunderbird, mail.app, etc) should use TCP port 587 (submission). If your SMTP server isn't listening on port 25 then it's your own problem.
(I haven't read the RFCs recently, but there is also TCP/465 (smtps). However I can't remember if its for MUAs or MTAs)
Re: Business use?
Businesses are doing it already in much larger numbers than people think. SalesForce is the prime example. If used as a sales tool and not just CRM/support, not only do they hold your internal price lists but also full records of all current, past and prospective customers and your relationships with them.
Then you've got a whole slew of SMEs using Google Apps, etc.
Do I agree with the outsourcing of business critical data like this? Not particularly, but then again I appear to be in the minority. Co-workers have no issues uploading sensitive data to Dropbox, Basecamp, Google Apps, SalesForce, etc. I used to point out to people the risks they were taking (especially since we have internal resources for doing file sharing, collaboration, etc), but I've long since given up.
I don't think the article disagrees with that
What the article disagrees with is the regulatory response, and the rhetoric from the politicians who were falling over themselves to point fingers at everyone BUT themselves (despite some indications that deregulation of banking, and lack of a sufficiently competent and resourced regulator or other organisation tasked with making sure they weren't being dumb, played a part in the subsequent collapse)
The regulators view the investment banking divisions as the cause, and view ring-fencing investment banking from commercial banking as the solution
However, if it wasn't the investment banking activities that caused the collapse of the banks, then the regulatory reforms aren't worth the toilet paper they're printed on.
Re: Here's a thought...
That only happens if they reset the POP UID (as seen with the UIDL command). I don't know about Google and Yahoo!, but I know that when I do mail migrations I try and preserve the UID for that very reason.
IMAP is more difficult to preserve UID (for various reasons), but also easier to do migrations for since you don't normally care. Since the read, etc, flags are attributes you can migrate those quite easily and not have to worry about preserving the UID and folder UIDVALIDITY.
The only downside to not preserving UIDVALIDITY/UID in IMAP migrations is that the IMAP client will force a full resync of the headers and message metadata (at least if it follows RFCs), so immediately afterwards the platform can be under much higher load, but that is a one-time deal and most users won't notice the resync.
Re: Wait, they run an ISP...
Large companies like BT, Sky, etc, like outsourcing large parts of their service for multiple reasons, but I think the biggest one is transfer of liability. The supplier is responsible for providing a stated uptime and there are financial penalties if they don't. If they ran the operation in house they wouldn't have that luxury.
- by bidding the service out you can usually force the price down. In-sourced services are tend to be less flexible on price
- economy of scale. even someone the size of BT or Sky can't pull the tricks that Google pulled with gmail because they don't have enough users
- in most cases you reduce risk from security breaches. if the outsourced platform is compromised, they typically don't have a stepping point into the internal systems of the ISP or other parts of the service.
- reduced liabilities from service improvements and necessary upgrades. I haven't seen one of these contracts, but I would tend to suspect there aren't limits on number of messages per days, etc, it's probably more around numbers of active users. So if a platform (e.g. Facebook or Twitter) comes along, gets very popular and suddenly the number of messages being processed dramatically increases, the ISP is no longer responsible for the cost - the supplier either built it in to their margins or loses out. In either case, the ISP doesn't care, it's not their problem, they just expect it to be fixed.
There are other reasons as well, but I don't particularly want to get into those in a public forum.
Some of the above can also act as downsides, and when outsourcing you can be subject to network instability outside your own network, but I'd best in most of those cases they set up a peering across multiple pubic and private peering points to remove the risk of a transit provider having issues.
Re: BBC for the headlines
It's also one step closer to the loss of (perceived) anonymity on the Internet. If papers push most of their content behind subscription systems, it becomes very easy to link a commentator to a verified credit card billing address.
Given how the UK police and security services (as well as our lovely friends in the USA) have over-reacted numerous times to innocent comments posted on the Intertubes, I'm not convinced that this is a step in the right direction.
Re: Not much of a quadrant
Hardly. I've seen competitive situations where purchases are made entirely based on the Gartner MQ positioning.
