* Posts by Whitter

589 posts • joined 13 Aug 2007

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Google tries to lure .NET devs with PowerShell cloud bait

Whitter
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Meh

Google drops

Given Google's tendency to loose interest in their latest this-that-or-the-other, how many developers will take the risk that working in this new environment is worth it over the long haul?

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Delete Google Maps? Go ahead, says Google, we'll still track you

Whitter
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Unhappy

Re: Too late

The usual line is "Google did not make anyone available for comment" or the like.

Google itself was (most likely) available for comment but chose not to make one.

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Meet Deliveroo's ‘bold and impactful’ new logo. No, really

Whitter
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Pint

Re: This is a spoof right?

Who cares? Beer for everybody!

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Whitter
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Happy

Re: K9

As indeed did I .My very next thought was "but it isn't April 1st."

It's considerably worse than the London 2012 / Lisa Simpson shocker.

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Paint your wagon (with electric circuits) but leave my crotch alone

Whitter
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Devil

"weather triggered the ... alarm"

We once had a neighbour who's burglar alarm suffered similarly, though it was wet weather that it suffered from. It took months of phoning the police to check-up on the "break-in" (particularly after they had asked us to stop) until such time as the police decided the bother of getting the owner to fix their alarm was less than the bother of talking to us again.

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Ankers away! USB-C cables recalled over freakin' fried phone fears

Whitter
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Boffin

Education please!

Why is the cable identifying itself as anything other than "USB-C compliant"?

Any information beyond that should be between the things connected by the cable...?

(Answer is very likely an over-engineered "cable" but it would be nice to know in what way!)

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Excel hell messes up ~20 per cent of genetic science papers

Whitter
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Trollface

Please don't use Excel

That is all.

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Google tells popup ads to p*** off on mobes

Whitter
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Unhappy

Re: Jimbo Wales is watching you pee

A fundraiser for an organisation with more money than it knows what to do with.

Other than trying to get even more of course.

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Chocolate Factory exudes Nougat as Android 7 begins rollout

Whitter
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Meh

Ever increasing hardware demands

"The Nexus 5 ... doesn't have the hardware chops to run the new operating system."

Is it not possible to write a better OS that doesn't have an even greater hardware requirement than its forbears? Or just not desirable?

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Google had Obama's ear during antitrust probe

Whitter
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Joke

House of Cards / Tusk

Art imitating life eh? Who knew?!

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IT delays helped derail UK's historic child sexual abuse inquiry

Whitter
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Paris Hilton

Surely FOI applies to the IICSA ?

"IICSA would not name the head of security nor was it prepared to detail the staffer's qualifications or experience"

Name of person? A senior role in a public office equals no expectation of privacy.

Qualifications? Absolutely no expectation of privacy.

It certainly looks like FOI should apply to the structure of the body (though not their evidence / deliberations thereon obviously)

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Google AdSense abused to distribute Android spyware

Whitter
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Mushroom

Sue, sue and sue again

Until enough web owners are made bankrupt for allowing 3rd parties access to their customers, this will never stop. The ad companies might not like it, but we are long past the point where ads can be delivered without being vetted by somebody who's job is on the line.

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'Daddy, what's a Blu-ray disc?'

Whitter
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Meh

Blu ray pricing cf. DVD

In the age of streaming, DVD sales are doing very well despite being an even more "forgotten" format. Blu ray's higher price is worth it for films with hi-level special effects, but otherwise why pay 30%+ over the DVD cost for pretty much the same viewing experience?

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The curious case of a wearables cynic and his enduring fat bastardry

Whitter
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Boffin

Re: Smart bulbs versus light switches

You've still got to get the power to the light so the wiring behind the plaster isn't going anywhere.

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Avoiding Liverpool was the aim: All aboard the world's ONLY moving aqueduct

Whitter
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Re: Excellent article

I thought similarly at first glance but the Falkirk wheel is really a super-duper lock rather than an super duper aqueduct. Super, duper regardless though!

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Fork YOU! Sure, take the code. Then what?

Whitter
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Meh

ownCloud vs Nextcloud

Is it only me that would rather NextCloud?

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Europe gives Privacy Shield one year to work

Whitter
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Unhappy

Government collaboration != judicial collaboration.

Though it sure look like it...

Oh well, scratch that then.

And the sue the Irish judiciary for acceding to political interference.

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Data's democratisation: Because there's no doh in Type 0

Whitter
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Boffin

Re. SCD link: Are those recommended usages?

Questions only: I have not worked in this area myself.

The "type 2" example seems to assume that Customer_Name is unique and fixed, else one could not traverse from the current record to a previous record unless one also adds a previous Customer_ID column, which would make it "not type 2". What did I miss here?

As for the type 6 example, is that Current_Flag column really worth the extra column when the data is derivable from the End_Date column? Would a Date/Time test on End_Date be notably slower than a bool check on Current_Flag Y/N? Would that depend if the date was a string or a DateTime?

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Shock: Apple patents the phone book

Whitter
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Boffin

Requirements for a patent

Not obvious: Which often boils down to "not done before" (which isn't the same but there you go)

Inventive : A requirement so rarely met, is it really a requirement anymore?

