* Posts by gannett

27 posts • joined 31 Aug 2008

SPOILER alert, literally: Intel CPUs afflicted with simple data-spewing spec-exec vulnerability


Ouch !

Ban JavaScript, flash and other platforms that import code.

Trust nothing.

Air gap trusted and performance platforms.

Phished IT bod opens door to 40,000 finance folks' personal details


full disclosure and transparancy

And in the interests of full disclosure and transparancy not a mention on the website anywhere....


Web searching died the day they invented SEO


I partly blame the attitude/operation of Pinterest and similar sites. Content stolen from other sites and put behind sign-up wall. Original back references are lost to unacknowledged sources. Google then priorities the pinterest results losing the route to the original content.

A certain millennial turned 30 recently: Welcome to middle age, Microsoft Excel v2


Calendars suck for "people resource planning" in anything other than a trivial teamsize.

Can't control how many leave entries put in on a day,

Can't add up total leave days over a year,

Can't ensure that min levels of various skill levels within team. language, technology, etc.

No auditing of versions to see who changed what.

Excel can do all of that and push publish to HTML. We had a page a week 3 teams 50 people diary/resource plan that showed all the skill levels with green/amber/red highlighting.

Server retired after 18 years and ten months – beat that, readers!


Re: Thats nothing. Weve got one that 27yrs old.

Is that one of the VAXs converted to beer fridge ?



Sun Enterprise 220R - Managed 15 Years as external FTP server

We had a Sun Enterprise 220R - that ran as an External FTP server until recently. 150GB spread over 8 drives. Did have a few new bits along the way. IT ignored it for so long they lost the console connection for 18 months. Service manual still available here : https://docs.oracle.com/cd/E19088-01/220r.srvr/806-1081-10/806-1081-10.pdf

Software update turned my display and mouse upside-down, says user


Re: Every day's a school day

The notorious round "puc" mouse that Apple put out with G3s was an on going pain as it had no natural orientation in the hand. Oval and rectangular mouse at least have a natural n-s orientation. Round mice Fail

When we said don't link to the article, Google, we meant DON'T LINK TO THE ARTICLE!


Re: Not so easy...



Re: Ooh, goody, the Streisand effect.

Represented by Sue,Grabbit&Run.


Re: This will be tough...

Yes but only told in Germany (Munich). It's a bigger world now.

Yeah, if you could just stop writing those Y2K compliance reports, that would be great


COBOL has been a fossil since 1980 at least and that's over a working lifetime ago.

PC repair chap lets tech support scammer log on to his PC. His Linux PC


I just become my elderly Dad - none of the provided instructions work - I don't know what he means by xyzzy please explain more - jump into sounds control panel and just keep generating bleep, bongs and pings down the phone. Add in a few choice phrases like "This won't upset my internet banking will it ? " & Can I send you a cheque for helping me fix this ? - Rinse and repeat.

Apple fans, Android world scramble to patch Broadcom's nasty drive-by Wi-Fi security hole


Item of interest

I did wonder how "john" in Person of Interest took over phones just by being near them.

The developer died 14 years ago, here's a print out of his source code


Data is the life blood

If you have the data that's the key. You can at least move forward on a new system if you can import the old account data. No backups /live copies except ancient CDs - stuffed.

I recently replaced a 10+ year old small biz mailing list + mini CRM with a single Excel sheet. Once the data was extracted all 7500 records, a new system can handle that on a page. Finding a data extractor for Paradox.db was the value add provided.

Bad payers - sue/small claims court em - it's good for all of us in the long run.

Symantec sources claim exec teams in place by April Fools' Day


> at risk of redundancy ten days ago, and are believed to number tens of thousands of individuals.

Me thinks that's a big fat exaggeration or blatant error. Would make it a 40% RIF.

http://www.symantec.com/en/uk/about/profile/business.jsp has ... More than 21,500 employees worldwide.

That's a bit unlikely.

Eco-friendly fluid keeps SGI supercomputer cool and moist


Re: Aesthetics

That's mixing the Cray hardware details folks. The Cray 1 and Cray XMPs had the "seats" covering the power supplies, and the Cray 2, Cray 3 and T series had the immersion cooling (no seats). More details on the Cray FAQ home page on


Building PCs into fish tanks full of clear Mineral oil is feasable http://hackedgadgets.com/2008/10/24/computer-cooled-using-a-mineral-oil-filled-fish-tank/

but without secondary oil cooling, when worked hard, eventually it will overheat as the oil -> air interface is thermally slow.

Symantec fires CEO Steve Bennett: To lose 1 chief is unfortunate, to lose 2 is OK, apparently


Re: yup, money money money

Bennett was a changer that was moving the needle and dumping the numties and fat 1:3 sales management layers.

