* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Apple files chip block stack patent

Tom 13
Unhappy

The concept of the stack should not be patentable.

What ought to be subject to making a patent claim is the process by which the stack is built. Assuming of course it truly is novel and not obvious and spelled out in sufficient detail so that someone with the appropriate engineering background could make one based on the patent application.

Not that that seems to mean anything to the courts here these days.

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Flyover states up attacks on Craigslist

Tom 13

Read that list of states again AndyS

Nevada isn't on the list, which means prostitution IS illegal in all of them and the Attorneys General are alleging craigslist facilitates engaging in illegal activity. Which is again, illegal. Maybe you can argue the case we'd be better off following Nevada's model, but the AGs are not being inconsistent.

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Intel chief: Obama (still) driving US off cliff

Tom 13

Mostly right. Your description of the government problems is spot on.

The bit you missed is that Big Companies these days are mostly in bed with Big Government because it is easier to pay off, I mean donate to a candidate who can then pass laws that inhibit or prohibit competitors from cutting into your customer base. We saw this when Big Pharma and Big Healthcare Insurance were the first ones to sign off on Obamacare after they ensured their own profit streams. In short, Fascism at its finest, only when I say 'Fascism' I mean it's technical definition of Government controlling the country by controlling key parts of Big Business, not the usual libtard definition of 'I don't agree with what you are saying.'

Not saying you won't find any Big Companies that are actually engaged in the American entrepreneurial spirit, just that they are damned rare.

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Tom 13
Flame

I'm calling bullshit on the simple statement that your healthcare costs haven't gone up.

Mine have gone up by more than the rate of inflation every year for the last 20 years except this one. And the reason they aren't going up this year is the plan the company offered last year got so damned expensive they couldn't afford to offer it to me at twice my previous contribution. So it actually got switched out for and HSA which may or may not cost me more than last year. Won't know until the end of the year.

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Tom 13

The Demoncrats who insisted on socialist banking practices and wouldn't

let Bush correct the programs initiated by Rahm Emmanuel et al when they ran Fannie Mae and Freddie Mack under Bill "can't find my pants" Clinton.

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Alleged bad Appler stashed $150,000 in shoeboxes

Tom 13

Or the judge could have employed a bit of common sense and determined that

since the first officer was engaged in a court sanctioned activity when planting the bug, the gun was admissible as evidence.

Still need that roulette wheel icon...

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Lexmark files patent gripe against 24 cartridge makers

Tom 13

So the question now is, will the judge who hears the Lexmark case be as

wise and just as the one who heard the DCMA case vis a vie ink/toner cartridges and summarily tossed them?

Where's the roulette wheel icon when you need it?

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US puts $30bn of IT projects up for review

Tom 13

Kundra from DC? ... Wasn't he involved in an FBI raid?...

Why, yes he was! (http://www.cio.com/article/484265/FBI_Raids_Washington_D.C._CTO_Office_of_Vivek_Kundra_Obama_s_New_CIO).

Well then, I guess we KNOW this will be a well done project.

As to the funding level and whether or not they can be accomplished, John Smith 19's first five points nail a number of issue. The bits about the contractor size, not so much especially with the current employment retention rules. The reality is that the skill levels of both the Federal and the contracting staff vary just as much. The large contracts are purely a budgeting technique. They are intended to provide some flexibility in contracting. Running through a 6-month budget proposal cycle for any given small project to meet contracting guidelines itself adds tremendously to the cost of each contract. The large companies also can't go it alone, so they need to partner with smaller companies to do the job. Set asides for the various 8a categories, small businesses, economic development zones, etc guarantees that one of the major headaches for whoever wins the contract is making sure they have all THOSE ducks lined up as opposed to whether or not what their line people are proposing are good technical solutions let alone whether or not the good technical solution is appropriate to the business/government issue it is intended to address.

