* Posts by Alister

3335 posts • joined 19 May 2010

Robots. Machine learnin', 3D-printin' AI robots: They'll take our jobs – Davos

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That was looming!

999 What's your emergency: Mega millions Met call handling IT muckup?

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Re: Ideology

And statements like; enabled for multi channel public interaction delivering improved situational awareness, predictive analytics and data sharing, just reek of meaningless bullshit.

Amen brother...

El Reg mulls entering Robot Wars arena

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Re: A no-brainer, Shirley?

Yep, I was going to suggest the El Reg vulture head, cast from titanium, with a sharpened beak, powered by hydraulics much like the original Razor, and then possibly a flipper / self-righter as a secondary weapon.

SpaceX: launch, check. Landing? Needs work

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Maybe trying to land on a floating deck which is moving about all over the place - despite thrusters and stabilizers etc - is just a step too far.

Even if the control of the rocket is perfect, you can still end up being smacked in the face by the landing platform.

I know that's not the apparent primary cause of this RUD (lol) but it surely is a factor.

China names the date for dark side moon landing

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Does going to the moon count as interplanetary? Genuine question.

My personal view is that you would have to travel outside of the furthest orbit of any planet's moon(s) to really count as an interplanetary journey, but I'm not sure that's the widely accepted definition.

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Hopefully not too similar: the “Jade Rabbit” lander dispatched on Chang'e-3 experienced a mechanical control abnormality and then broke down completely after only a couple of months' operations.

Given that the Jade Rabbit was China's first attempt, I find the tone of the above a bit strange. "broke down completely after only a couple of months" seems to suggest this was somehow a failure.

When you look at how many NASA landers and probes failed to function at all, the fact that Jade Rabbit lasted a couple of months seems to me to be worthy of praise, not condemnation.

Hot Swedish nurses in charity calendar rumpus

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@Old Handle

Yep, you should use the paddles at arm's length, and make damn sure no part of the patient can possibly touch you even if they move when you shock them.

I've had a partial shock once, whilst attempting to cardiovert someone on wet grass when I was kneeling next to them, It bloody hurts!

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I really, really hope he never uses the defibrillator like that for real, or there'll be two dead people on the trolley.

BBC risks wrath of android rights activists with Robot Wars reboot

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Re: Sadly my line manager hates flying

Last time I checked Glasgow was accessible by road and rail from England!

and by sea!!

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Re: Who is presenting?

Yep, I'd go with that, or even Robert Llewellyn and Lisa Rogers.

Late night server rebuild led to 'nightmares about mutilated corpses'

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It's Friday, your correspondent is back from summer holidays

Wait! What??

Is this a rehashed article, or are you an antipodean?

FTC apologizes for leaking attendee details … to privacy conference

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This was, of course, done deliberately to act as a talking point for the conference...


Oh well, worth a try.

2015 was the Year of the Linux Phone ... Nah, we're messing with you

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Then again, many, perhaps most, ATM users are Linux users

Hmm, not sure of that, either. Every broken ATM I've ever seen in the UK is running Windows CE of some sort - hence why it's broken, probably...

DWP building a separate ID tool as Verify can’t cut it, whisper sources

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Re: This is a solved problem surely?

Thanks to two factor authentication my bank knows exactly who I am. Thanks to the wonders of encryption I can be fairly sure that no prying eyes can read the contents of my transmissions.

Maybe they're trying to implement a secure solution without using encryption - after all, encryption = terrist, doesn't it?

Server retired after 18 years and ten months – beat that, readers!

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Well it isn't a proper server, but I'm still running a Mesh Pentium 90 Desktop from 1995-ish which is now used as a NAS at home. It's got 96MB RAM, and a PCI Sata Raid card with two 250GB Drives, and runs the Linux Free-Nas software distro booted off a LiveCD.

The motherboard, processor and RAM are all the original items though, so they're doing pretty well for being 20 years old.

Learn you Func Prog on five minute quick!

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Yay! Stob!

I've been pining.

but not for Fjords...

Just Verity.

Join The Register at Enigma, USENIX’s new security conference

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Is amanfrommars1 a secret test of an advanced AI? or just a textbot with pretensions.

I'm curious to know what criteria are used to decide which threads it posts on though.

We know this isn't about PRISM, Matt Warman MP. But do you?

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He really doesn't get it, does he?

Microsoft’s Get Windows 10 nagware shows signs of sentience

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Larger enterprise users are not eligible for Windows 10 upgrades, so don’t receive the GWX nagware that’s been plaguing Home and Professional Edition users for six months.

It was originally my understanding that if you ran Windows 7 joined to a domain, then GWX would ignore you, however this seems not to be the case anymore, as I've had to play whack-a-mole on a number of my domain member desktops recently.

