* Posts by Robert Carnegie

2598 posts • joined 30 Sep 2009

Help desk declared code PEBCAK and therefore refused to help!

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Nursing Acronyms

Phil Hammond the comedy doctor has stated that funny descriptions of patients become less funny when you are explaining their meanings during a court case.

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Mm, sacrilicious: Greggs advent calendar features sausage roll in a manger

Robert Carnegie
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Re: And....

Yeah, I was thinking your digestion will be spurlocked after (less than) thirty days of pies.

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Teensy weensy space shuttle flies and lands

Robert Carnegie
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Re: How teensie weensie exactly?

The picture in Reg is not actual size? Aww.

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Pixel-style display woes on your shiny new X? Perfectly normal, says Apple

Robert Carnegie
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"If you'd like to "learn what to do" if you type the letter "i" and it autocorrects to an "A" with a symbol, click here."

Have you tried walking into the sea. http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php/1912

(Or, turning it off and on again. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_IT_Crowd )

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Landlubber northern council shores up against boat-tipping

Robert Carnegie
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Re: One of these days...

It probably costs you more than £2.50 to drive to the council dumping facility. You're making a big objection to a small charge on what presumably ends up being expensive and unecological landfill somewhere.

Come Brexit we shall need to produce more food inland anyway, so, stuff your landscaping, and Dig For Victory and potatoes.

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Don't be a turkey: Help Linus Torvalds finish Linux 4.14 before it ruins Thanksgiving

Robert Carnegie
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Surely too late?

Perhaps I misunderstand, but isn't it a question of how many bugs are left in release candidate 7? If none to speak of, then an rc8 won't be needed - but if bugs are there then they ought to be found and fixed, and not included in a final release. So it's your duty to spoil Linus's Thanksgiving if you can by finding those bugs.

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Spare me the confected 'Innovation Theatre' that is hackfests and their ilk

Robert Carnegie
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Too. Much. Information.

about your series of tubes.

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Reaper IoT botnet ain't so scary, contains fewer than 20,000 drones

Robert Carnegie
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I thought you meant a botnet of flying drones...

And now nobody knows where they are...

Resting on my roof and brute-forcing my wi-fi...

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Humble civil servant: Name public electric car chargers after me

Robert Carnegie
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There was a johnny in the street and I parked next to it.

That would be slang for "a gentleman's prophylactic contraceptive".

I don't remember whether "john" is UK or US slang for a prostitute's client. That would be who had left the prophylactic in the street.

Worth cruising around for? It depends whether you get a charge out of it.

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Uber's revolting sexism, the movie

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Could have been worse ...

Uber does limos but I can't testify to the actual quality of UberLUX (Limousine Unbelievably Expensive).

The title is real, the interpretation may not be.

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HMRC's switch to AWS killed a small UK cloud business

Robert Carnegie
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Joke

Curiously,

HMRC now seems never to have heard of my "Glamazonian Women" model agency, which is pretty convenient :-)

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Sarahah anonymous feedback app told: 'You're riddled with web app flaws'

Robert Carnegie
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Re: While I'm here - Sarahah?

They are privacy focussed so you cannot get in touch with them.

In the bible, Abraham was told by an angel of God that he and his wife would bear children. They were in their nineties and she laughed so hard that her false teeth came out. Then she said, "Wasn't me", but it was, so God changed her name to Sarahah.

Some of this actually is in the bible, some I made up.

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Google slides text message 2FA a little closer to the door

Robert Carnegie
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I think 2FA by text works by sending a random code as a message to your mobile number. You must input this code in your process of logging in, but you don't have to send a text back?

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You can't find tech staff – wah, wah, wah. Start with your ridiculous job spec

Robert Carnegie
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Re: "Gambler's Fallacy"

This is Bayesian, yes? But the probability that your five-heads coin is crooked depends on the prior probability of you obtaining - accidentally no doubt - such a crooked coin. If they are very rare then you are probably just looking at luck and a fair coin.

I expect without checking that it's physically difficult anyway to make a coin which favours heads over tails, except of course by printing heads on both sides of the coin which is rather a giveaway. Of course, making sure that when the referee inspects the coin, they aren't inspecting the one with two heads, is just a matter of dexterity.

