* Posts by Robert Carnegie

2390 posts • joined 30 Sep 2009

Welcome to my world of The Unexplained – yes, you're welcome to it

Robert Carnegie
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"Upon"

I think it's short for "You XXXXXX" where the second word presumably is very rude or possibly a playing piece in chess. Or it's peach-wreck cognition or textile author-connect shoving its bad lady in.

Either Reg or The Inq used to say very rude things about GroupOn.

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To do DevOps right, beam down a UFO says Dynatrace

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Often wanted a warning beacon/klaxon

The scene in "The IT Crowd" where Richmond the server minder confides he has no idea what the flashing lights on the thing mean. Is that good? Is it supposed to do it?

In the grand old days of computing, your IT staff would program the hard drive lights to display a Christmas tree shape, or rev the drives to play popular songs of the time. Giving them a shiny toy that doesn't actually matter if they play with it seems an excellent idea.

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Cattle that fail, not pets that purr – the future of servers

Robert Carnegie
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Server names

Obscure, all alike, difficult to spell minerals. Not mine; someone who left the company abruptly. For all I know he came to work stoned :-)

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Who's behind the Kodi TV streaming stick crackdown?

Robert Carnegie
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What about Roku?

I may be misremembering, but I think I saw a Roku video box on sale in the Asda supermarket with a shelf ticket saying "fully loaded". Should I go again and check? Or quickly buy?

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Australia wants to jail infosec researchers for pointing out dodgy data

Robert Carnegie
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Gollocks to Beorge Grandis.

If he takes offence at that then he too is guilty of de-anonymising data without my permission.

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You're taking the p... Linux encryption app Cryptkeeper has universal password: 'p'

Robert Carnegie
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Good news recently reported about CMD.EXE

CMD is being nudged away from its role in Windows scripting, so its bugs will be less of a problem.

Instead, there will be Powershell.

CMD bugs are not being fixed, because they're afraid to touch the code and break it worse. Also, people have scripts that their business runs on, that rely on bugs in CMD; if fixed, the scripts are liable to break., It's the same as the cryptkeeper situation.

I may regret asking: what is the issue with the ? wild card? I think I know of ambiguity as to whether specimen.txt needs wildcard of *.* to pick it up or just *, .

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Robert Carnegie
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In this case the documentation was fine

The documentation for encfs was fine but the program didn't conform to its own documentation. cryptkeeper apparently relied on what the program actually did. But the updated encfs does what it always promised to do.

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Ransomware avalanche at Alpine hotel puts room keycards on ice

Robert Carnegie
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Bad Register

The headline is tasteless and I haven't read the story or looked at the adverts.

I read it at The Inquirer instead.

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2017 is already fail: Let’s try a Chinese reboot

Robert Carnegie
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I have a requirement for a "Monday following the last Friday in the month" reminder.

My implementation is a reminder set every Monday for me to work out in my head - or by looking at calendar - whether this is the one or not.

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Robert Carnegie
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Re: Can I just mention in passing....

I was going to mention the American-ness of the fortune cookies. Will it be disappointing if I now don't? Oh. Hang on. I already have, haven't I.

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We've found a ‘vaccine’ for fake news. Wait! No, we really are Cambridge researchers

Robert Carnegie
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The Onion

One or two Onion stories a year get passed around as factual, maybe as a prank initially but then by people who take it as true. It does belong on a "web site of news that is not true" list.

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Robert Carnegie
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Open your passage

Probably the muddled details of the "north west passage" story are, (1) explorers go in special "ice breaker" ships (and get stuck anyway), (2) explorers may greatly exaggerate their achievements especially but not exclusively if no one else is there to see, (3) there's a difference between "passage open in summer" and "passage open in winter". And (4) people nowadays cheerfully make up lies about this sort of thing and it makes baby jesus cry.

I could pursue the question but I do not expect to persuade you of anything and anyway I don't care. Be your own climate change sceptic sceptic one day a week if you like, at first. It may grow on you.

