* Posts by Steve Evans

2677 posts • joined 17 Apr 2007

Then there were four: Another draft US law on 'foreign' (aka domestic) mass spying emerges

Steve Evans

We will not spy on American citizens...

(We'll get some other government to do that from their taps, and then they'll just send it over).

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Stop your moaning, says maker of buggy Bluetooth sex toy

Steve Evans

Cheat!

That's a pretty lame way of winning at pool...

Wish I'd thought it it!

On second thoughts, I doubt I'd be able (or want) to be able to convince many of my normal pool friends (male) to "just put this up somewhere"!!!

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will.i.am's tech tat biz is going enterprise, snags $117m from Salesforce

Steve Evans

Re: "your imagination's the limit"

Well he imagined he could sing once...

And low and behold, the autotuner almost managed it!

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BT hikes prices for third time in 18 months

Steve Evans

They didn't offer me a speedboost (already going as fast as the FTTC can manage), they just offered me some more of their cloud storage (of which I have used 0 bytes)... Yeah... Right... That's about as tempting to me as being trapped with a @btinternet.com email address.

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Google's phone woes: The Pixel and the damage done

Steve Evans

@A/C re: Nokia 8

I actually handled a Nokia 8 the other day... Almost dropped it, and that was whilst being careful looking at a friend's new phone... Damn those things are slippery.

I foresee a good market in replacements screens for those things.

As for Nokia's original reputation (pre-Elop), the hardware was generally ok, but this was just at the beginning of the OTA patching era, and Nokia were playing catch-up, so a lot of phones got shipped with "beta" software, with the intention to fix them with updates over the air. Unfortunately once the carriers got involved, did their spin on the firmware, sold the phones, that was that... They never bothered spinning their bits onto updates Nokia issued and the phones were locked to that specific carriers firmware fork. The result that many owners were left with the "beta".

For example, the N95 actually got very good with later versions of firmware. Not that anyone in the UK would have ever noticed, unless they'd jump through all the hoops to change the model number of theirs to generic EU model, and then manually done their own update.

Then there was the after sales support, and the Nokia support forum... I got moderated for disrespecting the company once... I pointed out that if they continued with that level of support, customers were going to go elsewhere, and the support droid who moderated me would be out of a job. I tried to not to smile 9 months later when Elop arrived...

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No, the FCC can't shut down TV stations just because Donald Trump is mad at the news

Steve Evans

Re: Ein Trump, Ein reich...

I wonder if he's thought of writing a book?

Mein Trumpf.

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WPA2 KRACK attack smacks Wi-Fi security: Fundamental crypto crapto

Steve Evans

Re: Security is dead, long live security

Blimee... You're not sceptical enough to be in here!

"I guess most devices will be patched to fix this within a year"

Noooo... Most manufacturers will use this as an excuse to push a new model out within the month!

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Shhh! There's a new BlackBerry and... no, we've said too much

Steve Evans

Unfortunately the integrated messaging of the Blackberry Hub seems to be a huge must-have for many trying to move on from their aging Blackberrys, something that even BB have failed to replicate properly on their Android offerings.

For those people, anything new is going to be a very painful experience.

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Footie ballsup: Petition kicks off to fix 'geometrically impossible' street signs

Steve Evans

Re: Metric please

Don't be silly.

A Metre is perfectly well defined in day-to-day terms. It's the distance travelled by light in a vacuum in 1/299792458 seconds.

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Google touts Babel Fish-esque in-ear real-time translators. And the usual computer stuff

Steve Evans

Re: Sometimes I wonder...

I have broken one screen though...

Well actually, I didn't break it... My brother did... With the wheel of his Landrover as he drove over it after it had slipped out of my pocket as he dropped me off.

But that was way back in the day, and it was a nokia, so it still worked, I just couldn't see anything.

IIRC the replacement screen cost me less than the beer and curry I had after he had dropped me off.

I did kill a Thinkpad keyboard with a pint of beer once.

