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* Posts by John F***ing Stepp

340 posts • joined 31 Aug 2007

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Ex-Oracle manager claims he was fired for asking to give Indian staff equal pay

John F***ing Stepp

If no one else will ask then . . .

Whats a Grecian earn?

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NSA data centre launch delayed as power surges 'melt metal, zap racks'

John F***ing Stepp

Has to be a color (colour) coding problem.

"OK, tell me again, which black wire is hot; which black wire is ground; and which black wire is to the super-secret self destruct mechanism?"

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Swiss space plane to launch robotic orbital debris destroyer

John F***ing Stepp

Must be a cheaper way to do this.

De-orbiting from LEO seems pretty easy, and as of now LEO is the problem area.

(Where all our manned stuff sits.)

Attach one of those 60-70s era mylar balloons to the sucker and it will come down on its own within 12 months (air drag); even earlier if it is hit with a solar flare.

I am just thinking of cheap; more fun would be ground based ablative laser systems perhaps controlled by a co-operative system of video gamers and background distributive processing.

(satelliteKiller@home)

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Your encrypted files are 'exponentially easier' to crack, warn MIT boffins

John F***ing Stepp

OK, encrypting something.

I tend to use a 1k or larger key; sometimes many times the actual information length. This key is, of course, based on that dandy pseudo random function with either the time of day to the millisecond or the actual message as the seed.

Most of these things are rotations (remember ROT 13?) around the 256 ascii set, the number of rotations used against the key and message are many and randomly based. This allows you to play with modular math.

I used a conversion to hex mostly to allow the message (or log in, in some cases) to be sent as post (well, you try to escape a chunk of binary.)

This essentially doubles post size, but a real clever person could encrypt the hex code and throw it back into hex (rinse, repeat, etc.)

Most of this is just because it is fun and fairly easy.

Now if we were dealing with credit card numbers or socials I suppose I would have to get serious.

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John F***ing Stepp

Re: Compression

(Sorry, wordy.)

Actually, to increase entropy on a bit of data one would decompress it.

That is, you have 4 kilobytes of data, send 8 kilobytes after encryption. One way of doing this is to cut down on the alphabet used, sending data as fake genome information GATC and so forth or just send as Hex code, the less letters in the alphabet the longer the word size.

Of course this schema is just an add on to existing encypherment; the problem being as I see it is we have simplified the number of actual gross methods.

What happens, I wonder, when a machine runs across some new method?

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End of an era as Firefox bins 'blink' tag

John F***ing Stepp

Damn.

Thereby dies the black text helicopter.

(a truly moving bit of ascii art.)

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Terror cops swoop on couple who Googled 'backpacks' and 'pressure cooker'

John F***ing Stepp

Based on a true life story. . .

Well, not really.*

(But, it would be so cool if this actually did happen; it would validate my massive purchase of tin foil in the last few years.)

*Really did not happen.

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How the clammy claws of Novell NetWare were torn from today's networks

John F***ing Stepp

One of the (other things) that killed off netware.

Larger hard drives.

It took 2 or 3 days to compsurf a 20 megabyte drive; suddenly, you had a 200 megabyte monster available and the customer wanted it. Novell tryed to soldier on with something called a hotfix and in some cases this worked. In the case of the machines I worked on the supplier sold us hard drives that were crap (company is still around and probably still crap but I don't feel the need to be sued.)

I would end up increasing the hotfix area every week as more and more sectors were going bad, eventually the customer converted over to a windows net work which had no problem working with crappy hard drives.

In a perfect world (hard drive wise) Novell would still be king.

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Forget Snowden: What have we learned about the NSA?

John F***ing Stepp

My opinion from the US

The level of spying seems to be much less than I expected and I wish that it had remained secret.

Because while secret it was constrained by being secret; the Feds would not deploy a nuke on a parking violation offender. Now, of course, if I telephone my lawyer and enter into a conspiracy to avoid a parking ticket the NSA can feel free to drop any and all collected information in the inbox of the local Stazi.

Of course over where you all live it is 1984 all over again and I feel for you.

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Giant human-powered quadricopter wins $250,000 Sikorsky Prize

John F***ing Stepp

Re: Size (and slowness) is everything

I like that explanation, I really do and I am not going to down vote you but.