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Robert Carnegie
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Who's on first?

Fake news is quite predictable. For instance, the fuss over numbers attending President Trump's inauguration - although it is rattling that the White House is doing he lying about that and you can see it yourself in the photographs. And for protesters - it's now routine that someone takes a pose of discrediting the protest by placing advertisements offering (untruthfully) to pay people for protesting. So, like that.

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Bookish hacker finds holes in Amazon, Apple, Google epub services

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Clarification

As far as I can see, it's not about DRM.

It seems to bé mainly about software called "epubcheck" which is supposed to catch errors in e-book data files and possibly make sure that all files which should be included as part of a book are there. But while doing that, this software itself either can be interfered with, or cn bē made to include harmful data in book files, Imhaven't got that quite straight.

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IT team sent dirt file to Police as they all bailed from abusive workplace

Robert Carnegie
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Union rep is probably another employee of the business anyway.

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Opera scolds stale browsers with shocking Neon experiment

Robert Carnegie
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Opera Mail

I think you can get a self-contained copy of Opera's e-mail system, and keep using that. Maybe.

It's "innovative" too.

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Robert Carnegie
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Haven't tried it.

Does the selected tab promote itself to position 1 in the stack, or, do the tabs move themselves around when I'm not looking?

I think in either case I prefer things to stay put and not slide around on me.

Example - WordPad "Recent Documents" - I can live with having to inspect the list of previous files to load, numbered 1 to 9, to find the one that I want. But only just.

I browse with Opera (Blink version) on 4 GB RAM with about 6 tabs left open always, and I seem to have a memory leak. Or a virus or something.

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Mr Angry pays taxman with five wheelbarrows worth of loose change

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Costs to government??

I think it was Mr Angry who employed assistants to spill out coins from their paper rolls into his wheelbarrows, not the government, but I may be misinterpreting.

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Promising compsci student sold key-logger, infects 16,000 machines, pleads guilty, faces jail

Robert Carnegie
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Re: How is a keylogger illegal?

It's legal to install a key logger on a computer you own - with probably some qualifications. This software gets installed on someone else's computer and is built for that - hiding from virus scans is a clue to that.

As for making him work for the government, um, allegedly that's how justice happens in Russia.

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Clone wars: Wrestler sues Microsoft over Gears of War character

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Excuse me while I try to understand this.

Audition material is one thing, actually having your likeness used in the product.

Mind you, for me the graphic could be meant to be Scottish actor Robbie Coltrane with a very deep tan.

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Embrace the world of pr0nified IT with wide open, er, arms

Robert Carnegie
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Re: The pontification of Lara Croft with swishy hair and swaying breasts...

Isn't Lara Croft usually standing facing away from us? So, her hair, I would see that.

I haven't played that game.

"Gamification" can work, but it has to be more than calling what you're already doing a game.

A cyber exercise bike that plays "Luke Skywalker Spaceship Fights" would qualify as the thing to peddle.

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Oh ALIS, don't keep us waiting: F-35 jet's software 'delayed'

Robert Carnegie
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Go stick your head in a pig

SIRIUS CYBERNETICS CORPORATION PRODUCTS

It is very easy to be blinded to the essential uselessness of them by the sense of achievement you get from getting them to work at all

In other words - and this is the rock solid principle on which the whole of the Corporation's Galaxy-wide success is founded - their fundamental design flaws are completely hidden by their superficial design flaws.

SHARE AND ENJOY

The company motto of the hugely successful Sirius Cybernetics Corporation Complaints division, which now covers the major land masses of three medium sized planets and is the only part of the Corporation to have shown a consistent profit in recent years.

The motto stands - or rather stood - in three mile high illuminated letters near the Complaints Department spaceport on Eadrax. Unfortunately its weight was such that shortly after it was erected, the ground beneath the letters caved in and they dropped for nearly half their length through the offices of many talented young complaints executives - now deceased.

