* Posts by DougS

12863 posts • joined 12 Feb 2011

Apple nabs smartphone top spot from Samsung, but for how long?

DougS Silver badge

Obviously Apple had the lion's share of profit

All their phones are high end, whereas Samsung also sells low and mid priced phones. I haven't seen figures for smartphone profits for a few years, last time it was something like Apple making 90%, Samsung making 20%, and everyone else collectively losing money.

Inside Confide, the chat app 'secretly used by Trump aides': OpenPGP, OpenSSL, and more

DougS Silver badge

If it is being used, everyone using it is violating the law

The presidential records act was amended in 2014 to include instant messages among the protected classes of documents that must be preserved. I hope all republicans wanting to put Hillary in jail for using a private email server will feel the same about administration officials using an instant message app with the defining feature that it leaves no paper trail.

But somehow I bet they'll believe it if Pence says he's been assured that no classified information or official business is being conducted using Confide....I'm sure they're only using it to decide where to order lunch :P

No crypto backdoors, more immigration ... says Republican head of House Committee on Homeland Security

DougS Silver badge

Re: These aren't the Republicans you're looking for

Not only are republicans the party of Lincoln (who WON the civil war and didn't inherit the racists from the southern democrats until LBJ signed the civil rights act in 1964) but trying to apply something that happened literally a century and a half ago to today's politicians is ludicrous - politicians have and have always had a time horizon that never stretches further than the next election.

The issue of backdoored encryption seems to cross party boundaries, there are democrats on each side and republicans on each side. More republicans on the pro backdoor side than democrats, but only because they are the traditional "law and order" party that tends to defer to the wishes of law enforcement. The real battle is convincing law enforcement that the idea is stupid, once they accept that, even an executive order happy orange president won't be able to enact such a terrible idea.

Standards Australia might send Tesla's PowerWalls outside

DougS Silver badge

Is that really any safer?

If your house is made of wood, hanging the 10 kwh lithium battery on the outside wall isn't going to prevent it from burning down if Samsung SDI made the batteries.

Magic Leap sued for sex discrimination … by woman it hired to stamp out sex discrimination

DougS Silver badge

Re: There are two types of Start-up founders

Or to put it yet another way, being type #2 isn't the guarantee of failure it normally is if you are ALSO type #1.

XPoint: Leaked Intel specs reveal 'launch-ready' SSD – report

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Re: Honest question...

4228 byte sectors = 8x sectors of 528 bytes. Standard fare for enterprise drives, to provide an extra layer of error correction.

Apple joins one wireless power group, the other one responds with so-happy forced grin

DougS Silver badge

Re: But what have apple ever done for us ?

Dunno about the "reversed PCI slot", guess I never heard of that one, but are you trying to claim BSD is a 'standard'? You must be joking. Apple just used it as a layer in their software, just like many companies use Linux in theirs. If you want to look for a modern example of embrace and extend, look at Google's use of Java in Android.

DougS Silver badge

Re: But what have apple ever done for us ?

When has Apple ever "embraced and extended" standards? They either follow standards, or go their own way with an Apple only "standard". They don't play 90s Microsoft with them.

Infosec pros aren't too bothered by Trump – it's his cabinet sidekicks you need to worry about

DougS Silver badge

Re: "Would that depend on whether the wage growth exceeds inflation of cost of living "

I don't think a lot of Trump voters really truly believed he had a solution for getting jobs back like they used to have. I think they liked him because they hadn't heard anyone speak to their problems for a long time. The republican party hasn't cared about working class economic issues for ages, except to pay lip service with "trickle down", and the democrats stopped caring about them after getting creamed repeatedly in the 80s and decided being too liberal was the cause and went to a good ol boy southern democrat named Bill.

I don't think his voters expect Trump to do anything about it so much as they KNEW Hillary wouldn't - her early position in favor of TPP gave Trump these voters on a silver platter. They figured even if Trump didn't actually make their lives better he'd shake things up and piss off the establishment. I think Trump might actually be permanently reversing the republican party direction on free trade - it will be pretty hard for a republican to run as a free trader for fear of Trump giving him the Twitter treatment and handing victory to his primary opponent.

Until Bill Clinton came along and promoted and signed NAFTA over the objections of many traditional democrats, they were the party of trade protectionism, and the republicans were free trade. In not much moer than a generation, they look to switch sides with each other. Almost like when the southern racists that had been with the democrats for a century abandoned them en masse for the republicans after LBJ signed the civil rights act.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Right here is how Trump wins or looses the next election.

