* Posts by heyrick

3194 posts • joined 20 Dec 2009

Behold iOS 11, an entirely new computer platform from Apple

heyrick
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"It isn't really the task juggling, although that's nice when it works. It's drag and drop."

You know, we were saying stuff like that about RISC OS nearly thirty years ago.

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Google to kill Chrome autoplay madness

heyrick
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"Autoplay is one of those features that is *really* useful for a narrow class of popular websites and applications"

Name one.

One that truly honestly seriously needs to autoplay videos and would be badly damaged by the user having to tap or click one extra time to start the video playing.

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China orders immediate shuttering of Bitcoin exchanges

heyrick
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Headmaster

Sub title: "cyrptocurrency"

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Oops! 185,000-plus Wi-Fi cameras on the web with insecure admin panels

heyrick
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This is not news

I had a cheap webcam. Did a bunch of things to try to secure it.

Then I made a programming error in a thingy I wrote to fetch images. I requested a URL without the initial / character. And to my horror (exaggeration, I wasn't surprised), the server returned the content completely bypassing the password "security".

So now I know, I just need to know (or scan) for the camera's DDNS ID, then request "system.ini" (not "/system.ini") and the camera with obligingly return the entire configuration in binary form. Drop it into a text editor and read it the passwords, SSIDs, FTP/email login credentials...

... It is a WANSCAM/FOSCAM VGA resolution tilt and turn camera.

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Tick, tock motherf... erm, we mean, don't panic over GDPR

heyrick
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What's the betting...

... some companies will hold out and stick their fingers in their ears in the expectation that in a short while Brexit will happen and all this "European" stuff will cease to apply...?

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Google to kill its Drive file locker in two confusing ways

heyrick
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Stop

"Being able to select what to "pin" locally and what to access on demand is useful."

I wouldn't touch a device that either didn't have an uSD card (preferred) or couldn't talk to one via a reader and the USB OTG.

Why? I live in the country. 3G coverage in the middle of a muddy field can often outpace my wired broadband, but the data allocation is not unlimited. Plus, there have been enough stories of miscreants buggering around with DNS in recent times, not to mention cloudy services themselves falling over from time to time.

The cloud, for me, is useful as an easy way to scoot information between machines, especially if they are geographically separated by more than the range of a WiFi signal or Cat5 cable... but as a place to keep my documents and photos? What, are you insane? My private documents/photos are private by virtue of being on my uSD card in my possession, where they can be inserted into the device of choice and ALL immediately available instantly as I need them. Backups are quick and simple device-to-device and don't rely on a ~80K/sec up channel (with a tailwind and the moon waning gibbous). Plus, did I mention it was instant? Better than this, it even works in places where there is NO connectivity whatsoever. Maybe these bloody devs in Silly Valley have no idea what it's like, but trust me. Autumn rain of the European style, and Right Proper Forests of oaks and firs, they are like portable Bermuda Triangles when it comes to connectivity...

[you know, there is a cynical part of me that wonders if Google's push to keep trying to destroy SD card support in Android [thankfully ignored by Samsung] is in part due to their desire to promote "The Cloud"? Their Cloud, of course...]

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heyrick
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Re: What will people make of this?

"Google are forever creating things, letting people rely on them and then fucking them over."

If only I could upvote this a million times.

The galling thing is that Google doesn't even appear to have the decency to dump its abandoned apps that people actually used onto GitHub or the like.

For example "My Tracks" was something I used to use while walking around large boot sales held in towns ("vide grenier" if you know anything of France). It used to be useful for overlaying a chart of where I've been on top of the road layout with my current position so I could tell easily where I have and haven't been (in the spaghetti road systems in the middle of towns, this sort of thing is useful). But no, Google went and killed it off in favour of "Google Fit", as if the only reason somebody might want to track their progress is in order to count calories. Thanks a lot. I'm now using Ilya Bogdanovich's Geo Tracker which does exactly what I wanted.

