* Posts by Richard 12

2581 posts • joined 16 Jun 2009

Red alert! Intel patches remote execution hole that's been hidden in chips since 2010

Richard 12
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Re: See!

Very funny.

The penguins are the ones who will probably save us, as they are the people with the expertise and the time to patch the unsupported hardware.

This is a time when we learn a lot about the various high profile vendors. How far back will they publish patches?

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M6 crowned crappiest motorway for 4G signal

Richard 12
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Re: Fun fact. -The toll road is useful

About relatively wealthy drivers, anyway.

Whether that data would be applicable to the general populace is another matter.

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Well, hot-diggity-damn, BlackBerry's KEYone is one hell of a comeback

Richard 12
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My guess is because they're thick and unreliable

A flip phone is necessarily much thicker than a slabphone, simply to make the two parts both physically strong enough.

For some reason, being "very thin" is an important marketing spec point.

Moving parts are much more expensive and break far more often than non-moving parts.

So a double whammy. I am disappointed of course, because "open to answer, close to hang up" is a beautiful and intuitive UI.

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Just how screwed is IT at the Home Office?

Richard 12
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Re: Two more disasters here.

Everyone on the desktop site clicks the "report errors" link.

It obviously isn't going to get fixed until Tuesday anyway, and I presume the obvious grammatical errors are due to the rush to the pub.

I note that the mobile site still doesn't have a "report errors" link. That is a shame.

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Richard 12
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Re: Mountains out of molehills?

Most of the UK airports did the same.

It's only the terminals that have been built since that have three, and frankly that bit of logistics is trivial - just board up the entrance to the Blue Channel, job done. This also gives the customs officials some more space, which they will of course desperately need.

The ferry ports are the real logistical nightmare, as right now there are no Customs at all - with nowhere to put them, and no time for them to do the job.

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Need the toilet? Wanna watch a video ad about erectile dysfunction?

Richard 12
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Actually its the Gubberment.

Labour, to be precise.

After an MP's daughter got electrocuted when she drilled into a wall in her kitchen and hit an unexpected electric cable (the cable was in a stupid place), they banned anyone from doing any electrical work in bathrooms and kitchens unless they have a note from their local council saying they can, or get a council jobsworth to look at it afterwards and complain that they used the wrong shade of white insulation.

You can change a bulb, or a socket for one of the same type, but that's about it. Swapping out a dryer is questionable, so no company dares risk it.

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Richard 12
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Re: air dryers - ugh

Indeed. The heat in a hot-air dryer isn't to dry your hands, it's to destroy the interesting things floating in the atmosphere.

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Richard 12
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Re: Bog Design

Airblades are horrifyingly bad. Clearly designed by someone who has no understanding whatsoever of the vagaries of the human form.

They only work if your hands happen to dangle at the right distance from the ground.

So anyone not roughly average height can't use them without painfully stretching or bending.

And they're literally impossible to use from a wheelchair.

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FYI: You can blow Intel-powered broadband modems off the 'net with a 'trivial' packet stream

Richard 12
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Every machine on the Internet is subjected to regular probing attacks by the myriad of botnets out in the wild.

Such attacks occur very frequently as scanning the whole of IPv4 doesn't really take that long when you have a thousand compromised hosts.

A decent router/firewall will dump them and the botnet component moves on without much incident.

A bad one gets owned by one of the various attacks attempted.

These are likely to get shut down until it moves on.

Better than being taken over, but very annoying.

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Richard 12
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Re: Can you disable IPv4 on these devices?

Virgin don't support IPv6, so it wouldn't get you very far.

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A switch with just 49 ns latency? What strange magic is this?

Richard 12
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Sounds like a hub to me

Doesn't a switch, well, switch?

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FTP becoming Forgotten Transfer Protocol as Debian turns it off

Richard 12
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Re: Windows

For small values of "support", anyway.

SMB is much easier to set up in Windows (and multi-OS environments).

You just tick the box labelled "Share folder" and follow the prompts to set passwords and user access rights.

Yet even SMB is basically deprecated for local file sharing, there are far better things now and the tools to set them up - in a reasonably secure way - are becoming easier to use.

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Richard 12
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Re: awkward to use?

While HTTP is "click on link in the browser", and HTTPS is "click on link in browser".

The link can even have text and images to explain what it is for, how to use it and why you might choose one link instead of another.

That human-readable metadata is extremely useful to everyone.

FTP clients have stagnated, they haven't become any easier to use for a decade. In fact they've barely changed at all.

FTP servers are worse, as they are hard to balance and hard to configure.

Worst, common implementations of client and server are subtly incompatible with each other.

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We're 'heartbroken' we got caught selling your email records to Uber, says Unroll.me boss

Richard 12
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Have you read the El Reg T&Cs?

I thought the bit about being powered by the blood of your first born was particularly apt.

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Richard 12
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Re: It's an outrage, I tell ya

The current EU case law is more or less that EULAs don't exist.

