* Posts by Martin Gregorie

768 posts • joined 10 Apr 2007

Page:

HTML5 may as well stand for Hey, Track Me Longtime 5. Ads can use it to fingerprint netizens

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Anyone test-driven Brave or Vivaldi browsers etc?

I tried Vivaldi when it first came out, but didn't like it a lot: I like more control of the fonts, font sizes and controls than it gives and found its text size zoom profoundly irritating. It was part of the Fedora default install for a long time, so I kept trying it and deciding it was still not what I wanted. Then, a year or so ago its Fedora package vanished. I've ignored it since then.

1
0
Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Bar-stewards

I think anything that severely restricts cookie lifetimes is useful.

I'm achieving the same thing, but without having to restart the browser all the time by using the Cookies Exterminator add-on. This auto deletes cookies, localStorage and IndexedDB objects as soon as they become unused. I see it burst into life each time I leave a website. Its configurable enough to not delete stuff left by nominated sites.

There are other add-ons that do more or less the same thing, though there may be tricks that the add-on of your choice doesn't know about. All I can say is that I haven't (yet) spotted anything the Exterminator should have deleted but didn't.

6
0

Destroying the city to save the robocar

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Obviously the solution is....

For automated cars to work properly and not constantly be gamed by human drivers then all manually driven cars would have to be banned from the roads.

This is the big problem that all the autonomous car advocates forget: for a significant number of us, a roar vehicle that can't be manually driven and/or can't tow (and park) a trailer is completely and utterly useless. Examples:

  • as a glider pilot, I need to be able to retrieve my mates if they land out. This means towing their trailer off road into the field they landed in and positioning it in front of the glider while the glider is derigged, loaded into its trailer and then towed home in its trailer.
  • Sailors will have similar requirements when launching and landing their boats

Even if trailers are not involved, there are everyday uses of road vehicles where their use becomes impossible if they can't be manually driven:

  • Model fliers need to drive off road too: club flying fields and sites major competitions are all off the road system and lack the markings and curbs an autonomous car will need to be parked
  • Visitors need to park at National Trust or English heritage sites: its unreasonable to expect them to pay for building car parks suitable for automatic parking.
  • Emergency services will be unable to operate if all road-using vehicles are forced to become autonomous.

...and there are doubtless many other cases where the ability to drive a road vehicle manually is a necessity.

27
6

ITU aims to to keep the radio on with new satellite regulation fees

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge
Joke

Re: 1,000 Satellites?!?

Has anybody calculated the LEO satellite population needed to guarantee a 1% chance of collision with a new launch?

2
0

Heathrow Airport's local council prohibits drone flights from open spaces

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

This is totally unsurprising

A quick look at the ICAO 500,000 scale aeronautical chart for Southern England and Wales shows that both Heathrow and Northolt are both well inside the London CTR, which is class D controlled airspace from the surface to 2500 ft. In short, nothing should be flying there without explicit permission and that includes drones and model aircraft.

This isn't a new regulation either: London CTR has been in effect and about the same size for at least a decade and has been class D airspace since July 2014.

8
0

Cabinet reshuffle leaves UK digital policy and GDS rudderless. And now the news...

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: re: PPE Grads

What - are they even more useless than MBAs?

3
0

Indian data leak looks to have been an inside job

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Cheepnis

Don't forget that 500INR is roughly 6 quid. Sounds like a pathetically low cost for corruption, even in India.

1
0

Intel, Microsoft confess: Meltdown, Spectre may slow your servers

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: "8th Generation Core platforms..."

Since this affects the majority of CPUs Intel has sold in the last 11 years, "8th Generation Core platforms" is an irrelevancy. You're stuck with Meltdown and SPECTRE until Intel finishes its redesign and rolls out a new series of chips. That's likely to take some time, so don't hold your breath while waiting.

Switching to ARM devices may well be the quicker solution.

