* Posts by JohnG

1375 posts • joined 27 May 2007

Google Docs morphs into once and future 'GDrive'

JohnG

GMail Drive

Someone (not Google) produced a Windows shell extension to use a GMail account as a disk drive:

http://www.viksoe.dk/code/gmail.htm

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Microsoft hits autistic Xboxer with cheat evidence

JohnG

Whats the harm?

Making false accusations on national TV that her son received unfair treatment from Microsoft.

Also, perhaps it is unwise to allow an autistic child to avoid all real world social interaction and retreat into a virtual world of violent games.

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Israeli firm readies pocket-friendly desktop PC

JohnG

"...Linux-on-ARM is at a relatively early stage in its development"

People have been using Linux on ARM devices for a while now. There's the old SIMPad from Siemens and many other WinCE/PPC PDAs and PNAs which can successfully run Linux, not forgetting the TomTom devices. Linux may provide a new life for an old PNA for which the manufacturer no longer provides map updates. Although few of them have WLAN interfaces, some can be networked via Bluetooth.

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Passenger cleared after TSA checkpoint stare-down

JohnG

Driving license as ID

Taken from http://ec.europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/travel/entry-exit/eu-citizen/index_en.htm

"Please note that the only valid ID is the one delivered by national authorities. Driving licences, post, bank or tax cards are not accepted as valid travel documents or proof of identity."

However, the UK does accept a photocard driving license as valid ID for the purposes of entering the country as a British citizen (because you have to provide a valid passport to get one and the photocard driving license shows your citizenship). I actually did this once when I found I had left my passport at home when I turned up at Frankfurt airport. On return to Germany, I used my German residency permit to gain entry (not possible now as the Germans don't issue them to EU citizens any more).

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UK tech retailers are rubbish

JohnG

Online/Mail order vs. high street

"That's why when I bought a telly, I checked it out at several retailers, then saved £100 by ordering it off amazon."

This is the crux of the problem - going to a retailer to see the product and then buying it online/mail order. We all do it but this is why the traditional stores that actually knew about the TVs and other electrical goods they sold (and even how to repair them) all went out of business over 20 years ago*. We are left with a bunch of box-shifters who employ the cheapest school leavers they can find, so as to be able to compete with the online stores.

*For those too young to remember, before online shopping came along, people used to buy mail order stuff from adverts in magazines.

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Couple crash into church, curse satnav

JohnG

Navigator smarter than driver?

According to reports in Germany, the police said he went straight on when he should have made a turn. When combined with the driver's own statement, it appears that the navigator was correct but the driver failed to follow the navigator's directions.

It is amazing that anyone could find a building to hit when driving between hamlets with about 20 buildings between them. I am also puzzled as to why they were bumbling around the icy back roads when there is a perfectly good autobahn nearby. I hope the cops checked for the presence of winter tyres - driving without them in Bavaria at this time of the year would be both foolhardy and illegal.

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German docs develop remote-control stomach submarine

JohnG

U-boat numbering

U2 ?

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Special Ops satellite-bitchslapping hydrogen strato cruiser flies

JohnG

Limited?

Iraq started 2003 with a coordinated air defence system but this UAV could have been used after the second week of operations, by which time, the Iraqis had no useful aerial assets.

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California's green-leccy price system will stifle plug-in cars

JohnG

Cold

You also need to burn something (typically propane and kerosene) to get heating and demisting/defrosting in an EV used in cold weather.

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Man nabbed nude pics from women's email accounts

JohnG

Quelle surprise

"Police have emailed 3,200 questionnaires to potential victims, but so far only 46 women have come forward."

"You have numerous pictures of me in the buff so to get the full humiliation, I'd like to come down to the police station to make a report and have all your officers have a good laugh at my expense"

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JohnG

@Jim59

Yeah - that's all true but....

"That doesn't mean she would be happy for the pictures to become public property."

So don't put those pictures on the Internet at all if you hope to keep them private. There's a difference between how the world should be and how it is in reality.

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Spain grovels to penguins over 'Linux' anti-terror plot

JohnG

Linux: a brand of washing powder

"Linux" is a brand of laundry detergent from Switzerland:

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_(Waschmittel)

Maybe the Spanish thought their Operation Linux was some kind of cleanup.

