* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Google, Netflix ready next weapon in net neutrality battle: The fury of millions

Tom 13

Re: because there's no one else to "buy internet" from.

Then you should vote for a different mayor and city council (or appropriate equivalent thereof for your locale). Because that's where the problem is not with some cat stroking villain running the ISP.

Tom 13

Re: playing whack-a-mole

Except, that's not at all what the Verizon et al have talked about doing and the FCC is preventing. They're talking about QOS for types of traffic, and/or peering arrangements to move loads off the backbone. Which is what makes this a really EVIL Google stunt: they've already done what Verizon might ask Netflix to do.

Tom 13

Re: Ummmm

No, no, no, and I say again no.

The US Constitution governs the government, not the corporations or the people.

Tom 13

Re: Broadband is a -very- -very- low tech service.

Broadband is anything but low tech. Yeah the old cable companies were low tech, but not switched digital communications. It may be slow to change because introducing instability into the system could down the whole country, but that isn't the same thing as dusty.

Why should Congress or the FCC force the rest of the country to subsidize freetards who don't want to pay the people who produce their entertainment?

I'm all for forcing the broadband suppliers to comply with the terms under which they sell their services. If they say "unlimited" there should be no '*' after it, or at least it needs to be spelled out in letters just as large in close proximity to the term. But that doesn't mean we should force untenable contract terms on those private companies. I'm a Netflix subscriber. If their business puts too much stress on the high speed network, I should pay for it (either directly or via an increased fee to Netflix). And yes, I actually have been thinking about talking to my roommate about upping the limit on our broadband speed because of the number of appliances we now have on our home network.

Tom 13

Re: when their interests coincide with ours.

But does it?

I sure as hell don't want your Cat lolz gumming up my phone calls. And me streaming an old episode of Chuck on Netflix shouldn't gum up your phone calls. Prioritizing services can guarantee that. Net Neutrality destroys it.

US govt watchdog slams NSA snooping as illegal, useless against terrorism

Tom 13

Re: couldn't get over their unique roles in the American intelligence community


They didn't share data because the f*ck up Clinton appointed to oversee them wrote rules that prevented them from sharing it.


Same thing in Ft. Hood. Hassan was protected because it was politically incorrect to say a Muslim might just be a terrorist. It is completely laughable that this event is still classified as workplace violence instead of a Terrorist attack.


Tom 13

Re: unashamedly funded by North American

That would be unashamedly funded by Teddy Kennedy and his buds which are the same buds standing alongside you in this argument. Clean up your own house before blaming me. My grandfather on my Dad's side fled Ireland because there were too damn many idiots killing people.

Yes, there were problems in the intelligence community. Put there by Democrats who didn't want them sharing information without playing a tedious game of Mother May I in pursuit of people who changed phones more often than Imelda Marcos changed shoes. Focus on the wrong problem: amount of data collection and you can't fix the right one: empowering honorable people who are trying to protect the country to do their jobs.

Tom 13

Re: so a person that no-one would argue against monitoring

But that's where the problem is. You can't monitor the man you have to monitor his phone. Only you don't know which one he's using today so you have to monitor them all. And you know it has to be all of them because you know the drug traffickers use disposable phones for their work and his counter-measures are going to be at least as good as the drug lords. And yes, prior to the Patriot Act the courts specifically ruled the sort of roving wiretap you need for that sort of surveillance illegal.

Yes there were other problems in processing the data. Problems put in place by the same people who are now the loudest screams that we shouldn't be gathering as much data as we are. If the spies are gathering too much data to be effective they'll have to cut down. And you have to assume at least some of them are moderately competent or the whole exercise is pointless to begin with.

Tom 13

Re: data was steadfastly ignored by a large number of people.

No, the large number of people were preventing from reading that data and being able to connect the dots. A policy that was put in place by the very people who now claim we have to undo the current information sharing system.

