* Posts by Chronos

968 posts • joined 21 Oct 2007

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Softcat warns of Brexit cloud forming over UK tech, vows: If prices rise, we'll pass them on...

Chronos
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Already USD == GBP

...in this sector, at least. Now they're looking for an excuse to gouge us even more? Softcat? More like Fatcat.

Bastards.

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Finally. The palm-sized Palm phone is back. And it will, er, save you from your real smartphone

Chronos
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All that's old...

...is new again. Tech progress is a big circle. Once it comes around again, you don't quite notice that it's USP is what you had 20 years ago (Nokia 8210? Ericsson T68i?). So it is with this.

My $DEITY, it's a small 'phone that works for making calls! Why did nobody ever think of this before?

The thing that differentiated Palm from the rest was PalmOS. Not WebOS, which was the Prè's downfall, but good old low res PalmOS with Grafiti. This is just another Mars bar reboot with Android shoehorned into it which, for using the virtual koybred (best I can do on a touch screen), will be bloody useless.

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The Obama-era cyber détente with China was nice, wasn't it? Yeah well it's obviously over now

Chronos
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Re: China

Name one national government that isn't evil. Chronos's comment was meant to put down the US, period.

No! It was meant to put down blind faith in western "democracy," i.e. the pre-selected choices we get to elect the usual bunch of corrupt incompetents every single time, as the epitome of human advancement in government. You completely missed the point when I switched from "The US" to "The West." While we're lobbing rocks at China, we're not sorting our own shit out. "Better than them" == "dryer than the sea" and is no cause for celebration or declaring the job done.

This little island and Europe are currently deadlocked in a battle to see which bunch of corrupt incompetents gets what slice of the pie to waste - and waste it they will, whoever wins. Granted, they won't have big limos and massive security retinues - oh, wait...

So no, I'm not chucking rocks at the US. I'm chucking rocks at the people who meekly accept this system that only delivers misery time and again, myself included as my sole contribution to protesting this situation is to refuse to take part aside from making snide comments on El Reg. At least you folks have write-ins on your ballots, for all the good they do...

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Chronos
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Re: China

But it's all a joke, right?

No, it's the lesser of two evils. Just because the West's excesses aren't as visible as China's doesn't make them any less evil. Satirising these excesses are probably the only recourse we have at this point - until, that is, people like you come along and try to stop us with silly hyperbole. For example:

and re-education camps for religious minorities

Sounds like Gitmo to me.

Now that's reductio ad absurdum done properly.

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Chronos
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Re: China

@hplasm: Spooky. That's exactly, word for word, what I was thinking when reading that comment.

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World's largest CCTV maker leaves at least 9 million cameras open to public viewing

Chronos
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Re: The problem is...

- The Xiongmai CCTV controller software is a _large_ stripped monolithic binary, but it actually contains a number of subcomponents (an OS within an OS?) and whilst attempts have been made to obfuscate what is in there, GPL symbols abound, as do the signatures of a number of GPL packages

Aye, the infamous "Sofia" binary. Realistically, the only way to secure these things is to filter at the gateway by MAC. Even then, a malicious local operator could easily break into the things or a zombie Windows box could deliver the payload, change the MAC with the nvram utility that is present on these things and bypass the filter.

It's a shame because the hi3518 with the OV9712 sensor is a pretty capable little night vision system. If they opened the source for these things they'd probably sell millions more of them, especially if one were able to set up only rtsp, motion alarm (I have a listener daemon for XM alerts which spawns an ffmpeg 30s recording) and a simple control panel for the settings. Add MQTT instead of the XM proprietary alarms while we're at it...

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On the seventh anniversary of Steve Jobs' death, we give you 7 times he served humanity and acted as an example to others

Chronos
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This is exactly the sort of thing that keeps us coming back here time and again. People who have received a humour bypass are going to be offended, usually because many a true word is spoken in jest.

For the intended audience, it is pitched perfectly and poor taste is infinitely preferable to none at all.

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Chronos
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Re: "oh boy"

He was a genius at marketing bullshit and convincing people to follow him.

I wish I could up-vote you more than once for this. Woz is the engineer¹. Ive is the designer. Jobs was the sales droid. It just happened to be a particularly persuasive sales droid with a built-in reality distortion field generator and zero scruples. Cook isn't quite the salesman Jobs was but all the hard, ground-breaking work has already been done. All Cook has to do now is whisper "new iPhone" to himself in an empty bar somewhere and the free marketing comes piling in.

¹ Actually, Woz is an über-geek, despite his Masonic connections. The epitome of non-greedy techie nice bloke with roots in the early phreaking and hacker culture and the naivete that usually accompanies those traits. Many of us can relate.

