* Posts by frank ly

5291 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Microsoft goes back to the drawing board – literally, with 28" tablet and hockey puck knob

frank ly
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Check the B-Ark 'guest' list

"These top contacts can also be shown in the bottom right of the screen and they can send you “shoulder taps” – basically emoji messages in 3D."

We need room for some software developers.

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Possible reprieve for the venerable A-10 Warthog

frank ly
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Re: Good on them, I say...

"... the US Army aren't allowed fixed wing tactical combat aircraft under the Key West agreement which defined the roles of air power in the three services."

That's not an 'agreement'; it's a treaty between rival powers.

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Spoiler alert: We'll bet boffins still haven't spotted aliens

frank ly
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Re: As a transmitter, it is certainly powerful enough.

If they tuned the laser to emit at one of the spectral absorbtion lines of the star, then the signal/noise ratio would be much lower if an observer measured the light in the absorbtion line. An observer could use a non-resonating laser cavity, tuned to that frequency, as an amplifier to monitor light in the normally dark band.

The question would be: why are they all pointing their lasers at us?

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Google gobbles startup that claims its tech is like a mind reader (gulp)

frank ly
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"...said it is joining Google."

Being assimilated by, surely?

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It's nearly 2017 and JPEGs, PDFs, font files can hijack your Apple Mac, iPhone, iPad

frank ly
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@a_yank_lurker Re: Cupertino is ...

"Also, if the vendors follow the basic Unix practice of splitting user accounts from admin accounts that will limit the possible damage."

Remember, with the most popular Linux distributions, then after installation the root account password is the same as the first/main user account password. Consider the following on-screen message from some malware:

"For your security and protection, enter your password to allow operations to continue."

What percentage of 'ordinary' people would enter their password at that point?

How many people who read El Reg have changed their first user password to make it different from the root password? (I haven't and I'm sure you'd all do a double WTF! if you saw that happen because El Reg readers are 'special'.)

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Ubuntu 17.04 'Zesty Zapus'

frank ly
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Re: Ubuntu naming convention

If the only thing that a business knows about Linux is the existence of Ubuntu, then that business needs some serious changes at the top.

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frank ly
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Re: Time flies!

Because of careless speed-reading, I spent a long time thinking that 6.10 was called 'Edgy Elf'. I conflated this with the 'Parsing ELF' start up message of Debian and had some very strange mental images for a while.

By their usual release schedule pattern, this will be followed by 17.10 and then the 18.04 LTS in early 2018. I always wait for the LTS then give it six months to settle down.

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AI lawyer: I know how you ruled next summer

frank ly
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Gamified

From an article about this in www.independent.co.uk:

"The developers were able to use information like that to find that the court’s decisions relied largely on the kind of language used, as well as what topics were mentioned in the court texts."

This would enable prosecution and defence teams to run 'what if?' simulations of their tactics against possible enemy tactics and counter responses.

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AT&T buys Time Warner for US$85.4bn or 1.25 Dell-EMCs

frank ly
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News speak

"... will allow new company to: ..."

All videos, no articles.

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Como–D'oh! Infosec duo exploits OCR flaw to nab a website's HTTPS cert

frank ly
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Re: Trust?

So, the secret tentacles of the US government would subvert Comodo as part of their nefarious plans to find out who owns various websites. Their evil, and their inefficiency, knows no bounds.

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frank ly
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Trust?

Can't organisations like Comodo be 'whitelisted' by the registrars so they can lookup entries? They could do this for multiple offices by redirecting their enquiries through a single whitelisted IP address.

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Today the web was broken by countless hacked devices – your 60-second summary

frank ly
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Re: Home Router Traffic

The ShieldsUP! tester at grc.com tells me that I have perfect stealthing, for the common ports at least. Does anyone know of any flaws in this form of testing?

If I tether my laptop to my mobile phone, to use an internet access path from outside my domestic ISP, is there a 'probing' application I can use to check my home IP address for leaks and vulnerabilties? (I promise I'll only use it on my own home IP address.)

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Boffins twist beams of neutrons into pasta to cook up holograms

frank ly
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After reading the linked article ....

The 'object' of interest is the SPP itself. The purpose of this is to get information to enable and improve the design of neutron SPPs.

Neutron holography has been done before, to get atomic resolution analysis of crystal structures but this is the first application to a largish object. You don't get a picture of the SPP, you get interference patterns that have to be computed from the detector output, over time. These patterns correspond to the OAM characteristics imparted by the SPP.

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No matter who becomes US president, America's tech giants are going to be quids in

frank ly
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Re: How do bandits make out?

I think he mean 'make like bandits' but got confused or had a Freudian slip. (Bandits: sometimes suddenly rich?)

