* Posts by JohnG

1349 posts • joined 27 May 2007

'Young people don't want to become like us', say IT pros

JohnG

IT was never cool

Take it from someone the wrong side of 50 - IT was never cool, even when it was called "Data Processing". IT is about as cool as accountancy : boring but the money is good. IT may have become even less cool with the effect of outsourcing and Intra Corporate Transfers on salaries.

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ISP CAN cut off pirates with 'three strike' rule, says Irish beak

JohnG

EU rights

In addition to the right to privacy in personal communications, there are also rights issues about collective punishment and self incrimination. If it would have been wrong to punish a group of policemen when they all refuse to say which one of them altered surveillance logs following the shooting of a Brazilian electrician, then punishing entire families for the actions of one of them would also be wrong. Then there is presumption of innocence, as opposed to be required to prove it and the right to a fair trial. I think these "3 strikes" laws in various EU countries are going to run into more trouble.

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Microsoft names Zeus ringleaders and notifies FBI

JohnG

Re: Double jeapardy

Double jeopardy says that you cannot be tried twice for the same crime and, whilst that may be true in the USA, UK legislation was changed under Tony Blair's government such that a person can be tried as many times as is necessary to get the correct verdict of "guilty".

In this case, these guys are serving time for their crimes in the UK, whereas the USA wants to punish them for their crimes in the USA, etc. Just because they may have used a single scam to commit crime in several countries, it doesn't mean that their crimes will all be considered as one.

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Mac-based Trojan targets Uyghur activists

JohnG

Re: a few questions

I thought it was pretty clear: the email has a zip file attached. The zip file contains a jpeg and an OSX app. Perhaps the jpeg file was included to provide a preview image in a file finder. I guess they expect the user to open the app file, ignoring any warnings from the OS.

Where did you see Windows tools used by the Kaspersky security researcher and, if he did, why would it matter?

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JohnG

Re: Seriously?

"You have to be a really silly user since OSX already warns that:"

"Windows has done that for years."

Even that wasn't enough so, for some years now, Windows email clients simply deny users any access to certain types of attachment, telling them that they should contact their system administrator if they wish to access the attachment concerned.

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Two weeks 'til the internet disappears, for 58 Fortune 500 companies

JohnG

Re: Infected Routers!

I guess the bit of DNSChanger that tries to change the DNS settings on a broadband router is unlikely to affect the Fortune 500 companies, although some of them may use broadband for guest Internet access.

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Apple wins US ban on Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1

JohnG

Re: Ouch!

I don't think it will hurt Samsung but Apple may feel some pain from the bullet in the foot. Banning anything is usually a good way to get people interested - especially teenagers.

"Look kids! The Tab 10.1 was so good, Apple had it banned - but we do have another one that's almost identical: the Tab 2 10.1. Get it before they ban it!"

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JohnG

Rounded corners - prior art

Somewhere in my attic, I have a Siemens SIMpad that came to market in about 2001 - it has a touch sensitive screen and a black case with rounded corners.

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Australia sanguine on Assange-to-Ecuador, would fight US extradition

JohnG

Re: CIA @Don Jefe

"Show us what the WikiGeeks exposed"

Wikileaks released a database of US military reports from Afghanistan and Iraq. Some of the reports included things like the surnames of informants and the town or village in which they lived.

As regards the Wikileaks embassy reports, a quick thumb through will show cables labelled with various classifications, including some marked "Secret". That's why Bradley Manning is in so much trouble.

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JohnG

Re: Has this really been thought through?

"The only viable way to get him out from the embassy would be to issue him his own Ecudorian diplomatic passport."

...and the UK would have to recognise his status as an Ecuadorian diplomat, which seems unlikely.

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Assange's Ecuador asylum bid has violated £200k UK bail, say cops

JohnG

Re: Don't understand... @DrXym

"The fear is that if he sets foot in Sweden that it is far easier to extradite him the US where potentially he could be looking a death sentence."