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Full-fibre ISP Hyperoptic clocked over mock doc schlock shock

Robert Carnegie
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Sending out a fake contract document looks like possibly more than just advertising naughtily. I'd send PC World around to sort them out.

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Oz military megahack: When crappy defence contractor cybersecurity 'isn't uncommon', surely alarm bells ring?

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Relax ..

One civilian newswatcher's impression from a series of wars where the U.S. had allies is that U.S. forces early on test the commitment of said allies by shooting some of them dead. If that is put up with, and it usually is, then so will a lot more be, e.g. Abu Ghraib (until the photos get out).

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Robert Carnegie
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"Isn't uncommon"

The hypothetical Star Trek fan web site I run from my bedroom may have lax security like that (so does Starship Enterprise evidently, see "takeover of the week", at least it means that Kirk, Spock, Uhura and Chekov can break in themselves and take it back).

A real-world security industry resource should be held to a higher standard. So I hope this incompetence is, so, uncommon in this sector. Unless we declare war on Australia - then I hope they're all idiots of "Three Stooges" level.

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'Open sesame'... Subaru key fobs vulnerable, says engineer

Robert Carnegie
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Re: This won't be addressed

It's fairly easy to attach a small package of electronics to a car to do mischief on its own. Spider-Man would do it using his special spider web that lasts for an hour. Indeed he's been using electronic "spider-tracers" on people as well as vehicles for decades - the device makes his secret spider-sense buzz.

Oddly though he tends to ride on the outside of buses, trains, and private motor vehicles to get around, when he isn't swinging on web-lines around town like an urban Tarzan with lianas.

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Grant Shapps of coup shame fame stands by 'broadbad' research

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Coup shame fame?

One evening I tuned into Russell Brand's show on Radio 2 - mostly an easy listening music station - and he was chatting to guests about Plato and the school of Socrates. However, politics is difficult, and telling people not to vote, as a protest, really doesn't help. Come to think, Socrates got poisoned by government decree, so, bit of a blind spot there as well.

I was told that Boris Johnson isn't as stupid as he seems but I wasn't given supporting evidence, and obviously there's an awful lot of room between "as stupid as he seems" and even "traffic warden". There is however a kind of moral stupidity about where and how to ride a bicycle, which women to sleep with, and how to coordinate a party line with the prime minister, that he seems to have a lot of. I think he intentionally shams being intellectually deficient to disguise his full awareness of being a horrible manipulative bully, and enjoying it.

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Software update turned my display and mouse upside-down, says user

Robert Carnegie
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Re: I wonder...

"Personal attention" from someone with a track record of twisting things the wrong way around, requires careful consideration.

I suppose you could put a large arrow and "THIS WAY" on it.

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Apple's iOS password prompts prime punters for phishing: Too easy now for apps to swipe secrets, dev warns

Robert Carnegie
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Re: One way ...

For this solution on iOS, you wouldn't need to protect against web hacking the secret image that the system uses in its own dialogs, because it isn't being transmitted over a network.

You might need to protect it from the phone's camera seeing a reflective surface in your room where the secret image can be picked up, but that's a different challenge. Maybe turn off the camera when the password dialog is displayed.

Also, of course, there's the touchscreen / accelerometer problem.

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RDX removable disk has ransomware protection begging to be bypassed

Robert Carnegie
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Re: There was something newsworthy there

I suspect the selling point of this product is that the disc write-protect setting itself is also write-once read many - once you make a disc read-only, it stays read-only. But I don't know this. If it is, then I recommend buying the deluxe edition of the software, that includes the "Are you sure?" prompt. :-)

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It's 4PM on Friday, almost time to log off and, oh look, Disqus says it's been hacked

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Announcement not particularly clear

We know that Disqus lets you use an account with Facebook, Twitter, or Google to log in to Disqus. I think in fact you may or may not also have a password, because I think I got the process wrong and set my Google password as the password for Disqus too, which isn't the same thing. I've now pre-emptively changed both of them to a formula of Leters78 which I've then forgotten, but I wrote it down in my diary of secrets.

So:

If you log in to Disqus with a password then it may have been leaked, although protected with salted SHA1, and you have to change it.

If you log in to Disqus using Facebook or whatever, then the leak includes your Facebook name (plain?) but not any password.

