* Posts by David Shaw

135 posts • joined 23 May 2007

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Britain's warhead-watcher to simulate Trident nukes with Atos supercomputer

David Shaw

Re: Hmm

We also use a lot of (sadly, sharkless - more octopus-like) lasers for testing the nuclear materiel.

I think it wouldn't fit in an old saucepan, perhaps a large Le Creuset?

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Fresh cotton underpants fix series of mysterious mainframe crashes

David Shaw

Re: Finger of death

point her finger at the screen from a distance of a number of centimetres and it would die.

I saw this happen to a live System-X (telecom) switch in central London, I'd taken my team of 20 budding engineers to look at the room filled with humming boxes, and an operations engineer pointed to the nearest PCM Concentrator unit. The other Concentrators and the cross-connect switching seemed to carry on - but all hell broke loose as a few thousand trading calls stopped.

I'm quite sure it was a gesture from around 3-feet away, I think the floor was correctly dissipative, dunno what underwear/pants were involved but Cable & W certainly stopped 'tourism' after that.

The O&M was rather fantastic getting new cards in & working within ten-minutes. Also late 80s.

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David Shaw

Re: ughh- No static at all?

its quite possible that you're not getting a 'static' belt, but the 'leakage current' through the RF suppression components. On a Macbook this leakage can be solved by using an official earthed power lead into the white square blob instead of a generic figure-of-eight twin lead mains plug. If you're already using a 3-pin plug then its time to check for earth (non)-continuity, perhaps through adapters or extension leads?

the (safeish) leakage current of about half-a-milliamp (typical) on a metal framed laptop is floating at half the mains volts, so around 1.4 milliNylonBloomers - others describe the Macbook as feeling tickly - as the back of the hand can detect the alternating current quite well. Lenovo's have the charger with an earthed clover connector - many 'plastic' Lenovos are stuffed with light metal alloys that can also 'buzz' without an earth. . .and remember you can run MacOS Sierra on an X220 with a de-whitelisted BIOS & a £20 wifi card, allegedly.

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PC rebooted every time user flushed the toilet

David Shaw

Re: Yank here.

Yes, "That device sounds suspiciously like a ferroresonant power conditioner." I found one of these in the HVPSU of an Austrian designed TV transmitter/transverter that I installed in the fairly peaceful and very beautiful KSA/Yemeni Asir border area in the '80s.

the ferroresonant device was 50Hz, but the previously installed TV repeater station genset was 60Hz, I was able to fudge it once I had worked out why the tetrode EHT fuses were popping! (for some reason I ate mostly parmesan cheese whilst doing this maintenance as the local market of horribly beweaponed ghat growing tribes sold whole round cheeses) The UHF driver amplifier was also multimoding as a second fault, and had to be filled with a lot of aluminium foil inside a plastic bag, to try and dampen down the feedback/gain/sprogs, all this whilst trying to breathe at 3500 metres asl, on top of Jabel Fayfa.

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Millimetre wave.. omigerd it's going nowherrr.. Apple, you say?

David Shaw

~60GHz, IIRC, is (soon) going to be the ubiquitous Internet of Cars M2M - think the cell is around a hundred metres. That will be big business.

The Ham bands at 47GHz and 24GHz have achieved many hundreds of kilometres direct range, with good preparation, and worldwide coverage via a lunar reflector - with a lot of care.

Some of the very small motes for next generation computing nodes only have enough space for a λ/4 mmW array - so that's a niche use for the sort of IoT stuff that you buy by the kilogram.

cognitive/white-space was also supposed to solve the 'spectrum' - with my £20 NooElec (. . ..co.uk/dp/B01HA642SW/) I can see rather a lot of empty stuff, but thats just upto 0.0017THz, using SDR# on Win & Gqrx (old standalone) app on macOS newer macOS GQRX here

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'Jaff' argh snakes: 5m emails/hour ransomware floods inboxes

David Shaw

Re: If you want to help scientifically test email providers for security/etc

thanks aCynic , yes canonically the email provider test is at mesa.jrc.ec.europa.eu (why we need three 'europes' in the URL is beyond me!)

a typical result is here

STARTTLS CERTIFICATE SPF DKIM DMARC DANE DNSSEC

100 50 100 100 100 0 0

which ended up providing 'minimum security' - all weird & wonderful providers welcome

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David Shaw
Coat

If you want to help scientifically test email providers for security/etc

https://mesa.jrc.ec.europa

(I don't get to see any of the logs, so it's quite a safe test)

It showed me that one of my email services was open to fraud/spam, and that two of them were probably ok!

