* Posts by Juillen 1

237 posts • joined 22 Jun 2009


Chaos feared after Unix time-zone database is nuked

Juillen 1

Come on...

The 'Atlas' contains a set of fact. Exact reproduction of these facts in the same format would breach copyright (i.e. taking sentence extracts, and re-publishing diagrams etc.).

The company did not originate these facts, so would have pulled them from elsewhere. Quite possibly many other elsewheres.

So, one programmer uses a reference book to obtain public information as a quick and accurate reference to produce software that does something else, not competing with that first product.

This is simply reducing the formatted facts back to simple facts (the database), which could have been garnered from the original sources (or any other source that collected them).

So, if this case were to succeed, it would essentially say that any compiled source of freely available facts could not be used (without payment) to compile another set of facts. If facts could be copyrighted (which they can't) then I'd understand (in law) how they could think of starting a lawsuit up, but as it stands, I can't.

If the author hadn't put attribution to what he thought was a good source of compiled information, instead of doing the job from scratch, nobody would have been any the wiser. He tried to do the honourable thing and place attribution. For his efforts, he gets a set of lawyers on his tail.

Net effect, something good is taken away by someone with nothing to put it its place. Hopefully this story will pass around, getting the company a good old PR kicking for being idiots.

Ten reasons why you shouldn't buy an iPhone 5

Juillen 1

92 mile hike...

Well, on a long trek, I turn the phone OFF. If someone wants to talk to me, they can leave a message on the voicemail, or drop a text.

When I'm feeling like a bit of communication, I'll turn it ON for a few minutes to see if I've got signal, and if so, if I've got messages.

I've gone two weeks with that strategy, got all the messages I absolutely needed, and made all the calls/texts I needed.

It's called 'thinking'. Yes, having a replaceable battery is 'nice', but a bit of forethought about what you need will see you through better than extra hardware.

Amazon revamps E Ink Kindle line

Juillen 1

The touch and fire aren't being released in the UK, or Europe..

Amazon's Silk looks creepily Phorm-ulaic

Juillen 1

Apart from the new wi-fi model, none of the other new models are getting an intro to Europe or the UK.. Shame really, as they were looking interesting..

How gizmo maker's hack outflanked copyright trolls

Juillen 1


I can't be arsed to have tweets and stuff on my screen while I'm watching a movie.. But I'll be damned if someone tells me that I couldn't if I wanted to.

Science, engineering PhDs to drop by a third

Juillen 1

Wide vs Narrow.

Industry partnerships can fund a wide variety of subjects, but yes, they do need to improve their bottom line.

Where they've identified some research areas that can improve their profitability, they'll invest (and some of those are very unexpected).

Universities can afford to do more blue sky science, as there's far less importance on this research being profitable. Though from this, you find the odd one has commercial applications, and then industry picks it up and delves deeper.

Using the different focusses from different groups is the key. Relying only on one group or focus is a bad way to go.. Losing the wider scope is a problem.

Fujitsu strike to hit back-office across UK.gov

Juillen 1

Pay rise..

Got to love it where the Private sector is out striking over a low pay rise, and the public sector is still in and working with a 2 year pay freeze..

Hey Commentards! [This title is optional]

Juillen 1

There isn't. I read it as a humorous repartee, where the joke is truly on those that take it seriously.

Quarter of NHS data collection to go in red-tape slash plan

Juillen 1

At last..

Someone's trying to identify the signal from the noise..

BOFH: Beer, shinies, death by fire, rats IN THAT ORDER

Juillen 1

And no..

Copy/Paste between apps on screens. No moving apps from one screen to another. No moving the one mouse and keyboard easily between them (without hitting KVM switches).

Processing power isn't neccessary on Admin desktops; that's what remote screens to the servers are for (what do you mean, you don't have servers doing your heavy lifting?).

Desktop resilience? What? They should be easily swap in/swap out (nothing stored locally; everything on the servers, replicated and backed up).

