* Posts by Antti Roppola

90 posts • joined 16 Apr 2007


Apple in 873-page legal claim to word 'Pod'

Antti Roppola

floating Jobs

Will Steve sue citing confusing similarity about the Jobs floating in my loo?

Linus Torvalds outs himself as US citizen

Antti Roppola

@grumpy - on negativity

I wouldn't quite go so far as to suggest Linus "escaped" Finland, it's actually quite a nice democratic country that Newsweek recently rated as the best country in the whole world. But, the USA has indeed been good to Linus and it is appropriate he returns some of that love.

I also think people get a bit overboard with negativity about the USA. It's not like millions of people live in famine or get kidnapped from their homes or disappear without a trace or get stoned for revealing their face in public or get exploded on account of which village they came from. Like it or not, it's pretty much as good as it gets.

Yahoo! search Bingified in US and Canada

Antti Roppola

So just what is it that Yahoo does now?

So Yahoo is just a fancy stylesheet on top of Bing, Hotmail and MS Virtual Earth?

That or it sure is looking a lot like Geocities.

UK.gov sticks to IE 6 cos it's more 'cost effective', innit

Antti Roppola

Train wrecks

Cut some slack here. A big organisation is not like upgrading your home PC. I've had enough fun with unexpected circular dependencies to understand why they might be so cautious. HM Customs? You can expect a cock-up there to have potentially serious real world impacts; "Sorry, but your consignment of live lobsters was overlooked because a CSS bug meant it appeared under the HM Customs crest in our workflow system".

Of course, the longer you leave it between versions, the bigger the wrench is eventually. It's also a royal PITA that you have to engage in all sorts of hacks to run more than one version of IE on a PC as it's grafted onto the OS at the hip. It all becomes a bit like treading water actually

Grenade? Genuine MS replacement parts.

Battle joined for future of open source IPS

Antti Roppola

Threads and performance - polishing the digestive byproduct?

There's been a few high profile debates about whether threads are the answer. If the Snort folks consider a threaded solution as flawed from the outset, I can see why they'd see it as a fruitless diversion of effort.

Apple ad-addled OS scheme resurfaces

Antti Roppola


In 1997 no less:



"At VaporSystems, we have a different philosophy; VäporOS will be entirely advertiser-driven "

I wonder if satire qualifies as prior art?

Zuckerberg admits working for man claiming Facebook ownership

Antti Roppola
Black Helicopters

The only one?

So what if this was a standard teaser on al the contracting gigs he did? I can see scores of employers furiously rummaging through old files to see if they've also got a golden ticket to the (other) chocolate factory. The there's the prospect of these scores of employers lining up to claim their own 84% of Facebook.

That's not a gravy splotch in the shape of a helicopter, it's Mark's signature.

Google versus Facebook: stop your photocopiers

Antti Roppola

The permanent PC

I would say that anything stored in the Chocolate Factory's bunker is a darn sight safer than something stored with all the torjans on Aunty Mabel's PC.

And you won't need a permanent web connection. You web browser will cache code and content and sync it to a server farm somewhere next time you wander by an access point.

The outcome is by no means a given, but the technology is indeed capable.

Finn finishes Finnish mini-digger odyssey

Antti Roppola

What price tradtion?

Once upon a time, no Finn would have contemplated such a tractor journey in anything but a Zetor (or maybe a Massey Ferguson if they were posh). Sure, the Chinese mini digger may have caterpillar tracks and a comfortable weatherproof enclosed canopy, but that's not the same thiing as feeling the icy wind blowing through your Karvalakki (fur cap). Now that would be Sisu.

'Toothed' condom hits rapists where it hurts

Antti Roppola


YT had one in Neal Stephenson's Snowcrash back in 1992.

I still like the idea of tattooing "Poor Impulse Control" on people's foreheads.

Linux IRC server leaves backdoor open

Antti Roppola

The tools are there

This is an issue for all OSs. Most (all?) package managers already support signing, but if you grab a tarball or zip file and run the contents that isn't going to help you on any OS. Driving a safely designed car doesn't mean you are immune to acts of stupidity.

