* Posts by Sir Alien

130 posts • joined 30 Jan 2010

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US Navy suffers third ship collision this year

Sir Alien

If it's bigger than you....

Get out of the way.

I apply this equally to any form of travel. Road, Sea or Space

Most likely the smaller vessel will always be more manoeuvrable unless dead in the water. Basic physics

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Brits must now register virtually all new drones and undergo safety tests

Sir Alien

Re: No that's not what it's for

So if I give my drone wings it merely becomes a standard model aircraft for which the rules don't apply. Love it, winged VTOL craft coming up...

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Sir Alien

Re: Headline is completely wrong.

Except they caught onto to that and now do it by co2 per kilometre. This encourage manufacturers to cheat (aka. VW USA scandal)

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Sir Alien

And this does nothing to solve the problem...

As usual, government does massive knee jerk reaction to curb the carelessness of some drones while clearly implementing something that will have no effect. According to CAA (and MAA) rules it is already illegal to fly any form of model aircraft, be it a drone or winged plane near a built up or high population area, airport or military installation.

Those that are currently breaking these laws will only continue to break any new (and useless) laws the government implement. Would a mandated transmitter/receiver transponder not be sufficient? You can then track the pilot. If it does not have one, blow it out the sky.

I also question the pilots at airports saying they could see a drone. Try telling the difference between a small bird and drone while doing 250+ miles an hour. That object will be flying past your window so quickly it will be just a dot. The only time you will be able to confirm it's a drone is (a) it's near matching your speed, or (b) it actually impacts the window.

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UK regulator set to ban ads depicting bumbling manchildren

Sir Alien

Re: The era of pointlessness

I was stretching the truth a little (Donald Trump moment) but the point I was trying to make is that the advert was not pressuring anyone into an unhealthy figure or lifestyle and was just setting a reasonable example. People could ignore it like people have done in the past if they felt it wasn't for them.

The outcry over that advert was in my opinion was overreacting.

I personally am a tiny bit overweight. Instead of complaining I am doing something about it with exercise and healthy eating. It is a slow process but I am sticking with it and slowly but surely my body fat has been getting lower. Granted some situations are hard to lose weight. For example, I have indirect family member that has diabetes and although she does eat very healthy, she does have a slightly higher body fat compared to someone of equal diet and without diabetes. I don't think that majority of obese people could use this excuse though unless of course they get diabetes as a result of their obesity.

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Sir Alien
Facepalm

The era of pointlessness

I would like to draw attention towards the Bikini Clad model that was part of the article. We seem to be heading for an era where people are becoming thin-skinned and complain about anything that they are too lazy to achieve.

I am solely against some advertising imagery such as models that look like twigs with a dress on and this does clearly set a bad and unhealthy example. However in the Bikini ad they used a model that was well formed and slender which looked like she simply ate right and exercised regularly. Clearly someone felt the need to complain about the ad as they did not look exactly like this model and eat 10 burgers a day. If a doctor would class a person as being of healthy shape and size then it should be permitted as part of advertising.

This is only one example but I for one believe we should be encouraging people to have a lower body fat and be healthier not banning every ad that tries to do this. (think of the NHS) I wonder where it goes next, bodybuilders and athletes being banned from the beach because they look too fit and making someone jealous.

It seems obese is becoming the new normal which is a sad thing :-(

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Blighty bloke: PC World lost my Mac Mini – and trolled my blog!

Sir Alien

Quite simple...

Bought online.... no product received.... contact bank and reverse charge. If a company won't deliver the product the won't get the money.

Same thing with damage if you have evidence.

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No more IP addresses for countries that shut down internet access

Sir Alien

I'd imagine this applies to both IPv6 and IPv4. It's not scarcity being used as a political tool just the whole IP system in general. True, the end result cuts the country off like the country itself is doing but it means that the country in question is not able to for example limit it to a subset of their populace since the entire block (v4 or v6) is revoked.

True you could just announce the block anyway but the people you announce it to would have to accept the route. Should anyone upstream put in a rule to ignore your announcements then you would not get through to anything. It does work and has been implemented before where certain a asian country announced a block not belonging to them, so upstreams just ignored the advertisement after network admins waved magic all over their routers.

