1753 posts • joined 14 Sep 2007
There are so many different companies involved in getting data from A to B, and weekends have sucked generally for a long time, with different people blaming somebody else for every problem.
And then you have to deal with the helplines. Some are much better than others.
There is probably a college course in Bangalore on not listening to customers.
I know how to use traceroute, and I know exactly who is carrying my data between A and B. Company B doesn't want to say just where their server is, but they put the info in the server domain name.
At the end of the day, I am still the paying customer, but that doesn't seem to make a difference. At the end of the day, my name is on a contract, but nobody cares.
My email probably arrives at GCHQ rather sooner that it arrives at the addressee's account.
Re: Stop with the mobile requirement already
Yeah, if they start depending on mobile phones, there;s a chunk of rural England (never mind the more remote parts of Scotland and Wales) which is locked out of buying over the Internet. Maybe depends on having a smartphone too,
Re: "the models predicted"
The phrasing certainly seemed to come out of bad Hollywood disaster movies. A lot of energy, yes, but saying the atmosphere will explode leaves me expecting the imminent arrival of a time-travelling extra-terrestrial and a London schoolteacher.
Hachette may be a French company, but it owns some major British and American publishers. It looks like the Hachette UK website is down for some sort of maintenance, so it's not easy to check just which imprints they own, but I found a reference to Hodder & Stoughton, and to Time Warner.
I think the key point in all this is that the TLD has no value if it isn't operating. Which means that the claimants would somehow have to keep it operating, and keep collecting fees. and pay the bills.
You can read this as a "Don't be silly." Where really is the money in grabbing control? And these people are claiming to be after money.
Anyone remember the BBC Micro?
There was a time when computers were something the kids were taught about, but the teaching seemed to shift away from computers to using standard office software. That's still useful, but even ten years ago school leavers were taking "computer driving licence" courses because the schools seemed to have failed them.
And today's parents are a part of that generation, which seems to have been sacrificed at the altar of Microsoft.
Frankly, while there's some weird stuff out there on the internet, and there are some nasty people, currently declaring that they are only arguing about ethics in game journalism, I also don't see any involvement of the internet in such dramatic and frightening cases as the child sex abuse in Rotherham.
My own feeling is that a lot of the scare stories, the political fantasies of predators on the internet, might be better dealt with as part of teaching sex and relationships. Things such as good passwords, and avoiding click-bait, are as significant as condoms. It's a different sort of relationship, but the internet is not different from Eastenders: people are telling the unusual and dramatic stories.
And we probably have our own myths.
Re: You (should) get what you pay for
Back when I started with this broadband malarkey, about a decade ago, one of the things the ISPs told you was the "contention ratio". When there were few video services, it worked out pretty well. Even with a fairly slow collection, you could download a Linux distro overnight.
Times have changed. Connections can be a lot faster, on the same BT line, and they need to be. The ISPs never seem to mention the contention ratio, but with everyone wanting their video streams at the same time, the ISPs need to be able to move far more data. And the change was quite fast. Stuff that was working in 2012 was struggling in 2013.
I changed ISP. On the same telephone wires I got double the capacity. And we will eventually get fibre here, although on a rather vague timetable. I may pay extra for that, just to be sure of having enough bandwidth, because nobody talks about the contention.
Re: Talk Talk is pretty much the only company
I was a TalkTalk customer for many years. I didn't use one of their ADSL boxes, and I cannot say I had wi-fi problems. Their support is crap, their advertising routinely claims the impossible (There are limits on the output power of all wifi gear), and, when I left them, their connection between the BT exchange and the rest of their network was so overloaded at peak times that my broadband connection was little better than dial-up.
I actually doubled the speed of my connection over the physical wiring which BT provides.
We should be getting FTTC soon here, maybe by March 2015. The TalkTalk fibre offer is incredible, and expires next week. BT Openreach vans are still in breeding mode, laying cables. Mobile data, yesterday as I travelled to a hospital appointment, was going down like a Messerschmidt over Kent.
I have given up on trusting broadband adverts.
Re: Up Goer Word Rock
Poul Anderson did it better
Soothly we live in mighty years!
Re: The laptop and desktop are dead.
I am not convinced that hardcore gaming has a future in the PC world. Or it's maybe just that we should start thinking of a Playstation or an XBox as being as much a PC as is an Apple Mac: all are essentially desktop box tools.