Ah... The Thinkpad... I wonder if the new one has the under keyboard liquid catcher and gutter drainage system. Not many laptops would bathe in a whole pint of beer and only require a £30 keyboard.

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Steve Evans

Sometimes I wonder...

I must be the only person left on the planet who hasn't dropped his phone in the sea or peed on it and flushed it...

I do worry about the population of this planet sometimes.

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Is that a bulge in your pocket or... do you have an iPhone 8+? Apple's batteries look swell

Steve Evans

Re: It's a feature

No more melting glue or attacking tamper-resistant screws. The phone opens itself when it needs a new battery.

Has anyone checked to see if they've applied for a patent on that?

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Lenovo spits out retro ThinkPads for iconic laptop's 25th birthday

Steve Evans

No Thinklight?!

*wails*

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Essentially invisible: Android big-daddy Andy Rubin's hypetastic mobe 'flops in first month'

Steve Evans

Re: Shame it's not available here

About three hundred quid in change?

Well said!

I hadn't even got as far as finding it was impossible to buy in the UK, it had looked interesting right up until I saw the price, and at that was the end of my interest.

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EasyJet: We'll have electric airliners within the next decade

Steve Evans

They're gonna need a bit more than a fast charge to even get close to the usual 30-40 minute turn round they like to perform...

Unless QueezyJet are happy with only one flight a day for each plane!

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Bill Gates says he'd do CTRL-ALT-DEL with one key if given the chance to go back through time

Steve Evans

I think I'd rather have an OS/Software which didn't require a special key, or key combo for "OIY! PAY ATTENTION TO ME! YOU'VE GONE WRONG AGAIN!"

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Five ways Apple can fix the iPhone, but won't

Steve Evans

Even stranger considering Apple’s biggest acquisition was Beats, and behind the scenes it consistently challenges the music industry supply chain to higher standards.

Sorry, you equate Beats with high quality?

They're a fashion brand, with an over-inflated price tag.

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Argentina eyes up laser death cannon testbed warship

Steve Evans

Re: "I doubt the RN has the reliable operating capability...."

"I'm also fairly sure the Argentines aren't quite a gung-ho as the Junta was back then."

It all depends what their current leader needs to distract people from.

That always seems to be the way down there. Got crippling financial problems, huge unemployment, easy, get the natives worked up about a little island.

Rumours flying about corruption, fear that you're going to be caught for lining your own nest? Quick, stir up the natives again about a little island.

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UK not as keen on mobile wallets as mainland Europe and US

Steve Evans

Maybe if some UK banks would actually wake up and smell the coffee, we could actually use their cards for our Google Wallets, instead of them living in a dream world where their own, single bank offering was actually relevant.

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It's happening! Official retro Thinkpad lappy spotted in the wild

Steve Evans

Oooh...

Non Chiclet keyboard - Yay!

Nipple - Yay!

I wonder if it has a thinklight?

Oh please have a thinklight... and a screen with a good colour gamut...

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Steve Evans

Re: Screw 16:10

I still miss my R52 and its 1400 x 1050... :'(

A laptop that was a convenient size, and still had great vertical resolution.

Sure, these days I have a 1920x1080, so even more vertical dots, but then I also have a load of excess horizontal dots with it, which make it much more cumbersome.

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Terry Pratchett's unfinished works flattened by steamroller

Steve Evans

Indeed.

It made me sad, and smile, both at the same time.

Although the PTerry was such a well known techie geek, I find it hard to believe he trusted his hard work to a single lump of spinning rust... and an IDE connected lump of spinning rust at that!

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EE!? The sound customers make when the interwebz don't work

Steve Evans

Given the bad PR a failed DNS can generate for a company, it amazes me they still continue to pretend to be more than a dumb pipe, and insist on providing their own servers.

I forget the number of times I have improved friend's internet just by pointing their machines (or router when permitted) to some proper DNS servers.

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Kill animals and destroy property before hurting humans, Germany tells future self-driving cars

Steve Evans

Re: Who Cares

I remember channel hopping whilst abroad, and discovering Knight Rider in German.

