* Posts by Schultz

1311 posts • joined 22 Oct 2007

Page:

Ah, good ol' Windows update cycles... Wait, before anything else, check your hardware

Schultz
Silver badge

Re: 'Windows 10 is here to stay'

I believe Windows is here to stay, but that doesn't hold me back from exploring less painful alternatives. Turns out that most of my families' computing needs are nicely met with some form of Debian Linux. Not even my kids manage to mess that up beyond repair and updates occur without anyone noticing.

2
2

NASA, wait, wait lemme put my drink down... NASA, you need to be searching for vanadium

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Really?

The numbers don't make sense. According to this book chapter, Vanadium is found with an abundance of 100 mg/kg in the earth's crust, but with much lower abundance in dried biological matter. So there must be some magic either on Earth or Mars to explain why finding Vanadium should be a marker for biological matter. Maybe the article just fails to explain the magic properly.

4
0

Python explosion blamed on pandas

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Execution speed...

when you play with big quantities of data in science, the speed is usually limited by inefficient code, not by inherent properties of the language. When I crunch my 5 GB dataset, making a for loop a little faster won't make my code run in a reasonable time -- but moving to a sparse data representation or avoiding the loop altogether will. Python makes those things easy, that's why it is a game changer for science.

8
1

Intelligence director pulls national security BS on spying question

Schultz
Silver badge
Facepalm

Language ...

It all comes down to what you mean with 'information', 'collecting', ... You say tomato, I say tomato, but who really knows what you mean. Let's just agree to disagree and carry on with business as usual.

At least they still go through the motions and attempt to obfuscate, as opposed to throwing the questioner into jail. So there is still that little bit of respect for the general public, right?

2
0

Climate-change skeptic lined up to run NASA in this Trump timeline

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Belief has nothing to do with it: The fundamental difference between religion and science

Science is not based on belief, but is based on hypotheses, theories, and models. I do not believe in gravity, but I know the theory of gravity and I found that it can explain and predict many phenomena that I observe. The same is true for electromagnetism and all other scientific models.

As a scientist, I actually know that the best scientific theories are fundamentally flawed approximations of reality: relativity theory and quantum mechanics, the very foundations of our scientific world view, contradict each other. So the best I can do as a scientist is: (1) understand the scientific theories, and (2) know when a particular theory will work (i.e., give me a useful prediction). After a few years (or decades) of doing that, a scientist will be awfully good in predicting the outcome of a particular experiment based on those flawed scientific theories.

The church is based on the belief in a fundamental truth (i.e., existence of god). It's the opposite of science. A 'good' priest will be unwavering in his belief, whereas a 'good' scientist will always doubt his scientific theories. A scientific career equals the search for some new piece of knowledge that will contradict (and thereby improve) the existing scientific models.

Let's translate this to climate science. Climate scientists don't believe in man-made climate change, but scientists found a correlation between global temperatures and atmospheric CO2 concentrations, realized that human industrialization increased this CO2 concentration, and created a scientific model to explain this observation. Ever since, numerous scientists tried to confirm or contradict this model. After a few decade of this work, the vast majority of scientists is convinced that the model of man-made global warming correctly models and explains current atmospheric temperature changes and can also predict the trend of future temperature changes.

This is not belief, it's confidence in a scientific model. Being science, that confidence can be expressed numerically. Now imagine a priest saying: "I am 99.7% confident that god exists".

46
4

Samsung gains ground on smartphones

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Re: Numbers?

We must assume that the article talks about kPhones. Then the numbers would be in the ballpark of the 2016 shipments, i.e., some 90 MegaPhones for Samsung in Q4, 2016.

2
0

New NIST draft embeds privacy into US govt security for the first time

Schultz
Silver badge

"A focus on improved outcomes"

Now why do I think about a focus on improved (personal) income when I read this? Maybe because it's obfuscation management lingo. I guess the public servants at NIST are learning how to manage their business...

1
4

Go fork yourself: Bitcoin has split in two – and yes, it's all forked up

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

If both [are] viable then the rates should move towards parity

Not quite, the mining possibilities and thereby the expected inflation may be quite different for the forked bitcoins. A bit like expected inflation for Venezuelan bolívar versus US$.

