* Posts by Peter X

167 posts • joined 12 Apr 2008

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UK mobile number porting creaks: Arcane system shows its age

Peter X

You managed to speak to "the wise one"?!!

To give Three some credit, once we’d found someone senior enough she was genuinely interested in the problem, took ownership and got it sorted

The only way I can think you could speak to someone who actually knows stuff is... SHIBBOLEET! Am I right?

Also, is this a problem that could be solved by DNS?

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Brit neural net pioneer just revolutionised speech recognition all over again

Peter X

Re: It's the complexity we need

<quote>I remember learning that Gaelic didn't have words for the same colours as English, they had ones for blue-greens and grey-blues that we don't have.</quote>

I seem to recall seeing a programme on TV in the last... year or three... about somewhere foreign* (even more exotic that Scotland), where they also had names for colours that we* would consider mere shades. To their way of thinking, those colours were utterly distinct. The opposite was also true, so (I can't remember the colours in question) there was this funny thing where they'd ask them to spot the difference between one colour and another, and they honestly struggled.

So it's interesting how language affects how individuals perceive the world. It's also probably a reason why I *should* learn at least one other language... I won't though! ;-)

* For context, I'm from England, don't speak anything but English, and anywhere outside the British Isles *is* both foreign, and probably exotic to my mind! :D

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NASA flies plane through Earthly shadow of Kuiper Belt object

Peter X
Coat

MU Year Party*

"At least until January 1st 2019, when New Horizons arrives at 2014 MU69."

Awww... it'll just miss the MU69 New Year celebrations, which according to Trip Adviser, are out of this wor... not to be missed.

* apologies for the pun

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Bonkers call to boycott Raspberry Pi Foundation over 'gay agenda'

Peter X

Wind up

Someone should tell him that internally all the 1's are 0's and the 0's are 1's. Bet that'd really annoy him! :D

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Shock: NASA denies secret child sex slave cannibal colony on Mars

Peter X

Ark B

Can someone just build "Ark B" now please? And send Robert David Steele a ticket... make him "Captain" if it helps!!

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Ex-MI5 boss: People ask, why didn't you follow all these people ... on your radar?

Peter X

Re: Not the Internet?

@LeahroyNake

I don't believe the printer includes the date, time or location.

Apparently, these days, they do... :-O (as well as serial no.)

slashdot.org (how a few yellow dots burned the intercepts nsa leaker)

I've linked slashdot simply because there's a bunch of links to useful articles from there.

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Wannacry: Everything you still need to know because there were so many unanswered Qs

Peter X

It's possible the eejit probing, wasn't actually probing themselves*, but had been owned by malware and that was doing the probing.

* Nope. Stop that.

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Why Microsoft's Windows game plan makes us WannaCry

Peter X

Re: Hang on a minute... @Ledswinger

From a management/planning perspective, pulling support without having some sort of migration plan was always going to end in disaster. If I was being kind, I'd say that Mr. Hunt at least got part way there in that he recognised that spending a shit-ton of money on support was a waste and needed to be solved... but simply pulling support? Nope, unquestionably, that was a bad idea.

I'll go along with your opinion of MS however! :D

Really, the bigger problem with all government IT is that there is no long-term plan. They've put themselves in a position where they're using an OS with a single supplier who, essentially, have them over a barrel.

So I'm another one voting for Linux. But not so much because of any technical superiority versus Windows, but more because of the Free as in Freedom aspect... if UK.GOV sourced their own standard Linux (think of what Goobuntu is to Ubuntu), then they can pay any IT support outfit to manage it. Maybe a UK based one for example?

Also... this isn't just the NHS is it? Aren't UK police using lots of WinXP too?