That isn't to say the current system shouldn't be updated and modified. But both sides need to be treated with equal skepticism.

Tom 13

Re: there was no evidence whatsoever

That was the major opinion of the report, but other opinions in the report said otherwise. I was thinking the same thing until I read the contradictory claim in the news article.

Given the number of cases in which the collection has been upheld in the courts, the major opinions having overstepped their boundaries on that issue calls into question their objectivity on the effectiveness question. And that's beyond the question of: if you were the head of an intelligence agency and you had to report to a group of people you knew would leak confidential information, would you reveal sufficient details to prove the system was effective? Because if you do, the effective means will cease to be effective.

There is no question that when there is another terrorist attack, the spy agencies will be held to ridicule and burned in effigy for failing to protect the people (regardless of what motives the person noting it had in the report). That is precisely how we wound up where we are now. Not only should the agencies been able to gather the data, they had, but because of insane rules about information sharing they failed to connect the dots.

Now, there is a case to be made that because of the effectiveness of computers in hoovering up data that would be legally collectable were it done by people moves us into the realm where that data now needs to be regarded as protected even if it were done by people. I'd be willing to live with that change provided we make some other rational changes as well. The first of which is that we have to stop treating terrorism as a domestic policing issue and as an actual act of war that results in the same consequences as any other act of war.

Facebook will LOSE 80% of its users by 2017 – epidemiological study

Tom 13
Black Helicopters


Even email isn't really private messaging.

Neither is the phone network.

If you really want private messaging, it's back to the cloak and dagger stuff.

Tom 13

Re: Applying models...

Yes, there is a network-effect case. But there is also a viral effect case, similar to usenet. The more the spammers fill it up, and the harder it becomes to deter the spammers the more likely users are to move along. The problem for the corp behind FB is that those spammers are their cash flow, so if they can balance it, they can practically print money. But if they screw it up, the whole thing dies.

I'd ballpark it at 65-35 toward network effect.

Tom 13

Re: All I get is hot-young-singles-in-your-area ads

FB haven't tweaked their filters correctly yet. I got the same ads and I'm a fair bit older than you. Haven't been on it in months. I was only really on it for the Zynga games and they became unplayable; or more precisely, they became more tedious work than real work.

Tom 13

Nah, that just gets you a GooglePlex

and a possible audit from the MPAA to ensure you are paying them proper royalties.

Tom 13

Re: Seriously?

When I was in school, cut and paste meant getting out the scissors, cutting something out from a piece of paper (possibly a magazine) and then using the Elmer's to paste it onto another piece of paper or poster board.

Even when we did get computers, for the most part you still couldn't cut and paste, because everything was from a command prompt.

'Netflix bitch': CEO of vid-streaming site taunts HBO chief over results

Tom 13

Re: they have to start pleasing punters.

You don't have to start doing something if you're already doing it.

I have both streaming and DVD delivery (1 out at a time) and am in the US. Had it for over a year now and I'm generally happy with it. One of these days I'm likely to drop the DVD subscription because I'm just not that into most of the current Hollyweird releases, and the ones I do want to see I usually hit at the theater.

Mostly I use it to watch reruns of tv series without the commercials. From time to time I stumble onto something I hadn't heard about before and start watching it. Currently I'm working through Chuck. One of these days I may get around to watching the BSG reboot (too realistic gritty for my taste, I prefer the old one).

Judge shoots down Oracle's Solaris support 'trafficking' claim

Tom 13

Re: Support

Not quite. Terix is being sued for facilitating a sub, who is not an authorized support company and the sub is being sued for impersonating an Oracle Support company.

Don't think about it too hard. Sane people hurt themselves when they do. Most find understanding live-dead cats an order of magnitude easier.

Tom 13

Re: Actually, in Europe

I think he is mistaken in the US as well. That doesn't stop people who routinely buy and sell politicians from claiming otherwise to promote their business.