One monitor, switchable through a rack of server boxes. One admin desktop box with loads of monitors.

Permissions? Remote desktop, and su (or equavalents).

One box, many monitors for admin work.. Works for me!

After convincing the budget holders that it's the way to go, I no longer have to 'retire' the beancounters to make sure that their machine/monitor count matches the head count in the department.

Will the looters 'loose' their benefits?

Juillen 1

@ John G...

I call straw man on that.

The law works (sort of) because it's mainly reasonable. If you had a hand lopped off for littering, I can guarantee you there would be a huge outcry, and possibly even full civil unrest.

This is more equivalent to "You have to pay a fine for littering", and knowing that. Then someone tells you "Because you dropped so much, this is now under this type of offense, and you now have to pay 5 times the amount".

To the average person, they'd look at the offender and go "You ass. Serves you right, having to pay for the clean up.". You knew there were consequences of a particular nature, and you've just learned a valuable lesson; You up the ante, and so do other people.

As a general rule for getting through life without too much hassle, or falling afoul of the law, I find "Try not to be a dick" works for me.

Juillen 1

There's an old law on the books..

From medieval times that states:

If a froup of more than 35 people gather together for the purposes of destruction, they can be considered an army, and hung for treason.

Juillen 1

@Danny 5

The documented circumstances of behavioural change are significant and bounded; premeditated choice also enters the equation to find yourself in a situation where it could happen.

For rioting and looting: If the country were to grind to a halt, and we were all starving to death (literally), the I strongly suspect that I may be part of a mob in the end (after all, civilization is just a few days full feed from anarchy).

However, with no good reason to riot, and choosing to take luxuries (even kids from the riots have been saying "We're just doing it to prove to the rich and the police that we can"), theyr'e showing they're nothing less than oportunistic scum. There were no great modifiers and circumstance to this; it was premeditated choice.

Videogames caused riots says plod

Juillen 1

Oh come on...

This is a copper being more than a little taken aback at all the violence and uproar..

There's no "Video games cause this", this is more "They're a bunch of scrotes who'd love to be violent, just like in some of the video games".. There is, perhaps a truth to this.. And it's because they're violent scrotes, not because the video games caused them to be that way..

Sony distribution centre engulfed by fire

Juillen 1

You can lead a horse to water..

But you can't make it drink.. Or for that matter, learn..

There's a vast swathe now that know they don't have to work, because all their mates are on the dole, and doing ok.. There's no incentive to better themselves, because they'll always be supported, and nobody is allowed to tell them what to do because "It's a free country" and they have their "Uman Rightz".

They have an education that many countries would envy, and yet they choose not to take advantage of it because it's uncool and difficult.

My mum used to work in a local school.. And there was a creep in there of kids choosing more and more not to work, and be disruptive.. Career choices became more "Well, there's the dole, innit?", drug dealer (a lot of them knew the game quite well by that stage, and made a hellish amount of money; turning up in the latest bling), the gals were convinced there was always prostitution, and they'd be happy selling themselves because they thought it'd be fun to be laid and paid for it "And there's always 'Pretty Woman'..".

Life got increasingly hard for the ones that wanted to work in that environment due to bullying.. And the bullies were the ones that got all the attention (because you couldn't tell them off, you had to bribe them). Tell them off, and they try and get you for abusive behaviour and lodge complaints. It became a badge of cool to cause the most disruption and have no comeback.

And people are surprised that this just spirals into later life?

We've sown the seeds of this (as a society) with good intentions. We're now paying the price..

Google's Facebook: It rocks, but who cares?

Juillen 1

Generally agreed..

But, I work at the end of a commute, and I live in another country to a large set of my friends I've had for years.. Not so easy to drop round to someone several thousand miles away..

There's a place for social network sites, same as there always has been; they're a tool.. Use them as you need to.

Apple ordered to pay $8m over playlist patents

Juillen 1

The biggies

Don't mind playing this game. They have war chests to cover the temporary losses, and they'll only recoup that by suing another big company for lots of money for an infringement of 'their' patent.

