* Posts by Flocke Kroes

2601 posts • joined 19 Oct 2007

SanDisk makes sub-SSDs for sub-laptops

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Cheap PC, CheapyC, Qi PC

There is some crap about trying to call them ultra-portable, and so charge a premium for compactness. For me, the advantage is the low cost, (I would prefer one with a decent size keyboard and screen) so pick a word that makes it clear that the advantage is the lack of cost.

For those of you who cannot read pinyin, qi is pronounced like the start of cheap, but while smiling. Which by some co-incidence matches the name of a company designing low cost daylight readable LCD screens (pixelqi).

Daily Mail cites video game as proof of terrorist doomsday plot

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

UK government has a law in place to deal with this...

Quick: detain, question and deport Daily Mail staff for distributing terrorist publications.

Irregular heart rhythm? Try a Taser

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

50000V means very little

If a taser really put 50000V across people, they would die. A taser might have an open circuit voltage of 50000V, but that voltage almost certainly falls under load. What really matters is the current. The threshold of perception is about 100uA. 5mA is often safe. Prolonged exposure to 18mA across the chest results in suffocation in adult males. It is believed that a lower current will kill women and children, but as far as I know, tests of this conjecture have not been published. 60mA at 60Hz can cause ventricular fibrillation in adult males (this has been tested on children: 30mA is sufficient for them). Most adults will experience ventricular fibrillation with a current of 100mA applied between the hands. People are about ten times less sensitive to DC currents and frequencies above 1000Hz.

At a wild guess, tasers output short bursts of DC current. I hope they are current limited rather than set to a specific voltage.

A blanket statement like "Tasers are safe" just causes suspicion, and a bit of nervousness that policemen will not be told what type of situations make tasers a bad risk. I think one policeman with a taser is a cheaper way to immobilise a violent suspect than half a dozen unarmed policemen. How much are you prepared to pay for the safety of suspects and policemen?

Apple patent filing suggests solar powered iPhone

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Pirate

Hail to the sun god: Ra! Ra! Ra!

Average insolation in mainland US is about 125 to 275 W/n^2. Call it 200W/m^2, use an experimental 40% efficient 5x7cm cell, use 80% efficient (modern) batteries and 85% efficient chargers (an excellent mains charger - solar power powered chargers are less efficient because the have to handle a variable input voltage). That would power a basic modern phone (no 3D graphics or GPRS) continuously with about 4hours/day of talk time (250mA at 3.7V transmit, 10mA standby).

If people want to spend their day pointing their phones at the brightest available light source, then we can just about make this work now.

Well done to Apple. This has most the attributes of a profitable patent: mass market, obvious, plenty of prior art. There are a few things they missed though. For real success, they should patent software for a business method and sneak it into an open standard.

Phoenix beams back Martian postcards

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

$200 digital camera

The Register chose/scaled an image to match their site. The Surface Stereo Imager has a resolution of 1024x1024 and can detect 12 different wavelengths.

1024x1024 seems to be a popular resolution on interplanetary probes. I assume they have a CCD element that they know can survive being shaken up during launch, six month's radiation dose in space followed by re-entry into a corrosive abrasive atmosphere. If they want a higher resolution, they can make a mosaic - the rocks will not leap about that much between shots.

Try drop testing a $200 digital camera. Martian dust is particularly intrusive and abrasive. Bury your camera in a sandy beach, then try to take photographs at twelve different wavelengths.

Electrosticky droid boffin in spider-gecko tech bitchslap

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Go

@physics?

My book shelves stay attached to the walls without using any power at all. Putting them up and knocking them down requires energy.

It is the same with electrosticky. The article gives no clue about the energy required to attach to a surface, or if it is possible to recover that energy when releasing a surface. The 100microwatts is for remaining attached.

[Also two 40cm shields may be a bit big, but four 23.1cm shields (keep three attached at all times) would also work.]

The economy: A big Arab did it and ran away, claims PM

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Why not get to work in a 4x4 full of concrete towing an empty bus?