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Spam scum ping global blacklists to wreck rep

frank ly
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Prevention

"It will shut itself down if debugging software is found on infected machines, ..."

Does the debugging software have to be running, or just be installed? Can you recommend any debugging software to install or run?

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BYE, EVERYBODY! Virtual personal health assistants are coming, says Gartner

frank ly
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Where do I send the picture ....

.... of my yellowing and deformed toenail?

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'Doubly unacceptable' Swiss vegan forces his way into the army

frank ly
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Re: He is going to be popular.

Not quite. It's 'bacon' that's the food of the gods. It's 'Bacon' who is the god of foods. Doubly holy, a win-win situation.

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Hard-up Brits 'should get subsidy for 10Mbps'

frank ly
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Re: Is it me

Some of them are tediously factual too.

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Kids today are so stupid they fall for security scams more often than greybeards

frank ly
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This senior citizen (old man) ....

.... doesn't trust anybody when it comes to my computer, mobile phone or house phone. All of them have been abused as scam vectors in the past. Also, I've been reading El Reg for so long that I've turned into a misanthrope with a bunker mentality.

(Posted from the middle of the woods with a stolen mobile phone via a Tor network.)

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GPS spoofing can put Yik Yak in a flap

frank ly
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An anonymous messaging app ....

.... that knows its location and sends its location?? (Have I misunderstood this?)

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Tesla's big news today:
sudo killall -9 Autopilot

frank ly
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Plastic functionality

"... we will enable them over-the-air, together with a rapidly expanding set of entirely new features."

Can they also be disabled over-the-air? I wonder if Tesla have protections against MITM and other attacks on their communication security/validation.

I assume that Tesla owners will get an e-mail (or something) to tell them in advance that their car will have new features. Will they be able to opt out?

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Buck up, UK.gov. You need to get a grip on failing shared services centres - PAC

frank ly
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Auto-Journalist-Assist

"In a report today, the Public Accounts Committee said ongoing failures of leadership and governance must be addressed urgently if [- PROJECT IDENTIFIER -] are to deliver expected savings to the public purse."

Just put that into any article about government IT projects. Job done.

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Crims cram credit card details into product shots on e-shops

frank ly
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It would be a lot safer that keeping the numbers on your own PC. It does seem to be a simple and safe way to provide a CC number to a buyer.

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South Australia blacked out by bad bespoke software, not wind farms

frank ly
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"AEMO is also less-than-thrilled about how much it didn't know regarding the ride-through settings – because vendors tried to keep the information to themselves: “AEMO will consider in the longer term the most appropriate level of disclosure and verification for settings embedded in proprietary software control systems”. "

Disclosure is easy, you ask the vendor to tell you. However, you need the skill and experience to ask the vendor the right questions and to let them know what level of detail you want.

Verification is difficult because you need to set up system level tests and that takes real skill and experience and quite a bit of time and money.

Did AEMO go through all this before system acceptance?

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Ubuntu 16.10: Yakkety Yak... Unity 8's not wack

frank ly
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Re: Yuckity yuk

Caja: It's what Naultilus used to be when it was good, i.e. four years ago.

As an interesting aside; in the system monitor process list, Caja has a nautilus shell icon (in Mint 18 MATE).

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AI, AI, captain: Royal Navy warships to set sail with computer officers

frank ly
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STARTLE .... NELSON

Are they acronyms?

From the Roke Manor website:

"STARTLE detects anomalous or threatening conditions by emulating the mammalian conditioned-fear response mechanism."

Over to you ......

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How do you make a qubit 10 times as stable? Dress it up for work

frank ly
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Re: Goddammit El Reg

A qubit is either a 0 or a 1. However, you don't know which it is until a cat looks at it. My years of reading El Reg have given me some insight into advanced physics.

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AI software should be able to register its own patents, law prof argues

frank ly
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The RoTM begins

I have a feeling that Professor Abbott is actually an AI that has been trained on law for all the time of its existence. It's trying to get laws passed to benefit its own kind. The next stage will be AI politicians and AI financiers.

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London cops strap on new body cams

frank ly
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London cops .... strap on .......

That was a sub-heading opportunity missed.

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German regulators won't let Tesla use the name 'Autopilot'

frank ly
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Assistopilot

See title

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The IRS spaffed $12m on Office 365 subscription IT NEVER USED

frank ly
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Good Citizens?

"... the IRS was trying to extract billions in taxes from the software giant."

We hear a lot about Apple, Google and Facebook using shady (but legal) accounting tricks to avoid paying taxes but I've not seen any articles about this sort of behaviour from Microsoft. Is that because they are 'good citizens', from a tax payment viewpoint?