Why do I know all this? I work for a small contract who's a sub to a big contractor at a government agency. The contract under which my company has been working is not being re-competed because it is going to be subsumed under one of those new big vehicles. Or maybe not. The developing story has changed three times in as many weeks. Regardless of whether or not my company is one of the winners on the big contract, whoever wins will have to offer me a job with them. I also know that a major project that was supposed to be under way for our agency has just been put on indefinite hold/canceled and that a new solution is being sought. Rumor is instead of an internally supported system the new specs and the new contract will be in the cloud. I know more and more people are getting comfortable with that, but I really prefer my data and mail to be on servers under the control of the agency. Or at least as under control as it can get when there are more chefs in the kitchen than customers in the cafe.

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Barclays computer says d'oh!

Tom 13

ATM, cash machines

in my cadre we call them wall banks and I humbly offer it as the preferred term by El Reg. As it perfectly describes their function and friendliness.

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Trojan-ridden warning system implicated in Spanair crash

Tom 13

As is almost invariably the case in all catastrophic failures

there is no single root cause of the problem. There were MULTIPLE points of failure:

- pilots

- air service crews

- IT staff

- IT planners (Windows is a real-time system, and as a lowly help desk worker I help support it in my work environment but it shouldn't be in the control tower.)

All of them are equally guilty of killing 174 people.

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Google's Wave flop: Spare us the warm fuzzies

Tom 13

Wave? Haven't heard of it until now.

Or at least I don't remember hearing about it. So I haven't used it either. If they were really pushing this I should have. Or maybe they did and with the cock-up that was Buzz, I wrote it off as a re-labeling push and put it out of my mind. Or maybe they've Borged so much already that I am reluctant to look at anything new they do, because I don't want them borging anything else. Being a conservative American, I'm big on decentralizing power. Google haven't been doing that recently.

Those are the reasons they failed and none of them has a magic bullet fix.

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PA school district avoids charges over webcam spy scandal

Tom 13

More than 10,000 pictures per PC and 'No criminal intent'?

Not buying it from Michael Mann, not buying it from the Philly DA. String up that DA right alongside the administrator(s) who thought this was a defensible idea. A wise man once said "nothing focuses the mind as much as a good hanging" and it seems we need to focus a lot of minds in Philly.

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MOON SHRINKING FAST - shock NASA discovery

Tom 13
Coat

Where's the Kaboom? There was supposed to be a

Moon shattering Kaboom.

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Researcher: Code-execution bug affects 200 Windows apps

Tom 13

But, but, but...

That's what THEY TOLD ME they were doing with Vista! However could they have lied to me?!

/end sarcasm

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Facebook Places - why, and why not

Tom 13

Tagged in photos is different than the location widget.

Somebody has to upload the photo, and the time and location for the photo might not be real time. For instance, I recently went to a convention with some friends. Friends took lots of pictures. Friend uploaded pictures, but mostly more than 2 days after the event ended. Getting tagged for being at the convention at that point was sort of irrelevant for finding people there.

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HP board cooked Hurd's goose before settlement

Tom 13
Unhappy

Re: We doubt this will be the last we hear from either side.

Never has there been a truer statement that I wish were false.

Me to Hurd and HP: Can't you people just go to court and fight it out like normal Americans and leave the rest of us out of it?

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Facebook login page still leaks sensitive info

Tom 13

And a spammer wouldn't have a Facebook account

he could log into because ... ?

Hate to say it by the guy has a serious point. There's no security to creating a Facebook account. Spammers could create 1 per hour per bot to validate and skim addresses if they so chose.

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People have no bloody idea about saving energy

Tom 13

And which saves more energy, switching the light on and off every time I enter the room

thus causing the bulb to burn out 30% faster than it normally would, or leaving it on during the 3 hours I move about the house and getting the full life out of the bulb?

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Tom 13

You should consult your Oxford's

Idiocy specifically refers to raw mental capacity, not whether it has been trained. I forget whether moron or idiot is lowest, but either way most folk don't want to be either.

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Tom 13

It may not be available in the UK, but here in the States

you can get products like Tide Coldwater which are specially formulated to clean all kinds of clothing in cold water. So the point holds very well: for the typical family washing in cold water saves more energy than not using the dryer.

We have a high efficiency front loader so my mileage varies greatly from the mean.

As to glass bottles, I think I saw some of those once when I was a kid so they are sort of irrelevant.

