* Posts by Mage

5920 posts • joined 23 Nov 2007

Meet the 1,000 core chip that can be powered by an AA battery

Mage
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13.1 W.

Not realistically an AA cell. That's 10 amps at 1.3V.

An Alkaline AA cell is 1.56V (fresh) to 0.9V at end point and really ought not to have more than a 50mA load for efficiency. An NiMH at 10mA might have half the capacity as Alkaline but at 1A (plausible maximum) about x5 capacity due to MUCH lower internal resistance, though probably half the label’s AH rating at such high current draw..

Perhaps 20 paralleled Alkaline D Cells, or five paralleled NiMH D cells to have a 10 A rating.

So for half an hour on an AA size NiMH you'd need a bit less than 1.3W load. A tenth.

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TalkTalk CEO Dido Harding pockets £2.8m

Mage
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Re: Revolting shareholders...

"until a single large shareholder with an agenda comes along"

Who unfortunately is usually a vulture speculator or asset stripper rather than a real investor. See Eircom since privatisation, or Carl Ichan.

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Mage
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Charity or fleeced Customers?

It would be better if she gave money back to the customers and let any leave without penalty. PR fluff.

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Hey cloud lawyer: Can I take my client list with me?

Mage
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Re: Doing naughty things 101

I'll see your 3.5" and raise you 8" floppies, 1/2" tape, boxes of punched cards and boxes of 132 column "music score" fan fold.

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Mage
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Initial Contract

Ensure your employment contract says that IP and clients you bring are still yours.

That creative IP you make subsequently is yours, though the company has a time limited exclusive contract to exploit it, or else you are a serf.

That clients you add via your personal magnetism subsequently are yours, ultimately, but the company can exploit them while you work there, otherwise you are serf.

Perhaps stop employers creating false redundancies to get "cheaper" less experienced staff and regarding people merely as a resource to be used up and burnt out.

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Apple's 'lappable' iPad Pro concept is far from laughable

Mage
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Re: file

""On the upside, iOS now has just enough filesystem so it’s easy to save into Dropbox, Google Drive or OneDrive"

Er... those are things that work in a browser. Not aspects of a proper filesystem. Anyone using them for other than temporary, non-critical content to collaborate is mad.

I remove things like that that appear in a file browse GUI. I want to make sure I have EVERYTHING on my local file-system and only upload / download copies as needed, which ONLY when 3rd parties used. I use USB or LAN to synchronise my own files, NEVER the internet. The Internet is insecure and unreliable.

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Brexit: More cash for mobile operators or consumers? Pick one

Mage
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Re: UK legislation

Theresa May?

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Mage
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Re: UK legislation

Unlikely as Ofcom always supports Sky, Mobile Companies, BT etc against the consumers. They opposed the EU proposals.

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Gravitational waves: A new type of astronomy

Mage
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all data is shared

Good that it's going to be a collaborative world wide effort.

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Filet-O-Phish: Insecure NFC tag relics hidden under Maccas tables

Mage
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NFC

NFC should have stayed in Warehouses. Been consistently a fail on security and privacy in retail / payments / travel.

QR codes are OK in theory, but should display the REAL URL with a "Do you want to do this dangerours thing?" QR codes are a similar risk to URL shorteners, or HTML where you can't preview link.

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Apple and Android wearables: What iceberg? It’s full steam ahead!

Mage
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not the ground-breaking revamp

Because such a thing is fantasy!

You might eventually get better battery life.

it might be useful without internet or the phone (I have a smart watch with GSM phone built in (mini-SIM) that cost under $20 and runs for 3 days, but I don't use it for web, just hands free voice phone calls and text without the phone).

The audio dictation is good. (It has a micro SD card and USB storage mode).

The camera is rotten. For $10 more you can get one with a better camera.

It has all the typical kinds of useless apps.

Slow incremental improvement of what is basically a kids toy.

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Should we teach our kids how to program humanity out of existence?