Those are wings and not air screws; Bernoulli effect applies more than brute force inclined plane.

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Adobe kills Creative Suite – all future features online only

John F***ing Stepp

I used to go to software flea markets and buy abandonware

And sometimes I would require an internet connection to use the software.

An internet connection that no longer existed because the only links existed in the "After Cloud" and was only available to "internet mediums".

Which since "internet mediums" don't exist means I bought a cheap "box of rocks".

Adobe had best hope that Gimp and Gimp2 never become replacements or that people will not decide to get by with MSpaint.

And if I used Adobe, I would be on a scramble for a replacement,just in case.

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Virgin Media: SO SORRY we fined your dead dad £10 for unpaid bill

John F***ing Stepp

Back before Data Base systems became ubiquitous

I once wrote "Not interested, dead" in the call back book.

That came back to bite me of course.

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Linux in 2013: 'Freakishly awesome' – and who needs a fork?

John F***ing Stepp

Re: And yet, and yet ...

@bazza

I should have been clearer on one thing, our business depends on Windows servers.

This is because of a very obscure glitch in post that is not handled by Apache*.

So, Windows.

But client side we don't really care what operating system or browser they use.

As a lot of our back and forth communications are done with pdf, and huge bloated exel spread sheets we are not really concerned with file size.

Except the final product.

*or windows without a dll hack.

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John F***ing Stepp
Happy

Re: And yet, and yet ...

Since various models of Microsoft Word are incompatible with one another I send documents in RTF.

RTF can be handled by Word, StarOffice, OpenOffice, LibraOffice, even WordPerfect (someone here still uses that) and WordStar (somewhere around here we have the 5.25 disks for that.)

Text files I reserve for readmes and other fluff.

Linux is nice and grown up now, much more stable than say Win8 (dealing with a customer problem on that today) but I recently migrated my laptop from Debian to FreeBSD just because it was harder to use and I am getting older and need the aggravation to keep my mind alive.

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NASA-backed fusion engine could cut Mars trip down to 30 days

John F***ing Stepp

Well, yes, go get an astroid. . .

And hollow it out, put enough engines on it and . . . super slow star trek.

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Windows XP support ends a year from … now!

John F***ing Stepp

Re: XP users should say 'thanks' to the penguins

I actually liked ME better than 98.

It only had two or three major memory leaks and after a while I pretty well knew which bit of software would have to be killed after use (oddly, the win help facility was one of them).

I still routinely fire up task manager first (I've got it running now on Win7) and miss it on LINUX or BSD (ps followed by kill -9 process# works as well).

A lot of us use Windows for a very good reason; Windows operating systems are where our customers live.

You know, money, root of all evil and that sort of thing. I am not at all sure that I would even have a computer if I didn't need it for work.

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We shall CRUSH you, puny ROBOT... with CHESS

John F***ing Stepp

Led any good rooks lately?

And now I will go hide.

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British armed forces get first new pistol since World War II

John F***ing Stepp

Having owned 9s and 44s

For personal defense neither is perfect.

The 9 (a S&W 59) was somewhat underpowered and would lead one to use up ammo for a positive takedown.

This is fine for the police but I, personally, do not want to injure or kill a bystander (the police have insurance and attorneys).

The 44 (a S&W 659) had only 6 shots but would stop a Mack truck; over penetration and inaccuracy were other downsides; again, bystanders.

I currently have a pair of 1911 single stacks; 18 shots overall and the caliber still has the number 4 in it.

After firing a 44 magnum, a 45 feels a bit like the old 22 caliber target pistol I had as a kid*.

Best choice for defense seems to be, not being in a place where crap happens and not pissing the crazies off (being thought of as one of said crazies helps a lot too).

*'Murica.

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Kill that Java plugin now! New 0-day exploit running wild online

John F***ing Stepp

Huh,

I just checked both computers and somehow I forgot to turn the plugin back on the last time they found a security hole.

(or maybe the time before last, I am pretty lazy about crap I never use nor miss.)

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Intel bets the farm on touch-enabled 'convertible and detachable' Ultrabooks

John F***ing Stepp

Re: Have you ever tried 'alternative' keyboards?