I expect Google Goggles to be killed off next. It was a good idea, and there's such interactivity that could be built into a program such as that (beyond it being "a quick way to read QR codes"), but it doesn't work any more on modern devices (Samsung S7, Android 7) and looking at the app info, it was last updated on the 28th of May 2014. I'm guessing this should now be thought of as pre-slaughtered abandonware...?

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Oracle 'systematically denies' its sales reps their commissions, forces them to work to pay off 'debts', court told

heyrick
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Oracle? That's still a thing?

(see title)

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heyrick
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Logic operator hiccup?

"No-one pronounces "Oracle" as "OR acle" or "whore" as "horr" so it doesn't work."

Shouldn't that be an AND clause, not an OR?

As in, a person who might say "OR acle" may be unlikely to say "whore" as "horr". I do the latter, but not the former, but then I'm OldPondian not NewPondian.

Yeah, yeah, coat...

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heyrick
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Re: a necessary evil?

"Take UK tax legislation as an example, where people are being pursued now for things that weren't illegal when they were done."

Doesn't Article 7 of the European Convention on Human Rights come into play here?

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EU court must rule on legality of UK's mass surveillance – tribunal

heyrick
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Stop

and of the need for the haystack in order to find the needle

And this, ladies and gentlemen (and either/both/neither/undecided), is why we are a lot LESS safe and why the usual response after terrorist atrocities is that the medieval nutjob "was known to authorities".

Concentrate more on the needle, and less on the haystack.

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Another day, another drone upstart skips the consumer market

heyrick
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Happy

Re: Payload of 9kg...

Or for carrying two cats. Economy!

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Give staff privacy at work, Euro human rights court tells bosses

heyrick
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Re: Any chance

Any chance you could drop Brexit?

(downvotes ahoy! ;) )

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It's official: Users navigate flat UI designs 22 per cent slower

heyrick
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Unhappy

I hate flat

The current mania for lots of white and where-the-hell-do-I-tap is depressing. I thought we left monochrome and excess white back in the early nineties...

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Google's Hollywood 'interventions' made on-screen coders cooler

heyrick
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“Five years after the premiere of the original CSI television series, forensic science majors in the U.S. increased by 50%, with an over index of women.”

And then they get hired, realise that the guys in the office aren't hunks and the IT person is neither a perky goth nor able to read a licence plate by zooming up a single pixel a billion times...

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

heyrick
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Re: Site for sore eyes.

Amazon shouldn't be liable for every single product sold on the site, however their liability should kick in once somebody (and just one person) makes them aware that something is not legit.

For what it is worth: https://www.amazon.fr/gp/aw/d/B0196H3BSA/

It calls itself a JYE DSO138 oscilloscope kit. It's not great, being basically the ADC of an STM32 microcontroller, but for poking around video signals and low frequency stuff, it will suffice. Besides, I wanted to have fun putting it together. Notice all the JYE photos, the serial number, etc. Well what arrived was very obviously a fake. I contacted Amazon, "we take this seriously" and "we checked our stock" and so on. The usual bollocks. I was invited to return my kit and they would send me a proper one. I'll give them credit, they sent the replacement straight away so I could open up both and check that I had all the right components (the kits had incorrect values but of different things so between them I got all the right bits). Why bother? Well you've probably guessed that the replacement kit was equally fake. At this point I forwarded my emails to JYE and told them to add Amazon to the list of companies selling fakes, and then I gave up. I wanted to build the kit, not run around in Kafkaesque circles. As it happens it worked first time for me (perhaps having all the right bits helps? ;-) ) and is what I wanted. Maybe this coming winter I'll try the DSO Shell, now I know I can get an original from Banggood.

Notice that this fake kit is still being sold, and is still paying itself off as a proper JYE kit. Notice also that my review pointing out it's a fake isn't there. I'll need to write it again and this time take a screenshot.

tl;dr: There are fakes on Amazon and when it is brought to their attention, bugger all happens...

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Well, debugger me. Microsoft's BSOD fixer is getting a makeover

heyrick
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Re: Know your market

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julie_Larson-Green

Her wiki page describes her as the "Chief Experience Officer". Wait... WHAT? That's an actual job title? Not something Disney made up?