'I don't understand why they feel like they own the word CANDY'

Tom 13

Re: A little sympathy

Single real words should NEVER be trademarked. Applications for them should get a "thanks, for the money, rejected" notice with about as many words.

Sad part is, I'd be perfectly happy to have them trademark "Candy Crush".

Boffins measure 27 quantum states of light

Tom 13

Just because you buried one box doesn't mean both cats are dead.

IIRC, the box had an independent oxygen supply for the trip through space, just to ensure the wave form didn't collapse before the box was opened.

When ZOMBIES go shopping: 40m Target customer breach? That's NOTHING!

Tom 13

Re: Have I got this right?

If the POS terminal at the register was hacked, you're hosed no matter what. Card details and PIN, the bad guy has them.

Tom 13

Re: Have I got this right?

I don't think the malware was attacking the data storage. Remember, the reports say they also got people's PINs (needed for debit cards). Retailers might store CC info for the transaction in case the buyer disputes the purchase*, but they'd never have call to store the PIN.

*If the buyer disputes you need to be able to find a signed copy of their receipt or the CC company sides with the buyer. That means you'll want the CC number (probably by last 4 digits), the day of the sale, and the register where the transaction was recorded. Then you find the cashier and the right storage box to pull the receipt. Electronic records aren't usually enough. Online transactions will of course differ.

Tom 13

Re: How many???

Not misinformation per se and certainly not for the advertisers.

If it is overstated, it is only as is necessary to protect them legally. Let's say you think the bad guys only got 70% of the terminals in a store. Do you report only the 70%, or the whole store? If you report only 70% and it turns out they got 72%, you're really are on the hook for disseminating misinformation.

And other posters are correct, most people here use multiple credit cards. Right now I have two debit cards, and three credit cards that I can think of in my wallet. Theoretically I have another two at home on accounts I'm working to pay off because I misused them in the past. The accounts are in good standing, but I don't actively use them.

How much do you trust T-Mobile US? Enough to let it be your bank?

Tom 13

Looks like El Reg needs to pay for some US vacations

for their editing staff. They seem to be under the mistaken impression we trust our banks. The reality is, they're no worse than any of the other places we could store our money.

Also, given the article is primarily about Pay Day loans and check cashing services, the headline is highly misleading.

Frankly I'm suspicious of these groups who are constantly on a crusade against both services. The only time in my life I've used check cashing services was when I was in college. Going rate was 25 cents per check, I was usually cashing one from my mother valued at $25.00. Since graduating I have always had a job with direct deposit to my checking account. If you want one, you can get one. It isn't difficult. So it must be a cultural choice.

Candy Crush King went 'too far' when it candy crushed my app – dev

Tom 13

Re: Ah, you mean like Windows.

Yep, and Office, and Apple. And probably quite a few others I'm forgetting about at the moment.

Korean credit card bosses offer to RESIGN over huge data breach

Tom 13

Re: best industry practise?

The only practical answer to PIN cracking is a two independent connection model using the equivalent of a cypher pad. You contact the vendor, the vendor contacts the payment company. The payment company contacts you (via a pre-established secure method) with the key from the cypher pad, which you then provide to the vendor to complete the order.

You of course see the immediate problem: too complex for a typical user to implement the solution.

IBM's top brass forgo bonuses after drop in yearly profits

Tom 13

Does anybody manage using carrots instead of sticks anymore?

Sure, but first there have to be some carrots in the carrot bin. Right now all they have is sticks.

Tom 13

Re: Why minimal bonus is not zero

If your bonus comes as cash, yes it would be treated as income. At that level, I've never seen bonus delivered as all cash. A more typical structure is they give you the bonus in stock options, and pay you enough cash to cover the taxes on the stock options plus the taxes on the cash bonus.

What happens after that involves a lot of mucking about in hyperspace with accountants, lawyers, and waiters all haggling over stuff until the final bill for the meal is determined.

