* Posts by Detective Emil

174 posts • joined 10 Feb 2010

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Murdoch to Zuckerberg: Cough up cash, nerd

Detective Emil

Zuck to Murdoch

"Great idea! We've taken it on board: FB will pay trustworthy news providers for content. None of your platforms qualifies."

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NHS OKs offshoring patient data to cloud providers stateside

Detective Emil
Big Brother

Re: So...

Coincidentally, I got a mailshot from Schrems this morning to tell me about his current vehicle, myob.eu, and asking for a bung.

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Don't panic... but our fragile world is drifting away from the Sun

Detective Emil

One for the Reg Standards Bureau

Well, well, well. Something else that grows on the order of 30mm/year. Others are the moon's orbit and the width of the Atlantic. And fingernails. So may I propose a new Reg Standard for low velocity, namely fingernails per annum?

Incidentally, this concurrence of orbital growth means that the Moon's closest approach to the Sun remains unchanged, even as the Earth drifts away.

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Apple iPhone X: Two weeks in the life of an anxious user

Detective Emil

Re: I hate iOS - but......

Give iMazing a try. Not as horrible as iTunes, but not (anything like) free either. They've got a guide.

Alternatively, copy files to iCloud drive on Mac or PC (supposing you have enough iCloud space for them), then, in iPad Files app, select files once they've downloaded and use Copy to VLC action. That done, you can delete them from iCloud drive. All in all, about as bad as using iTunes …

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Detective Emil
Facepalm

Re: "Like I say, there’s no user guide to tell you what all the icons means."

Fair point. To get answers to most of the questions that you raise*, you need to download "iPhone User Guide for iOS 11.2" using the phone's iBooks app. The guide even helpfully tells you to do that on page 20. Shame that there's nothing in the box along these lines, as I'd guess that 90% of buyers never find out.

* Swipes on page 8, icons on page … 95. And that's still with 32 pages to go in Basics.

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Woo-yay, Meltdown CPU fixes are here. Now, Spectre flaws will haunt tech industry for years

Detective Emil
Black Helicopters

Re: 'Intel is in denial'

Here's the icon your post needs, but which, understandably posting as A.C., you were unable to use.

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We translated Intel's crap attempt to spin its way out of CPU security bug PR nightmare

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

More deconstructions of PR flim-flam, please

I realise that El Reg has skin in the game on this one, but there's so much stuff out there just waiting to be mauled. Uber's humblebrags offer a prime target; AirBnB emitted something that made my stomach heave yesterday … Disruption? Hah! All these outfits disrupt is my digestion.

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European court: Let's not kid ourselves, Uber. You're a transport firm, not a 'digital service'

Detective Emil

Pass the sick bag

Could El Reg possibly translate Uber's nauseating self-serving canned statements into something more easily stomached?

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Fridge killed my baby? Mag-field radiation from household stuff 'boosts miscarriage risk'

Detective Emil
Boffin

Re: Screening out other issues?

Well, reading the paper, the authors simply cite three other papers which they say established that magnetic field exposure was not much affected by a variety of other factors. Given that these may be among the studies that produced unclear results because of the non-availability of adequate measuring equipment, it's not clear to me that this issue has been adequately addressed. OTOH, sloppy work does not (usually) get taken up by Nature.

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The North remembers: York scraps Uber's licence over data breach

Detective Emil

No humblebrag?

Wow! Is York so unimportant that Uber does not consider it worth having its PR group cook up a mess of marketingspeak in response. You know the sort of thing: helping local economy, thousands of satisfied riders, work together to address this small misunderstanding …

17
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ML fails: Loyalty prediction? Not really. And bonus prediction? Oh dear

Detective Emil

Too bad …

… Wetherspoons was already on my sh*t list, so I don't get that flicker of smug satisfaction for adding them on reading this. Well, except that I now know that, by not being a customer at all, I arguably cause less front-line damage than by patronising the outfit.

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It's 2017 – and your Windows PC can be forced to run malware-stuffed Excel macros

Detective Emil
Facepalm

It's 2017, and El Reg is still using this tired trope

Such headlines duly added to block list.

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23

User asked help desk to debug a Post-it Note that survived a reboot

Detective Emil

Re: It finally happened.