12
1

MPs sceptical of plan for IT to save the day after UK quits customs union

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Hmm

Sceptical of gov not being able to deliver IT, must be a day not ending in 'Y' - FIFY.

I've been a contractor on two large Government IT projects for two different departments. Both were clusterfucks. The first was fixed by bringing in an army of contractors and replacing the management with DataKill people. The second one failed in a cloud of managerial infighting for the fourth time in a row.

0
0
Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: but they took a clear decision

..and for clarity is was a non-binding referendum.

Quite, and as that was written in clear legible text in the gummint-issued booklet explaining the referendum, I call all the MPs who claim the referendum was binding to be blatant, deliberate liars.

15
0

Whizzes' lithium-iron-oxide battery 'octuples' capacity on the cheap

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: H too, Oh

Personally, I'd rather have a vehicle I could "recharge" in minutes vs hours

So would I, but I'd also like one that still has liquid H2 in its tank after a week in the garage.

8
1

Woo-yay, Meltdown CPU fixes are here. Now, Spectre flaws will haunt tech industry for years

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Itanic, S/Z

Yes, you're probably right about monolithic kernels having had their day, but microkernels have their problems too. Going back a bit, the DEC Alphaserver, whose UNIX was based on a Mach-type microkernel, was a case in point.

While the Alphaserver punched far above its weight (a single CPU, 0.5GB Alphaserver was easily able to support a 9 man dev team working on a RedBrick data warehouse-based system), we got our arses bitten by Mach kernel performance in one or two specific cases. Although the Mach central message switch could execute several system calls simultaneously, this was only true if the system calls were all different: no system call code module could execute multiple calls in parallel. As a result a burst of them would be serialised by queueing them and executing one at a time until the queue was empty.

RedBrick segmented its tables and indexes, so a large database (ours was one) had each big table and associated indexes spread over many UNIX filesystem files. As a result some global DB operations, which applied the same system call to all segments holding a table and its indexes and involved at least one physical disk access per filesystem file holding these segments, caused major performance hits. This was a direct result of the need to serialize the associated system calls. We could watch it happen by looking at a tracing tool, so didn't need to guess at the cause or that the calls were serialized.

Bottom line: microkernels are only good if their structure lets them execute multiple parallel calls to a any system call code module. At the time I'm talking about (1999-2001) Mach-based microkernels didn't do that.

9
0

Soz, guys. No 'alien megastructure' around Tabby's Star, only cosmic dustbunnies

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Dust?

... or might it be surrounded by a Smoke Ring, with the dimming caused by forests of Integral Trees.

13
0

SuperFish cram scandal: Lenovo must now ask nicely before stuffing new PCs with crapware

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Removing all crapware

I'm on my second Lenovo laptop at present and see no reason for using anything else: they are well-built machines with good keyboards and I like the RED BUTTON. As an added bonus, my start-up process for any new system is guaranteed to remove all forms of crapware:

  • Open package, take out system, connect all cables
  • Put rescue disk in drive, power on to boot from it
  • Completely wipe the HDD/SSD using gparted
  • Crapware is now gone.
  • Install Fedora Linux

49
11

Hyperledger 3 years later: That's the sound of the devs... working on the chain ga-a-ang

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: no real use case ?

A related problem: if the stuff I've been seeing recently about the number of CPU cycles, and hence energy consumed, required to generate the cryptohashes used to verify a blockchain is true, then blockchains are not only looking very much like solutions in search of problems but are also legitimate targets for energy efficiency taxes.

5
1

We've heard of data gravity – we're just not sure how to defy it yet

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

When it gets to testing you're too late. It's about getting your design right.

Spot on! If you can't analyse the data flows in a new system in terms of immediacy, latency requirements and volumes at the design stage then you have no business calling yourself a designer or system architect.

Have an up-vote.

5
0

Virgin Hyperloop pulls up the biggest chair for Branson, bags $50m, new speed record

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: So, when is he going to build Space Cannon One?