Or it may be both. If you see what I mean.

At https://haveibeenpwned.com/ you can input an e-mail address (plain disqus login) or user name and see where it has been leaked from, not counting what you just did :-) At the moment this may be showing all of Disqus's users and not only as of 2012, since people are claiming that they joined later and are being shown as included in this leak.

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Hey, IoT vendors. When a paediatric nurse tells you to fix security, you definitely screwed up

Robert Carnegie
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Are we sneering at pediatric nurses? If we are doing that, then why?

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Legacy clearout? Not all at once, surely. Keeping tech up to snuff in an SMB

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Drink the Cloud coolaid

Register's readership may love the idea of pulling in consultants to advise on this sort of thing, but if there already are in-house staff, they probably already spent a lot of time thinking about how to do this stuff - and they are committed to the organisation like consultants aren't. In Dilbert cartoons, for instance - which is not the SMB case - the consultant, usually "Dogbert", either tells very client to buy the same thing, or finds out what in-house staff think is needed, and pitches that. But they get believed by mnagement because they're the consultant.

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Vibrating walls shafted servers at a time the SUN couldn't shine

Robert Carnegie
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Joke

Re: Tivoli blues

Now I've skimmed Wikipedia's article in English about the Copenhagen fair which indeed says that "In Norwegian and Swedish, the word tivoli has become synonymous with any amusement park", although the generic term in Denmark is "disneyland". :-)

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Robert Carnegie
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Re: Tivoli blues

I think "Tivoli" means a fun-fair / "amusement park" but not in English? Machines to entertain people riding on or in them, driven by electricity. Basically similar to the problem of the lifts, but dynamically more complicated.

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US yanks staff from Cuban embassy over sonic death ray fears

Robert Carnegie
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Snopes says it's unlikely.

http://www.snopes.com/do-sonic-weapons-explain-the-health-diplomats-cuba/

A virus going around maybe?

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IKEA flat-packs TaskRabbit to crack assembly code

Robert Carnegie
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Some furniture makers assemble their product before it's sold, and probably do it better than the owner ever could. Cars... I don't know if a self-assembly automobile or "kit car" is even legal now.

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Congress battles Silicon Valley over upcoming US sex trafficking law

Robert Carnegie
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Re: "Two wrongs don't make a right." tl;dr.

I look forward to a law that forces Donald Trump to stop tweeting and maybe also deports his wife, not particularly because justice would be served but only because it would be funny to hear about.

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AI slurps, learns millions of passwords to work out which ones you may use next

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Password Creation Rules

Random non-repeated consonants, a couple of digits, a symbol if some idiot system insists. Then convert your consonants to a phrase to remember. For instance Gchqnsa04 - "God can hear quiet nuns saying Angelus." (No, A isn't a consonant.)

A class of password that maybe does need to be reset is the shared one. You may have ceased to employ somebody who knows a lot of your important system passwords, whether they were supposed to know them or not. Just routinely changing these passwords protects against this.

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Google India launches payment service that sends money as sound

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Is sound really the best way?

I think "audio QR" is an incorrect or novel term. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QR_code doesn't mention a version in sound, and Google of "audio QR" initially produces web pages about "how tu put an audio file on the Internet and then make a QR code that finds that file and plays it".

As I understand it, QR is specifically a format for a two-dimensional image which contains an encoded data file. You scan the image, decode it, and you have the file. Very commonly, the file contains a URL which is the address of further data. My weekly bus ticket now is a QR code on paper; it may or may not be a signed data file which represents a valid ticket for the current week - also presumably there's some tracking to prevent me selling photocopies of it to friends: if more than one person seeming to be using the same ticket then you get stopped. Having said that, I probably shouldn't flash it around at other times in case someone photographs it. Of course a criminal could just steal my actual ticket...

"audio QR" evidently is an ultrasonic data standard which similarly transmits a file, and it may not even have a proper name in English (one that isn't embarrassing). It needs electronic audio equipment to send and receive it but it doesn't need a visual display or printer or camera, so maybe that works better in India. It's probably pretty fast, and, being ultrasonic, it won't easily be recorded by a third party or send over actual phone lines, which filter down to spoken-word frequencies. And tapping it may do you no good anyway if it's like my bus ticket but only actually valid during the split-second that it's transmitted.