My outfit is aggressively reequipping with all-in-one desktops…

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Google on flooding the internet with fake news: Leave us alone, we're trying really hard... *sob*

Detective Emil

We asked Google to comment, but …

I wonder why that ritually-included line was missing from the story. Maybe, like the rest of us, Kieren does not know the spells and incantations required actually to get in touch with a real person at Google, rather than some algorithm for which a spokesperson may later disclaim responsibility in a press release if its actions are more than usually crass. Or maybe tagging a piece as "opinion" absolves the author from seeking a response.

0
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Google reveals rapid Bluetooth gadget connection tech

Detective Emil

Re: Seen a demo

Umm, surely the hidden agenda is for Google to know where you are, what device you have, and, given the nature of that device, what you're up to.

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How to make your HTML apps suck less, actually make some money

Detective Emil
Meh

Kool-Aid duly drunk

Google wants you to make web apps because, unlike native apps, their content can be crawled.

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MEPs vote to update 'cookie law' despite ad industry pressure

Detective Emil

"Let me know how much you're paying for El Reg content"

If El Reg were to give me a means of coughing up, I'd probably do it.

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UK Treasury Committee chairman calls on Equifax to answer for breach omnishambles

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

Re: This will continue.......

Agreed. Although victims of enormous breaches who get sued do tend eventuallly to call in third-party forensic teams at vast expense so as to have an assesment of the damage that has a chance of standing up in court. These teams tend to find that the problem was even bigger than first thought, and the information, if released at all, is released late on Friday on the west coast.

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European Patent Office's document churning snatches Germany's attention: 'We are concerned about quality'

Detective Emil
Holmes

But at least one government subsequently picked apart that report …

Follow-up on that interesting aside, please: I can't find anything about it with a quick search.

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

Detective Emil

Quite. What has the EU ever done for us?

[YouTube].

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How to stop Facebook and Apple taking over the mobile phone industry

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Gnomic analysis

1. Provide storage and compute power closer to the edge of the mobile network.

2. ???

3. Profit!!!

The thing about Facebook is that it is a service that billions* of people want to use. There's no way that it's going to migrate its storage and smarts out of its own data centers to kit controlled by carriers who, given the chance, are every bit as rapacious at it is.

The missing step is to replace those question marks with some killer app to supplant FB and capture those billions of users — and of dollars. The carriers' record of being able only to encumber phones with unwanted crapware does not inspire confidence.

* Well, according to FB's reach figures [Reuters], at least.

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Sonos will deny updates to those who snub rewritten privacy terms

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

Re: Nobody actually read what they said in the blog post...

+1 (or modern equivalent).

Having a European level of suspicion about such things, I did actually read through the whole policy (while listening to Farming Today on a Sonos …), and it seems pretty reasonable as these things go. So I duly ticked the box.

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What'll we do tonight, Kieran? Same thing we do every night, Tintri....

Detective Emil

The story seems to be missing this (YouTube) link.

3
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Oh no, EE! More UK mobile customers face sluggish roaming abroad

Detective Emil

Re: What about the UK?

Well, EE has tooted its horn about temporarily increased coverage for Glastonbury this year. If you can fight your way through the flacks, you or your event's organisers might be able to get them to do something similar for you.

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Detective Emil

Anecdotally …

Well, here I am in a founder-member EU country, just having returned from France and Switzerland. 4G roaming everywhere. Well, except where unavailable, like tunnels through the alps (where one can still make 2G phone calls). No sneaky out-of-plan charges either. So maybe this pettiness is just a UK thing.

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Kill something, then hire cleaners to mop up the blood if you want to build a digital business

Detective Emil
Mushroom

Oi!

Look what you've done to my buzzword detector.

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Zero accidents, all of your data – what The Reg learnt at Bosch's autonomous car bash

Detective Emil
Thumb Down

Who pays?

Bet all this wonderful data-sucking infrastructure's going to cost the car-owning punters just as much as they save on insurance.

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Well, that escalated quickly: Qualcomm demands iPhone, iPad sales ban in America

Detective Emil

IANAL

The FTC is investigating Qualcom for possible monopolistic practices involving, inter alia, “an anticompetitive tax on the use of rivals’ processors”. There’s also a good chance that, if Intel considered that it needed to use the techniques described in Qualcom's patents in its baseband silicon, it licensed them, so exhausting Qualcom’s right to collect on its IP. Consequently, I don’t think this is likely to fly at the ITC. (If Intel hasn’t licensed the patents, yet is infringing, it could be argued that this is a result of different anticompetitive behaviour suspected by the FTC, namely that Qualcom “refuses to license standard-essential patents to competitors” — although Qualcom is careful to claim that these particular patents are not SE). And yes, Qualcom could go after Intel if it hasn’t licensed the patents, but patent law means it can go after whom the hell it likes (or, in this case, dislikes more).