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The fur is not gonna fly: Uncle Sam charges seven Russians with Fancy Bear hack sprees

Chronos
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Mushroom

Slightly below average temperature war.

I'm beginning to wonder if certain parties on both sides have looked back, seen all the money that was made and advances realised during the Cold War and are trying to return to those days. I certainly wouldn't put such a motive past Arsenoise and our very own Old Grey May-or would like a bogeyman or two if she's to undermine online encryption. Vladimir Vladimirovitch is quite happy because it makes Russia look like a superpower again and everything is gravy.

Icon. It doesn't really matter that yet another generation of kids will go to sleep wondering if they'll wake to a blinding flash followed by vaporisation or radiation sickness.

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Volkswagen links arms with Microsoft for data-slurping cloud on Azure

Chronos
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Devil

New model

Volkswagen Up! Down. Up! Down. Up! Down.

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As one Microsoft Windows product hauls itself out of the grave, others tumble in

Chronos
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Wile E. Coyote

The Register contacted Wileyfox to find out how long this stay of execution might last but has, as yet, received no response.

That's you, me and everyone else who bought a Storm who is waiting for them to stop twatting on Twitter and get back to us. So far, nobody has had any luck.

We need a Wile E. Coyote icon, preferably one of him off the end of one of those desert rock formations looking resigned to his fate and holding a sign which reads "BYE!" A very apt metaphor for companies which tit about too much on social media rather than concentrating on things that matter like getting the design right, not putting the magnetometer near a power rail and giving the LEDs enough copper surface to dissipate heat.

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Spoiler alert: Google's would-be iPhone killer Pixel 3 – so many leaks

Chronos
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Here's a clue. My nearly five-year-old Moto G (the original one) still gets regular updates via LineageOS. There's a new build out every Wednesday and I tend to install them monthly.

*Applause*

Moto Gs less than or equal to v4 are built like brick outhouses, reliable, fast enough for anything but gaming and have more accessories than you can shake a stick at. Mrs Chronos has a Moto E. It's not as fast as a G but it still runs Nougat, gets an update a few days after AOSP vulnerability day and doesn't spy on her.

Even replacing the "built-in" battery for a G is a doddle.

I made the mistake of buying into the Wileyfox hype with the Storm (which just got Oreo from Lineage - not bad for an obsolete model that, before they went TITSUP¹, they disavowed ever producing) when I really should have bought a Moto. Lesson learnt.

¹ Total Inability To Secure Useful Profits, mainly due to titting about on Twatter and Farcebook instead of dealing with issues. And no, the bloody magnetometer still doesn't work and the LEDs behind the softkeys winked out one by one, never to return.

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Chronos
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You're on Android. Complaining about an OEM slurping your personal data is like complaining about damp patches from under a capsized boat.

OEM Android, perhaps. Since the Orange San Fran, no OEM firmware has survived the unboxing here at Chronos Towers, although that has presented its own unique set of purchase research issues.

Of course anyone buying into the Pixel range is going to get rogered sans lube but, then, the Pixel isn't aimed at us. Far better to go with the BQ¹ mentioned by another commentard or something similar that can be freed from the data fetishists. It's a 'phone, not a fashion statement.

By the way, "glass back" is a derogative meaning lazy bastard over here. Devices with glass backs do not inspire confidence.

¹ These folks are a pretty geeky company. They also make 3D printers and consumables - and they're very good.

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Intel boss admits chips in short supply, lobs cash into the quagmire

Chronos
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Holmes

ORLY?

"The surprising return to PC [market] growth has put pressure on our factory network," said Swan. "We’re prioritizing the production of Intel Xeon and Intel Core processors so that collectively we can serve the high-performance segments of the market. That said, supply is undoubtedly tight, particularly at the entry-level of the PC market."

Meltdown, Spectre (all variants), and people are still buying this half-arsed crap in droves?

Bullpats. Artificial scarcity disguised as capacity issues in an attempt to protect the cash cow from a well-deserved rogering by the silicon buying public.

While Intel screwing up would undoubtedly be Very Bad™ for technology, I have to admit a large part of me would like to see them smart a bit as payback for this and the weaselly way they tried to alter the microcode licence earlier this year.

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UKIP doubled price of condoms for sale at party conference

Chronos
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Go

Inflation

"Look, mummy, Nigel Fromage balloons!"

"They're bubbles, dear, and they're about to burst."

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UKIP flogs latex love gloves: Because Brexit means Brexit

Chronos
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Stop

Heh.

Surely a condom means you don't have to pull out? Who thought this was a good match to their member-ship?