Every weekday I walk past a queue of cars each carrying one person. About once per week I see a motorcyclist. I am sure many of the car drivers need a car once or twice a week, but it is cheaper to use a car all the time than to tax and insure two vehicles.

If Mr Brown wants to reduce fuel prices, he has to reduce demand. If you could switch your tax disk back and fourth between a car and a bike, I am sure the insurance companies would offer competitive a deal.

BTW, if you think oil managed by OPEC is a problem, just image how bad it would be with Gordon in charge.

Tory proposes street-legal Segway legalisation

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

One use springs to mind immediately

Excellent, lets cancel all MP's travel expenses except for one segway each.

Stem cell researchers claim victory in battle with Church

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Mitochondrial DNA

Cells of people, cows, squirrels, penguins, plants and fungi contain mitochondria. Mitochondria contain their own DNA, and reproduce independently of the host cell. Mitochondria make adenosine triphosphate (ATP) which is used to power most processes inside cells. AFAIK, Mitochondria are the only source of ATP (IANAboilogist).

I think the plan is to create embryos with human chromosomes (where most of the DNA lives) and cow mitochondria. I have yet to read anything that tells me the advantages of such embryos.

DNS gaffe leaves spy agency totally under cover

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

If DNS and http on same/different boxes

If the DNS+http box breaks, people cannot read my web pages.

If my http box breaks, but my separate DNS server is working, people cannot read my web pages.

Where is the advantage to me of paying for a separate DNS box?

Developing world buoys up software pirates

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Who cares what the BS All. say?

26% of new PC's in the UK did not have to have the Microsoft virus removed before installing linux. No wonder Microsoft's BS All. has to spin these figures hard.

(2/3 most wished for laptops on Amazon do not come with MS bloatware ;-)

Scientists discover galaxy's youngest supernova

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Alien

@Tim Brown

2.5e6 years is far too short for any measurable change in the rate of supernovas.

There are stars made out of hydrogen left over from the big bang, and eventually such stars will be few and far between. When such stars supernova, the release huge clouds of gasses including a variety of elements - not just hydrogen.

The sun formed about 4.5e9 years ago, from gasses ejected from supernovas. The sun will supernova in about 3.5e9 years, and the gasses ejected will eventually form new stars. Stars are still forming in our galaxy, and this is not going stop any time soon. There will be plenty of supernovas to watch in the next billions of years.

(Maybe aliens put up some dust clouds to protect us from supernova ratiation ;-)

Vendor touts notebook as desktop server replacement

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Go

Server disks in a portable?

2.5" disks move the heads of the surface before spinning down - the better ones will move the heads somewhere safe during free fall on the assumption that the drive is about to experience a shock. 3.5" disk life time limited by the number of times the heads can land on the disk before they get scraped off. 3.5" disks do not bounce anything like as well as 2.5"disks.

If you want this thing to work reliably, keep one drive shut down in reserve and set up the other two mirrored.

Think of this box as being proof against spyware and adware. It can be loaded down with crap, take part in a brute force password cracking botnet and still keep up with an eee pc.

MS whips lens cap off WorldWide Telescope

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

MS users, welcome to the 20th century

Stellarium is a bit ambitious for my cheap laptop, but it did run without a fuss even if it was a little jumpy. I am sure it would work much better with a cheap graphics card. Kstars was very smooth.

A quick glance at the subversion trees shows modifications to each project as far back as 2002, so neither is particularly new.

http://www.stellarium.org/

http://edu.kde.org/kstars/

Laptop: Intel T7200 @ 2.00GHz, 945GM (G=graphics decelerator, M=64 bit data bus).

Babbage's Difference Engine hits Silicon Valley

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Beat this Lego photographing vultures...

http://acarol.woz.org/

Dell promises replacement keyboards for wonky laptops

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

\THE \NEW \LOOK \FOR \CAPITAL \LETTERS

\many year ago, the left S\hiFT was next to Z. \it took me ages to get capital letters right when \ moved in between S\hiFT and Z. Fortunately, this change happened after it was common for terminals to be able to output lower case. (\old terminals marked real capitals with a \ in front.)

