* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Google suit halts Microsoft fed contract

Tom 13

@Lance 3

But that auto-deletion feature runs afoul of email retention rules for FIAA regs.

Where's the red tape icon?

Microsoft 'maintenance' blocks Hotmail

Tom 13

Sadly, it hasn't.

If it had, he wouldn't be posting it as a complaint trying to get it working, he would be posting it as a sendoff as he signed up for an account elsewhere.

Dubai assassins used email trojan to track Hamas victim

Tom 13

If you insist on starting your history in 1948, then while you may be

a useful idiot, you do none the less support Hamas' violent activities, if only rhetorically.

Prior 1948 Britain had the protectorate mandate for all of Palestine. Their (admittedly fucked up) solution to the mass execution of the Jews in Nazi Germany was to partition their mandate into Jordan for the Palestinians and Israel for the Jews. The Jews did not terrorize the Palestinians until after the Palestinians attacked the Jews. In point of fact, all of the land which the Jews "occupied" in Israel was purchased legally from Palestinians under the laws set forth by the British government.

Refusing a right to return until such time as a treaty ending a war has been signed IS standard diplomatic practice.

'Operation eMule' feds bust duo with 500+ eBay, PayPal accounts

Tom 13

DHS was cobbled together out of I don't know how many other

existing departments with no real authority to rationalize their structure to their purported function. They're sort of a Consolidated Amalgamated Conglomerated mega-LLC, Inc. beastie.

Courtney Love in court over 'Boudoir Queen' Twitter bitchfight

Tom 13


I'd say both tweets were opinions, and until one side or the other provides proof of their claim, both were defamatory. In Vegas, I'd put money on Love being the loser.

But then again, I don't twitter.

Cell phone search needs no warrant, say Cal Supremes

Tom 13

Spoken like a true

commie. The sorts of people who mistake National Socialists for the far right.

Tom 13

Nope, this one came from the Cali court, aka the farthest left court

in the country.

Microsoft confirms code execution bug in Windows

Tom 13

No need to break functionality.

Just need to check the values of the color indexes on the icons. If it's negative, trash it.

Even badly coded third party apps ought to be producing positive values for color indexes, which is why hackers found it for specially crafted images and icons. If the third party apps had created them, something would have broke and it would have gotten fixed.

Now, the rest of your rant about third party crapware is spot on.

Not so sure about the Cult of Jobs and *nix, particularly as Jobs has decided to work with a *nix core for his OS. You might find an overflow function, but there are also fewer exploits after you've got the overflow. And I expect that if such overflow conditions occur, the *nix crew will have a patch issued long before MS.

US woman sues again over XP 'downgrade', seeks class action

Tom 13

Mr. Windmill, please allow me to introduce you

to Donna Emma Alvarado Quixote from La Mancha Spain.

Pirate Bay mouthpiece disses Assange's legal wrangles

Tom 13

A US Dept of Justice that wasn't able

to come up with a reasonable set of charges against Osama bin Laden when an Arab country wanted to turn him over will be equally inept at coming up with charges against Assange. The only risk to him is actually in Sweden, where another anarchist is using him as a prop to further their particular anarchy cause.

Double-clicking patent takes on world

Tom 13

One other thing,

while this particular case can probably be laid entirely at the feet of the USPTO, not all of the problems are their fault. The US Congress has added several categories to patentable claims which ought not exist. Business processes are one which comes immediately to mind. There may be some bleed over from those choices in the sense that when one warps his own brain to work on business patent processes he also loses the ability to think rationally about traditionally patentable claims.

Tom 13

I don't think I'd want the USPTO being a co-defendant at the trial.

That would put the full force of government behind upholding the patent, not just the patent trolls. I prefer having someone less well funded defending the patent.

On the issue of a penalty for the USPTO, again we run into the same problem - it's government money, not USPTO money, although someone might not get a good review.

No, if you want to put responsibility back into the equation, I think you have to go the licensed Mechanical/Physical Engineer route: If the court strikes down the patent the clerk issuing the license is personally liable for damages resulting from the bad decision.

2011: The year open source (really) goes capitalist

Tom 13

The money line:

"It finally recognizes that the world no longer revolves around it, and that it must therefore embrace an unfettered web. At least for now."

Actually, this isn't MS's first foray into standards and interoperability. Although it is true that most people believe they shafted the original copyright owner of DOS, in the early days of their existence they did to a large extent depend on standards an interoperability amongst different vendors. They couldn't produce all the software people needed, so they promoted standards and interoperability in areas where they didn't compete. As they grew larger and selected areas that they wanted to control, yeah they were ruthless in destroying standards and writing the software so only they could operate (STAC, QEMM). It was only really after the advent of Windows that they really got nasty. I expect more of the same in the future.