US card scammers pull $2m petrol heist

Tom 13


The attorney's office said that the four ringleaders in the operation will each face a catalog of 408 felony counts ranging from money laundering and grand larceny to possession of forged devices and forgery instruments.

Meanwhile, the nine people who acted as money mules in the operation will each be hit with two felony counts of third-degree money laundering.

And the sad part is, even if convicted of all charges, at most they'll serve a couple of years.

Judge sighs at 'whack-a-mole' lawsuits as Apple deals blow to Samsung

Tom 13

Re: So despite having a Samsung myself

I own neither, so I'm impartial. Apple's claim is laughable on its face and the PTO officer who approved it should be taken out back and shot immediately.*

I'm actually a quite miserable speller. One of the things I frequently go to Google for is to find out how to spell some word I'm completely mangling. They have always come up with the correct work. Adding characters for hitting the wrong key on a touchscreen is an OBVIOUS improvement and indeed was my immediate reaction on using my very first BB keyboard.

*No, he doesn't deserve the benefit of a trial. The only bribe I'm willing to accept is that he pays all the lawyers fees for both sides up front, plus all the court costs, and then trebles that and pays it as a fine. Cash on the barrel head only. If he does that, suspend the sentence and parole him for 3 years.

If you reckon Google will never tap into Nest's Wi-Fi thermostats, guess again

Tom 13

Re: Apple ... may know where I am, but Google doesn't.

Keep drinking the Kool-Aid kid, all the hipsters do.

If you browse the internet with you iThingie, as soon as you hit a website, Google knows it is you. If you have FB account, Google knows. And if you've got a FB account and you have it linked to your iThingie, Google knows. And given that, Google also knows exactly where your iThingie is too.

Tom 13

Re: Advertising!

You will be able to skip this add in [15 second countdown timer] to change the temperature on your thermostat.

Tom 13

Re: I have a gut feeling that all this Internet of Thingies will not end well.

You and a lot of other people, which is why so many of these projects have failed.

When I was a wee lad, I worked for a before-their-time outfit that was trying to build a house filled with the internet of things. Except back then DARPA was still playing with their internet thingie and the rest of us were calling Compuserve or some other local bulletin board with our 9600K modems. We had all kinds of cool gadgets and everything could talk to everything else if you wanted. I never could figure out why the fridge needed to be able to talk to the gas stove, but it could. The energy unit, that I understood. I had trouble figuring out why the washer and dryer needed to talk to the stove either, but in this day I could maybe see it popping up a text message on your TV that you only have 5 minutes left on the dryer so you really should gather the hangers and get your butt downstairs to hang up the laundry. Like I said the system was really cool, and unlike a lot of stuff released to day was being designed with future expandability in mind. And all it would set you back was an extra $35,000-$75,000 for a mid-sized house, depending on your exact options (the touch screen CRTs really drove up the price). You know, the ones that were selling for $150,000 to $200,000 back then.

Microsoft empties a can of BUG SPRAY on Visual Studio 2013, hands sticky result to devs

Tom 13

Re: Why the six downvotes?

That's the sort of comment I'd expect from a Linux Skiddy* and it doesn't sound good coming from them either. But at least the LS would have a valid point in that one is expected to search the internet for Linux fixes if it isn't already incorporated into the current release of the VOLUNTEER project. When you pay for it, you shouldn't have to hack the install to get it to work correctly. Yes, yes. I know: you've had to hack MS products since their inception to get them to work correctly, but history isn't the point here.

*Every OS has Skiddies, even Linux though their numbers are probably fewer both in absolute and relative terms when compared with MS.

Office 365 Microsoft's fastest growing business, ever - Microsoft

Tom 13

Re: How would you "sell" LibreOffice? Its free.

That's exactly his point. From a reseller perspective, right now there's no difference between him selling MS Office (he makes nothing and MS pockets the cash) and LO (he makes nothing and nobody pockets any cash). All he's got to sell is the customization afterward, which puts LO and MO on an equal footing, with maybe a slight revenge preference for LO.