\the new layout, with \ where I expect the right \sHI\ft, just changes the capital letters that come out wrong.

It could be worse. Chinese keyboards lack |, which makes it awkward to use filters from the command line.

What did happen to all those London mayoral votes?

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Joke

@Mike Banahan

If MP's get paid in proportion to the number of people who voted for them, the base rate and expenses would increase to compensate.

I think MP's pay should be brought into line with teachers, nurses, firemen and the police. After that, if MP's want a type of expense, two of those groups should get it first. If they want a pay rise, it should be no higher then what the others get.

MP's get expenses for a London home. I do not see them returning those expenses when they are voted out. We have student loans. Why don't we have MP loans?

Linux guru Hans Reiser convicted of first-degree murder

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Reiserfs already had problems

Reiserfs was useful for a while, but there were good reasons to pick something else before Nina Reiser disappeared suspiciously.

http://blog.linuxoss.com/2006/09/27/suse-102-ditching-reiserfs-as-it-default-fs/

InPhase finally to phase in holographic disk

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Moore's less

I would buy 500GB hard disks now. Well before there is a risk that the disks become unreadable, I could replace them with something half the cost. Repeat until 50 years pass, and the total will still cost less than holographic media, plus I do not have to pay $18,000,000 for a reader in fifty year's time.

DARPA wants microscopic atom clocks on chips

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

PC clocks are inaccurate to save money

Quartz crystals are good at doing about 1 to 40MHz. PC clocks go at 32KHz to reduce power and hence the cost of the backup battery. The frequency of quartz crystals varies with temperature, some more than others. You get what you pay for. The crystal circuit also includes the PCB, a few capacitors an a chip. Variations in these components add a small error to frequency. Many years ago, that was fixed by adding a small variable capacitor, but that costs some money to add, and more to set correctly.

If you want you PC to know the right time, use some network time protocol software.

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

Still looking for a clock that reads either: "Yes, there is time." or "No, there isn't."

This DVD will self-destruct in 48 hours

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

In space no-one can hear your dvd.

Some materials contact weld in vacuum. Most lubricants evaporate in vacuum. If you put a DVD player in vacuum, it will jam up before it overheats. The current drawn by an electric motor is reduced by the motion, so the peak current is used when the mechanism is jammed. The control software might be sensible enough to give up when the disk is stuck, but I am not going to test this with my DVD player.

If you solve the lubrication problem, you will have to deal with the lack of air cooling. An inert gas is cheaper than vacuum, and copying the DVD is cheaper than an inert gas (except for the dozen people who get caught).

This is just another solution looking for a problem. The easiest way to reduce the price of DVD's is not to buy when they are first released.

Google paid click rate decelerates (again)

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Newbies click on adverts

Think about how you got here:

Did you create a web page with your favourite sites, and set you browser to default to that page? No chance of a newbie doing that.

Did you add the page to your bookmarks? A challenging operation for a newbie. Some might accidently do this. Eventually they find how to recall a page from a bookmark, but by the time they do, they have hundreds of bookmarks, and it is too much effort to find the right one.

Did you type part of the URL and let the browser complete it? Newbies have only one hand, it is glued to the mouse. They ignore the URL because it looks a bit technical.

Did you get here from your browser's history? If a newbie can find the history, the good sites are lost in the mass of places they have been.

Did you use a google search? Newbies can somehow find google (I assume the have a google button on their browser). They can get a bunch of links from google, but if they were not looking for Paris, the sites are rarely related to what they were looking for.

In real life, newbies click on some link on the page because they do not know what else they could do.

'Jisus' Eee-alike sub-notebook to use Chinese Atom-smasher

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Will it be called Moohammed in the middle east?

Squashing more pixels onto an 8" screen will not help - the pixels are already small enough unless you are really short sighted. I would prefer a bigger screen, but that would cost more money.