Mage
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Re: "a massive drain on my television-watching time"

"children entertainment professional would have shown an off-the-scale amount of Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds, Magic Mushrooms and Good Ole Dope."

Doesn't sound like Oliver Postgate

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E-books the same as printed ones, says top Euro court egghead

Mage
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Harmonisation

Governments will see it as an opportunity to add VAT to paper books.

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Crims set up fake companies to hoard and sell IPv4 addresses

Mage
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Re: and don't forget the radio hams

A mere drop in the IP4 ocean, for world wide use, compared to greed of many USA Corporations and almost all USA Universities.

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Mage
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then resell them to users

Is it actually illegal or immoral?

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Safari 10 dumps Flash, Java, Silverlight, QuickTime in the trash

Mage
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I welcome this.

It proves that Apple can do really smart stuff.

Now where is the browser that by default blocks cookies, microphone, camera, location data, scripts etc etc unless you white list them?

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Space Data dudes say Google lifted Loon balloon tune

Mage
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WWI

They used radio on balloons in WWI with Morse code.

Tethered observation blimps used a cabled telephone connection.

It's such a simple and obvious thing to use balloons as data repeaters (which is what Loon does) I can't see why there are patents.

The Elephant in the room is that Loon needs its own licensed spectrum and is irresponsible and pointless. Even if it was sensible, we now know that Alphabet/Google are totally untrustworthy and not fit people to act as an ISP.

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Apple struggles with the idea of intelligent life outside Cupertino

Mage
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Re: AI

" Current approaches to AI are pretty far from "human curated databases" - although there are no doubt still plenty of those around.

The current buzz is "deep learning" systems, which really can be said to be capable of learning with minimal domain-specific pre-programming -"

No it's all marketing. Just "buzz"

We have ONLY made progress in marketing, hype and jargon.

Bad SF.

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Mage
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Re: AI

Current computer systems can't truly learn, they can't meaningfully create, they only encompass the domain they are programmed for. We don't even have a proper definition of intelligence.

Which so called "AI" system like Watson, Cortana, Amazon Echo, Google, Siri etc isn't just a user interface to a human curated database. Can you as an end user (not the maintaining program team) teach one ANYTHING? Can they solve any problem?

They are just variations of so called "Expert systems", which are programs in three parts, capturing information from a trained expert, curating the database and a pseudo subset of natural language to interrogate the database.

They are not even very convincing simulations of intelligence.

I was considering several AI projects based on my years of programming and AI study:

1) To have a program to learn any arbitrary card game from a human with only defining the terms and no games or goals in advance.

2) To have a program to recognise the music in a recording of any arbitrary music, instrumental, vocal only or mixed, then create the music score for each part. Lots of not very good musicians can do this. Having a program play notation via a pair of robot hands on any arbitrary instrument isn't AI, that's almost trivial and more an exercise in electro-mechanical engineering.

I expect, like chess or Go by computer which isn't AI, but brute force, any achievement of this would turn out to be a narrow domain trick, and not AI. Item (2) is much easier than (1) and can be achieved without any AI.

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Mage
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AI

Maybe simulated "Intelligence" to a point. None of this is real AI at all.

Certainly "Siri" should only run on iThings. Besides it's not actually a local app, is it? Surely it's just an inteface to an Apple Database.

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Austrians are most likely to bare all on beaches

Mage
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Italians

I think of people that look smart in a suit, even without a tie.

No matter which sex they are. Why would smart dressers want to expose themselves?

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Workers rejoice! Marx’s vision will become reality, argues SAP veep

Mage
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Re: He doesn't mention the workers being the owners of the means

AirBnB hosts and Uber drivers are workers with the normal protections and benefits of an employee stripped. All the worst aspects of being self employed and an employee, while "big data" companies make the real profits.

Same with Amazon, Google, Facebook.