GWX certainly bears all the hallmarks of professionally built malware with hidden processes and unauthorised registry changes, even using obfuscated folder names ($WINDOWS.~BT) for the download.

Eric Schmidt, for one, welcomes our new robot overlords

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Kubrick did a good job!

It still gives me a shiver when I see HAL's beady eye staring at me.

(see photo).

EE, O2, Giffgaff, BT Mobile customers cut off as mobile networks fail

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Re: Let me shed some light....

we pump out about several thousand calls an hour

You wouldn't be working for a cold-calling company, would you?

The Police Chief's photo library mixed business, pleasure and flesh

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Merry Christmas

To you Simon, and all at the Reg.

Microsoft releases major PowerShell update after long preview

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For Fucks sake, what is the point of posting your stupid Linux crap as a reply to my post?

The point I was making is that although Microsoft are trying to push users to Install Server Core, in fact to carry out useful workloads, you have to install the GUI anyway.

In what way does your post help or enlarge on that point?

Oh, and just FYI I administer both Linux and Windows servers, depending on the requirements of the business, and the needs of our clients, and they are definitely not interchangeable for all cases.

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PowerShell is critical to Microsoft's plans for Windows Server. The company is trying to persuade admins to install Windows Server without a GUI shell at all, where possible, making PowerShell essential

Yeah, except for some of the commonly used roles, (File Server, IIS Server, SQL Server etc) there are things that you still have to use the GUI for, which are not accessible in PowerShell, which makes a nonsense of the whole thing.

Software engineer sobers up to deal with 2:00 AM trouble at mill

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Re: What a hero

Trouble at Mill was it???

Aye lad, one on't cross beams gone owt askew on't treddle.

El Reg picked a pack of ace pic-titlers

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"I can't hold this headline up for much longer!"

There's an epidemic of idiots who can't find power switches

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Re: On the plus side...

Surely the last thing needed is a bunch of IT - savvy users.

Oh Gods! There is nothing worse than a user who thinks they are IT - savvy,

They will wilfully ignore advice or instructions, as they think they know better, and swear blind they never touched anything, when it's obvious they have.

The ball's in your court, Bezos: Falcon 9 lands after launching satellites

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Superb bit of video, sent real shivers up my spine.

Isn't it curious how we've seen spaceships land like this for decades in Sci-Fi films and TV shows, but to see it actually happen for real somehow is just so much more awesome.

Microsoft grabs ex-Google and Facebook brains for unstructured SQL engine

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Vassilakis lead Google’s work on Dremel and founded Metanautix with Lerios to bring the technology to a broader, enderptise audience.

Surely this isn't just a typo, but a comment by the author on Enterprise level companies?

Security sweep firm links botnet infestation and file sharing

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I can't help feeling this article deserves the icon here ---->>>>

Free Wi-Fi for the NHS, promises health secretary Jeremy Hunt

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Such a move would allow patients staying in hospital to self-monitor their conditions using apps and reduce admin time for doctors and nurses

A difficult decision: spend 1bn on wages to employ doctors and nurses to provide proper care, or spend it on allowing patients to try and care for themselves instead.


UK government names Cloud Foundry Her Majesty's preferred PaaS

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Cloud Foundry (by appointment to HMG)

Can they put that on their website now?

CES tech show adds new security checks after fears of violence

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Re: Are you clueless?

How many people must die before the general public comes to understand that the world is now engaged in a war against terrorism that is likely to last for eternity?

You do know that San Bernardino was a mass-shooting incident, like Houston, or Platt, or Roseburg, with no compelling evidence of terrorist links?

How many people have died as a result of mass shootings in the US in 2015?

There have been 353 reported incidents, in which 446 people have died.


Which is the more worrying thing, mass-shootings, or "terrorism"?

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"Bags and backpacks with many pockets are not helpful,"

Maybe not, if you're an exhibition organiser...

However, if you're a typical exhibition attendee, then just throwing your laptop, fondleslab, phone, and 30 different USB dongles and chargers into a mesh shopping bag is probably sub-optimal...

Bigger than Higgs? Boffins see hints of bulbous new Boson

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So if a particle has the same predicted mass, spin, charge and decay as the predicted Higgs, I'd call it a Higgs.

If it looks like a Higgs, swims spins like a Higgs, and quacks quarks like a Higgs, it's a Duck Higgs...

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Re: As heard by ATLAS experimenters

Aww, you spoiled it in the last sentence, should have gone with:

And it shall be called …………. the "Slightly Larger Hadron Collider."

Philips backs down over firmware that adds DRM to light

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Re: @Grade% - Aww, who'd a thunk it.

Lister: We don't LIKE muffins around here! We want no muffins, no toast, no teacakes, no buns, baps, baguettes or bagels, no croissants, no crumpets, no pancakes, no potato cakes and no hot-cross buns and DEFINITELY no smegging flapjacks!

