* Posts by Allan George Dyer

1746 posts • joined 12 Jun 2009

Amazon Echo: We put Jeff Bezos' always-on microphone-speaker in a Reg family home

Allan George Dyer
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"Alexa, we're away for 2 weeks, if you hear anything please record it and alert us"

Thank you for registering with "BurgleMe", your details have been shared with burglary service providers in your area.

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Nippy, palaver and cockwomble: Greatest words in English?

Allan George Dyer
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Holmes

Re: Wainscotting

"preservative" because they were used to keep safe from STDs, particularly syphilis.

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Allan George Dyer
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Bovine excrement! There are plenty of excellent English obscenities, but a lack of erudite invective in teeming hostelries.

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Job alert: Is this the toughest sysadmin role on Earth? And are you badass enough to do it?

Allan George Dyer
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Joke

Re: "You should be able to lift 25 pounds"

Ah - Someon's failed the citizenship test.

NEXT!

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China, for one, welcomes our ROBOT SPACE ANT overlords

Allan George Dyer
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Boffin

Stupid question...

Can you see the L2 Lagrange point from Earth? Or are they planning a double-relay, with a satellite in Earth orbit and one at L2?

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'Traditional' forms of thuggery decline in UK, cybercrime on the rise

Allan George Dyer
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Re: 2,057 described as "computer virus"

If you go by the technical definition of a computer virus (~"program that copies itself") then the respondents are probably mostly wrong, but if you loosen the definition to the layman's "computer virus" = "program that makes my computer do bad things" = "malicious software", then they are right. All those stupid "helpers", "quick starters", and entirely pointless "shortcuts" can be classified as malicious... e.g. a "quick starter" that doesn't is a trojan, a toolbar that was installed without explicit permission has committed "unauthorized access to a computer".

The survey is revealing a huge area where people feel they have been wronged, but the law has great difficulty in addressing the issue.

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‘Insufficient evidence’ makes Brit cops drop revenge porn probes

Allan George Dyer
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Re: Defence

Which is why handling this under Personal Data Protection principles would be more appropriate and more effective:

Personal data must be fairly collected for a declared purpose - intimate snaps would be assumed to be for enjoyment of the lovers involved

Personal data must be destroyed when the purpose has ended - when the relationship ends, the intimate photos must be destroyed

Appropriate security - keep them secure, no let-out for leaving unencrypted data lying around.

Photos taken for publication would be covered by an appropriate contract.

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LOHAN chews the fat with US TV station over Spaceport's FAA-ilure

Allan George Dyer
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Re: "...start work on the space elevator..."

No, it's just that they've already had the cable cut to length.

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Dot-gay bid fails again: This time because it is too gay

Allan George Dyer
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Is ICANN showing contempt?

I recall a story about a Japanese Prime Minister who justified imposing a higher tax on imported rice because Japanese had a different alimentary canal length. He was demonstrating his power by giving an explanation that was totally unbelievable - 'not only can I refuse your request, you do not deserve a credible explanation'.

Or maybe the Knights that say Ni are a suitable comparison?

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PHONE me if you feel DIRTY: Yanks and 'Nadians wave bye-bye to magstripe

Allan George Dyer
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Facepalm

Re: Tracing paper and a roller

"They are asking for the billing zip code for the card"

So I'm secure because I live in a place without zip codes?

They obviously don't value the tourist-in-hire-car customers.

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How long does it take an NHS doctor to turn on a computer?

Allan George Dyer
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Paris Hilton

Re: I still can't get my head round this one

"microwave in the staff kitchen that looked like it was there to launch a space programme, it has so many dials, settings and options, but they all managed to use it"

But, I would guess, only to the level of "press these three buttons to re-heat my lunch, do it again if it's not warm enough". What are all the other functions, anyway? With the right option, will complain about the pain in its diodes all down its left side?

Last time I bought a microwave, I bought the cheapest because the user interface was limited to two knobs, "power" and "time", plus the door open button.

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Hurrah! Doctor Who brings us a bootstrap paradox treat in Before the Flood

Allan George Dyer
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Boffin

Re: Did anyone else notice ?

Well, yes, it was obvious. But can anyone with a music/psychology background explain why Beethoven's 5th and the Dr. Who theme share the same basic motif, but I never noticed before? Am I just slow? Or am I remembering an alternate past, where they were different?

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US Treasury: How did ISIS get your trucks? Toyota: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Allan George Dyer
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Re: Hmmm

Because they bought the guns and ammo from that nice NRA guy at the county gun fair?

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Factory settings FAIL: Data easily recovered from eBayed smartphones, disks

Allan George Dyer
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Headmaster

Re: ...its the only way to be sure

That's Mordor.