Feeding the Internet of Things
One of the big problems with talk of an internet of things is that mobile date coverage is still erratic in my parts of the country. I don;t know which network can provide the connection for a smart meter in this part of the world, and it can depend on which side of the house the meter is placed.
Even in rural towns, I see signs that mobile data coverage can be affected by the performance of the mobile hardware.
If this is about selling the GSMA answer, the networks are going to have to get their act together on coverage.
Re: "We apologise for ANY inconvenience caused."
It's the same for the people working on telephone helplines. I have had a not-fun weekend dealing with that, and whether it's a telephone or live chat, I have sometimes wondered if they even bother with the question the customer asks. They are as bad as politicians. Has anyone on Question Time ever managed to answer the question asked or admitted they don't know?
Re: El Reg hacks need to actually *look* at the modern fleabay
Today a phablet arrived here from a pro retailer, sold through eBay, and delivered from Amazon.
This is getting confusing. The ways ordinary folk can sell stuff are getting fewer and fewer. I know of five regular auctions locally which have stopped happening. The second-hand bookshops are vanishing too.
Some of the charity shops will take "good" stuff. But what makes something "good" is a rather high standard. If they don't want you, disposal costs money.
How much does an electrical safety certificate cost for an old washing machine? Or that computer?
We're still in a depression, and we don't seem to be allowed to sell anything. It's for our own good, right?
FTC tells 'scan to email' patent troll: Every breath you take, every lie you make, I'll be fining you
Re: The old American badger game goes on.
You get some of the same carry-ons with CGI models, though the recent cases I have heard of have involved trademarks rather than copyright. One of the quirks of US law is that government documents are not copyrightable (I maybe over-simplify) and so are in the public domain. This doesn't stop tradenark law, and the current MARPAT camouflage includes the trademarked USMC emblem in the pattern.
A note on Geography
It should be obvious enough from a map, but New Waltham is effectively a suburb of Grimsby and Cleethorpes.
I don't know that this makes Tor unreliable, but since the original intent was to provide a data channel for spies, this does rather suggest there is something new being used by the spies.
Re: Wrong platform?
I don't think the Lockheed project is going to be small enough for a tank.
But Mach 7 is about twice the muzzle velocity of the M242 25mm cannot on the Bradley. The big question is what sort of power it will need.
There were a lot of kit-cars with the general Lotus 7 look, and of varying quality. Haynes even sold a book on making your own. But the mechanical style of cars has changed. There's not so many cars now with rear-wheel drive to use as donor vehicles. Though Wikipedia provides an impressive list.
I am not sure that a Caterham is quite like the Raspberry Pi. It's maybe a bit more like the FUZE. But they are certainly in the same territory.
There'll never be another...
She has huge experience, and if somebody wanted an election for a democratic President, I would vote for her. Though I would feel guilty about lumbering an old lady with the job.
Sometimes, I don't think we realise how lucky we are, and the monarchies of northern Europe seem to work out pretty well. Britain is part of a group of political solutions that work out pretty well in the modern world. And the next couple of generations look pretty solid. It's the politicians we need to worry about. Some of them deserve the turbulent priest treatment, though it's probably a good thing that those days are over.
There's also only one Royal Air Force.
Some people have strange ideas...
One concept that comes up in studies of human ancestry is exogamy, and it's at the root of all sorts of stories about travelling salesmen and such. There's a tendency to see strangers as sexually desirable. And that feeds into a lot of rather ugly male thinking about protecting women and what men are "entitled" to do.
There are also assumptions that women are somehow asexual, and shocked discoveries that they aren't.
And the lack of mitochondrial DNA only proves that it hasn't been found yet, and suggests that maybe somebody didn't have any daughters live to breeding age.
We don't know enough. We can make guesses based on different human cultures, not just groups such as the Bushmen of the Kalahari—would their society be unchanged if we moved them to prehistoric Europe—but much of this can only be a guess. What would some far-future archaeologist make of a modern sex toy. "It's a ritual object"?
Well, if you want a suggestive analogy, there are one or two stories amongst Star Trek fans concerning well-muscled young men costumed as Next Generation Klingons. And how the way green body-paint can rub off reveals certain late-night activities. There are even very bawdy songs.
That's modern humans for you, and maybe modern contraception, but be careful about gender assumptions in who shags whom.
Re: This proves one important thing...