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PC repair chap lets tech support scammer log on to his PC. His Linux PC

David Shaw

professional scammers

I work in Italy, so I was mildly surprised when I received a phone call from a UK '0345' number.

He/she/it/they said "Hello Mr. Shaw" in perfect English to which I replied in Italian, for the lulz.

He/she/it/they continued the conversation in Italian (wow!), claiming to be from Intel UK - wanting to send me "a pdf" of their latest processors.

I graciously declined his/her/its/their kind offer of a Remote Access Trojan or whatever, and they hung-up.

Perfectly professional, courteous, and slightly more intimidating than a run of the mill scammer - and FYI I use very-offline PGP (with a 3 month validity) at a non-networked PC when I en/de/crypt messages to that particular CERT - so in the end, fruitless - but carry-on chaps/chapettes/. . .

I get the MS calls from Asia too, but just leave the phone next to the radio whilst I simulate looking for the Windows administrator, until they too give-up. . .

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RF pulses from dust collisions could be killing satellites

David Shaw

the VNIIEF January 1952 andrei sakharov emp grenade-generator, where he used tnt to blow apart a single loop of coppery/plasma with circulating high current was similar to this? basically back-emf EMP as an electromagnet turned to scattering dust. the small mass of the particle in the satellite case has rather a lot more momentum than a hundred grams of exothermic chemical, but would the overall energies be similar!

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David Shaw

Re: Impact --> dense plasma --> charge separation due to differential velocity--> RF pulse

you can actually unroll a reel of sellotape in a vacuum to get X-rays, without DARPA

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Chap 'fixes' Microsoft's Windows 7 and 8 update block on new CPUs

David Shaw

for those dedicated Astronomy apps why not try using, say, Windows 7 in a VM on a 2012 core-i5 Macmini (12GB)

OS X 'El Capitan' (10.11.6) runs Win7x64 in VMware Fusion 6.0.6 very well - snappily even!

macOS 'Sierra' (10.12.4) runs Win7x64 in Parallels Desktop 12 reasonably well (it was cheaper than the VMWare 8.5 upgrade) however kids complain that Roblox is laggy - it was better in VMware 6.0.6

or, install Linux Mint on a multi-core/multi-thread PC with 12 - 16GB RAM then sudo apt-get install virtualbox;sudo apt-get install virtualbox-guest-dkms

I just counted and I now have around thirty VM's on disk, I'll be migrating some to my new Pentium Kaby Lake G4560 build

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Regulate This! Time to subject algorithms to our laws

David Shaw
Flame

Re: what...

The {national} parliament{s} these days even seems to bypass close scrutiny of any draft legislation.

I seem to recall one of the early ILETS data-retention laws being passed entirely by fax!

One noble Lord in the UK briefly noticed, but he was told to calm down as "it wasn't that important" - just seemingly - at present illegal per ECJ

As for the algos, by the time the Amazon Cloud has finished training my software defined architecture, can even I understand the rules, never mind explain it to the Palatial incumbents?

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Smart meter firm EDMI asked UK for £7m to change a single component

David Shaw

I've got (so-far) three smart meters at home

A reads the left side of the house for one energy supplier [or it should] (LCD display has failed so I can no longer read it locally - I'm going to have to wire an arduino up to count the kWh led pulses)

B reads the right side of the house for another energy supplier

and a third one C checks what output my main FIT PV-array has, (installed immediately after the inverter to ensure that I don't cheat to get bigger FIT payments) [or they should]

The reality is that all my meters are read by company B, who sometimes send my consumption data to company A for billing, [once they delayed the data by a whole year] My B & C smartmeters are also not accurate for receiving my FIT payments as I'm simply receiving "an average" for my 3kWp array - I'm getting identical payments to a local friend. Maybe one-day they will correct with over/under payments?

As a new hobby, I've just bought a new set of PV components (from a major online book-seller) :- couple of "12V" 100Wp poly modules from somewhere in the EU@£80-ish each and a £79 MPPT 18V 600W grid-tie micro-inverter. I'll be feeding this 230V into smartmeter A, checking carefully to ensure that it doesn't register my generation as power-consumption! [smartmeters often don't run backwards] I hope to just get rid of my base-load on that side of the house. All lights are already LED.