If you admin the system it is assumed you know what you are doing. But greater use of UAC/SElinux to manage roles and more obvious enforcement of package signing would make it a bit harder for the clueless to injure themselves by installing software from random 3rd parties.

Microsoft closes door on 64-bit development for Office 2011

Antti Roppola

64 bit office apps? Who needs them?

There's not really a lot you need a 64 bit word processor for anyway. I cannot think of too many sane Office applications that would get major benefit from 64 bits. Anyone who wants to put more than 65,000 rows in their spreadhseet needs something else (and that something else is not software).

64 bits in the underlying OS is worth having. All those pesky movie files and MP3 collections need huge filesystems and benefitt from big memory. x86_64 has pretty much removed the need to start from scratch and the move should be far less traumatic than the 16-32 bit move.

@yossarianuk should go find what Dave Haynie had to say atthe time about the rising cost of chip fabs, you need deep pockets to do your own chipsets and the tide was surely against C=.

Another suicide at Apple's Chinese supplier

Antti Roppola

Everyone's sweatshop

While the pressure of dealing with high profile products may be a factor in the previous suicide, Foxconn is not just an Apple supplier. If you look at any nearly any mobo, you'll see the Foxconn components all over it.

Free mobe map app 'shut down by' Nokia

Antti Roppola

OSM and access to data

While OSM continues to improve, state and private products with a defined update schedules are still going to be the first preference for these sorts of businesses. Due dilligence and all that. No-one's going to hurry to be the first vendor out on the OSM limb.

NavTeq are indeed over a barrel, it's quite possible that the other datasets available aren't as good (data quality or terms). I suppose the lesson is that whoever owns the foundations gets to control the market. It's not all that different to building stuff for MS Windows, if MS decide your product is a threat you will get squished. As Kenny says, "You gotta know when to walk away..."

Facebook plans PHP changes

Antti Roppola

Yahoo! PHP optimisation

So it sounds a lot like Yahoo's PHP project where they moved a bunch of Yahoo to PHP and developed a runtime that was optimised for speed. Interesting that Rasmus Lerdorf left Yahoo in November.

Google mystery server runs 13% of active websites

Antti Roppola

Personal computers

@John Smith 19

Because personal computers are professionally managed and completely reliable, rarely losing user data?

Aussie man convicted for Simpsons smut

Antti Roppola

Legal troll?

It is quite possible that the legal system is using this as an opportunity to promote discussion about these new laws as passed by Parliament. Nothing like fastidious interpretation leading to a controversial conviction to focus attention. Keep in mind that what is said about a bill in Hansard can be used in the interpretation of that bill.

Microsoft opens Windows 7 to advertisers

Antti Roppola

Väpor OS

Not an original bone in that company's closet. This was all well understood way back in 1997. VäporOS proposed to sell UI elements to sponsors. Someone should have told Steve it was a joke and not to be taken seriously!


Hmmm.... Maybe I should start reading The Onion to get a feel for Windows 8?

Visual Studio gets Linux dose with Mono

Antti Roppola

Party like it's 1999

Mono lags behind C# as it is an after-the-fact reimplementation. There are still no plans to support .Net 3.0 in Mono. Maybe that's not important. I can't help think that Mono will never particpate on anything approaching an equal footing, and products like this will divert effort from more certain avenues. It's a great achievement, but even after all this time the project is leading people down what a appears to be a dark and shadowy alley.

World's first iPhone worm Rickrolls angry fanbois

Antti Roppola

Ear worm

So I guess this means Rick Astley is officially an Ohrwurm (earworn).

Apple sexes up Time Capsule

Antti Roppola


This isn't the first time. I once fixed a dead airport base station. There were bulging caps around the voltage controller. Out of curiousity, I looked at the controller's datasheet and the recommended caps were quite a bit bigger. It worked a treat with the recommended caps, though I wasn't able to put the lid back on and had to drill holes in the RF shield to let the bigger caps poke through.

