* Posts by DougS

12863 posts • joined 12 Feb 2011

Visa cries foul over Euro regulator's stronger authentication demands

DougS Silver badge

Re: Ridiculous

The retailers are only liable for fraud when they aren't following the card issuers and payment processor's rules. So if you don't follow PCI standards, or you accept a swipe from a card that has a chip and it proves to have a cloned mag stripe.

The banks eat most of the fraud. Yeah, in theory it is passed along to the retailers as part of the processing fee, but if they were able to eliminate all fraud that's more money in their pockets. Even if competition forced them to pass some of the savings along to retailers, they'd keep some them as profits, so they have incentive to reduce fraud. But only to the extent the cost of fraud reduction is made up for by the actual reduction in fraud.

The EU might as well require banks to prevent bank robberies while they're at it - that costs consumers money too.

Sorry, iPhone fans – only Fandroids get Barclays' tap-to-withdraw

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Magnetic card skimming

If you don't swipe your card (you tap or insert the chip end in) you prevent skimming since currently almost all skimming relies on data from the magstripe. So using the phone isn't preventing skimming, not using a magstripe is. Of course skimmers will eventually upgrade to devices that do NFC and chip reading, so entering your PIN on your phone would help there by preventing them from capturing your PIN, but other attacks like cash trapping (preventing the cash from being dispensed to you and others, with the criminal sending someone to pick it up later) aren't helped no matter how secure your authentication is.

But there's also a downside to entering your PIN on your phone. If you pull out your phone at an ATM, you make yourself an easier target for muggers. If they see someone approaching an ATM typing in a PIN they can grab their phone, run to the next ATM around the block, tap it, grab the cash and dump the phone. Or wait for you to cause it to dispense cash, then knock your phone out of your hand from behind on one side to distract you and grab the cash from the other.

Stay out of my server room!

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Re: The computer room was kindof okay

Let me guess. The way this government department's budget worked, it didn't pay for water or for electricity, but would have had to pay for the paint or reflective foil?

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Passive Aggressive Operator From Hell

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I assume things broke when stuff got hot and went down, like drives dying in your NAS? And that cost money, right? So you should have purchased something to automatically shut down everything when it got too hot in there. Then there'd be a quick correlation between whoever turned off the AC and everything going offline, and the finger of blame would point at the right place. And maybe if everyone got tired of that happening because people wouldn't learn, you could justify the investment for a separate cooling zone for the server room! :)

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Claim it is a fire hazard

Tell them you've heard from a friend who had their datacenter audited who found that having flammable items like boxes, chairs, tires and golf bags in your server room nearly got them shut down without notice until it was all quickly removed and dumped before the auditor left. Heck, I haven't read IFC/NFPA codes for a data center, but that might actually be in there.

A business I own was recently put on notice for a few things I never realized were NFPA violations (the previous inspector liked us and must have given us a pass) like multiplug adapters plugged into ceiling outlets without support, flammable items stored within 18" of the ceiling, having a door that isn't a marked fire exit actually usable as a door (which we are fixing by putting blinds over it so people don't "know" it is a door...sometimes the NFPA requirements are weird)

Another option could be to report the theft of some item that had been received as a free sample from a vendor (whatever excuse needed for it not to show up in a PO or in inventory) and suggest that all non-IT people be barred from access so it can be narrowed down should the culprit strike again. Give the directors an 'emergency access only' scenario - i.e. a code kept in an envelope in the company safe, which is changed after any use as part of the new more secure access policy.

That way they can still give "tours", but the code will change so they can't go back and dump stuff in there without you knowing when their one time code shows up in your logs.

HTC and OnePlus spruce up flagships for Santa's sack

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Angled bezel

What's wrong with it? It is pretty hard to be distinctive when almost every phone looks the same these days. I don't see any reason why that is any worse than vertical edges or rounded edges, it is just different.