In this part of the EU I was given no-option / zero choice about the first two meters, and had to accept the checksum meter as part of the FIT contract. It's good that you might get a choice in UK, if you say "NO" a lot when offered.

The initial load-shedding function hypothesis envisaged of smartmeters is that they will connect through a domotic API for turning off the fridge and freezer for a few hours [without any risk of spoiling the food], then progressively shed further loads until potentially fully off. However it seems that the current generation doesn't do that, my fridge & freezers certainly don't do that, and I don't really want to pay multi-millions to billions to implement this, without a lot more debate.

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BlackBerry sued by hundreds of staffers 'fooled' into quitting

David Shaw

Re: @two-weeks Legality

friends of mine worked in the US High Energy Physics sector/DoE, and their immediate line boss preferred/expected them to A) regularly work on Saturday - and B) choose to spend their 2-week vacation in the office. They are still advertising for a few people here https://jobs-us.technomedia.com/fermilab/

Here in the EU, working a basic 40-hrs/week, I do look forward to weekends off at least.

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A webcam is not so much a leering eye as the barrel of a gun

David Shaw

I'm of course fully protected by an Arduino 'Hacked" sticker over my mac webcam/mic - and further by use of the free software produced by (allegedly) ex-NSA engineers here https://objective-see.com/products/oversight.html

I just need http://kgb.by/ to release a tool to monitor my ex-NSA monitor. . . etc

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Ex-FBI man spills on why hackers are winning the security game

David Shaw

Re: Comfortable illusions about computer security

What we need is to design 'computers' that can't be hacked by opening an email attachment or clicking on a URL

I taught/mentored a few kids to develop a dedicated RaspberryPi "email-only PC", which was locked down so as not to give internet access to potential malware, to separate HTTP/HTTPS browsing and mail - at a cost of around £25. The idea was that the family/work more expensive/more capable Desktop PC then does everything but Mail (with badvert blocking too). They won a science prize at a school science symposium in Munich with their prototypes. Prototypes worked great!

You can , of course, achieve similar results by upcycling an older generation mobile phone/tablet configured just for 'generic' (your public) mail access, download your bulk mail in batches like UUCP, go offline, when you have time/energy try deleting most of the crud, queue the important validated mail for delivery to your work/home PC's (not very public) mail address , use DMARC validated services everywhere, certificate verification everywhere. It's all possible, but yes - there are many grey/black-hat opponents amongst the squirrels/seagulls data/sardines, trawling - to paraphrase a Cantona.

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UK defence secretary: Russian hacks are destabilising Western democracy

David Shaw
Linux

oops

OK, fair-point, wasn't planned. I deleted the various /log/nginx access.log files without reading them.

I don't have time to map everyone with infosniper.net, and shirley everyone reads El'Reg via TAiLS anyway?

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David Shaw

Guardian.com Nov2016 "Why is MI5 making such a fuss about Russia?"

summary (from a foreign correspondent):

1) blaming Russia carries little cost & is/(used to be) aligned with USA policy

2) UK population seems to be getting more sceptical

"for all MI5’s warnings, maybe Russia’s time as the UK’s all-purpose fall guy is nearing its end."

Disclosure: I visited Moscow in 1975, it was grey, smelly & scary.

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Naughty sysadmins use dark magic to fix PCs for clueless users

David Shaw

Re: I am not making this up...

apocryphal story at one of my workplaces that a very annoying PHB had his Olivetti 386 similarly (deliberately) made unreliable, by rubbing two old brillo-pads together 5 inches above the mobo, allegedly . . . months of random BSOD

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China's Great Firewall to crack down on unofficial VPNs – state-approved net connections only

David Shaw

how far?

consider that in Sweden in the 1950's the (forerunner to) Försvarets radioanstalt had wired up a surprisingly large percentage of homes to a centralised morse code click detection system. They were looking for HF transmissions, heading eastwards. This was sort-of a great RF Firewall. Nowadays achieved by a few SDRs e.g. http://hackgreensdr.org:8901/

What is the budget for the creation of your stegano compared to the budget that will be deployed against you?

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David Shaw

Re: SSL

for a while, the Kindle/paperwhite/Voyage 3G using perma-licensed Amazon "whispernet" & experimental-mode browsing could get 50 megs of data a month through the GFW. I'm sure the regime was aware, but recognised it as a limited 'foreign-devil' type problem therefore not that serious.