"If i cuold jst get ths fukcng keybrd to tlpe more thean tywo words correctly in a row then thst wold be a grte mp[rvoemnt"

Voice recognition to the rescue!

"MOTHER DUCKLING PIZZA CHIP!" said Tom Distinctly.

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Habitable HEAVY GRAVITY WORLD found just 42 light-years away

John F***ing Stepp

Re: another super-Earth planet orbiting a star just 42 light years away from home...

And the phone sanitizers; not really needed after this profligation of cell phones.

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Craig, Connery or ... Dalton? Vote now for the ultimate James Bond

John F***ing Stepp

Well, how about the forgotten bond?

Which would be Barry Nelson.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barry_Nelson

The first ever James (Jimmy) Bond and not even on the list.

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First, Google goggles - now the world gets self-censoring specs

John F***ing Stepp

Re: Put in your earplugs ...

Profit?

I have a set of readers exactly like that, I paid $1.00 (.64 pounds) for them.

The real money is to be made by selling salvation to fundies; too bad I still have ethics.

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Study: Users prefer Google+ over Facebook

John F***ing Stepp

Gahh!

That reminds me, I forgot to post on Google + last month.

(I saw a study that showed the average Gplus user posts about 3 minutes of content per month and have been working my ass off trying to beat that; and this, gentlemen and ladies, is why I like Google +.)

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Multi-platform exploit sniffs your OS, penetrates your back door

John F***ing Stepp
Trollface

So, Apple fanbois

Running a 6502 on an Apple IIe don't have a problem with this nonsense.

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Condom compartment hidden in iPhone case

John F***ing Stepp

Oh

I guess you could store a couple of SD cards (or would that then be STD cards?) instead.

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iPad app that lets mute kids speak menaced by patent lawsuit

John F***ing Stepp

"We are going to need a bigger shark. . ."

But Bountyquest seems to have died so finding and pointing out prior art(1) (as in smoky cave paintings from prehistory) is only an exercise for outraged people.

About three years from now this is going to be a non issue.

Microsoft has this really dandy device(2) that responds to gestures; they (unlike others) don't seem to have a problem with open source hacks. Rumor has it that the device will eventually be refined to the point where it will be able to read lips (hello HAL) and I can see where this will eventually lead to a nice predictive speech enabler (3)

Software patents are always fighting that end run, as just finding a permanent cure for some disease does really affect profit on any higher priced pharmaceutical that just treats the symptom.

There does, by the way, seem to be a lot of Open Source stuff out there that is doing about the same thing.

(1) Prior art, this was done for dogs once using a typewriter keyboard (no joke).

(2) Kinect

(3) Google "ducking pizza ship" for another opinion.

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The Facebook job test: Now interviewers want your logins

John F***ing Stepp
Meh

I could just tell them

That the IT guy strongly suggested that we not have Facebook accounts accessible at the office and when they tell me he sounds like a bit of a dick; say, yes, yes I am.

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HP finally decides the future of the PC: It's a printer accessory

John F***ing Stepp

Ouch

I have this image in my head of a PC that won't boot up unless the ink is fresh.

Smile for the chimera.

Then it rains, the image runs and I realize that no one could possibly be that stu. . .

Well, never mind.

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Eddie Murphy heading for worst movie ever glory

John F***ing Stepp

I use this one for a coaster

An American Carol.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1190617/

Has coffee stains; I will get my $5 worth out of it.

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Microsoft probes IE8 dll AWOL hell

John F***ing Stepp

Simply

go over to the LINUX box and tell Firefox to lie to the Micro-Soft site.

"I am IE, really I am."

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LibreOffice debugs and buffs up to v.3.5

John F***ing Stepp

Having used

Wordstar, Wordperfect, Word, Staroffice and Open office I must say it is a matter of absolute hate falling off to minor annoyances; I would guess that it is just what you can actually stand out of a word processor* that makes it your favorite.

I might as well try LibreOffice next.

*Wordstar and early Wordperfect; know those ctr cokebottle shift combos yet?

Word; kerning? who in the hell kerns a space?

Staroffice; No, dammit, that is the persons name you autocorrecting POS.