My basic impression of India from many many miles away, but watching it on television, is that it's d--- noisy - from (not) watching films like "Gandhi" and even before you consider the background music as well. On the other hand, slightly more reflection tells me, accurately or not, that lots of India is miles and miles from anywhere. No doubt the developers of the "Tez" dispenser have both of these situations in mind.

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BoJo, don't misuse stats then blurt disclaimers when you get rumbled

Robert Carnegie
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@HmmmYes

A slush fund / insurance for farmers, the EU may be. Let me inquire: do you eat food?

Even producing a product that everyone needs, farming isn't a great way to make money when your production is at the mercy of weather, pestilence, and the Berkeley Hunts literally riding roughshod over your goods in production in pursuit of what is now theoretically an imaginary fox. Pokemon Go with added horse crap.

Subsidy uses tax to keep farms running to put food in our supermarkets whether each individual farm has a good or a bad year this year, which sounds smart to me.

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Robert Carnegie
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Technically right?

Maybe I misread: I thought this wasn't Register saying that Boris is "technically right", it is Boris saying that Boris is "technically right". And he isn't.

The sticker price of British membership of the EU is/was, let's say, £350 million a week. At the same time, the EU spends money on benefits to British activities such as agriculture, so the money comes back to Britain.

That isn't the "rebate". The rebate is that we got a perpetual discount on the membership price, theoretically "thanks" to Mrs Thatcher but let's face it she probably spent the money on wars and abolishing British industry.

So there isn't a £350 million cheque being written to the EU in the first place. It's £275 million, which is still handy money but a lot less.

You can see why a careless or stupid person would think that the EU costs Britain £350 million that's the price tag. But it's not what we pay. Why a more intelligent and better informed person would keep saying that it's £350 million, is, clearly, that they expect to benefit by lying. For instance, by keeping up the lie, some people may believe, or may choose to pretend to believe, that it's the truth after all. Although it isn't. And then there's the "appearing to be careless and stupid" thing, that you acknowledge if you admit the mistake

I say Boris Johnson isn't as stupid as he seems, and that's rather frightening.

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VMworld schwag heist CCTV didn't work and casino wouldn't share it

Robert Carnegie
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Pictures or it didn't... ah.

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Noise-canceling headphones with a DO NOT DISTURB light can't silence your critics

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Whilst I've toyed with the idea...

I cycle with Radio 4 on, but I put it off during manoeuvres that require undivided attention in case Boris Johnson or someone gets me wound up at the wrong moment. Doesn't help if Boris Johnson is cycling in my line of sight, but what can you do? Actually I have a few ideas and that's all I'm saying. (Only joking. Mostly joking.)

As for the "red alert" indicator (I've been watching "Star Trek Voyager" lately, they probably use 24th century red LEDs because theirs are on most of the time), you'd do better with either magneticable "SOD OFF" printed discs to slap onto both earpieces, or, wear your bicycle helmet at your desk, and people won't want to talk to you.

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Sure, HoloLens is cute, but Ford was making VR work before it was cool

Robert Carnegie
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Unclear?

I feel unsure whether the designers started out or went on sitting in a wooden model of a car, or viewing a virtual car through headsets, or, both.

Red Dwarf's "Back to Reality" episode comes to mind; so does the episode "Gunmen of the Apocalypse", but that is not polite to mention and I do so only so that you don't.

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Cops' use of biometric images 'gone far beyond custody purposes'

Robert Carnegie
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I don't know if it actually happens and how often, but in Ben Aaronovitch's novels about London policeman PC Grant - special skill, he's a wizard - they routinely look up someone's driving licence photograph, on home visits they phone-photograph any personal pictures you leave on display... PC Grant describes this as "cheating" but only because he can do it and I can't. It may also help that he is effectively boss of the Magical Crimes Unit afar as computer access goes because the actual boss is Merlin's great-grandson and doesn't know how to work the things, either HOLMES or Watson.

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Get out your specs: Java EE's headed to the Eclipse Foundation

Robert Carnegie
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So -

What then - "Java: Deep Space Nine"?

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How alien civilizations deal with climate is a measure of how smart they are. Just sayin'...

Robert Carnegie
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So

If we detect a Class IV civilisation, we don't try to communicate - because it won't be there for long enough.