For starters, as signatories to the ECHR and as EU members bound by the CFR, both Sweden and the UK are strictly forbidden to extradite anyone to a country where they may be subject to the death penalty.

Secondly, the UK's extradition agreement with the USA is virtually identical to Sweden's extradition agreement with the USA. However, whilst Sweden is an unaligned neutral country, the UK is a NATO member and a close ally of the USA - the UK is far more likely to find a national security reason to act against Assange.

Thirdly, Sweden would still have to refer back to the UK if they were to consider extraditing Assange to the USA.

Given Ecuador's record on the treatment of journalists, Assange must be daft if he thinks he will be safer there than in Sweden.

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JohnG

Re: So what happens if Assange is given asylum? @Tom 7

The people at the Libyan embassy all had been sent by Libya as diplomatic staff and their diplomatic status had been accepted by the UK. The Libyan government did not agree to waive or withdraw their diplomatic status after the killing of Yvonne Fletcher, so the UK had to allow them to leave. None of this applies for Assange - he is not a diplomat for any country and the UK isn't likely to accept him as such.

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Honour for Queen's IT manager

JohnG

Re: It's not like The Queen actually knows what IT is

" I was shocked when they allowed him to not only learn to fly, but actually partake in Helicopter operations"

I think that was a different prince - Andrew flew a helicopter for the Royal Navy during the Falklands conflict, not Charles.

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Girl Geek Dinner lady: The IT Crowd is putting schoolgirls off tech

JohnG

Apart from the obvious problem for teens (girls or boys) of being labelled as a nerd, perhaps the smarter ones have noticed statistics that show over 30% of graduates in IT related subjects are jobless. Graduates in medicine have much higher prospects for employment - a field in which women are well represented. Maybe the dinner ladies think that girls are too stupid to consider the probability of employment when selecting subjects and careers.

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Supreme Court dismisses Assange bid to reopen extradition case

JohnG

Beyond reasonable doubt

"Surely someone should only be extradited if it can be proven beyond reasonable doubt that they committed the crime?"

In order to prove beyond reasonable doubt that someone has committed a crime, then the entire case would have to be heard - in which case, you can proceed straight to sentencing. Extradition treaties vary but typically require that some evidence is presented which implicates the suspect, to demonstrate that they should be extradited to face trial. The European Arrest Warrant (under which Sweden sought Assange) requires little more than the declaration that someone is wanted in another EU member state.

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JohnG

Re: A great incentive to live a crime-free life

When I served on a jury, I found that everyone took it very seriously. There was no rush to judgement but a discussion of all the facts and testimony available. If there was any bias, it was to acquit.

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PGP founder, Navy SEALs uncloak encrypted comms biz

JohnG

CALEA

Silent Circle would have to comply with any relevant US legislation, such as laws concerning lawful interception and key retrieval = so users would have to assume that the US authorities would be reading their emails..

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Microsoft 'mulled Nokia buyout, ran away screaming'

JohnG

Re: No, it wouldn't.

"Nokia didn't need Elop to mess up. The Finns have already demonstrated that they are highly incompetent in managing a complex enterprise"

Nokia has this year been pushed into second place (by Samsung) in terms of numbers of cellular handsets sold worldwide. Before Elop took over, Nokia had 36% of the global handset market - more than Samsung and LG together. Those Finns were so incompetent to have held the top slot for so long.

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Vint Cerf: 'COMMUNISTS want to seize the INTERNET'

JohnG

Re: Which evil you choose : More than just two choices

My impression is that the ITU has done a relatively good job of keeping politics out of telecommunications. I doubt that it would be possible to make telephone calls to and from countries on America's shit list if a US body had governance of those aspects of telecommunications.

When US politicians started talking of controlling the Internet for political and foreign policy ends, alarm bells rung in Moscow and Beijing. The snag is that there are not just two alternatives: another possibility is that some countries or even groups of countries may choose to go their way. China is not known for an open approach to the Internet and the Russian government has indicated that they may take steps to protect their part of the Internet from anything that they perceive to be external interference. It would be a pity if the Internet becomes segmented because some US politicians and corporations want to enforce their view on the rest of the world.