4
0

Fox News fabricated faux news with Donald Trump, lawsuit claims

Schultz
Silver badge
Stop

calling people like me (who have legit questions) all kinds of foul names ...

Big, John, you nicely illustrate the fundamental problem in US politics: Some politicians and friends saw advantage in destroying trust in the public institutions (newspapers, police, justice system, government, ...). Without trustworthy institutions, it's possible to ask any kind of 'legit questions' without ever accepting any answer. Murder of Seth Rich? Must be a cover-up by the police, secret service and news agencies. Sandy hooks massacre? Could be an inside job, the police are just lying about it. 9-11, Pizzagate, Russian contacts of a presidential candidate, moon landing, ... everything becomes a matter of opinion disconnected from objective reality. We see the deconstruction of civilization, because civilization is based on cooperation and cooperation is only possible if people trust one another.

This certainly makes life easier for certain politicians who are now able to spin reality. But it breaks society. It'll be the big challenge of the 21st century: How to restore trust, how to make sure trustworthy people fill the important positions, how to maintain civilization with the cacophony of meaningless dross thrown at you via the internet?

63
2

UK waves £45m cheque, charges scientists with battery tech boffinry

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

The same research everywhere

Try a google search for 'battery research center' and you will find hundreds of research centers looking for a better next battery generation. All of those are well funded and try to get the best research out of the best researchers. Add the research in industry and you'll realize that this 45 million initiative is small fry.

Why don't they try to fund broader basic research? Combine the academic freedom of Oxford in the 80s ("Although the now-commonplace lithium ion battery was developed based on research by Oxford University in the 1980s ...") with some decent support for startups and may be the next breakthrough research will result in some British manufacturing. 45 million is a lot of money if you don't throw it into the fashionable billion-dollar topic of the hour.

1
0
Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Think "cold fusion" and ask why it hasn't happened yet...

What do you mean it hasn't happened yet? It's real, it was published in 2005, it's inexpensive, it fits on your desktop and, unfortunately, it's completely useless for energy generation. The trick was to gently heat a pyroelectric crystal to generate a large electric fields on a very sharp electrode tip. Use the field to accelerate deuterium ions onto a deuterated sample and you get helium-3 plus neutrons.

2
2

Astroboffins discover that half of the Milky Way's matter comes from other galaxies

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Astroboffins ̶d̶i̶s̶c̶o̶v̶e̶r̶ speculate ...

Let me recap the scientific method for you:

(1) Scientists dream up a model that might explain our world ("hypothesis").

(2) Scientists compare their model with observations and validate or reject their model ("validation").

If you make a new observation that requires a new scientific model, then you made a discovery. If you create a model that is not validated by observations, as did the authors of the study described here, then you just speculate and all you have is a hypothesis. This project clearly is in stage number (1); there is no discovery.

13
0

AlphaBay and Hansa: About those dark web marketplaces takedowns

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Criminals are stupid. But what about the police, the politicians, the society?

The war on drugs began many decades ago and is probably older than the average reader of this site. (see: the-war-on-drugs, brief-history-drug-war)

Look at the abundance of drugs today, and give me your honest opinion:

( ) The police won the war.

( ) The drugs won the war.

Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me my whole lifetime, ...?

Let's face it, if those new fentanyl opiates are powerful enough that you can send a years' supply in an envelope, then you might just as well give up the police work. Upside: those powerful synthetic opiates may put the Afghan (Columbian, ...) drug lords out of business. That might end some wars.

2
0

Alphabet takes Euro antitrust fine in stride, spooks investors with rising Google ad costs

Schultz
Silver badge
Go

Fines instead of taxes ... (for Apple, Google, banks, ...)

I guess it's a way to collect public dues while the governments try to figure out how to work the taxation of international companies. Its a bit arbitrary though.

2
0

Boffin supercharges FPGAs with timing signal tweak

Schultz
Silver badge

"Someone else, however, noticed his work, and lifted the paper almost in its entirety ..."

That someone else seemed to include on of the co-authors of the (later, unplagiarized) Carl Ingemarsson paper. So was it a colleague trying to get two-for-one papers out of it? How did he get to stay on the joint paper if he participated in that plagiarization?

7
0

Judge uses 1st Amendment on Pokemon Go park ban. It's super effective!

Schultz
Silver badge
Alert

Using a public park for recreation...

shows you how crazy those kids are nowadays.