I couldn't really understand a word of it, but the original voice sounded positively butch and macho compared to the German dub!

An interior retrim in the style of a Laurence Llewelyn-Bowen boudoir would have completed it beautifully.

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Steve Evans

6. All robots must complain about being cleaned with a brillo pad, and express a preference for a car wash .

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Steve Evans

I think the El Reg standard units need updating.

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Steve Evans

Re: Who

Would a computer make the same life (or possibly death) decision facing the same situation? I doubt it. It will most likely attempt breaking and kill a person as a result.

In that instance, the computer guided system removing a death trap from the road, and converting the driver into a Darwin award contender, could be seen as progress!

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Can North Korean nukes hit US mainland? Maybe. But EMP blast threat is 'highly credible'

Steve Evans

Re: close only counts with hand grenades and thermonuclear devices

I wasn't expecting that.

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German court reveals reason for Europe-wide patent system freeze

Steve Evans

Re: Oh! the pretty patterns

I'm not even sure there was a 1000 lire note!

IIRC I've got a 1000 lire coin kicking round at home somewhere. It was worth £0.42p when I got it.

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75 years ago, one Allied radar techie changed the course of WW2

Steve Evans

Re: 22yr olds today

How about:

Robert Watson-Watt, widely regarded today as the father of a radar system that was actually useful for something more than casual amusement?

There are plenty of historical instances where someone has been about 5 seconds of thought away from a huge breakthrough, but then wandered off for a smoke/tea break.

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British snoops at GCHQ knew FBI was going to arrest Marcus Hutchins

Steve Evans

Re: It looks like they were quite desparate to pin something on him, judging by the last paragraph:

I wonder how many white collar criminals in the US are released on bail back to their house that already contains an entire gun cabinet?

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Vodafone customers moan about sluggish data abroad

Steve Evans

Re: Throttling exists

I find it hard to believe that there isn't some kind of traffic management at play at times.

When the network reaches capacity at peek times, and someone has got to lose out, who will a network provider in Spain have as its priority to keep happy? Their direct customer who pays them money every month, or some sunburnt and slightly drunk tourist who's never given them a penny and is going to clear of home in a week anyway?

Obviously when the network isn't at capacity there should be no need for any piggies to be more equal than others.

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Lauri Love and Gary McKinnon's lawyer, UK supporters rally around Marcus Hutchins

Steve Evans

Re: "98 per cent of people charged in America take a plea deal."

Land of the locked up more like... Look at the proportion of the population they have locked up!

To save you the trouble, 0.7%... Round about the same figure as they estimate for North Korea!

European countries generally come in below 0.15%

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HMS Queen Lizzie impugned by cheeky Scot's drone landing

Steve Evans

Re: If there's no crew on the ship to see the drone

It's not finished or commissioned yet, so no navy gunners to man the non fitted guns to defend the unavailable planes.

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Steve Evans

A threat?

"ISIS have a proven track record in Syria of weaponizing DJI's Phantom [drone] and its professional platform the Matrice 100 to drop grenades on troops, so a drone flying over the aircraft carrier without permission, as opposed to alongside, should be considered a potential threat,"

I apologise to Douglas Adams for this, but it has to be said/paraphrased...

Mr Dent, do you know how much damage the Aircraft carrier would suffer if you dropped a grenade on it?...

For the uninitiated, or those that suffered the more recent movie...

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You had ONE job: Italian firefighters suspected of starting blazes for cash

Steve Evans

Re: Not the first

I think the difference here is the scale.

Everywhere else it's one or two bad apples. In Italy it's an entire squad!

And they say it's the Germans who are organised! Pah!

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Steve Evans

Re: Obligatory prescient quote from Sir Pterry

I thought of that Futurama episode where Bender was accused of starting fires to claim medals.

Best go with a PTerry reference, Bender was innocent (for once!).

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Four techies flummoxed for hours by flickering 'E' on monitor

Steve Evans

I've seen some horrendous glitches caused on satellite feeds by cheap/knackered microwaves in the office kitchen.