Tom 13

Re: Fish in barrels @ I ain't Spartacus

I'm not your downvoter, but I suspect they are coming from people who think you paint too rosy a scenario for the cloud. I understand what you are saying: from where you sit the risk is equal or better moving to the cloud, you get more services so it looks like a win-win.

But that assumes the costs stay the same or improve over time. It seems short sighted to me. MS have a history of really screwing things up periodically. When you get hit with that in your cloud service, it could cost you your business. If I've got a data server on site, and I have a backup on site with another offsite, I've probably covered my bases well enough for a 6-10 person company. Anything that wipes out both copies of the tape has probably wiped out enough other stuff so my small business is pretty much toast too. Hell, me and the rest of the company might not even be around to worry about it. It doesn't have to be big and/or complicated. Controlling your own data seems to me to be critical. And once you move it to the cloud that is gone.

Tom 13

Re: just add calendaring and a free office suite.

For starters, calendaring is actually fairly difficult to do properly. It's one of the things MS actually did well in Exchange. They've switched us to Google services here at work. Their calendar may be fine for personal use, but it's total crap for enterprise because it doesn't have enough granularity.

Once you add the free Office -type app, the ISP is now in the storage business, which probably isn't their strong suit, plus they are now competing directly with big money players like Amazon and IBM who will be more than happy to stomp them out.

And the winner of the most reliable disk drive award is ...

Tom 13

@YevP Re: 120%

All from the same batch or purchased over time? From the way you answered, it sounds like at least two batches, but I'd like to confirm.

And thanks to you and your company for not only gathering but publishing the data. I suspect you hope to get fewer drive defects from the manufacturers, but as a consumer of drives I find it very helpful.


Tom 13

Re: only drives that I have seen fail

I've seen hard drives of all brands fail. Not many, and my observations are anecdotal, not systemic. Which is why this BackBlaze study is so useful to the industry. They are publishing systemic results.

Not completely controlled, but systemic. For instance, it could be that there was a manufacturing problem with one batch of drives to produce the 120% failure rate on that one group of Seagate drives that stands out in the results. But over time those should smooth out. And more importantly, it is real world data. If I were them, and I saw that sort of failure rate with a particular brand of drive, I'd probably put it on my Do Not Buy list, sort of like the HP Laserjet 1100 that tended to multi-feed in an office environment after about 2 years.

Amazon's 'schizophrenic' open source selfishness scares off potential talent, say insiders

Tom 13

Re: Amazon can't live without opensource

This is the heart of the double-edged sword of the GNU style license. Yes, if everyone using contributes back, everything gets better for everybody. But not all humans work that way. Some want to keep things secret, even when working from Open Source libraries.

The BSD style license incorporates that into the heart of its double-edged sword.

And the closed license protects itself from others using it completely but at the cost of eyeballs to look at the code as well as the efficiencies of distributed specialization.

You make your choices and you pay your bills accordingly.

FCC boss: I get knocked down, but I get up again. You're never gonna keep net neutrality down

Tom 13

Re: yet I must have an ATT phone line

That's odd. I know I'm very fortunate in that I live in an area with actual competition in the high speed broadband market. I have the choices of Verizon, Comcast, Dish, RCN, and a few others. AT&T isn't among them. In fact, you can't actually have an ATT phone line to your house, because all AT&T kept was the long distance business and it immediately had to compete with Sprint. It was the Baby Bells that got the local service and a temporary monopoly for local phone service.

If you don't have these basic facts straight, what else that you think you know isn't true?

Tom 13

Re: keep many competing companies from laying intrusive infrastructure

Horse hockey!

That may be the lie they told when they pitched it to the masses, but it was always about lining the pockets of the people who paid them.

You may not like the facts as I've posted them, but they remain the facts.

Tom 13

Re: The question has been is broadband ... "common carrier"

No, it's not.