While this leaks money to the lawyers, it keeps the merry-go-round of IP law going, with a reasonably predictable 'small' quantity of leakage (legal costs).

It does mean that the small companies can be smacked hard with these same costs, which is enough to put them out of business just trying to defend themselves, and it's these same small businesses that could have the "next big idea" that could overturn the biggies in a year. Far better for them to have reasonably predictable outgoing than lose the company when someone comes up with the better idea. If they can cause the new company to fail, they can buy the better idea for peanuts.

NHS told: freeze all Microsoft spend

Juillen 1

The point is..

The plan was to not keep paying for an 'upgrade path', when all the latest upgrades were on the table already.. That's a year's worth of not paying anything to Microsoft..

So that's already helped.. Then there's the whole "bulk contract" thing.. If everyone is under a bulk contract, you can wave a huge sum at them, which is still cheap for the organisation.. Big enough sum that it's hard for a business to walk away from, yet is still a good deal for the buyer.

I'm thinking that the "facts" aren't something you really have on this, just a few soundbites..

Moderatrix kisses the Reg goodbye

Juillen 1

Into the wild blue yonder..

Good luck out there! May the times be fun, the mischief leave you (largely) in one piece and the gutters be comfy when you wake after the "investigative evenings out"..

Bloke ordered to remove offensive numberplate

Juillen 1


If the Government is so worried about not causing offense, then they'd surely redo the OGC logo (http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/01/19/ogc_logo/).

Far worse, and more graphical than this number plate..

Wonder if offense goes into international? Asked a colleague today why he was grinning so much while playing with iSCSI.. Turns out that LUN is cantonese for Penis..

So next time you see a number plate with LUN on it, complain.. Let's see the recall rate on those!

Juillen 1


Odds on, you can take offense at almost anything. There should be a fair balance between "grow up and get a sense of humour" and "offensive".

If someone wants to make a bit of an ass of themselves by a humourous numberplate, then fine.. We just need a bit of common sense.

If it's a word that's ever appeared in a song title/band name, and been allowed to be published to the world though the mainstream media without being permanently banned as offensive, then surely the word isn't offensive. Same with being broadcast on TV before "the watershed".

There's an excellent one in my area of the world "H1 2 LAY". Gives me a smirk every time, and brightens up the day.

C'mon DVLA. Grow a pair, and a sense of humour.

Dungeon Siege III

Juillen 1


Story is usually the mainstay of any RPG (I was actually fond of the storylines in Guild Wars; I largely chose to play it as a single player RPG with henchmen).

DS3 was lacklustre in this, though not offensively so. An innocuous storyline of "fight the evil/misguided person"; you know what you're getting early on.

Then comes the ability to configure it to your play style. It tanked hard on that (no ability to remap keys.. In this day and age? You're kidding right??)..

Saving: This game uses Save Points.. You what? Really?? This is an evil spawn of the days when there weren't the resources to have regular saves when you thought you needed them (i.e. someone turned up at your door inviting you out for a beer; you don't want to have to say "Hang on for 20 minutes while I find a save point for my game").

Graphically.. About 5 years behind the curve. It's pedestrian at best, but hey, that's the icing on the cake stuff.. I can live with that as long as story, configuration comfort and the rest live up (which they don't).

Definitely agree that the looting is just rubbish. There's not the diversity of the high end gear (is there really any high end gear apart from the last purchase point, and to be honest, that's not that great).

It's a braincandy game that's not truly offensive (apart from the consolitis of the save points and lack of key binding config), but definitely not worth the "new game" price. Pitched at around £15, it'd be a fair(ish) deal, but at around £30? Not really.

Has UK gov lost the census to Lulzsec?

Juillen 1


> What possible value could any body derive from the data?

You're joking? Identity theft heaven, all that data, who you're related to, so on, so forth..

Sony preps refreshed PS3 and talks down PS4

Juillen 1

Easy advancement..