Bit complicated to fully explain here but go read up on BGP routing and you will get quite a lot of information.

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Sir Alien

Yes they can stop this if they find out. Part of the rules allows them to revoke the whole block back. So if business is forced​ to give his addresses to state, afrinic would then just revoke the whole block and deny both parties the block.

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Aviation regulator flies in face of UK.gov ban, says electronics should be stowed in cabin. Duh

Sir Alien

Re: Please discharge battery before entering the aircraft.

Actually a fully discharged Li-Ion battery can be just as susceptible to spontaneous combustion. This is why many Li-Ion batteries ship with a partial charge in them. Most devices I have received by post have had at least a 20% charge but I imagine this can vary by device.

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Europe to push new laws to access encrypted apps data

Sir Alien

Re: Strong encryption exists, and is "in the wild".

It still requires that the accuser proves that you know the key. If you genuinely don't know the key it would be torture to detain you for something you do not have or have not done.

For example:

(A) you refuse to give them a key >> go to jail, do not pass go, do not collect £200. with this you have let them know you have the key and that you just simply refuse to provide it.

(B) someone plants a random encrypted file on your computer. you do not know the file exists and you do not know the key. The accuser also cannot prove you have the key, you get off but might still get monitored to be sure.

On my computer I have a swap file because certain programs don't like it disabled. So for good measure it is configured to re-key every time I reboot. The key used is simply the input from /dev/urandom or /dev/random so not even I know the key.

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Ex-military and security firms oppose Home Sec in WhatsApp crypto row

Sir Alien

I was always jokingly told that a pre-requisite of becoming a politician was to obtain a criminal record first since they all seem to behave that way. I do think your comment holds some truth. Have a tantrum, tell people a story and hope (or force) them to agree with you and wave through crazy laws.

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Why is the Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega+ project so delayed?

Sir Alien

Re: risk

Although it does not eliminate the risk it does cut down the risk of burning cash to often.

My personal rules for backing a kickstarter:

1. It MUST have at least one competent business member in the team, be it a person or partner company

2. It MUST have a working prototype. If all I see is claims and CGI videos then it does not get touched.

3. It MUST already have planned tool/manufacturing costs based on the crowd funded target. For kickstarter this is easy since the campaign either gets all funding or nothing. Not like the Indiegogo variable scamming. (I have no affiliation to either)

Any crowdfunded product that has not already been developed or prototyped is to much of a risk in my opinion and I would simply just wait for the product to hit retail. 3D printer kickstarters have made me so afraid of backing them I actually waited to see if the Trinus 3D printer was real and available for sale since it looked like a nice build.

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Planned Espionage Act could jail journos and whistleblowers as spies

Sir Alien

Two things...

A) if the leak is posted in another country then unless that country is willing to extradite this law can do nothing to international (internet) leakers. No matter how much they put that clause into law, it cannot affect anyone not in the country or in a cooperating country. Look at Snowden and America, a good example of why such a law is useless and easily seen to be aimed at the general public.

B) Like many African countries, what will happen is if a state becomes too totalitarian the country will start to have a brain drain. All knowledge leaves to other countries and all that is left are those that can't afford to leave or are to stupid to see the state of affairs.

If I start to feel like a prisoner in public and cannot do anything about it, I would simply leave the country and go else where. Germany seems like a good bet since their constitution prohibits things like this, or so I am told.

The only innovation that would be left over is the innovation of covering your tracks on whatever you do.

- S.A.

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Hack the Army: US military begs white hats to sweep it for bugs

Sir Alien

This is a joke right?

I mean, the moment you go snooping around "Uncle Sam's" things then the men in black will be on your doorstep so fast to get you deported into the USA concentration camps (a.k.a slave prisons). I certainly have lost complete trust in anything from the USA. Sorry for those honest citizens that become collateral.

- S.A

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Encrypted email sign-ups instantly double in wake of Trump victory

Sir Alien

Re: Is it...

Or send a completely plain text email with no content other than a completely encrypted attachment. Either way the payload is unreadable whether the payload is in the email body or on an attachment.

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Google says it would have a two-word answer for Feds seeking Yahoo!-style email backdoor

Sir Alien

Legal action Europe?

