* Posts by Pet Peeve

512 posts • joined 22 Nov 2009

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Vote now for LOHAN's stirring mission patch motto

Pet Peeve

I think the "various" one best captures the spirit of Lohan, but the Various includes Lester himself - he posted that exact phrase first IIRC, after some similar ideas (I turned it around as "To the stars, with beer").

I am rather fond of "To boldy go where angels fear to tread", but I guess the Reg doesn't have enough infocom fans.

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Ever wanted to be a Playmonaut? El Reg's Vulture 2 spaceplane sim reveals what it's like

Pet Peeve

Can you make a video of a simulation run? x-plane is kind of a nightmare to use if you haven't taken a lot of time playing with it, and unfortunately I never got around to doing that.

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Hey Intel – that new Pro 2500 SSD looks awfully familiar

Pet Peeve

Those power consumption numbers are pretty significant

It's uses half the power of the predecessor when idle? That's excellent.

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Reg Latin scholars scrap over LOHAN's stirring motto

Pet Peeve

Splorf

"Navis volitans mea plena anguillarum est" made me laugh SO hard. Totally has my vote.

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New Star Wars movie plot details leak, violate common sense and laws of physics

Pet Peeve

This rumor is completely, to borrow a British technical term, pants.

Leaving aside the expanded universe (and please do, don't want to hear a word about it), are we expected to believe that Han and Leia, fresh off of another love-affirming rescue, just go their seperate ways and don't see each other again for 30 years? Luke and Leia are the only Jedi by blood left as of ROTJ (and do lets not talk about why that's true), so you'd think the two of them would see each other frequently over the years, and at least SOME of the time you'd expect Han and/or Chewie to be around.

This is either disinformation, BS made up by a troll, garbled as rumors often are, or the movie is already messed up. I'm going with door #2.

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LibreSSL RNG bug fix: What's all the forking fuss about, ask devs

Pet Peeve

Re: Some additional info

Interesting - does libressl change the default prng engine from ssleay (which openssl has carried around forever) to arc4random if no engine is chosen in the config? RC4 is fine for cyptographic randomness, the way openBSD manages it. Pretty neat, actually.

That said, if they did such an override in the openBSD version, it definitely would explain the behavior change in the portable version, or if some randomizer other than RC4 was selected in configuration.

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Pet Peeve

Some additional info

if openBSD does reseed a prng when fork() executes, it's undocumented behavior:

http://www.openbsd.org/cgi-bin/man.cgi/OpenBSD-current/man2/fork.2?&manpath=OpenBSD-current&arch=i386&query=fork

The fork man page is pretty explicit about what it resets. You would think it would include this if it actually happened.

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Pet Peeve

There is no way that the generic posix fork() is going to reseed a crypto package's prng. It could (and probably does) reseed the system random number function, but no crypto developer, sane or otherwise, uses that. See some of my messages above.

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Pet Peeve

Re: Really?

I get that, but reseeding rand isn't going to help crypto, since no crypto package worth a dime would come within a lightyear of a linear congruential prng, especially one with only 32 bits of state.

Even if openBSD happens to reseed rand (with what? The right answer would be 32 bits of /dev/random), this wouldn't do a bit of good for libressl.

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Pet Peeve

Actually, using a pid change to indicate a reseed was necessary is a bad practice regardless of OS. Changing it to trap fork in a function was the right move.

Also note - the libressl developers do NOT consider themselves ready for prime time in any OS. They would be the first to tell you that.

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Pet Peeve

Really?

@Dan55: How would openBSD know WHICH prng to re-seed on fork?

It would have to take a callback to the prng's library for that to happen, and I find it hard to believe that openbsd would add that to a core posix function like fork().

The correct practice would be to have a function that does this work, which calls your prng's reseed function when a fork call returns 0 (meaning you're the child process).

Edit: Ha, you don't mean it reseeds RAND, do you? That would be spectacularly pointless for crypto.

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Pet Peeve

Re: @Pet Peeve

If the alternative is treating an experimental fork as stable? Yes! Read what I said before being a dick about it.

Frankly, I would have preferred the libressl people started from scratch. They are a very knowledgable team, and I have more faith that they'd do a rewrite correctly than I do of them figuring out and removing all the dumb stuff in openssl. PV

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Pet Peeve

haha, no.

Maybe if openssl was designed properly to extract platform support from the code, you could easily filter out out the dross. But that's the problem - openssl is an unholy mess in a lot of ways, and it is very likely that libressl will run into these problems over and over trying to figure out what's really junk (like support for platforms noboby's tried to deploy on in a decade and probably don't work if they did) and what isn't.

The scary part is that this was an obvious problem. How long is it going to take to find all the broken edge cases that you don't know are broken until they happen? My understanding is that a lot of the openssl versions of libc calls had additional functionality, or returned not QUITE the same things the libc call did, or handled errors differently. All of those are going to bite libressl in the ass, eventually.