It's not a Marxist vision of the future but all the worst bits of "Fahrenheit 451", "1984", "Shockwave Rider" and Harry Harrison's "To the Stars" trilogy.

The guy is either evil or naive or both.

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Astroboffins' discovery gives search for early life a left hand. Or right

Mage
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Re: Enantiomers (mirror image copies of a chiral molecule)

Natural sugars are sweet.

A right handed synthetic sugar isn't sweet.

You can use a bright light and two polarisers (perhaps two pairs of sunglasses) and sugar solution to test this at home if you can get or make the non-sweet synthetic sugar.

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The Microsoft-LinkedIn hookup will be the END of DAYS, I tell you

Mage
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Re: Just closed

It might help (or be pointless) to change email address, verify it, edit all data to believable nonsense and then delete the email address. Optionally close account.

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Mage
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Canada?

"unless you're on LinkedIn, with a well-crafted and carefully curated profile, you're a nobody"

Must be a stranger place than I thought. I was advised to join LinkedIn about 10 years ago. I decided eventually it was a pointless.

The mutual back patting is tedious and I think even recruiters realise now how pointless it has become. People just collecting "contacts" and their "whatsapp" desire to get your address book and spam everyone on it.

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Apple WWDC: OS X is dead, long live macOS

Mage
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Coat

El Reg Invite

It seems anyone saving the $1,600 or not invited was better of.

A lot of marketing and no real substance.

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Apple launches HomeKit app – but where are the products?

Mage
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HomeKit

So they launch a something for Home based IoT

Why do the stupid IoT gadgets need more than a secure browser interface? Assuming people are conned into buying them?

There is an argument for use of a simpler (to run in less RAM & Flash) secure protocol and support the various SRD UHF bands. But does Homekit actually do that?

This is hardly going to boost sales.

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NASA's astroboffins spot the largest ever Tatooine planet

Mage
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Great

Very likely has moons. But would one be big enough to have an atmosphere?

Would make for an interesting "Day/Night" cycle tidally locked or not.

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Microsoft's paid $60 per LinkedIn user – and it's a bargain, because we're mugs

Mage
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Value of personal data

Actually there is no sense in which the violation of Privacy by Google, Whatsapp, LinkedIn, Facebook etc is worth it.

Also the comparisons of $42 / $60 vs a survey of $140 worth is nonsense. The value is not what the site user might put on each piece of data, but how much money the site owner can make per user (usually from adverts) after all running costs. If Users could charge the Site owner a fair amount, then most of these parasites would close as unprofitable.

The business model only works for two reasons:

1) Users actually using the site

2) Advertisers paying site owner to advertise on it.

Ultimately no different to roads and Billboards, except that people's personal data is being exploited AND people are sharing stuff to world + dog and variously damaging privacy and quality of life not just themselves but people they reference who may never even access the site.

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Microsoft buys LinkedIn for the price of 36 Instagrams

Mage
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Re: Eh?

It's already a bad Facebook clone.

"Professional" is a joke.

It's a spamfest and privacy ripper.

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Microsoft to buy LinkedIn

Mage
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Facepalm

I cancelled

Ages ago I set up a disposable email address,

changed all my details

closed account

deleted email address from my hosting.

Linkedin is just full of nonsense and spammy. Maybe started as Social Networks for professionals, but just ended up rubbish.

I can't think what the MS strategy is.

It's not April 1st.

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Thief dresses as Apple Store drone, walks off with $16,000 in iGear

Mage
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Re: It's 2016, why are people still stealing phones?

Perhaps the people the thieves sell to are not very saavy. It's not like the seller will have a customer service counter.

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FFS, Twitter. It's not that hard

Mage
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Flame

Re: make it go away

Yes, really I like so called "Social Media" companies failing. If only Facebook would follow in footsteps of Myspace, FriendsReunited etc and Twitter would finally go bankrupt.

Parasites that are helping to destroy civilisation and raping your privacy. People can use email to talk to their friends and we already get too much of so called Celebs on TV, Radio and Websites.