Reg man 0: Japanese electronic toilet 1

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Re: Toilet dreams

I've never had a toilet dream involving #2, but occasionally #1. There is often something preventing me from finding a toilet, and when I do there are often issues like it is full or smells terrible or there's a lot of unknown fluid on the floor around it so I have to pee from a distance. Sometimes I can't overcome the obstacles and never go, other times I do manage to go. I've never peed the bed from peeing in my dreams.

I've found the real problem with peeing in my dreams is that since it is because I need to go for real, it doesn't cure the need in my dreams either. Nothing worse than dreaming you're peeing - especially if you had to overcome a lot of obstacles to do so - and then immediately needing to go again and having to overcome even more obstacles hoping for a return visit until the urge is finally great enough to wake me up!

DougS Silver badge


How in the world is having a separate bidet better than building that functionality into the toilet which is already taking up space and already has the connection to the sewer line? Though I have an ahem 'bog standard' toilet, I have seen bidet seats that can retrofit onto almost any toilet for $250 and up. Surely installing a bidet costs more than that, when you consider the additional plumbing work, even if you have the space. If you lived in a mansion with a bathroom larger than the typical living room and money is no object I still can't see any reason whatsoever why you'd want a standalone bidet!

One problem with the retrofit bidet seat is that for the IMHO non-negotiable functions like heating the water it is spraying most people would need a new electric line run as it isn't common to have an outlet next to your toilet. At least not in the US. I suppose if you were some sort of neanderthal OK with ice cold water (or living in such a tropical locale that tap water is lukewarm year round) a very simple model could be made to cost less than $50, with a mechanically operated on/off valve.

Once you have electricity run anyway I guess you might as well have a heated seat, though a blow dryer might be taking things just a bit too far!

2016. AI boffins picked a hell of a year to train a neural net by making it watch the news

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Re: BBC News Subtitles

If the subtitles are gibberish, they are probably being done via text to speech, which while no doubt more accurate than automated lip reading isn't without its own problems.

Emulating x86: Microsoft builds granny flat into Windows 10

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XGene vs A10

They have the same clock rate, and Apple's designs are very aggressive in terms of IPC - nearly at Intel levels - so I think it is actually not very likely XGene's per core performance is better than Apple's. Now obviously per chip it will blow away the A10, because it has so many more cores, but that's a different argument.

As for performance per watt, the less power you use the better your performance per watt. Since most ARM designs are using 1 to 2 watts, of course they blow Intel away. But Intel's own CPUs show that cherry picking the best CPUs and calling them 'U' series instead of 'K' series makes them about 5x better on performance per watt. If they downclocked/downvolted them further to 2 watts they'd do even better. Still not as good as ARM designs, but Intel is designing their cores to work best in the 20-50 watt range, while Apple and Qualcomm design theirs to work best in the 1-2 watt range - with appropriately adjusted pipeline sizes in terms of FO4 stages, etc. Modern CPUs have so much going on that the more complicated decoder required for x86 is simply lost in the noise in a multi billion transistor chip.

DougS Silver badge

Apple's migrations were different

PPC CPUs were faster than the available M68K CPUs, and x86 CPUs were faster than the available PPC CPUs.

With ARM they go the wrong direction. What would be the incentive for people to "upgrade" to ARM Windows on an ARM PC for less performance? People would keep buying x86 CPUs and stick with an x86 version of Windows.

Its like when Intel hoped to force the PC market to Itanium to get 64 bits. They thought by withholding 64 bit CPUs people who needed 64 bits would go Itanium, and as memory sizes increased eventually even desktop PCs would go Itanium (i.e. the last dregs of x86 CPUs would be sold in low end PCs today) But they didn't figure on AMD successfully creating their own 64 bit extension to x86, and Microsoft accepting it.

This is the one flaw in the idea about Apple transitioning the Mac to ARM. Yes, Apple's SoCs are by far the fastest ARMs around, and compare favorably on a performance per watt basis with Intel's x86 CPUs. But they are still only half the performance of Intel's highest end x86, and while a design targeted at using more power could bump that up somewhat, it would still mean a transition that costs performance - a hard sell for Apple's professional creative market where a performance drop of 5-10% might be tolerated, but not 30-40%.

