* Posts by pip25

144 posts • joined 17 Jun 2010

Page:

Disk will eat itself: Flash price crash just around the over-supplied block

pip25
Meh

"They would then only be 4X more expensive per GB than disk drives"

In other words, still way too expensive for me to buy. I'm sure this is a huge drop from previous prices, but only when it gets to the 2X range will I start considering SSDs as a alternative that could completely replace my current drives.

You wanna be an alpha... tester of The Register's redesign? Step this way

pip25

Not much of a difference

Assuming the huge white bar at the top with a single button ("Back to classic homepage") is not supposed to be there in the long term. The articles do look a bit more jumbled together, the old version felt somewhat more orderly than this.

As some others mentioned above, if you were redesigning things anyway, wasting a bit less space on a widescreen monitor would have been nice.

Microsoft pulls the plug on Windows 7, 8.1 support forums

pip25
Meh

Not sure how big of a loss this is

It's been a while since I found a thread on these forums that contained meaningful information from a Microsoft employee regarding an issue I've been trying to solve... Actually, it's been such a long time, I don't even remember it happening. Ever.

Mozilla sends more snooping Web APIs to smartphone Siberia

pip25

Re: The trend is more worrying than the security risks themselves

@Dan 55:

My impression is that you are confusing privacy with security and safety. Perhaps there are some rules in the iOS/Android app store that state otherwise, but when I accept a permission for an app (SD card access, for instance), I do that with the understanding that the app can do whatever it pleases with that permission. It could potentially format my drive. Because of this, I only install apps I trust to an extent (widely used, the developer seems like a real person with contact info, etc.) and the matter of which permission to grant only comes after this decision.

Websites are (or should be) similar. I try to identify dodgy websites before I even open them based on the search engine result. Whether I trust them with my sensor data is a question that would only come after I deem them safe enough to visit. (Other safeguards such as NoScript also help a lot with this, of course.)

@Charles 9:

Yet if and adult guts himself with a knife because he does not realize that it is sharp, no one calls for the banning of knives, because knowing knives are sharp is considered something every responsible person should know about. Similarly, one is expected not to cross a street during a red light, etc.

I feel the definition of what is considered common knowledge should be changed accordingly to the dangers of the present era, which do include identity/data theft. Of course, that is far from being the case right now. :(

pip25

Re: the user is king

Define blanket permissions. What I had in mind was something like a list of the permission items the site wants (microphone, camera and proximity, for instance), all of which can be accepted or denied individually, if need be. Most certainly not a generic "do you allow this site to slurp your data" prompt.

pip25

Re: the user is king

Then perhaps we should adjust the way these permission requests are made. For instance, the site could declare in advance, in a HTTP header, which privacy-sensitive features it wants to use, and then the user has to accept one single prompt, which has the option to "remember choice for this site".

And of course the users need to realize that such choices do matter; there is no such thing as idiot-proof privacy. But I guess that's a whole different can of worms.

pip25
Unhappy

The trend is more worrying than the security risks themselves

Perhaps not for the most common use cases imaginable, but these were valid API features. Removing them is basically admitting that the browser vendor has no idea how to offer these features in a way that allows safe usage and/or user consent. So what are we going to remove next? There's a ton of ways you can fingerprint a device or spy on people's habits.

Is privacy on mobile really such a lost cause? A permission-based system seems to work well for Android native apps, can't we do something similar for websites? After all, the boundary between sites and apps is getting more blurred by the minute anyway...

Mobile World Congress: 5 buzzwords, an homage to Windows XP and a smartphone snorefest

pip25
Go

I for one am glad some still bother with keyboards

Used a Samsung Galaxy phone for years, and could never get used to typing on the screen. Blackberry KeyOne came out, I pounced on it, and I'm loving every minute of it. If it weren't practically new, I'd check this Gemini phone out as well... heck I might take a look anyway.