Space Cannon 1, even if built up the side of Everest, would likely loose a huge amount of energy to aerodynamic drag. Add in the fact that launch acceleration would be limited by what the fleshies on board could stand. Combine the two and it seems likely that SC1 couldn't put anything into Low Earth Orbit without using second stage rockets, and the mass of these would make the whole thing impractical.

So its obvious: he's waiting for a NASA or Space-X contract to build it on the moon, where a horizontal solar or nuclear-powered electromagnetic launcher could fairly easily kick large loads past lunar escape velocity for return to Earth or interplanetary flights.

See Robert Heinlein's "The Moon Is A Hard Mistress" for a fairly realistic view on lunar electric catapults and lifestyles.

5
0

Seagate's lightbulb moment: Make read-write heads operate independently

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Old tech solved this decades ago

ICL solved this problem back in the early '70s in software for the George 3 OS from version 6 onwards. No hardware changes needed.

The solution used two i/o request queues for each disk plus a record of where the heads were and which direction they were moving (inward or outward). Requests were added to a queue in positioning order. Which queue they were added to depended on whether they could be serviced by continuing to move the head in the same direction or not.

The end result was that head movements were much shorter than if they were serviced as they arrived and consequently overall throughput rose. The improvement was obvious if you stood by a working drive: instead of the heads thrashing in and out, they floated relatively slowly in and out across the disk accompanied by a steady, and much faster, stream of clicks for each head movement. IIRC this at least doubled the per-disk throughput.

Of course, this approach won't work if there is only a single task running fast enough to dominate disk i/o, but for any server with a multiprocessing workload it should help a lot.

8
1

Australian central bank says 'speculative mania' and crime fuel Bitcoin

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: What goes up

At a guess a lot of the pressure toward using crypto currencies for electronic payments is coming from the US of A and their antediluvian banking system.

We simply don't need crypto currencies for payments here: within the UK we can use FastPay and CHAPS. Within the European SEPA area the IBAN uniquely identifies destinations at the personal account level and seems to be about as quick as FastPay in the UK. Australia and NZ have similar systems to FastPay and, IIRC, had them first. We also have the choice of using SWIFT or PayPal for quite a wide range of international transfers.

But in this area the US still seems to be the poor relation: where we can use CHAPS for the high value private transaction when we buy a car or a sailplane, the Americans still seem to rely on paper, with a bank Cashier's Cheque seemingly the medium of choice, but its SLOW - relies on snail mail to get it to the seller and then apparently weeks or longer for the cheque to clear and the money to find its way to the seller's bank. With the time all this takes its small wonder there are several fraudulent games that take advantage of the delays in the system.

I've asked Americans if they can't speed things up by using PayPal, but answer came there none, which is odd since, when I sold a radio to a US Gliding Club earlier this year, they suggested PayPal as the best payment option. We used it and "it just worked" (TM).

Apparently this is all a hang-over from the '30s depression and its aftermath, when the Feds came down heavily on US bankers, and split the banking system up so nothing was too big to fail, but boy did they make a mess: when I worked in NYC in the mid '70s I had to deal with the US banking system and it was horrible: my account was in a 5th Ave branch. I had to go there to get cash despite that bank having a branch where I was working on Long Island. Big contrast with the UK and NZ, where I don't remember EVER not being able to draw cash from any branch of a bank you had an account with.

10
1

Big tech wants the ICO on EU data protection board in Brexit fallout

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Smile, it's Tate & Lyle

@Dan 55

Same here. Several years back I sat in on one of the early privacy meetings which was chaired by DD, and came away with the impression that he was a fair-minded privacy advocate. But, of course he was in opposition at the time and has more recently turned out to hold pretty much the opposite views. Come to think of it, that is nearly identical to our beloved PM and her stated views on Brexit before the Referendum and her actions and speeches afterwards.

Is it fair to call them duplicitous? Yes, very much so.