Now there's no reason to think that it is impossible for Apple to design an ARM SoC that matches Intel's performance, and if Apple can do it Microsoft could (eventually, once they had a competent team like Apple does) do it. But it hasn't been done yet, and simply matching performance just gives you a migration for migration's sake. Apple could get away with it (especially if it meant bringing Continuum-like capability to the iPhone that could really run all Mac apps) but Microsoft has almost no userbase to amortize those development costs with - though I guess they have proven over the past 15 years that they're not averse to throwing billions down a black hole so who knows?

Twitter bans own CEO Jack Dorsey from Twitter

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No he uses DuckDuckGo

Because he doesn't want to be tracked...

Trial date set for Brit police 'copter coppers over spying-on-doggers claims

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Because they are useful in some circumstances for catching criminals - i.e. it is safer to follow a getaway car in a chopper than in a high speed chase.

Just tooling around in the chopper 'looking for crime' seems like a giant waste of money though, as well as something that could be obviously abused in this way to peek on unsuspecting people who assume they aren't being spied upon, or more likely peeking in on ex-wives, ex-girlfriends, daughters and other illegal surveillance.

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Re: @AC: "Dogging is a crime as far as I am aware, public decency."

Does the 'he' in those laws imply he or she? I assume it does.

It sounds like the UK law is more liberal than those typically found in the US (there is no national law against nudity or even public sex in the US, all such laws are state or local) In the US typically the law states "know or should have known" rather than "intends" someone observe.

So in the UK if you were naked in a field near a school an hour before classes were let out, and didn't know the students had early release that day and would be walking right by on their way home, it sounds like you'd (theoretically, at least) be in the clear? In the US, you'd not be, as they'd say you should have known that some days let out early.

DougS Silver badge

Not sure about the law in the UK, but doesn't it depend where? If you're in your own backyard and have a fence so the neighbors can't see, that's not illegal. If you are in a clearing well off the beaten path with no reason to think someone will walk by I wouldn't think that's illegal if no people actually go by - if only the cops are able to see you from the air but no citizens complain why should the police be involved?

IETF plants privacy test inside DNS

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Read the article again. It is encrypting not the DNS lookups from your browser, but the lookups from a stub resolver like the one your wireless router likely has to a full fledged DNS server like the one your ISP likely has. Since your stub resolver caches things you've looked up recently, the traffic to your ISP's resolver is a lot smaller and it can absorb the additional traffic from using encryption. DNS servers are hardly bandwidth bound (barring amplification attacks)

Since the UDP packet size for DNS is limited, due to all the additional stuff getting crammed into DNS these days it is more and more common to use TCP anyway.

Donald Trump confirms TPP to be dumped, visa program probed

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"New" cyber defense plan?

If he's asking the same generals who are in place today to come up with a plan, how is it going to be any different than the plan they have now? Is he going to say "I know you said the plan you have now is the best you can come up with, but I want something better than you came up with for Obama!"

Unless Obama was unwilling to commit to spending what they wanted to spend, and Trump is, I fail to see how Trump taking office will make our cyber defense any better. But I'm sure he'll say it is, regardless - and if there's a major breach in 2019 he'll pin the blame on Obama anyway.

China cites Trump to justify ‘fake news’ media clampdown. Surprised?

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Re: Hmm

Populism existed long before the internet. The internet helps it, but censorship would play right into the hands of guys like Trump and Brexit campaigners - "the establishment is out to get us!"

D-Link joins hands with Microsoft to give 'Super Wi-Fi' a push

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I think you misunderstand. The TVs don't need to report to create this database, it can be created from FCC filings the broadcasters are required to make, which includes contours and reception areas. I assume there is an equivalent requirement in the UK & EU.

The database would be kept in firmware, so the only need for internet access would be to perform a firmware update.

The trick is - how does it figure out where you are? It better mandate use of GPS, because if you trust the end user to do it, they won't always be honest/correct.

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Re: 54Mhz?

What's odd about 54 MHz? That's the lower edge of channel 2 in the VHF lo band in the US...