Boring. The phone business has lost the plot and Google is making it worse

pip25
Meh

This has been the case since years

Perhaps the main difference is that manufacturers are finally realizing that stock Android is good enough that customizing it will not help as much as it will slow down updates. So now the phones are all the same both inside and out. Yaaay.

I can only hope that with the urge to introduce software bloat no longer as prevalent, they'll try taking bigger risks in the hardware department again. And no, I am NOT talking about removing even more features just to make the phone 1 mm thinner. Perhaps it could be foldable screens, or a new form factor entirely, anything really... Let's just say I'm more than ready to finally see something new and noteworthy.

The e-waste warrior, 28,000 copied Windows restore discs, and a fight to stay out of jail

pip25
Unhappy

Oh, come on

If the PCs in question did have valid licenses, what the heck are we even talking about? Who lost money because of what Eric Lundgren did? Well, mostly he himself, since blank disks are still not free.

What happened to common sense in courts...?

Look on the bright side, Pebble fans. At least your gizmo will work long enough for you to get beach body ready

pip25
Thumb Up

Agreed, after my Pebble Time's battery got to the point that it barely lasted a day, I caved and bought a Garmin Vivoactive HR. Same kind of always-on screen but it's also touch-capable, customizable watchfaces, app store (which could use a bit more apps though), great battery life, notifications, and a lot of fitness stuff if anyone's interested in that. This one also has a rectangular screen, which I feel makes more sense for a smartwatch (but round models are also available).

My single gripe is that call notifications can be very slow (4-5 seconds after my phone started ringing), while for the Pebble Time they were nearly instantaneous, but I hope they'll fix that in a software update sooner or later.

SpaceX 'raises' an extra 100 million bucks to get His Muskiness to Mars

pip25
Thumb Down

Re: Andrew Silver, this is article is low effort trolling.

Also, "SpaceX rockets have an unfortunate tendency to crash and burn"? Seriously...? It's perfectly fine if someone at El Reg is skeptical about SpaceX, but please stick to the facts at least.

Firefox 57: Good news? It's nippy. Bad news? It'll also trash your add-ons

pip25
Flame

Supporting legacy addons is not the real problem here

The actual problem is that the new WebExtensions API can only do a fraction of the things the old API did. Simply put, some old extensions cannot be rewritten, because the new API simply won't let you modify the browser to the same extent. Mozilla did put in some effort to include additional APIs, but at the end of the day, most of these issues were met with a simple shrug.

Considering its addons were pretty much the only edge Firefox had left compared to Chrome, that's the real tragedy right there.

For me, after years of putting up with one idiotic design decision after another, this was the last straw. I am now using Pale Moon, where 90% of my addons work, and will continue to work for the foreseeable future. They might even add WebExtensions in later on. Goodbye and good riddance, Firefox.

German Firefox users to test recommendation engine 'a bit like thought-reading'

pip25
Unhappy

Makes me glad I switched to Pale Moon already

After the insanity around XUL addons and WebExtensions I didn't think this can get much worse, but Mozilla managed to surprise me once more. Really, I can't decide whether I'm furious or just plain sad. Probably both.

Horsemen of the disk-drive apocalypse will ride upon 256TB SSDs

pip25
Thumb Down

"Just" a 2.2x price premium by 2021?

Don't know about you, but as a humble desktop user current multi-TB HDD prices aren't on the cheap end for my tastes. So why would I buy an SSD with similar capacity that costs over twice as much? (Supposedly, 4 years from now, if everything goes according to plan.) I can see the advantages in data centers, but most of those are not worth twice the price for your average Joe, especially if you can use a much smaller SSD as a cache or system drive and get comparable performance.

Anyone for Virtual Monkey Tennis? Telco tries to sell us on 5G

pip25
FAIL

My thoughts exactly

The carriers are so busy touting the speeds of their network that they somehow seem to forget about the fact that in many countries data caps are still insane, with little to no improvement in the past decade or so.