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Lawyers fear Assange faces death penalty in US

JohnG

US Extradition Treaties

"The US-Sweden extradition treaty allows for extradition on suspicion of offences commited outside of the jurisdiction of the requesting nation and in some cases without the customary requirement that the offence for which extradition is requested be a punishable offence in both nations."

The US-UK treaty is similar. Additionally, the UK has form when it comes to handing people to the USA on request - think of the NatWest Three or involvements in renditions to Guantanamo Bay.

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Yorks cops bust Bradford guinea pig farm

JohnG

....less harmful than .... tobacco....

Uh - no. Cannabis gives users more tar than tobacco, more carbon monoxide and more carcinogens. There is plenty of evidence for this, and whilst your local pusher may disagree, he may have a vested interest to protect.

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WikiLeaks lawyer dubs US subpoena on Twitter 'harassment'

JohnG

Twitter and US law

Twitter is a US company and as such, they must comply with federal and state laws. This is clearly indicated in their Ts & Cs and one would have thought that this would have been fairly obvious to a group of activists/hackers/politicians when they signed up to Twitter. One might also want to think how US laws may impact other services based or located in the USA, like Facebook, Gmail, etc.

These social networking sites don't seem to worry much about their users' privacy when passing their details to advertisers.

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JohnG

"Citizens should have a right to privacy and governments shouldn't."

What about citizens bad-mouthed by US consular staff in the reports released by Wikileaks? Which citizens have rights and who should decide?

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Feds subpoena Twitter for info on WikiLeaks backer

JohnG

Always read the Terms and Conditions

"These Terms and any action related thereto will be governed by the laws of the State of California without regard to or application of its conflict of law provisions or your state or country of residence. All claims, legal proceedings or litigation arising in connection with the Services will be brought solely in San Francisco County, California, and you consent to the jurisdiction of and venue in such courts and waive any objection as to inconvenient forum"

Maybe she should have taken time to read and understand Twitter's terms and Conditions when she signed up. Like any company in the USA, Twitter will probably comply with US law - if this comes as a surprise to Ms Jónsdóttir, then she must be a dim.

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Disappearing filth leads to dropped charges in extreme smut case

JohnG

"...and when the computer was checked, the image was no longer there"

Was it in a browser cache which got cleared by a scheduled cleanup, shortly after the PC was powered up for the first time in several months?

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Assange 'threatened to sue' Grauniad over leak of WikiLeak

JohnG

Ownership?

"...arguing that he owned the information and had a financial interest in how and when it was released"

Surely, the point is that the documents being released belong to the US government - unless Assange is now claiming they are his creation and therefore, forgeries?

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'Operation eMule' feds bust duo with 500+ eBay, PayPal accounts

JohnG

Operation eMule?

DHS now helping to promote file sharing. Do the RIAA and MPAA know about this?

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Who will rid me of these obsolete PCs?

JohnG

Beancounters and residual value

"...giving away a decommissioned PC is considered to be a “taxable benefit” . This means determining the “current market value” of the beastie in question and notifying the beancounters such that they could perform some dark rituals and incomprehensible accounting voodoo. This was a no-go."

Swap the beancounters' desktops for the obsolete ones that they claim have residual value and see how quickly they can depreciate IT hardware to zero. This also applies to printers.

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Greek police cuff Anonymous spokesman suspect

JohnG

Evidence

Leaving his name in the PDF is enough to get the guy arrested and give the cops a reason to confiscate all computers they think he has had used recently, along with any form of storage. If he was careless enough to leave his name in the PDF, he is probably careless enough to have left some other evidence of his activities with Anonymous.

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British lags less chatty on mobiles

JohnG

Femtocells?

Maybe the prison service could have some femtocells where connecting phones not on a whitelist get directed to some premium rate service where the lags can hear weather forecasts for places they cannot visit.

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WikiLeaks' Assange to be indicted for spying 'soon'

JohnG

re Now we know why he was remanded

I think you will find Assange was arrested on behalf of the Swedish government, not the US government. He has been remanded because there are genuine fears for his safety. If some loony decided to shoot him or otherwise injure him, there would be a load of finger pointing that this was part of some dastardly government plot to assassinate him.