And I'm confused by Mage's comment that there is no TV white space. Of course there is, though it depends where you are. Where I'm located there are about 15 TV channels within 100 miles of me, which is about the maximum distance it is practical to receive a TV broadcast (if you have flat terrain and a large directional antenna on your roof) What possible harm could come of using the ones that are further than 100 miles away?

OK, the devil is in the details - hopefully 802.11af routers are required to have a valid GPS signal so the 'location based database' can be trusted. And the router will refuse to operate if that database hasn't been recently updated - especially since sometime in the next few years we're going to be doing a mad scramble of TV frequencies, and selling off some of the higher numbered channels from 38-51 or so.

Even 'listen before use' should work pretty well, given the 15 db SNR required to recover an ATSC signal means you should be able to hear something even with a pretty crappy antenna so you won't interfere with your neighbor's ability to receive a distant station.

Anyway, this is going to be more interesting to people in rural areas. I can't imagine someone in a city having any need to receive their wifi from a quarter mile away, but that's easy to imagine if you live out in the country. I'm skeptical of the claims this will be used for rural broadband though. That's already well underway via fixed LTE using dedicated (non-mobile) bands.

Facebook recruits some help to fight fakes, but doubles down on wisdom of the crowd

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They are talking about FAKE stories, not slanted stories

Yes, what Fox News says about something may not be the same as what MSNBC says about it. But that's a world of difference from making something up, like the the stories that had the Pope endorsing Trump or an FBI agent investigating Hillary's emails murdered under suspicious circumstances. There's no slant there, these are just complete fabrications.

As for the purveyors of these fake stories marking real news fake to try to muddy the water, one would hope not just anyone will be able to flag a story as fake. Otherwise a negative but true story about Trump would be flagged as fake by his followers, a negative but true story about Hillary would also be (or would have been, no one cares now that she lost) flagged as fake by hers.

I would guess maybe people can flag a story and if enough do someone at Facebook will take a look at it. If it references some newspaper that doesn't exist, who is a fake page that claims to be Fox News or CNN but actually isn't, or quotes a NYT article that doesn't exist, it will be easy. If it is some fringe site that makes stuff up, it will be a little more difficult, but presumably if a certain site has a few stories marked fake they could use that knowledge to automatically flag other questionable stories from there - an incentive for such sites to clean up their act and not repost fake shit.

It won't be easy, and it won't be without controversy, but there are too many brain dead people who see a story against the politician they hate and automatically like and share it not knowing or even caring if it is false. I saw one guy I know is pretty smart (owns his own business worth millions) sharing obviously bullshit stories in the last few months. I assume he knew what he was doing and was just trying to muddy the waters, but maybe he was so brainwashed by Hillary hatred that he really believed the NYPD was investigating her for being part of a child porn ring and other batshit crazy stuff.

US Director of National Intelligence legs it

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Re: No-one is serious about this

I've been watching Designated Survivor this fall, and I can't help but think something like that happening would actually have some upside...

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@Mark 85 - booting Wyden off the committee

No, that's not how it works. Just because the republicans have a majority doesn't mean they get to choose what democrats are on which committees. The democrats decide who they want for their seats in the various committees, and republicans have no say at all. Those with more seniority get first choice, so Wyden will remain where he is.

The solution to security breaches? Kill the human middleware

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Re: The recent high-profile hacks of the Democratic Party's email servers ...

Pretty much every intelligence related agency in the US government agrees it was the Russians. They have the motive and the means. If they were allowed to release the evidence, it would probably be sufficient to convict in a court of law. Of course, we all know there have been cases where someone is convicted of murder but later found innocent - even a confession isn't a foolproof measure of guilt.

Regardless of whether you believe the Russians were responsible, only a fool would think they don't have a vested interest in trying to hack any and all data they can get their hands on concerning the levers of power in the US government. Now that those levers are passing to the republicans, they will a greater interest than previously to hack them. Perhaps even moreso with Trump's election, to help them gain insight into what Trump plans to actually do. Trump certainly shouldn't consider himself 'safe' because he says nice things about Putin, but maybe he's only worried about his mythical 400 pound guy on a bed.

