* Posts by defiler

993 posts • joined 18 Oct 2010

Every major OS maker misread Intel's docs. Now their kernels can be hijacked or crashed

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Re: So....

it should hardly ever come up, No?

Firstly, I am not a programmer. Secondly, it strikes me that you're correct in normal use.

However, somebody intent on causing trouble can pop this into a malicious program to cause havoc. It's like saying the bullet will be safe so long as it's kept in the box.

Can anyone offer a reason for using this segmented crap in any 32-bit system? If we're needing backwards compatibility for shitty old 16-bit applications, surely that can be isolated in an emulator or something these days?

Intel to preserve Moore's Law with startup land's fresh young blood

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Re: According to this presentation Lycean has already built one.

"Inverse Compton scattering."

So, if it's not scattered, does that mean it's Straight Outta Compton?

Admin needed server fast, skipped factory config … then bricked it

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Re: C'mon, Dr. S, this kind of trolling is beneath you.

Macs are tingley.

Same with the Surface Pro 3 I'm using just now. It's a figure-8 mains cable, so it doesn't have an earth.

A mate of mine had a Philips DVD player. Metal shell, but marked as "double-insulated". He kept getting shocks off that, and when tested it came out above 100V...

Sir Clive Sinclair dragged into ZX Spectrum reboot battle

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Re: Answer me this

And Blackjack! And hookers!

My PC is on fire! Can you back it up really, really fast?

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You ever wonder?

...whether in 10 years time some poor bugger is going to submit an anecdote to this feature about accidentally making a total arse of a bank system migration?

Reg man straps on Facebook's new VR goggles, feels sullied by the experience

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Re: Corporate tool?

but for example a Moto Z in a Daydream has significantly higher resolution

Then you're hammering against fill rates. I guess for a virtual desktop environment you don't care a whole lot about polygon counts, as the "screens" will effectively be two triangles with a high-res texture map applied. If the whole lot ends up looking like Job Simulator then so much the better - you can have people work without realising they should get paid for it. I'll not take my car to that workshop though... :)

You know, it's crazy but it might just work!

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Re: Corporate tool?

Then, instead of buying your techie or coder multiple screens and wondering where to put them, just buy them this VR set-up which models multiple windows floating in space (or whatever) around them

No-go at the mo...

The resolution on a Vive (for "decent-ish") is too low for detailed displays in a virtual environment, and until we get eye-tracking well-established, there's no way to crank up the resolution without adding the kind of rendering hardware that would make Crysis buttery-smooth.

Not to say it'll never happen, but it's way beyond the current generation of hardware. And the current generation of hardware is way beyond the old Virtuality kit from "days of yore".

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Re: Glasses

I'm going to guess because it's easier than fitting a plug into your spine like in The Matrix.

Let's be honest, if that (or the squishy things in Existenz) were on the table, a hell of a lot of us would be all over them.

For myself, I bought a Vive. It gets less use than I'd like, but DCS World is awesome in it. Just being able to look over your shoulder, or being able to peer down from the edge of the cockpit rather than having your POV swivel around a totally fixed point is absolutely great. Plug in the old Thrustmaster and you don't need to worry about hand tracking.

It really is very good for some things.

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If you get Gloveone/ Avatar VR and Leap Motion

And if I get wings grafted to my back I can fly to Cancun.

Let's keep our imaginary realities within the bounds of believability here, eh?

More Brits have access to 1Gbps speeds than those failing to muster 10Mbps – Ofcom report

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Even if I stay at work late ~ 11pm. And as I work at one of the top 10 universities in the UK, that should be a total f***ing embarrassment to the IT / network team.

Yeah. You'd think they'd be running backups and stuff offsite at that time of night. Bastards.

Also, we used to head into university to download Quake mods en mass, at 11pm. We'd hammer the Janet connection as hard as we could. Besides which, nowadays we put per-device caps on the line to stop people being stupid and greedy...