In Hungary for instance, you can't watch videos or use Skype on a mobile connection, period. Not because you don't have the bandwidth, but because you'll burn through your expensive 1-2 GBs of data so fast that you can barely blink.

And to think that they're talking about 4K video... sheesh...

Who killed Pebble? Easy: The vulture capitalists

pip25
Unhappy

VCs will not get all that much money (or anyone else for that matter)

As far as I know, most of that 40 million will be spent on covering Pebble's debts, which the company acquired to stay afloat in the recent past. As a Pebble Time user myself, I'm greatly saddened by recent events, but I don't think the investors are to blame here, as convenient a target they may be.

Exclusive: Team Trump's net neutrality guru talks to El Reg

pip25
WTF?

...What?

"Hard neutrality strengthens the incumbent. It makes it very difficult for a startup to compete with Netflix and Google(...)"

Did she really just say that? Pardon my ignorance, but isn't net neutrality supposed to encourage startups competing with, let's say, Netflix, by forbidding "pay for bandwidth" deals which would basically shut them out of the net without proper bandwidth?

Google scraps its Project Ara modular smartphone wheeze

pip25
Unhappy

What a shame

Since I have little faith in Android manufacturers releasing phones I'd actually love to use. It's always "let's choose the one which lacks less features I want compared to the competition".

I guess my preferences (removable battery, SD card, God forbid a keyboard) have become outdated by industry standards... :(

App-V birthday to you, Win10: Virty tools baked in Anniversary update

pip25
FAIL

Congratulations Microsoft

For putting even more useful functionality behind a paywall that most users can't climb EVEN if they actually want to pay you. Brilliant, just brilliant.

My devil-possessed smartphone tried to emasculate me

pip25
Happy

I use a waist bag

Having my phone in my trouser pocket was always uncomfortable, even back then when they weren't this big. I bought myself a waist bag around 10 years ago, and haven't looked back. Unlike a handbag, the small pockets let me retrieve everything (phone, wallet, pencil, whatnot) at a moment's notice. Doesn't work with formal wear though, I have to use these shoulder holster-like things instead which can store a lot less.

Mozilla looses Firefox 43, including Windows 64-bit variant

pip25
FAIL

Article missed the most important change

Signing addons is now compulsory, non-signed addons are disabled upon upgrade, which causes the issues other commenters experienced. You can override this with an "about:config" flag, but they want to remove that flag in the next release, making addons no longer supported by their developers completely unusable. Let's just say I'm less than thrilled about this. :/

Er, uh ... sorry! Project Ara will not launch this year after all

pip25
Stop

Re: I can't see an use for this

I don't care if it's bulky. Manufacturers are so obsessed with getting their devices even 1 mm thinner these days that they're willing to sacrifice actual useful features to do so. I will gladly buy a phone that's twice as thick as the competition if it'll stay upgradeable thanks to the modular architecture and will contain the features I want, nothing less or more.

KERR-PAO! Reddit interim CEO Ellen quits amid Redditor revolt

pip25
Facepalm

"The good has been off-the-wall inspiring, and the ugly made me doubt humanity."

Welcome to the Internet.

If the above came as such a great revelation to you, then you likely weren't qualified to be the CEO of a large site to begin with I'm afraid.

What a time to be alive ... hard and floppy disk drives play Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit

pip25
Go

My personal favorite:

"What is love?" on eight floppy drives:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xk_XaJ7gE4Q

This one is actually pretty enjoyable, addictive even. :)

Google's first stab at control-free ROBOT car rolls off the line

pip25
Meh

This goes a tiny bit too far

A car that can drive itself should the situation call for it (because I fall asleep) or because I let it - that's great. Awesome even.

However, a car that includes manual controls only for emergencies, if at all, is not for me. I want to be able to override the car's decisions - one of the reasons why is that I don't trust the software that much, at least not yet. Considering how new the technology itself is, I'm not sure why Google does either. One step at a time, for goodness' sake.