I can imagine somebody saying, "I think I need new spectacles," which is a bit different. But Microsoft does seem to have been a bit of a foot-dragger on fonts and layouts as displays got bigger with more pixels. The timing feels about right, but why did Ballmer think he needed to go public?
As a counter-example, consider the interactions between Google Drive, Linux, and, er, Android
There might, I suppose, be OS-level features which need to be "right" for a particular cloud service.
I don't think there is an alternative to the ITU, perhaps with the UN and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights involved in the transition.
Incidentally, while there are many good legal reasons for Corporations to be treated as individuals, I reckon they should be treated as children, not adults. For ICANN, that re-casts the question as "Who are the parents?" If ICANN, or its successor, does something stupid, who can send it to bed with no supper? And what's the point of self-punishing children?
"Better drowned than duffers. If not duffers won't drown,"
Drone operators might be under less stress than somebody flying a fast jet pver a battlefield, and that could pay off in effectiveness. They're not affected by high-g manouvers, vibration, or noise. And you have the chance to watch over them, have an experienced supervisor keep an eye on things amd take a wider look, much as in the Battle of Britain some people could fight the battle while the pilots could focus on the local details. But some of that is a leadership problem, and some of the bad aspects can be seen as the intrusion of managers. It's still a battle.
And that is where the lady has her experience.
The more assassination-like missions are a whole different set of problems, starting with just who decides on a target. It's not likely to be a forward air controller marking your target with a laser.
Crimestoppers is the worry
Crimestoppers, to me, suggests anonymous tip-offs.
It's a long time ago now, but I had a couple of experiences with a particular shotgun user that scared me. Not big time, but I wondered. You grow up, in the countryside, expecting certain standards, and seeing a bunch of guys out shooting on a foggy day... Can they see far enough to be safe? But you have to live in the same village. An anonymous tip-off would have been a temptation, but I am not sure how anonymous it would have turned out to be.
Not every legal shotgun or firearms owner is flawless, even if they never start shooting people. And neither are the Police. And then the politicians stick their oar in.
I don't know what I would have done if this Crimestoppers option had been available.
The Personal Factor
Whatever the vehicle, the style of driving can make a bigger difference than these mods. And that's something we can all do.
There's some things that seem a little counter-intuitive at first sight, such as final-drive ratios. But on some vehicles, such as a Land Rover, I'd wonder just what the ratio was optimised for. And any effect might be overwhelmed by the drag. But, on a pre-Defender type, replacing the 2.25 petrol by a later turbo-diesel made a pretty huge difference. Most of that is improved engine tech. On the other hand, that old 2.25 engine was very much a DIY engine. And there were a few problems that were fixable, if you watched for them, such as the carburettor gasket.
Re: More than the core
The nuclear submarine size suggests the USN will be putting some money in already, which is very Skunk-Works. And they do seem to be better than most at running fission reactors. But, while I wouldn't quite call it a stock-market scam, that's a very plausible angle too.
It might be real. There might be a limit on how much LM is willing to bet. It's something longer-term than the markets are comfortable with. But if you bought LM stock last week, you might have a nice profit next week.
This could be big. But is it a big invention, or just big compared to Enron?
Not just London?
Out here in Rural England, about a mile from the motorway, the coverage is pretty crap. And even the network coverage maps that the networks provide show horrible gaps in coverage along the main roads, even for voice phones.
The voice coverage does tend to be a little bit better than predicted, but I still suspect the maps are rather old, and take no account of the reality that trees grow.
I don't feel any great sympathy for you London guys, but we could all benefit from more honest phone companies.
Cats have some strange people.
Fascinating program, but I rather fancied that the cats would be happier if the humans were a little less urbanised. If you're a farmer, with livestock experience, you tend to notice things a little more. The cat isn't such a mystery. They're not like dogs, but the social cues are there.
This ain't rocket science
Sunday evening, I was watching Guy Martin struggling to put a wing on a Spitfire, because he'd held the bolt in his hot little hands for too long.
Liquid Helium is about a degree warmer than the cosmic background, which is still a tad frigid. I don't see any obvious reason why they're using it, but I don't design rockets. The fuel is reported as UDMH and N2O4 which is an old and well-understood combination.
What were the designers thinking?
It is all too apparent to me that Help-desk staff are semi-literate in English, and have too-frequently failed the "English as she is spoke" course at the Bangalore Technical College (Est 2013), on whose long experience they depend.