I heard someone say the other day that if you see any linux distro with libressl in their stable branch, that is a distro to stay away from, for years at least, and possibly forever. Security is never proven, only demonstrated over time, and libressl's clock starts from zero. All of that said, the best of luck to them!

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Pet Peeve

Openssl is infamous for making their own versions of common calls. If all they were doing was implementing missing functionality on a given platform, and only using the homegrown version on that platform (using a function like openssl_printf()) they would be fine, but openssl uses the homegrown version in ALL platforms, and they sneak extra functionality into them too.

So, my guess is that the libressl folks yanked out the special version of fork in openssl, thinking there is no platform they care about where fork isn't in libc. However, openssl's fork was actually just a wrapper that called the normal fork, and then seeded the rng on the child process before exec-ing.

Was this good practice on openssl's part? Hell no, they should have made the extra behavior explicit. But it illustrates the trouble that libressl is going to have getting rid of all those overridden functions - some of them do stuff you still need to do, or have extra semantics that the code itself will need to implement.

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SpaceX FINALLY lobs six sats into orbit (don't mention the landing)

Pet Peeve

Re: It's not a boat.

From the description, I don't think it should even be called a failure, let alone a "back to the drawing board" as said in the article (get rid of that, totally unfair). It sounds to me like everything went perfectly until the landing burn ended, at which point the stage (having nothing solid to stand on), tipped over.

If it blew up when doing a belly flop on the water, that's a shame, but it doesn't say anything about the viability of doing the same thing on land. Hopefully there's video, the space-x stuff is always great viewing.

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LightSquared backer sues FCC over spectrum shindy

Pet Peeve

Re: Enough beating this dead horse already, Harbinger!

Exactly. The fireworks started practically the moment that the proposal was made public, and tests were done early on (before Lightsquared even did any, if I remember right) proving it was a dumb idea that couldn't possibly work.

I don't know if Ergen purposely bought these damaged goods with a lawsuit in mind (though he's such a loose cannon that it's certainly possible), but if he wasn't, he ignored the "Sale is strictly as-is, parts are irreparably broken" tag, and it's his own dang problem.

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LOHAN seeks stirring motto for spaceplane mission patch

Pet Peeve

I just thought of a great motto, major geek points if anyone gets the reference:

Audacter ire ubi angeli ut ambularetis verentur

You have to let it sink in a bit after translating it to get what's being implied.

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Pet Peeve

ad astra cum ceruisia

"to the stars, with beer".

Edit: Rats, ninjaed by Lester himself. I think it's pretty dang good though.

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San Francisco issues SMACKDOWN on parking spot sale software

Pet Peeve

Re: sounds like

Sweeping generalization much?

The only bad thing I have to say about SF is that parts of it smell bad. Some neighborhoods seem to have problems with trash pickup, and BART/Muni stations have that urine marinate that will make you turn around and go "nope!".

Mostly though, it's a great city. Some of the best vacations I've ever had were visiting there, and it's just as great outside of city limits.

P.S. the only thing dumber than making an app to sell a public parking spot (for one stop), is being the kind of world-class douchehat that buys one.

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#YO_NO! Messaging app 'Yo' gets hit by hackers

Pet Peeve

Re: Something smells rotten here...

Whatever goes through the network?

"Sir, Sheik Mohammed Al Dean has just sent a "Yo" to one of his followers."

"Send in the drones immediately!"

This app makes no freaking sense other than a joke. Maybe the million was a way of funneling money to a friend? Or maybe the backer was just that stupid.

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Is the answer to life, the universe and everything hidden in Adams' newly uncovered archive?

Pet Peeve

Re: ...............pation! (Anticip......)

Seriously? I think this is how it goes...

One of the many reasons Earth is shunned by the galactic community is because we name countries after the most unspeakably rude word in the galaxy. Even loose-tongued people like Zaphod Beeblebrox don't use the word except under dire provocation.

If you've never heard the original radio serial, DAMN I envy you for being able to hear it for the first time. I first heard it on public radio 20 odd years ago, and to this day I remember having to pull off the road (or drive into a ditch) when a quartet of robots started singing a certain song (which involves sticking your head in a pig). SO GOOD.

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Tech that we want (but they never seem to give us)

Pet Peeve

I'll leave off the obviously sci-fi ones:

- A retina display. No, I mean where the display is projected ONTO your retina.

- Full color e-ink.

- e-ink that is flexible enough to be bound in books of pages so you can actually turn them (say 200 pages at a time, so you could have a programmable paperback that doesn't need power except when loading up the next book or chapters)

- Haptic surfaces that don't feel like you're getting a low-level shock and actually feel solid.

- VR that doesn't make you barf and doesn't require wearing a combat-boot sized rig on your face.