The results of the economy will be almost immaterial to Trump in the 2020 election. If things go south, he's going to blame Obama, blame democrats, blame judges, blame members of his own party, blame business leaders, blame immigrants, blame ISIS, blame China, blame Mexico, blame Rosie O'Donnell. Everyone except himself.

The jobs are never coming back. If tariffs force manufacturing to move back into to the US, the new factories will be highly automated, and create few jobs - none of which will be for the displaced rust belt workers who were his most ardent supporters.

Look at the stats, the US is still the second ranked manufacturer in the world, and our manufacturing output is TWICE what it was 30 years ago in constant dollars. But despite that, manufacturing employment peaked in 1979, almost 40 years ago. Fewer workers make more stuff. Trump needs to make robots illegal as part of his Turn Back the Clock on America Make America Great Again plan if he wants to create jobs for those guys.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Elections - but no free speech

Why would Cruz vs Bernie be worse? Cruz may be hated even by most of his own party's establishment, and if you aren't a hardcore conservative you may think his views are terrible, but at least you can't provoke him with a tweet, and he wouldn't think that hiring people off a website for nutjobs to advise him on running on the country is a good idea. You might feel Bernie is worse than Clinton if you don't like hardcore liberals who want to raise taxes to give the money away for free college and rainbows, but with him you wouldn't have to worry about potential investigations and accusations following him around throughout his term, and no one would ever accuse him of being in the pocket of Wall Street or big business.

I think either one would have made a better president than Trump will, or Hillary would have. Too bad we didn't have that choice, and instead of the two party system we had four:

Angry white man party: Trump

Conservatives who claim to have Christian values but don't know what Jesus taught party: Cruz

New world order party: Clinton

1960s hippie dream party: Sanders

DougS Silver badge

Re: 'Wasted' third party votes

Just to add - the reason why that attitude is responsible for terrible choices is that so long as the democrats and republicans feel the choice is only between them, they can run awful candidates and just assume their followers will swallow mouthfuls of shit and not complain because they'll be told and believe that the other side's candidate is even worse.

If a third party candidate was considered a viable alternative, the republicans couldn't run a Manchurian candidate like Trump, and the democrats couldn't run Hillary with her baggage and investigations, because their supporters would have other options. But so long as weak minded fools believe the "a vote for third party is a vote for the EVIL other side" propaganda, you'll see party machine crap like the democrats swinging the primary to Clinton because she "deserved it", not that interloper Sanders, and the republican party only backing away from similarly stealing it from Trump because the alternative was Cruz, who is probably second only to Clinton herself in being hated by the republican party establishment.

DougS Silver badge

'Wasted' third party votes

I remember seeing exactly the same thing from people unhappy about Obama winning, blaming anyone who voted third party instead of "correctly" for McCain or Romney for Obama being president. And Bush before him.

It is idiots like these people, who always claim "THIS election is the most important in generation", who are responsible for terrible terrible terrible choices such as that between Trump and Clinton. Fuck you guys, I'm going to continue voting third party, not feeling bad about it, and not giving a shit if you think the "wrong" candidate won. In my mind, the wrong candidate won whether it was Trump or Clinton.

Roses are red, violets are blue, fake-news-detecting AI is fake news, too

DougS Silver badge

Even if you had a perfect AI, where's the source for "facts"?

If you ask Trump and many of his followers, if it is from any "mainstream" media, it is biased and therefore can't be trusted. Recently I've noticed some of my more conservative friends lumping Fox News into that category. I guess Breitbart is the only "unbiased" source in their mind. If a known purveyor of fake news is seen as the only legitimate outlet for real news, there's not really much chance of a fake news detection bot becoming generally accepted as an arbiter of fake news. Especially when an orange tinpot dictator need only speak out against it and tens of millions of his followers will accept that statement as gospel.

I think maybe you have to simply write off the people on the extremes. The ones who will only trust a source if it agrees with their preconceived biases will never accept an impartial arbiter, even if (especially if) if disagrees with those preconceived biases. It is like trying to talk sense into anti-vaxxers, or people who believe diet soda makers are knowingly poisoning the population, or who think the Moon landings were faked.