Utility: Must be useful (in its own right, not as a legal tool for bashing the competition!)

Embodiment: Somebody skilled-in-the-art must be able to read the patent and use it to build a device that does the useful thing.

The patent referred to has lots of "may this", "might that", "one could try this" and so on but doesn't seem to say "do this to achieve the useful thing in a manner a skilled-in-prior-art person would not have thought of" and so the requirements look a tad sketchy IMHO.

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Empty your free 30GB OneDrive space today – before Microsoft deletes your files for you

Whitter
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Paris Hilton

Bait and switch

I'm sure there are laws about that kind of thing...?

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Google slammed over its 'free' school service

Whitter
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Flame

Re: And is anyone surprised?

If you had to pay for the software they'd still sell your data.

Maximum profits are the only target,

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I want to learn about gamification but all I see is same-ification

Whitter
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Devil

Manowar

"If you're not into metal, you are not my friend"

There was always a good slice of comedy in metal!

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Police ICT Company head: Eat your cloud, cops, it's good for you

Whitter
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Devil

Cynical moi

But the sales pitch sounds like "Don't want to be responsible for the data? Get on board!"

With the likely intent that nobody can be identified as the DataController.

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'Nobody cares about your heart-rate'

Whitter
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Data for cources

If you have access to the heart rate on a treadmill, you likely have access to all the rest of its data too: patient name; age; weight; cause for test and so on (used to program the treadmill sequence appropriately). Add all that data up; fail the test; get hacked by the medical insurance man's phone who is sitting having a coffee upstairs; find one's insurance cancelled / premiums raised all of a sudden.

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Lester Haines: RIP

Whitter
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Unhappy

:(

I very much enjoyed his work here.

Condolences to all his friends and family.

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Microsoft releases open source bug-bomb in the rambling house of C

Whitter
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Boffin

Re: C is not an applications programming language

It also applies to a dynamic arrays allocated by malloc: so long as the operation(s) in question can be seen not to resize a local array, then only two boundary checks are required (e.g. a for loop over a const * const pointer)

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Apple quietly launches next-gen encrypted file system

Whitter
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Re: Case..

Case is a right bother for text entry on a phone/tablet is one instance.

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FBI tries again to get warrantless access to your browser history

Whitter
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Devil

Round them up

Is there a crime for "wilfully adding the breach of constitutional rights" that can be applied to senator(s) (and any politicos, think-tank members, public servants and lobbyists) so we can round these people up and stop them attempting the same shit over and over?

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Brexit? Cutting the old-school ties would do more for Brit tech world

Whitter
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Unhappy

Britain = London + Oxbridge

I'd argue it doesn't, but to many, the author seemingly included, it seems that way.

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Malicious Android apps slip into Google Play, top third party charts

Whitter
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Re: Disapproving the approvals

Form the developer documentation: "Caution Although the directories provided by getExternalFilesDir() and getExternalFilesDirs() are not accessible by the MediaStore content provider, other apps with the READ_EXTERNAL_STORAGE permission can access all files on the external storage, including these. If you need to completely restrict access for your files, you should instead write your files to the internal storage".

Sounds like you need to read the permissions somewhat better.

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Whitter
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FAIL

Disapproving the approvals

Android's shoddy approval system ("access files == access all files" for example) and the lack of permissions-on-action is the reason that my "smart phone" is most decidedly dumb. Two extra apps and that's my lot: every download is a risk I am not prepared to take. Hell, I don't even allow vanilla google apps to keep on with their rampant rights bloat - there are an ever growing list of google apps I haven't updated in months due to extra permissions.

They aren't thick, so the fact google doesn't seriously revisit the permissions suggests they don't want to for internal reasons. Tin-foil hat time?

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Spying on you using fake social media profiles: One Scots council could

Whitter
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Unhappy

"We had to have a policy"

Fair enough.

But a better policy would have been "we will not do this".

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UK.gov pays four fellows £35k to do nothing for three months

Whitter
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Meh

Simple is what simple does

Such rules have a simple basis: that management are simpletons and don't know how to allocate (and, were they competent, to modify) budgets, so they apply a simple rule, sit back, do sod all and take the (considerable) paycheck.

So we have a group of idiots doing nothing paying competent (or not) others to do nothing too.

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Clixta: A copyright-friendly way to share your family photos

Whitter
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Meh

Metadata from Clixta

will soon becomes metaless data when linked/copied into any other social media site (including the BBC et al) as inevitably will done by some clueless friend/relative/colleague.

Good effort though.

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Win XP, Flash, Java... healthcare makes easy pickings for hackers

Whitter
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Technical debt

The technical debt of the NHS is quite simply staggering. Even costing it would be a staggeringly expensive job. And while the FDA has nothing to do with the NHS, the companies that make medical equip must adhere to the (worst) requirements of both which are onerous indeed. As medical companies outwith phrama tend not to make much money, they aren't going to verify/validate the upgrade path for old equip they make nothing on, nor add new security features. So to be blunt: this isn't going to change, even if bad things do happen as a result.