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Mage
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contributed to a series of actual political revolutions in the Middle East.

Western "Social Medja" fiction.

FB, Twitter, email etc along with Mobile simply being used to communicate, instead of fax and landline voice.

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Now Google backs everyone's favorite trade pact: The TPP

Mage
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Re: USA-ians selling items abroad?

Aren't those things made in China, Turkey, Eastern Europe, Asia etc?

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Berners-Lee: WWW is spy net

Mage
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We don't have a technology problem; we have a social problem.

Partly.

We do have the problem that for email that security and white-listing to allow a sender should have been in the design from the start.

We do have the problem that on WWW, security is an afterthought and defaults of all browsers are wrong, cookies, scripts, microphone, webcam, popups etc all should need white listed on a subdomain basis.

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Government regulation will clip coders' wings, says Bruce Schneier

Mage
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Re: The man's an incorrigible optimist

BBC or BT?

He was employed by BT

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Did you know there's a mega cybercrime backlog in Ireland? Now you do

Mage
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work with the FBI

Given how poor Irish Regulators are, I suppose there will be no practical regulatory hurdle.

Personally I think ANY USA involvement with any State or Governmental etc service in Europe should be illegal. They have proven that they are not trustworthy.

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Grim-faced 'naut Malenchenko prepares to return home

Mage
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Yuri Gagarin's smile

Airbrush photo retouching. Like the flag shot.

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Microsoft offers Surface-as-a-Service from its own stores

Mage
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Rental

My dad gave up TV rental in 1970s.

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Bill Gates cooks up poultry recipe for Africans' paltry existence

Mage
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Better than the other guys

More sensible than Google's or Facebook's plans to exploit Africans.

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Apple to kill off Mac OS X?

Mage
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Re: Apple have a mountain to climb

"They have to do what MSFT have painfully achieved over the last 2 years, creating a core OS that'll run from watches to cars"

Actually the stupidest thing ever MS did. As stupid as having WinCE look like Win9x on a tiny screen.

It's better to have different flavours of OS and ESPECIALLY different GUI / UI / UX for different kinds of systems, user input and hugely different screen size.

I'm no Apple fan, but they did the right thing adapting OS X to give iOS and buying in Fingerworks and putting a totally different GUI on iPhone.

The Apple Watch seems to be pointless, but that's a deeper issue than OS, or the too fiddly GUI on it.

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Mage
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Re: Lame title

"Nothing is being killed off."

Yet.

They removed "Computer" from name

They don't make a physical server any longer

iTunes makes iOS very profitable, OS X / Mac OS / Mac OS X really only makes a small income from niche sales of Mac.

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Sophos U-turns on lack of .bat file blocking after El Reg intervenes

Mage
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Not using a file extension

Linux, UNIX, BSD etc doesn't care about extension. You have to set "execute".

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Mage
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File Endings

FIRST hit on Google

50 potentially dangerous file extensions on windows

Yes, it's got bat pif scr cmd etc.

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Mage
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Mushroom

So...

what about .cmd or .scr or .reg or a load of more obscure endings?.

I have no confidence in this product.

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Your comms metadata is super-revealing but the law doesn't protect it

Mage
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Privacy

Whatever the USA decides about privacy for their own, unfortunately the rest of the world are not even foreigners, but aliens and 3rd class compared to their own humans. So it won't apply.

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Reg photography special: Get a better snap of a BLACK HOLE

Mage
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Alien

Wonderful

Now if we had a copy of the new 500m Chinese Radio telescope on the edge of the near side/far side of the moon, or steerable on either moon pole, that would be a nice aperture combined with Earth based dishes.

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Microsoft's BITS file transfer tool fooled into malware distribution

Mage
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Windows Update

It's so complicated and relies on so many services, that in normal circumstances are not needed by anything else. This was inevitable. Too much complexity = bigger attack surface

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