Who will fix our Internal Banking Mess? TSB hires IBM amid online banking woes

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Re: TSB hires IBM amid online banking woes...

who else were they gonna call?

Ghostbusters? Not sure they'd do any worse by this point.

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Re: Fight Club

The first rule of Project Mayhem is you don't ask questions.

The second rule of Project Mayhem is you don't ask questions.

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Re: not a customer

Customers should just be patient and not get agitated.

Day 1, I agree completely. Day 6, we're running headlong into the end of the month.

Missed direct debits is one thing (I'll have a few between now and Monday, and I'd be miffed if they failed), but the bank can generally explain the problem to the recipient, handle the penalties etc. But what if I (not banking with TSB) were unable to get paid by my employer (hypothetically banking with TSB), and I am the one stung with penalties? Will TSB reimburse me?

Yes, it's a complex task. It's a huge task. And it needs huge planning, and regular checkpoints with back-out plans already in place. It seems that somebody skimped on the planning, and they committed to a course of action that didn't have a back-out plan ready to go.

I'm not saying I'm perfect. I've committed to system changes without a fast back-out that ended up biting me before, but we had a workaround already on the back burner before it happened, and were able to keep users running on that for the couple of weeks it took the devs to sort the latency issues with us. But this is beyond amateur hour. It's a bank. Not a small bank. They claim to have over 5 million customers. That means that a small disruption is a big issue.

The tech you're reading these words on – you have two Dundee uni boffins to thank for that

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Re: Worrying...

Hahaha - flushed out the 4 Dundonians :D

Don't worry, chaps - I don't really have anything against Dundee. On the other hand, I did accidentally end up in East Kilbryde once at night. Had to think hard before stopping at red lights...

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Every time you use a smartphone, [...], you experience a little bit of Dundee.

You get the wheels nicked off your car? Thank god it wasn't invented in East Kilbryde...

PC recycler gets 15 months in the clink for whipping up 28,000 bootleg Windows 7, XP recovery discs

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Re: Heavy handed indeed

What is "Win-10-nic"?

I'm going to reach here, but I think it's a play on Titanic (Ti-10-nic / Win-10-nic). Yeah. I'ts pretty rubbish. The sort of thing you expect from somebody who bought a nuclear bunker to live in and only comes out to buy canned goods, to vote and to foam at the mouth.

Hmm. Hi, Bob!

Twenty years ago today: Windows 98 crashed live on stage with Bill Gates. Let's watch it again...

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Re: My first laptop ran WIn98

I never had that many problems with ME. I'm sure other people did, but the hate it got and still gets seems to be a bit over the top.

I put Windows ME on my home PC. Between the Diamond Monster MX300 sound card an a Gainward Geforce2 video card I never got the thing to stay up for more than 15 minutes.

The next day I put 98SE back on it and got back to enjoying it. Fuck Windows ME and everything it ever stood for. I think I saw it on 3 machines ever, and those three caused more headaches for me than Vista.

(Also put 2000 Workstation on my PC later and it was great until I finally went with XP x64.)

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Re: Bill Gates

Its no use hoarding your money if nobody else benefits from it - once you go past a billion it makes absolutely no difference

Or as Andrew Carnegie put it, "A man who dies rich dies in disgrace."

Sadly some people seem to think that looking at a big number is the thing that will satisfy them. I know some of these people.

Soyuz later! Russia may exit satellite launch biz

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Re: 2 billion in today's market

The Shuttle was an economical failure, but not a technical one

I'm going with this. It was a folly. A white elephant. I'll not argue against that, but what a tremendous achievement. NASA pushed the boundaries of what was actually possible, which was wonderful.

Did it work? Yes.

Did it work well? Yes.

Did it work as advertised? No - not really.

Did it achieve great things? Yes, look at the Hubble repair as the prime example.

Did it achieve its quick turnaround? Not a chance.

Did it achieve its reusability target? Not even close.

Was it the most insanely expensive way to put a payload in orbit? By far.

Was it flawed? In both design and execution.