Does this not mean now that any provider in Europe that were using yahoo as a backend email provider (e.g BT) can be sued for European data protection breaches? Bring out the lawyers?

Just saying...

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SETI Institute damps down 'wow!' signal report from Russia

Sir Alien

Re: Paging Mr. Niven...

I'm pretty sure us aliens can spell. English (or Engrish) is not to difficult to learn.

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Swiss firm still wants to eat up Pi flogger Premier Farnell

Sir Alien

Rather the Swiss than the alternative

I would rather the Swiss buy them than the Americans who are likely to just gut it for a fast buck to appeal to their shareholders.

Shareholders should seek investment safety in my opinion rather than that fast buck.

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Oooooklahoma! Where the cops can stop and empty your bank cards – on just a hunch

Sir Alien

Re: Just use a normal CC.

Ah but it not being on the police report as some have claimed would be putting the officer in charge of the confiscation in the fraud cross-hairs (sort of).

My comment about reversing the charge was only if you attempted to claim back and it did not exist on the police report as an asset.

- S.A

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Sir Alien

Just use a normal CC.

Okay, not everyone has one but even if you keep you balance down the insurance that a normal credit card provides would be some much more appealing in such situations.

If you only keep your CC on you during such travels and they took all the balance then if the report does not list the assets confiscated, you simply call up your CC provider and reverse the transaction as stolen funds.

Cops take your money, you take it back.

-S.A

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Norway might insist on zero-emission vehicles by 2025

Sir Alien
Alien

Re: Hydrogen

Same could be said for petrol cars that can also explode and burn in a massive fireball. Most fuel types require an oxidizer to burn including hydrogen and it is also likely that cars will only be designed with low pressure tanks anyway so damage like a petrol car will be limited.

The Hindenburg only burned because the hydrogen had something to react with (air) once the skin started leaking.

Like most things in life, it's not "what" you do but "how" you do it.

- S.A

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Bank in the UK? Plans afoot to make YOU liable for bank fraud

Sir Alien

Hope this fails...

I certainly hope this change fails or is re-worded correctly. I mean, clearly if the account holder was stupid and shared their details they should just be told tough.

Like myself though, I was defrauded years ago by card skimmers messing with (Shell or Total) petrol station terminals and after a good 3 to 4 week investigation it was determined that it was not my fault. If this happened and they made me pay for it I would certainly be mighty displeased (and tell them to bugger off and move bank).

Can you imagine the lawsuits that will happen. Hell, something like this can easily bring about a class-action style case and become the next PPI problem.

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Wire offers secure video chat

Sir Alien

Banned software.....

So a vendor has released software that is either banned or not secure (under proposed snoopers charter). Either we cannot use the software in the UK unless companies provide a back door to it or it is not really secure because of a compulsory back door (eventually).

I see software just all going open-source and people just compiling their own security in from source.

- S.A

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Coders crack Oculus DRM in 24 hours, open door to mass piracy

Sir Alien

What sad news and lost buyers...

It seems that Oculus (FaceBook) obviously want the product to fail. When there are non-DRM alternatives out there, the DRM versions always eventually fail.

Makerbot (3D printers) failed just in this way. Once you have betrayed and lost the trust of the customer base, existing or potential, then you might as well just shut the doors immediately and close down. It's not like this is a mistake of implementing DRM but rather a malicious implementation.

I was quite interested in Oculus as out of all the headsets it looked the smallest and most comfortable but to be honest, with DRM like that I have reconsidered going for an alternative brand. HTC Vive, OpenVR (Razer) or StarVR if it ever gets released.

- S.A

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UK needs comp sci grads, so why isn't it hiring them?

Sir Alien

This seems to be the problem these days. Courses seem to have bureaucracy built in now and becoming more a training program to tick a box. I did something at the OU regarding their computing course and although some of the course is good, others parts are purely a waste of time and don't add any "engineering/science" benefits at all.

I am considering doing something else, elsewhere, mainly for the fact that I actually enjoy studying new things but would also be a good bit of updating on my knowledge. I wonder if brick & mortar Universities do part-time/distance courses.