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Walmart falls in with Washington's war on terror

JohnG

People of Walmart

http://www.peopleofwalmart.com

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ASSANGE ARRESTED in London - in court later today

JohnG

Swedish law on rape

Swedish law makes the definition of rape very broad. AFAIK, Assange is accused of having sex without a condom = rape in Sweden.

I'm not sure that this is bad for Assange though. Whereas the UK is a member of NATO and a staunch ally of the USA, Sweden is a neutral country. Furthermore, unlike the UK, Sweden does not have a fast track extradition treaty with the USA, where many are quite vocal about what should happen to Assange.

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WikiLeaks: Intel strong-armed Russian apparatchiks

JohnG

Quid pro quo?

Would the US authorities would allow a Russian company to import and use some unknown encryption in the USA?

Does anyone know what type of encryption Intel are using? Is it some exotic in-house creation?

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WikiLeaks dubs Amazon 'The Cowardly Liar'

JohnG

Publishing US classified material in the USA

IANAL but Amazon may be worried that publishing large amounts of US classified material may be illegal in the USA.

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My Droid EXPLODED mid phone call, says Texan

JohnG

Mossad?

Didn't they do something like this a few years ago?.

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Renta-spook: GCHQ commercialisation 'is a live issue'

JohnG

GCHQ encryption services for industry

Your secrets are safe with our cryptography. You have one key, we have another! What could possibly go wrong?

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DDoS attack, sex warrant won't stop Assange's leaky discharge

JohnG

Bin Laden hunt not successful

Palin should have picked a better example of a manhunt, as Bin Laden has not been caught after ten years of hunting.

Assange may have less to worry about from the USA or Sweden than from countries in the Middle East or Central Asia, where the concept of free speech is unfamiliar and people with wealth and power do not tolerate criticism.

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Canada steps closer to legalising sex work

JohnG

Legalisation

I live in Germany where prostitution is legal, subject to a number of restrictions. Brothels are not allowed near schools or churches and planning constraints mean brothels are typically located at the edges of towns or in industrial areas. Girls have regular health checks, pay taxes, have health insurance and pensions - they even have their own trade union.

The advantages are that there are fewer opportunities for criminals to control or exploit prostitutes, there are fewer girls working streets and trafficking is more difficult. Whilst I would not want to see a daughter, sister or other family member working as a prostitute, the German approach seems much better than that seen in the UK or the USA.

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Feds seize 70 'filesharing, dodgy goods' sites

JohnG

Google?

Google's search seems to be good at finding torrents - are they going after Google as well? :-)

4
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Stuxnet code leak to cause CYBER-APOCALYPSE NOW!

JohnG

Shutting down the transport network across the UK

A bit like snow but without the snowmen and snowball fights?

What is quite funny about the comments on the Sky news site is that many have commented as if they are true experts in computer security but their comments indicate the opposite.

4
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MS drops drive pooling from Windows Home Server

JohnG

No active routing since Vista

MS also removed active routing protocols from Vista onwards.

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Fujitsu in deal with Northern Ireland beaks

JohnG

ICT?

"Fujitsu will provide a managed ICT and telecommunications service for the Northern Ireland Courts and Tribunals Service for the next five years."

Does ICT refer to Intra-Company Transfer and a load of people hired on the cheap in far flung places?

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Immigration caps won't touch tech transfers

JohnG

Bullshit detected

John Cridland, director general designate of the CBI, said: “Exempting most ‘Intra-Company Transfers’ from the cap will also allow firms with international operations to manage their global workforce effectively. This will make sure that the UK remains an attractive place to base new projects and investment, which means more jobs for UK workers."

This is funny because ICTs seem to be mostly used to bring in Indians so that locals in the UK can show them how to do their jobs, after which the locals are made redundant and their jobs are offshored to India. This may be advantageous to the bottom line of some companies by reducing their wage and tax bills but it results in less jobs for UK workers and less revenue for the UK.

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UK.gov insists e-petitions won't be ditched

JohnG

re: but it's still there

Probably because one of the most popular petitions was the one invited Gordon Brown to resign.

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MP wants age verification for net smut

JohnG

Age verification

There is already age verification in that you have to be 18 or over to sign up for an ISP because they are offering services on credit. The responsibility for how those services are then used by minors should remain with the adult(s) who procured the services. PAYG phones may be different but perhaps the purchase of these services should also be subject to adult approval.