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Time to rethink machine learning: The big data gobble is OFF the menu

Detective Emil

I get this feeling of déjà vu …

Google Ngrams shows that Artificial Intelligence enjoyed a vogue in the late eighties, neural networks in the mid nineties. The graphs don't show mentions of Machine Learning rising much, because Google hasn't added to the Big data behind them since 2008. But, if it does, and if I run this query again in 2010, I'm sure the pattern will repeat.

5
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Western Digital bares fangs in $1bn Toshiba lawsuit

Detective Emil
Headmaster

Legal question

Is it possible for a claim to be frivolous, but nevertheless have merit? Or not to be frivolous, yet still be meritless?

1
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Murdoch's £11.7bn Sky takeover referred to competition regulator

Detective Emil

Re: An Empire....

The Premier League challenged the pub landlady in using a Greek TV Decoder, and i am not sure where the £8,000 fines came from.

Ah. That's copyright. A related bucket of sulphuric acid, but one for which the blame cannot entirely be laid at Murdoch's door. Which isn't to say that his companies don't milk it for all it's worth, and don't lobby against its weakening. (By, for example, the European Union. Don't worry: Blighty will soon be free of all that.)

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America throws down gauntlet: Accept extra security checks or don't carry laptops on flights

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Paris Agreement

Glad to see the Trump administration doing its bit to reduce global warming by cutting demand for long-haul flights.

28
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Google hit with record antitrust fine of €2.4bn by Europe

Detective Emil
Meh

With friends like these …

The full list of outfits egging Commissioner Vestager on: Disconnect, Inc., Getty Images, Inc., News Corporation, News Media Alliance, Oracle Corporation, Trip.com, and Yelp Inc. There's not an anticompetitive bone in any of their bodies, I'm sure.

19
5

Report estimates cost of disruption to GPS in UK would be £1bn per day

Detective Emil

Re: Why not..

The key word is "augmented": if the satellites go down, there's nothing to augment.

I must admit that, on seeing this story, I though that the undead eLORAN proposal had again risen from its coffin. And, sure enough, if one follows the links in the article, the full report turns out to discuss (even-handedly) it at some length as one possible fall-back.

4
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Samsung releases 49-inch desktop monitor with 32:9 aspect ratio

Detective Emil

Re: weighs 45 pounds

Well, the <a href="https://www.amazon.com/Samsung-Screen-LED-Lit-Monitor-LC49HG90DMNXZA/dp/B072C7TNC5/ref=sr_1_1”>Amazon link I found says the “item weight” is 33 pounds (still not light), so the larger figure includes packaging, the odd cable, inadequate printed docs and maybe a power brick.

4
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Giffgaff 'roam like at home' package means £1/min calls in Jersey

Detective Emil
Meh

"Most powerful"?

It Would Be Nice if it could be explained by what measure this satellite is the "most poweful". El Reg is far from alone in not saying, but hey, this is El Reg. Do tell!

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WannaCrypt: Pwnage is a fact of life but cleanup could and should be way easier

Detective Emil
Unhappy

Re: Throw the monkey from your back people. It CAN be done...

Munich? On thin and melting ice. I can't find any English coverage of the outcome of the February vote mentioned in the article, but here's a long piece in German. Or Google Translate.

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Vigorous tiny vibrations help our universe swell, say particle boffins

Detective Emil
Boffin

That paper has 214 equations!

A document containing 214 equations should have a readership of 2^-213 times that of Hawking's A Brief History of Time. That's um, about 10^-57.

2
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Microsoft sparks new war with Google with, er, $999+ lappies for kids

Detective Emil

Wake me up …

… when they get to the part about "telemetry".

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Back to the Future 2: Gasp! America's trade watchdog discovers the risks of 'free' movies

Detective Emil
Meh

"served up a slew of unwanted ads …"

Are ads ever wanted?

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Lochs, rifle stocks and two EPIC sea gates: Thomas Telford's Highland waterway

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

Re: Car, roads?