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EU mulls €3bn fine for Google

Sir Alien

Re: itunes

Ah but as the article says, having a monopoly is not illegal. Using a monopoly to stifle competition is.

So, can you care to explain how iTunes not being on Android (or any other service) is stifling Android in any way, shape or form?

- S.A

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Inside Electric Mountain: Britain's biggest rechargeable battery

Sir Alien

Re: go from stand-by to 1.32 gigawatts in 12 seconds eh...

No because that 0.11 "jigawatz" over capacity will blow the flux capacitor right out the car. I think relying on Mr Fusion in this case will be a safer bet.

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UK authorities probe 'drone hitting plane at Heathrow'

Sir Alien

Maybe not government permission but you are still likely to require permission of the property owner (assuming BAA is the airport owner). This is likely in place so that you can go to the nearest disused airbase and just ask local permission to fly around without breaking any rules.

Without asking property owner permission it would be trespassing but not sure if that is a crime in itself.

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Sir Alien
Facepalm

Re: Terrorists will use drones

With your logic it seems that all model aircraft should simply be banned then.

Drones, Model planes, Model helicopters can all carry some sort of explosive so they should all be banned. While we are at it, why not ban cars too. It was shown in Israel that terrorists used cars to ram bus stops and killing innocent people. In Iraq, cars were used as bomb transport to kill innocent people (just like your hypothesis on drones) so we should most definitely ban cars.

No, we should not be banning drones. Licensing won't help either because quite simply, if this were a drone they are already ignoring the rules and laws. Implementing new rules and laws won't help as these will simply be ignored by a "potential" terrorist as well. Terrorists by definition, DO NOT obey the law.

Some people should think before spouting things like this.

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Sir Alien

How do you know what you hit...

Firstly, I am not saying this is false and it may well have been a drone. Thing that pisses me off is that the moment something goes wrong, pilots/news/whatever seem to blame the first most popular thing they can think of.

1. Most drones of reasonable size will have a number of metal components. If this were a drone strike of that kind, would be plane not have suffered considerable damage and needed repairs prior to resuming flights.

2. Most large airliners do approximately 150mph to 200mph on landing. When an object is approaching you at that speed, can you clearly identify it as a drone. Hell, it could have been a bird hitting the plane.

I certainly hope we don't get more "scaremongering drone laws" since existing laws do sufficiently cover drone/model aircraft use already. It also covers the fact the no model aircraft are allowed near an airport anyway.

So if this was really a drone strike, get the device, dust for prints as I am sure the owner must have handled it some how, arrest the bastard and put him/her behind bars.

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Lauri Love backdoor forced-decryption case goes to court in UK

Sir Alien

Just don't use disk encryption...

Okay okay, before I get a million down votes first hear me out.

Logically, if you wanted to do something suspicious you would use a completely disk-less computer. The moment the machine turns off, everything is gone. I remember hearing about a Linux distro built specifically for this where you traffic only goes over TOR and only in encrypted form. Though the distro was intended for privacy advocates, just like a knife it can be used for doing both good and bad.

So listening into such traffic would be extremely difficult though not impossible. Anyway, since laws can compel you to reveal a key, if there is no data stored in the first place there is no key to disclose and the device is merely a blank piece of hardware.

Don't have any persistent storage in the machine present, even unused and use a write-once optical disc so that it provides a sure measure nothing is persistently being stored.

-S.A

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Picture this: An exabyte of cat pix in the space of a sugar cube of DNA

Sir Alien

Re: A writeable CD left on window sill

I use properly stored Blu-Ray discs as well but opt for using rewritable discs rather than write-once. Write-once discs tend to be based on dye staining/burning which over time can fade.

Rewritable discs use a phase change medium that physical changes the layout and should technically last longer. The closest analogue I can find is "It melts the damn disc". It also allows updating or refreshing the disc by rewriting it again.

Personally I find backup to only have two options at this moment. Tape which is large, removable, robust. Optical which is smaller, removable and mostly robust.

Hard drives are not a good alternative for storing long term archive data. Some hard drives will even seize after standing for a very very long time.

- S.A

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GCHQ is having problems meeting Osborne's 2020 recruitment target

Sir Alien

Re: Not one of these 5-eyed spook cunts...

Power != corruption.