Would be to put back the "Other OS" option and put in PS2 emulation.

NHS Trusts in the dark over CfH licence transfer

Juillen 1

Most things..

Are pretty simple. So what if the NHS uses SQL Server. That doesn't stop Libre Office (data connectors, anybody)?

The conversion of Word & Excel to Libre Office would be the interesting bit (not sure how compliant macro conversion is in Excel).

Most docs however are pretty vanilla.

8m health records go walkabout

Juillen 1


A postcode covers a very small segment of houses.

In those houses, there will be a limited amount of people with the correct ages and genders.

This information is generally available from a variety of places (council records etc).

Given the spread of data, you'll be able to determine the date at which the data was captured, giving you the definite ages of people now.

This kind of info is highly embarrassing for people who wish to keep past mental history away from the limelight, and other health information.

It's no great shakes to uniquely identify someone from a list like this.. Unless it's all been correctly pseudonymised, such that the laptops only contain tokens for the postcodes (and possibly ages) that can only be accessed by coupling the research back to an originating data set as the final point of calculation.

Dam Busters dog dubbed 'Digger'

Juillen 1

You realise

You're absolutely right about it being about the squadron, not the dog..

Which is why people are rather irate about so much bowing down to Political correctness over a historical fact.

The name means the dog was black. As there weren't many black people in England at the time (certainly up north, and in Wales, where my folks were from, they'd not seen a black person until their late teens, which as a while after the war).

That is the historical fact. They were referring to the fact that the dog was black.

Sure there was racism around then. All over the world, from all sides. That's also a fact.

The film isn't about "casual racism", it's about mentioning an anachronistic word for a colour (the same as in a period drama, merry people are still referred to as being "gay"; this doesn't offend any of my homosexual friends, who are quite bright enough to get the context). There is nothing racist about it. Only in the brains of those who are looking for it.

Juillen 1
Big Brother


Pretty much told us about it.. One day, we're going to have to remind our political classes that 1984 was actually a warning, rather than a "How To" manual.

Juillen 1
Thumb Up


Can you imagine them not wanting historical accuracy on that one?

Entire London 2012 Olympics' cultural events database held on Excel

Juillen 1

Alarmingly common management practice..

Don't bother to work out what you really need to do the job, put a load of things down there that you already know, and specify that they're the tools to do the job.

Sod doing things the right way, we've always done things THIS way, so it must be right..

Juillen 1

I'm an "Overpaid database guru"..

And to make things simple, I run regular SQL courses. It gives people the ability to work in their own schemas/databases, and how to do basic testing.

What it gives you is the understanding of set theory, how it applies to a job, how to filter in ways you'd never thought of, yet will save you days of playing around.. How to do multiple levels of processing, without the possible corruption of copy/paste issues.. How to link your lists together (if you have multiple ones, and would find one from elsewhere relevant in your new list), and how to do things right.

It takes me 2 days to convert a complete newbie into someone capable of handling all that, and learning how to improve themselves with a little bit of mentoring. I've got massive productivity, accuracy and efficiency gains in some departments because of it, and the users love it (it's not rocket science).

These days, half decent office skills should include SQL if you're playing around with much data. Excel has its use, but use the right tool for the job.

Juillen 1

RE: How is that extensive list relevant?

No, Access was developed to allow something to fit on the desktop of a single person, and store some basic data with a nice little data entry/reporting tool built in.

If you're going to store data running a multi-million pound event, then I think SQL Server if you're using MS tools...

Sandi Toksvig puts the 'n' into cuts - on the Beeb

Juillen 1


Oh, just your opinion, therefore it must be the truth. Fair enough.

They're politicians, which says a lot about them generically. And it's also actually true.

Virgin Media frustrates customers with 'intermittent' routing blues

Juillen 1

And I was thinking..

That this was their 'acceptable use' limit kicking in. I get to download a few gig at full pace, then it throttles back for the long haul (I seem to remember reading way back that they did that instead of charging you shed loads for "extra bandwidth usage").