15
0

New Ruski hacker clan exposed: They're called MoneyTaker, and they're gonna take your money

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Hate to be "That guy" but...

I came here to say exactly the same. Have an upvote.

SWIFT HQ is in La Hulpe, just outside Brussels and AFAICR is owned by its member banks.

5
0

Disk drive fired 'Frisbees of death' across data centre after storage admin crossed his wires

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

@Wolfclaw

When I started in the business (1968), we all wore ties and jackets to work. You could recognize the REAL old-time engineers amongst the tea-time rabble because they all wore bow ties. They'd been trained on card sorters, collators and other large, high speed mechanical kit. Wearing a normal tie was dangerous if you serviced those: bend over a running card sorter and if your tie dangled into it, you were instantly part of the machinery.

25
0

Los Angeles police tell drivers not to trust navigation apps as wildfires engulf area

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

We know that Google have accurate dates for their satellite imagery because Google Earth can give you a list of dates to choose from. Since they have the information, it would be a good idea for their app and/or in-car nav system to show

"THIS VIEW IS 999 [DAYS|MONTHS|YEARS] OLD"

across its top edge when a punter switches to satellite view, just to make it blindingly obvious that the driver is not looking at real-time data.

Come to think of it, dating the maps would be a good idea too, though that doesn't need to be as prominently displayed.

11
0

Behold, ye unworthy, the brave new NB-IoT logo

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

That logo...

Looks more like a bad drawing of a tractor that's lost its front wheels than anything else.

4
0

Apple looks forward to wiping $47bn off its overseas profit tax bill – thanks to US shakeup

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Yes, by all means, bring that cash home

Hold it! Hold it! Hold it!

I doubt it that US banks, however squeaky clean (or not...) could have brought us The Great Financial Collapse Of 2008 all by themselves. And they didn't.

RBS, LLoyds and Northern Rock all did what they could to help them out. They must have done a good job: just look at how their respective C-suites were rewarded.

And, while we're praising the great and the good, how about a small tip of the hat to Barclays and RBS for their sterling efforts to enhance the workings of LIBOR a little bit later.

13
7

Former US State Department cyber man: We didn’t see the Russian threat coming

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Tit for Tat at last?

One thing that is already possible in greater international co-operation, something that can be achieved through diplomatic channel. Painter explained how whilst at the US State Department he struck a deal to get help from other countries in taking down nodes of a botnet that was attacking US banks in return for a promise of co-operation from the US in the event of those countries needing assistance at some future date.

So, does that mean that the US will henceforth help the rest of the world to apprehend suspect US nationals and hand them over just as readily and with a similar degree of evidence as they demand from the rest of the world? Given that it would be a 'UGE break with recent practice and tradition, just how likely is that?

16
0

Vivaldi Arms onto Raspberry Pi

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Dunno about Vivaldi. As a former fan of Opera I was keen the try it, and did when it was first released as a standard package for the Fedora Linux distro. However, I didn't like some features such as replacing the ability to set fonts and point sizes for different types of text with a text scaling control (I don't like serif fonts). So I went back to Firefox, every so often checking to see whether Vivaldi had improved yet. It never did. Other folks must have thought the same because Vivaldi has now vanished from Fedora - its not even an optional extra package now (Fedora 26).

Meanwhile I still dislike the way Firefox has gone with its steadily dumbing down reduced configurability and have settled on PaleMoon as my usual browser.

1
1

That 70s Show: Windows sprouts Sets and Timeline features

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

The ancestor of Timeline was surely...

... the idea described by Vannevar Bush on his 1947 article for Atlantic Monthly in July, 1945, called "As We May Think":

http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/194507/bush

As the earliest reference to hypertext I'm aware of, its well worth reading.

13
0

Scotland, now is your time… to launch Brexit Britain into SPAAAACE!

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Prestwick??