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Curiosity Rover's drill is ill. But chill: we can dig Martian sand instead of rocking hard

Peter X

Re: Ingenuity at work

Curiosity's twin Maggie. (https://www.reddit.com/r/space/comments/51m2b4/meet_maggie_the_earthbased_copy_of_the_curiosity/?st=j2bu8dtu&sh=81b405b4)

Should we worry that the " L-A-B T-E-C-H-N-I-C-I-A-N " * is _completely_ naked from the waist down? Because, quite frankly, that sort of behaviour is filthy!!

* (big air-quotes, and pronounced loud and slow for full comedic effect)

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'A-Team'-style tactics: Legit tool welded to kitchen sink to make off-the-shelf snoop kit

Peter X
Joke

Forensic evidence

...particularly the fact that it is assembled out of publicly available tools leave no forensic evidence...

It's a French car in the picture though - and there can't be many episodes where the team modify a Renault. Maybe they should start with that evidence?

Or have I misunderstood the entire article?*

*It's a Friday - I'm allowed to start early! :D

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Farewell Unity, you challenged desktop Linux. Oh well, here's Ubuntu 17.04

Peter X

Re "Files" speed

Ubuntu 16.04 running on a Core i5 with nVidia graphics vs. Raspberry Pi 3 with Raspbian/Pixel: I find the file manager on the Pi (PCmanFM) to be much snappier than Files on the Core i5.

I appreciate that there's less thumbnailing enabled by default on Raspbian, but even so, I struggle to understand how Files manages to be sooooooooooo slow!

As for Ubuntu/Unity, I've stuck with Unity thus far because, it's good enough. I like some Canonical stuff, like all the polish with colours/icons/fonts, but it's always disappointing how many bugs there are... it always feels like Canonical don't dog-food the LTS releases, so they get pushed out but the user has a ton of work to do to make them usable. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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Linux remote root bug menace: Make sure your servers, PCs, gizmos, Android kit are patched

Peter X

Red Hat

So how did Red Hat manage to completely avoid this?

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Microsoft's in-store Android looks desperate but can Google stop it?

Peter X

Sympathy for The Beast?

Whilst I'm certain I should want greater competition in the mobile-OS world, I'm really struggling to care about MS at all.

Didn't they try to have an alternative Android stack to the Google stuff at one point? Didn't they have a good map application?

Anyway, this whole loading software at retail thing clearly won't scale, so has considerably less chance of working than Windows-phone did... by MS surely know this. So are they trying to provoke Google into doing something that help MS (and others) launch a legal attack?

*Need a popcorn icon for this post!

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Reg now behind invisible HTML5 Bitcoin paywall

Peter X

My Eyes!

Genuinely, opened the article but was also naffing around with a music player... so brain not fully engaged... looked at the article and thought my eyes were going a bit funny!

As for bit-mining... yeah, great idea, except - and I think I speak for the majority of readers here - "We're all browsing using modified commodore-64s! So, the mining operation might take... some time"!

1
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Samsung plans Galaxy Note 7 fire sale

Peter X
Happy

Sitting on them?

Samsung's not disclosed how many Note 7's it's sitting on

Now that's bravery!

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Astroboffins stunned by biggest brown dwarf ever seen – just a hop and a skip away (750 ly)

Peter X
Happy

Party!

It was previously classified as an M-type star, but the paper has boosted it to an L‑type star, after discovering it had lower metallicity levels and a dimmer surface than expected.

Just imagine the parties the beings of SDSS J010448.46+153501.8 are having right now (or in 750 years when they get the news)!

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Airplane bomb fears spark America's laptop, tablet carry-on ban

Peter X

Re: Exactly...

Not that I'm affected by this but it makes you wonder how long before it spreads.

.. and the answer is: NOT LONG AT ALL!

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Peter X

Re: or stowed in the hold

where it can be lost, dropped, kicked around, stolen, found, thrown around a bit more

This bit was my immediate concern; when that lady's headphones exploded on a recent flight, I believe an article that covered it, mentioned another incident where a device's battery was crushed/punctured by - if my memory serves correctly - a seat mechanism being moved.