56
0

Boffins with frickin' laser beams chase universe's mysterious trihydrogen

Schultz
Silver badge

what could possibly go wrong?

Not very much, 10**13 W/cm**2 is fairly standard in trafast laser physics and can be created with table-tennis lasers in thousands of labs worldwide. The interesting physics start somewhere in the 10**20 W/cm**2 regime, but that takes a seriously large laser.

0
0

Tesla death smash probe: Neither driver nor autopilot saw the truck

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Right, $50 of bars will stop a 4000lb car going 74mph.

Not quite, the estimated cost seems to be closer to $400 when installed during production and $1000 when retrofitted. And yes, those bars would stop a car. Those things are standard in other countries, e.g., Germany, and are proven to reduce deadly traffic accidents.

34
1

Elon Musk reveals Mars colony rocket capable of bringing pizza joints to the red planet

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Not optimal ...

Sending big rockets into big gravity wells and bringing them out again is quite expensive. Better to make fuel on the moon, keep the big rockets to power the earth-mars transit in space, and drop the bigger survival equipment as one-way delivery package onto the mars surface. Return vehicles only need to bring humans back up from Mars, which should be possible with much smaller rockets.

There is water on the moon and therefore the possibility to make hydrogen and oxygen. To build that infrastructure won't be possible within 10 years though. Anyways, we should fly to Europa and start talking to the local space aliens instead of moving into the desert on Mars.

10
0

Uncle Sam █████████ cloud so much, AWS █████████ it another kinda-secret data center

Schultz
Silver badge

Actually a good development

When you create such infrastructure within a government department, you get a lot of bureaucracy with it. I wouldn't claim that the Amazon solution is necessarily cheaper, but if you want to get rid of it again, you have less bureaucratic inertia.

1
0

Five Eyes nations stare menacingly at tech biz and its encryption

Schultz
Silver badge
Go

"The privacy of a terrorist can never be more important than public safety – never."

Indeed, and the privacy of an innocent person should never be violated - never.

Those two statements just mean that you must identify the terrorists first before you violate their privacy. I suggest old-fashioned police work for that bit.

4
0

Swedish school pumps up volume to ease toilet trauma

Schultz
Silver badge
Stop

Wrong solution

Soft music will not properly cover up the more voluminous eruptions. The solution should clearly involve playing fart sounds over the intercom. That would make everyone comfortable.

1
0

Senator blows a fuse as US spies continue lying over spying program

Schultz
Silver badge

"self-developed definitions and legal positions that don't stand up to even basic scrutiny"

Make that:

"self-developed definitions and legal positions that don't stand up to even a basic dictionary"

5
0

Cuffed: Govt contractor 'used work PC to leak' evidence of Russia's US election hacking

Schultz
Silver badge
WTF?

So she got the top-secret clearance ...

but failed to take the course on anonymizing secret documents? They should really improve the training of those people to avoid ridicule! Compare that sloppy handling to the rather competent job those patriotic Russian amateurs handed in.

26
1

LIGO physicists eyeball a new gravitational wave

Schultz
Silver badge
Unhappy

Nice story ... pity about the lousy pictures

The guardian seems to have got hold of a decipherable version for the 'Ligo's gravitationa-wave detection' image.

1
0

Venezuela increases internet censorship and surveillance in crisis

Schultz
Silver badge

'end stage Socialism'

To equate the Venezuelan government with socialism is a bit simplistic. Maybe you want to look at Sweden or other well run social-democratic countries for counter-examples. I would rather call it greed from a corrupt government. This particular government used the label 'socialism' as their fig leaf.

Don't get fooled by the labels, they are a propaganda tools to replace your critical thinking with prejudice. Worry about whether the government is competent, honest, and open.

8
8

Japan (lightly) regulates high-frequency algorithmic trading

Schultz
Silver badge

Re: Tax'um

It's enough to tax them a penny a trade to shut down the economically useless parts (with minimal effects for the traditional purpose of the exchanges). The high frequency operations are scams living off your pension fund. But you didn't count on that anyways, did you?

6
0

Netgear 'fixes' router by adding phone-home features that record your IP and MAC address

Schultz
Silver badge

Re: Similar technical data

The data are integers, strings, floats, and other technical stuff that you really don't have to worry about. Now stop asking those pestering questions.