Facebook turns users into web translation engine

Antti Roppola

United Nations

Can we take a sweeps on the first legal dispute that arises because someone was too cheap to stump up for a qualified translator and got a teeming hoard of FB LOLT33nz to vote on the translation of that vital legal document? That or they just don't realise there's a difference between a teeming hoard of FB LOLT33nz and a qualified translator.

Aussie woman's toilet trauma prompts lav-overhaul call

Antti Roppola
IT Angle

Extreme dunny design

I once stayed at a hotel where the loo was so small you had to climb ont othe lid to close the door behind you. Any smaller and they would have needed a notch cut in the door to clear the edges of the bowl.

We could make this an IT story by mandating all Aussie loos are fitted with a Twitter feed to

http://www.toiletmap.gov.au/ and AMSA's search & rescue facilities. Roll on the paperless loo?

Pirate Bay users go overboard as new owners dangle cash

Antti Roppola

The Good Ship TPB

Captain Bartolomew Roberts would routinely jump to a new ship when the old one became rotten and leaky. I'm guessing this might be a good way of clouding any settlements while the PiratByran moves onto something else.

Whatever it is, you can be sure it'll be just as much of a circus and hopefully just as entertaining.

That they actually got paid for TPB is probably a bonus, I wonder WTF the purchasor is actually thinking.

Steve Jobs had liver transplant

Antti Roppola

All the Personality Cults

Bill, Larry and Steve. No doubt there's more.

Large companies are supposed to plod along no matter who is at the helm. But if you can trust one person, that large company can also turn on a dime. The tradeoff for this agility is resilience, hence all the effort to set up Cooks and Ballmers.

Blubber-wrapped Linux kernel 2.6.30 hits the decks

Antti Roppola

Kernel versioning

There was quite a good interview with Linus some time ago on versioning. I recall that there just wasn't the need to keep odd number development forks, things are pretty modular and have been really robust. Much of the work that used to happen in the odd series appears to be happening in patch sets, you can build 2.6.30 and decide to pull in the bleeding edge patches from your favourite maintainer for just the bits that you want to be bleeding edge.

AT&T jettisons the last of its Usenet

Antti Roppola

Enclosure of the Commons

It's a real pity. Much of the valuable discussion on UseNet has moved to web forums. You don't miss posts, the interface is slicker and there's a landlord to deal with bad citizens, but it's ultimately made us digital sharecroppers.

No-one's going to be interested in fixing UseNet any time soon or creating a modern equivalent. The flood of binaries groups was the beginning of the end, making it harder and harder for my ISP at the time to keep a reasonable volume of discussion.

Microsoft Bing rehosts Wikifiddling as 'Reference' material

Antti Roppola

Sirius Cybernetics Corporation

Pish-tosh! This is a unique opportunity for you to edit the Wikipedia entry for Microsoft's marketing division to describe them as "a bunch of mindless jerks who'll be first against the wall when the revolution comes".

It's OK, I have peril sensitive sunglasses.

Google Oz coders crossbreed email with IM

Antti Roppola


@Solomon Grundy

"I couldn't find anything in the beta that a properly configured Exchange Server won't do"

Except me and my friends do not happen to share access to a properly configured Exchange Server. Wave is presumably accessible to all Look at Facebook, people will give up their private details in a snap if it provides utility.

Worldwide GPS may die in 2010, say US gov

Antti Roppola

Bacon and Eggs

I wouldn't cancel that geo-tagged camping trip just yet.

you can be pretty sure that some of the more committed stakeholders will make sure enough satellites are launched. At all costs is probably acceptable when compared to the risk of aerospace hardware landing in the wrong locations.

Win 7 RC fails to thwart well-known hacker risk

Antti Roppola

Magic and permissions

@Greg this is indeed a fundamental shortfall. The method works by fingerprinting characteristics of particular file types, is called "Magic" and is an open standard, I can only guess that the issue is "not invented here" and backwards (in this case very backwards) compatibility.