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Chronos
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Farage

I always said the man was a knobsack.

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Oi, you. Equifax. Cough up half a million quid for fumbling 15 million Brits' personal info to hackers

Chronos
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WTF?

Gob = smacked

"20,000 records included people's names, dates of birth, telephone numbers, and driving license numbers"

What in seven hells¹ were they doing with driver numbers? More to the point, how did they get them? DVLA being mercenary again? With that, a date of birth and a national insurance number they can pry into all manner of things that are none of their sodding business. So can script kiddies now.

Time these bastards were brought to heel.

¹ obligatory GoT outburst

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Oh Smeg! Hacked white goods maker resurfaces after system shutdown

Chronos
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Re: We are down to cat milk

Yep, it was never the same without Norman. Even the 8th series with its nonsensical nanobots recreation was worth watching just for "Gawd, I hope we don't get spotted by the rozzers. They don't like it when you're rat-arsed."

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Chronos
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Indeed. I would have told them they can schtick their preschumtuous schite right up their schphincter.

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Chronos
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Wait, are you trying to tell me that everyone's dead?

Should never have let him out in the first place.

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Chronos
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Re: We are down to cat milk

No bugger would drink it.

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Chronos
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It's a state of the art sarny.

Holly: "It's the state of the floor that worries me."

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Linux kernel's Torvalds: 'I am truly sorry' for my 'unprofessional' rants, I need a break to get help

Chronos
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Re: Don't let the namby-pambys run the Kernel, Linus!

@jake: This. A thousand times this. The last thing we need is some touchy-feely commune with yurts, natural fibres and tofu-based nutritional snacks where nothing gets done but ever so politely and ecologically.

While I do feel that profanity should be more seasoning than sauce, the result of cooking without seasoning isn't exactly something you'd want to eat.

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US govt concedes that you can indeed f**k Nazis online: Domain-name swear ban lifted

Chronos
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Re: Bottom hidden by fog

There's a Bluebell End in Cheshire. Not sure what happened there but it sounds painful.

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Microsoft: You don't want to use Edge? Are you sure? Really sure?

Chronos
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Stop

The plot.

"I'm sure I left it here. I just had it a moment ago. Can you check your pockets again?"

Any tenuous grasp they had on reality has slipped away. As any reasonably experienced driver will tell you, this is what happens when you blindly follow the SatNad.

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Brit armed forces still don't have enough techies, thunder MPs

Chronos
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Devil

Re: Simple answer.

You're right. Or possibly low places. One or two of them must be in league with Old Nick just for the kickbacks...

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Chronos
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Simple answer.

Why aren't more people lining up to fight with a mouse, keyboard and gun?

Perhaps because anyone smart enough to wield the first two is smart enough to know our leaders are about as batshit crazy as it is physically possible to get without being sectioned.

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PPI pushers now need consent to cold-call you

Chronos
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Too late

The whole PPI scam collapses next year anyway. They'll then move on to something else to continuously mither you with at mealtimes.

Bastards. Thank $DEITY for Asterisk.

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Vodafone hounds Czech customers for bills after they were brute-forced with Voda-issued PINs

Chronos
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Joke

Surely...

...at least an identity Czech?

Icon. And not a very good one, sadly.

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Nope, the NSA isn't sitting in front of a supercomputer hooked up to a terrorist’s hard drive

Chronos
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Re: Clipper ? - Intel ME

I used to love Compaq's ILO boards. Thing with ILO was you could remove them and, even if you didn't, they were under your direct control.There is only one logical reason why this technology has been adopted by both USian processor manufacturers and that reason certainly does not have your best interests at heart.

What I object to with all of this is that it fundamentally undermines the assumption of innocence and the concept of mens rea. We already have RIPA over here doing much the same thing. The situation in the UK is so bad that it is now possible to lock anyone up at whim. Just take their smart phone, encrypt it with a random key, fabricate a reason to require decryption and lock 'em up when they can't.

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Chronos
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Re: Clipper ? - Intel ME

Agreed, with the little addendum that AMD also has a Judas-puter in the form of PSP. Right now, nothing in the current x86 line-up is trustworthy. Not a problem, you may think, just run older kit? Well, many of the services you connect to are also running Xeon/EPYC. It really doesn't matter which end of the pipe gives up the unencrypted data as long as one of them does.

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Thousands of misconfigured 3D printers on interwebz run risk of sabotage

Chronos
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Re: Why

Precisely this. It's not as if you're going to be able to do anything about it if the Octoprint camera shows filament spewing out in a big rats' nest that is going to jam the whole thing up imminently while you're miles away watching it over your mobe apart from hitting the reset button and hoping that it doesn't ignore the Z stop - again.