£240 is perfectly understandable for small batch production. It takes massive investment to get the economies of scale needed for a lower price. I am amazed he got enough investment to reach £240. Perhaps he did not tell his investors the Vista cannot run on MIPS.

If this box does not need a fan, and if I can read the display in sunlight and when running on batteries, then it will be far more useful than the fragile noisy box I am using now.

Microsoft discloses 14,000 pages of coding secrets

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Hungarian notation

Like other MS inventions, Hungarian notation started life in Xerox. It was used in BCPL, which has one data type. An extra clue about what a variable is for was useful in BCPL. HN was supposed to give information about a variable's purpose. MS missed the point. Now people think that HN means encoding the data type of a variable in the name. This just repeats the work done by the compiler and adds extra confusion when the encoding gets out of step with the data type.

In some situations, HN done properly can make C source code clearer. If the prefix of a variable and a function name do not match, you may have found a bug.

Fining MS until they produce documentation is not going to achieve anything.

IE was never free. People are forced to pay for it as a part of the purchase of a new computer. The only sensible way to allow competition is to forbid the sale of MS software with a computer. By all means, install a deactivated copy of Vista for free, and let people who want Vista pay a separate activation fee.

RM to push new HP sub-laptop to schools

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

£300 is not a cheap laptop

XO has a screen you can read in sunlight, stands a reasonable chance of surviving being dropped, does not make you a target for muggers and is far cheaper.

BBC vs ISPs: Bandwidth row escalates as Tiscali wades in

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Avoiding the license fee

When I got tired of the BBC, I tuned my TV and Video away from all the stations, removed the antenna and cables, then stopped paying the license.

If I tried that now, I would be in trouble I have equipment capable of receiving the BBC's transmissions over the internet.

I would happily use one of the ISP's named by the BBC so I could avoid paying the license fee, and so I could avoid paying for other people using Kontiki.

The license fee is worth about 28 DVD films or 140 episodes of a series per year. Decide for yourself how long it would take for your DVD collection to give a better choice than BBC+commercial channels.

Gates teases bankers with Windows 7 dates

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

W7 minimum recommended system requirements

Here is my guess:

4 Core CPU, 16GB Ram, 200GB flash, stereoscopic monitor with two 1GB graphics cards, HD-DVD, keyboard, moose, internet access, credit card number and rectal scanner to confirm user is licensed.

Creative climbs down over home brew Vista drivers

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Read the license...

People got a license to use the drivers with their sound cards. I have lived in penguin land for a long time, so I have not read such a license for years. At a wild guess, distributing a modified driver is illegal. Distributing a replacement driver is probably legal. Distributing a program that modifies a driver might be legal. Using a driver that has been modified by such a program stands a remote chance of being legal. Get legal advice, or better yet, get a sound card with driver that has a better license.

In penguin land, I assume anything with a binary blob driver will not be supported when the manufacturer wants to sell more hardware. Vote with your wallet.

Intel shows Atom-powered Eee PC clones

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Paris Hilton

You missed the most important bit...

Who will be on photographed the beach with these toys?

Intel's 'Living Large' mantra threatens tour guide industry

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Where's the Intel angle?

I can also see the day when when typing on the back of seat tray allows me to send e-mail with my neighbour's blackberry. When I can stand outside a conference room and send cartoons to the projector. Recognising a place from a photo of a landmark is challenging. Far easier to use GPS or mast numbers. Anyone want to index wikipedia by lat/long?

We do not need an expensive CPU for any of this, just open standards.

Adobe cuddles up to Linux Foundation

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Do the licenses create or restrict freedom?

Source code can come with a horrible license:

"You saw it, you cannot un-see it. We will sue you for any software you create in future because we will argue that you could have based it on our software."

There is a massive difference between open source, and free (as in freedom) software. Adobe are welcome to charge what they like for the software they create. I would only consider buying it if it came with a license that gave me the freedom to use it as I choose.