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Irish researchers sweep smartphones clear of super bugs

Whitter
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Meh

A la les chickens

In mass-market use, won't this just lead to yet more highly-resistant bacteriological strains evolving?

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Chrome add-ons just became less scary, security-wise

Whitter
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Megaphone

How about a set of permissions that can allow for security?

For example: "access to files" refined into a set of permissions such as "access to files written and maintained by this application" (general app); "access to all file names and dates" (file manager app) and so on.

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'Panama papers' came from email server hack at Mossack Fonseca

Whitter
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Unhappy

Re: Anyone noticed ..

Who pays the piper etc. The ICIJ belongs to the Center for Public Integrity:

https://www.publicintegrity.org/about/our-work/supporters

I'm going to guess that the leak is likely honest enough. The processing of that leak will likely be politically/economically "regulated". then again, I'm a cynic in such matters, as I already belived this to be true without the papers!

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Done making the big stuff better? The path to Apple's mid-life crisis

Whitter
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Boffin

Companies are not living things

Old companies rarely create new stuff: new companies do that.

The old companies try to survive by buying the new companies, which they rarely understand well. I suggest that this is because companies typically act like living things, trying to survive come hell or high-water, when they should be no more that economic vehicles for getting stuff done - created for active purpose and allowed to dissolve once that purpose is no longer significant.

A better scenario is for the shareholders to sell their shares in the old and buy shares in the new, letting the old company dissolve when it no longer has anything to do. But that requires CEOs and employees who are not afraid of loosing position and "face" with a faster company-death cycle and shareholders who actively know about the companies they own. I don't see either of those things happening any time soon, so it is little more than idle speculation: never going to happen.

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Union warns of second round of 'massive' layoffs at IBM in Europe

Whitter
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Flame

Good for the goose...

Companies that treat their staff badly deserve to be badly treated by their staff.

All of them.

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UK.gov's Major Projects Authority ain't saving us any money, say MPs

Whitter
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Headmaster

... better equip ministers and senior civil servants ...

"... better equip ministers and senior civil servants responsible ... with the skills and wider awareness they need to deliver them ..."

Or maybe (a) don't employ civil servants for jobs they are not skilled to do and (b) don't let ministers get into any level of nitty gritty: policy only, then vamoosh.

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Web ads are reading my keystrokes and I can’t even spel propperlie

Whitter
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Holmes

Auto fill etc.

Some browsers will "helpfully" auto-fill and/or pre-cache as you are typing. Not too unlikely that such data gets sent off to the ad-men (or ladies).

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NIST set to shake up temperature with quantum thermometer

Whitter
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Thumb Up

Tricky

Tricky bit might be that it sounds very much like a particle measurement, while temperature is an ensemble property. But then again, tricky is what such people do!

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Your unpatchable, insecure Android mobe will feel right at home in the Internet of Stuff era

Whitter
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Unhappy

Cyanogen

I'm a Nexus user so vanilla works just fine for me. Any other droid seems to be running a greater risk by risk if they keep to supplier updates rather than "jailbreak" into the world of Cyanogen. A sad state of corporate affairs really: what value a brans name when you instantly throw their stuff away?

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Millions menaced as ransomware-smuggling ads pollute top websites

Whitter
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Re: Who's liable? El Reg tried to find out...

We are all in need of Team America: a class action vs nytimes or the like. They sold your security for their profit (profit = ease of "management" = no management 'cos that costs).

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Data protection: Don't be an emotional knee jerk. When it comes to the law, RTFM

Whitter
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Unhappy

Re: Law/Theory vs Practice

And should they go bankrupt and bought in a administration fire-sale, will I trust the new owners?

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Whitter
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Devil

... this will validate EU/US data transfers once more...

"... the new Privacy Shield has been negotiated and, with some additional oversights from the US and a little less snooping, this will validate EU/US data transfers once more..."

I'll admit to being entirely the target audience for this article: is this claim really leaglly true? I would not have thought so myself but, erm, haven't read the law or contracts...!

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Norman Conquest, King Edward, cyber pathogen and illegal gambling all emerge in Apple v FBI

Whitter
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Boffin

Outlaw

"... society accepts that the people that break its rules and laws should not be able to rely on those same laws to prevent them from being punished..."

What the author refers to is the original meaning of the term "outlaw": one who was outwith the law and the law *would not protect*. Being an outlaw was tantamount to walking around with a target on one's chest: anyone could do anything to you with no comeback.

As a result, being declared an outlaw was considered a very harsh penalty indeed. Not a default position taken before guilt has even been established!

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You're fired! No – you're acquired! Reality TV hits Silicon Valley startups

Whitter
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Paris Hilton

I get to pick ... the judges, the winner,

So what exactly do the "judges" do then?

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Surprise! That blood-pressure app doesn't measure blood pressure

Whitter
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Re: It's not a simple as it looks

As your doctor has had a look I'm sure all is well, but be aware that readings taken after waking are expected to be higher than normal: google "morning surge index" for more info (the index is a means to establish if a given surge is more/less than expected).

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