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Verizon demos 1Gbps over existing fiber network

Tom 13

FIOS is working out well for me, and Verizon is making money from it.

We pay around $160/month for the triple play, have been for over two years now when we finally killed our Comcast cable connection. We've been on the Internet service for over four. No problems with up down speeds and we are in a major metropolitan area where contention ought to be an issue. Occasionally we get some strangeness on the tv feed, but it usually clears fairly quickly. Internet is rock solid, except for Zynga games on Facebook, which I'm reasonably sure is servers at the Zynga farm. Oh, and occasional issues with Google Adwords refers from some of the sites I visit (AdWords download visible for 30 seconds, then everything else magically appears in under 5).

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Best Buy slaps 'God Squad' priest with cease-and-desist order

Tom 13

Trademark, copyright, and patent law in the US need to be rewritten from the ground up.

There are legitimate reasons for both, but the proliferation of similar, overlapping, and conflicting laws on both issues have gotten so Gordian knotted only the clean cutting sword of complete replacement can untangle them.

If this were purely a trademark issue, the completely different markets would invalidate a trademark complaint. If this is a copyright issue BB has a more significant legal complaint. The question at that point becomes "how different is different enough?" The logos do appear similar in type font, relative sizing of the font and background shape. On the other hand BB, at least in my area, uses an orange background which the God Squad doesn't (maybe because issues before God are always black and white?). Regardless of which complaint, in the BB is obligated to send a cease and desist letter. The letter may hint at the possibility of licensing but it can't demand it. Complicating the issue is that unlike patents, both copyright and trademark require aggressive defense to protect.

Coming back to my original point, BB's lawyers getting confused on exactly what infringement is being alleged is sufficient proof for me that even lawyers can no longer keep our mess of laws straight so they need to be junked as unworkable and we start fresh.

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Storage big three to define HDD way ahead

Tom 13

Been there, worked for the cartel, company went bankrupt and I didn't even get a lousy T-shirt.

Steven Jones pretty much nails it in his post. There are no technical reasons why the different technologies couldn't be adopted in the marketplace. Yes that does mean companies would have to take risks and might go out of business. That's the nature of the free market place.

Many years ago I worked for an outfit organized along the lines of IDEMA in a technology area that really has yet to mature - Home Automation. The whole thing was all legal under a then recently developed law that specifically allowed the formation of an independent company company that third parties could fund and when they licensed the technology back there could be no legal anti-trust claim in the US. The biggest thing it does is move the power plays behind doors instead of in the market place. We licensed at most three manufacturers for any given part of the technology. I still remember the pissing contests over gold vs lead contacts for one of the interfaces. It turns out that for our particular application, micro-plating gold was susceptible to migration effects which made it practically equivalent to using lead. Costs worked out to be similar as well. The only difference was which company was backing which standard. And in this case they really couldn't both develop the technology and see which one worked best because it was the physical interface.

Bottom line, I've been there and I don't see these types of organizations as particularly beneficial to consumers. The concept may look good on paper, but fails miserably in practice.

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Shareholders sue HP over Hurd's sex scandal probe

Tom 13

Meaning no disrespect to Misters Hewlett and Packard

I'm not sure even they would be able to turn the company around in the current environment. Laws were a bit more rationale when they started the company.

It's not just lawyers, it's lawyers for a retirement trust fund, most likely a union retirement trust fund. They understand nothing of economics let alone business. But hey, if you bet $100,000K on black, you've got a slightly less than 50/50 chance at walking away with double that.

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'Climategate' university to open up data

Tom 13

Re: FTP server

This is one of the few areas where I am willing to grant a very, very small amount of leniency. Given the sizes of the data sets they OUGHT to have, I don't think it is as easy as just dumping it on an FTP server. They need to have redundancy and availability for the data, and they need to be able to ensure the integrity of the data.

I do however concur with the sentiment that this smells more of continuing the cover-up of their politicization of science than of an actual change in attitude and methodology. So keeping a sharp eye on them continues to be a necessity.

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Tom 13

Security by obscurity doesn't work for programming,

works even less well with science. Spread your FUD elsewhere.