I still remember Dmitry Sklyarov, so I am in no great hurry to examine Adobe's offering.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2001/12/14/case_against_dmitry_sklyarov_dropped/

Get your German interior minister's fingerprint here

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

@Alan Donaly

Yes a decent photograph will defeat most fingerprint scanners. The better ones require you to warm the photograph with your finger. A quick web search will lead you to a video by Mythbusters showing how easy it is to defeat these scanners.

Fox hunters should only be allowed into parliament if they have the hand or eye of an MP.

Blu-ray 0, SDHC card 1, THX Chief Scientist predicts

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Go

Makes sense to me

Millions of people downloading films at the same time is not going to work outside Japan for decades. A flash device big enough for transporting a film is a tolerable price now. I have had DVD's wear out, but I have never lost data on a hard-disk. If it was legal, I could copy my DVD collection onto a pair of 1TB disks - more convenient and smaller.

Desktop hard-disk life is limited by spin-up/spin-down cycles (use a laptop disk if you are going to spin it on demand). My OS runs well out of flash now. If there were 1TB disks designed to spin-up a few times per day, they would be ideal for films.

I will not tolerate DRM. I would prefer to buy a film with an explicit license to keep it on a 1 home device + back up device + 1 mobile device of my choice.

Going to a shop to get a copy of a film on my flash key suits me, but this can only happen if it suits other people too.

So what's the easiest box to hack - Vista, Ubuntu or OS X?

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

@firewalls

"If you have a fully patched machine without viruses or trojans etc, and you have a Norton / McAfee / TrendMicro etc. type firewall with all the ports except internet and email locked down, are you still vulnerable to be taken over completely from the Internet?"

A firewall inspects all the packets of data arriving from or going to a network interface, and then decides what to do with each on according to a list of rules. A firewall can reject a packet, ignore it, forward it, redirect it, log it or some combination of the above.

Send whatever you like at my telnet port, and you will not achieve anything useful - even if the firewall leaves the port open - as I have nothing listening on the telnet port. Setting the firewall to blocking outgoing packets with a destination of port 80 can make a machine more secure at the expense of making it difficult to access the internet.

The competition is based on cracking computers that have (more than) enough software working to make them useful, so the firewall rules have to be quite lax.

"What about if you also have a modern router with an ADDITIONAL firewall?"

A second firewall is only going to do the same thing as the first firewall, and is only of value if you think the first firewall is defective.

Once some data is past the firewall, it is up to some application to treat all the data from the network as suspicious. Some applications do a worse job than others. Any bug in an application that causes network data to be trusted without rigorous checking is is a weakness that can be exploited. A badly designed application will give the exploiter root/admin access at once. A better design gives the cracker only the authority that the application needs, so she need a local elevation of privilege exploit to get root/admin rights.

As far as I know, Norton / McAfee / TrendMicro antivirus software is more than just a firewall. They also examine files and processes for clues that they are not a virus/trojan/worm/root kit. This adds an extra hoop to jump, but as I have not used windows for over a decade, I have not bothered to find out if it is a significant barrier.

"Surely that must be safe?"

Safe from what?

If you get access to my desktop machine, you can change what TV programs I record. I have not made a huge effort to secure it is not worth anyone's time to crack it. It is acceptably safe for me.

If you crack my laptop, add a key logger without me catching on, get my gpg password and my encrypted password file, you could play with my bank accounts. Find a gullible mule to launder the money for you, and you get a few thousand. I have added enough personalised security to make this not worth your time. Again, it is acceptably safe for me.

An individual installation of XP/Vista/Linux/OSX/BSD may not guard much value, but when a single image is installed on thousands of machines, the budget available to crackers will be far in excess of what any individual is prepared to spend on defending the machine. I would not use a large mass produced software image to defend anything that I could not easily replace. Other people have different opinions on what is safe. If I had ten years of experience securing XP, I might have different opinions too.

Microsoft codes leap year bug into Exchange 2007

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Go

The real test is September 1752 in the UK

That is when the UK switched from Julian to Gregorian calendars to standardise with Europe. September had only 19 days. Tenants paid a full month's rent, employees received pay for 19 days and christians got upset because 11 days had been taken from their lives (The date of their death is supposed to be written in some book. Imagine the chaos is they believed that heaven's bureaucracy used excel).