The really important thing to remember as an EU citizen is that it doesn't matter what the EULA says, as a consumer you cannot give up your rights. Ever.

So what they did may well be outright illegal. In the EU.

Outside the EU on the other hand...

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FCC greenlights small cell free-for-all in the US

Richard 12
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Re: Reasonable

A lot of law is based on the word "reasonable". It's been very well defined by case law.

Do a quick search.

Possibly the biggest one is health and safety law.

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Richard 12
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Re: Reasonable

Yes indeed, as a city who did that would find itself on the losing end of several expensive lawsuits.

Such permissions have to be given or rejected on reasonable grounds, and blanket rejections aren't reasonable.

This is the FCC saying "You can't drag it out until they give up. Do your damn job or get fired."

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US surveillance court declined less than 2 per cent of applications

Richard 12
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Re: AC Reality check

What's the scope of those?

For all we know, one of them could have been "Entirety of Facebook's database", another "All phonecalls between the US and Europe" etc.

As we don't know how many individuals were potentially affected, we know nothing.

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Would you believe it? The Museum of Failure contains quite a few pieces of technology

Richard 12
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Re: Betamax - Betamax quality wasn't actually that much better.

Sony have been wonderfully impressive at creating a good product, then strangling it in the market by stupid terms.

I think they might be world leaders in foot-gun production by now.

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Nuh-uh, Google, you WILL hand over emails stored on foreign servers, says US judge

Richard 12
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Re: @Richard 12 ... Yeah, but...

Do I really have to spell it out?

The parent company is breaking the law by not complying with a court order.

So, which law gets broken?

Does your boss force you to break the law or do you force your boss to break the law?

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Richard 12
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Re: Yeah, but...

The Law doesn't work like that.

Have an example:

You work for Company A Ltd in the UK.

Company B Inc in the US owns all the stocks in A. That makes A a wholly-owned subsidiary.

Company B orders you to break the law in the UK.

What do you do?

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Cuffing Assange a 'priority' for the USA says attorney-general

Richard 12
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El Reg - can you stop reporting on this cockwomble?

The idiot lives for publicity.

Ignore him and eventually he'll get bored and stop running from the law, face his rape allegation, be convicted or not, and then he can go to prison for jumping bail.

Detention isn't deliberately self imposed and doesn't offer access to Twitter.

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New MH370 analysis again says we looked in the wrong places

Richard 12
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Re: Here we go again

It's called science.

New experimental evidence changes the model.

MH370 isn't a unique tragedy unfortunately. Aircraft used to vanish without a trace quite often in the early days of commercial flight.

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Richard 12
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Re: Easy, once we drain the ocean

Simples - just send the water to Mars the New Netherlands.

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Code-sharing leads to widespread bug sharing that black-hats can track

Richard 12
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Re: open-source tutorials are a security risk says Trend Micro

In fact practically everyone here can attest to the fact that it is not just a horrific fallacy with no evidence to support the claim, it's simply wrong.

Closed source code is full of snippets copied out of Stack Overflow et al, as everyone who deals with closed source code knows.

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Richard 12
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Re: Duh!

The flipside is that it's often quite hard to find documentation of the appropriate error checking and/or sanitisation for a lot of calls.

"Error checking omitted for clarity" is a common phrase in official examples.

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Astro-boffinry breakthrough: Loads of ingredients for life found on Saturn's Enceladus

Richard 12
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Re: From the article...

It's an inaccurate and imprecise headline.

What they mean is "evidence that life exists close enough to us that we can feasibly investigate it within the lifetime of a single researcher."

But that's not very snappy.

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Richard 12
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Re: How did Arthur Clarke know?

Clarke did his homework. Very much so!

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Richard 12
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Re: Cost kills that idea. Not monetary, the mass cost.

Presumably the feasibility studies found that it didn't really work out, as a Mars trip has among the lowest delta-V requirements and they didn't launch in 2007 when the payload was highest.

Secondary payloads get aborted if the main payload becomes marginal, so they have to be essentially disposable.

SpaceX rapid launch capability changes the game though.

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Richard 12
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Re: Remember Miller

Miller didn't run his experiment for very long.

I expect far more interesting things come out if you run it for a few hundred years.

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Richard 12
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Re: The moons of Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus could supply new discoveries for centuries.

Cost kills that idea.

Not monetary, the mass cost.

Every probe needs a "bus" - thuster pack, generator, heating/cooling and communications.

All that is a nearly-fixed overhead.

The individual instruments of a deep space mission weigh very little, so it's a far more effective use of a mass launch budget to stick as many instruments as is feasible onto each probe.

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Apple nabs permit to experiment with self-driving iCars in Cali

Richard 12
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Re: Not The Only One

Or just hold sufficiently vague and general patents to convince the lawyers of those actually making the cars that it's cheaper to pay a licence fee than to go to court and prove that the patents don't apply or are invalid.

Lost of companies make plenty of money that way, without any of the risks involved in having real product in the field.