Still, when I was a lad I made a model Space Shuttle. Didn't want an Atlas. And I would have had a Buran before a Soyuz. I wonder how many bright minds turned to aerospace just off the sight of something so ludicrously magnificent.

France building encrypted messaging app for politicians

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Plus ça change...

The haves setting different rules for the haves and the have-nots. The French have prior form on this sort of thing. I seem to recall it got a bit choppy.

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Re: |matrix| ?

That's hard to say, because unfortunately noone can tell you what the matrix is.

The law of run Nintendo consequences: Sega brings out mini Mega Drive / Genesis

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i've started buying all the originals right when everyone is going for the minis.

Snap. The lad like his retro games, so I just organised a SNES. Thought about the Mini, but it doesn't take carts so that's a bit of a waste. Looking forward to Play Expo now - he'll be coming along this year!

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Re: So exactly what they've been letting AtGames sell for years?

I suspect an official Sega version will have any sound problems that crop up in emulation ironed out.

Or they'll just ship a set of games that don't exhibit the problem, with no way of adding more...

Boeing CEO takes aim at Musk’s Starman-in-a-Tesla stunt

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Re: When the a leader slags off a competitor...

First they ignore us

Then they laugh at us*

Then they fight us

Then we win.

*I reckon on that performance, we're about here.

Donkey Wrong: Arcade legend Billy Mitchell booted from record books amid MAME row

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Re: All is right with the world.

this is the ending that documentary needed!

Quick! Crowdfund the Director's Cut!

To Indiegogo!!

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Re: Donkey Kong...

Wow - that's, like, totally Mexico!

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Re: Original Hardware?

where can you find an abundance of original 80s era arcade hardware that is still working?

Funland, apparently. That's where Twin Galaxies demanded that Steve Weibe set his score, but for some reason Billy Mitchell was allowed to chuck in a videotape.

Besides, if you're in the caibre where you're setting a world record, I expect you can find somebody to replace the caps on an old board. Not sure whether that would be acceptable, but Twin Galaxies should surely be able to have a trusted third party to deal with it. Just for when Funland's machine goes pop.

Moneybags VCs look to the stars – and spaff a billion on space tech

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Re: Lobbing into orbit

Where there's muck there's brass. Did your mum not teach you that?

White House: Is it OK to hijack, shoot down, or snoop on drones? Er ... asking for a friend

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Re: Why now?

Payload size and weight is also an issue.

African or European pigeon? :-/

UK 'wife'-carrying champion named

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Re: What I want to watch...

I find I carry too much (post-consumption) cheese at the best of times. Don't really want to carry more.

Cracker, Gromit?

Microsoft Office 365 and Azure Active Directory go TITSUP*

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Re: Why???

Because it tends to be cheaper and easier than running your own resilient email system, if you're only managing a handful of users. Sure, it goes off from time to time, but that passes and in a few days it's forgotten about.

It's like when you drink tea that's too hot and it burns a bit on the way down, but a few seconds later you're fine and keep drinking the tea once it's cooled a little. People are funny like that.

Substitute coffee / hot chocolate / hot beer / hot absinthe or whatever you like to drink hot in lieu of the tea...

We run our email in-house, over multiple servers, in multiple sites.

Are meta, self-referential or recursive science-fiction films doomed?

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Re: Films - meh

I thought the Dune film was OK when I saw it, given what it had to squeeze into a small amount of time (though I had the advantage of having previously read the books)

That's the thing, though. The movies acts as a great illustration to the book, but without having read the book it's very confusing. I remember it came on telly a day or two after I finished the book, and suddenly everything slotted into place. And you could see which bits had been shuffled around just to shift the narrative along quickly.

The SciFi Channel did a mini-series some time ago, but the cardboard they used for the sets was too wobbly even for Doctor Who. I seem to recall the acting was stiffer and more wooden than the sets.

Super Cali upstart's new rocket test approaches, even though the size of it won't launch a Tesla motor

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Awaiting an Easter miracle

LOHAN was Lester's baby. Apparently there's a group trying to piece it back together, but it's been very much on the back burner since he died.