Regardless the cause, surely if people have to stuff these devices into baggage... particularly this week, when they might only be made aware of this requirement whilst in the airport, there's surely a *GREATER* risk that the batteries in these devices may be crushed/punctured, and potentially result in a fire/smoke related air crash?

If they *really* cared, if they *really* had intel. suggesting these devices could be disgused as a bomb or hacked/modified into a bomb, then surely the sensible thing to do is not allow any electronic device on board and *only* allow things such as USB flash drives/SD-cards to people to transfer data... albeit, I suppose you could argue they could use the internet for that!

This all smells like a Trump Theatre Production to me. Statistically, at least one plane will crash somewhere this year, and my money is on Trump tweeting some absolute BS about it immediately after, proving once again (to his supporters), what a great** president he is.

** (leans closer to the mike)... NOPE.

8
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'Password rules are bullsh*t!' Stackoverflow Jeff's rage overflows

Peter X

Re: Even the big companies fail at this

Oh, and let's not forget the Apple GUI dialogs for unlocking encrypted hard disks images, which you can't paste into.

Also, when you paste into a password field (where you can, e.g. in a browser), why doesn't it clear the clipboard for you? I hate when I know I've got a password on my clipboard... it's like... this OCD thing where I feel like I need to wash my hands immediately.

Paste password... immediately find something innocuous to copy onto clipboard to clear it!

8
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The Psion returns! Meet Gemini, the 21st century pocket computer

Peter X

Re: OS

If it could run something Debian based, e.g. like Raspbian is, then that would... absolutely perfect actually. This _could_ be a seriously brilliant device!

I guess the problem is that an OS like Android is easier to sell to most consumers.

Would it be viable for them to ship with Android, but provide a community supported Debian based distro? As long as it looks like they're (Planet/Gemini/whatever-they're-called) committed to the linux distro and can provide drivers/documentation, then I'd be happy with that.

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Who do you want to be Who? VOTE for the BBC's next Time Lord

Peter X
Coat

James May?

It'd be hilarious - he'd be all "oh cock" and "you've gone and cocked it up - you cock" when ever the Tardis went wrong or his sonic screwdriver broke.

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Euro space agency's Galileo satellites stricken by mystery clock failures

Peter X

Re: "halt launches until the problem has been traced and cured"

There is no other way, since Humanity has lost the possibility of going up to fix the damn things ever since the Shuttle program was canned.

Ignoring that ESA never had a shuttle in the first place, could the Shuttle ever reach geo-stationary orbit?

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Seagate hauls out fat form factor throwback hard drive

Peter X

I was hoping for something a bit larger. (Fujistu Eagle spinning up)

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Donald Trump will take cybersecurity advice from, um, Rudy Giuliani

Peter X

Giuliani Security & Safety - runs Joomla!

Moments later, I try to check the home page and .... 503 Service Temporarily Unavailable.

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TV anchor says live on-air 'Alexa, order me a dollhouse' – guess what happens next

Peter X

Re: Blakes 7 and Microsoft

+1! I vote Chris King to write new Blakes 7 episodes!! :D

4
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Regular or premium? Intel pumps out Optane memory at CES

Peter X

Useful for?

Best case I can think of is for storing a DB transaction log. Any better ideas?

I did wonder with yesterdays Lenovo laptop article, how a laptop was a sensible place to put this right now (assuming it's price per GB will reduce over time). I'm guessing they're trying to sell to early adopters / CEOs / PHBs?

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MacBook killer? New Lenovo offering sexed up with XPoint booster

Peter X

Re: It's no good

Nobody at the BBC will want it unless it has an owl next to the function keys.

Now you've made me think of having a touch-bar(TM) app that shows the owl plus the ORANGE function keys. Almost makes a touch-bar a worth while thing! Almost.

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Peter X

Re: It's no good

Nobody will want it unless it has an apple on the back.

The Apple logo doesn't even glow on the latest MacBooks! :(

0
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If at first you don't succeed, send another Mars lander – this time a deep driller

Peter X

20 metres

20 metres.... so that's more than Schiaparelli drilled is it?