Besides which, 3D printers shouldn't really be left unattended. Forcing plastic through a nozzle heated to ~200 degrees? What could possibly go wrong?

Disclaimer: Mine has a WiFi connected serial port for use with Pronterface, which saves me having to bugger about with cables. Its MAC is firewalled off at the router and it gets a bogus default gateway. Security onion and all that...

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If you weren't rich enough to buy a Surface before, you may as well let that dream die

Chronos
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Windows

Searching...

Nope, not a single fornication to give. Right out of excrement quanta, too.

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TSB goes TITSUP: Total Inability To Surprise Users, Probably

Chronos
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Stop

After 20 minutes on the phone they sent her a new link what cause her not only to reset her password but her security questions

Do they still do that? They need to go away and write 200 lines "Most e-mail is transferred in the clear; e-mail is not secure."

Any old munchkin could have intercepted that link and no, SMS isn't much better.

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Chronos
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FAIL

Someone at TSB doing the work of two men...

Laurel and bloody Hardy.

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Microsoft gives Windows 10 a name, throws folks a bone

Chronos
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Devil

Re: Obviously...

A lot of excel stuff doesn't work at all.

Indeed. It usually goes like this:

"This has a pivot table in it."

"Why did you need to use a pivot table? Was selecting a subset of cells for that line graph too difficult?"

"..."

Because they know "I wanted to be able to say 'pivot table' in meetings" isn't a good reason.

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Chronos
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Joke

Re: Crashy McCrashface?

Ah yes, blanket surveillance :-)

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Chronos
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Crashy McCrashface?

More like Snoopy McSpyface. Actually, why don't they just ask for permission to use Mr Schulz' beagle as their mascot?

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AI sucks at stopping online trolls spewing toxic comments

Chronos
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Stop

AI sucks

You should have just stopped there. No article necessary.

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Hello 'WOS': Windows on Arm now has a price

Chronos
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Plus ca change...

most legacy applications were so deeply reliant on x86 quirks that only a subset could run, and customers didn't want a subset. Windows RT was short-lived.

So what's changed? That is still the situation and Windows' ecosystem is still heavily legacy-encumbered. *aaS hasn't significantly altered the situation.

Now, if one could, say, recompile code to the architecture of choice, then that would be fantastic. It's a shame there's no way to do that. Oh, wait...

Of course, you'd have to ditch Redmondware, which is a catch-22 situation if you're moaning about 20+ year-old applications not running. The problem, as always, is the users; you can't really blame them for wanting stability and a familiar working environment but it's causing all manner of crap upstream. The irony is that if you build out your workstations from scratch and have /home sitting on networked storage, you can have interface stability for as long as you like. The trick is to wean the users off of Windows just that one time.

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Mozilla changes Firefox policy from ‘do not track’ to ‘will not track’

Chronos
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Re: It's about time

Firefox looks and feels like Chromium (and probably contains a lot of its internals these days).

Nope. Different rendering engines. The Chromium clones all use Webkit, as does Safari. Firefox is (currently, on my machine using ESR) Gecko, which can trace its ancestry back to Navigator and is really the daddy of them all.

It may well be that Fx uses similar mechanisms to do certain things but not direct copy/paste or #include bit_of_chrome.h. It wouldn't surprise me to hear that Chromium contains many Fx-inspired bits rather than the other way around. The "chrome" in your profile directory means "shiny shit that isn't structural" - and pre-dates Chrome by years - rather than "Google's browser."

After all that positivity, which is well out of character for me, let me just issue Moz with a warning: I will not accept inserted ads on new tab pages or Safebrowsing¹ potentially reporting my every URL to Google. Find a way to make the latter opt-in or host the definitions anywhere else but Ogle and leave the former out behind the barn with a bullet in its head.

¹ I know this is supposed to protect lusers from themselves but should it really be necessary to do about:config and mangle the URL to disable it completely?

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Android data slurping measured and monitored

Chronos
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Re: 'The nature of some data may also surprise. App developers receive your age and gender'

You'll never convince the prescriptivists of that, though. They live in a fantasy world where the gods hand down immutable rules of English usage that none may question.

Oh, I'm fine with evolution. My aversion to LaaV (leverage as a verb) is simple. Let me say the same thing twice:

"We're going to use our experience in this field to produce something decent that people will want to buy. Keep me and the rest of the team informed of progress and problems, please."

"We must leverage core competencies and utilise our core IP to produce an innovative product that will obsolete the current paradigm, incentivise our clients and increase our market share. The core team will touch base often and will ensure that hurdles become opportunities."