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heyrick
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Upvote because I have an iPad (won it) and you're completely right - it is PERFECT for people who don't like computers or tech stuff but want to look at websites and such.

My problems with it? When I want to do stuff I keep running into brick walls because geek expectations are not the same as, say, my mother's expectations. So my phone runs Android... Parts of that are locked down, but I can at least go delete unwanted logfiles, temp files, and all the usual sorts of rubbish that clutter things up...

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Ad blocking basically doesn't exist on mobile

heyrick
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Re: I just want to point out

"and the project be led in a more Linux-like fashion"

Now, is that the Linux with or without systemd?

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heyrick
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Re: I just want to point out

Firefox seems fine to me. With Ublock Origin, it keeps the adverts away.

And here's the thing, I have had adverts attempt to STEAL from me - I would visit a page and get those messages that my phone has a billion viruses, forced downloads of apks of tainted software, all followed by a text message from Orange saying something like my Internet+ transaction could not be completed because I have disabled the service. WTF? So even if Firefox was "fucking unusable" on my device, which it very much isn't, I would stick with it because...fuck advertisers. And fuck sites that beg, grovel, and try to guilt me into allowing advertising for them when they're happy to use the same sleazy advertisers that I'm trying to avoid.

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

heyrick
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Re: Damn right.

"and NO poker player plays their best hand first"

...?

You weren't there to play poker, you were there to recover a buggered up file. If Dianne trusted you, a simple explanation should have sufficed as to what your tool was and why you needed it. I myself have recovered dead PCs with Hirren's Boot CD and its collection of software of dubious providence. But when they need that machine NOW and said machine is telling them there's no C drive... they tend to be quite accommodating if you tell them it's a ten minute fix with your magical CD...

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Pssst... wanna participate in a Google DeepMind AI pilot? Be careful

heyrick
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Re: DeepMind should not be shunned because of its owner

"Also, wasn't the rogue engineer story to do with the VW emissions thing? Haven't heard that one from Google yet."

Want that what they said when caught slurping WiFi DATA when collecting SSIDs during StreetView tours?

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Sorry, but those huge walls of terms and conditions you never read are legally binding

heyrick
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When I upgraded iOS, I completely ignored the ridiculously long list of TS&Cs. The machine had already updated itself so there was no way to back out, so the only option was forwards, meaning you couldn't not accept them.

I'm sure in a country with a shitty legal system like America, it may pass as legitimate behaviour. I hope that the country in which I'm living has more sensible judges...

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Chap behind Godwin's law suspends his own rule for Charlottesville fascists: 'By all means, compare them to Nazis'

heyrick
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Re: The thin line between right and wrong

"White people must have the same right to form such such groups as anyone else"

I may be a stupid Brit who has fuck all understanding of American politics and issues, but it seems to me that the majority of "everyone else" forming such groups do so because they are hoping for a freedom from oppression, while these "white people" are actually seeking a means to oppress those who...aren't white.

Apples and pears.

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heyrick
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Re: Not a fan of white supremacists...

"Um when they march with brown shorts and ware swastika what do call them ?"

Stupid?

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Firmware update blunder bricks hundreds of home 'smart' locks

heyrick
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One simple job

A physical key, plus one or more numeric codes with some method allowing them to be assigned and expired. Why does this thing even need firmware updates?

Oh yes, maybe it is because the WiFi module is vulnerable because "being connected" is so much more important than "being secure"...

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Hotspot Shield VPN throws your privacy in the fire, injects ads, JS into browsers – claim

heyrick
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Re: The simplest approach is ..

Nice try, but isn't that just where GSuite directs GMail?

https://support.google.com/a/answer/33915?hl=en

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A sarcasm detector bot? That sounds absolutely brilliant. Definitely

heyrick
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Facepalm

Re: ????

"I am going to kill myself"

Smile, wah, pistol, sweat drop, rosy cheeks.

Uh, yeah, it's a bit shit at dealing with non sarcastic input!

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heyrick
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WTF?

????

"We are all going to die in agony in the fires of hell"

I am shit at reading emoji but it looks like it thinks it's a song about a broken heart...possibly written by an alien (or an octopus?)...