Google vows: Earth will vanish in 2015

pip25
Thumb Down

Rather evil, if you ask me

Phase out an API but offer no replacement whatsoever. It's not one of the more obscure Google APIs either. This does not make one especially confident that using Google's online services in company or personal projects is a safe option in the long run.

Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode

pip25
Unhappy

Re: Erm non story

It has been confirmed that the game servers handle all financial transactions - meaning every time you buy or sell something, it will need to connect to the server. That's light years away from "occasionally", in fact, that's pretty much an "always online" game. It also means that when the servers go offline, the game dies too. :/

Windows 10's 'built-in keylogger'? Ha ha, says Microsoft – no, it just monitors your typing

pip25

Re: Microsoft simply cannot afford this to happen

Please imagine this on a smaller scale for a moment: you give out a pre-release version of an accounting software you wrote for a client to get some test data in more real-life scenarios. On the next meeting you casually mention to them that their login problems are probably related to the fact that they tend to press TAB too many times and thus jump over the "Login" button to the "Cancel" button. "How do you know that?" they ask. "Well, this test version logs all key presses," you reply, "We mentioned it in the release notes, too. You know, in section 53."

Will your client appreciate your (totally valid and useful) testing feature? Illogical or not, most won't. It goes over a certain line. If you want real-life test data, then you are expecting your users to do the same things with your software that they do in production environments, at least to an extent. That does not mesh well with key loggers of any kind, because at the very least it creeps people out. And that's not good for the image of your company or your software, as simple as that.

pip25
FAIL

Microsoft simply cannot afford this to happen

It doesn't really matter if it's in the EULA or if the supposed keylogger collects everything or just bits of information; this is not the way you get people excited about your new operating system version. It's a PR disaster. The reputation of the company and the Windows brand itself (both which wasn't very stellar to begin with) took such a hit in the last few years that this really is the last thing they should be doing.

Patch Bash NOW: 'Shellshock' bug blasts OS X, Linux systems wide open

pip25
Facepalm

Wanted to see if my router is affected

Only to find out that it has a hardwired debug shell URL with a hardwired username/password. With root privileges. Well, at least it apparently does use busybox instead of bash... *facepalm*

4K-ing excellent TV is on its way ... in its own sweet time, natch

pip25
Meh

I can feel the difference...

...in my wallet. And for now I think I'll stick with the reassuring experience of having significantly more money in it instead of "feeling" something coming from a TV screen which I only seldom use to begin with.

No more turning over a USB thing, then turning it over again to plug it in: Reversible socket ready for lift off

pip25
Thumb Down

I don't need another damn connector type

USB connectors already come in so many shapes and sizes, why the heck do we need yet another variant? Type A plugs will still remain the default especially on desktops, if for no other reason then because of compatibility. I don't even really see the ones who can make big money out of this (the converter manufacturers, maybe?), so I simply cannot fathom why this idiotic move was necessary.

Microsoft throws old versions of Internet Explorer under the bus

pip25
Meh

I cannot upgrade

IE10 requires a "platform update" (KB2670838) to be installed on Windows 7 that completely breaks Aero on my desktop, so I'm stuck with IE9. Well, at least I don't use it much...

Another day, another Firefox: Version 31 is upon us ALREADY

pip25
Meh

I'm a web developer

And I'd prefer if they fixed some bugs instead. I'm at the end of a project right now, and do you know which browser I had the most problems with during development? No, not IE... Firefox! (I guess IE's issues are quite well known already and most frameworks take them into account.) Firefox keeps crashing like there's no tomorrow, has some absurd kind of memory leak which makes large images impossible to load after some time, and so on and so forth... I use Firefox as my default browser and I knew it had problems, but this experience was really disheartening. :(

Chrome browser has been DRAINING PC batteries for YEARS

pip25
Unhappy

Re: Sometimes, nobody inside cares what *you* think

I feel this is a more general issue and seems to be part of a trend I noticed with projects which are supposedly open to contributions.