Toaster: Aah, so you're a waffle man!

FCC gives small ISPs a pass on open internet rules

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Does anyone proof read these articles?

Yes, you.

Physics uses warp theory to look beyond relativity

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This article was originally published in the January 2016 edition...

WOW! Time Travel!

Bungled storage upgrade led to Google cloud brownout

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I wonder, is there anywhere which shows just how many outages Google's services have suffered this year?

Oh, the irony, a quick bit of googling produces these figures:

Feb 18 Google Compute engine down about 1 hour

Mar 9 Google Compute engine down about 45 min

May 3 Google Play, Hangouts, Mail down about 3 hours

Jun 19 Google App Engine down about 4 hours

Aug 14 Google Compute Storage 11 hours of brownouts

Aug 27 Google Cloud Storage down for 9 hours

Oct 9 Google Apps, Docs down for 5 hours

Dec 8 Google Container Engine loss of services for 21 hours

Dec 17 Google App Engine authenication failures for 17 hours

I make that 71 hours and 45 minutes of outages this year.

How many nines is that?

Cyber security buck stops with me, says Dido Harding

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She said the company had wanted to inform customers of the breach sooner, but had been advised by police not to do so. "One of the most difficult periods was the first 36 hours of the attack," she said. The company had received a ransom demand and had informed the police. "The next day it was very clear there was a real risk material number of customers data stolen."

She said: "I was clear by lunchtime [the next day] that the sensible thing to do to warn customers, that would make them safer. For understandable reasons, advice received from the police was not to warn our customers."

If you can manage to unscramble the nonsense above and turn it into reasonable English, it still remains complete bollocks.

The ransom demand received was pertaining to the DDOS attacks, and there is no possible way that a DDOS can, on its own, cause a loss of customer data, although obviously it can be used to screen other attacks.

That makes a nonsense of the statement "The next day it was very clear there was a real risk [ of a ] material number of customers data [ being ] stolen"

Why would that be very clear? And why would the police have anything to do with that breach, when what they were investigating was a ransom note pertaining to further a DDOS?

The DDOS had nothing to do with the loss of data, and to conflate the two as Dido has, just shows the total lack of grasp she has on the whole affair. It's no wonder they are unable to tell what data is missing yet, when they clearly have no idea what occured.

This whole statement is as confused now as her original outpourings were when the incident happened.

Mozilla looses Firefox 43, including Windows 64-bit variant

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Re: lose...looses


Um yeeesss? My point, exactly.

Increasingly, I see commentards spelling lose - as in mislay or cease to have, as loose.

Hence my comment.

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Given that nobody seems able to spell the word correctly anymore, I wonder how many read that headline as "Mozilla Loses Firefox 43".

Grim-faced cosmonaut in ISS manual docking nail-biter

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Yuri Malenchenko's serious demeanour expained

So you're really wanting us to believe that he knew the Kurs Rendezvous System was going to break, 5 hours before it did??

If so, he should quit being a Cosmonaut, he can make much more money as a fortune teller.

Lettuce-nibbling veggies menace Mother Earth

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Re: This particular study is getting splashed all over.

instead the guidelines talk abstractly about eating less SOFAS

Well personally I can only manage a two-seater normally, although I might sneak a recliner armchair for supper if I'm really hungry.

Brit 'naut Tim Peake thunders aloft

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Interesting. One tends to think of Astronauts / Cosmonauts as young people, and it's only since watching the BBC coverage that I realised the median age of the latest three is 52.

How to build a real lightsabre

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What! Waddaya mean Santa Claus isn't real? Who reads my letters every year then, hey?


Help! What does 'personal conduct unrelated to operations or financials' mean?

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Re: Gross Moral Turpitude?

but rogering a donkey... in the chapel...during the sermon..?

That's a different offence... Muffin' the Mule...

For a long time I thought Turpitude was what you used to clean paint brushes...

Alister Silver badge

nothing likely to incite hatred, ridicule or contempt

That's a bit limiting. I agree with nothing likely to incite hatred, but surely a bit of ridicule or contempt is fair game?

New gear needed to capture net connection records, say ISPs

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Re: Privacy nightmare in the Internet slow lane

They do not see every packet and therefore can't track individual connections, what seems to be required by the proposed legislation is deep-packet inspection (as they want seem to want to examine the protocol and payload for URI logging) on every packet. I suspect politicians have seen some graphs of traffic classified by type, put 2 and 2 together and made 5.

Exactly this!

The politicians have been trying to sell this on the basis that "well the ISPs already collect this traffic, we just want to legislate the retention of the data", but in fact NO ISP does routine DPI on every single connection, currently.

This will require a load of infrastructure changes and a massive amount of new equipment to implement, and if they really want to extend this to any company which provides connectivity then a lot of the small ISPs will be out of business.

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