Official word

Commonwealth Games brochure declares that England is now in Africa

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Re: A little breathing space

Can't we move Parliament somewhere further away? Bikini Atoll springs to mind.

Neptune. I mean it's not like Parliamentary TV needs to be real-time anyway.

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Well, if we're not in Europe any more...

Where's next-closest?

Furious gunwoman opens fire at YouTube HQ, three people shot

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Further, you can't presume the military in the USA would be 100% behind a tyrannical government, and if the majority of the people are against the government, the military would have reason to be party to a coup against the government in order "...to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness..." After all - the military needs money, and the citizens pay for it - and the military is essentially comprised of its citizens.

You buried it in the middle there, but this is the crux of my argument. You're not going to be as well-equipped as the military, and if it came down to some weirdly dystopian extermination of the civilian population then I have no doubt that the combined might of the US armed forces (both state and federal) could handle a 15:1 ratio with aplomb. Aside from everything else, you'd start with the low-hanging fruit and thin the numbers out before taking on the end-of-level boss.

But these military personnel are still people, and they still have families that they wouldn't take kindly to being asked to slaughter. They are the ones who would stop the lunacy. Armed forces of the people, for the people and by the people, if you will...

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Good luck throwing off that government that has become unjust and tyrannical when that government is the only ones with the guns...

I get that. I really do. But if you've imagined yourself into a situation where there is an armed uprising and the government are prepared to use force to put it down (ie pistols, rifles, shotguns) then you've also imagined yourself into a situation where the National Guard are employed in armed conflict against civilians.

They have shit like A10 Warhogs and Apaches. These things are designed to shrug off your small arms fire. They have F16s. They're really not mucking about. So what do you propose? Enshrine in law the right for every US citizen to bear guided surface-to-air missiles? RPGs to attack their armoured personnel carriers?

The simple truth is that the US armed forces (both federal and state) are tooled up so far beyond the civilian population that if they were to stamp down the citizenship then a bunch of gun-owning civvies is not going to be able to stop them. A military coup against the government that ordered the oppression is the thing that'd stop it. And I'd like to hope that's what would happen in that event.

As I say, I understand the sentiment behind the argument, but it only works when both sides have horses and rifles.

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@ShelLuser - Re: @Blank Reg

Yet that doesn't stop shooting incidents from happening. And decently frequent too. Only last Thursday did the country get shocked (yet again) because a store owner got killed during an intake meeting.

And that's it. The country is shocked. One gun death.

20 years ago I visited Houston, Texas - the Monday morning news just gave the weekend body count for gang shootings. There were dozens.

17 years ago I visited Los Angeles, CA - again, just a body count for gang violence.

Sure, these are gang-shooting hotspots, but you get the idea. One shooting now and then vs dozens every week. That's a mass shooting every week that everyone just seems to ignore.

(I don't know how things have changed since then. I've been to the USA twice since - first time I was mostly drunk, and second time I was at a wedding so mostly drunk. Ignored the news - watched the Dukes of Hazzard instead.)

EUROCONTROL outage causes flight delays across Europe

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Re: 5 Hours to switch over to Disaster Recovery System

I'll confess I had to read it twice before I groaned. First time it flew right over my head... :-/

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Re: 5 Hours to switch over to Disaster Recovery System

Bear in mind that they didn't shut down the airspace. Maybe they were in disaster mode within minutes, and it just took a few hours to sort out the problem and return to primary.

I'd suggest that having a standby system capable of handling 90% of the load is pretty good. You don't expect to lean on it very often, and it'll be a damn sight cheaper than one specced for 100%. I know - ideal world and all that. But realistically that's not bad.

User fired IT support company for a 'typo' that was actually a real word

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Re: "Mangers feature prominently in the Christmas story"

Strange. When did this turn into a UK vs. USA conversation?