So while techies question their usefulness and accuracy, their role in purchasing decisions is unfortunately all to real.
"Security" through obscurity? Oh no, not again?
"This is to address concerns raised by the FBI, Justice Department and other agencies that releasing exact numbers might reveal information about investigations"
I'd love to know how knowing exact numbers of NSLs and users could in any way shape or form reveal information about ongoing investigations when you're dealing with the number of users Google has on their systems. If there were 59 NSLs in 2012 about 214 users, what does that tell you? Not much.
If there was 1 NSL with 23 users then that may be a different matter entirely, as the single NSL DOES provide data. But assuming that on the typical year they get many more than single digits, I'm not sure how you could derive any information about ongoing investigations from more exact numbers.
Re: DNSSEC and GSLB
Yes, but with GSLB the answer can change on *every* query. Admittedly between a limited set of answers, but it's still nowhere near your situation. Either you have to load signed zones for each possible answer onto the GSLB device, or you have to load the signing keys onto the device. The latter is undesirable in the extreme.
DNSSEC and GSLB
How does DNSSEC fit in with GSLB? Most of the big tech players have distributed web sites relying on DNS servers that change their replies based on data on where the query came from. I would suspect that would not play well with DNSSEC
The other tricks some people use is injecting BGP routes and have multiple boxes answer for the same IP, but the load is "distributed" based on shortest path routing. That would probably be OK for DNSSEC, but it'd still be a pain to have to sign all those different zone files.
Re: "he drove the car off the road when it ran out of petrol."
…Wait, what? The damn car finally runs out of petrol, and he that's when he decides to drive the car off the road? This contradicts the info that he had a full tank of gas. Half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark, and we're wearing sunglasses.
No engine = no power assisted braking or steering. He might not have been able to control the car properly without the power assist. And a ditch is probably a lot more forgiving than the central reservation or another car.
Maybe the French police need to look a the reinforced steel tube bars that they fit to American police cars to allow them to push other cars or assist in cases like this. On the Pennsylvania roads there can be no hard shoulder on the Interstates so the cop uses the tube arrangement (and there rubber pads on it too) to push the car to safety at the nearest off-ramp (never lived in PA but driving through once I saw it being done)
Re: GPS for Dummies
Sorry, which GPS is actually giving you an indication of which *lane* you're in? It might know "northbound" vs "southbound" or similar (which is carriageway information, not lane) but it knows that purely from your actual direction. Sat navs "snap-to" roads, allowing them to be very accurate. Try coming off a road onto a farm track and watch it lose its way quite quickly.
Even better, if it tells you to take a slip road off the motorway, and you don't, it'll take quite a while to figure out. It assumes that you are following it's instructions until you exceed the "snap-to" failure threshold. Normally it takes my car until I pass the roundabout at the end of the slip road before it figures out that I've ignored it's advice because near to home I know the roads better than it does (most sat-navs don't figure traffic lights into time calculations, so while the way it sends me is shorter, it takes longer because of the stop-start traffic. So I go the long way because there are no traffic lights. Usually get home sooner)
Of course, if you wanted to get real accuracy you'd use the encrypted GPS signal only (officially) available to the military. I forget what the accuracy is, but it's sub 1 metre from memory.
Where will they put all this? The airport is hemmed in on all sides by roads (101 goes past the northern end of the runway and Interstate 880 goes past the southern end, for example) and existing buildings and facilities like car parks. There is some vacant property nearby (at least at the last time the sat got a pic for google maps), but it's the other side of Coleman Ave from the airport.
"We are working relentlessly to combat those involved in tax evasion and fraud and bring them before the courts. With over £10 billion being stolen from UK finances each year by criminals, it is serious crime which we are determined to eradicate."
Is that £10 billion calculated the same way that the movie and recording industries calculate their losses due to piracy?
Or to put it another way, if they know they're losing £10 billion a year due to tax fraud, why haven't they stopped it?
Re: @Mark Cathcart
So you just admitted that Linux is more popular on your servers than MS Windows.
No, they admitted that most Dell customers don't want to pay for the retail versions of the OS's Dell offers. People with Microsoft volume licensing probably fit in that category as well.