As others have said, Prestwick is pretty well placed for lobbing stuff into high inclination or polar orbits, but its got 9000 ft and 6000 ft runways. This also makes it an excellent place for space plane operations, such as Virgin Galactic's White KnightTwo/SpaceShipTwo for starters, followed by proper workhorses with orbital capability like Reaction Engines' Skylon and Bristol Spaceplanes Ascender (assuming they're still in existence: last news update was in 2015).

By comparison Campbeltown and Newquay have just a single 8000ft runway. Stornoway has 6600ft and 3200ft. LLanbedr has 7000ft and 5000ft. Newquay and the Stornoway main runway both look to be rather crosswind for prevailing UK winds. IOW Campbeltown and Newquay have long enough runways even if they are rather crosswind but LLanbedr and Stornoway look rather short for serious spaceplane development: longer is better when you're trying to land something with not much wing and a correspondingly high touchdown speed.

7
0

Russian rocket snafu may have just violently dismantled 19 satellites

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Kerbal Space Program

Not RUD at all, just plain LOOSE: Lack Of Orbital Speed Error

12
0

Tesla reveals a less-long-legged truck, but a bigger reservation price

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Electricity vs Petrol/Diesel prices

I'm really curious about the quoted reduction in energy costs that result if you chop in your diesel truck for a Tesla.

I've tracked my home energy costs for several years now, which show that currently I'm paying around 13.3 p/kWh for domestic electricity and 12.1 p/kWh for the petrol used in my car.

IOW, all things being equal, the energy cost of running an electric car charged off the UK National Grid should be fractionally higher than that of a conventional petrol-driven vehicle. This is based on a liter of petrol providing 9.7 kWh of energy when used to run an IC car engine - figure taken from "Sustainable Energy - without the hot air", http://www.withouthotair.com/ and assumes that electric energy costs at charge points are not subsidized, i.e. you pay the same per kWh at the charge point as you would if you plugged your car into a 13 amp socket at home.

We pay more in the UK for diesel fuel than petrol, but its energy content is higher, so I'm assuming as a non-diesel driver that the cost for its energy content, measured in £/kWh, is more or less the same as for petrol. If this is incorrect, kindly correct me by supplying the appropriate energy content of a liter of diesel road fuel.

Tesla's statement that fuel costs for an electric semi are less than those for a diesel implies that the cost per kWh of diesel fuel is higher than electricity in the US. Is this true?

Over to those living on the left side of the pond...

27
5

Parity: The bug that put $169m of Ethereum on ice? Yeah, it was on the todo list for months

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

It might be rather a good idea for Parity to replace the lost coinage at no cost to those whose wallets have been locked and to do it before they start getting sued for negligence.

Then they can recover and keep the coin in the blocked wallets. Or carry the loss/face bankruptcy if they can't recover the coin. Either way it will serve them right for being careless, lazy bastards.

7
1

Crap London broadband gets the sewer treatment

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: We need more regulators!

...but will its bark be worse than its byte?

4
0

Productivity through tech, UK firms. More cyber, more cloud, more ERP!

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: CBI... Low productivty

...and don't forget the effect MBAs have on technology-based businesses: diminshed productivity due to their inability to understand the business or to avoid pissing off those who do.

5
0

Teensy weensy space shuttle flies and lands

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Playmobil

Jetexes are long gone. You can still find them on eBay, but since you can no longer get fuses or fuel pellets for them, they are collector's items.

The closest replacements are the Czech-made Rapier Rocket motors, which are just a range of small slow-burning model rocket motors that give similar thrust to Jetex motors and burn for a similar time.

4
0

Greenhouse gas-sniffing satellite to be built and tested in Britain

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: The results will be meaningless

Judging by a lead article in the latest New Scientist, what we really need is a swarm of robot sea-gliders to monitor ocean acidity and oxygen content globally rather than yet another atmosphere monitoring satellite: there are a lot of those already to say nothing of a variety of ground-based sampling stations.