The Pew 'gig economy' study is here, and it's grim

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How is the "gig economy" part of the tech industry?

Because you use an app to call a maid or someone to drive you from point A to point B, doesn't mean that person is a tech worker. They're still a maid or a cab driver.

Samsung flames out as Chinese march on

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Re: 14% vs 6%

Q3 is still a sales comparison with the 6, which for reasons I've stated many times had specific reasons of filling untapped demand that led to it having a very large sales spike that would be almost impossible to match. We'll get a better sense of where they stand in Q1 2017 (Q4 has the release of the new model, which is always supply constrained at first, making comparisons more difficult)

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Re: Falling from the tree

The 20% price hike only affects the UK, so the effect on their worldwide market share will be very minimal. I suspect the lack of the 3.5mm jack will likewise prove to be minimal, and we'll see more Android phones dropping it next year.

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

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"If the 7S doesn't do something spectacular"

Then you'll switch to the Galaxy S8 or Pixel? What exactly are the "spectacular" things those do that the iPhone doesn't? What do you think you would get from those that your 6 doesn't do now, and the 7 doesn't do? It sounds like you're complaining the 7 looks too similar to a 6, which is a stupid thing to complain about. Do you replace your car every few years when your favorite model comes out with a redesign, just because they made the headlights and grill look different and changed the slope of the hood?

At least on the laptop side you've actually bothered to list a couple things you find useful that is lacking on the Macs. I happen to think touch screens are completely useless on a laptop, but everyone has different opinions there. For my part, I just ordered a new 17" HP laptop, and specifically chose the model WITHOUT touch not even primarily because it saved a few bucks but because it somehow saves nearly half a pound!

Upgradability is more of a concern, though in 15 years of owning laptops I've upgraded exactly once - replacing the hard drive in my current one with an SSD. Hopefully Apple knows what it is doing here. I will say the techie crowd at the Reg sees lack of upgradability as a FAR worse sin than the average buyer will. A small minority of PCs/laptops are ever upgraded during their lifetime. However, if Apple loses the techie / pro market where people who upgrade or at least value the option to upgrade, that can only hurt them in the long term. I think making the RAM and storage non-upgradeable in a product sold as "Pro" is indefensible. I could see doing it on the non-Pro lines though.

Apple admits the iPhone 6 Plus has 'Touch Disease'

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SIX year warranty?

Maybe you guys should remember that next time you bitch about the unfair exchange rate comparison to US prices. Obviously at least some of that difference is down to the additional warranty expense over the one year warranty we get in the US.

And with one stroke, Trump killed the Era of Slacktivism

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Re: The Electoral College System

The founding fathers were very concerned about the "tyranny of the majority", which is why they set up two houses in the legislature, one with proportional representation and one with equal representation. California has a much larger voice in the house than Wyoming, but they're equal in the senate - and bills must pass both on the way to becoming law. That's also why things like constitutional amendments require such a large supermajority, why the senate requires 60 votes to break a filibuster, and on and on.

If the US went to a national popular vote, candidates would only visit very populous areas. They'd advertise on nationwide TV instead of local stations. It would change campaigning in ways that may not be apparent, and may not be for the better.

Granted, the electoral college has some shortcomings. While candidates might recognize the concerns of a smaller state like Iowa, because it has become a swing state, other small states that are solidly blue or red will be ignored because gaining a few percentage points doesn't do anything. However, over the long term states can change as their demographics change. Also, states can choose to allocate their electoral votes proportionally or by congressional district. If a state that's solidly red or blue decides to do that, it can become important in a tight race if a few percentage points mean swinging one electoral college vote, or if a state has "swing districts".

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Re: So true

C'mon, their campaigns made it abundantly clear what they were going to do:

Trump: not be Clinton

Clinton: not be Trump

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Re: So true

When people want change, it is pretty hard to run as a consummate insider in the same party that has controlled the White House for eight years, even if that president has 58% job approval.