Guess which of these is spoken by someone who knows what she's doing and will result in something that isn't a complete and utter dog's breakfast, shoddy to the point of worthless and impossible to support...

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Chronos
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Re: Blessed are the poor

Now, it they could get the health data too... that's something poor people could contribute... "the nearest compatible organ donor is ...."

Ah, so that's what William Gibson meant by being rolled in Chiba for parts. All becomes clear.

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Chronos
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Re: 'The nature of some data may also surprise. App developers receive your age and gender'

>"Leverage" is not a bleedin' verb.

https://www.dictionary.com/browse/leverage?s=t

verb (used with object), lev·er·aged, lev·er·ag·ing.

to use (a quality or advantage) to obtain a desired effect or result:

She was able to leverage her travel experience and her gift for languages to get a job as a translator.

So leverage IS a verb (a transitive verb, to be specific), and if I have to, I'll look up OED, too.

The defence would like to place on record this,, which describes the act as being "very sensual" when, in fact, it's nothing of the bloody sort - it actually reminds me of the time one of my dogs accidentally ate some elastic from a piece of meat. Citing this source as authoritative is probably not a good idea.

Also this.

The defence rests its case, m'lud.

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Chronos
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Re: 'The nature of some data may also surprise. App developers receive your age and gender'

I had one whose answer to people getting root and stripping out system traitorware was to deliberately corrupt the ext4 filesystem on /system so that mount -o rw,remount /system failed back to read only. I did manage to reset the onerror flag to continue and disinfect but they're not worth the time, effort or rage to get them working properly - usually because they never will.

Stick with Qualcomm. How much longer that would have been my advice had they been Borged by bloody Broadcom is left to the imagination.

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Chronos
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Re: 'The nature of some data may also surprise. App developers receive your age and gender'

Correction : The only way to successfully avoid that is not to have bought a phone with Googles Android on it in the first place.

In an ideal world, yes. However, you try getting something with the screen, processing power, ancillaries and connectivity of an Android device without the Trojan horse OS for reasonable money. Far better to take advantage of their "kindness" and gut it of its traitorware.

This isn't blind trust. I run multiple utilities on the device itself via root adb shell to ensure I haven't missed anything any time there's a major change. I even strip out bits of Lineage that I don't trust such as the Jelly browser, e-mail, messaging and their update and feedback apps. In their place is Firefox Mobile, K9Mail, Silence and sod all because I'll track changelogs myself. Gone is anything Googly-syncable and in its place is DAVDroid and a self-hosted Nextcloud backend.

Not for everyone, I admit, yet for those of us for whom messing with builds is more fun than chore, it works. We're not going to change the world for Joe Public this way, though.

Andoid devices have been a Trojan for Google to get inside your walls almost since they first came out.

Agreed. My first 'droid device was an Orange SanFran simply because that was the first reasonably priced handset that was a doddle to unlock, CMify and disinfect right out of the box. Its stock OS lasted just long enough to remove the SIMlock.

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No D'oh! DNS-over-HTTPS passes Mozilla performance test

Chronos
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The elephant in the room is farting...

...and still nobody notices the damned thing. While SNI is still sent in the clear, you can obfuscate your DNS queries all you like, they're still going to log and store that first header. TLS1.3 should have dealt with this but, as usual, it's just too difficult to re-implement SNI over a secure channel now world+dog's httpd is happily using the current SNI implementation. It would require something like a DNS fingerprint of the hosting IP's default virtual and then a process to get the wanted certificate fingerprint for the domain after the request is transmitted over a secure channel to the host httpd. Not an easy task and adds a lot to the initial handshake where TLS1.3's focus was on trimming that down.

While this is still an issue, DoH is still a false sense of security.

BTW, DNSSEC != encryption. DNSSEC is simply a hierarchical method of verifying the records haven't been intercepted and changed. The data is still sent in the clear.

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Who is your favourite world leader?

Chronos
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Chancellor Martok

...because he's fictional, fights his own bloody wars instead of sending someone else to do it, would be a few hundred light years away on his own world of Qo'noS if he weren't fictional and he's got one eye rather than no eye, dear.

Qapla'!

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Tax the tech giants and ISPs until the bits squeak – Corbyn

Chronos
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Mushroom

Sod off, Corbyn

Taxation by the back door. You know that this will be passed on to end users, so as much as your "reduce the licence fee for poorer households" looks appealing, it is, in reality, complete bollocks. In fact, you can also stuff the regressive TV licence up yer arse along with that red flag.

"Compete with Netflix et al" by giving the Beeb an unfair advantage over and above the one they already have? What you're actually doing, rather unsurprisingly given your confessed inspirational heroes, is creating the British version of TASS.

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