This map shows it is fairly localised 'free 3G' http://client0.cellmaps.com/tabs.html#cellmaps_intl_tab

not much coverage in Uyghur areas, probably not many Amazon Prime accounts there either. . .

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5G? Pff, don't bother, says one-time Ofcom man's new book

David Shaw
Happy

Re: What good is 5G when 1G doesn't even work?

Good reply, except why is there no 2G at Stansted airport? Lots of phones! No masts!

Specifically upper stories of the airport hotel, roaming with an EU Vodafone SIM, 2016.

No 2G network! not even hanging out the window

Mesh still has a future,

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David Shaw
Holmes

Re: What good is 5G when 1G doesn't even work?

On 2G->3G expensive, and patchy, infrastructural upgrade. I was chatting to a Swedish telecom professor a decade ago. He'd worked out that the upcoming smartphones could easily support a decentralised mesh network based voice, txt & more data than tetra; given the deployed density of handsets; the fact that a phone could drop down to milliwatt levels to communicate to the next white node; the fact that basically NO INFRASTRUCTURE would be needed, just a new waveform; no scary BTS antennas next to schools. It would have been very cheap to deploy, it would have relied on having neighbours.

For some reason the excellent hard-working telecom ITU etc standards consultants wouldn't talk to him then?

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A single typo may have tipped US election Trump's way

David Shaw

this NYT story is plausible, but there exists an equally plausible counternarrative?

as I dont work for the NSA, who are the only people outside of the KGB who actually know what happened, I can only read widely on this "phish or not" story. . .

Interestingly, the UK's former ambassador to Uzbekistan has reported that *HE* brought these emails over to JulianAss.(TM), having found them behind a tree in Election-Land.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4034038/Ex-British-ambassador-WikiLeaks-operative-claims-Russia-did-NOT-provide-Clinton-emails-handed-D-C-park-intermediary-disgusted-Democratic-insiders.html

Well, isn't the great game complicated!

I'm normally pro Craig for his manifest integrity, but as I said, the secret squirrels on both sides know what actually happened, will they bother sharing with the internet using citizens or the voting citizens or the rest of the world?

typo's aside, have a great festive season, if you can

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Sysadmin figures out dating agency worker lied in his profile

David Shaw

the day that we found out. . .

that our top boss, as in the very highest boss, who we shall pseudonymously call "Barry", bought his doctorate online from Pacific West University for $50 (allegedly)

he was coincidentally downgraded to minister in charge of counting fish the next week, (allegedly), (how many more allegedly's do I need?)

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We wanna give IoT folk kilobit data rates, beam NB-IoT telcos

David Shaw

Re: Not necessarily a bad idea

I think some of the NB-IoT will be working à la GPS, below the noise floor, being greatly time/frequency synchronised - taking ideas perhaps from the K1JT WSPR projects

http://physics.princeton.edu/pulsar/K1JT/wspr.html

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Demo may have frozen, but narrowband IoT stew is still piping hot

David Shaw

i already have a 'sigfox" NB-IoT

on my desk for 'playing' (built into an Arduino on sale at RS-Components)

I havent found a sigfox BTS with it yet, but according to https://www.sigfox.com/en/coverage there is some UK coverage already.

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Why I just bought a MacBook Air instead of the new Pro

David Shaw
Flame

Re: interesting

Well, for a £700 saving there's this on UK refurb today: Refurbished 15.4-inch (May2015) MacBook Pro 2.2GHz quad-core Intel i7 with Retina display_£1,609.00 16GB_RAM/256GB_SSD

you'd have to crayon in the emojis on the Function Keys tho'

A tale of caution tho' if people are *really* after 'raw power' faster CPU etc, well - ever since I melted my Early2011 MBP mobo doing maths, I cautiously bought an IBM server with a very large number of Xeon cores & 100GB of RAM, then progressed to crates with multiple K series GPUs , (lots of 1080s on order now) to do the math without melting! (and I can remote access it easily through multi factor auth)

I think buying an MBA , whether today's /uk/shop/product/FMGG2B/A/refurbished-133-inch-macbook-air-16ghz-dual-core-intel-core-i5 (March 2015 model)@£929 or one of the new ones is probably the best path. . .