Hacker charged over siphoning off funds meant for software devs

Tom 13

And the Nazi symbol use to just be an insignia for long life and prosperity.

before WWII it was used extensively by Kipling who was certainly no fascist sympathizer.

The meanings of words and symbols change and these days both are associated with evils regardless of their actual parentage. In fact, I dare say that even at the time the word was entering the common lexicon it had the negative connotation. I played Steve Jackson's card game of the same name (must admit crash Squishysoft's servers in that game was always satisfying and usually easy) when I was in college, which is now many more years ago than I care to acknowledge.

Google 'open' nonsense brainwashes US gov

Tom 13

Except that the hand that is up one of the three sock puppets

who approved these FCC rules is that of Google.

MS withdraws misfiring Outlook update

Tom 13

What? Nobody at MS has a gmail account to test their application?

Not even a test account?

Queen set to outlaw ID cards today

Tom 13

The price of goods, especially food, won't go up 40%

Data show that sales taxes can't realistically increase beyond 13%. Up to that point while black markets are a nuisance they aren't a major problem. Beyond 13% sales tax black markets an other non-taxed trading do overwhelm the system. Net income tax revenues rarely exceed 23% regardless of how high any marginal rate of income tax is. In fact, the only way found so far to support the 40%+ tax rates of most European countries is the VAT.

This question is much debated in the US, and I am firmly of the belief that the best way to protect everyone's interests is a flat income tax. I'd make an exclusion at the level below which it would cost the government more to process the tax claim than they receive in taxes. I understand the economic engine aspects of the fair or highish flat sales tax. But I believe there is a more important moral question that can only be addressed by the income tax. Right now there is too much greed and ency in the system masquerading as "fairness." These evils will only fade when the poor man's money is as much at risk as the rich man's money.

Tom 13

If real thieves cost you less then the government,

then the government are the true thieves and need to be put behind bars.

Feds please no one with first official net neut rules

Tom 13

There is nothing "unclear" about whether or not the FCC has the authority to do this.

The DC Appeals Court unequivocally said NO in April of this year (http://www.wired.com/threatlevel/2010/04/net-neutrality-throttle/). The only people who are "unclear" on this decision are the pinheads who approved these unconstitutional regulations.

Christmas shoppers hit by BT fire

Tom 13

Even in a distributed system it is difficult to maintain redundancies

across all segments. Looks to me like this failure is close to the end of a distribution line which is where it gets exponentially more expensive to maintain redundancies. Especially since somehow or another you have to pay for them.

Several years back the CIO was talking big about having two vendors supply internet access to us, and even have them coming in to different corners of the building so that if one line got cut during street work, the other would still be up. Then he got the price quote for the work and binned the plan.

Of course, I don't know the specific geography so maybe I'm all wet and this is a large geographical area where such redundancies should have been planned in.

Senior Guardian hacks turn on Assange

Tom 13

After catching one of Glenn Beck's epsidoes the other week,

I am quite convinced it is a honeypot, just not a CIA honeypot.

It's a honeypot from a different branch of the anarchists mob. It got sprung at this point in time because he wasn't important enough before now for the accusations to catch much wind. Best part for them is not only does it advance their specific subcause (all sex is rape) it also helps undermine trust in government because they can play the fascist CIA card.

Not that Beck played that angle. He didn't seem to know what was going on, just that it was all rather fishy.

Secunia intros auto-update to patch management tool

Tom 13

Great tool that I like a lot.

I'll have to check out the new version. It will be interesting to see how it handles my dual boot config.

IBM super cleared for trivia showdown with humanity

Tom 13

Well that's probably because

You Are The Weakest Link. But the real question is Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader?

It's all pretty much the same schtick, just different titles. Personally I always liked the game mechanics of Joker's Wild better. Just as long as Bob's not asking someone to "Come on down" I think it will be okay.

Assange lawyers fume over leaked rape case docs

Tom 13


meet Gander.

Patents do not protect small firms, says trade body

Tom 13

There's an idea I can get behind!

Bring back the model requirement. That'll do in those damned business process patents too.

FBI 'planted backdoor' in OpenBSD

Tom 13

Yep. Of course that was pre 9-11.

Now there's not much chance the passengers are going to believe the dude even if he was only your garden variety hijacking

Tom 13

No, you just managed

to provoke a twit who probably had his sense of humor removed when he worked for the FBI in the dirty tricks division.

I laughed and I use Windows every day.

'Blitzer' railgun already 'tactically relevant', boasts maker

Tom 13

But why would you want to drink

a rail gun?