MetaRAM double stuffs servers with memory

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

This is a huge step in a pointless direction

These days, you could fit a fast CPU and 64MB of SDRAM on the same chip with a pile of hypertransport or PCIe links. Link 16 chips together, and you have a 1GB 16 core machine with low latency and high memory bandwidth.

Opera CTO: How to fix Microsoft's browser issues

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

@Ken Hagan

"zombie PCs make no money for Microsoft"

Zombie PC's are slow, and slow network access for machines on the same connection. People replace the entire machine instead of the software, so they buy another Microsoft license.

One ISP tried phoning customers with zombies and recommending security programs and patches. The majority of the customers considered the calls useful. They did loose a few customers, but sending bandwidth hogs to their competitors is a good move for budget ISPs. In a twisted way, it makes some sense to give legal hassle to owners of zombies.

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Flame

Easier to herd cats than force Microsoft

I am happy for Microsoft to discontinue XP when they choose. They can make Internet Explorer as non-compliant as they like. If supporting IE is a problem for web designers, then they do not have to support it. The only way users will learn that IE is defective is if web pages render badly in IE.

I object to being forced to pay for MS software with a new PC. Distributors could put a free version of deactivated MS software on their computers. I could wipe it out and install something that works. Lock-in victims could pay MS to activate the software.

Trying to force MS to do something useful is a complete waste of time. Just fine them for each copy activated pre-installed software.

RIAA chief calls for copyright filters on PCs

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Pirate

They could prevent most copyright theft in a month

If they reduce their prices, people will buy from them instead of thieves. Their profits will rise because they will get a bigger market share, and they will also create new customers - the ones who will not pay high prices or thieves.

While they are at it, they can unbundle albums and give an explicit license that says where I can play music that I have bought. There really is no point in me buying a CD now that they will sue me for playing it on my own ogg player.

MIT in pedal-powered 'super' computer stunt

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Boffin

Alternator efficiency

1200W/10 people: 120W each. A normal alternator is about 55% efficient. Allow for some loss in the bicycle and its connection to the alternator and we get 240W each. Not outstanding, but still respectable over 15 minutes.

Wishing you an EMF-free Christmas

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Pirate

Taser proof clothes?

If LessEMF demonstrate their clothes short out tasers, then they might have a real market.

The phone pouch has some value too. The only way I could stop a mobile ringing when on charge was to put the thing in a biscuit tin.

Ordnance Survey rescues rural towns from juggernauts

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

You can update maps

At http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/

I have yet to find any evidence that you can download these maps onto a commercial GPS. I would be interested in a USB GPS connected to an XO, but I cannot get an XO here. Looks like I might have to search for the blond^H^H^H^H^H Eee PC.

Microsoft wins seven figure sum from distie

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Paris Hilton

Why do people tolerate MS EULA's?

There was a time when second hand software was perfectly legal. I have not used MS software for a decade, but I gather the licence just keeps getting worse. How many Vista sales are repeat sales for the same machine just to get one restriction in the license removed?

Apparently Dixons have a pile of unsold Vista licenses. It looks like someone abroad had a similar problem, and sold the licenses here - and this is not permitted by the license?

I wonder why anyone one even considers distributing properly licensed MS software. It does not sell, and if you do find a market you get sued.

When MS sued their own customers it was beyond silly. Suing their distributors does not look like a good way to grow the market to me.

Transformers director blames MS for HD DVD/Blu-ray format war

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Linux

Too expensive for now

The most I will pay is for a film is £5, and £1/42min episode of a series. I am not going to pay more for higher resolution. This format pissing contest will be over by the time they reach my price point.

I already have a pair of ten year old CRT monitors that display 1600x1200 clearly. I have no intention of downgrading to LCD unless they break. There is no way I will tolerate DRM - I buy a DVD and I expect it to last forever. I bet MS will stop supporting legacy DRM when Vista II comes out.