If a satisfied, although considerably poorer, customer may be allowed a plug, try Caledonian Discovery. (A few) Other operators, both cheaper and even more expensive, are available.

0
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Microsoft wants screaming Windows fans, not just users

Detective Emil

Re: I thought they didn't want screaming fans?

See also Three things I miss after ditching my MacBook.

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As of today, iThings are even harder for police to probe

Detective Emil

Well, actually …

HFS+ in iOS did effectively provide full disk encryption, as explained at Protected Until First User Authentication in the mind-numbingly long iOS Security document (old version, as the current one has already been updated). But that's not to deny that AFS' encryption facilities are better than HFS+'s in many ways.

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iPhone-havers think they're safe. But they're not

Detective Emil

Apple situation: More "mind how you go" than "lock up your daughters"

Reading the report, the headline Apple spyphone crack uses phishing, followed by an attack called Trident, which uses a sequence of three vulnerabilities to jailbreak the iPhone. Users who keep their iOS up-to-date (which does require hardware that is less than 3–4 years old) are not susceptible, since Apple has definitely fixed two of the vulnerabilities, CVE-2016-4657 and CVE-2016-4655. The documentation for the third, CVE-2016-4556, does not mention Apple at all. It's possible that its ID is incorrect: Nokia made a typo in one of the other two.

Of the remaining Apple vulnerabilities mentioned, AceDeceiver exploits an untrusted network and is defeated by two-step authentication; apps created with the booby-trapped xCodeGhost developer tools have been purged from the app store, and Apple is supposed to have made it quicker for Chinese developers to download the official xCode package (developers were reportedly downloading xCodeGhost because it arrived faster); KeyRaider affects only jailbroken iPhones; and Yispector, which affected only non-App Store apps, was blocked 18 months ago.

Of course, there are always more exploits coming down the pike, but a need for paranoia is not indicated at the moment.

3
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BT hit with £42m fine for Ethernet compensation delays to competitors

Detective Emil
Thumb Up

Re: How incredibly convenient

Bonding copper lines might sweat things a bit more, but the whole thing just becomes an unreliable mess (in terms of time wasted) when scaled across millions of customers.

Too right. Here in Nameless European Country, we have two bonded copper pairs giving us 100Mbps down and 50 up (true figures). And yet another warm box with blinkenlights in the service cupboard. Silly thing is, FTTP arrived the following year, but the provider won't put in the final 2m of connection between the termination and out router unless we want to shell out for more capacity (or less latency — but, if I asked for that, the help desk would not know how to react) than the copper will provide.

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Samsung's Bixby totally isn't a Siri ripoff because look – it'll go in phones, TVs, fridges, air con...

Detective Emil
Meh

A hard row to hoe

It's not clear to me why developers would use Samsung's API, toaster-fridge compatibility or no, given that Samsung's only got about 25% of the Android smartphone market. By programming for Google Assistant, a developer can address 100% (well, modulo quite a few smartphones that use Android but not Google's goodies). That's not to say that (unlike constrained Siri functionality on iOS) either API is available yet: Samsung says "eventually", and Google invites you to sign up to a mail list for announcements. Who knows who will be first out of the gate? But I'd back Google to win over Samsung, whatever.

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Linux, not Microsoft, the real winner of Windows Server on ARM

Detective Emil

ARM is fine for what it's intended for, but a fire-breathing high performance general purpose CPU suitable for weather forecasts it is not.

Yet. The Mont Blanc Project ("European Approach Towards Energy Efficient High Performance — thank goodness they didn't try to bludgeon that into an acronym) is addressing just this issue, using the Cavium ThunderX2™ mentioned in the article. This press release is a bit more readable than the project's website as a whole.

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Quantum board shake-up on the cards as threat of NYSE delisting looms

Detective Emil
Paris Hilton

Who?

A sentence or two of background about what Quantum does (or is failing to do) would be useful.

0
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UK watchdog to probe political campaigns trading personal info

Detective Emil
Meh

Louis Heron's advice in such situations

Ask yourself "Why is this lying bastard lying to me?"

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NHS patient letters meant for GPs went undelivered for years

Detective Emil

Crime

Posties get prosecuted for stuff on a much smaller scale than this. I trust that the guardians of the law will be feeling collars at NHS Shared Business Services in the near future.

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