The 1996 law defined what is a common carrier and what is an ISP. The FCC isn't allowed to change those definitions.

In your own words: Why is this concept so f**king difficult to grasp?

Tom 13

Re: so do the telephone networks

The rules for the telephone networks were written in light of the fact that from 1934 to the 1990s the government granted AT&T a monopoly in the telephone market. Sprint challenged it in court and won. The 1996 law was written to take into account the changing environment and to try to re-balance the mess the government made through its bad and unconstitutional legislation in the first place. Quite frankly, at some point the common carrier rules will need to be re-written as well.

Tom 13

Re: I haven't read the court's decision

Skip the decision, and ignore the court decision. Go back to the 1934 and 1996 Acts. Amazingly they are pretty clear for politi-speak. The court made no such invitation because the Acts do not authorize any such action.

Tom 13

Re: Appealing.

The FCC is not Congress. They don't have the authority to legislate. Congress has explicitly decided ISP =/= common carrier. The FCC was out of bounds, which is exactly what the court rule regardless of what it's decidedly disconnected head said.

Sony brings 4K shooting to the masses in weeks

Tom 13

Re: Speak for yourself.

You need to get your sarcasm detector repaired.

Clink! Terrorist jailed for refusing to tell police his encryption password

Tom 13

Re: what if his password was

Wow talk about desperate attempts to go for a straw man. No, no, no, and no. A password is just a password not a confession.

other than name, date of birth, and address

You seem to be suffering from some perverted combination of POW and law frameworks. The rules don't work that way. The place where thugs usually fall down is that once you speak on any of it, you are required to be truthful and answer all subsequent inquiries. You may be able to temporarily suspend an investigation by pleading the 5th, but once on the stand it's the 5th or everything.

A criminal record NEVER constitutes probable cause.

No, you're the one who has this wrong. Once convicted the police, the prison warden, even the guard can search [your] car, search []your] home, etc etc, every day for the rest of [the term of your conviction].

No, you are the one who is wrong. Once you have been convicted you lose almost all civil protection until the term of your conviction is expired.

Nobody on this planet is legally required to provide evidence...

No, YOU are dead wrong. You are not required to testify against yourself. You can be compelled to produce evidence. That's the whole point of a search warrant: it forces you to produce evidence against yourself. This is so basic it actually gives me a headache.

The only reason the IRS can get away with this is because filing an income tax return is officially declared a voluntary act, not compulsory.

The code I comply with reads:

Sec. 6012. Persons required to make returns of income

TITLE 26, Subtitle F, CHAPTER 61, Subchapter A, PART II, Subpart B, Sec. 6012.


(a) General rule

Returns with respect to income taxes under subtitle A shall be made by the following:

(1) (A) Every individual having for the taxable year gross income which equals or exceeds the exemption amount, except that a return shall not be required of an individual -


That sounds pretty mandatory to me.

Or perhaps you'll find this bit more convincing:

What if you fail to file?

The IRS may file what is known as a substitute return for you. However, as you well know, the IRS will not be looking to save you any money. In fact, a substitute return will not include any of the standard deductions your accountant would typically include in your return. Case in point, a substitute return only allows one exemption: single or married filing separate, so you end up with higher tax liability than if you would have just filed.


You really need to stop hanging out with Truthers, Birthers, and Birchers. It rots the brain.

Intel treads water despite drowning PC biz clinging to Chipzilla's legs

Tom 13

Re: Oooh ... they missed earnings by $0.01!

Headline I see says "treads water" which is in the $-0.05 to $0.05 per share range. What exactly is your issue?

Not a coffee drinker myself, but I'm told these days you can't tell the difference between defcafe and regular. On the tea front, I find several herbals are quite good.

Yahooligans! cower! as! COO! was! reportedly! SACKED! by! Mayer!

Tom 13

Re: Fooking Amateurs

I gots to know!

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019