The real problem with fake news isn't at the extremes - these people can't have their minds changed no matter what proof is provided. Where it is damaging is in the mainstream middle, where maybe someone who was going to vote for Clinton sees a friend share a story about her being indicted the weekend before the election, and stays home. There will be so many scandals swirling around Trump and his administration by 2020, it will be open season on fake news about Trump in the next election so I think that side will bear the worst of the fake news next time around.

Roses are red, you're over the moon, 'cos you work in infosec, and you're retiring soon

DougS Silver badge

Where will the next generation of IT specialists come from, PERIOD?

The problem with offshoring all the basic work to low wage countries is that there are fewer entry level jobs in IT. Between outsourcing in general, and moving to the cloud in particular, that's only going to get worse.

Sure, if you are a large company doing your own IT or a managed services provider, it makes sense to have the level one & level two support in cheap places, and hire experienced people locally for the high level work. But those people only exist because they once did lower level work, jobs that are fast disappearing. Not just in the UK, but in the US, and other high wage countries. But what makes sense in isolation does not make sense at all for the entire industry.

I almost wonder if those of us with a lot of IT experience may be like COBOL programmers in the late 90s, and end up highly sought out even past our retirement years due to the shortage of experienced people since there are fewer and fewer coming up below us. Sure, maybe things will have changed too much by then for that to happen, but I'll bet if you would have asked all those mainframe COBOL programmers in the 60s and 70s if their skills would still be relevant in 1999 they would have laughed.

2009 IBM: Teleworking will save the WORLD! 2017 IBM: Get back to the office or else

DougS Silver badge

They claim they save money either way!

First it saved money to get people out of the offices, because of reduced real estate costs. Somehow now those don't matter (and one of their six "strategic" offices is in Manhattan!) and they claim getting everyone together will save money. It will, but only because a lot of people will quit.

But I'm sure they know that, and want it to happen. Then they can replace the older workers who can't/won't relocate due to family with cheap college graduates willing to relocate, and offshore workers.

New PayPal T&Cs prevents sellers trash-talking PayPal

DougS Silver badge

@AC - risk of dealing with Paypal

No risk, I use a credit card for Paypal - I'd never give them access to my bank account! If I don't get satisfaction from them, I'll have my credit card provider reverse the charge to Paypal. Never had to do that though, I've had nothing but good dealings with Paypal.

Even when I've sold a few things on eBay over the years, no problems. Since they don't have my bank account info the money just gets held as a credit, which I then use for future purchases.

DougS Silver badge

If you only buy none of this matters

Assuming the price is the same with Paypal as with other payment methods, it isn't your problem if merchants get charged twice as much for using Paypal as using credit cards. I use paypal where available because it eliminates the chance of the merchant being careless with my credit card number and me having to hassle with a getting fraudulent charges canceled and a new card issued (granted the only "hassle" that really exists with this process is that it takes a bit of time for me to memorize the new credit card number)

Of course the risk is that the higher fees will make merchants who currently offer the option for paypal less likely to do so, so you have to go back to using credit cards for those sites, but again that's not my problem, that's paypal's problem.

Munich may dump Linux for Windows

DougS Silver badge

Re: Replacing Linux with Windows, based on *cost*?

Not sure what's wrong with Evolution, but why bother with a mail client when webmail is fine for what most people need their mail to do? Having a dedicated client is totally against the cloud first strategy that is becoming more and more prevalent for those wanting to reduce cost.

If there's no momentum behind Evolution and Thunderbird, maybe it is because fewer and fewer people are using a traditional heavyweight client for email these days?

I do admit to being curious why Munich thinks that it would be cheaper to have Windows than Linux. The training cost argument doesn't wash because everyone knew Windows and had to be trained on Linux back in 2004, just like today. Surely the functionality gap between the two was far greater in 2004 than it is today.

It is hard to imagine the TCO of Linux has gone up, which implies they believe the TCO of Windows has gone down. So what's the driver for that? Maybe they felt they needed a relatively more expensive PC to run Windows well than to run Linux well back in 2004, but now the cheapest possible PC will run either well?

Euro bloc blocks streaming vid geoblocks

DougS Silver badge

Re: This could backfire on them

Which is my point. You remove the ability for discriminatory pricing, and they'll charge the high prices everywhere. You're not going to win by enforcing this. Better to let them do it, and defeat it via VPNs.

DougS Silver badge

This could backfire on them

If a copyright holder wants to geolock so discriminatory pricing can be used where certain countries pay more (either because they are richer, or because they are more interested in the content) but providers aren't allowed to do this, what do you think will happen?