These projects have several types of users in terms of the available time they commit to it, but inevitably, there will be at least a few "fanatics" who do not mind the project taking up a huge amount of their time, quickly become leaders and organizers, and are responsible for much of the project's momentum.

Unfortunately, it seems like they are also the very same people who will be responsible for the project's eventual downfall. Why? Simply because, after all the time and work they've put into it, they now feel that the project (or at least a good chunk of it) belongs to them. This is in fact a completely understandable emotion given the circumstances, but also very destructive, since instead of trying to inspect a proposal based on its own merits, they will became increasingly prone to dismissing something which doesn't harmonize with their current "vision" of the project out of hand. This not only discourages other, less "fanatic" contributors, but can also lead to the degradation of the project's overall quality, since, let's face it, even these very smart and talented people can be wrong, but with their status and mindset they can become largely immune to critique.

I've seen this attitude in so many places that it's kind of scary. Firefox and Chrome are an example, but then there's the whole recent Gnome debacle, too. And it's not just about software projects: I feel Wikipedia suffers from the very same problem, with its editors becoming increasingly elitist and seeing new people as more of a hindrance than an asset. Heck, I'm an admin of a smaller wiki too and I've seen the very same effect on myself.

Without wanting to sound overly dramatic, unless we find some kind of solution to this problem, this can eventually have a devastating effect on the open-source community as a whole. :(

Russians turn Raspberry Pi into fully-fledged autopilot

pip25
Thumb Up

@James 47

The restrictions only seem to apply to GPS units coming from the US. The project is Russian, and they're using units made by the Swiss company "U-blox", so I don't think this is going to be an issue.

TrueCrypt considered HARMFUL – downloads, website meddled to warn: 'It's not secure'

pip25
Facepalm

This is ridiculous

TrueCrypt had a quite functional, if not very eye-catching website, which has been replaced by a primitive HTML page that you can throw together in two minutes. The source code for "7.2" is peppered with inane "INSECURE_APP" messages. The binary was signed with a different key. Can anyone seriously believe that this is the work of the original developers?

Whatever the motivation, this looks like a rather obvious security breach regarding the project's SourceForge account. No more and no less.

(I mean... switch to Bitlocker? That's not even a good troll.)

Google clamps down on rogue Chrome plugins and extensions

pip25
Thumb Down

I guess Chrome got popular enough

Time for Google to start (ab)using its market share. I don't usually have Google-phobia but this move reminds me too much of what Microsoft used to do with IE.

EBay, you keep using the word 'SECURITY'. I do not think it means what you think it means

pip25
Flame

I'm beyond fed up with this

A major site hack or vulnerability or whatever comes out every other week, prompting me to change my password(s). The new one(s) should (once again) be unique to the site, not tied to any personal data, etc., etc...

Go to hell. Seriously, just go to hell; I'm not a goddamn hash table that can store an infinite number of passwords for an infinite number of sites and change any or all of them at a moment's notice. My memory is rather limited in this aspect.

Use a password manager, you say? I access these sites from a variety of devices and don't want my passwords to be present (encrypted or not) on all of them. Instead, I use SuperGenPass, but since that uses my master password and the site name to generate the actual pass, I can't change the site password without changing my master password, and thus we're back to square one.

I'm just so sick and tired of the whole thing by now, goddammit...

How the W3C met its Waterloo at the Do Not Track vote showdown

pip25

Re: Just a little point.

Unfortunately many people fail to see a very simple point: ad networks will never support any kind of agreement that prevents them from tracking/exploiting/monetizing the majority of the Internet users, at least unless state legislations (those of the US and the EU in particular) force them to do otherwise, and that's unlikely to happen in the near future. Thus, DNT being "on" by default in any major browser doomed the standard immediately.

