* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Faster-than-light back with surprising CERN discovery

Tom 13

nah, he meant


CERN's boson hunters tackle big data bug infestation

Tom 13

My mechanical engineering roommate assures me

that professional programmers aren't the only ones who have serious issues with Dr-Scientist types.

Yahoo! apologizes for blocking Wall Street protest emails

Tom 13

I'd say Yahoo!'s mistake

was unblocking the spam filter.

Tom 13


I would say it is rather more prototypical of how far ahead the sorts of people who do these sorts of things can think.

1-in-3,200 chance* that a fiery satellite chunk will hit someone on Friday

Tom 13

What, the subtitle isn't

"as Climate Scientists Once Again Threaten the Well-Being of Inhabitants" or some such?

For shame.

Microsoft exec departs after tweet about Nokia phone

Tom 13

I think I found your problem...

"Once you start connecting stuff up with a windows live account..." rings an automatic no sale for me. MS controls enough of my IT experience at the OS level, I'm not snorting more of what they sell. Which is the same reason I'm reluctant to use Google+ instead of Facebook. Google get enough of my info from my searches and email account.

Tom 13

In a world in which you could keep secrets, you might be on to something.

I think Nokia has made such a mess of things that they are pretty much a zombie corp at this point, but if MS were able to launch phones with a non-MS name they'd have a better shot at grabbing market share.

The problem of course is that since this isn't a world where secrets can be kept, even with NDAs, word would get out that MS was secretly funding Project X, and Project X would suddenly be even more sinister than MS because MS was doing it SECRETLY.

Prosecutor calls poker site 'global Ponzi scheme'

Tom 13

Well, it ought to be

but the state sez it isn't a Ponzi scheme, so it isn't legally a Ponzi scheme. Or something like that.

Tom 13

Because they were still inviting in

new players with which they paid off old players to keep the public profile up.

It might have worked to, if it hadn't been for those nosy kids and their dog...

Watching hurricanes

Tom 13

Except that you don't got all the way

to boiling water before the cooling units fail. Get much above 95 degrees ambient these days and things start to fail in the data center. By 110 degrees you better be shut down. Boiling is still another 112 degrees away.

Netflix: How to completely screw up

Tom 13

not even a little.

Their prices are comparable to what the brick and mortar stores charged before Netflix put them out of business.

Tom 13


I joined just about the time they made the changes and I joined FOR the streaming. Turns out the DVDs are the better part of the bargain. There were plenty of competitors listed on the blueray device. I just picked Netflix because of name recognition.

Tom 13

Wireless and satelite

are options. You're just not willing to pay for them.

Tom 13

You forgot old tv series.

which is why I signed up. But even that is getting sort of suckie.

Tom 13

Your hypothesis contain the unproven assumption

that the dvd operation is or ever will become unprofitable.

Tom 13

The problem is they are wrong as are you.

I stream regularly and I use the mail option regularly. Once a week on average, which is what I signed up for. To the extent I cut back on my streaming, it is because the service failed me, not because I wasn't up for streaming. Oh, and I'm streaming to the wifi enabled blueray player attached to the tv, not to the pc. So I'm exactly their target audience - not playing the geek on the streaming stuff.

Tom 13

And the online catalog sucks compared

to the mailing catalog. I signed up because I thought I'd use that and erase some shows my roomie has permanently stored on the DVD even though she doesn't often watch them. During the time I've been using it, they've pulled 2 series I was in the middle of watching. The other night I discovered a third has maybe a quarter of the episodes online, and the rest are DVD only.

The price hike may be bad enough, the two businesses part is even worse. Adding an option to put a DVD on your mail list from the tv would be the more intelligent option.

Fox turns LightSquared political

Tom 13

Except when the issue isn't the manufacturers of the new devices

but the installed user base of hundred of millions, possibly even billions of people, who are already using the technology under the pre-existing rules.

Tom 13

The Dept of Homeland Security was more

Democrat than Republican inspired. Big, unaccountable, unionized government agencies aren't really a Republican thing.