With magic and permissions, users would have to go out of their way to run a disguised executable. They can also call their files whatever they like.

Web 0.2 archivists save Geocities from deletion

Antti Roppola

Efficiency and history

This might have been a great loss, but fortunately MySpace has used Web 2.0 technologies to greatly improve the speed at which visually appalling web pages may be created.

More seriously, I do think Geocities is worth some preservation effort as one of the more accessible hosting providers that encouraged the DIY Internet. More than once I have directed people to Notepad and Geocities as a zero cost pathway to the world of web, especially for folk who have information worth sharing.

Facebook in Pirate Bay block Fail

Antti Roppola


This news will no doubt encourage hoards of Facebook users to go look at Pirate Bay and see what they've been missing out on.

‘Wikipedia killer’ pilfers blogosphere, taunts bloggers

Antti Roppola
Black Helicopters

Who's the Fool?

You have got to get worried about the industry when you can't easily tell this year's DotCom antics from this year's April Fools jokes.

Apple routs rivals in sat survey

Antti Roppola
Paris Hilton

Engineering, Design & Standards

Jobs (and I hope others in Apple) understand that good design and engineering gives good products. I bought a Mac laptop 12 months ago and it just works. It reminds me of the Sun workstations I used to have on my desk. Controlling the hardware and OS gives a smaller, managed target to hit.

Anything using Windows is at an immediate disadvantage. The OS needs to run on a much wider range of gear and there's far less control over the OS. Vista's backward steps in usability (seriously, *three* seperate actions to run something as super user?) and random and changeable OS style guide don't help either.

With stronger style guides, MS could very quickly narrow the satsfaction gap. Without Steve like vision at the helm, Apple could quickly end up back in the wilderness.

Paris because you need substance under the style.

World goes mad as Bill and Jerry eat churros

Antti Roppola

Non elitist

Yes, as per the comment Francis made. This is the first in a series of ads to show that Windows is what you should use if you want to relate with other ordinary computer using people rather than smug and superior geeks that scare you. I would not be assuming that Bill is on a dud just yet...

Google unfurls less laughable Wikipedia

Antti Roppola

Meta-idiot rating

I had always considered the basic indivisible unit of intelligence to be the Iota, the amount of intellect to operate a light switch. Say it takes 15 Iotas to tie your show laces at 1 kI to program a VCR. Lost opportunity for Google here.

But Knol is an improvement in that the star rating will tell us how many idiots are in the fan base of an idiotic author. After all, isn't popularity what good writing is all about? Considering the authors and topics, maybe they could have stools instead of stars and handle both issues at once? I'll have to inveestigate Knol more before I form an opinion.

No icon because The register doesn't have a stool icon.

Linux-guru's conviction fuels ReiserFS debate

Antti Roppola

US legal system

For once, Slashdot had some good commentary on the case. The system provides a reasonable chance for an innocent Hans to go to jail for being a intolerant, elitist nerdy freak dude that weirds out the jury. We wouldn't have heard about it if he was some unknown black guy.

We stopped using ReiserFS ages ago as it was already niche then and ext3 did a bunch of stuff in a far safer way. Try finding recovery tools for ReiserFS. For a long time, the advice has been to ext3 unless you know why you want to use something else.

Commodore goes titsup (again)

Antti Roppola

Flogging the shambling zombie corpse

There is nothing left of Commodore other than the C= logo. None of the wonderful and exciting things that made Commodore interesting remain. This is like watching someone saddle up the decayed remains of Trigger, suspend it from strings and pretend there's still a spark of life in the ol' hoss. All it really does is highight just how long the horse has been dead.

Inside Amazon's web services

Antti Roppola

Austria, Australia (another back end rant)

While it may not be a web issue, I do think regularly mailing items to Austria instead of Australia suggests they should put a similar level attention on their physical processes. OK, the names are similar looking. But Amazon apparently have a high quality SoA that can tell the difference and should be able to prevent silly mistakes like sending my books to the wrong continent.


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