Juillen 1

Could it be...

The packet inspection stuff going in for legislation?

Tragedy nurse's boyf fined over medical records abuse

Juillen 1

The grounds

Beneath his chair?

TomTom sorry for giving customer driving data to cops

Juillen 1


Faster speed doesn't mean huge differences in noise. Tractors are noisy at any speed, as are busses etc.

30mph isn't there to give anyone a quiet night's sleep. As you're talking rural roads, there's very little traffic anyway as a rule. The limit came about because someone generically looked at the type of road it was and said "Oh, they should all be (x) limit.". Or maybe even looked at it on a map and said "Oh, it should be (x) I think.". There's a lot more talk, but not much difference in scientific approach between those quotes and the reality.

I've no idea where you get the idea the original poster wants to zip around at any speed.. They seem (and statistics bear it out) that most people drive sensibly at a speed the road is safe at. This would be the reason that the law surrounding speeding has the 'grey area' where you get the speed classes seriously expanded upwards. Because it's not wildly unsafe, you just can't upset the "Anti-Speed lobby", because it'll be all over the press, and you'll have a PR nightmare. The racetracks are usually in inner city places on estates (statistically speaking).

100% behind you about the relief roads though.

User data stolen in Sony PlayStation Network hack attack

Juillen 1

More like..

Tesco decided to put such onerous searches at the checkouts (cashiers going through your pockets etc.) and refusing to take all credit cards apart from Tesco validated ones, and stop taking cash.. Then some people work out a way to make the self scan accept their regular credit cards, or cash.

Later, someone works out a way to elevate this and utilise it to force Tesco networks to send off all the data (including credit card details that Tesco stored in plain) to some nice remote place where it could be harvested.

Your analogy doesn't quite fit the general shape of what happened.

Anonymous hacks Sony PS3 sites

Juillen 1

You don't get it..

Because you possibly haven't thought about it?

You sound like the kind of person who is all for the extension of copyright (because, like, dude, it's all about the IP man). Despite the fact that this is actual theft from the public domain (getting it legally sanctioned is a tactic worthy of the robber barons of old).

Realistically, Sony aren't protecting their IP (nobody is copying it, nobody is repackaging it and claiming it as their own). What they're trying to do is make your purchase of an item an effective lease (which they don't really push home in consumer friendly bites, probably because most people aren't really interested), where they try and dictate what you can do with what you've bought.

Want to hit it with a hammer? Fine. Want to place a bit of solder in it? Not fine.

Advertise something (I bought a PS3 because it supported Linux/other OS, which I thought was a great idea, so purchased by putting my money where my beliefs are), and then remove the functionality later? Now that's making a mockery of consumer relations, and fair dealing.

When you look at this dispassionately, a company has sold an item, on the merit of performing tasks A and B.

The company then decides it doesn't want you to do A anymore, so removes that functionality from the device, allowing you to do either A or B (and if you do B, you'll never be able to do A again). This reduces the value of the item to everybody affected. Company does not offer restitution for the devaluing of the product, and the reduction of functionality.

Now, a person comes along, and says "This is unfair. I bought to do A and B, and I will find a way to do A and B". This person works out how to do both A and B again, restoring functionality to that initial agreement you made when you purchased the item.

This restoration to the original terms of the deal lands the person in court with life destroying fines and a criminal record.

What's to get?

Adobe Photoshop Express 2.0

Juillen 1


Got a whole bucket of clangers (literally) dolling up the place.. A happy blast from the childhood.. And great to see 'em out and about!

Men at Work lose Down Under plagiarism appeal

Juillen 1

Killing creativity...

When small parts of something that occurred 50 years ago can stop current creativty in its tracks, there's something VERY wrong with the system.

Stop sexing up IT and give Civil Servants Macs, says gov tech boss

Juillen 1

Read from a certain angle..

There may be truth in what the guy recommends. However, there's very little detail as to why he considers this.

