* Posts by Daniel B.

3112 posts • joined 12 Oct 2007

Mi casa es su casa: Ubuntu bug makes 'guests' anything but

Daniel B.
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Re: More work

Actually, a properly configured Linux system has user directories permissions set as 640 by default.

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As of today, iThings are even harder for police to probe

Daniel B.
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About time

HFS+ is getting very old, it makes sense to roll out a newer file system.

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Daniel B.
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Re: Why not ZFS?

I'm not sure, but I think the Oracle takeover had something to do with it, as well as some licensing issues.

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Microsoft cloud TITSUP: Skype, Outlook, Xbox, OneDrive, Hotmail down

Daniel B.
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Trollface

Really fun

While I did suffer from having my Hotmail account go down, it's got an upside. This is going to be perfect trolling material against Xbox fanbois. So, paying for online means this shouldn't have happened, amirite?

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Microsoft to close its social network on a week's notice – and SIX people complain

Daniel B.
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Facepalm

They already had a better one

Anyone remember MSN Spaces? That one kinda worked, though it was more of a LiveJournal-style blogging platform. But the thing is: it worked. Integrating that with their then-popular MSN Messenger IM service did wonders to the whole thing. At some point, people were constantly posting stuff in there and your friends could see those updates; a surefire thing as everyone had MSN Messenger.

It started dying off as people migrated to hi5 and/or Facebook and the old blogs stagnated. Sometime around 2010, Microsoft migrated all the blogs into some Wordpress crap and shut down the original network. Then they killed MSN Messenger. They basically killed off their only successful social network-ish stuff to promote Skype; instead, everyone just jumped ship to Facebook. Great job, Ballmer!

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Daniel B.
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Re: It has gone the way of 'Comic Chat'

I do. It was an interesting take on IRC. In fact, I started using the IRC server directly, I had no idea about the Comic interface until someone mentioned it.

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Daniel B.
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FAIL

Re: Microsoft has a problem with word of mouth

they do a have minor product called Xbox, you may of heard rumours of.

Fortunately, they made an excellent job of shooting both feet with the stupid DRM fiasco that the Xbox One is pretty much dead in the water. Sure, they're trying to get their groove back with Project Scorpio, but all that talk about "premium" console, "premium" price is hinting at a sorely expensive device that nobody but Xbox fanbois will be interested in. At this point, even Nintendo has better odds at having a successful comeback than Microsoft.

MSFT has seen the writing in the wall, which is why they've turned all of their exclusives into "Windows10 and Xbox" games.

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Dark net webmail provider Sigaint still in the, er, dark

Daniel B.
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Black Helicopters

Compromised

I'm betting that some TLA got them. Hopefully, everyone using that service was also using crypto on their email, or they're going to find some friendly spooks knocking on their door real soon.

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I was authorized to trash my employer's network, sysadmin tells court

Daniel B.
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Best advice ever.

Don't treat your employees like shit

Something we can all agree on.

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Bring it BACK... with MODs! Psion 5 storms great tech revival poll

Daniel B.
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Boffin

The OS is obvious

Symbian, which succeeded EPOC.

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BOFH: Elf of Safety? Orc of Admin. Pleased to meet you

Daniel B.
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Re: Nice twist!

I would've lost. I was expecting a high voltage encounter with an Eastern European cattle prod...

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Intel Atom chips have been dying for at least 18 months – only now is truth coming to light

Daniel B.
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Boffin

If they're using an Atom..

... they deserve what they're getting. This is what the ARM chips are for.

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Xmas software update knackered US Customs computer systems

Daniel B.
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Re: Nope, your terminology is wrong

I can attest that most US airports have baggage claim in publicly accessible areas. It's weird for obvious reasons you've noticed, like any J Random dude being able to nick someone else's baggage with impunity.

The one place where this doesn't happen is when going through CBP. Thus your baggage is actually safer when you're arriving into the US than during domestic or connecting flights.

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Daniel B.
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Alert

Re: Welcome to Amerika

Some commenters probably didn't get the courier reference you're talking about. ;)

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Daniel B.
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Re: People are Goods

In the US, the part where people go through is also called Customs.

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MacBook killer? New Lenovo offering sexed up with XPoint booster

Daniel B.
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Boffin

It's the OS

The reason I'd (still) buy an MBP over a Lenovo are basically the OS. OSX is still better than Windows and supports most commercial software I usually need for work. I could just buy a regular laptop, wipe the HDD and install Linux but ... I would've already have paid Microsoft for a Windows 10 license, and there's no way in hell I'm doing that unless I really, really need to. Thus I'm paying for the MBP even though the Apple Tax is steeper than the MS Tax.