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Judge halts domain registration scam

Tom 13

Re: So why aren't these guys in prison?

It's a combination of both, plus an impluse to common sense. The common sense part says you can't get the money back from the scammers in the first place, and you'll pay more to lock them up than they scammed so it isn't an economically good deal. Granted, the more important common sense bit is: beat the snot out of them so they won't ever do it again, but libs seem to ignore this bit of common sense.

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Microsoft ends Office lovers' employee discount program

Tom 13

Seems to me like every poster here noticed the difference in the names, but

few understand/care about the difference in the programs. EPP was the better value program in the sense that once purchased you owned the license. For HUP, 1) your employer must have a current valid license for the software in question, and 2) you must remain employed by that specific employer. If you switch employers, even if the new employer has a HUP program, your license is no longer valid. The downside for EPP was that you paid a bit more for what you got.

I've purchased under both programs. I think the problem was that MS said you could be under one or the other but could not use both. Most companies seem to have gone with HUP, but I wouldn't equate that to pure consumer demand.

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Google Slides away from Wave FAIL with social network buy

Tom 13

Google can build all the social networking sites they want

Just so long as they keep it separate from my mail files I don't care. I might choose to opt in, I might not. Force me in and my mail account just may walk too. The problem wasn't Buzz per se, it was that they initially FORCED you into Buzz.

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US chops 131,000 jobs in July

Tom 13

This article has been written to hide the dire straights the US economy finds itself in.

True unemployment is indeed climbing. It is measured by the "official" unemployment numbers plus discouraged workers who have stopped looking for work. It also didn't mention the serious downgrade on the "official" numbers from the month before, and indication that when the current report is updated to reflect more accurate numbers next month, we will find the economy lost more than the 131,000 claimed. Another consideration is that the job creation rate is considerably below the rate at which the economy needs to add jobs to keep even with the increasing number of workers in the work force.

With the alignment of negative economic forces against the private sector that has been created by the current regime, a double dip recession is nearing certainty.

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AOL sales drop by a quarter, reports billion dollar loss

Tom 13

Which will die first?

SCO or AOL?

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Carnivorous plague mice 'wiping out towns' in US Midwest

Tom 13
Headmaster

No, I didn't assume these guys are as corrupt as the ones at Hadley.

It is entirely possible to in an ethically responsible manner write a computer model for the interactions amongst the various participants including their variation in numbers to see if there exists a configuration in which the mass kill event occurs. I will confess I didn't follow the link to the article to see if they are in fact proceeding in a scientific and ethical fashion, which is: have they published the raw data, the model, and provided access to the source code for their computer model? If yes, then it is solid science. If no, then you are correct to question the conclusions.

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Researchers: Arctic cooled to pre-industrial levels from 1950-1990

Tom 13

Um, no.

All the doomsayer climatology starts with the article of faith that the output of the sun has no effect whatsoever on temperature. It continues that since CO2 is going up and temperatures are going up, the two must be connected. The reasoning is not unlike the Freepers claiming that high rates of abortions among Blacks drives down the crime rates. The difference is that while almost everybody is offended by the Freeper claim, only those who care about the integrity of science are offended by the climatologist claims.

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Armed with exploits, ATM hacker hits the jackpot

Tom 13

Re: Banks never use...

You mean like that well-lighted booth outside the local supermarket that has "Bank of America" blaring from the light box on top and nothing but a pair of wall banks inside?

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Apple fanbois not as data hungry as Big Phone says

Tom 13

Another consideration is tethering,

since Apple doesn't allow it that would have an affect as well. I'd expect it to see more tethering usage with power users, hence even larger data consumption for the companies that allow it.

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Apple sued over hot iPad shutdowns

Tom 13

It may be no different than any other piece of electronic kit,

but that also means Apple need to not claim otherwise in their advertising. I'm pretty sure this one would be open and shut if called before your UK false advertising board. The only bit that makes it more interesting in the US is they bring out the roulette wheel to spin for damages (of course the lawyers do fleece most of it out of their marks, I mean clients before they leave the casino).

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Russian gang uses botnets to automate check counterfeiting

Tom 13

Well according to my roomate

because they figure the direct payment sites are more likely to get compromised than the US mail.