Without seeing the real plans.. Think we're all in the dark as to the intent behind the phrasing..

Play.com: Only customer emails lost in data breach

Juillen 1

Don't mind so much...

If it's passed on for the explicit purpose that the original agreement was for (they can tell me about Play.com deals etc., and status updates on orders I make). If I ever found one about other products, then sure I get uppity (I got uppity; I key email addresses to vendors, so this was very much an anomaly).

My rule #1 on the net is "Everyone can be cracked". All you can do is decide where to put the risk to get what you want to do done..

Play.com spam points to malware downloads

Juillen 1

Now why...

would you think a company that employs a PR company do to its marketing would furnish them with all the credit card details of all the subscribers?

Do you hand over your date of birth, address, phone number and national insurance details when you buy a pint of milk with cash?

BAA outhouses 200 IT workers over to Capgemini

Juillen 1

Works fine until..

Something goes badly wrong, and the question is asked "who can fix this with the in-depth knowledge of all the systems and how they work".. When the answer comes back "the people we outsourced, who have now gone", and the cost of lack of local knowledge becomes apparent (increased outages/downtimes), then it doesn't look so rosy.

Outsourcing is a very cost effective option, right up until the point it isn't. Then it really smarts.

Microsoft 'paid Nokia $1bn' for WinPho 7 deal

Juillen 1


So you like WinPho7. Great for you. I don't, and don't consider it the best platform out there. That's purely subjective, and I never deny people points of view on subjective matters.

So, how can iPhones be cool when 'everyone has one' (by everyone, I assume you mean a significant segment of mobile phone users, not everyone as in everybody, mobile phone user or not)? How can surfboards be cool when all the surfers have them? Hmm.. Conundrum. Could it be that 'Cool' isn't related to how many people use something? I use mine as a dive log, gas mix aide memoir and weather checker. No fart apps in sight, and it does what I want. I rip my own CDs to whatever quality I like, and don't buy through iTunes. When I first purchased one, I did a spec of what I wanted on a phone, evaluated all the possible candidates, and settled on the iPhone as being a little more of what I wanted than the other candidates. If this approach is being "a sheep", so be it. I call it getting what I want, and what works for me best.

Android: Weird that most of my non-tech mates use Andriod, and love it (subjective opinion there is that it's highly polished, and well integrated, completely contrary to your opinion). You have an open store, which is subject to this malware, but there again, any 'unmoderated' app store is subject to the same. All phones will likely be subject to malware, with attack being based on the share of the market they've obtained (Android, being successful will be attacked a lot. WinPho, assuming it remains an 'also ran' will not be attacked so much in probability, though it's likely just as vulnerable).

All in all, you seem to be saying "This is my subjective opinion and speculation, therefore it's fact". It's not.

Sinclair ZX81: 30 years old

Juillen 1

Birthday drinks!

I'll dust off my old ZX81, and raise a glass or two in its honour...

It's been about 20 years since I last fired it up, but hey.. Time to experiment again, and see if it'll work with a modern TV..

Takes me back!

Kinect connect rate outstrips Sony PS3 Move

Juillen 1


Appeals to those of us who enjoy a good game, but hate being a little on the lardy side (which I'm still slightly guilty of).

It's a bit of casual fun (without STDs) with a good bit of energy usage, and a good little workout.

Great fun at parties too.

ECJ gender ruling 'could throw insurance into turmoil'

Juillen 1

Speaking as a male..

I find this to be yet another stupidity in the name of "Equality". If the actuarial models show that there is a distinctive probability bias between male and female with respect to risk, then that is likely to be the truth. Simple statement that "Men and Women must be equal in all things" is just blindness, pure and simple. They aren't. They differ. Live with it.

I'm happy with that bias if there's a mathematical proof that it exists, as that's more likely to be true than the nonsense that spews from a politician's wish that all things become equal by fiat.

Intel: 'PC makers took the light out of Light Peak'

Juillen 1


You get the message that the game needs the DVD inserted for DRM checks...


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