One does not simply mis-spell Mordor.

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Terror in the Chernobyl dead zone: Life - of a wild kind - burgeons

Allan George Dyer
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Headmaster

Re: Hmmm

Mosquitoes are the Apex Predator!

I blame the primary school textbooks... "This is a food chain". Is web such a difficult concept? Here?

Love the radiotrophic fungi BTW.

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Google Chromecast 2015: Puck-on-a-string fun ... why not, for £30?

Allan George Dyer
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What is this mythical beast?

"a spare HDMI port on your TV"

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Search engine can find the VPN that NUCLEAR PLANT boss DIDN'T KNOW was there - report

Allan George Dyer
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"risk is probability times consequence"

But a cyber attack is not a random event so "probability" is replaced by two questions:

1. Is there an attacker that wants to do this?

2. Do they know how?

Caroline Baylon has admitted state actors can answer "yes" to 2, so it depends on political will.

Time to open a box of airgaps.

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Marijuana from heaven: Bundle of blow bombs bow-wow's boudoir

Allan George Dyer
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Re: You could mostly have gotten jail time

Getting caught by the police might be the best result for a windfall drug dealer. I imagine any existing local dealers would be a little annoyed at a new guy undercutting them, and if it happens to be the outfit that dropped the package in the first place, they could get really angry.

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Official: North America COMPLETELY OUT of new IPv4 addresses

Allan George Dyer
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Black Helicopters

At last, this will REALLY speed up IPv6 adoption...

Or not.

It hardly seems like four years since I had the same thought about address exhaustion in this region. Since then, even home routers come with IPv6 support. The local Internet Society has regular events saying how everyone should switch.

Yet, last week I was contacted by a sales droid of a local ISP, "please switch to our business broadband", "what about IPv6?" I asked, and had to wait for senior sales droid to reply, "why would you want that?".

Either local ISPs are completely clueless, or they are desperately hanging on to charging increasing rates for tiny IPv4 static blocks, and want to charge a premium rate for IPv6 "early adoption" before the party's over.

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Robber loses heist case after 'evil twin' defence, gets 60 years

Allan George Dyer
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Right and Wrong? Re: Not completely mad

"everyone has an evil twin, mine keeps buying bacon and putting it in my fridge"

You have a warped sense of right and wrong. Obviously, he's the good one.

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It's alive! Farmer hides neglected, dust-clogged server between walls

Allan George Dyer
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Missed the important question...

What was the uptime?

And can someone compile a table of uptime, system, software, location and additional hazards?

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Britain's FBI wants 'Five Eyes' cosy hookups with infosec outfits

Allan George Dyer
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Re: So what would you do to improve matters?

Many would say that the current legislation already goes too far in allowing mass data collection, that more checks and balances are required to prevent from being mis-used.

Secondly, if law enforcement can't keep up with the quantity of data, collecting more isn't a benefit, it's a liability: more to categorise, analyse and protect against illegal disclosure.

Even if I accepted that everyone working in law enforcement today, and everyone in authority over them, was snow white, collecting everyone's inbox is an ongoing liability - tomorrow we might get a leader that says, "If you're not with us, you're against us. And, if ISIS can execute people for having the wrong religion, so can we - Check the inbox archive!!".

A SENSIBLE approach might be to reform current legislation, collect less data and focus on better targeting and analysis.

Face it: it's an unnecessary evil. FTFY.

(I do so love the irony when people write, "you are wailing and gnashing your teeth because someone might go trawling your Inbox" and then post AC.)

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Allan George Dyer
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Joke

Obligatory joke

"Can government take action to systematically remove malware from everybody's computers without them knowing it?"

No, Major software developer would object when their products were deleted!

(Substitute name according to your prejudices and fanaticism)

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SPOOKY new Pluto snaps will make the HAIR RISE on the back of your neck

Allan George Dyer
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Holmes

Re: One Way Mission to Dwarf Planet X

It's more than a coincidence, those 50's SiFi movies were a HOAX! They only pretended to shoot them in deserts and studios on earth, the really secretly sent the entire film crew to Pluto!! This was a cunning plan to fool THE ENEMY that we were far more technologically backward than was the case!!!

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American Airlines: TITSUP computers ground US flights

Allan George Dyer
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Headmaster

Re: "Major Airports"

Not a misnomer at all, it is a port for air traffic, and, offhand, I can't think of a superlative other than "major" that wouldn't sound odd ("transcendent airport", "dazzling airport"...?).

At least they avoided the wheel-related puns, or maybe I spoke too soon.