MPs probe social networks' position following riots

Tom 13

Re: dismissed ... micro-blogging service was good for organising criminal activity

Sure thing Baghdad Bob. Absolutely no evidence that ANY social media were used to generate flash mobs. Got it.

How about you admit reality so you can then force the MPs to face it too: Social Media are good for organizing criminal activities, because they are good for organizing ANY social activities. And the government can setup mechanisms that will let the mostly good population aide the police in getting to, and identifying the people who use the medium for criminal activities, not cut them off at the knees.

Microsoft bans all plugins from touchable IE10

Tom 13

Or maybe MS have been so busy flogging other crap,

that OneNote has as many avid users as HP's WebOS does.

Tom 13

Flash? I thought it was Reader.

Either way, it's Adobe. And the incessant updates that aren't easily managed from a central network point don't help matters either.

Tom 13

Doesn't that remark beg the question

of whether it is even possible for MS to alienate their developer community?

Google crams arsenal with 1,000 IBM patents

Tom 13

For as bad as it was,

it's about to get worse. The US either has or is just about to update the patent laws.

Tom 13

IBM monetizes its patents BY renting them to other companies.

And only the mother of all fools would be stupid enough to sue IBM.

Feds probe naked Scarlett Johansson outrage

Tom 13

No, the FBI waterboards turncoats.

The CIA waterboards terrorists.

Keep it straight.

Tom 13

True, but a friend's mother at least had enough clue

to ask someone who does, how to go about before handing off her laptop. So it's not just the 'no clue about how this stuff works's that is the problem. It's the 'I have something I ought to protect' issue that is a problem.

Tom 13
Tom 13

Perhaps the best answer is

to not have embarrassing stuff on your phone or in your email in the first place. Rummy's Rules and all that.

Windows 8 to ship with built-in malware protection

Tom 13

Except that based on the way malware re-writes the registry

it seems it isn't actually easier to protect. So maybe it would be better if the ini files were still the primary configuration location and you could just copy a good one from a known trusted location.


Oops, that migh frackup the DRM that prevent pirating, never mind.

Tom 13

The Hubble doesn't drop film canisters,

it ships packets processed from CCD collectors. Therefore more processing power is better. the newer processors don't necessarily mass more than a 486. In the cold temperatures of space, cooling new processors is probably easier. There may be less to go wrong, but the engineering on chips, unlike certain OSes, is pretty solid. Granted, it probably makes more sense to add RAM before boosting processing power for the Hubble, but that sort of makes his original point: the device should be engineered to the specs required for the job. PCs these days are lots of glitz to have the latest bloatware features. Now, I love my bloatware, but that doesn't mean I don't recognize that it IS bloatware.

Gravity wave detector gets more sensitive

Tom 13

This was the early interpretation of the work of Planck and Heisenburg

but it turns out to be wrong. It is an inherent property of Energy and/or matter.

Facebook security profiling doesn't like African log-ins

Tom 13

Kenya is the sort of place where

despite the development it is still hard to keep a land line up and functional because the line is worth too much to the copper thieves. How do I know? One the places I use to work for had a regional office there. Coworker went there. They have more guns per capita than Texas, and of the full-auto variety to boot.

Ten years after the Twin Towers: What's the Reg angle?

Tom 13
Thumb Up

Thanks for your work.

I'm sure it wasn't easy going back to the site and putting your nose to the grindstone.

Tom 13
Black Helicopters

@AC: Conspiracy theorists think Occam's Razor

is something the guys in the black helicopters will use to fake your suicide when they catch you.

Tom 13

Well there's one thing changed for the better already,

even if you didn't recognize it: if this were 1970, you'd never have known the experts were wrong about their initial assumptions.

Early Earth’s ‘golden shower’

Tom 13

Absolutely not.

Have you ever tried to use diamond to build an electrical contact? And never, ever use it to conduct heat away from the CPU. It has to be a metal.

HP, Microsoft dumped from Dow Jones 'green' list

Tom 13

Well, elect a fascist president and congress

and you get a fascist society.