Do you really think copyright holders will charge the lower price everywhere? Of course not, they'll charge the higher price everywhere. Since that might hurt their bottom line, if they lose income in the formerly lower priced countries, they might even raise that higher price in hopes of making up for that lost income.

Trump cybersecurity order morphs into 2,200-plus-word extravaganza

DougS Silver badge

Spinning this

Trump will claim his executive orders are over 4x more efficient than Obama's, needing only 2200/10 = 220 words per report versus Obama's at 3000/3 = 1000 words per report!

SQL Server on Linux? HELL YES! Linux on Windows 10? Meh

DougS Silver badge

Running Linux on a laptop

I've never had a problem running Linux on my laptops. The first was a Dell I bought in 2001, suspend/resume didn't work on it, but then it didn't work properly when I booted in Windows XP, either. In 2006 I bought a Toshiba, and suspend/resume kinda worked, but not reliably enough to use. I didn't boot Windows on it often enough to know if it had the flaky suspend/resume also. I got a Dell in 2011, and it everything worked perfectly it on it, I'd leave it booted for months and just close the lid. I just replaced it with an HP (17t with Kaby Lake if you're curious) and it works perfectly too.

That's not to say there isn't a little futzing required. I can't remember what I had to do on the first couple, but I remember on the last Dell I had some wireless issues that took a little digging for unreleased patches to resolve, that were handled in the next kernel update a few months later. With the HP 17t I had a really weird problem where wireless simply didn't work, because there was an "acer-wmi" driver being loaded that thought it was wireless and overrode the real wireless. Took a few hours of google research before I tried something that realized that, then it was a simple matter of blacklisting that driver.

I think the keys to my success are:

1) don't buy ones with any weird or cutting edge hardware, like a built in fingerprint reader, and expect it to work

2) Install the version of Fedora (or similar relatively cutting edge distro) released AFTER you buy the laptop, that way it will have a new enough kernel that it has all the drivers you need. If you run some sort of LTS type distro then you'll be too far behind and you'll have problems unless you buy last year's laptop on special

3) get the model with the Intel GPU, not the discrete NVidia/ATI GPU - then you have to deal with either binary drivers or poorly maintained open source drivers

4) get the model with the Intel wireless/bluetooth cards, not third party

Big blues: IBM's remote-worker crackdown is company-wide, including its engineers

DougS Silver badge

Re: telecommuting marketing staff

Some people can handle it, some can't. I've never had a problem with it, and had management that I never met that managed quite effectively. There have to be clear goals and expectations. People can goof off in a big office just as easily. I've seen people in an office who take a half hour on a restroom break. One minute in the restroom, 29 minutes stopping at half a dozen offices/cubicles along the way.

Ex-NSA contractor Harold Martin indicted: He spent 'up to 20 years stealing top-secret files'

DougS Silver badge

Re: Er ...

If I was working with classified material, and had been helping myself to some of it, I'm pretty sure that after Manning and Snowden I'd get nervous that they were going to start cracking down on that sort of thing and stop.

I guess they were cracking down - it only took a bit over three years after Snowden to catch this guy!

More tech companies join anti-Trump battle, but why did some pay for his inauguration?

DougS Silver badge

Most companies hedge their bets

And contribute to both sides. Probably because technology companies viewed Clinton more favorably in the first place, and many expected her to win, they had donated to her campaign and probably not so much to Trump's. Donating to the inauguration is a way of making up for that. Probably they wouldn't have donated as much to Clinton's if she'd won, since they'd already curried the necessary favor.

While corporations will complain about stuff that hurts their business, most try to remain apolitical other than that. I think you'll find most back both horses in a typical election (say Obama vs Romney 4 years ago) without any reservation.

Samsung battery factory bursts into flame in touching Note 7 tribute

DougS Silver badge

Re: Fake News

You couldn't make something like this up!

Biggest Kodi sweep: Brit cops nab five, bag some dodgy sticks

DougS Silver badge

Can someone explain to a yank what this crackdown is all about?

It sounds like a combination of direct access to a bittorrent repository, plus they hacked Sky's streaming service so you can watch their stuff for free?

Who's behind the Kodi TV streaming stick crackdown?