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Murder suspect alert? Nah: Scammers fling cop-style malware

Allan George Dyer
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Terminator

Re: Numpties

Unless the message says, "wanted for the murder of recipient's name", and it's a genuine warning message from the newly-established Time Travel Division.

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Allan George Dyer
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Headmaster

Relevant to what?

"The relevant policing organisation is actually called the City of London Police." which is not to be confused with the Metropolitan Police Service. Did the fake message actually specify the crime was within the Square Mile?

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How did jihadists hack into top UK ministerial emails if no security breach took place?

Allan George Dyer
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"no virus checker will know about it until" - true, but it's all about defence in depth. Anti-malware suites nowadays use multiple techniques, including emulation and heuristics to evaluate the behaviour of code. Hey, this app hooks the keyboard API AND makes connections to an external site AND is trying to install itself silently as a permanent service... are you suspicious yet? Plus, if you scan at the gateway, seeing an executable that does all that being sent in is definitely something you want to block.

Doing all that in less than 2kb is also suspicious - what developer cares about bloat nowadays?

Are you kidding about that key scrambler website? You're suggesting that the BBC uses it, but the site doesn't claim that, it quotes BBC News, but that might just be a journalist quoting the developer's own press release. That key scrambler might be useful as an additional line of defence, but preventing malware running on your system in the first place is a lot higher priority in my view.

Disclosure: I sell anti-malware products and services.

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Australian opposition wants laws to protect private smut

Allan George Dyer
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Joke

Rights!

Yeah, they really knew what they were doing when they wrote the Australian Constitution:

"1. You have a right to trial by a jury by your peers

2. You have a right to see fat drunken chicks who strip down to their underthings and parade around"

BTW, if you haven't seen enough fat drunken chicks, remember the Department of Seeing Fat Drunken Chicks is there to help you.

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As we all know, snark always comes before a fall. Mea culpa

Allan George Dyer
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Re: A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing.

Well, normally the value of nothing is low, but if it is packaged in an interesting shape, it can be sold as a vacuum flask.

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Doctor Who returns to our screens next week – so, WHO is the worst Time Lord of them all?

Allan George Dyer
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Incompatibility!

How can John McAfee be in the poll for next Doctor, let alone actually (currently - hoping for an outbreak of sanity here, guys) in the lead!? One of the core character traits of the Doctor is his never using a gun, whereas John, by all accounts, considers them the solution to all problems.

Now, John McAfee as the Master... yes, he's got that air of fun and hedonism that sucks you in until the ultimate plan is revealed is unredeemable evil, plus the capricious, random acts of violence.

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GCHQ wants to set your passwords. In a good way

Allan George Dyer
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Facepalm

Re: @oldgrumpy

@Youngdog - "You don't remember the name of your first pet? What kind of monster are you!"

I think the problem is not re-using the name of your first pet...

"Well, first we called him Fluffy, but after two weeks we changed to Pooh and the next month it was Cerberus..."

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Plods waste millions keeping their arses covered and ears open

Allan George Dyer
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Coat

Re: Five pound trousers?

If you search on alibaba, you can order brand-name clothes in bulk direct from the sweat shop manufacturer at surprising low prices, with your own logo added.

I'll take 5,000 coats, and can you do a reflective POLICE across the shoulders?

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Don't want to upgrade to Windows 10? You'll download it WHETHER YOU LIKE IT OR NOT

Allan George Dyer
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Linux

"possible to remove the Windows 10 update files using the Disk Cleanup utility."

It is also possible to remove Windows 10 update files by installing Linux. Do it quickly enough and you can avoid downloading them too...

Hmm, penguin or troll?

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As McAfee runs for US President – we ask a crucial question: Will Reg readers back him?

Allan George Dyer
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Coat

Re: I would rather drive a nail through my foot

Where do I contribute to the "Buy McAfee a nailgun" fund?

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The internet's Middle East problem: Who is going to do something about Whois?

Allan George Dyer
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Joke

Re: IMHO

If I'm trusting a site with money then I expect it to have a valid TLS certificate, issued by an organisation I trust, like... Oh bugger!

As we have two completely different systems, Whois and TLS, that both attempt to address aspects of the same problem: identity on the net and fail spectacularly then I predict the only possible way forwards is to develop a third solution that neatly combines the flaws of both while addressing an entirely different aspect and failing.

Icon? I wish I were.

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Batteries on wheels are about to reshape our cities and lives

Allan George Dyer
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Lemmings

"21st century energy companies will own fleets of self-driving ‘batteries-on-wheels’ that will literally follow heatwaves ... the same way sunflowers follow the sun"

I'm imagining a Norwegian power company getting very annoyed when their entire fleet, fully charged from the midnight sun, "goes lemming" and drives en-mass into the North Sea at the start of winter.