The standard fixes always involve an easily remedied fault with some other piece of software than that they are supporting, and require you to start some slow-running process that never seems to be resolved before a shift-change.
They will then tell you that they have detected a problem with your Windows installation, even when you are running Linux. Should they want to know your computer's IP address you may safely tell them "127.0.0.1" whereupon hijinks have been known to ensue.
Re: @ scatter
I have two LED lights as hall lights, and what makes the difference is that they have a motion sensor, so there's no groping for the light switch. They also take account of ambient light level. The usual pattern for electronics is a long life, with an initial risk of early failure.
I was already on fluorescents, and colour rendition isn't critical. But this sort of control seems to be quite new, and for a pretty obvious reason. Once you have the voltage for the LEDs, you have to power for the control electronics. The extra expense turns out to be quite small, compared to an ordinary LED. And the end result knocks down the time-domain element of total power consumption.
Re: block anything made by Apple
It's the sort of thing that makes me wonder just what they really know.
Is the Apple enviroment flawed, or is it that they don't understand it?
On this, I would want to know what they really said, and not have to worry what some reporter might have turned it into
Re: I like that sound placement tech
Stereo was never much good, though a binaural recording played back through headphones was better, if you had hearing loss. But we've had digital surround sound for a long time now, and that can pay off big. My late father had bad hearing problems, but just getting background noises coming from a different direction than the speech, and not the volume faking of most ordinary stereo, made a big difference for him.
But how do you fake it through headphones? And can people who can hear the results properly ever be able to afford the hardware?
Re: So why bother to send a letter of request to a foreign country...
Also there is the "legal attache" in the local US Embassy, usually an FBI Agent, with the job of handling cooperation, both ways, with the law enforcement systems of a foreign country. There are probably precedents over international financial crimes, and a warrant from a US court could be part of the process, evidence that a lawful investigation is taking place.
Where does this money come from? Where does it go to? If the piracy means that it doesn't go to a record company, where is it?
Re: the right to be forgotten has to stay as an exception.
Being forgotten implies that you have to be remembered first, and the potential for abuse—people using the right to hide evidence of wrong-doing—is an argument for some sort of balancing check. We know that laws such as the American DMCA, and particularly its notice system, are routinely abused and misapplied.
A lot of the controversy, around the world, comes from things being done without any limit. Doing something as an exception to the norm implies there are limits. Then all you have to do is make sure they are applied. Search warrants, anyone?
I see the same pattern for just about everything. "Have you rebooted" seems to be a standard helpdesk answer, possibly taught by a training college in Bangalore. It's not totally ridiculous a suggestion. And if you had the time to go to another town, you had the time to try a reboot.
But they still sound like they are not listening.
My latest little carry-on, I'm not sure anyone trying to answer has actually read my message, but it looks as though a special debug version of the server code gives vague and useless error messages and doesn't notice that the server-unit is overloading. But that's a totally unrelated business.
Re: Think of the Pig Filth as 'Chuck Yeager'
And Brutus is an honourable man.
The liars want us to trust them.
It's impossible for them to find anything in that mega-haystack, but it's why, for instance, they were collecting Angela Merkel's conversations. They had the access they needed, and they can spend billions on storing the data. Who cares whose side she is on?
They do use other info to find suspects. They do traffic analysis to find contacts of known criminals. That would be enough "reasonable cause" to satisfy the lawyers, but they don't bother with staying legal. All the encryption in the world wouldn't protect you from that—it depends on the information the system needs to deliver and bill the calls.
And then, when they tell the FBI and the DEA and your local Country Sheriff, the legal cops run an investigation whose only purpose is to provide a paper trail that will stand up in court. It's called "Parallel Construction". It's not an investigation, they're writing a CSI episode to present to the judge and jury.
It isn't all that new. The FBI was pulling the same trick with illegal wire taps in 1935.
US Law Enforcement is a system built on Perjury.
And, as the Moazzam Begg case has revealed, institutionalised perjury is becoming more obvious here.
Re: Defending against the government in the US
Another element of the "rural working class" is that an adequate rifle is a tool that can help feed the family. Hunting isn't just sport. I have heard a few myths around that, but you have some of the same thinking in England, around shotguns mostly, and my late father certainly had to do such stuff, even trying to line up for multiple rabbits with one shot from a 12-bore in the 1930s.