The Internet is not and will never be, a safe place for children and I for one do not want my rights further eroded by more government sanctioned snooping. ISPs should not have to police our communications and any law which promotes this will probably be in conflict with the ECHR.

Then there is the slight difficulty that ISPs would face in accurately predicting what sites are actually hosting porn - particularly given that the UK's legal definition of porn is so vague and flexible. ISPs have the reasonable objection that they could never hope to fully comply with any age control legislation. After this comes the problem that porn is readily available on P2P and Usenet, neither of which would be affected by any web filter. Do none of these politicians actually bother to find out the facts before they start dreaming up new legislation?

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A young and pretty Linux server OS that takes a bit of work

JohnG

Anna Popplewell

letters

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Content 'made available' in jurisdiction where server is located

JohnG

Allofmp3?

I guess that means Allofmp3 was OK after all, as they had complied with the relevant Russian legislation.

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Top Ten Arcade Classics

JohnG

This takes me back a bit

My game was Battlezone - many hours wasted on the machine at the campus supermarket.

I also have fond memories of the "pub table" variant of PacMan. Wacka Wacka Wacka Wacka.....

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UK.gov ignores 'net neutrality' campaigners

JohnG

Currently, there is no net neutrality

A lot of people here seem to be getting upset about the possibility that they won't have net neutrality, guaranteed by some legislation and then policed by some nosey government body. Has nobody realised that the terrible future with no net neutrality they described is actually the current situation? Are there any ISPs that do not stipulate their right to constrain any traffic that they deem to be excessive? How about business broadband customers who have a lower contention ratio than domestic customers? Some large corporate customers may require a maximum average latency to certain specified points - and they pay to have this in their SLA. The unfair Internet described is already here - but it still works, ISPs are not dropping VoIP or VPN connections and the end of the world has not yet arrived.

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Royal Wedding: Prince Charles is a ZX81, Wills is an iPad

JohnG

Pilfering

Is this how "pilfering" is defined?

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Facebook engineer bashes Google for Gmail block

JohnG

Facebook : Our members details private, everyone else fair game

""Each person owns her friends list, but not her friends' information. A person has no more right to mass export all of her friends' private email addresses than she does to mass export all of her friends' private photo albums," he says."

Oh really? I am not a Facebook user but every so often, I get emails from Facebook because one of my friends has given Facebook my private email address and Facebook are using it to punt their service. These emails are typically repeated several times before they give up. Applying their own statement above, Facebook should not be using the private email addresses of people who have not chosen to use their service, whether those emails have come from Google or anywhere else.

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Brussels blocks UK from biometric superdatabase

JohnG

Join Schengen?

Take drive around Coquelles (the area near the French end of Eurotunnel) and you would see why this would be a very bad idea for the UK.

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Marathon adds suspenders to virty server belts

JohnG
Paris Hilton

Suspenders

"...like putting on suspenders as well as a belt..."

This had me puzzled for a bit: Suspenders are held up with a belt. Then I realised, the author is probably from across the pond and is talking about "belt and braces" and wasn't just mentioning an article of ladies underwear to get people to read something boring about servers.

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Boffins mount campaign against France's official kilogramme

JohnG

Gold

Nice idea TeeCee but don't the banks measure gold by the Troy ounce?

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Nearly half of top UK firms do not use software escrow

JohnG

Been there

Many years ago, I was working for a large subsidiary of a very large bank. My boss, the systems accountant, had ensured that an escrow arrangement was in place for the multi-currency accounts system we were using. This turned out to be very useful when the group which owned the software house went into liquidation. The software ended up in the hands of a software vendor who then attempted to extract new license fees for our continued use of the software and substantial sums for maintenance. Once my boss had indicated we had already obtained the source code via the escrow agreement and would invite other companies to offer software support, the maintenance costs were reduced to normal levels and the need for new licenses evaporated.

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North Lincs pilots victimisation index

JohnG

What a waste of money!

Pilkington made13 emergency calls to the Police in the year of her death. The culprits were known to Police, local council and social services but nobody was ever arrested. They don't need software - they just need to actually investigate emergency calls instead of ignoring them.

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