- 3d modeling software that doesn't make you want to track down the designers and smack them in the face for making counterintuitive interfaces. Blender, I'm staring at YOU.

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Microsoft swats away FBI request for Office 365 subscriber data

Pet Peeve

Duh, they withdrew the case because they don't want a precedent-setting judgement ruling the whole thing unconstitutional.

They can keep trying NSLs thinking that most people will roll over, and backing off when they don't, but then more people will fight them and they're doomed anyway. Just give this shit up, FBI.

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Space Station in CRISIS: Furious Russia threatens to BAN US from ISS

Pet Peeve

Can someone please drop a few trainloads of money and rocket parts on Elon Musk, pronto?

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SMASH AND GRAB iThieves run car through front of Berkeley's Apple Store

Pet Peeve

This is why we can't have nice things.

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The Punch and Judy show is LIVE NOW cancelled

Pet Peeve

Re: CANCELED?

That's POPEYE, some other hobbyist balloon project. Nice pictures though.

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BlackBerry ditches T-Mobile US after iPhone advert spat

Pet Peeve

I believe the term is "shaking in their boots".

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Soccer's dull? A MIND-CONTROLLED robo-suit will be used to take first World Cup 2014 kick

Pet Peeve

Re: Amazing...

Of course it's a good idea, and there's work being done with it too - biocompatibility and durability of electrodes (which somewhat act against each other) are the big issues there - it is orders of magnitude simpler to strap on assistive devices, or to replace limbs entirely. Baby steps!

Seconding the pints all around (or I would, if something hasn't seemed to have eaten the icon bar in firefox). To think that wheelchairs and hook limbs might fall into myth in my lifetime - it's great to be reminded that, flying cars or no, we're living in the future.

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Homeopathic remedies contaminated with REAL medicine get recalled

Pet Peeve

Re: Allergy, or not?

Leave it to homeopaths that the one time their snake oil contains biologically active compounds, the results are worse than useless.

I don't know what the heck they think they were doing, but STOP MESSING AROUND WITH ANTIBIOTICS. We have precious little time left before many will no longer be effective - releasing useless amounts into the bodies of gullible people will only shorten that time.

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Move over Microsoft: RealNetworks has a GOOGLE problem

Pet Peeve

Riight, there's no more ill-will towards realplayer. Embedded adware, crappy performance, formats with no exit, demanding you explain why you were uninstalling before it would uninstall - all water under the bridge.

Seriously, screw these guys. The world doesn't need them, as has been well proven already.

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New WebCL toolkit hooks browser apps into GPUs – and that's not good news for Apple

Pet Peeve

WebGL? You mean the thing that everyone said to turn off when it was even in beta?

Native code in a browser=bad idea. I think noscript already disables it, even if you don't do it yourself in the browser settings.

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LOHAN bloodhound unleashes solar-powered minitracker

Pet Peeve

following myself up - the detailed article talks about the service time. A single AAA battery keeps the board running for 30 hours, 70 hours for a AA. Since they've had some "challenging" retrievals on past tests, they would not want to skimp on power capacity for the tracker. Given the mountainside landing on one of the tests, it would probably be worth going with an AA.

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Pet Peeve

volts aren't everything - the amperage pulled by the device and the total maH needed for the trip is likely more than a watch battery can provide. That said, I've soldered ultrabright LEDs to disc batteries (CAREFULLY), and they can last for months!

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Pet Peeve

Comment removed, I think it falls into the "too soon" category. Still found the trollface comment funny though.

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Pet Peeve

Re: just a thought

Predicting the landing point for that would be fun! Getting approval from NASA to pitch it out a service lock would probably be costly though. Maybe get an EVA astronaut to carry it in a spacesuit pocket and oops it earthward?

It's an interesting question - would an object lobbed by an astronaut hit the earth in a reasonable time? Depending on which way you threw it, it could even go into a higher orbit.

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Heroic Playmonaut wowed by LOHAN's bulging package

Pet Peeve

Playmonaut

Does your intrepid pilot have a cockpit window, or is he flying on instruments? It's not like there's any shortage of the latter...

The tea cup is so perfectly British!

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The long war on 'DRAM price fixing' is over: Claim YOUR spoils now (It's worth a few beers)

Pet Peeve

Was any of that necessary?

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Who earns '$7k a month' but can't even legally drink? A tech intern!

Pet Peeve

What the story doesn't say is a) this is temporary employment, often with no benefits and no guarantee of a job after the internship is over, and b) you make this much because they will work you so many hours that on a per-hour basis, you're not making nearly as much as the salaried employees.

Anyone who says a job is nice solely on pay doesn't appreciate the existence of a life outside work. Is it worth doing as a kid out of school for a few months? Probably (though look at the employment contract closely). Is it going to get you some great dough? Maybe, if you don't flame out from working 80 hour weeks.