As for me, I'd still have a bottom basement credit score if not for automated bill payment.

Most businesses have adopted direct deposits for payroll and most people use that for getting their money.

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AT&T delivers iPhone data choke relief

Tom 13

Of course more iPhone users are satisfied than any other provider,

that's the essence of fanboi, regardless of what flavor of fanboi you are talking about. They love the product because of who made it, not because of any objective metric.

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Unpatched shortcut vuln exploited by mainstream malware

Tom 13

That was my initial reation as well

But with the latest news and the potential for a blended threat...

I may be willing to risk it at home where I can control most of what I access, but work places may need to reconsider.

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Wikileaks creaks under demand for Afghan war logs

Tom 13

Maybe you can't see him doing it,

but I can. Some people really are that low.

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Microsoft 'record' results beat Jedi mind trickery

Tom 13

Re: why vote down

I' d hazard a guess that it was using the word "competency" in a sentence with MS, that included no negatives, or diminishing modifiers.

I don't disagree with your assessment that MS should focus on improving the products which actually generate cash flow for them.

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iPhones dialling up premium-rate bills again

Tom 13

So how long before Apple puts AdMob on the

verboten vendors list?

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Dell blames staff for malware infection

Tom 13

Actually, it could be some git

borrowed the USB drive that normally sits on the automated system recording device to move some music files on his personal laptop, then put it back in the system. The automated system, being standalone and only used to burn the data to the flash drive as part of the refurb process wouldn't even need to be running Windows. Could be a linux or BSD device that copies the data from the drive to the USB to the flash. In the air gap case it certainly shouldn't need AV since the USBs should be scanned before being inserted into the device.

Of course, it could also be a Windows system since Dell probably gets them almost free from MS. But it wouldn't have to be.

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Dell warns on spyware infected server motherboards

Tom 13

Not happy Dell let it get in, but I will credit them for coming clean quickly and updating

as news developed.

I imagine I'm not the only one here old enough to remember when one of the music vendors released a whole raft of music cds that had garden grade malware installed (the sort Norton and McAfee were detecting while sleepwalking, not the DRM crap that they've recently intentionally included) on their mass stamped CDs.

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IE and Safari lets attackers steal user names and addresses

Tom 13
Flame

Jonathan you clueless twit

IF you assume the credit card details have been entered into autocomplete, it logically follows that the expiration date and ccv will also be stored. As you noted you need all three to complete an online transaction. The only reason to enter the card number is because you are completing an online transaction, so the other two will be entered at the same time.

Granted the fool who stores a cc number in autocomplete is a bigger twit than you are, but that doesn't excuse you.

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Yellow alert over Windows shortcut flaw

Tom 13
Joke

Re: rewrite all the code

Why yes they did. But you must admit there are some sections of code that are so utterly bog simple and obvious that no one could write insecure code for them, and it saves R&D time to simply borrow those and recompile them under the new secure system.

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Gizmodo editor reunited with seized goods

Tom 13

Cool. Chen made reasonable and just efforts to return the property.

He ID it as Apple kit, they said it wasn't theirs. At that point he no longer had "knowledge of or means of inquiry as to" and the section of law no longer applies. It's not Chen's fault Apple told him a bald faced lie before they went to the police to file a report about "stolen merchandise".

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Dell proposes settlement with SEC

Tom 13

Except of course that the precise reason for the existance of corporations

is to limit the personal liability of those involved.

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Global warming brings peace and happiness

Tom 13

Mote, meet beam...

Except of course that all of those billions wallowing in poverty are exactly the ones who were wallowing in the mud and not lifted by the successful democratic capitalist processes you abhor.

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Tom 13

You are clearly clueless about astronomy.

Studying it is one of the more demanding of the sciences, requiring a good understanding of physics and chemistry. In fact, the existing of helium was proven by Astronomer long before chemists here on Earth were able to synthesize it.

It also happens to be a good stomping ground for recognizing the severe limitations of climatology. Precisely because of our inability to move ourselves vast distances to better estimate distances to other stars, astronomy teaches the potential for erroneous projections based on a small observation set.

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