If Clinton had a little charisma, and actually had something to offer the angry white blue collar workers who see their career prospects getting worse every year, she would have beaten a buffoon like Trump easily. They knew Trump was telling them what they want to hear "we'll bring those jobs back from China and Mexico" and they know it isn't possible to actually do that. But a vote for Clinton would be voting for four more years of the same, and the same wasn't working for them. They were willing to take a chance on doing something different, because they didn't have much to lose.

FYI Apple fans – iCloud slurps your call histories

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This is why I don't use iCloud

Call histories are the least of your concerns - your carrier already has that information and given how chummy they are with the Feds there's no way they don't share that info on request (and perhaps illegally in bulk)

The article mentions Apple "keeping logs of your iMessage conversations" but that's wrong. They do have records of who you contact though, because you have to go through Apple's servers when you initially make contact (the actual messages are encrypted with a key Apple doesn't control/know so they can't get at the content itself)

Then there is all the other stuff iCloud can back up, like contacts, photos, calendars and so forth. My issue with iCloud is that while it is encrypted during transit to Apple, and at rest on their servers, it isn't encrypted with a key only I control. When they fix that, which I'm led to understand they are working on, I'll start using iCloud. Until then I'll use the more cumbersome method of backing up via iTunes, since that is encrypted with a key only I control.

Qualcomm taps Samsung to make next-gen 10nm Snapdragon

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Re: Chip size and thinner?

"People want better battery life and more robust" is not universally true. Some people like you want that. Others like me find that battery life is more than I need (I typically charge my 6S plus every other day, so long as the first day doesn't take it below 60-65%) and robustness is rarely an issue with thinness at least as far as bending goes. Making a thicker phone isn't going to make it better at surviving drops unless you use that thickness to build ugly bumpers into the phone instead of adding battery. Obviously there's a market for tough phones, or cases to survive tough environments like construction, but those are niche markets. Thinner phones with smaller batteries weigh less, especially at the large sizes of today's phones, so I'm all for making them even thinner if it further reduces the weight and they don't bend.

I agree with you about chip thickness. I constantly see that mentioned, but it is silly. Apple used InFO packaging for the A10 which made the package slightly thinner than their previous SoCs but the big win was stacking the DRAM and Flash with higher speed and higher pin count interfaces than in a traditional stack, so the logic board is presumably now smaller as a result.

AMOLED is still a compromise, and I'm hoping something comes of Apple's purchase of Luxvue. They claimed to have cracked the problem of manufacturing inorganic LEDs. Supposedly they use less power, have greater brightness, longer lifetime and eventually larger color gamut. I keep wondering if the rumors of Apple switching to OLED are really Apple switching to this, but maybe they found they couldn't make them cost effectively or at a high enough yield yet and they will go with ordinary AMOLED eventually now that it can be bright "enough", even if not as bright as iPhones currently are.

DougS Silver badge

Quick Charge 4 is merely compatible with USB-C

It is still proprietary, but it meets Google's new Android requirement of compatible with USB-C power delivery standards. It will still violate USB standards when connected to a QC4 charger, but it will work when connected to a USB-C charger (and charge at normal USB speeds only)

Elon Musk wants to launch 4,000 satellites and smother globe with net connectivity

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Re: Incoming!

Don't they typically adjust the orbit of NEO satellites to enter the atmosphere and burn up when they are retired? It is GEO satellites that are a problem, because they are too high for a safely controlled entry/burn so instead they are required to reserve fuel to boost a couple hundred miles higher to a parking orbit where they sit "forever".

Nest Cam: A compelling piece of hardware-software

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Maybe you want to check the privacy policy first

This camera is basically sending pictures of everyone who ever comes in your front door back to Google, which generally includes everyone who lives there, as well as all of your/their good friends. Do you really believe Google isn't going to run facial recognition algorithms to tie that to your identity and that of your kids - who no doubt have been tagged in pictures on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat or other social media via public accounts accessible to Google's search bots?