Something completely lost on most people from Frisco. Or, maybe not....

Does Cameron dare ditch poor-bashing green energy?

Tom 13

Hey Rip,

I remember reading this exact same post 30 years ago. Only it was in Ranger Rick Magazine and I was young enough to believe it.

And if you look closely at item #1 in your list, what you will find is that the only reason for the huge price jumps in non-renewable energy is the tree shaggers keep putting more and more fossil fuels on the "nobody should be able to use these because they are too dangerous" list.

We didn't leak names of US agents, insists WikiLeaks

Tom 13

And I recall some program way back when

using the .csv extention that was explicitly used as a tracking complication tool for programers. Somebody bought it for me to use for archiving our publications files. I didn't find it particularly useful because it was programmer centric, but it was popular with programmers at the time. Could be a variant on that, possibly even the same tool 20 generations later.

Tom 13

He never gave

a shit about the blood on his hands in the first place. People who care about blood on their hands do one of two things with this kind of info: avoid it completely (that would be me), or go into government where there's at least a decent pretext of security the data to protect the innocent.

Sid Meier's Civilization

Tom 13

I enjoyed many a Civ 1 and Civ 2 games.

I didn't play on the tough levels. For Civ 1 I always played the Aztecs on the Earth globe, and smashed DC before they were able to build their first military unit. Then I happily colonized all of the Western hemisphere only having to worry about barbarians. When it came time to move into Africa or Europe, I sent my diplomats to buy them out.

In Civ 2 I found I could play the Americans in a similar fashion. And it always amused me to complete the pyramids in DC.

Later versions broke those strategies and I found them too war centric.

Google's anonymity ban defied by Thomas Jefferson

Tom 13

I guess were going to need a load of the white coat guys.

Facebook doesn't require you to use your own name, and doesn't actually require you to have only one account - anybody who thinks they do belongs in the loony bin. Yes they have a mechanism that encourages you to use your real name, but it isn't enforced. Boom-Boom Valdez and Candy Apples aren't the sort of names that even Frank Zappa would name his kids, but I'm pretty sure they both have Facebook accounts. I know because one of the friends of one of my sock puppets keeps friending people with names like those.

Seven lessons from the HP Touchpad fire sale

Tom 13

Item 5 is flat out wrong, and ought to be replaced

by the real number 1 (which for some reason IT folk seem particularly prone to forget): The greatest thing since slice bread won't sell itself. You still need to tell people what it is, why they need, and how they can afford it.

I saw the Woot.com deal for the HP thingie. I looked it over and couldn't figure out what the OS was, so I wasn't sure what it did and passed it by without a second thought. Then I saw the first of El Reg's Doom articles and went "Oh. Damn! Missed an opportunity there." With the $99 price, HP finally generated what's been missing for too long: marketing buzz about what their product is.

Android bakes bitter 20th birthday cake for Linux

Tom 13

Re: slow news day?

answer: yep.

Irene turned out to be such an East Coast flop*, even us wusses who can't take a 5.8 earthquake are shaking off the most recent "imminent apocalypse" without a lot of fanfare.

Tom 13

You were doing okay until you got to

"The ribbon" and invalidated any authenticity to which you might have laid claim.

Phishing email used in serious RSA attack surfaces

Tom 13

Well then you must live the blessed life of

never having to open Excel files which have been emailed by clients.

Mac Lion blindly accepts any LDAP password

Tom 13

No, the problem is in the OS.

The article is clearly indicating a prior legitimate access to the LDAP is occurring, so the server is doing its job. I suspect the OS is cache the LDAP credentials and resupplying them for the next authentication. And the problem is that means if another user comes by and attempts to re-authenticate to the server, his credentials aren't checked, just the working ones.

Microsoft unveils file-move changes in Windows 8

Tom 13


Are you Sure? (Y/N)

Tom 13

Fine. Keep the registry to force installs for the program,

but FFS put the user specific config files in an easily copyable location.

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