13
0

Just so we're all clear on this: Russia hacked the French elections, US Republicans and Dems

Schultz
Silver badge
WTF?

Re: Landslide? ... 42% of the electorate voted Macron

42% of all eligible voters is quite a mandate. Let's compare:

Trump is president with some 26% of eligible voters voting for him.

Brexit won with some 28% of eligible voters voting for it.

... could continue the list, but you get the picture. Macron did quite well I'd say.

32
1

Linux homes for Ubuntu Unity orphans: Minty Cinnamon, GNOME or Ubuntu, mate?

Schultz
Silver badge

Re: MX-16 > Debian XFCE

I fully endorse your recommendation. Running MX-16 on several Thinkpads and things just work. Closest to zero-lag that I have ever experienced.

2
0

Hackers emit 9GB of stolen Macron 'emails' two days before French presidential election

Schultz
Silver badge
Facepalm

"... We will never see 1 piece of proof that it was Russia ..."

There is ample proof for Russian trickery online and offline. Take the Crimea invasion and all the FUD Russia spread while it was ongoing. Yet we now have ample evidence of what they did, when they did it and how they did it. Take the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines MH17 over Ukraine. Thorough international investigations established a lot of details that pinpoint the origin of the rocket, yet Russian sources spread ever more intricate stories of FUD (most of which got disproven quite quickly).

It's hard to give 'absolute proof' for anything, but when it comes to online malfeasance, Russia has a well established history of mucking about. Someone obviously created and financed an infrastructure in Russia to lead propaganda warfare against western Governments and I would be thoroughly astonished if that source of misinformation would suddenly vanish. It's people being payed to do that stuff and they will continue doing it while the money flows. So the only question is: what are they going to focus on after the French election? We can expect the same for the German election and for every major news story that puts Russia and the West in conflict.

49
7
Schultz
Silver badge
Stop

"I doubt French voters will blame her any more than American voters blamed Trump"

I would assume that there is a good number of French patriots who would fundamentally oppose electing a leader that is beholden to foreign interests. Only US party politics are so messed up that such a thing could count as 'business as usual'.

37
0

Red alert! Intel patches remote execution hole that's been hidden in chips since 2010

Schultz
Silver badge
Mushroom

Does this mean ...

the we discovered the skynet command and control hardware in time?

2
0

We're spying on you for your own protection, says NSA, FBI

Schultz
Silver badge

It's not data!

"...legal because they're just querying data by this point, not gathering it"

It's even better, they never collected the data, because their understanding of collecting means someone has to look at it.

Anyways, it's not really 'data', because data is an old roman word and they didn't even have computers back then. So cut them some slack!

13
0

Feel guilty for scoffing Easter chocolate? Good news: Scientists have made NEGATIVE mass

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Re: Negative mass?

Negative mass for some definition of mass.

'What definition of mass', you ask? Not any definition that will ever affect the physical reality you are concerned about.

Just like 'Quantum Teleportation' never teleported a physical object in any sense the layman would consider relevant, this 'negative mass' will never help you build the anti-gravity drive.

Laws of physics ... you may not like them but we haven't found better ones yet.

3
0

Lenovo's 2017 X1 Carbon is a mixed bag

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

There's also a TrackPoint micro-joystick ...

It's not a joystick, you should get used to it, and then you'll live happily ever after.

Touchpads are a nuisance.

8
0

Aviation regulator flies in face of UK.gov ban, says electronics should be stowed in cabin. Duh

Schultz
Silver badge
Unhappy

Please discharge battery before entering the aircraft.

Another good reason to make air travelers come 2 hours early and wait.

11
0

Honor phone for paupers goes upmarket, assails flagships

Schultz
Silver badge

So that's "Onour"?

More like "Oner".

1
0

US border cops must get warrants to search citizens' gadgets – draft bipartisan law emerges

Schultz
Silver badge
Alert

Re: Another political 'feel-good' move

The problem of intrusive border guards won't go away with a few tweaks of the law. The agency budget was greatly inflated in the past decades and all those agents have to show some kind of effort. What are they going to do if the rules are changed? Carry the suitcase for tired travelers?

11
0

'No deal better than bad deal' approach to Brexit 'unsubstantiated'

Schultz
Silver badge
Go

... which would stop us creating our own standards ...