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Apple admits the iPhone 6 Plus has 'Touch Disease'

David Shaw

Re: iFixit's teardown of macbook touchbar

the wrong-type of solder problem was certainly an accidental design flaw, though for my Early 2011 Quad-core i7 MBP the shared-CPU/GPU heatsink design also contributed, failing as soon as I did 'heavy' processing. Apple then refused a repair, as ' we have no knowledge of this BGA failure ' - which was and remains b0ll0cks.

Isn't the current deliberate fail industry component simply known as the "warranty cap"?

http://www.nerdybynature.com/2013/10/26/fix-a-fried-asus-rt-n16/

With a really nicely designed mobo, a new thermally engineered, beautifully laid-out Apple laptop could easily be designed to last 20 years; my fatMac512k+5MB HDD still works, the II's are OK, the LC's work - but their Sony monitors dont, the various weirdly shaped boxy powermacs are OK, the teardrop iMacs still work, originals+DV, my eMacs are a bit iffy (hot PSUs), the G4 macMinis refuse to die - need tenfourfox browser nowadays, all my lappies from newton, Duo, green Clamshell, white iBooks, various flat panel iMacs, unibodies, Airs work well, however mostly plugged-in, as batteries are fragile after 5 years (they have a tendency to balloon-fail at age 3-years) I use a MacPro hexacore 3.33GHz at work, still very decent and nearly as uptodate as the wastebin design!

Anyway, I recently bought my kids used/refurb Lenovo X220/X230 for college to avoid inevitable fruit "shrinkage" - who wants to nick a dusty, black, not shiny linux laptop? (maxed internals, keyboard vented for accidental drink spills, designed to last with SSDs)

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UK warships to have less firepower than 19th century equivalents as missiles withdrawn

David Shaw
Black Helicopters

MRV HMNZS Canterbury has a 4.5" gun

Has just delivered food/water & evacuated ~450 tourists today from a spot of bother on South Island, UK ought to have/keep something MRV around, just-in-case?

I worked on the GWS-25, everything that I thought was classified seems to now be on Wikipedia!

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Security bods find Android phoning home. Home being China

David Shaw

I prefer http://www.infosniper.net, gives you a decent handful of detailed look-ups per day, and a nice map

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Power cut interrupts UK.gov cloud service supplier

David Shaw

Re: Somebody not testing their DR precautions?

Yes, I saw this happen 'live' at a 'telco' MIx trunk access node when we tested the mightily impressive twin Rolls Royce diesels;

"Yes, all OK power is . . .oops" as multiple 565megabits WDM fibres went rather too dark, and (most) traffic was re-routed via Edinburgh

the 'worser' thing was on the cable laying ship when the repeater went overboard - 'but I thought *you* had connected the fibre'

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Low-end notebook, rocking horse shit or hen's teeth

David Shaw

I was very surprised & impressed to see an extensive range of Chromebooks in the PC World store on Leeds Headrow last month. They still sell them online for prices lower than AMZN, ~£140.

I bought a refurb Acer C720P Chromebook on May 27th 2014 direct from the US. Since then it has worked faithfully (about 24h/day) for the needs of one of my teenagers. It is faster than when I bought it. It does school homework perfectly, music/bands/chat seamlessly. I have just needed a replacement charger as the pin falls out when the lappy is dropped, no magsafe.

At same time I bought a refurb MacBookPro8,1 (Apple MacBook Pro "Core i5" 2.3 13" Early 2011 4GB RAM 320GB 5400rpm HDD) for a similar teen. The HDD had to be upgraded after a year to a 1TB HybridSSD. It's now going through a 4 ->8GB RAM upgrade and the (PS4 fave) upgrade of a Seagate-ST2000LX001 firecuda 2TB H-SSD, as the user perceives it as 'too slow'.

one of the Lappys cost $221 + €40-psu [=£210], the other cost €650 + €99-1TB + €99-2TB +€49-8GB [=£760], over the 2.5 years, but price isn't the only thing - and surprisingly the cheapest not only has a touchscreen & worked flawlessly, but I did also spend some time resolving the DNS badvertising virusy-thing hijack on the expensive fruity Mavericks which gave quite a bit of downtime. I'd say for an average modern youth, you might be 3.6 times better off buying a low end chromebook rather than a low end apple (from a single datapoint!)