The oceanic oxygen levels are far less known, except that they are dropping, and don't appear to be particularly well monitored at present. The effect of this on fish/algae/plankton, which is potentially very harmful, seems to be very little understood.

15
0

Computing in schools improved, but still needs major patching – report

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: The real world

Yeah, Pretty much agree.

Learned programming in Algol 60 on my University's Elliott 503 and used that language maybe twice after graduation. As the OP said, the fact that I'd learned the basic programming constructs was the important thing, since very shortly after that I joined ICL and was immediately taught PLAN assembler and, a year or two later, COBOL.

I've taught myself pretty much everything else I needed for a career in IT by using the "Read The Fine Manual and get on with it" method, alternating with "You've heard of it? Just the man we need: here's the manuals and you're on the project in a week". Along the way I've been everything from project sysadmin (several OSen), DBA, system test manager to system designer and lead developer using a variety of languages and hardware.

IOW, the prime skill that needs to be taught to all pupils in every school is HOW TO LEARN.

Second place goes to a reasonable grounding in the scientific method, basic mathematics and the ability to read and write concise, clear English.

Everything else is just fact cramming and should be unnecessary once a student knows how to learn.

But, of course teaching will never be reorganized along these lines because it would mean people might find out how to think for themselves, and we can't possibly have that!

8
2

Facebook's send-us-your-nudes service is coming to UK, America

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: How Prevalent is Nude Photography....

It used to happen, but amateur nude photography was a minority hobby, at least among those without their own darkroom.

When I was a student, one year I had a summer vacation job in the Kodak (NZ) slide mounting room. Since it was illegal to send nude pics through the post, Kodak had to pull any boxes of slides containing them and forward the box to the snapper's local cop shop for collection.

This meant that those running the slide mounting machines were expected to spot any such photos and check them in a slide projector. Cue a yell of 'Got one!' and a general stampede in the direction of the projector and screen when anything was found.

However during that summer break (6 or 8 weeks - I forget which) I only remember that happening two or three times on my shift.

6
0

Where hackers haven't directly influenced polls, they've undermined our faith in democracy

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: The biggest UK hackers of the lot then?

While we're on the subject of election hackers, don't forget

Cambridge Analytica

I don't think they or their targeted messages have any place in national or local elections. Same goes for all other similar organizations. Their use by political parties should be banned and any candidates or parties found to have employed them should be removed from the election results. Retrospectively if needed, with an immediate bye-election to fill the now-vacant seat.

20
0

Dumb autonomous cars can save more lives than brilliant ones

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Now is that "10 per cent better than humans" or "10 per cent better than American humans?"

You think London is bad? Try Los Angeles.

A lot of those traffic jams is directly due to Good Ole GM. Back in the '30s LA was building a Metro system - until GM bought it up and demolished it.

However, that doesn't affect the fact that the average USAian is a godawful driver by comparison with almost anywhere else in the world.

2
1

Give us a bloody PIN: MPs grill BBC bosses over subscriber access

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: iPlayer and the License

I don't give a flung fig for TV (don't have one in the house and watch a program via the interwebs about once every 2 or 3 years if that) but do value BBC radio output.

Consequently I'd be happy to have a radio-only subscription if that would guarantee support for:

- continued access to radio content on FM channels

- the now arbitrarily cancelled 7-day catch-up service that I used to be able to get via my Logitech Touch

- on-demand access to archived programs: "Old Harry's Game" comes to mind.

Since that would be at least as worthwhile as reading New Scientist (I have a subscription for that, provided on dead trees) I'd probably be willing to pay a similar subscription for the aforementioned BBC services, and certainly would be happy to cough up the equivalent of an online NS sub if there was one, i.e. the current NS sub less printing, packaging and postage costs

8
1

Updating Things: IETF bods suggest standard

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: We need to move past updates

A Web interface is needed because average consumer wants to control it from a smartphone but can't be arsed to login over SSH (or install SSH on the phone) and IOS maker doesn't want to pay for a complex control app or fpor programmers who could make that secure.