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Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: It's no good

Set up the boot pasword (so it can only boot from its SSD), install FileVault (now the problem has been patched) and force a decent login password and you have a device that is not worth stealing for acquiring secrets (as it's encrypted), nor for "resale" as you cannot reformat it to make it appear new, and as it's all glued and soldered in swapping the internal drive isn't an option either.

Actually, you can already achieve that with the non-Retina MBPs. Firmware password is there (locking boot choice), FileVault is there, and swapping the HDD will cause the firmware to ask for a password. The whole glue stuff is unnecessary.

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A year in infosec: Bears, botnets, breaches ... and elections

Daniel B.
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Alert

Hm...

Polls in the US were pretty much on the mark except for certain states that (gasp) ended up flipping the election. In fact, Nate Silver warned there was a good chance this would happen because there was little to no polling in those states as they were considered "solid blue". In fact, the "winning" percentage in all of these were dangerously close to the margin of error.

The polls themselves might have flipped the election as well. Everyone took for granted that the states showing up as blue would remain blue, thus the "Bernie or Bust" crowd felt they could go third party or simply stay home. Which is also what happened during Brexit.

Lesson learned in 2016: Your vote matters. Don't skip it.

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Daniel B.
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Re: What's so wrong about a private email server?

You're actually right and wrong at the same time.

The Trump Trolls are right in the whole thing concerning sensitive stuff being sent to/from a private server... even though they're overlooking that the classified stuff was reclassified into the sensitive class after the fact. But...

Hillary had to fire up a private server for her campaign promotion stuff due to the Hatch Act (the one that you may remember was recently aimed at Comey). It forbids use of government resources for political campaigns. Thus *not* using a private server for that stuff would've actually had Hillary breaching the Hatch Act.

Of course, this all may have been avoided if she had simply not done that crap until she stopped working for the Obama Administration.

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Ruh-roh! Rick Ruhl rolled out of Ham Radio Deluxe in software kill-switch aftermath

Daniel B.
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Joke

Oops!

Well, it seems like he

(•_•)

( •_•)>⌐■-■

(⌐■_■)

Hammed it up.

YEEEEEEEEEEAAAAHHH!!!!

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Android tops 2016 vuln list, with 523 bugs

Daniel B.
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Interesting overlooked detail

Java isn't in the Top 50 this time around. Maybe Oracle has finally fixed it?

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This 'cloud storage' thing is going to get seriously big in 2017

Daniel B.
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FAIL

Re: Stick with RAID and LTO instead.

Any business? What about, say, a big online retailer? There's one beginning with A that might disagree. Or that large search engine beginning with G.

You'll find that those companies won't disagree, because they're in fact the ones propping up all that 'cloud infrastructure' in the first place. Which means they're actually using it.

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Christmas Eve ERP migration derailed by silly spreadsheet sort

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: consumer-focused digital candy bar phones

Sorry to disappoint you, but 'candy bar phone' is usually used to mean something like an old school nokia in order to differentiate them from the flip phones which came before.

Indeed, but it still applies. It's just that in the transition to smartphones, and due to the iPhone design taking over everything else, every single smartphone is now in candybar form.

And I hate this. I miss the clamshell form factor, as it was far more pocketable. The last manufacturer to keep some form of this was BlackBerry, and they decided to give up this year.

I've seen the future, and it's full of boring, featureless slabs with no physical keyboards.

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Spotty battery life costs Apple's MacBook Pro its gold-star rating

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Safari

Yeah, I've noticed that Safari is a serious resource hog.

I'm not surprised.

Thanks to HTML5 and JavaScript code monkeys doing tons of crap using JS, all browsers are now resource hogs.

Seriously. There's a certain site that will cause some laptops and most smartphones to overheat just by leaving it open.

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Daniel B.
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Re: Not feeling the love

I'm not impressed with the latest offerings. Even the previous offerings were just retooled copies of the previous line.

I actually wish they had made the new MacBook Pro releases just retoolings of the previous line. Instead, they somehow made them worse than the "Retina" retool, as now it's not just that your MBP is non-user-upgradeable, it now lacks any useful port as well!!

Same with the iPhone7, where the major change was to remove one of the most useful ports ever.

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Don't pay up to decrypt – cure found for CryptXXX ransomware, again

Daniel B.
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Re: I'll leave this here...

The one thing I haven't seen yet is a way to do something like rdiff-backup where the backup device will only receive new data, with no ability to rewrite existing data from the sending entity.

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Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: It's fun, because they never learn

The thing is that for many people, "backup" does indeed mean what we call "copies".

One of the truly killer features of OSX is that Apple baked in a proper backup solution in the form of Time Machine. You get weeks, if not months of prior backups you can restore from which will actually save you from these kind of catastrophes.

I've seen similar stuff on other OSes through third-party tools, but the third-party-ness of them means most won't bother with it. Until they get hit by ransomware and by then, it's too late.