Re: I don't get it
The Federal law won't affect state law. The Federal law already exists, but has an expiration date. Really. all they're doing is removing the expiration. Since the state taxes already exist and are not challenged/overruled by the existing federal law, there will be no change there.
Power fail behaviour?
One thing a lot of reviews miss out, and given the increasing ubiquity of the drives is somewhat worrying, is whether the drive contains a supercap or small battery or something so that it can drain the RAM cache to flash when the power fails. Else any writes that were in flight at the time may be lost, which could do a nasty job of scrambling your filesystem (depending on the FS, of course)
"Several airlines already have apps available that provide passengers with electronic board passes. All they need to do is change those apps to use the NFC chip and that's that."
The "Secure Element" in NFC is generally the SIM card. You can bet your bottom dollar that the telco's will try to force companies who want to use the secure element to pay for the right. They're losing their lucrative revenue streams as people start using iMessage instead of SMS, etc. They're looking for new revenue streams and NFC is in their sights.
Re: "power backup systems"
@AC 1 and 2
Hydraulics in older planes were driven from pumps driven from the engines. Some planes have A and B hydraulic systems, bigger wide body planes tended to have 3 separate hydraulic systems for redundancy.
Unfortunately, a number of accidents have proven the hydraulic systems have a massive single point of failure - in order to be useful, they have to back each other up. This tends to mean that for controlling the tail surfaces (horizontal and vertical stabilisers), all 3 systems congregate at that point. The JAL 747 crash and another crash in the USA, I think of a DC-10 if I remember right, where damage to the tail from an uncontained engine fan failure rendered all 3 hydraulic systems inoperative as the fluid leaked out
Preventative measures (including automatic cut off valves to stop the fluid leaking out when pressure is lost) have been introduced since, but the risk is still there.
The benefit of the electrically operated controls is that if you have damage in the tail, you MAY lose the tail controls but the ailerons, flaps, etc still work so you have a better chance to control the aircraft
Re: "power backup systems"
@Xamol , the APU is used on the ground to run lighting, heating/cooling, etc when ground power is unavailable. Most main airports have ground power available on articulated arms that swing out under the plane and a large plug is put into a socket on the plane just next to the front landing strut.
In flight the 2 main engines drive the generators for aircraft ops, and if the main engine generators are unavailable then the APU can step in to ensure the plane is still flyable.
However the BIG change from traditional electronics on the 787 is that the main engine generators are NOT fixed voltage. The APU starter battery was one of the components that had a fault, but I believe there have also been other batteries, likely used to try and help smooth out the voltage fluctuations from the main engine units, that have had problems on the 787
Boeing claimed that by not having a constant velocity drive for the main engine generators it would save weight, and thus fuel, but it has also added complexity to a system that MUST WORK. The A&B DC power buses on jets pretty much power every critical system on the plane (avionics, radio, nav systems, etc). Boeing took a big risk in messing with a decades old proven design. Interestingly, while Airbus is launching the A350 to compete (sort of) against the 787, they're not messing with the flight controls or power systems.
I don't get why TWC are complaining
Not sure I get this. Under most BGP routing arrangements, it's "hot potato". You hand off to a peer/transit connection as soon as you can. If TWC have a nationwide backbone, then TWC will carry the content to their customer from the peering point where they got the traffic. I fail to see why arranging an interconnect with NetFlix changes that, unless TWC are playing games with their BGP announcements to shot cut hot potato routing and force the sender to carry the traffic to a point closer to the end customer.
And to my mind, direct peering and not needing such hefty transit links, is a good thing. For both NetFlix and TWC.
The only scam I can see is TWC potentially trying to get NetFlix to pay for access to the TWC eyeballs. Good luck with that.
Re: Like the smog scene in "The Difference Engine"
"Air pollution is actually GOOD in that sense, reflects more sunlight"
Not all pollution reflects sunlight. Soot emissions from burning wood and diesel engines is alleged to be nearly as bad as carbon dioxide for global warming, or so sayeth the BBC.