Sorting a tech corp takes time. Refactoring products is a long term process

esp when the cash cows are still milking.

Dumping Steve is a step back to the quarter-at-a-time pointy hair management style.

Belgian judge mulled BANNING APPLE (actually, its website) in Euro warranty row


MBP '15 2011 - Fails after 2..3 years

In the long and sorry tale about MacBookPro 2011 Graphics/Motherboard failures


2011 MacBook Pro and Discrete Graphics Card^H^H^Hhip

Apple is clearly not honoring the 6 Year for manufactoring defects rules in the UK. Trying to get a repair refunded under Section 75 Consumer credit act from the CCard company is frought with delay and missdirection.

Cisco HAUNTED by $655m memory components snag


Would be good if ....

Would be good if .... other companies accepted that the expected life of electronics kit is more than the 3 years accounting depreciation period.

EXAMPLE : about time Apple got in front of the high failure rate of the 2011 MacBookPro 15' Integrated graphics chip failures that kill motherboards.

Australia rebukes Apple for 'false or misleading representations'


It's just so "Me too"

Apple got a slap from EU for exactly the same thing. see http://www.apple.com/uk/legal/statutory-warranty/

and when you have had a MBP 2012 laptop costing £1400 need a £470 new logic board after 14 months you will understand the need to do this. Pity USA folks that don't buy the extended warranty or those many folks with 2011 15' MacBookPro with failing Graphics chips (again) in forum https://discussions.apple.com/thread/4766577?start=375&tstart=0

Star Trek: The original computer game


And the spin-offs ..

Blake's 7 anyone ? o-= becomes *-= with a few other string substitutions your in any universe you choose. Such were the blessing of src code distros. I have a terminal session stuck in a "Twisty maze of passages all alike" here on OSX, hints anyone ?

Iomega Prestige Portable 1TB


Check the guarantee

Do not buy any disk drive product that does not include at least a 3 year guarantee. If the maker is not confident that the drive will last that long why should you be ? With external drives make sure that includes the power supply brick as those are prone to failure as well.

Apart from the customer forums Iomega has a "product in warranty" only support policy. I bought an Iomega 1TB drive on the day OSX Leopard and Time machine were released. It's dead and gone now thanks to the failing PS brick killing the enclosure electronics. That drive cost me over £100 per year of service.


Ten Essential... 500GB Portable Hard Drives


Check the guarantee

Do not buy any disk drive product that does not include at least a 3 year guarantee. If the maker is not confident that the drive will last that long why should you be ? With external drives make sure that includes the power supply brick as those are prone to failure as well.

Do some math .. Divide cost by length of guarantee and see what cost per year you will paying. If it comes out to be more than on-line storage think again.


British Library to scan 40m newspaper pages


HD & OCR is key

Lets hope the scans will be of high enough resolution / contrast to be actually readable, have lossless compression on the images and that the OCRing will be usefull/intelegent enough to index with differentiated titles.

Future generations will need to know who ate the hampster.


UK media: 'Met Office computer will destroy the world'


Same price tag as 7 years ago

A couple of things on the BBC news article http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/devon/8224956.stm about this story. Firstly yesterday they had a picture of the previous ukmet NEC computer rather than the current IBM system. The soraway Sun had the right picture.

Secondly the price tag. At £30m this seems to have been the price for a big "super" for the last few years. Back in 2002 Ukmet paid GBP 27.5 M for the previous NEC + services.

BTW The Ukmet machine from '94 was a 16 Gflop Cray C90. About what an Intel Quadcore Q6600 PC can do these days. C90 price tag £30M, PC Price tag £350.

Serial killer may have been conjured by DNA blunder


Q: Just how scientific and balanced is this swab process ?

A: ... Not Very

Science 101 - Do your experiments and have a control sample. Don't just look for evidence that proves a theory of guilt - look as hard for evidence that disproves your theory.

Alien ? - We only test delusional country bumpkins to prove how clever mankind has become before the invasion .

Biometrics exhibit blushes over email snafu


Wellcome to *all* your data

Not such a larf when you remember that the The Wellcome trust is piviotal in the running of UK Biobank. http://www.ukbiobank.ac.uk/

" UK Biobank is a large cohort study comprising 500,000 men and women aged between 40 and 69, recruited in the UK . It began in 2003 and will run for up to 30 years. The study involves collection of data on health and lifestyle, blood sampling for biochemical and genetic analysis, and long term follow up via NHS medical records to accumulate data on health outcomes. The project is sponsored jointly by the Wellcome Trust, the Medical Research Council, the Department of Health and the Scottish Executive. "

Was asked to join this data scoop-up but declined using "a lack of trust" reason. I think I will print this article out and send a "Told you so" and feel really smug all week.

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