2
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MacBook Pro owners complain of short batt life – so Apple kills batt life clock in macOS

Peter X

Re: Command Option P R

... and if an NVRAM reset doesn't fix it, the comments will say you need to take it to Apple for a logic board (not mother-board! nope, logic board) replacement, but that's okay provided you have Apple care? Oh you don't? Well, that'll cost you more than a non-Apple branded laptop.

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Mirai variant turns TalkTalk routers into zombie botnet agents

Peter X
Devil

Dark Mesh

How long before such a thing exists... it seems like there are enough vulnerable wifi connected devices to make this technically possible? And at that point, aren't TalkTalk, etc all guilty of subverting the governments attempt to monitor all communications? Dido could be facing terrorism charges!! ;)

But more realistically, if you _were_ a would be terrorist, wouldn't you make sure you had TalkTalk provided internet & router in order to have plausible deniability if you ever got questioned over visiting (say) beheading/bomb-making websites?

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Hull surfers cut off by router attack

Peter X

I'm sure I read a recent story on here about certain models of ZyXel being wide open to attacks due to an internet facing open management port which was meant to be locked down to certain IPs, but was left open to everyone and his dog.

TalkTalk and the Post Office apparently. Hard to believe a company as diligent as TT got hit though... they'll have to deploy Dido to allay fears!

Actually, the linked BBC article mentions that the Post Office have/are deploying router updates and requesting customers to reboot their routers to install the update. So that's something.

1
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Chernobyl cover-up: Giant shield rolled over nuclear reactor remains

Peter X

You could fill a indoor stadium full of chain smokers on 200 a day and say look how many there are here!

Ahhh... the Smoking Olympics. Whatever happened to that?

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British banks chuck smartphone apps out of Windows

Peter X

Six people...

Prolly less though because you're assuming that people with a Lloyds account *and* a Windows phone all choose to bank online with their phone. I have an Android but I don't use that for online banking; I prefer something with a keyboard for that kind of thing.

So I'm going to go with FOUR people... tops!

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Peter X

Re: "U" in "Universal Windows Platform" actually stand for?

plays-for-sUre?

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We're going to have to start making changes or the adults will do it for us

Peter X

Re: I'm afraid to tell you that....

Peter X points at IsJustabloke and declares: "He's a non-believer. Make him use Notepad.exe for all eternity!!!"

Also... it's tabs btw! :D

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Peter X

Re: TAB treachery

Reading the article I was thinking, "yeah, but now I'm older I'm much more easy going about such things". But then you mentioned tailing spaces... and I don't know why but they *REALLY* irritate me.

These days my .vimrc contains this:

match ErrorMsg '\s\+$'

to highlight trailing white-space, and all is good with the world!

Rationally, I should not care about this. Yet I do. It's really strange and I'm fairly sure no one outside of IT could possibly understand this.

4
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Hitler's wife's lovely lilac knickers fetch £2,900 at auction

Peter X

I bet Trump bought them so he can wear them at his inauguration.

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What should the Red Arrows' new aircraft be?

Peter X

Re: No F35 in the list?

Formation flying would require a software update.

Plus another for each colour of smoke!

3
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New MacBook Pro beckons fanbois to become strip pokers

Peter X

Re: Esc

By far the bigger dealbreaker is that the 13in MBP with Touch Bar is £1749.

And still not having a proper UK keyboard layout! (I'm assuming they haven't fixed that yet)

4
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Donald Trump running insecure email servers

Peter X

Re: So...

It's not directly comparable to the Hillary thing, but then again, if you're going to run for president and try to give your adversary a hard time over her email indiscretions, then probably the thing you really really want to not screw up on, is your own email set up.

As we all know here, running out of support software is really not best practice, and is inexcusable if that software is internet connected.