DougS Silver badge

@Kane - Netflix original content

Are you seriously complaining that there is exclusive Netflix content you can't watch because you don't have Netflix? Why should Netflix be required to sell the rights to the competition? The whole idea is to encourage people to subscribe. Same with original Amazon Prime content, original HBO content, and so forth. If Google Music decided to make its own label and signed Lady Gaga, then Spotify and Apple Music subscribers shouldn't expect to be able to listen to her songs on their services. The whole reason they'd be paying her $ridiculous is because they'd hope the exclusive arrangement would cause a bunch of people to sign up.

I do agree with those complaining about all the arrangements for back catalog stuff so I can't say "I want to watch Hitchcock's 'The Birds' and expect to be able to find it whether I have Netflix, Amazon Prime, or other services, like I can 99% of the time if I wanted to listen to some song from the same time period regardless of what music service I have. Missing out on new stuff that's exclusive is one thing, but exclusive rights to stuff that decades old is just stupid and counterproductive.

Guilty! Four blokes conned banks in £160m fibre broadband scam

DougS Silver badge

Re: Planning ahead

If they did it over a three year period, it sounds like they had plenty of time to flee the country and disappear. They were too greedy.

Revealed: Malware that skulks in memory, invisibly collecting sysadmins' passwords

DougS Silver badge

Since companies often don't have internal firewalls

Infecting one PC with memory resident malware would allow it to infect other PCs using any random remote exploit combined with an escalation of privileges once aboard the new target.

Then even rebooting won't fix anything, you'll be reinfected by one of the other infected PCs. Even after a patch Tuesday update everything will eventually be reinfected, since not every PC will be rebooted at the same time. Even if the hole being used is patched, or an AV software vendor developed detection for it, the malware could download updates to continue operation (masquerading as what looks like normal web queries to mask the activity)

It written well enough and properly maintained, it could essentially be immortal. What are you going to do, get everyone in the company to shut down every PC all at once? Yeah right!

IBM's Marissa Mayer moment: Staff ordered to work in one of 6 main offices – or face the axe

DougS Silver badge

Creative way to get many US employees to voluntarily quit

Much cheaper than paying severance when you fire them, and opens up a lot of positions to hire with new college grads (for contracts that require US based support) and the rest overseas where it is cheaper.

I've been telecommuting almost exclusively for a decade now, there's no way I'd go back to working in an office. Especially if I had to move to some city assigned to me (I'll bet with little cost of living adjustment if someone living in a cheap place gets assigned to NYC or SF)

Feds snooping on your email without a warrant? US lawmakers are on a war path to stop that

DougS Silver badge

Re: Trump would probably veto it anyway

True, and then we'll get to see some entertaining tweets where he says "blame everyone who voted to override my veto next time anything bad happens" like he tried to blame the judge who overruled him.

DougS Silver badge

Trump would probably veto it anyway

He's totally in the pocket of law enforcement, he'll go with what they say and ignore a unanimous vote in congress.

Elon Musk joins anti-Trump legal brief

DougS Silver badge

If you're only fine with private individuals

Then I assume when you see cases where amicus briefs are filed by the DoJ, or EPA, or NRA, or NEA, or policeman's union, or the attorney general for Texas or NY you think that's "chilling" also? Or is it only when corporations do it, but other organizations are fine?

Amicus briefs are almost always filed by organizations or those representing them. Rarely would an individual file, and if they do you can bet that most of the time they are 1) rich and 2) have a personal stake in the outcome.

Big Tech files anti-Trump brief: Immigration ban illegal and damaging to business

DougS Silver badge

What stacked deck?

Before Scalia died, five of the justices had been named by republicans, four by democrats. Kennedy was appointed by Reagan, but because he thinks for himself and doesn't automatically vote with the conservative side (though he often does) a lot of republicans like to pretend he was appointed by a democrat.

DougS Silver badge

@bombastic bob

If you're hoping a guy who is supposed to be an 'originalist' in the mode of Scalia would uphold Trump's executive order, you're going to be in for a disappointment. The conservative justices are generally against efforts by the executive branch to expand its power, and it is the liberal justices who are for it. Remember not that long ago when Obama tried to essentially grant amnesty to all the illegal aliens currently in the US, provided they hadn't committed any crimes - go look at how they voted there.

I hope you don't think that conservative justices will be a rubber stamp for Trump because he's a republican - and you shouldn't want that, because powers attained by the executive branch are never given up, so when a democrat is back in the White House you'll have one with greater latitude for executive orders, courtesy of Trump.