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Stolen passwords integrated into the ultimate dictionary attack

David Shaw

Re: What's a "security-savvy user"

from a quick read of the ACM paper, I think he means that the 'standard users' use "123456" everywhere, and the 'security-savvy user' however use different pw's for the different websites: such as '123456eBay' and '123456BraclaysBonk'; the very clever Wang team have decided that they can guess 30% of the time what Mr. Savvy uses at Yahoo!

(I think I agree with you that the really really savvy users just won't go near the !)

I leave you with a just-announced revolution, totally OT http://cogink.com/cleese/

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'Pavement power' - The bad idea that never seems to die

David Shaw

Re: Still waiting

there are some in-building ideas for the future for piezo, it helps the 'fix-and-forget' sensor node models for smart-buildings/smart-components, building on DECT-ULE or 802.15.4 at around the ten-packets-per-hour rate. No more running out and buying 3700 'AAA' or was it 3700 'R-14's', to keep the HAECS (home automation, energy control and security) systems on-line.

one study thought that tidal nation land-mass tilt/deformations might even provide enough to power the soon to be ubiquitous sensor nodes . . .?

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Join the Q: British intel agencies seek tech-savvy apprentices

David Shaw
Go

Nearly right ( re:CV rejection)

I pursued a full technician apprenticeship, at the world's first wireless factory, was put through technical college for a 'tec then 'HNC' (higher tec). I did start a degree in science at the OU but haven't finished it yet. Where I did find a career (after a U.K. defence downturn when I was suggested by HR to 'flee') was first Germany, they are used to apprenticeships & technical qualifications. So I enjoyed my work at R&S and was very pleased to meet Dr.Rohde.

I then moved to Switzerland where CERN was extremely happy to employ 'electroniciens' - their analogue is a diploma from the Hautes Ecoles

and now I'm still in scientific research in another part of Europe, where there remains a grading structure for exactly the apprentice career. I'll probably stay here unless technical salaries in the U.K. quadruple.

I agree that in USA or say Doha, the BSc + nowadays an MSc would give a great career path in STEM. However I did earn £37.50 each week , every week, whilst an apprentoid & whilst doing the 'tec, which is a bit better than the negative 27 grand for a BSc nowadays!

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CERN also has a particle decelerator – and it’s trying to break physics

David Shaw

Re: Is it me, or?

ashamed to say that many of my CERN experiments were held together with the Ferney Voltaire equivalent of Sellotape. Many things were tried, tested & rebuilt after a few weeks. Of course, the biggest experiments used the best kit eg detectors who only use/used ROMAN lead (keels etc) from ships that sank a millennia or two ago, these foundling shielding Pb not having the post 1945 background crap found in non-submerged lead. In general everything worked, mostly very reliably, but often it just was needed for a short time. My 168 metre AA became AC then AD and was rebuilt 3 times in 4 years!

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David Shaw

the CERN precursor decelerator was called LEAR

During my brief visit to Meyrin, at the Antiproton Accelerator (AA) and Antiproton Collector (Acol) (part of the PS - Proton Synchrotron) we used to fire the occasional bunch of pbars at LEAR (Low Energy Antiproton Ring). LEAR was a cute machine, didn't need much skyshine shielding, and it successfully created the first technical antihydrogen atoms.

I'm still waiting for the AD (antiproton decelerator) experiment AD7 "GBAR" (Gravitational Behaviour of Anti-Hydrogen at Rest) to deliver.

their website is here:- https://gbar.web.cern.ch/GBAR/results/publications.php

you just don't want to know how we made/make the pbars - a lot of high energy magic from the unseen university of Sheffield!

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Apple drops dongle prices to make USB-C upgrade affordable

David Shaw

Re: FFS

I was looking in Leeds city centre last week for an Apple adapter (Thunderbolt to HDMI) but didn't buy it at the AppleStore as it was nearly 30 quid. I know that the top-gear company would have sold me a knock-off for a fiver, but I needed it that day. I did buy it at (sorry) currys/pc world, where it was just £25. I asked why they were cheaper? Currys replied that since Apple raised all their prices last week, they hadn't and so were selling ten fruity laptops per day, at sometimes £400 discount! I hope they have enough in stock.

personally I buy X & T series core-i5-lenovos (~€200), upgrade them to teh max - whatever they need, new batts(€85), new IPS screens(£60), nice 60GB mSata-SSD (£28) instead of the 3G card, + whatever SATA SSD I have lying around. The 'X' seem just as light as the MBair, have USB2&3(sometimes 3), 8 hours typing on an excellent keyboard, some family members prefer the T-420's, some the T-430. . .