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Samsung Galaxy Tab 'a harmful drug', says Apple in ban bid fail

JohnG

Black rectangular case with rounded corners, touch screen.....

SIMpad from Siemens, circa 2001.

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Ten... bits of Jubilee tat tech

JohnG

Re: Here in Sonoma, CA ...

"... nobody gives a rat's ass about your tiny little monarchy."

It may have escaped your attention but The Register is a website from the UK. This means that it sometimes covers topics of interest/amusement to people in the UK and these are probably not as US-centric as you may be used to. However, nobody is forcing you to read El Reg. I'm sure a quick search would find some other websites discussing equally tacky products covered with stars and stripes, eagles and other stuff with which you could feel right at home.

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Wealthy Kensington & Chelsea residents reject BT fibre cabinets

JohnG

Re: Not all residents

If you don't Virgin Media, Hyperoptic have indicated that they are happy to fill any gap left by BT in RBKC. Hyperoptic are offering fibre with speeds up to 1G without any boxes in the street.

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Steve Jobs speaks from beyond grave: 'iPads are toys'

JohnG

Re: We look at the tablet and we think it's going to fail.

"What we have now are devices built from the ground up to be touch devices. Microsoft's approach was a thin veneer over full blown Windows and there was no multitouch or capacitive touch at the time"

I'll agree about the multitouch but you do seem to have overlooked WindowsCE, which has seen some considerable success, not least with GPS navigation devices.

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Assange loses appeal against extradition to Sweden

JohnG

Re: Allow me to preface....

"Turkey is a member of the EU and the EAW model."

Oh no they are not! The European Arrest Warrant applies (by treaty) in EU member states- Turkey is not a member of the EU and does not receive or issue EAWs. If what you said was true, the Duchess of York would already be in a jail in Turkey. having been tried there in absentia.

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Complex cyberwar tool 'Flame' found all over Middle East

JohnG

Re: countries like Iran and Israel???

"one is a rogue state intent on genocide though nuclear war, and the other is iran."

Israel has probably had nuclear weapons for about 25 years (maybe longer) but I missed reports that they had actually used any of them.

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UK man to spend year in the clink for Facebook account hack

JohnG

Re: 12 months porridge for a FB 'hack'?

The yob who burgled my house and five others (whilst on probation) got 120 hours community service and took over a year to pay the 100 pounds compensation awarded to me. None of my stuff was recovered. By comparison, 12 months for illegally accessing a few FB and email accounts seems a bit severe.

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Google+ dying on its arse – shock new poll

JohnG

Re: Not entirely a joke, I think.

For your average user, Facebook is wherever Google says it is - remember this?

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/facebook_wants_to_be_your_one_true_login.php

I know several people like the folk commenting to the linked article, whose approach to Internet use is to start their browser, type the name of what they want and take the first link offered by Google's search. It works for Facebook and it works for widgets, so widget sellers understand the importance of being high in Google's search results. If Google screw that up, then they may go the way of webcrawler, excite, etc.

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North Korean GPS blocking sparks cyber war fears

JohnG

GPS reliability

AFAIK, commercial aircraft are required to alternative means of navigation (e.g. INS), as GPS is not (yet) deemed reliable enough to be used in isolation. The first problem being that the commercial GPS signal may be disabled at any time for military reasons.

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'Fake Carla Bruni' Twitter account spreads Thatcher death rumour

JohnG

"...if we were all accessing the Internet via a government controlled ISP, it would be a lot easier to censor and tap."

...and it would cost 100 quid a month or 150 quid a month if you want to use your own router that wasn't designed a decade before.

For those who never had to deal with the GPO, they used to charge you an extra 75 pounds every quarter if you used your own phone with buttons, instead of one of theirs with a rotary dial - but one of their engineers had to check your phone first. This what at a time when you could buy a new car for less than 1000 pounds.