Re: No surprise, I predict that there will be more to come
IPv4 and IPv6 can co-exist. There was never any plan for an overnight switch from v4 to v6. IPv6 was designed to run in a dual stack environment where both v4 and v6 addresses were in use. If you were connecting to a system that also had a v4 and a v6 address, then local configuration will determine if you make the connection over v4 or v6, with the default to be to use v6.
Of course this isn't perfect. People can have a v6 iP that isn't able to connect to your v6 IP, and people don't want to wait 90 seconds for the v6 connection to time out before retrying on v4. This lead companies to develop a standard called "Happy Eyeballs" which try and learn whether to use v4 or v6. Yahoo! also sponsored an extension to BIND to try and help mitigate the split network scenario.
The real reasons nothing happened until it was too late was lethargy and inertia. Vendors didn't want to spend the (considerable) effort in making their products IPv6 compliant as it wasn't affecting purchasing decisions in the vast majority of cases. Customers weren't asking for V6 because either the people making the decisions didn't understand or because they didn't want to pay more to get v6. End user devices (DSL modelms, etc) didn't support v6 as ISPs didn't offer it, and ISPs didn't offer it because no devices could use it. A set of classic chicken and egg scenarios.
Yes, IPv6 was largely driven by academia, and that can be witnessed by the original specs for IPv6 autoconfiguration where the end client figured out what the subnet it was on was and then used its Ethernet MAC address as the last 48 bits of the submit and hey presto, you got a unique routable IPv6 IP. Its why IPv6 subnets tend to be /48s - the 48 bits in the MAC. It wasn't until years later that someone pointed out that MACs are globally unique (or are meant to be) so it didn't matter what network you were on, your computer could be uniquely identified through the IP it chose. A new autoconfiguration mechanism was released in the past 2-3 years to address that.
Even though Cisco has supported IPv6 natively in IOS for years, initial implementations were not carrier grade. IPv4 was handled through very efficient DCEF, which IPv6 packets were process switched, a very expensive process. Only recently has Cisco moved IPv6 into DCEF (or whatever they call it today).
As for CGN (Carrier Grade NAT, the industry term for what Plusnet is trying), there are a lot of implications and not all of them are well thought out. The issues raised in the article are relevant, and search engines and other such web sites are already concerned about the rise of CGN as it impacts their operations to not only monetise their search results and make them more relevant by using geolocation, it makes defending the sites against attack a lot more difficult as you can't just block the IP and affect a single user any more. The search engines have been in talks with ISPs for years about IPv4 to IPv6 transitions, and the need for CGN as an interim phase. Search engines would much rather we all move to v6, but thats not going to happen any time soon.
CGN also has implications for non HTTP traffic such as VOIP, as SIP really REALLY doesn't like NAT. That is one issue that I don't think is easily solved in CGN deployments without sniffing and rewriting the SIP control packets, which would be a non-trivial exercise with high traffic deployments.
Re: KISS = Keep it simple keep it stupid. Write Automated Test Cases
"As far as I know Google was the first to revolutionise that and automatically create it's index"
Uh, not AFAIK. AltaVista operated an automated crawler at least 3 years before Google came along, as did Inktomi (now part of Yahoo!). Yahoo! even had used Inktomi search results before they bought them, but their main sell (at the time) was their manually maintained content index.
Google's innovation was its PageRank algorithm which made its results more relevant to the search query.
"And that only makes sense if those sites have an entitlement to web traffic. "
No, it makes sense if Google is acting in an anti-competitive manner and leveraging its dominance in the search market to push its other services in preference to organic search results from its crawler. It keeps claiming to only display organic results, and yet its own results are always first. There is also no justification for its use of reviews from 3rd party sites in its own product review section. Sure, if people submitted the reviews to Google, fine, but scraping them from other review sites and showing them as part of Google's product review section is wrong, especially as I don't remember links back to the review site (unlike search results)
Microsoft got smacked for making it easier to use IE (and in fact making it impossible to remove) than it was to go get another browser, and Netscape went bust - it is open to debate if it was a direct result of the MS action or natural evolution, although a strong case can be made that the MS action was a significant contributing factor in the demise of Netscape.
I see no reason why what Google is doing is any different to what MS did - abuse dominance.