and I counted at least 5 similar models here on the ISS, but nothing apple?

http://www.vishvagujarat.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/NASA-to-study-microbes-aboard-the-international-space-station-jpg-1-Copy.jpg

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Canada confiscates snoops' data nets after illegal trawling dragged up too much metadata

David Shaw

presumably this over-trawling case has nothing to do with the other recent Canadian Spook/Police 'error'

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/investigators-lagace-surveillance-1.3837270

Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, NEWS Last Updated: Nov 05, 2016 10:21 PM ET

"Should Canadian journalists assume they're being secretly watched by police?

'You cannot rely only on official truth,' Patrick Lagacé says "

Journalists rely on whistleblowers to report wrongdoing, and whistleblowers trust journalists to keep their identities secret to protect their jobs, their families and sometimes even their personal safety. It's a relationship that's fundamental to holding those in power to account.

That's why what happened this week was so remarkable.

Not one but seven Quebec journalists, including some who work for CBC's French-language service Radio-Canada, learned they have been the subjects of secret surveillance by police in Quebec.

The first revelation came Monday, when La Presse columnist Patrick Lagacé revealed that Montreal police confirmed they had been collecting metadata from his cellphone, effectively keeping tabs on every incoming and outgoing call. The data also included phone numbers for incoming texts. . .

. . .DS: Tell me what have you learned about the level of detail that was obtained about your pattern of movement?

PL: We have not been able to access what they gathered on me. But what I know is that they accessed my metadata. Hence, the phone numbers that were calling me, that I was calling. Same thing with the text messages. So not the content, if you [will]. That's what we call metadata. But the thing is, with metadata you can track and you can quite see who I'm talking to, who I'm not talking to. And this is very invasive. And for a journalist, it's almost as bad as listening in on my conversations. And they were also able, if they'd wanted — because they got a warrant for that — they were able to basically locate me in real time through the GPS in my phone. Which they say they did not do.

DS: We've focused on journalists, and that's what we've heard about this week. But should Canadians at large be concerned about this? People who are not journalists?

PL: Yes, and for a very good reason. If you want to have a healthy debate, healthy debates, in this society, you cannot rely only on official truths. You cannot rely only on what spokespersons tell you. You cannot rely only on what you find in press releases. This is what a free press does. We try to get all the facts, even the facts that institutions, like the police, doesn't want you — Canadians — to hear about. So if we cannot do that freely, we cannot have healthy debate in this country.

Should 5-eyes nation citizens at large be concerned about this? People who are not journalists, (or Supreme Court Judges)?

Luckily I'm no longer worried about questions like this. . . moving on!

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Who is out there waiting to spy on you or steal your data?

David Shaw

Internet of Stuff coming soon - quick lets encrypt all comms!

Ooops....

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/267764308_Privacy_leakages_in_Smart_Home_Wireless_Technologies

(edited with a html link as the plain text link seemed to overflow...)

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Alarming tales: What goes on INSIDE Reg hack's hi-tech bedroom

David Shaw

there are a couple of sleep-cycle apps (SleepBot Android) (Sleepcycle.com iPhone) that claim to track your sleeping pattern through the accelerometer. I haven't tried them as it seems you have to currently leave your individual 'fragile feature phone' next to you on the pillow! Their operating theory in my opinion is good tho', as my "must take children to school-bus alarm" sometimes needs to shriek at me, sometimes I am just awake to catch the first tentative trill.

the idea is that if you wish to wake up at 6:59 (plus or minus a few minutes) e.g. on Monday the bio-sensing alarm might wake you at 6:47 - just as you're lightly dozing, with a 'ping' before you are about to plunge deeply into a REM phase where even BIG BEN wouldn't work, whilst Tuesday 7:01 would be the correct time for the gentlest 'ping'?

if these 'phone on pillow' apps are version 1 , then version 2 could stick in a vague neural network(*), bit of AI, type in each night your intoxication level as another seed to the algorithms & this might work...Looks like pillows need individual accelerometers/Nike+/FitBit/attachments - USB, firewire & SCSI interfaces, and your domotic systems could wake you non-aurally - as mentioned by a previous poster - just at the right moment, with a soothing 110V 500nanoamp leakage (psu floating at half-mains with a bit of EM filter leakage) as mentioned by another previous poster or by shining a focussed 4 watt LED into your eyes, or the rotating feather method. (*)Use of BeagleBoard, Arduino, RaspberryPI and crowdsourced funding of around $6M might get the perfect alarm system by next week?