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British killer robot takes out two Britons in Syria strike

Allan George Dyer
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Re: You take the high ground and I'll take the low

@Mark 85 - We have the rules that apply to everyone because of what we are; what you or some politician says they are is not relevant in deciding who the rules apply to.

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Sexy sock puppets seduce security suckers

Allan George Dyer
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Trollface

Non-sexist security researchers?

So the attackers think that security researchers totally accept intelligent women in good jobs and therefore won't become immediately suspicious of a profile featuring an attractive woman?

Or the attackers think security researchers are absolutely starved of any female contact, overriding any suspicion?

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BOFH: Power corrupts, uninterrupted power corrupts absolutely

Allan George Dyer
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Joke

"(Look it up on YouTube if you don't know what a Nike is.)"

So that's why Justin Gatlin runs like a rocket...

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IoT baby monitors STILL revealing live streams of sleeping kids

Allan George Dyer
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Boffin

Re: Why do you need one?

@gw0udm "The human race has survived thousands of years without such things."

Well, millions, in fact. But there is a distinction between the race surviving, and particular individuals experiencing evolution in action. Gross sentimentality, I know, but if you're happy with "the human race" surviving, my genes have an advantage.

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HMRC breaches job applicants' privacy in mass email spaff

Allan George Dyer
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Mushroom

"All external mass mailings should be authorised, approved and need at least 2 people to authenticate to a system in order for it to proceed."

And they must use two keys, turned simultaneously in keyholes too far apart for one person to reach, and the recall code is a permutation of the letters O,P,E.

"How I Learned To Stop Worrying And Love Mass Mailing"

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The future of IT is – to deliver automation. Discuss

Allan George Dyer
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Obligatory xkcd...

Is it worth the time?

But

Automation (love the mouse-over)

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So, was it really the Commies that caused the early 20th Century inequality collapse?

Allan George Dyer
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Re: Money has to go somewhere

"And I'd love to know what happens if everyone in the same apartment block tries to exercise their gigabit speeds at the same time."

i) No-one gets gigabit speeds because everyone uses WiFi within their flats, sharing the available bandwidth with their neighbour's wifi.

ii) You blame the website for being slow

iii) The ISP persuades you to upgrade to an even faster connection.

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Google makes it official: Chrome will freeze Flash ads on sight from Sept 1

Allan George Dyer
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Paris Hilton

Re: At least somebody out there read 'The Art of War'

Fantastic... Does it also run the malware on the landing page it reaches, and confess to the RIAA/Police for accessing illegal content?

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Allan George Dyer
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Dissappointed...

The headline gave me hope that "not running flash" would become mainstream.

Anyone for a sweepstake on the time of appearance of first flash ad that tricks the "non-important" rule? In minutes? No? In seconds?

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Google Cloud in nine-hour storage SNAFU

Allan George Dyer
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Re: FFS!

I understand now. Which would you rather tell your boss:

1. "There was a disc failure in the RAID array and a second drive failed during the rebuild, so we're restoring from backup, it'll take 9 hours..."

2. "It's Google's fault. Look, it's affecting all their other customers too."

As a bonus, if the boss is still angry, tell him you can do it in-house, but you need a big budget (remember to move on to a new job just after spending the budget).

There are only two three certainties: Death, Taxes and System Failure.

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Using SQL techniques in NoSQL is OK, right? WRONG

Allan George Dyer
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Trollface

Any relation to Uri Geller?

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3D-printed robot hand grabs Dyson award for UK

Allan George Dyer
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Facepalm

Re: "affordable prosthetics for all”

I'd give my right arm for an affordable prosthetic...

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Twenty years since Windows 95, and we still love our Start buttons

Allan George Dyer
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Flame

Nostalgia...

I love that song,

"You make a grown man cry"

I tried to avoid 95, and kept to OS/2 or NT whenever possible. 95 was just another GUI over DOS. When the filesystem is still FAT, long filenames are just a kludge, the real filename is still 8.3 characters. Plus, whoever thought that allowing long filenames AND keeping special meanings for extensions AND hiding known extensions by default was a good idea should be forced to clean up every virus infection this enabled, worldwide, while crawling on broken glass</rant>. Sorry, breath deeply, clam down...

On the plus side, 95 did kill off boot sector viruses... they didn't support 32-bit drivers, so when it booted, Windows was forced into compatibility mode. Everything worked, apparently normally, except the CD driver disappeared (most CD drives depended on 32-bit drivers). Users complained about that, so the virus was discovered and eliminated. Easy to diagnose, once you knew.

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