There's an ultra-short story called Nary Spell by Manly Wade Wellman that involves that sort of shooting.
Movie Executive marries Barrister
OK, so he acts, and pretty well, but look up George Clooney's career. He's a lot more than a pretty face.
You have a movie producer/director who can organise a complex situation, and you have a barrister who can keep a secret. This isn't just the celebrity business: they're advertising their business competence.
Good look to them.
Re: ability to tell the difference depends on 3 things
My experience is with "home cinema" situations. Most of the cheap rigs you can buy for that have small speakers for the directional channels—the surround sound—and a subwoofer. But you can hear when all the bass is coming from the front, rather than from the same direction as the high-frequency element.
My father's hearing was pretty bad, but having background noises coming from different directions than the character speech made a big difference. Even just putting the normal TV sound through a Dolby Analogue Surround decoder can help (It makes me wonder what some of the "bad" TV sound really is.)
Anyway, most stereo recordings position sound sources merely by relative volume. They don't bother with phase. It's a trick. You don't hear anything now of binaural stereo, which did try to capture the phase differences. The modern digital surround sound does stand a chance of using that data, but speaker design tends to ignore frequency-related phase shifts.
Your show-off hi-fi audiophile with the big speakers isn't exactly wasting money, not until he gets into exotic speaker cables, but he may be missing out on a lot by sticking with such an ancient sound recording standard. Stereo sound is still faking it. So might a 5:1 recording, but it doesn't have to throw away so much data
MP3 is a pretty smart piece of sound engineering, dropping sounds that most of us can't perceive, but it would be foolish to think there can't be better.
If I had something on a lossless file on my desktop machine, and something came along that would measure my hearing and compress in a way that took my personal limits into account, the result might be better for my ears, and compress better than MP3.
Fanciful? Well, the big problem is the measurement of the response of my ears, but they only get up to about 12kHz these days, and compression suited to J. Random Teenager could include a lot I cannot hear, so maybe a personal compression standard would work.
But if there's something like that, we're going to need a lossless source for the compression.
It sounds like a fair situation for a trial. Good safety, a demanding environment, and replacable payloads.
Guys, I depend on regular medication deliveries. I put my repeat orders in with time enough to fix things if something goes wrong. If I were a resident of Juist, I would know how much allowance to make for tide and weather.
This doesn't change anything, and if something went wrong with the flight it would hardly be a problem to replace a consignment. Though I have a suspicion that the my local Doctors/Pharmacy rely a little too much on a just-in-time supply chain. This is the pseudo-privatised NHS here, and they will do things differently in Germany.
Anyway, for those who didn't know, the DHL brand is the German Post Office. They're not some dodgy parcels company, or a subsidiary of Amazon, or whatever. They'll know where this might be useful. And, like the rocket mail between the wars, I bet the collectors will have some specially postmarked stuff to drool over.
It looks as though there were multiple layers of Hoax here. Does Rantic really exist? Apparently not. And how do you prove any name on the internet is real?
Oh, it's on one of those business-name websites, is it? Most of those sites don't check the data they show you, and don't update, and only care about the fees from ever more dodgy advertisers. Where I am able to check, most of the businesses are a couple of years dead.
If it exists on the Internet, there is porn of it. That's something I get told often enough. It's as easy to believe that if it exists on the Internet it is a lie intended to sell advertising.
(Incidentally, I don't feel any urge to view naked selfies of Emma Watson. I know she isn't Hermione Granger, but I feel as though I have watched her grow up. And if 4chan were taking on Hermione. I would pay for tickets. It'd be better than Quidditch.)
Re: Nvidea, did you also manage to explain
They used film in those days, didn't they?
Re: On being slowly boiled alive with video standards
Streaming is the way forward, of course.
With streaming, you're stuck waiting for your ISP to catch up. Some do. Some, often advertising their own streaming service, do not.
At least you have noticed the problems of large screens in the living room.
The commonplace domestic TV now is, by the standards of the CRT era, a huge.screen. But how does it compare to the screen sizes the professionals use? How big a screen do the 4K enthusiasts use?
Where did they come from?
So there is now some official way of making computer security announcements.
It'a odd how I never seem to have heard of them before. It's the sort of thing you'd expect to get mentioned by an ISP. Maybe I did miss it. Was the notice pinned to the notice board in the cellar, behind the door marked "Beware of the Egress!"
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