If we detect a Class V, we ask how to be Class V.

And we hope they don't follow the first rule, because we are Class IV.

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Top tip, hacker newbs: Don't use the same Skype ID for IoT bot herding and job ads

Robert Carnegie
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Can't say

He hasn't said anything that excludes being 13. ICBW, I think he may be mistaken about the age of criminal responsibility. 13 is the age for personal data to be held by web sites without a lot of user protections, for which reason many services only let 13 and overs join, to avoid the obligations.

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Crypto-busters reverse nearly 320 MEELLION hashed passwords

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Black vs white vs grey

I don't see a reason to prevent me from using password "tliuwsusuoeucp" because someone used it in 1997 on a web chat site that was subsequently hacked.

Currently I use Randomuniqueconsonantsthendig145 which works in most places except where some genius thinks I need to use a non-European punctuation symbol as well. Which isn't on my keyboard or doesn't work through the web interface. And which happens on my work account. 1diot0!

And whoever bans re-used letters in passwords needs a keeck in the butt, and fiqbly. (Fiqbly is blocked as password because it is a noun followed by a surname, says some champion Scrabble player with no reason to exist.)

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Connect at mine free Wi-Fi! I would knew what I is do! I is cafe boss!

Robert Carnegie
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Smart doorbell has potential

If only they hadn't advertised it on TV (this is "Ring") and shown everybody how it works.

You can pretend to be in, that's the main idea. You also can photograph people, and this works BEFORE they ring the bell because it can be motion sensitive. (Yes, this means if a cat does a whoopsie on the doorstep. Yes, there are repeats on of "Some Mothers Do Have 'Em".)

Delay in answering is normal for door phones as well as bells.

Rubbish sound quality is also normal for door phone. If it's bad enough then your visitor won't know where you are or what you're saying. For that matter, the app could be written to play pre recorded messages such as "Can you tell the man next door, I'm just getting into the bath" etc. Or a big barking dog would be a great sound effect to use.

Also if it is a burglar by the look of it then you can call the police straight away. It seems unlikely that the naughty boy or girl will win that battle of wits.

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Terry Pratchett's unfinished works flattened by steamroller

Robert Carnegie
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Similar joke

I think it was "Son of Cliché" on radio - written by the Red Dwarf authors and including prototypes of Dwarf, and currently repeated on BBC Radio 4 Extra (as is Sir Terry, indefinitely) - that presented a spoof feature on the truth about Marilyn Monroe, including someone who provided a (fake, using her music tracks) revelatory recording of Marilyn; he said, well, no one had asked him about it, and anyway it was on 8 Track tape cartridge and who has those any more...

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Robert Carnegie
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Re: > If anyone wants to do an academic study of his work

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Immortal_Bard is indeed a story of Asimov's.

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Couple fires sueball at Amazon over faulty solar eclipse-viewing goggles

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Sungazing should never be taken lightly!!

1. Buy ultra cheap sun-glasses from Amazon.

2. When the eclipse happens, hide in the cellar to be absolutely safe.

3. Sue Amazon anyway, PROFIT!

Of course I don't know really if they even have a cellar.

But "someone in America sues someone else" generally isn't news even you are the one suing or being sued.

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Is it possible to control Amazon Alexa, Google Now using inaudible commands? Absolutely

Robert Carnegie
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Joke

You just ordered oodles of cocaine. We will fulfil once we've hired a truck for your delivery. Is it OK to drop it in your driveway? When someone orders oodles of sand for a building project, we do that.

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Bombastic boss gave insane instructions to sensible sysadmin, with client on speakerphone

Robert Carnegie
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Re: My rules of engagement with speakerphones

When the phone call is made from the client site, you could reasonably expect that the enemy - excuse me, the customer - is listening. Also, you can tell.

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Airbus issues patch to prevent A350 airliner fuel tanks exploding

Robert Carnegie
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Mushroom

"discourage airliners from exploding"

Anyway, reading carefully, it is only the fuel tank that explodes. :-)

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Google slaps a suit on beefed up Chrome OS, offers Enterprise version for business

Robert Carnegie
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"slaps a suit on"

The headline made me think that someone copied Chrome OS and got sued. Apparently that wasn't the meaning?

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