We eventually moved the dish further down the wall (and away from the kitchen)... And since the requisition request for gonad shields was declined, we tend not to go into the kitchen if someone is using the microwave!

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Sorry, psycho bosses, it's not OK to keylog your employees

Steve Evans

Re: Play the game

It wasn't so much what he was sacked for than the way they discovered his "indiscretion" that caused this case.

If the boss had walked round the corner to talk to the programmer, and seen his desktop covered in game developing software, there wouldn't have been any problem... Misconduct, misuse of company equipment, don't let the door hit you on the way out.

Germany is big on personal privacy, for well known historical reasons. They get a bit jumpy when those above start looking at the behaviour of individuals too closely.

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'Real' people want govts to spy on them, argues UK Home Secretary

Steve Evans

Re: Rudd Discovers you can hide information in jpgs.

Well that's going to drop the interwebz bandwidth requirements more than successfully blocking spam!

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Steve Evans

I think a larger majority of the population would like their MP's communication open to inspection, not specifically excluded!

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BBC’s Micro:bit turns out to be an excellent drone hijacking tool

Steve Evans

Re: @TechnicalBen

Downvotes on here are an odd thing.

I just remember you can only please all of the people some of the time. That and some people are arses all of the time ;-)

You are of course correct. 99% of Pi projects are python scripts running under Linux. Which adds a whole load of code overhead. When it's a box on your desk this isn't really an issue, and does make a lot of things much easier.

However, if you're trying to build something self contained and with the longevity of an elephant instead of a mayfly, you need to lose a lot of dead wood.

If you're still measuring your power consumption in milliamps, you're not even in the same ball-park as what you can get up to with a proper low power device.

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Steve Evans

Re: @Steve Evans

Thank you Lysenko, my point exactly.

A Pi is overkill, and over consumption. Strip it down to what you actually need, and the power consumption drops along with it (who would have guessed eh?).

Result, *much* smaller toys of naughtiness.

/me doesn't dare mention what you can get up to with an ATtiny.

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Steve Evans

16Mhz ? I'd use a pi, only slightly larger, however, so much more ooompf.

That would depend on if you definition of a covert device permitted having a power cable dangling from it for a wall socket!

The baby board sips the electrons at a very gentle rate.

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It took DEF CON hackers minutes to pwn these US voting machines

Steve Evans

If e-voting is ever going to come to the UK, maybe we should start getting some practice in on the US systems...

Then when it happens, we can "vote" in a party with a clue.

Oh... Hang on... I see a problem.

D'oh!

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The opsec blunders that landed a Russian politician's fraudster son in the clink for 27 years

Steve Evans

Prisons are full of stupid criminals...

It's the ones the smart ones that are never caught you should worry about!

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BOFH: Oh go on. Strap me to your Hell Desk, PFY

Steve Evans

I though lesson 1 was always cut the BOFH in on some of the action.

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The Internet of Flying Thing: Reg man returns with explicit shots

Steve Evans

Re: "our wifi antenna"

That would actually be incorrect. That would be their satellite antenna.

The wifi antenna(s) would be inside the passenger compartment.

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Giffgaff 'roam like at home' package means £1/min calls in Jersey

Steve Evans

Re: Giffgaff was a MVNO in Jersey

Indeed... I used to visit Guernsey, Jersey and Isle of Man for work quite a few moons ago, and I didn't think twice, my phone just worked and charged as it did back home on the big neighbouring island (GB).

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UK ministers to push anti-encryption laws after election

Steve Evans

Re: Known to Authorities.

@Bernard M. Orwell

You forgot - Was mentioned several times to the anonymous tip line too!

Amber Rudd needs to quit the sound bites, she just ends up sounding like a feckin' idiot. As do most politicians the moment they step out of their comfort zone of 5 course meals and floating duck houses.

The UK is about to go it alone from Europe, and the last thing it needs is more companies jumping abroad because of enforced broken encryption schemes.

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