Tom 13

Actually, I'm better with a bow (recurve, none of them new fangled compoung thingies)

than a gun, didn't take all that long to become proficient with it either. Never tried a sling. Now what a gun does give you is longer range. These days, they are also a fair bit quicker than a bow as well. Last time I checked bows and rifles cost about the same at the local sporting goods store. Well, the ones worth owning at least. You can get those cheapy bows they use at summer camp for far less than a decent one.

Google drops nuke on 'objective' search engine utopia

Tom 13

Old news to some of us in the US.

But most of you Brits wouldn't have noticed it. Google's bias shows up more when searching for certain news items. The leftist articles show up the right-wing articles don't. You guys tend not to notice because you dismiss the right-wing articles as nazi propaganda and other such drivel and back Google's position by claiming such items aren't really news and don't belong in the rankings.

Email protected by Fourth Amendment, says appeals court

Tom 13

Ah the universal failure of understanding from liberals

The First amendment does not "Allow" anything, it is a prohibition on government interfere with a natural right of man with which he was endowed by his Creator as more famously set forth in another document before the current occupant of the White House started editing it in speeches. It also does not allow free speech to be controlled anywhere, that is a distortion caused by activist liberal judges intent on perfecting the morality of man by substituting their own prejudices for established law. In this case for specifically protecting certain people from hearing things which might make them uncomfortable.

Now as to the ruling itself, I think it is ultimately defensible, though not quite so obviously as some people think it ought to be. The key element here is that in general email communications are not encrypted so it is more akin to sending a postcard than a letter. Anyone involved in the handling of the email (postcard) can read what is written on it. If an officer of the law happens to see a postcard while it is being handled in the normal process of delivery, it is not subject to 4th amendment protection because there is no reasonable expectation of privacy. The catch is that law enforcement has essentially demanded to search the post office to see the post cards, which itself does require a search warrant.

Anonymous turns attack drones against fax machines

Tom 13

For US companies you forgot

Place junk fax in interoffice envelop to permanently hired company lawyer for inclusion in monthly illegal use of fax filing. There's always the chance you might hit somebody with deep pockets and be able to file the class action lawsuit against them.

US Navy achieves '100 mile' hypersonic railgun test shot

Tom 13

Everybody to

the Third Bridge!

Paul Allen's monster patent attack hit by judge dismissal

Tom 13

I guess their paperwork was in slightly better shape than ACS:LAW.

But I hope it eventually gets filed in the same bin.


Dutch police arrest 16-year-old WikiLeaks avenger

Tom 13

@James Woods: Please use a portion of your next paycheck to buy a clue.

You clearly know absolutely nothing about Federally registered non-profits in the US. If you did, you would have taken the 30 seconds it took me to look them up and see that they are a 501(c)3 organization and included the full designation in your post. Because IIRC there are about 14 different classes of 501 non-profit organizations that can be registered in the US. And they all have different rules for what they can and cannot do. Most people tend to think of the 501(c)3 which is allowed to give people letters certifying donations made to them are tax deductible. They also tend to get discounts from vendors when purchasing things (and the ones from MS are HUGE). They are required to show that most of their money comes from membership fees or charitable contributions.

The key element for them however is not that they don't make money. It is that none of the OFFICERS of the corporation or its Board of Directors earn no income as a result of the operation. If that weren't true AARP would long ago have been ravaged for tax dollars given the size of their insurance business and senior citizens discount shakedowns. In fact, if you hire sufficiently clever lawyers you can even spin off profit making entities connected to your 501(c)3 group which funnel money to the 501(c)3 just as long as the 501(c)3 doesn't funnel money back into the profit making corp.

And if you go to something like a Social Group 501, you can do even more. You just don't get the same tax deductible tax bennies for your members.

Copyright troll sues for ownership of Drudge Report domain

Tom 13

It's Harry Reid's backyard. What the hell did you expect?

Honesty and fair play? Please buy a clue.

Tom 13

@Goat Jam

I don't think so but it wouldn't surprise me if they had.

The expense of hiring a lawyer to defend yourself is almost as onerous as losing the case itself. Fire a letter at a barely surviving company and you might get instant cash. Figure $20,000 to defend yourself if you can get it dismissed before you get to court and that's for a simple case. If you can settle for $10,000 without admitting fault you save yourself $10,000. If it goes to court the sky's the limit on fees.

Copyrights and Trademarks fall under IP laws, and IP lawyers are expensive. Dollar figures are rough numbers from a few years back when I sat on a non-profit board that had to hire lawyers to sue for actual trademark infringement, but the costs are the same on the defense side.

Tom 13

Technically the damage travels with the intellectual property.