5
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Audit sees VeraCrypt kill critical password recovery, cipher flaws

Peter X

Vera vs True

One thing that has caused me not to use VC yet is that it will no longer create TrueCrypt containers; according to Wikipedia that's because "The VeraCrypt development team believes that the old TrueCrypt format is too vulnerable to an NSA attack and thus it must be abandoned."

Which is fine... but up until now I've not been inclined to switch.

Also, it's source repo is on CodePlex... and that place always has a funny smell to it!

So is it time to switch or should I wait another year to so before thinking about it?

1
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New GCHQ unit: Psst, breached biz bods. We won't rat you out to the ICO

Peter X
Alien

Re: Far off the topic, but I had to..

I noticed that too. Can't believe it's accidental though. But, WHAT DOES IT MEAN?!!!

2
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Smell burning? Samsung’s 'Death Note 7' could still cause a contagion

Peter X
Mushroom

Samsung PR need to think outside the box

Samsung PR need to think outside the box; my suggestion, given that one of the "features" of the Note 7 was being water resistant is... A BUCKET. If every owner gets a bucket of water to carry their phone in, then surely that would minimise the fire risk?

2
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Police raid India call centre, detain 500 in fraud probe

Peter X

Re: 500 seats...

I don't feel entirely sorry for them because they must've realised this wasn't a legit call-centre gig. But at the same time, I doubt they made much money at it.

Even if we assumed the the revenue was split equally, 125K into 500 = £250 per day. A good rate for a call-centre job and I imagine especially so in India, except....

Elsewhere I read that the call centre got 70% of the revenue and parties in the US supplying the data got 30%. And there's no way the people on the phone were making the bulk of the money anyway... so... probably not worth risking being at the wrong end of a fraud probe for that really.

0
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Panasonic wants you to wear Li-Ion batteries. The ones that explode

Peter X

Re: PCMCIA

I have an ancient, but still working, Packard Bell laptop with a still functioning Netgear PCMCIA Wifi card. All completely useless now of course!

I seem to recall my Amiga 1200 had a PCMCIA slot on it. No idea if there were any peripherals that used it... I'm guess that must have been one of the earliest devices to sport such a port?

1
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Matt LeBlanc handed £1.5m to front next two series of Top Gear

Peter X

EJ

I don't mind EJ on F1 because he does at least know the business and is happy to ask rich, important people awkward questions. But I wouldn't have bothered with him for Top Gear... there's just no point in him. I'm not even sure if he's really that into cars - in a petrol-head way?

Rory Reid was better than I had expected and I think he improved with each Extra Gear and you need his character to help with Chris Harris's dryness.

I hope they put the Reasonably-Priced-Car track back to how it was before. The changes they made were stoopid. I'm also not 100% convinced that having two stars to interview/race was a good idea either.

10
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Legend of Zelda cracked with 6502 assembly language glitch

Peter X
Happy

This is fantastic!

Fantastic this is!

Was discovered by (a). reverse engineering the entire code base by hand, (b). noticing an occasional crash in the graveyard and wondering why, or (c). something completely different?

I'd imagine (a). Very impressive whatever the reason though!!

3
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Inside our three-month effort to attend Apple's iPhone 7 launch party

Peter X
Mushroom

This is the wrong thing to do, but I'd be tempted

I'd be inclined to report fully on Apples competitor phones and make direct comparisons. But (and here's why it's wrong), *always* get the technical specs of the Apple product wrong. Heh... just for laughs.

*If* you did that, would Apple PR be forced to contact you? Just, you know, out of interest. Because that could be really fun!

4
1

Hollywood offers Daniel Craig $150m to (slash wrists) play James Bond

Peter X

Mark Heap

^ Just thought of this one and had to add him! So maybe re-cast Toby Jones as Q? Pretty sure Broadbent can play any role... so we'll have to hang on to him to.

I'm thinking Mark Heap should play his bond very much as he played "Jim" (as in, Jim. Jim from next door) in Fright Night Dinner. Maybe if Wilson the dog can be in it, all the better.

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