Jake, you've been around here long enough to know that the answer is "every Friday" and "every Thursday before a holiday Friday".

Also, most Mondays and some Tuesdays. Wednesdays you're probably safe. Saturday/Sunday you've probably got something better to do. :)

Manchester Arena attack: National Mutual Aid Telephony system failed

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Re: Outsourcing

If they are that much cheaper then someone somewhere is cutting corners.

Not necessarily. If the bar to entry is high enough, and the task small enough then outsourcing makes great sense. As described above - worldwide delivery. Not feasible to be done by every company individually.

A contentious example around these parts - cloud computing. If I need a small server to do my own stuff, and it needs to be permanently available on a fast internet line, it's generally better / cheaper for me to grab a VPS from (say) Rackspace than to buy a 1U Proliant (with hot-swap RAID, redundant PSUs etc) and colo it in an ISP datacentre. And even moreso over getting a RIPE allocation, multiple lines into my premises with BGP coming out of my ears, generator out back, and a second server handy in case the first one falls over...

For a telco, this system should be easy to set up. It should be well within their normal excess capacity, so it makes sense for a telco to handle it on behalf of the government rather than the government spending my tax money trying to *be* a telco. Why a telco then subbed it, though, is beyond me.

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Content Guru...

We looked at getting a VoIP service that was underpinned by them. Their software was utter shite at the time, and given everyone's reluctance to accept that there was an issue with it I don't expect it'll have improved...

I really wouldn't have wanted them in charge of an emergency system.

10Mbps for world+dog, hoots UK.gov, and here is how we're doing it

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One can only hope...

...that the infrastructure work for these remote locations is done in a forward-looking manner. In other words, bung some fibre in there. Given that I expect they'll be digging a trench anyway, adding fibre to it is a minimal cost, and adding a lot of fibre is a rounding error beyond that.

That way, when UK Gov turns around and ups it to 50Mb/sec in the future it's a case of changing terminating equipment (or even just unthrottling the lines).

(Happy to be about 300m from the exchange.)

User asked why CTRL-ALT-DEL restarted PC instead of opening apps

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Re: Feeling Old...

> ...we attached a CD ROM to one of the (3?) interface options. Panasonic, Soundblaster and.....? Not IDE but can't recall the third one. Any one remember?


ATAPI?? Pfft. Mitsumi, I believe is the word we're looking for. It was Panasonic / Sony / Mitsumi.

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Re: Feeling Old...

I'm getting the impression that the whole development of personal computing was driven by the desire to play games?

Hah - I know one guy whose first word of English was SoundBlaster. Further words came out of the copy-protection schemes that required the game manual...

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Re: Feeling Old...

I seem to recall reading how Doom had crashed WAN links back in the day, as every bullet from the minigun was a data packet

Indeed it did, but not simply because of that. Because every packet was a broadcast. In DooM 1.0 you could have 3 computers on a network act as left / front / right views, so everything was broadcast.

I think that was taken out in DooM 1.2, but not before it had tanked the fibre line between George Square and Kings Buildings at Edinburgh University.

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Typo? We have it all the time

User phones up.

"The system's not working"

Remote into their terminal. Watch them put in the wrong password 3 times. Advise to restart their terminal.


2 mins later - "It's fine now - I guess it's fixed itself", only with the undertone that we've been spending our spare time just breaking shit for laughs, and we shouldn't be mucking about with it...

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Re: Feeling Old...

Remember wrangling with the order things loaded in autoexec.bat and config.sys too, just to be able to get a game or program to run properly.

Worst one I saw was DOS 5 + Falcon 3 + Gravis Ultrasound. Kids these days will never understand the trauma of trying to get 600k of base memory.

(The Gravis was a really nice card. A friend had it. I saw the pain he had to go through and bought a Soundblaster instead.)

We sent a vulture to find the relaunched Atari box – and all he got was this lousy baseball cap

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The real reason for the delay...

The production lines were snapped up for the Vega+. Atari will just have to wait until that production run is complete.

Too soon? :-/

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