If there was actual damage to the property and you purchase the property, you should be able to collect on the damages. The catch is whether or not there were actual damages BEFORE the property was transferred.

That being said, even with the fucked up laws we have here in the US, I don't think the courts are going to abide claims that damages are incurred when the new owner has changed the rules on reprint permissions. It smacks too much of ex post facto. What bothers me is that they didn't throw the book at the bad faith lawyers the first time around.

Amazon Kindles cash from Wikileaks

Tom 13

So Amazon is publishg material that even the US govt will allow all its employees

to read and el Reg thinks this is a story?

Somebody needs to go read Pruden's rules for news reporting: Getting the story First is job 1, but not at the expense of fucking up a simple fact check.

Elon Musk's Dragon capsule reaches orbit successfully

Tom 13


It may only be the first tentative steps, but we may finally be on our way off this rock.

Great work guys and gals!

Mastercard downed by Anon-Assange-fans

Tom 13

The only bit you got right is that it is going to cost hard cash.

Which is why this, unlike previous attacks launched by 4chan will be pursued by competent investigators.

Walmart falls in with Washington's war on terror

Tom 13

@Pirate Dave

Well, that's the kind of crap that happens when easily led sheeple buy into demonizing a company "because they drive all the mom and pop shops out of business" or "drive wages down."

I was pleased as punch when a Walmart opened not far from where I lived. Prices at the local price gougers suddenly plummeted because there was an honest vendor on the street. But after all the demonizing I now avoid it because service has gone to shit. They use to have a cashier at every register, these days you're luck if half of them are operational (including self-checkout). All that happened since the Marxists/Communist/Progressives successfully demonized a good company.

New NASA model: Doubled CO2 means just 1.64°C warming

Tom 13

@John Smith 19

That's actually one of the science problems the AGW crowd sweep under the rug: the fix station record and the satellite data don't match up well, just like the tree rings abandoned them when they needed them most, so they just ignored them and substituted other data. The other one is that when you are talking climate change, you pretty much need at least 10,000 years of data before you cover even one cycle. On that scale, 300 years of data, even though it multiple generations of people, isn't even enough data to call "preliminary."

Tom 13

Again, thrust post but a minor nit

Under the structure you've outline, all models are not science because they are all wrong in an absolute sense (eg Newtonian physics fail at near light speeds and Einstein's model fail for certain observations although at the moment I don't recall exactly which ones). What it needs are the following corrective factors:

* a model is accepted for practical purposes if the data agree within the margin error

* the margin of error has to be small enough to produce an acceptable signal to noise ratio (that is, you can see a clear trend outside the variations introduced by error)

To date none of the climate models pass muster under these modified criteria either, so your conclusion stills stands, but we get to keep the Newtonian and Einsteinian models as science.

Tom 13

@Tigra 07

Your mistake is in assuming only ONE of the Cs is for corruption.

Tom 13

Minor nit

In theory the climate models can be tested, in practice they fail those tests. The most obvious test is that a model should be able to predict future activity. Therefore you can use the model to predict a future point and compare the actual data of that future point against what the model predicted. The catch on this is "How far into the future do you need to go before you are sure you are measuring climate as opposed to measuring weather?"

The more obvious choice is to use the model to look at recorded data. In theory, if the model is accurate and there are sufficient data points from the historical record, you should be able to accurately predict the climate at a future point where you are far enough ahead do the question of weather vs climate is moot. The problem here is that at best we have 300 years of accurate data (being generous) to feed into the models.

So while your conclusion is correct in the sense that they have not been successfully tested, it isn't because they are inherently untestable. Otherwise, excellent post, including the bit about not quoting Wiki.

Operation Ore decision a 'serious miscarriage of justice' - lawyer

Tom 13

Maybe because the guy they convicted

tracked his expenses obsessively and the notes are all in his handwriting? Also that he has a record of disputing other illegitimate charges?

Gov decides not to have scientific advice on drugs any more

Tom 13

About time some of the politicians woke up to the

Bill Murray swagger too many so called scientific advisory committees are today. Too many ideologues have gone into the sciences, especially the social sciences so they can quote his "Back off man! I'm a scientist." when somebody else doesn't agree with their ideology (e.g. the CRU email).

Anti-virus skulduggery - upgrade licence clock shock slammed

Tom 13

Re: customers ... not informed that any time

So then, the notice is clearly listed at the end of the T&As? Nobody reads the T&As.

I never saw the notice when I was renewing/upgrading the copy of Norton that came on the parental units' PC.

American IT hires (some) new workers in November

Tom 13

They may not be able to force them to grow,

but they certainly can put a cap in them by following abysmally stupid policies like socializing healthcare and having the largest tax increase in history in the middle of a recession.

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