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Apple: Now that you've updated to iOS 7... YOU CAN NEVER GO BACK

David Shaw

no you can't revert

because Apple have stopped signing the iOS 6.1.4 ipsw bundle, just a few days after releasing iOS7.0

you CAN download the old firmwares here http://www.ipswdownloader.com/download-iphone-ipsw-files.php

but at present you can't run it.

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UK micro pioneer Chris Shelton: The mind behind the Nascom 1

David Shaw
Pint

Marconi students

managed to persuade the nice guys & gals in the MRSL training department that we needed a Nascom-1 in 1978. We installed it in the wonderful 'haunted' Springfield Place Grade-2 listed hostel next to the G8FKI ham system & antique broadcast TV cameras. It was a decent machine, tho' we eventually burnt out a PIO port playing music - but before that it did space invaders and other relevant entertainments of the time.

the students who played on the Nascom - some are now professors, one student even started what is now Amazon.co.uk, some obviously can't be named for legal reasons - I like to think our Nascom was helpful in all this...

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The Reg puts Vulture inside the Large Hadron Collider

David Shaw
Coat

when you write 'held together by ... tinfoil' - wasn't that just the bakeout jackets? or bakeout-shielding? - to get the UHV in my time at cern we cleaned everything, then plasma cleaned it, then roughed it down, then turbo'ed/diffusion/getter'd it down - finally baking as much of the accelerator as we could at 400 degC for days - to reduce the adsorption problems. Still had the odd beam blow-up from a rogue ionised molecule or two...

as for holding things together - we often used sellotape/scotch - to hold the really important bits together...

then in 1985 we were given one of the first transatlantic BITNET 2 megabit/s data links - "hmm, that might come in useful oneday we started to think..."

visits are a great idea - register about a year before you want the tour - and don't forget to ask where the lead (Pb) for the detector shielding comes from!

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Crack Bombe squad dismantles Reg encryption in an hour

David Shaw

tech apprenticeships are quite a brilliant way to learn and contribute to society

If GCHQ took on a massive 500 apprentoids a year and trained them - slowly over three years or so - we'd reap the benefits of this bold move for forty years. That's if they were eventually allowed to migrate back to the private sector once the GWOT calms down a bit, whilst continuing to sign/uphold the OSA of course. Seriously it'd do wonders for the UK digital economy for decades.

Greetings to Simon by the way! (I suppose there are a few Simon's employed there)

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Apple to stop European shipments of Mac Pro on March 1?

David Shaw
Happy

I bought the MacPro hexacore with 512SSD last year after my admin turned down my request for a MacMini server!! (but said I could buy a 'pro with 27"ACD??) It's a dream machine.... I have a 'faster' HP workstation with 30" HP wall of text but it feels slower, even though the HP chugs thru' cinibenchmarks faster.

The argument leading to the EOL of the current MP seems to be over big fans and no finger-guards. Shirley you'd have to open up the side-case for this finger-snapping problem to be evident? on my machine that would involve cracking the 4 digit luggage lock on the jobsian arty flip-out lock-thing...

in the UK if you're desperate to have a big lump of aluminium that can't actually receive Wi-Fi you could do worse than snap-up one of the last refurb MP's at the usual site FC560B/A/refurbished-mac-pro-28ghz-quad-core-intel-xeon where Apple would graciously bestow upon you a whole three gigs of ECC RAM for £1489...

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Europe's cybercrime fighters get new digs... complete with Faraday room

David Shaw
Coat

Re: Faraday room - great name

if the door has radio frequency finger stock (wiping/grounding copper beryllium fingers) on all 4 closed sides then the attenuation *might* start to be enough. Double 'grounded doors' would, as you say, be better. I presume they additionally use <a href="http://goo.gl/KZ5Sd">Ramsey</a> systems like these inside the room. (link is to ham radio shop that I used 10 years ago)

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The Lord of the Rings saga lies hidden deep in your Mac

David Shaw

Re: I remember a time

that's in the days of Bitnet and UUCP..... all the LAN boxes at CERN were Gandalf...there was a day in the 80's when IBM gave us a transatlantic 2 megabits data-link - we didn't know what to do with it, but Tim had an idea!

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