If I had the ability to annihilate this blue ball you call home but decided not to do it.

Am I corrupt? Obviously not.

Although it is only movies, the term "with great power comes great responsibility" does really apply to many things. I may have the ability to destroy this planet but choose not to do it, thus making me responsible by not abusing my ability.

The problem here is that those with great power seem to think of only two things. More money and more power. Whether you believe it or not, most spy agencies do industrial espionage. It's part of the job. They simply need hide the fact that they are doing it really well.

My "uber sekret weaponz" is hiding behind Saturn

- S.A

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FAA's 'drone smash risk to aircraft' is plane crazy

Sir Alien

Thing is that there does not need to be any new laws for "drones" which is simply another word jumping onto the hype train. Many countries already have laws governing hobby aircraft and where/when/how they can operate.

"ANY" model aircraft whether fitted with a camera or not, is not allowed to fly within a set radius of an airport or critical location (e.g. large packed stadium). This is just one example.

Yes, drones are more likely to attract the idiot with no clue than a model airplane but those idiots can be prosecuted or arrested under existing laws for doing something monumentally stupid. So this drone licensing and other rubbish is going to make no difference. It only ruins it for the ones that do know how to follow the rules.

What next, having a license to ride your pedal powered bicycle? Do we move onto a license for being able to walk? Sorry sir, I am going to have to confiscate your legs... you are not licensed to use them.

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Microsoft has crafted a switch OS on Debian Linux. Repeat, a switch OS on Debian Linux

Sir Alien

For those that remember.....

Two words >> Microsoft, Java

If you can understand those two words and what happened in the past you will realize that this is likely to happen again with Microsoft coming to the Linux world. Only time will tell but don't be surprised if it happens again.

- S.A

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Quick as a flash: ATTO joins 32Gbit/s Fibre Channel bandwagon

Sir Alien

Why bother with FC?

Most Ethernet based storages now are pretty good, reliable and fast. For example, CEPH as a block storage system performance really well on good hardware and networking and is "almost" infinitely scalable. I say almost because no one know the actual limits.

Take CERN for example and their 30PB+ storage system on CEPH. It can also be seamlessly upgraded by just taking out the 10Gbit adapter (and switch) and replacing it with a 100Gbit version.It is also fully distributed so has good hardware failure protections in place with automatic recovery in the event of a failure.

- S.A

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Raspberry Pi celebrates fourth birthday with fruity version 3

Sir Alien

Still waiting...

I am still waiting for the Compute Module to be updated and what is holding off my purchase. If they can get the compute module with this 64 bit processor and 2GB RAM minimum (preferability 4GB) then I would buy a version 3.

At this point, as I have a Wifi dongle with a Pi2B, the Pi3 is kind of a no need at the moment. Pi foundation, please update your compute module.

- S.A

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'Leave' or 'Stay' in the referendum? UK has to implement GDPR either way

Sir Alien

Re: The Tracer Bullet Effect

What would be more funny is that if the Scots actually vote to get us out of the EU even though Sturgeon is preaching to stay. That would be a massive slap in the face to her though she will probably paint it in some amazing light.

- S.A

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Linode probe into 2015 crack finds fake 2FA creds flaw

Sir Alien

Fine, I will say it then

FAIL!

Just kidding... More to the point I have personally made some mistakes in the past and never attempt to palm them off. I have never had an issue with being wrong about something but if I am, why not help in pointing out where I went wrong. (this is just a generalisation).

People make mistakes, people "normally" learn from mistakes. (well except TalkTalk).

- S.A

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What we all really need is an SD card for our cars. Thanks, SanDisk

Sir Alien

Re: Copy Protection

Have an upvote for your witty comment making my day.

- S.A

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Linux Mint hacked: Malware-infected ISOs linked from official site

Sir Alien

Sorry if this is sarcasm, not quite got it. But Linux is no more malware free than any other operating system. What I have heard before is Linux is "virus free" which is something different. Any operating system can get malware simply because the weakest link is the meat bag behind the keyboard who can click a dubious link for free malware installation.

Linux/Unix does make installing malware accidentally much harder but it is not impossible. Completely malware immune systems is a fantasy in terms of full far operating systems.