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Pirate island attracts more than 100 startup tenants

JohnG

Caribbean

Why not just open a company in one of the several Caribbean tax havens? These have banks, airports, fresh water, women, warm weather (although there is the hurricane season to think about), sand, nice food, etc. I know it is on the other side of the USA but it is only a short flight to FL.

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Evil plot to control souls via Wi-Fi thwarted

JohnG

Re: Never apologise to superstition

"It's high time we stopped treating religion in such a privileged manner and regarded it as the hate-filled, child abusing, reason stunting, war causing hokum that it is."

You may be right, although some religions are more chilled out than others. Anyway, we'll let you tell the Muslims of this new policy.

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Jolly rogered

JohnG

So many problems

First of all, who decides what is pornography and therefore, which sites should be banned? The legal definition of pornography (in England and Wales) is vague and open to interpretation. After that, we can get into the whole argument as to what is art and what is pornography.

Some online porn sellers in other parts of the EU may take a dim view of having their perfectly legitimate business routinely blocked from customers in the UK and may take legal action against the UK for interference in the single market.

What the "think of the children" brigade seemed to have missed is that, despite having some of the most puritanical pornography laws in Europe, the UK consistently has the highest teenage pregnancy and abortion rates in Europe. This tells us that the draconian approach is not working at all.

Something else that the "think of the children" brigade have missed is violence. Whilst they seem desperately worried that some pubescent kids will see some nudity or some people engaged in sex, none of them seem at all worried that their kids might view videos of someone having their throat cut by some terrorists or some Chechen girl being kicked and then buried alive for alleged adultery or ...

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McAfee founder raided in Belize by gang-busting police

JohnG

Belize has been independent from the UK since 1981, so we don't have any say in how they run their affairs. I guess it is technically still a Crown Protectorate, meaning we are supposed to help out if they get invaded (although that status didn't help Grenada in the 80s).

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Apple to dominate tablet biz, PC market for years

JohnG

"This forecast estimates that in 2016 more tablet PCs will be shipped than notebook PCs,"

I'd bet against that.

My tablet cost almost as much as my notebook. If I want to make notes in meeting, I need a proper keyboard - the touch screens methods simply aren't fast or reliable enough. If I need a proper keyboard, I might as well take the notebook instead of the tablet. Then there's the tablet's lack of processing power/memory/storage and the tablet apps being baby versions of what I have on the notebook. The tablet is fine for reading documents and emails, web browsing and the like but whenever I need to do some real work, I go back to the notebook or the desktop system and the tablet tends to be gathering dust.

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Virgin Media cuts Pirate Bay access for millions of punters

JohnG

We also assume our readership has plenty of relevant know-how.

...or they know how to use Google.

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JohnG

Re: No, You need to get real.

"Theft is hardly on the same level as child porn. But it's still theft."

...but copyright infringement is not theft.

From the Theft Act 1968 (http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1968/60):

"A person is guilty of theft if he dishonestly appropriates property belonging to another with the intention of permanently depriving the other of it; and “thief” and “steal” shall be construed accordingly."

Note the bit about "permanently depriving" - making a copy of some property does not permanently deprive the owner of the property and copyright infringement is not theft under the law in England and Wales.

Also, it may surprise you to learn that TPB links to many torrents that do not represent copyright infringement.

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GCSE, A-level science exams ARE dumbed down - watchdog

JohnG

ICT

ICT could also be Intra Corporate Transfer, this being the type of visa used to bring mostly Indian IT workers into the UK, such that those locals who have taken Computer Science GCSE but have no experience will be going straight on the Dole.

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Terrorists 'build secure VoIP over GPRS network'

JohnG

"Perhaps American citizens can use this technology to protect our communications..."

AFAIK, anyone who uses a form of encryption that defeats the NSA is likely to win a visit from the Feds.

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Google to FCC: Protecting Street View coder didn't derail probe

JohnG

Re: Sounds believable!