Now their marketing/advertising engine knows where your kids live, when they are home or away, etc. Which I suppose they already know if they have Android phones, but now Google can also identify who their and your close friends are - the people who actually visit your home. Who needs the failed Facebook clone Google+ to tell them the relationships when you willingly PAY them to provide that info to them? Let's say their giant database knows Bobby's parents bought PS4 this Christmas. Thanks to your Nest cam, it knows Bobby visits regularly and is one of your son's best friends. So now the algorithm will decide to start putting more PS4 ads in front of his and your face so he'll ask for the same for his birthday...

If I was going to buy some smart home technology, particularly a camera that sent video back to home base for processing, the LAST company I'd EVER buy from was Google or a company like Nest that Google owns. Why in the world would you want to give the largest data miner and advertiser on the planet access to video INSIDE your home? And pay them for it? You'd have to be a special kind of moron to think that's just fine.

I wonder if a careful reading of the policy will tell you whether it STILL sends video back to home base even after your subscription lapses? So they can keep collecting data on you, even when you don't benefit from it.

DougS Silver badge

Strawman claims

1) make a false claim that "everyone" was against something that is commonplace today

2) equate that "something that is commonplace today" is equivalent to this new thing you're pushing

3) imply "this new thing" will become just as commonplace

Sorry, but digital copies of music != smart home technology. Especially subscription smart home technology that you have to pay ridiculous prices for.

Virgin Galactic and Boom unveil Concorde 2.0 tester to restart supersonic travel

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55 passengers?

Surely if they made it a bit larger to handle a more reasonable passenger load it could be much more economical. After all, it is only going to be used on certain long haul flights - and probably only over water, so NYC to London, SFO to Tokyo and other popular routes would be the target so filling a plane of almost any capacity shouldn't be that hard if it gets there in half the time.

It is almost not even worth it for London to NYC these days however, given that of all the time taken from door to door to your destination, a three hour savings in flight time might not amount to much as a percentage of travel time. Back in the 60s/70s when you didn't need to show up two or more hours in advance of an international departure supersonic travel would have made a bigger difference in overall travel time.

Navy STEALS? US sailors dispute piracy claim

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Re: if they bought concurrent

Obviously it was put into their standard install image. That would make sense even if only 5% of their users might want to use it, as long as it isn't a large application. Maybe it is something that those who might use it would only use occasionally.

Fake election news meltdown vortex sucks in Google

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Re: Google vs Wikipedia

Not fully checking a story before reporting it is kind of a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation. Proper journalists will be scooped every time except on a story they uncover and research all by themselves - and even then they have to hope it doesn't leak at the last minute. Before the internet this was less of a concern, since you knew that other networks / newspapers had journalists with similar standards you did and wouldn't jump the gun on a story that was unsourced. After Drudge Report outed the Lewinsky story that was being carefully researched by proper journalists, the world changed forever.

So a network or paper that rigorously fact checked everything it reports won't be reporting the "news", it will be rehashing stories others have reported while those others will have already moved on to newer stuff. That's hardly a recipe for success in today's world. It would also leave them open to charges of bias, if for instance they didn't report a negative story about Clinton because it couldn't be confirmed, no doubt Trump and his followers would claim the reason is because they are a biased source protecting Clinton.

There's also the question of what "facts" exactly you are checking. When women came forward to accuse Trump of improper advances, should it not be reported unless it can be confirmed? What is confirmation, a sworn statement from the women? Guilt in a criminal court? A finding in a civil court? Trump admitting it? The story was the accusation itself, and it is pretty much impossible to prove such claims especially when they happened years ago. There was no proof against Cosby or Sandusky, but once the number of claims became large enough public opinion went against them. In Trump's case, his detractors immediately believed it, his supporters probably wouldn't believe it even if a thousand women came forward with sworn statements.

Samsung flings $8bn at buyout of connected car biz Harman

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Apple has done a pretty good job of excising about all Samsung manufactured content from the iPhone. The only thing in the iPhone 7 from Samsung is the LPDDR4. Obviously that's something they could get elsewhere if they really wanted, but maybe they feel it is in their interest to always buy one thing from them just to keep the lines of communication open so they have more options in the future.