The Register never seemed to have a problem creating its own standards.

4
0
Schultz
Silver badge
Stop

walk into a negotiation ...

Well, you try to maintain goodwill before you walk into the negotiations or you can make a lot of angry noises. Just be aware that the politicians on the other side also have to win elections and that their local Boulevard papers will match all belligerent statements word for word.

Great Britain has to renegotiate the bigger part of its foreign relations while any other EU country only worries about a small part of their future. It won't be pretty.

19
3

Canadian court refuses to let Feds snoop on Megaupload servers

Schultz
Silver badge

Seriously?

"1,000 servers based in the US were seized [...] 32 based in Canada may be crucial to proving the case against Megaupload."

That sounds like a gigantic fishing operation. Maybe some people at the FBI will be happy about this outcome: it's not that they have a weak case, it's just that all the crucial evidence is hidden on those darn Canadian servers ...

8
0

Robots are killing jobs after all, apparently: One droid equals 5.6 workers

Schultz
Silver badge
Boffin

Let's be serious about this ...

the problem started way earlier, when those easily sharpened bronze utensils took work away from honest god-fearing stone chippers. And don't forget those selfish farmers with their devilish high-yield crops who destroyed the full-time employment of honest hunter / gatherers.

I say let the robots take over and have the displaced humans work on phone sanitation and space rockets. Based on their progress, we can send a first wave of administrators and sanitation specialists over to Alpha Centauri to prepare the ground for future civilizations.

2
1

Dishwasher has directory traversal bug

Schultz
Silver badge
Mushroom

The only reason for the dishwasher to be connected to the internet...

is to talk to the toaster and the microwave when planning home defense protocols.

6
0

Decapitating Rockall: How a 1970s Navy expedition blasted the top off the Atlantic islet

Schultz
Silver badge

Interesting how much UK loses if Scotland leaves ...

That would really depend on your viewpoint and lifestyle. If you are a city dweller using public transport to commute, you won't loose much. If you are a mermaid / merman drilling for homeland gas to power your sports-amphibian vehicles, then you might have a lot to loose.

0
0

King Battistelli's swish penthouse office the Euro Patent Office doesn't want you to see

Schultz
Silver badge
Flame

"pretty normal by Munich corporate standards"

Except that it's not corporate money paying for this. The patent office is ultimately a body created by the national governments and it might be reasonable to expect it to follow the rough expectations we have for government spending. After all, it's not like you could just spend you patent money elsewhere if you want to avoid paying the EPO.

But then, they seem to have an "annual budget of around EUR 2bn [...] financed entirely from procedural and renewal fees for European patents. So what is a few millions here and there.

18
1

Android O my god! It's finally here (for devs)

Schultz
Silver badge
Angel

What do all these things do?

Think of those background services as a thousand little elves polishing your phone screen from the inside, carrying goodies to the central processing unit (and bringing our the trash), looking under the virtual sofa cushions for that lost SMS, ... All the little stuff you don't want to be bothered with.

So now stop thinking and go back to youtube.

12
0

What should password managers not do? Leak your passwords? What a great idea, LastPass

Schultz
Silver badge

Local storage for passwords

Indeed, use keepass and combine it with your favorite method of keeping data synchronized (e.g., Dropbox, OneDrive, OneDrive, USB sticks, ...) across your computers and phones. It adds a copy/paste step when you use it with your browser, but you are in control and you offer a much smaller attack surface.

Also, is there anything wrong about the browser (Chrome) autofill method for low priority passwords (e.g. for the comment section of ElReg)?

8
0

New Zealand puts the bite on Apple over taxes

Schultz
Silver badge
Stop

Did I read that right?

"Even though American companies are taxed locally, current US law insists they also pay US taxes on foreign earnings."

Shouldn't that be: "Even though Apple is not taxed locally, current US law i̶n̶s̶i̶s̶t̶s̶ ̶t̶h̶e̶y̶ ̶a̶l̶s̶o̶ allows them to delay paying US taxes on foreign earnings."

4
2

Do the numbers, Einstein: AI is more than maths as some know it

Schultz
Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Conceptually, it's all about graphs.

One up for mentioning Prolog. But I have mixed memories, the mind bends dangerously when confronted with too much logic.

1
0

Page:

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2017