What Obama tried to do and what Trump is trying to do are basically two different flavors of the same thing - attempting via executive order to legislate something that is clearly in the purview of congress to decide per the Constitution.

Anyway, there is no way the new justice will be seated by the time the Supreme Court reviews this case, even if the democrats offered no resistance. The case is moving way too fast for that - being heard in the appeals court tomorrow. The ruling will probably come mid week and Trump will have filed his appeal with the Supreme Court before the end of the week (unless he asks for an 'en banc' appeals court ruling first, which is unlikely)

Why does it cost 20 times as much to protect Mark Zuckerberg as Tim Cook?

DougS Silver badge

Sounds like it is only this spring, and then he will move to the White House. Who would want to start a new school in the middle of the year as a 10 year old?

The thing that will really rack up the costs (and make Obama's visits to Hawaii look like chicken feed) will be Trump's weekend junkets to his places in NYC and Florida. No doubt the republicans who were so outraged about Obama's secret service bill will suddenly go all quiet, because between regular weekend 'vacations' and Trump Tower security his secret service bill will probably exceed the total of all eight of Obama's years by the end of 2017!

Thought your data was safe outside America after the Microsoft ruling? Think again

DougS Silver badge

Re: I don't see this as a problem

This order concerns a US citizen and US company, with offshore data. The precedent would be limited to such cases or similar. It could not apply to a non US citizen and non US company. That's not to say that they couldn't get at your data, but THIS particular case will have no bearing whatsoever on whether they'll be able to.

DougS Silver badge

I don't see this as a problem

This was a legally executed search warrant on a US citizen, for data held by a US company. The subject was accused of fraud that occurred within the US, against a US citizen, and the court order stated that information related to the crime would be found in the data (presumably emails) Just because the data happened to be held outside the US without the user's knowledge shouldn't mean it is immune to discovery. If the court upheld such a result, Google could make themselves immune to search warrants by holding data on US citizens/users offshore.

This isn't anything like the Microsoft case, where the US authorities were trying to subpoena information related to a non-citizen non-resident. Nor was it like the Apple case, since Google is not being asked to break into its own systems or hack its own software to allow breaking a user's encryption.

There is absolutely no reason why people who live outside the US should be concerned with this ruling. It affects you about as much as the UK law forcing one to reveal passwords affects me.

FYI: Ticking time-bomb fault will brick Cisco gear after 18 months

DougS Silver badge

Re: Intel perhaps?

Hadn't heard about this but Intel did mention it on their earnings call and set aside a reserve for it, so it is obviously something they believe will be a real problem (setting aside reserves is typically only done for major issues that will cost a lot of money, like Samsung's exploding phones or the Xbox red rings of death)

If so, this is really good news for most of us, as only enterprise equipment will be affected. No one has an Atom C2000 in their home wireless router or smartphone.

DougS Silver badge

Hope it is not a repeat of the bad caps

I sure hope it is only used in enterprise gear, and not consumer gear like wireless routers and laptops. Otherwise this will be as ugly as the bad capacitors that made it into so much gear in the early 2000s...

Who do you want to be Who? VOTE for the BBC's next Time Lord

DougS Silver badge

Shame Capaldi is leaving

It might be seen as treason by the "Tom Baker will always be the best doctor ever" crowd, but I think he was the best doctor ever. Just the right combination of rough edges, self doubt, braggadocio and deadpan. Plus he had the look in his eyes that someone who has lived 2000 years would probably have.

I have really hated the succession of younger and younger doctors, trying to make him into a pin up boy. The doctor should be middle aged or older. I'm fine with a woman, just don't make her a hottie, that's not what Doctor Who is supposed to be about!

Comcast is totally down with you using a Roku to watch Xfinity cable TV – but it'll cost you extra

DougS Silver badge

SiliconDust HDHomeRun

If only this supported stuff like Apple TV and Roku as streaming targets you could avoid those fees. You'd just pay for the cable card that goes in the HDHomeRun, but nothing for all the client boxes on each TV.

I'm sure Comcast will set the fee for the Roku boxes high enough that it won't let you save money over renting Comcast boxes. They'll claim it is to offset support costs to develop the solution - but if they charged $10/month and had 100K people using Roku they could drop that to $1/month and probably get way more than 10x more people using it...

Tablets become feebleslabs as sales spiral down

DougS Silver badge

Phones got bigger

When your screen was 3.5", it was harder to do lots of reading than it is today when your screen is 5.5". Hence, less room for a tablet to be seen as necessary - especially the 7 to 8" size.