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heyrick
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Interesting result with just one word

"Why?"

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Google tracks what you spend offline to prove its online ads work. And privacy folks are furious

heyrick
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Re: The yoof of today (and a bit older)....

"Frankly I just cannot understand why I would want a light bulb, fridge or boiler connected to the Internet so that I can "Manage" it."

Convenience, I suppose. There will surely be somebody along to attempt to justify how leaving work an hour early in the winter should entitle them to tweak the heating timer to the house is cosy warm when they arrive...

...however the deplorable state of security and the apparent need to keep talking to the mothership (as in devices that fail to function if disconnected) mean that the only way to trust such hardware is if you're there to keep a watch on it, which pretty much defeats the purpose.

I'm with you here - I have "survived" somehow most of my life without all this stuff being connected to the world, somehow I imagine I might be able to go a little bit longer with the only connectivity my fridge has bring the mains lead... It'll be hard, I know, but I can do it. I can resist the need to check the optimum temperature of my cola cans thirty times a day...

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heyrick
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Bullshit

"Users have robust controls – we only use data that they’ve consented to have associated with their Web and App activity in their Google account, which users can opt-out of at any time."

I now watch stuff on YouTube using the preview function of one of the YouTube downloader apps. Why? Because if I'm in the mood for watching something stupid (parkour fails, for instance) on a machine where I am not signed in, I do not want Google to suggesting this to me on other devices. What's worse is that since I wasn't signed in, they have obviously used some other metric to associate the IP address with me (phone GMail auto fetch, perhaps) and since I wasn't signed in there is no way to remove such things from my watch history (not that that ever changed much). Google's accessible history is woefully incomplete and a few moments of thought will indicate that they're holding information on each of us that is not included in their "robust controls" (DPA violation? aren't we supposed to be able to request a copy of all data held on us?).

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McAfee online scan used plain old HTTP to fetch screen elements

heyrick
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WTF?

window.external.LaunchApplication("c:\\windows\\system32\\calc.exe", "");

So... Some JavaScript sent to "a browser" (the lingering ghost of IE?) has the capability of running an external application? Who the bloody effing hell thought that was a good idea?

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Sysadmin jeered in staff cafeteria as he climbed ladder to fix PC

heyrick
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Happy

Re: Windows for Worgroups

Aaaaah, yes! I remember the excitement of being able to print in a separate room for the first time.

Meh. BBC Micros, Econet, could do stuff like that since the early '80s...

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heyrick
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Re: So ...

"I'd have immediately brought the place to its knees[0] until the box was located."

Maybe all the downvotes because in other places productivity is more important than finding an errant box, especially given there's a reasonable chance it'll be some management bod ”just plugging in...." or some other excuse above the pay grade of the s by sysadmin.

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UK.gov: You can't have our drone test results because... er, security

heyrick
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The study's authors could not find a way to launch a 4-kilogram drone against an aircraft windscreen

Conclusion - if a test cannot mange to launch an actual drone at the windscreen of a non-flying aircraft, the chances are that real drones messing with real aircraft are pretty slim (speed, size, air turbulence...).

Instead, we must surely outlaw hastily cobbled together fake "drones".

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Firefox doesn't need to be No 1 – and that's OK, 'cos it's falling off a cliff

heyrick
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Firefox is dead

They're killing off XUL extensions and looking to do the nowhere-near-as-capable WebExtensions.

In other words, it'll mutate into a second rate Chrome clone. WTF? If we wanted Chrome we'd already be using it.

https://blog.mozilla.org/addons/2016/11/23/add-ons-in-2017/

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UK government's war on e-cigs is over

heyrick
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Re: Jesus, NO!

"approximately 50% of people just reading this comments section find it offensive, then there is sufficient reason for it to be banned."

I bet right now around 50% find Brexit offensive. Can we ban that? I'm sure far more people don't want to watch Songs Of Praise than do. Can we ban that? I bet it would be hard to get a huge number of people who would like to see Islam banned. Can we? Can we ban Trump?