The protruding upper halves of the letters now appear, in the local language, to read "Go stick your head in a pig", and are no longer illuminated, except at times of special celebration.

http://www.sput.nl/~rob/sirius.html nicked from the late Douglas Adams.

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It's round and wobbles, but madam, it's a mouse pad, not a floppy disk

Robert Carnegie
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Re: ahh, floppy disks

British electricity sockets aren't watertight (normally).

Admittedly neither are "blanking plugs", but, they help.

Sockets set in the floor - usually covered I admit - may not stand up to a stiletto-heel shoe, either.

My situation: washing machine space under the kitchen worktop, with a socket in just the plate to get thoroughly sprayed if something goes wrong with the water side of things.

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Robert Carnegie
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Re: ahh, floppy disks

"electricity leaking, blanking plug"

Switching off a power supply socket before removing the plug using it is basic safety - if a switch is provided: it used to be optional. If it's live then a slipping finger may get you a serious electric shock.

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Let's go ARM wrestling with an SEO link spammer

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Wow.

No judgment on Google, but the SEO who may have Googled himself onto the Reg's page did also have the "muscle" of the ARM processor, as mentioned, to attract him.

Anyway, isn't there still plenty of room on Reg's pages for proper paid-for advertising?

I say Reg tried the shake-down on Patrick and he didn't go for it.

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Fake History Alert: Sorry BBC, but Apple really did invent the iPhone

Robert Carnegie
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"First smartphone"

For fun, I put "first smartphone" into Google. It wasn't Apple's. I think a BBC editor may have temporarily said that it was.

As for Apple inventing the first multitouch smartphone, though -

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-38552241 claims, with some credibility, that Apple's engineers wanted to put a keyboard on their phone. The Blackberry phone had a keyboard. But Steve Jobs wanted a phone that you could work with your finger (without a keyboard).

One finger.

If you're only using one finger, you're not actually using multi touch?

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Microsoft's Blue Screen of Death dead in latest Windows 10 preview

Robert Carnegie
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Slightly improved voice control, for the accessibility community?

And an automated Windows re-install with loss of apps... I have an urge to call a national television phone-in show, and enunciate, "Cortana, refresh Windows". And all over the country, whoosh.

Speech recognition came with Microsoft Word 2003 and with every Windows from Vista on (and XP Tablet Edition), so how the heck is it a "work in progress"?

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Did webcam 'performer' offer support chap payment in kind?

Robert Carnegie
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Joke

"I've seen it all"

It must have taken you quite a while.

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Robert Carnegie
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Re: Only that

I think "The Street of Negotiable Affection" appears in Sir Terry Pratchett's [The Colour of Magic] which was published in 1983 - the red light district of the fantasytown of the moment. The story's tourist takes a lot of fairly innocent pictures there but his portrait-box consequently runs out of flesh-tone paint.

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Sysadmin told to spend 20+ hours changing user names, for no reason

Robert Carnegie
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Re: About GMail user names

Or maybe e-mail to call.me.conrad@gmail.com who let's say doesn't exist is delivered to callmeconrad@gmail.com instead - or vice versa. But if both addresses exist then they only get their own e-mails. Or not. Or, that used to happen, but it has security disadvantages - as discussed.

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Robert Carnegie
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Re: Push back and automate

Logon with name is nice. So is a system that remembers user name. I think it isn't a big risk - although it's another matter for e-mail addresses and spear phishing, you probably want a random number on those - otherwise it's the passwords that need to be secret. And short names are good.

Tip that I read somewhere: spam tools typically will just not send to an address that contains the term "spam", such as "robert.hates.spam" or "rc.nospam.thankyou", so if that is your actual address then you won't be bothered. It was said that they also avoid the ".mil" domain - you can see that point of view but it's quite a drastic remedy.