Swedish prosecutor finally treks to London to question Julian Assange

DougS Silver badge

"Admirers in the new administration"

This actually points to a reason why Wikileaks would have been so one sided in its leaking. If Clinton is president, then Assange would feel he needs to hide out in the embassy for another 4-8 years. Since Trump is so easily manipulated - say good things about him or do things favorable to him and he likes you, do the opposite you feel the ire of his 3am tweet storm - he just had to be seen as helping Trump in the election and he'll finally be able to leave the embassy in two short months!

IBM offers Trump its ideas to Make America Great Again

DougS Silver badge

Re: Postcard from the edge


Google and Facebook pledge to stop their ads reaching fake news websites

DougS Silver badge

Re: Do people want to be lied to?

Yes, it is a bit of a problem that Trump is changing his tune on so many things before he's even taken office. At least with Obama it took a while before it became obvious that his election promises of ending the wars, stopping the warrantless wiretapping and so forth were just that.

The best promise he made, to "drain the swamp" by eliminating lobbyists, is already broken as he's bringing them in by the dozens to "advise" him on appointments. They'll advise him "you need to bring in someone with industry experience" and recommend a fellow lobbyist - or themselves. That, and the promise to introduce a constitutional amendment for term limits in congress will go nowhere because it has already been shown that republicans only campaign on such things when they are out of power. The minute they get power, they claim term limits are somehow no longer necessary!

Security bods find Android phoning home. Home being China

DougS Silver badge

Built into the firmware?

Given how rare OS updates are for Android phones, what are the odds that any phone with this backdoored firmware ever gets a firmware update to remove it?

China gets mad at Donald Trump, threatens to ruin Apple

DougS Silver badge

Impeaching Trump

Why would democrats go along with impeaching Trump, presuming that he's not doing major damage to the country but is just simply incompetent to the point that the republicans would rather have Pence in charge? Or maybe they'd want to dump him if he doesn't toe the line as a "proper" republican.

The democrats 1) do not want a religious extremist like Pence as president and 2) why should they help republicans by removing Trump if he's damaging the party? If Trump does a terrible job, it will be a democrat landslide in 2020, it would be stupid of them to give republicans the necessary votes (it takes 2/3 of the senate, not a majority) to convict if the republican house majority voted to impeach him like they did Clinton.

CERN boffins see strange ... oh, wait, that's just New Zealand moving 2m north

DougS Silver badge

I'm glad they explained this at the end

I was thinking that must have been one hell of a quake if Geneva was now located in New Zealand!

Zuckerberg says just one per cent of news on Facebook is fake

DougS Silver badge

Re: skewness

People don't go to Facebook with the intention of looking for news, and because something was shared by their friends they tend to give it more credence - perhaps assuming their friend wouldn't have shared it if wasn't legit.

It is interesting that back when the internet was fairly new to the average person 20 years ago, and media was starting to report on it, they had a lot of talking heads saying how it would make the world a smaller place because people could be exposed to viewpoints from all over, and not just the narrow set of those found where they live. Unfortunately it has worked the other way, and many people self-select their friends and get a far narrower set of viewpoints than they get even from their neighbors!

It is only made worse by people becoming angry when they are exposed to different viewpoints. They see "liberal media bias" in the stories Facebook promotes if some of them are liberal. They unfriend people for sharing positive stories about Trump. Facebook aids in this by giving people more of what they "like" so if they like a lot of stories from Breibart, they'll see more of them than someone who likes a lot of stories from HuffPo, so it is no wonder people were so surprised about the election results. Clinton supporters can't believe she lost. Trump supporters can't believe he didn't win in a landslide. Thanks to Facebook they are so insulated they think almost everyone agrees with them, it is only a tiny fringe in NYC/SF that supported Clinton, or just a few racist KKK members in the backwoods that supported Trump.

Zuckerberg is probably right that deliberately faked stories on the National Enquirer level didn't affect the election. He's wrong if he thinks that Facebook's algorithms aren't contributing towards making the polarization of people in the US even worse than the internet in general was already.

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