The snag with this theory is that Google did not store any encrypted payload data, the 600GB consisted only of unencrypted payload data. It is also difficult to believe that decisions about the content of the software build to be used in this global project was left to only one or two people.

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JohnG

"If you leave your wifi un-encrypted you deserve having your data viewed and recorded by third parties."

Maybe so but it is a criminal offence in most countries and third parties who engage in such activities can expect to be arrested. In some countries, the mere possession of the necessary tools (by those who are not certified security professionals) is also a criminal offence. Why should Google and their employees expect special treatment?

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'Geek' image scares women away from tech industry

JohnG

Cool?

“Misguided school-age career counselling” is another problem, as it often suggests to young women that ICT careers are too hard or somehow unfeminine.

No they don't - they keep trying to convince young women that IT is cool, with things like Women in Science and Engineering. They have been doing this since I was at university, 30 years ago. The snag is, when older folk tell teenagers that something is cool, they will have actually convinced them of the exact opposite.

Another problem is that young women (and men) considering a career in IT may have noticed the impact of ICT* visas, where people from India are brought to the UK to fill IT jobs or the offshoring of IT jobs, all conspiring to reduce opportunities and salaries. They may also have noticed the significant percentage of graduates from IT related courses who cannot find employment. Careers in medicine, law or banking are likely to have better prospects and salaries, which is decidedly more cool than being jobless.

*ICT = Intra Corporate Transfer, a sneaky way to have someone working in the UK under Indian terms and conditions.

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US doc finally fingers elusive G-spot

JohnG

"Hi dear, how was your day? I have some news - I will be going on a business trip to Europe next month. I am going to spend a few weeks trying to find the G-Spot on a selection of Polish women."

I bet his expenses claim makes funny reading too - I wonder what the IRS will make of it.

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Google Drive stalls on LAUNCH DAY

JohnG
Headmaster

Re: Drive not ready

"I don't see microsoft giving us street view"

Actually, Bing now has a StreetView lookalike called StreetSide.

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JohnG

Re: Point?

I guess Google already have a substantial user base and Drive neatly dovetails with their existing Docs service, allowing some types of files stored in Drive to be viewed/edited from within a browser. The sharing feature is pretty straightforward but I haven't yet tried the feature where you can hand ownership of some shared files to someone else.

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JohnG

Re: Windows

Me too. It was activated some minutes after I selected "Notify me when my drive is ready" option.

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Hamburg court: Google must police YouTube content

JohnG

Re: I wonder ...

"I wonder what the loss to Google would be, of not supplying YouTube to Germany ?"

Google do provide You Tube in Germany but for many videos clips, users will get this message instead of the chosen clip:

"Unfortunately, this video is not available in Germany, because it may contain music for which GEMA has not granted the respective music rights.

Sorry about that."

This applies to music from artists from around the world, not just German artists.

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Ten... Satnavs to suit all budgets

JohnG

Re: Motorbike Satnavs?

Medion have some sat navs for car use (i.e. not waterproofed) under £200 with Bluetooth - but I think the Bluetooth may be to use the sat nav as a handsfree kit, rather than to output to a Bluetooth headset. However, Medions and some other brands can output on VHF FM, if that is of any help.

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Austrian village considers a F**king name change

JohnG

Attributed without evidence

"...despite a spate of thefts of its road signs, largely attributed to itinerant snickering Brits."

....because Austrian and Germans can't speak any English and have no knowledge of the word "Fuck". Never mind all the other English speaking visitors to the area - it must be the Brits.

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Gmail goes titsup for 30 MILLION PUNTERS

JohnG

Re: Chocolate factory mail melt down

It was the strain of all those Easter eggs.

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Student's Linux daemon 0-day triggers InfoSec Institute outcry

JohnG

Re: where the buck stops

"Read the EULA - they're not responsible for anything at all anywhere ever"

They wish. Just because you write something in an EULA doesn't mean you can enforce it - especially if it flies in the face of consumer protection law. (As Apple have recently discovered in Italy).

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