As for downloading, factor in the cost of hard disk space alone and it is not going to be real this decade.

Experts paint bleak picture of security in 2017

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Paris Hilton

2017 - Vista II

MS likes everyone to replace all their software every five years. This means they would hope to release Vista II in 2012 and Vista III in 2017. Achieving bugward compatibility is getting more and more difficult. Vista II will be even later than longhorn. Although MS will release VistaDoublePlus for resellers in 2012, we will thankfully be able to wait until 2017 for Vista II.

We should expect the first pre-alpha versions of Vista II to be installed as standard on all new digital watches in 2007 (Remember to buy a truck to carry the power source). Judging by past performance malware will have difficulty with Vista II because it takes two days to boot up, but only one day to crash. Read up on Bitfrost some time to get a preview on the barriers malware will have to face as standard in a few years time.

The other good news is that many senior administrators will be off spending their index liked pensions in 2017. With any luck their replacements will not be quite so computer illiterate.

Look forward to seeing the EEEEE PC model. In 2017 it could be Paris Hilton's daughter.

Microsoft offers $300m for web-washing ad campaign

Flocke Kroes Silver badge

Why not go with the tried and trusted slogans

Use Microsoft Live Services or we will sue you for patent infringement.

Use Microsoft Live Services because soon you will have to pay for them even if you do not want them.

Use Microsoft Live Services or someone else will put up a shoddy site in your name.

We spent $300,000,000 on advertising Microsoft Live. It's that good.

Microsoft Live - we will not let your customers go anywhere else.

Microsift Live. It is not like you have a choice.

Microsoft Live. Who cares if it is crap. We are the monopoly.

Trust Microsoft Live. Microsoft Live is your friend.

Microsoft Live shreds your e-mails at the first hint of a law suite.

(Picture a lion scratching himself and knocking over a chess board) Microsoft Lice has the beast spilling chequers.

21st century travel: building your own warp drive

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Stop

Two warp drives, one at each end of the journey

If your spaceship can distort space, the distortion moves ahead of you at the speed of light. If you go faster, you enter undistorted space, and are limited to the speed of light again.

The solution is to put warp field generators at each end of the journey. Crank them up, and let them run until there is a path of distortion between the two generators. Although the gavitational waves are limited to the speed of light, the wave that is the sum of two components moving in opposite directions can have any velocity. You can then ride the crest of a wave at that unlimited velocity.

The other way is to use the lighthouse trick. If you light spins around once per second, 100,000km away the illuminated area moves at twice the speed of light.

Bad news is the generators would have to be enormous to avoid dispersion, so you would wreck the source and destination star systems.

Hushmail open to Feds with court orders

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Black Helicopters

Computer Science - Solving yesterday's problems tomorrow

This particular wheel was re-invented years ago:

http://www.gnupg.org/

Create your public/private key pair, upload your public key and others can send you e-mail only you can decrypt.

Find for your friends on the key server, and you can send them e-mail only they can decrypt. (Although plenty of people can

tell who you send encrypted email to.)

In the UK you must regularly change your key and erase the old private key because the police can demand your password. If you do not bother to change your keys, you are better off keeping you password secret if your e-mails explain how to make bombs.

More gnashing of teeth after Microsoft update brings PCs to a standstill

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Go

Software not available for linux

Anyone got a clear spec for this unavailable software?

How much is it worth to you and your competitors?

Got a sample support contract?

A new open source project will not have the tested and proven track record you require, but five years from now when Vista2 is a real threat you will wish you had published your requirements.

The first rule of Reg Club is...

Flocke Kroes Silver badge
Stop

Fairness and equal time

What is this rubbish about fairness and giving equal time to the opposing view? Does Richard Dawkins have to put flat earth theories on his web site? I do not see anything about the Church or Lucifer after a news report about the pope.

If I want to talk about that upstart operating system called Vista I should not have to mention that there is a tried and tested alternative that has been around since 1991.

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