It's always been about the inexperienced, the uninformed or the plain ignorant. Why do you think, when submitting a registration to a forum or site, the checkbox that allows people to spam you with their useless newsletter is always, ALWAYS checked by default? Most people currently either don't know or don't care about tracking, and this is the major reason why you even have the possibility to opt-out from services such as Google Now at all.

We are allowed to make a choice because most users do not bother. No, that's not a good thing at all, but a lot more fundamental change would be needed in the financial model of Internet companies today to allow things to be done differently. A simple request header will not do much.

Do Not Track W3C murder plot fails by handful of votes

pip25
Unhappy

DNT is already dead, sadly

Since IE has it on by default, no ad provider can or will take it seriously. Well done Microsoft, something tells me this was your intention from the start. :(

Mozilla CTO blasts WC3 plans to bless anti-piracy DRM tech in HTML5

pip25
WTF?

DRM plugins?

What happened to the brave new plugin-less HTML5 world? Does this mean that Apple and Microsoft will do a 180 degrees turn on their current mobile/TIFKAM browser policies? And let's not get started on the potential problems caused by the numerous platforms one can use to access web content today... Will DRM plugins be ported to all platforms? Android? iOS? Linux...? I highly doubt it.

Either I'm fundamentally misunderstanding something here, or this DRM proposal goes against each and every trend on the web today, a fact that becomes even more baffling when one looks at the companies pushing for it.

Microsoft relents: 'Go ahead, install Windows 8.1 on clean PCs'

pip25
FAIL

Insane

I simply cannot fathom why they enforce this ridiculous restriction. A full upgrade from Windows 7 to Windows 8.1 should be no more difficult than an upgrade from Window 7 to Windows 8. The system did not change all that much.

I guess I'll be able to get around it the same way I upgraded my XP machine to Win7 (by first upgrading to Vista as an intermediate step), but knowing this I'm even less eager to do so than before.

Germany warns: You just CAN'T TRUST some Windows 8 PCs

pip25
FAIL

It gets even better:

Apparently, MS is forcing manufacturers to include TPM 2.0 into their products if they want to be "Windows 8.1 certified", starting from 2015. Good luck finding a new PC without a working TPM afterwards.

I usually regard myself as a conservative IT guy who still likes doing most things on a good old PC, but if this really is the future of X86/X64, I will seriously consider switching to some different architecture when my current machine breaks down. Damn the inconveniences.

Lenovo to ship all new PCs with Start Menu replacement

pip25
Facepalm

Pokki...? Seriously?

How about Start8? Stardock would jump at the opportunity and license it to Lenovo for a fraction of the cost. Or if you don't want to pay a penny, who not Classic Shell? Why does even a sensible move like this end up as just another piece of crapware to uninstall? Why, why, WHY?

The man from Del Monte, he says... NO! .delmonte gTLD bid crushed, juiced

pip25
Unhappy

Is this still going on?

I thought/hoped they might have finally given up on the whole gTLD thing after one blunder too many...

Barbie paints Red Planet pink with NASA-approved Mars Explorer doll

pip25
Joke

Such old-fashioned thinking

No gloves? That's what force fields are for, my good friend. You have to think big! Mars Explorer Barbie will be for women's spacewear what Minority Report was for user interaction! We are given a glimpse to a most glorious future! (And that future is pink!)

How sad it is to see El Reg stuck behind the times to such an extent.

Microsoft video preview shows Windows 8.1 tablet UI options

pip25
Thumb Up

Desktop wallpaper on Start Screen ->

50% less jarring transition back and forth. Who would have thought? </sarcasm>

It still feels like something of a second desktop, but it's a definite if small improvement. Maybe for Windows 8.321 they will actually be able to integrate the two together, which will probably the time when I will consider upgrading.

More than half of Windows 8 users just treat it like Windows 7

pip25
Alert

Abysmal

I figured Metro wasn't doing very well, but these figures are still no less than shocking. If this isn't a proper wake-up call for Microsoft, then nothing is.

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