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The Life and Times of Lester Haines

Daniel B.
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Go

The Man who put Playmobil in Space

I wish he had been able to get LOHAN flying as well. His articles and projects will be sorely missed.

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SHIFT + F10, Linux gets you Windows 10's cleartext BitLocker key

Daniel B.
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Re: What's wrong with that, Microsoft...?

Rinse and repeat 10K times. Err, no thanks.

You mean it can't be done through GPO?

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Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Whole-disk encryption is silly anyway

That's not just the case with Windows, but also with OSX, sorry, macOS FileVault, and there is no warning to end users that this is the case (or an option to disable sleep in favour of shutdown, which swaps a risk of disclosure with one for lost work because you were away from your system too long - you can't really win).

You haven't googled it, then.

pmset -a hibernatemode 25

pmset -a destroyfvkeyonstandby 1

Which indeed changes the "sleep" to "hibernate" and destroys the FV key from memory. Thus the RAM won't have it, and the swap file with the RAM state won't have it either. Sure, you need to enter your password on "wake up" but it's worth the extra security.

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Daniel B.
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FAIL

All those MS apologists are hiding

This is almost like the Linux boot vulnerability ... except this one can actually expose the master keys and thus open up your entire "encrypted" filesystem. Way to go, MS!

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Custom silicon, 9PB storage boxes, and 25Gb Ethernet – just another day in AWS hardware

Daniel B.
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Boffin

It's showing

They've reduced pricing for S3 storage. So they are getting more bang for buck with these things!

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The encryption conundrum: Should tech compromise or double down?

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Is it me?

It almost seems the pro-encryption community sees the same slippery slope as the pro-firearms community. The pro-gun guys say the difference between an AR-15 and a Remington 740 with wood stocks is nil. The pro-crypt guys say the difference between encryption without a back door and true encryption is nil.

It's a proven fact. Encryption depends on the secret key remaining secret. Once you have a "second secret" that can be used to decrypt any given message, people (good AND bad) will instead focus on acquiring said secret. It will be leaked, and then all crypto will be rendered useless.

It's hilarious because you were close with the pro-firearms analogy, but you got the analogy itself wrong. The correct one would be "outlaw secure crypto, and only outlaws will have it". And it's 100% correct.

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Why I just bought a MacBook Air instead of the new Pro

Daniel B.
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Facepalm

Well, shit.

Just when I was thinking that it was probably time to upgrade into a rMBP, they somehow made it crappier. Not only is the laptop non-upgradeable, now it also sucks with the removal of MagSafe and requiring dongles for pretty much everything.

Looks like I'll have to upgrade to the older model, if they're still selling it by the time I save enough to buy one. Otherwise, it seems I'll just have to do with my current 2012 13" MBP until it dies, and then see if there's something actually decent. But judging by Apple's direction, it seems I'll have to jump back to the icky Mickeysoft waters I evacuated when Windows 8 shat on that pool.

Apple, cut the crap. It's not funny anymore.

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AI can now tell if you're a criminal or not

Daniel B.
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Joke

This can't go wrong

Definitely won't go wrong ... definitely won't be fed the entire population of US Prisons and conclude that "black" means "criminal".

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IPv4 is OVER. Really. So quit relying on it in new protocols, sheesh

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Yes please

Now, if ISPs can get off their asses and start providing IPv6 addresses, it would be very nice! 18 years and counting ... the protocol is old enough to vote and drink in most countries by now!!!

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Teen in the dock on terror apologist charge for naming Wi-Fi network 'Daesh 21'

Daniel B.
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Re: Next time...

You mean The Knights Who Say Ni?

The BOFHen who say LART!

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Twitter trolls are destroying democracy, warn eggheads

Daniel B.
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Trollface

Re: old and sad

Trolls now are still doing the same as they did in the early days. They're firing up people by bringing out stupid arguments so that other users explode in trying to prove them wrong. They do it for the lulz.

The problem isn't the trolls, it's that many suckers have actually taken the troll arguments as truth. I'm pretty sure that most of what is now called the alt-right was born as a troll operation, but Poe's Law set in and now they've sucked in people who really believe all that crap.

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Let's praise Surface, not bury it

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: The PC is not dying

Well said. What has really happened is that PCs aren't being upgraded as much as they used to; my 8 year old desktop PC is still good for most home-related things, and my 4 year old laptop is still good enough for even heavy work. Playing resource-intensive games is the only thing I can't do, but that is less of an issue for me.

I'm pretty sure this is the same case for most people.

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FBI reopens Hillary spillery

Daniel B.
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FAIL

Way to go Comey!

So, the guy isn't only trying to screw over crypto with mandated backdoors, he's also trying to screw over the US Elections as well?

He needs to get sacked!

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Every LTE call, text, can be intercepted, blacked out, hacker finds

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Clarification on LTE call/SMS interception (not!)