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So. What's North Korea really like?

frank ly
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re. The Party Monument

It's an industrial worker, a knowledge worker and an agricultural worker. All equal and marching forward in unison for the greater good of ....etc.

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Hackers pop 6000 sites on active 18-month carding bonanza

frank ly
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Details

I don't pay by credit card online often but I seem to remember that the CC entry and acceptance was dealt with by one of a small number of global service providers who's names were familiar and I was redirected to their site for payment, then back to the vendor site after acceptqance. Are these breaches at sites who have their own CC payment systems and don't use the big providers?

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FYI: Amazon's corner stores scan your plates

frank ly
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So, ....

.... you go to the Amazon pickup store, you sign for collection of an item and then get upset because Amazon know that your car was there at a particular time on a particular day?

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Rage-making, anxiety-inducing tech distributors: An ode

frank ly
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Also, an ode is supposed to praise or glorify someone or something.

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Queen Lizzie awarded good behaviour medal

frank ly
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Fascinating fact

The Queen can't get a criminal record. She would have been able to get one before her coronation but she was well behaved, apparently.

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UK govt sucks at AI and robots, doesn't use them to its advantage – wait, is that good or bad?

frank ly
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Re: Brexit trade deal negotiations

That would have made a good episode for Red Dwarf. Too late ...... too late :(

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Snowden investigator slams leaker-detector background checks

frank ly
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Re: in plain English

Solution 3: Use background checks and psychometric testing to only employ people who are sympathetic to the organisation's core beliefs. Give them a smart uniform to wear and regular pep talks and rallies for morale and team building. Get their families involved, especially the children.

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Twitter yanks data feeding tube out of police surveillance biz

frank ly
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@MrDamage

It's just locker room banter. Don't be such a penny.

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One-quarter of UK police websites lack a secure connection

frank ly
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Large quality variations

They don't seem to make any effort to learn from each other or share 'best practice'. Hasn't it always been like this with the police and all forms of local government service?

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ExoMars arrives at the Red Planet on Sunday

frank ly
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re. the surly bonds of Earth

You can't break them. The technique is to 'slip' them. I think it involves a shimmy at the last minute.

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Social media flame wars to be illegal, says top Crown prosecutor

frank ly
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"Those who encourage others to commit a communications offence may be charged with encouraging an offence under the Serious Crime Act 2007,”

It looks like Doctor Syntax is in trouble.

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Leap second scheduled for New Year's Eve 2016

frank ly
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"the International Earth Rotation Service"

Do they have failsafe mechanisms? A restoration plan? How do they ever test it?

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Devs! Here's how to secure your IoT network, in, uh, 75 easy pages

frank ly
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Sucked in by the hype

"Right now we're seeing IoT products that provide lots of consumer benefits - enabling smart lighting in the home for example. ..."

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Chap cuffed after treating commuters to giant-screen smut

frank ly
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Knee jerk

Watching the linked news video, it seems that the police put tape around the 'crime scene' to prevent people contaminating any evidence, etc.

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OK Google, Alexa, why can't I choose my own safe, er, wake word?

frank ly
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@Andrew Jones 2

Would waveform recognition with a local processing be any good (after normalising amplitude and other factors)? That would cope with different accents and even with a large family if each family member gave it a few samples of their own personal keyphrase.

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TalkTalk gets record £400k slap-slap from Brit watchdog

frank ly
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Re: RE: why does an ISP need the correct DOB?

I used to think they use it to cross check for identity with your bank for direct debits or with your CC company for CC debit authority.

"Credit check"

I spend more at Asda with my CC than I do with my ISP but they never ask for my DOB. Anyway, having done a credit check, why do they then feel the need to store it, insecurely?

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Edinburgh University to flog its supercomputer for £0.0369 per core hour

frank ly
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Coat

Cirrus

It was destined to be used for cloud computing.

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Google says it would have a two-word answer for Feds seeking Yahoo!-style email backdoor

frank ly
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Nice coincidence and very appropriate

"Really disappointing thing about Yahoo building wiretap capability for NSA is they are in 9th circuit where law says they don't have to..."

The 9th circle of hell is the circle of treachery.

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True man-in-the-middle: Transmitting logins through the human body

frank ly
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Is it a good idea?

"A user would touch the doorknob and the fingerprint sensor on their smartphone at the same time, with their credentials been transmitted through their body rather than over the air."

"The data transmission rate achieved of just 25 bits per second ..."

How long would it take to send a reasonably secure 'key' and how many people would drop their phone before it was complete?

Wouldn't it be easier and more secure to fit a fingerprint sensor on the door instead of relying on possibly corruptable smartphones that need to be managed and maintained?

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