So anyway: are those accounts based on forenames? Maybe I have a blind spot for this, I can't think of names beginning with Boo, except for Boo Radley. And Booker T. Washington. Who is quite famous.

I am also stuck for the other names. I promise I am not trying to social engineer your hospital.

I suppose that the NHS has a lot of Gastarbeiter with names that are unfamiliar in common English, but would those workers get the joke?

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HBO slaps takedown demand on 13-year-old girl's painting because it used 'Winter is coming'

Robert Carnegie
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Well known phrase?

I don't think that "winter is coming" is a "well known phrase". It is a trite observation. Winter is always coming, or it's here, or it's going. But it's not a famous proverb and I don't think it's a quotation and I don't think it's said unless someone sees you planting primroses in November. Which is what you're supposed to do for all that I know.

Nike trademarked "Just Do It", which is trite plus, but people are still allowed to say it.

I'm not a lawyer, but trademarks exist only in a context. So, your trademark can be a cock (Le Coq Sportif) while someone else's is (Kellogg corn flakes). The duplication doesn't lead to confusion.

In this young artist's case, I will suggest "When I am a cold woman I shall wear purple".

I am not sure about the hair but this comes to mind from the late Gerry & Sylvia Anderson.

http://www.thelivingmoon.com/49ufo_files/03files2/Sci_Fi_Girls_UFO.html

"never explained, never alluded to"

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I was a robot and this is what I learned

Robert Carnegie
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Does this come in a drone version?

Wheeeeee

(Has XKCD or Dilbert already done this? Dilbert recently built himself an electronic drone soul. I think it lasted about three days.)

In either case, I think a water pistol on the device would be sufficient offensive capability. Or more offensive if it isn't actually water. Practise on the cat.

Augmented reality goggles for flesh people and other drones so that they can see telepresent people as real. Like Pokémon Go with techies.

As for being groped... I think Stephen Fry said on his "QI" show that he could put off school bullies who liked to wrestle by saying, "Stop! I'm getting an erection!"

A bit difficult to live up to that when you're driving a cybernaut, but it could have a suitable telescoping attachment. One that buzzes loudly, I think. While you moan passionately.

Or you could just switch on your electric razor next to the microphone.

Even if they don't believe it, they're going to be the one who's embarrassed.

Or, if the person isn't unattractive, you might even exchange phone numbers.

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The Naked Product Launch: 30 seconds to sell a robot

Robert Carnegie
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Re: wtf

Well, it's labelled "Radbot". By all means skip that.

Register readers' heating problem is to dispose of the thermal excess from the servers in the basement, so none of us use radiator heaters. Well, I do, but I have little interest in ever turning them off.

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Going shopping for a BSOD? We've found 'em in store at M&S

Robert Carnegie
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During the Windows Update installation process, your computer is not "working". It is twiddling its thumbs. So are you. "Work" ideally resumes once the update is updated and the computer is rebooted. Until the next time.

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KCL staff offered emotional support, clergy chat to help get over data loss

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Jesus Saves!

I wondered if I was going to see an update to USB of Angus Deayton's (was it he?) crucifix necklace when playing an Anglican priest on the "terrible TV station" show "KYTV" quite a few years ago. The long leg of the crucifix unclipped - it was a handy pen.

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Gone in 70 seconds: Holding Enter key can smash through defense

Robert Carnegie
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Re: @Homer ... Missing item in the series?

Shurely you only need access to the keyboard. And maybe the power off and on.

So this could crack a kiosk, a computer in a library, maybe an ATM...

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Dell EMC cranks Xeon servers into ludicrous mode with Tesla GPUs

Robert Carnegie
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Lobachevsky? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lobachevsky_%28song%29

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesla_Girls

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Lenovo intros monster disk box

Robert Carnegie
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Does it come with USB port for my laptop? :-)

Ideally USB 3 ...