Hyperbole, but the point is that arbitrarily banning what annoys is is no solution at all. Better to come to a compromise of sorts. I accept that "you" (whoever you may be) want to get your next nicotine hit by vaping. Granted, it's a lot better than smoking, however please accept that I find such a thing distracting and annoying so kindly go do it in another room. Okay?

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heyrick
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Re: Jesus, NO!

"Can you please define the "proper" way to quit smoking?"

Watching somebody nearly die appears to have that effect. At work, a previous big boss was a chain smoking bundle of stress. So it probably shouldn't have been a surprise when he had a heart attack in the middle of Yet Another Meeting. The first aider was a section boss not unlike a big boss in the making. Dealing with it, seeing it, plus accompanying big boss in the ambulance right to the door of the operating theatre...

Let's just say section boss quit smoking that very same day and made a ton of lifestyle changes. He doesn't get stressed by every little problem any more and he certainly seems like a happier person.

There's no "proper" way to quit smoking, but seeing something awful happen to a person they're destined to turn into might be sufficient impetus to change things before it's them on the operating room table.

Note - I'm am aware that this is more about a life filled with stress rather than direct tobacco related issues. The guy had a heart attack, not lung cancer. But serious medical issues do happen to smokers (the packets aren't even remotely subtle at pointing this out).

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heyrick
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Re: *Real* programmers don't smoke... or vape.

Until, that is, said programmers meet management, in which case smoking/gaping is an acceptable substitute for hard drugs.

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heyrick
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Unhappy

Re: Jesus, NO!

"This is the 21st century" ... which means little in this world with people pushing for creationalism to be taught in schools in preference to our best guesses about evolution, plus a long procession of "fake news" which makes it ever harder to work out what's true and what isn't...and leave you wondering why you even care any more.

If you want to start a discussion relating to "fact", don't begin by saying "This is the 21st century" as if the passage of time makes us smarter. There's plenty of evidence to the contrary.

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heyrick
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Coat

Grrrr, it's NOT vaping

There's no vapour. It is the solution (the e-liquid) in an atomised form.

Yeah, yeah, I'll go get my coat...

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heyrick
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Re: Jesus, NO!

"I get not liking the smell, but I don't get why people refuse to acknowledge that there is no evidence that vaping is dangerous at all,"

Hang on, isn't that what "they" said about tobacco cigarettes for years until the masses of actual evidence became to great to ignore?

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Forgotten your Myspace password? Just a name, username, DoB will get you in – and into anyone else's, too

heyrick
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Re: Schrödinger's Account ...

Ditto. I had a MySpace account a long time ago, but I thought they did something stupid like throw away everybody's content? So I just didn't bother logging in anymore...

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Pastor la vista, baby! FCC enforcers shut down church pirate radio

heyrick
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Chuck You Farely ?

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Eggheads identify the last animal that will survive on Earth until the Sun dies

heyrick
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Happy

The perfect critter

Armoured skin, clingy claws, front mounted cannon... It's basically a biological Tachikoma. What's not to like?

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Set your alarms for 2.40am UTC – so you can watch Unix time hit 1,500,000,000

heyrick
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Re: Signed Integer

"So you can represent dates before 1970."

Which would be good if it worked... Many moons ago I wrote some code to deal with ages. It worked fine for me, I was born in '73. My friend can along and broke it (born in '68) and there was no way the library was going to accept anything before 1970. In the end I wrote my own time library counting minutes from 1900 (seconds weren't relevant).

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Insurers may have to adjust policies to reflect 'silent' cyber risks

heyrick
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That said... Maybe the "cyber" (people still use that word?!) risk payouts should come from the bloody large fines dropped onto companies that are lax with their so-called security. Fines need to hurt if they're going to have any effect, otherwise such things will just be factored into the cost of doing business.

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heyrick
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Summing this article in one sentence

"We think we've found a semi plausible reason to extract more money (and urine) from our clients."

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Former GCHQ boss backs end-to-end encryption

heyrick
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I think you'll find that the opposition is also largely in favour of this nonsense

You know, I have difficulty imagining that the current leader of the opposition even knows what a computer is...

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