TR069 because simple interfaces (unless SSH) tend to be insecure and/or require the owning drongo to not only know there's an update available, but to trigger the update.

"No one in this world has ever lost money by underestimating the intelligence of the great masses of the plain people." - H L Mencken

0
1

F-35s grounded by spares shortage

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: Let's make planes that can't fly......

US planes were excellent Typhoon and Mustang, yes, great.

..and the Mustang was initially designed and built for the RAF to fulfill British requirements for a long-range fighter. At that time the Spitfire and Hurricane were short range metropolitan defence aircraft, which is what they'd been designed for, and once the Battle of Britain was over, the RAF needed something with a longer range that could take on the Luftwaffe over Europe.

The Mustang wasn't up to much with the original Allison engine, especially at altitude, but fitting a Merlin transformed it. Years ago I knew a member of the ground crew responsible for its initial trials in the UK, who described the Allison as a beautifully made car engine and who claimed that he was part of the team that replaced it with a Merlin during the initial trials.

The USAAF only got Mustangs later: remember that they thought that escort fighters weren't needed because B-17 formations had enough guns to deal with any fighters they might meet.

8
0

India to launch moon mission in March 2018

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Have an upvote for your comment about call centres.

However, you missed a point about toilets: the lack of pipes is an issue but is trumped by a lack of water to flush said pipes. Much of India has bugger-all water outside the monsoons, when it has rather too much. So, solve the water retention and storage problem first, then consider whether a western water-profligate sewage system is appropriate in India. If not, work out how a minimal water sewage system might work, test it until it works reliably, promote the perfected technology and implement that.

19
1

NHS could have 'fended off' WannaCry by taking 'simple steps' – report

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: RE: "but where does the money come form"

So, if the makers of MRIs, PET scanners etc can't or wont upgrade them, put an airgap round said devices and the out of date stuff they talk to as an interim measure.

I know that purveyors of various medical devices have traditionally been, ahem, lax about system security. Others might prefer to call it "wilfully negligent" but I couldn't possibly comment. That said, more general publicity on this topic outside the medical and IT communities together with the odd sueball and much more attention to security on the part of purchasers should get their attention.

4
3
Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Re: RE: "but where does the money come form"

Thats easy: instant dismissal for all managers who should have sorted out security but didn't. And their bosses for slack supervision. The NHS is top-heavy with useless management anyway, so the savings made by sacking them will more than pay for replacing outdated PCs.

9
6

IETF mulls adding geoblock info to 'Bradbury's code'

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Yes, a good movie: it introduced me to Dali's paintings. My only disappointment with it was not showing the Mechanical Hound, but with hindsight any attempt to do so would probably have failed.

The master stroke was that there was no text at all in the film apart from numbers. Even the credits were spoken.

If you haven't seen the film or read the book recently, do so: its still relevant and becoming more so.

8
0

MEPs vote to update 'cookie law' despite ad industry pressure

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

my masters won't be able to screw the end users as easily and I won't get my kickbacks.

--> FIFY

3
0

Neglected Pure Connect speaker app silenced in iOS 11's war on 32-bit

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

Evidently never heard of escrow...

I'm surprised that those outsourcing their apps or any other code needed for their products to operate didn't contractually require that the source must be placed in escrow when the binaries were delivered. This should be SOP as protection against the developer going out of business.

Further, if the code is unique to this contract, a not uncommon situation, then I'd expect the developer to deliver both source and binaries on contract completion. That's been the norm for almost all projects I've worked on.

So bad luck for Pure, but they really should have taken better legal advice.

40
2

Whose drone is that? DJI unveils UAV traffic tracking system

Martin Gregorie
Silver badge

You beat me to it: it sounds like they've re-invented FLARM, but using wifi rather than the lower frequency unlicensed bands that FLARM uses.

3
0

Page:

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018