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Post-outage King's College London orders staff to never make their own backups

Robert Carnegie
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Let them use 7-Zip

And an academically obscure password. Maybe written on Post-It note by a doctor. An unbreakable code.

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DirecTV Now to give Apple TV free for those who take 3-month deal

Robert Carnegie
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Re: was this written by a human?

It does help if you know or can guess what a roku" or a "vod" is. But I made it through. But I didn't get excited about this news.

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Fire alarm sparked data centre meltdown emergency

Robert Carnegie
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Re: Strange Coincidence

I think in UK old people's houses have the sort of "fuse box" that sometimes plays a part in black-and-white movies and they haven't replaced it. Modern installations do have "circuit breaker" safety. Well, mine does and it's about 20 years old - should I - ?

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Robert Carnegie
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Since the same thing didn't happen next week (unless that is the story to tell next week), it may be a reasonable guess that what went wrong is the relay itself - an electric-motor-operated electric switch, in which, if the wrong two parts touch, you could well have melty materials situation and trouble to come afterwards.

When an olden-times light bulb ceases to operate, you replace the light bulb and then test if the light comes on. From experience, if such a light is protected by a disposable 3 amps fuse at the wall socket then it often happens that the fuse also must be replaced, and that's what you test if the new light bulb doesn't light. You may also amuse yourself by studying the bulb carefully to see if the wire inside is broken, which it may be.

It could be in my example that you're getting higher-voltage surges in your supply that cause popping of fuse and bulb, but I think you'd notice other lights flashing, your TV set exploding, etc.

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What strange madness is this? Microsoft makes patch data RESTful

Robert Carnegie
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Interesting schedule.

I think there's too much of this already today, but these dates seem to align - coincidentally perhaps - with what someone tried to tell me was the "hundred days" between Donald Trump winning the election and actually becoming president. Since it was my boss I didn't insist that this was a mistake (it's around seventy days), but I did check whether Mr Trump is talking about this "hundred days". It appears not. I don't think anyone could correct him either.

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Hackers cook god-mode remote exploits against Edge, VMware in world-first

Robert Carnegie
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"Hacking expected to succeed"

Actually, real security experts do tell you to expect that a hacker will get into your network if they try hard enough, and so, to design your network so that having one or more machines in it controlled by bad guys doesn't mean that all is lost.

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Build your own IMSI slurping, phone-stalking Stingray-lite box – using bog-standard Wi-Fi

Robert Carnegie
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How dangerous -

If the result of location sniffing is "I'm on a train"?

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Any questions? No, not you again at the back, please God no

Robert Carnegie
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Why Safari?

because it's like Microsoft Internet Explorer, but obviously the name "Explorer" is taken. And I haven't counted all the problems with "Missionary".

And why a compass - because an explorer needs one.

Ah.

Obviously then the name was "Apple Internet Explorer" until quite late. (Maybe.)

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Get that trash out of your cache

Robert Carnegie
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Maybe it's a honeypot page, to catch out site hackers who post "comments" that are spam advertisements, and are liable to hit even a page of incomprehensible gibberish. Or maybe I'm getting too old.

That I remember this cartoon,

http://dilbert.com/strip/1993-03-08

which is over 20 years old, may be proof.

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Uncle Sam emits DNS email security guide – now speak your brains

Robert Carnegie
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President Clinton

hey said "we're betting" that will be the case, but they also may have meant the other President Clinton. Or Prime Minister George Clinton. Or Vice-President George Clinton. But some of these answers are unlikely.

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Ghost of DEC Alpha is why Windows is rubbish at file compression

Robert Carnegie
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Re: What's cheap

Spinning rust is cheap, network bandwidth may not be, SSD certainly isn't cheap.

One recent Windows clever idea is to supply the entire operating system pre-compressed. Much space saved.

Your monthly patches, however, aren't compressed. So the disk fills up with operating system files anyway.

Maybe they will get around that by reinstalling the entire operating system from time to time, but calling it an update. Or maybe they already have.

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