One of the features I really liked from the BlackBerry OS was that it had the ability to choose 2G/3G, 2G only or 3G only. Both Android and iOS lack this ability ... you either choose to limit yourself to 2G, 2G/3G or 2G/3G/4G. There's no way to disable the older protocols and thus are susceptible to these kind of attacks.

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Lad cuffed after iOS call exploit knocks out Arizona 911 center

Daniel B.
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Facepalm

Re: AZ sheriff

His continued existence in office with the support of so many hispanics belies all their hate-filled rhetoric about how completely racist white people are for not accepting unrestricted immigration. They've been trying make an example out of him for many years, and have failed miserably.

Arpaio is going to lose this time around. He's also proven his detractors right by arresting actual U.S. citizens because they "look Mexican". Or sending people to jail for not using a turn signal. Do you want to know more?

He's going down, finally.

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Google: We look forward to running non-Intel processors in our cloud

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Yes

The CPU market needs a shaking. Going AMD still means x86, while jumping to POWER or ARM actually means true innovation in that field.

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AMD is a rounding error on Intel's spreadsheet and that sucks for us all

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Bad products is AMD fault only

The only thing that makes the next-gen a "fake next-gen" is the use of crappy x86 processors instead of keeping PPC and improving on that line. Instead of getting true next-gen consoles, we ended up with PCs masquerading as "next-gen" consoles. But we would've had this with Intel chips as well. So you're right, just not for the reasons you think you are.

As for AMD processors, I had a quite decent run with them. The last crappy AMD I had was the infamous K6-2 which was indeed crappy. My 9 year old Athlon64 PC is still going strong, even though it's been mostly relegated to a storage server these days.

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Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: I think we have to look on the bright side here

Oh, I hope this actually happens. It's about time the x86 architecture is put out to pasture, as it should've been done back in the late 90s. Intel cheated its way to the top during the CPU wars.

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US reactor breaks fusion record – then runs out of cash and shuts down

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Sad thing

... that the US seems to lack the money to keep these projects working. Reminds me of the Superconducting SuperCollider, which was to be 3 times larger than the LHC ... but was never even finished.

Because the US Government prefers to blow money on blowing other people up.

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Will Microsoft's nerd goggles soar like an Eagle, or flop like a turkey?

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Wrong Call

Microsoft didn't call the smartwatch trend dead ... it only call its useless MS-infested crap deader than Windows Phone. It's more of a matter that Microsoft-branded anything will usually go unloved, ignored, and eventually dead unless it's Windows or Xbox (and the latter is also stagnating as of this generation).

While wearables might not be that loved right now, it doesn't mean there's no use for them. 25 years ago, we were using CASIO Data Bank watches. Remember those? They worked as a calculator and had the ability to store 50 or 100 phone records. Those needs haven't really gone away; we might carry phones everywhere right now, but many times, we just don't want to whip out the whole phone to check the time, weather or check something real quick. A wearable allows you to do that. It's just that the devices are still too expensive to buy on their own; the same was true for smartphones merely 15 years ago. Prices will come down, and wearables will gain traction. Just not the MS branded ones. :)

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Daniel B.
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Go

Re: Fact Check?

Indeed, Acorn gave birth to ARM. But Apple's Newton made ARM get spinned off into a separate entity from Acorn, which ensured it would outlive Acorn Computers itself.

I like to see ARM as the ghost of Acorn, rising up from the grave, taking over the mobile world and exacting revenge on Intel. :)

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Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Looked Inevitable?

I think the problem was that Apple looked at the price of workstation 68k OS and tools and priced below them, not realising that x86 would become the new workstation. The 68020/030 looked superior to Intel's offerings of the period; they had no idea just how hard Intel would fight - until Apple, after a foray into PPC, became an x86 vendor too.

It wasn't that obvious back then. Remember that back in the 80s, most Personal Computers (when PC didn't mean IBM PC compatible) were based on the Apple II. The most popular platform was the C-64, or the Sinclair in the UK. It wasn't until the early 90s that the IBM PC started taking over the whole desktop PC market. Had Apple priced their Macintosh computers at more competitive price points, they might've won that war.

Also, for some time during the 90s, the universal platform that was expected to become the dominant one was the PowerPC one. Intel was the ugly duckling that happened to win because MS-DOS and Windows were cheaper, and craptel x86 was also cheaper than the competition.

Basically, the crappiest OS+Hardware combo won, all the better ones died off. Some of that hardware still lives, like PPC, MIPS and ARM; others are long dead (Alpha, PA-RISC).

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VMS will be ready to run on x86 in 2019!

Daniel B.
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Boffin

Re: Not quite

So basically, x86 is garbage compared to processors that have been 20 years out of production.

Why are we stuck with this crappy architecture in the first place?

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