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Apple fanbois DENIED: Mac Pro deliveries stalled until April

Pet Peeve

Re: C-c-c-c-c-c-c-c-clickbait!

It's a completely BS story, as anyone who actually has a mac pro on order knows.

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Pet Peeve

Hey Jasper, stop making stuff up for clicks!

Apple called me about my January Mac Pro order on Thursday - I will have the machine by next Friday. All Mac Pro orders that were delayed are getting rush shipping as soon as they come out of burn-in.

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Collective SSL FAIL a symptom of software's cultural malaise

Pet Peeve

Monday morning quarterbacking. There is always one test you didn't realize you needed to perform. Remember that situation with some unixes where they created horribly weak SSL certs due to a subtle bug that didn't mix in enough randomness? This stuff happens, relax.

By all reports, the test case would be an unholy bitch to create, which makes me wonder exactly how exploitable the problem really is.

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Curiosity now going BACKWARDS

Pet Peeve

@Gray ham

Maybe there's a loose part rubbing on the wheel that flaps against the wheel when going forward, but rides on top in reverse. I've seen that happen in auto accidents, where the fender is pushed in just the right way and only one direction works without grinding the crap out of the tire.

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Wii got it WRONG: How do you solve a problem like Nintendo?

Pet Peeve

Re: Wii failed NOT

Calling the wii a failure is dumb. if you say that, you're bad and you should feel bad. This is a console that made more for its maker than any other in its generation, and still gets use years later. It got our parents to play games, hell our great-grandparents to play games.

The problem with the wii U is that nobody who has a wii needs one - they're still using the wii just fine to play the games they like, the component video is plenty good enough for the cartoony graphics that work well in those games, and the hardware was pretty bombproof (if you didn't throw your wimote through your monitor). Does wii sports bowling HAVE to be in HD? I don't think so, it looks good enough on a 50 inch set with the right cable.

Anyone who wants games in HD probably has an xbox or a playstation too, and there's no reason to upgrade both, especially with the cross-platform developers dumping the wii ports.

I would love it for nintendo to survive, because they do understand how to make games fun for everyone. But it's going to be rough sledding for a while.

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HELL is other people ... Thousands play SAME Pokemon game on TV. Mayhem ensues

Pet Peeve

Some years ago, our local planetarium had this amazingly simple gadget - a button on each arm of each chair (red on left, green on right), and at certain points in the presentation, you could steer the projector by what the group wanted to do. It was surprising how well it worked.

There was an unexplained demo before the show where the buttons would cause a dot on a projected display to blink (dots not corresponding to your seat in the auditorium, totally random as far as I could tell), and everyone spontaneously got the idea to play "figure out which dot is me". It was really fun to work out a strategy while 300 dots were blinking all over the place. I used morse code (SOS), and found my dot in under a minute.

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LOHAN cops a faceful of Raspberry Pi

Pet Peeve

Re: Too late but still

Something like the pop-in lenses you can use with LEDs might have worked, if you can find the right size. I'd feel better about the "supersonic airflow" thing if a lens mount suck outside the skin, instead of having a divot in it.

I assume the cabin isn't airtight, so as long as there isn't a partial vacuum inside that may want to go find the epoxy hole to escape through, it's probably OK. The right epoxy can make a great bond to plastic, so it may not be the path of least resistance anyway.

LOHAN is looking as great inside as out.

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Silk Road reboot claims: Hacker STOLE all our Bitcoin funds

Pet Peeve

Sounds like BS

What possible maintenance activity would require the coins to be accessible? And wasn't this vulnerability supposed to have been fixed ages ago, with mtgox only vulnerable because they were using an old version?

Betting it will turn out that silk road 2 (electric coinaloo) was a scam all along, waiting for enough people to deposit and then disappearing. Certainly not the first time for the currency for that to happen.

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Apple pushes back release date for 'dustbin chic' Mac Pro

Pet Peeve

@corestore

Did you actually find a USB3 card that works in a mac? If so, could you tell me the manf and part number? I tried to find one a while back for my cranky old 2008 mac pro, and I didn't see any that would admit to being compatible.

I have a pro on order to replace the old beast, but I may spruce it up a bit and use it as a backup machine.

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Pet Peeve

@gordon10 - haha, no.

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Pet Peeve

New orders only, at least so far

Yep! My order (for the up-spec model, with a few upgrades over the starting point) is still showing "February" for a ship date. This thing really needs to ship soon - my 2008 era mac pro knows something is up and already ate a hard drive.

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CERN outlines plan for new 100km circumference supercollider

Pet Peeve

Re: Is the overlap of the rings part of the plan?

It is part of the plan - the LHC will inject particles into the new accellerator. That's the way CERN does things, and it's pretty cool. IIRC, the LHC is the fourth or fifth accellerator in the chain.

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