(I just haven't used Oo enough to find the pointy bits.)

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Demand for safety kitemark on software stepped up

John F***ing Stepp

It has been awhile

In re Software "kitemark"?

Back in the 90s, in the states, they wanted us to put in a little verifying marklet for all sold software.

This would have caused the company I worked for to go broke rather quickly had the proposed legislation passed and pretty well been the bane of all small software shops.

I still hold a grudge about this and have not bought a Disney, Sony product or damn near anything made or produced by the a**holes that thought this scheme up*.

If you are working for a small shop then they might be going after your job.

*This is pretty much why I don't care if the pirates take Disney et al to the cleaners; they don't care about me, I don't care about them.

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Murdoch slams White House over SOPA in Twitter row

John F***ing Stepp

I personally just think we should burn his damn sled.

(Probably keeps his soul in it.)

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Google's social search mash gets EPIC FAIL

John F***ing Stepp

Auggg, Google changes something. . . Fire bad!!!

Pitchforks and torches people, pitchforks and torches.

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Kodak heading to Chapter 11

John F***ing Stepp

But they do make the best printers.

Damn, I will have to start overpaying for ink again.

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PayPal dispute ends in 'violin destruction'

John F***ing Stepp

This is why I no longer sell nukes on ebay.

Right, hit it with a hammer.

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Siri bones up on Mandarin for iPhone 4S China launch

John F***ing Stepp

笑出声来

Google for the win. (and because I am just getting started learning this xie xie.)

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Software bug fingered as cause of Aussie A330 plunge

John F***ing Stepp

I was wondering about that. . .

R. A. Heinlein always had three computers navigating his space ships in his sf stories.

Maybe three is not enough; maybe we need another that will continually ask the others if they are feeling OK? are they depressed? what exactly are you doing with that packet from Skynet?

Probably get told "Well, Clippy, I am presently flying us into the side of a hill so you will shut up!"

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WD slashes warranty periods on Blue and Green drives

John F***ing Stepp

Ocean Gate.

Really good quality manufacturer bought out by (I forget, and don't want to be sued) piece of crap people that have had a slight tendency to break often.

I kind of saw that coming.

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Malicious apps infiltrate Google's Android Market

John F***ing Stepp

The attacks on the Android Market will continue. . .

Or until moral improves.

Which ever comes first.

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Jimbo Wales ponders Wikipedia blackout

John F***ing Stepp

Go.For.It!

What I always say.

Jump! Jump!

or

There is only one chance in six that the chamber is loaded; risk it.

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MIT boffin's 'truth goggles' probe print and pols

John F***ing Stepp

My gosh! The Anti-Beer Goggle has appeared!

The end is nigh upon us!

(trying to use up the worlds supply of ! )

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Survey: UK biz is using more encryption

John F***ing Stepp

OK, is there a market for a small latex protector for a USB device?

Because we seem to have created one.

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US general: 'We're cleared to cyber-bomb enemy hackers'

John F***ing Stepp

Gentlemen, we have just received authorization to put Skynet online.

Now which button do I push again?

It was bigger in the movie.

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Production electric motorcycle breaks 100 mile range

John F***ing Stepp

Playing "Born to be wild" on a boom box so as to be noticed.

Probably just get you run over by a cager.

(When I wanted to be noticed I just leaned the bike the wrong way; other drivers avoid you when they see you do that.)

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Details of all internet traffic should be logged – MEP

John F***ing Stepp
Happy

Pitchforks and torches.

And don't forget the spare batteries.

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Microsoft flags Firefox and Chrome for security failings

John F***ing Stepp

I don't visit this type site.

Too afraid I'll download malware.

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

John F***ing Stepp

Screen looks a bit as if. . .

I took five or six random colored (coloured) paintballs; loaded them into my wristrockett slingshot and fired them at an albino mime.

Not that there is anything wrong with that.

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Hackers break SSL encryption used by millions of sites

John F***ing Stepp

I will try to explain my objection.

Phorm.

Putting an ad into your webpage.

Now doing it if you are using ssl.

Now maybe over in the UK your ISP is too nice to do that but I live in the USA and these people are not as nice as BT et al.

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