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Burger King's 'OK Google' sad ad saga somehow gets worse

Richard 12
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Still haven't got my rat burger :(

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Half-baked security: Hackers can hijack your smart Aga oven 'with a text message'

Richard 12
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Re: Security

Indeed, it does not matter if it takes the device several seconds to verify the command.

The PIC 16F series I was buying almost fifteen years ago would happily do it in the time budget available.

Even with the internal oscillator.

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Richard 12
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Re: so much automation

A "normal" Aga is never off.

Presumably they realised that might be bad for home users gas or electric bills, and isn't energy-efficient in any sense of the word.

Horrible things.

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Richard 12
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Re: Can you control the oven temperature?

Agas are the worst oven known to man. Incredibly inefficient unless you also need to heat the room all day.

The temperature is pre-set during installation and cannot be changed.

On/Off is all you get on an electric, and the gas ones don't even have an indicator to say that they are burning.

Stayed at a place that has a gas one. It went out one day, we didn't realise until it was too late for it to warm up for dinner.

So we went to the pub.

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Back to the future: Honda's new electric car can go an incredible 80 miles!

Richard 12
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Seems foolish

Something that short-ranged is a second car, not an only car.

And that means cheap.

The putative household has a "proper" car they use at weekends and for shopping, and the short-range electric is for the daily commute.

If it costs as much as a long-range electric, nobody will buy it - better to buy the long range one as an only car.

This is why G-Wiz, the Renault thing and the other "road-legal quad bike" things exist.

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Boeing 737 turns 50

Richard 12
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Not many aircraft that fit other aircraft inside

SuperGuppy and Beluga notwithstanding.

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Forget Mirai – Brickerbot malware will kill your crap IoT devices

Richard 12
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Re: Telnet really?

Most of the vendors think that as well.

Heck, apparently camera dildos have the same firmware pack as IoT security cameras.

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Richard 12
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Re: telnet??!!?

Perhaps it is time to push an update to Busybox to make SSH the default instead.

Anybody already on that mailing list?

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Richard 12
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I have a Kirby vacuum cleaner.

Well, carpet maintenance system as it does rather a lot more than just brush & vacuum.

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Eric S. Raymond says you probably fit one of eight tech archetypes

Richard 12
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Re: forgotten archetypes

That's an entirely different axis.

Incompetent Castellan, Incompetent Lawful Architect, Incompetent Chaotic Neutral Sharpshooter...

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Uber responds to Waymo: We don't even use that tech you say we stole

Richard 12
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Re: Google wins this one

That would explain the 5th.

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An echo chamber full of fake news? Blame Google and Facebook, says Murdoch chief

Richard 12
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Re: Meanwhile "Real" News

Was either Assad or the Russians, as nobody else had the technical ability to do it.

I really doubt that the Russians would because Putin is clearly not an idiot.

Assad on the other hand has definitely done it before, and -

importantly - got away with it last time.

He got away with it this time as well, as Trump helpfully told the Russians the target, giving plenty of time for Assad to move his assets away.

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Ex-IBMer sues Google for $10bn – after his web ad for 'divine honey cancer cure' was pulled

Richard 12
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Re: Advertising

Rather higher than $88.

The FDA might also take an interest, those costs are astrological*.

* Like astronomical, except the Gods actively attack you.

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iCloud extortion racket nowhere near as epic as we thought it might be

Richard 12
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Re: How many jaz drives would that take???

They back then up in /dev/random

Everyone's files are there, even files they haven't created yet!

The restore process takes a while though...

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Customer satisfaction is our highest priority… OK, maybe second-highest… or third...

Richard 12
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Re: The problem is the Apple iPhone

macOS has similar problems.

I recently had to do a full wipe and reinstall of OSX Sierra because it couldn't handle the idea that a Mac might have more than one user (so much for the BSD base).

It sat saying "About 5 minutes remaining" for four hours.

Then I gave up, restartes it and the second time it completed the "About 6 minutes remaining" process in a mere 45 minutes.

I assume it has failed to download something and stopped completely, but there was no indication in the UI whatsoever.

Even when it was making progress the second time - no hint that it had managed to do anything at all.

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Richard 12
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Re: In the main....

Unfortunately it's really hard to delete such WiFi fron your phone, as they no longer list known access points when not in range of them.

Bastards.

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Twitter cofounder to sell chunk of his stock for personal reasons

Richard 12
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Minority just means less than half. Could still be a big chunk, don't know or particularly care how many he had at the start of the year.

Smart to liquidate when you can of course. Has Twitter ever made a profit?

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Boeing-backed US upstart reckons it'll be building electric airliners

Richard 12
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Re: Reality check time?

Might not be paraffin, I would guess probably not.

There are a variety of biofuels, synthetic fuels and (my favourite) fuels manufactured by genetically-modified bacteria.

One of those will hopefully scale.

GM bacteria are particularly nice as appropriate varieties can make petrol, diesel, kerosene or any other desired hydrocarbon directly - though significant technical challenges remain, such as getting the stuff out of the sludge fast enough not to kill the bacteria...

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