Also, less need for tablets to be upgraded as even an iPad 2 still works fine and was only orphaned by iOS 10 a few months ago. They have a replacement cycle much more like a laptop than a phone.

And who knows, maybe phones will start getting a longer replacement cycle. If so, it will hurt Apple and Samsung a lot more than slowing tablet sales.

Humanity needs you... to build an AI bot that can finger rotten headlines

DougS Silver badge

How can this work?

If you have an article "Trump facing imminent impeachment" what's the difference if it references "sources close to the House of Representatives", "senior republican Congressmen", "Todd Hays R-KS" (note there is no such person) "Speaker of the House Paul Ryan's staff" "Speaker of the House Paul Ryan"?

None, if the article is simply fake. If you check that the article has certain kinds of references, fake news will simply make up references that will pass the check". You can write the exact same article, claiming a quote from Paul Ryan saying that Trump faces impeachment, and it will be either true or stupidly false depending on whether the quote was accurate. How do you determine the accuracy of that quote, have the program email Paul Ryan asking if he actually said that?

Obviously for something like that it would be all over the news if it was true, but Paul Ryan probably would have given the original quote to only one source (unless it was a press conference with a lot of press attending) If the former, what's the source for the other articles aside from the original article? If I hack into foxnews.com and plant that fake story with the fake Paul Ryan quote, how many others will reference that? How many times will it be retweeted in the next 30 minutes? It would quickly be very widespread, so how is a bot supposed to figure out it is false? For that matter, how is a person supposed to? If you wait a bit someone will succeed in calling Paul Ryan or other high ranking house members and they'll deny it, and it will be revealed as a hoax in the next few hours.

But what if it is a story like "House republicans to investigate Trump's business deals in Turkey", which isn't going to attract the same feeding freezing that will quickly self correct the false impeachment story?

Netherlands reverts to hand-counted votes to quell security fears

DougS Silver badge

Re: Not much point tho.

No no no, the voter DOES NOT keep the paper copy! The machine prints out your paper ballot, which you can see and verify it didn't mark the box for candidate A when you selected candidate B on the screen, and you put that in a scanner that reads it to produce the initial. Same as if you filled in the little circles with a #2 pencil, it is just a hopefully more foolproof way of producing that since you don't have to worry about people using X's instead of filling in the circles properly, etc. (and because the generation after the millennials might not know how to operate a pencil ;))

If you take the paper copy with you, too bad, your vote will not get counted in the initial count OR the recount.

DougS Silver badge

Don't forget the Diebold (with a big republican booster CEO) machines supplied to Ohio and other states that some claim swung Ohio and the 2004 election to Bush. The suspicion goes both ways.

In order to protect against potential fraud or simple mistakes, ALL votes should leave a human readable paper ballot to allow hand recounts - which should be MANDATORY in 2% of precincts that are randomly selected as a sanity check, which trigger a full hand recount if they are off by more than a tiny margin.

Ohio bloke accused of torching own home after his pacemaker rats him out to cops

DougS Silver badge

Re: So the doctor just says he is guilty, so he must be?

Don't forget the other evidence like gasoline traces on his clothing, forensics indicating the fire started in multiple locations and different stories given to the police and 911 dispatch. Pretty sure the doctor's statement didn't make any difference in his conviction, the police/prosecutor probably only subpoenaed the pacemaker data because they wanted precedent so they could do it in future cases where it might matter more.

Juries in the US tend to assume that cops and expert witnesses such as doctors are telling the truth, which is why prosecutors like to put them on the stand. Not sure how this jibes with so many people claiming global warming is simply a lie (rather than saying they are skeptical because too much credence is given to unproven climate models) and believing there's a vast medical conspiracy about vaccines. I guess it shows that some people give even more credence to politicians and celebrities, who of course are well known for their vast knowledge of science and medicine...

Fear not, Europe's Privacy Shield is Trump-proof – ex-FTC bigwig

DougS Silver badge

Re: Nice article, but...

The US government went after the AT&T employee who revealed the tip of the iceberg of the warrantless wiretapping Bush started, so they're already going after whistleblowers. That's why the "tell your story to the press without any proof" kind of whistleblowing has been replaced with the "massive data dump" Manning/Snowden style whistleblowing. It is easier to be out of the line of fire (i.e. if you are able to cover your tracks, or flee the country in time) that way.

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