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US DoJ files motion to compel Apple to obey FBI iPhone crack order

Sir Alien

Re: No middle ground...

Imagine the Russian sending all their stuff in plain text for the Americans to see or the Americans sending all their stuff for the Russians to see. One example, Russia now have all the specs for an iPhone clone and make their own to sell around the world because it was freely available by intercepting information across the internet.

Apple the company goes bankrupt and the American economy loses billions of dollars. Many people become unemployed, not just those directly employed by Apple, and then you get social unrest. The human race are by nature explorers and inventors. When we are not exploring or inventing we are fighting (aka. wars) which are obviously bad.

Basically anything that you want to be confidential would not longer be. Does not matter if it is a terrorist case or your new invention that a larger company has just stolen.

- S.A

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Sir Alien

No middle ground...

Apple are rather clever on this and it may or may not cost them valuable business. But I suppose that is what the gamble is about.

I don't think Apple are simply not wanting to decrypt one phone with custom firmware. Some people are legitimising the behaviour towards Apple (not a fanboy) but when you think clearly, once Apple has written this custom firmware to decrypt phones it does not stop there. Going from a vocal court case the government simply has to put a secret court order in place to now hand over the tools and custom firmware to the FBI/NSA and they can indeed decrypt any phone they want. Apple are clearly trying to prevent a situation where no one knows.

Instead they are making a cake and eating it situation. They completely remove encryption, lose huge business and make the American economy take a massive hit. Or they leave encryption in place as is.

Like many have said before, it's either full encryption or no encryption. There is no middle ground.

- S.A

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ADpocalypse NOW: Three raises the stakes

Sir Alien

Ads becoming a self-propogating virus.

When ads first started I did not mind to much. There were few ads on a page and normally a static image or text, so keeping it simply and out of the way. If I liked something, I clicked the ad out of interest.

Now it's like driving through town, but instead of seeing one or two billboards with an advertisement, the entire town is just a giant ad platform with every wall moving and spewing rubbish into your face.

So I basically set a criteria on my ads now. If it moves, flashes or is flash, especially the ones that expand and make a site go nuts, it is blocked. If it is a static image or some textual advertising my ad-blocker lets it through. If a website is so interesting that I come back for repeat visits, I would happily pay a $1 a week/month to not see any ads. Maybe elReg should consider this while also deploy some SSL transport.

SSL certificates are only like $10 or $20 per year.

- S.A

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Bloke sues dad who shot down his drone – and why it may decide who owns the skies

Sir Alien

Re: Law in the UK is clearer.

I know I am always pissing on peoples fun but here is a snippet I found regarding the CAA (in the UK) so no hedge hopping for you sadly. Don't take my word for it though as I could be wrong (or the source is, not surprised if they are).

"""An unmanned aircraft must always be flown at least 50m distance away from a person, vehicle, building or structure."""

I do enjoy a little drone action myself but more for the experimental and tinkering at an engineering level.

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'Powerful blast' at Glasgow City Council data centre prompts IT meltdown

Sir Alien

Re: If the amount of kit in your data centre changes significantly

Can't really calculate it purely by kit space. The air in the datacentre also needs displacing. The rooms should really have a one way pop vent to relieve excess pressure but not let air back in.

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Putin's Russia outlaws ECHR judgments after mass surveillance case

Sir Alien

The EHCR needs to kick more than Russia...

If mass call scraping or surveillance is against ECHR rules then quite a number of EU countries need to be kicked as they are already are or planning to do it as well.

No need to mention the countries by name as people can with reasonable accuracy, guess the countries implied here. If they don't get kicked, it's just another situation of Pot meet Kettle.

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France mulls tighter noose around crypto

Sir Alien

Laws like this (implemented or mulled about)

In my opinion laws like this are for pretty much two reasons and none of them are related to terrorism. Just think of this, would you have protests if you can stop the planning of protests from the start? Person (A) starts to think about gathering protesters, then person (A) suddenly is arrested.

Another good thing (sarcasm) with banning encryption is that it makes the NSA's (and other spy agencies) jobs easier regarding industrial espionage. That nice French invention suddenly patented in America would go down nicely or vice versa. It would be industrial espionage at a grand scale.

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