* Posts by DougS

12863 posts • joined 12 Feb 2011

Tesla’s Autopilot losing track of devs crashing out of 'leccy car maker

DougS Silver badge

Re: Musk has set aggressive targets for Autopilot

Are you by any chance related to amanfromMars1?

DougS Silver badge

Re: Really?

Waymo is also conservative in that they drive all their miles in a few small areas, so they can have those areas mapped down to the millimeter. They probably have the car steering around potholes because it already knows where they are, if indeed there are any potholes in the nice neighborhoods they're driving around in.

Those Waymo cars that drive so successfully would have no fricking clue what to do if you took them into a new area with different challenges they've never faced. If you only want a car to drive you around the city limits of Palo Alto and Sunnyvale you'll probably be able to get one before long :)

DougS Silver badge

Re: Compensate for bad weather

They might encounter a bit of rain here and there during their testing in CA and AZ, but those places don't have the kind of heavy downpours where you have to pull over due to lack of visibility. They've probably never tested with a single snowflake on the ground.

DougS Silver badge

I'm guessing you live somewhere without weather

Lines on the road don't last too long where I live. Most roads don't have lines at all. Basically you'd be limiting the self driving to a minority of roads. That minority of roads may account for 90-95% of overall mileage, but we are probably not far from cars that handle 90-95% of driving today. That's probably worse than letting people drive all the miles, because if you only drive 5% of the time you drive now you are probably not going to be as good at it - people who are just learning to drive today and never drive more than 5% of their overall miles will NEVER become good at it.

That ignores when the car doesn't know what the hell to do if e.g. blowing snow covers the lines in the road and the car has to come to a quick and unexpected halt because it no longer has its punch card input to tell it what to do.

And nevermind how much more expensive it would be needing to keep the lines painted well enough for the car to see, and the inevitability of miscreants changing the paint lines so they encode something like "detour right" on a bridge.

DougS Silver badge

Its like he read about how Steve Jobs got his people to believe they could do the impossible, but skipped the motivation part and only kept the screaming and blaming part.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Autonomous driving is months, years, or decades away

Not true, I would LOVE to hand over the driving to my car. I could go out and get drunk and have it take me home. I could have it drive 1000 miles to the east coast while I slept, surfed the net and watched movies instead of getting groped by the TSA and taking about as long to get there if I count up all the waiting around and travel to/from the airport. Errands to the grocery store could go either way but I certainly wouldn't feel "emasculated" by having the car drive me. Anyway, it seems like that would only be a potential problem for half the population anyway.

I get pleasure from driving maybe 2% of the time I drive, but I'd be happy to sacrifice that if I got a car without a steering wheel that never needed one. But the fact that humans like me can get confused sometimes when signage or construction areas aren't clear doesn't give me much confidence that software will be able to handle it until I'm so old I'll have no choice but to hand over my driving to software.

Getting 99% or even 99.99% of the driving is the easy part. Its that last bit of really tough/confusing/etc. that will take forever and will result in MORE accidents whether you say "fuck it" and let the car try to figure out and accept some deaths or the car wakes you up and says "we've reached a place where I don't know what to do, so you will have to take over if you want to go any further" and people who hardly ever drive (or in the case of younger people, have almost NEVER driven) are suddenly saddled with the most difficult driving situations possible. Yeah, that's a recipe for success...

DougS Silver badge
Stop

Wrong

They need to be shown to be about 10x better than human drivers. For one thing, humans have a wide range of driving abilities, but most of them think they are better than average. Would YOU let a car drive if you it was known to be "exactly as good as the average driver"?

Second, people have a lot more tolerance for mistakes they make themselves versus mistakes that are not in their control. Look at how upset people get over plane crashes despite air travel being far safer than car travel overall.

Third, people drive in ALL conditions, and until cars drive in ALL conditions they will be self selecting for the easiest driving like expressways, and avoiding the difficult driving like in a snowstorm. So metrics like the bullshit Tesla fanboys try to push claiming Autopilot is already safer than humans are a crock. The comparisons must be like for like.

Grav-wave eggheads come closer to nailing down Hubble's Constant – the universe's speedy rate of expansion

DougS Silver badge

There's a third possibility

The rate of expansion hasn't been constant throughout the history of the universe. Some theories of the Big Bang pretty much require a period of really fast inflation in the first few moments, but even ignoring that there's no reason to assume that the rate of expansion today is identical to the rate of expansion 6 billion years ago. Especially if our universe is part of a bigger metaverse, and energy from the 'outside' influences our expansion.

If the rate of expansion isn't constant, then it makes sense that the constant calculated via the cosmic background radiation (which basically measures the rate of expansion at what 750,000 years of age of something like that?) and the rate calculated using Type Ia "standard candle" supernovas at varying distances and the rate calculated by measuring gravity wave events like neutron star or black hole mergers.

So I'm not sure they should reject the calculation of one method as "wrong" merely because it doesn't agree with the answer achieved using another method.

Huawei website ████ ██████ security flaws ██████ customer info and biz operations at risk: ███████ patched

DougS Silver badge

Re: "... any CVE numbers for the flaws, ... have all been omitted"

Getting a CVE assigned is voluntary, so Huawei can easily omit those by not applying for them.

Not all heroes wear capes: Contractor grills DXC globo veep on pay rises, offshoring, and cuts to healthcare help

DougS Silver badge

I consulted alongside and with HP from the late 90s until a decade ago

The first time I worked with them I was consulting for the company that had hired HP, so I worked alongside them. They had some top people, really smart, I learned a lot from them. Made some contacts that led to me being contracted by HP in 2000 on a big project, again working with top people (all consultants like me, being supported by employees) We were getting paid insanely well, but our little team of 8 accomplished more over that 6-7 month project than I've seen teams of 50 do over three years in subsequent projects.

After the dot com bust HP started getting cheap. First just around the edges, but by the time of my last engagement with them about a decade ago they were really going downhill. I was helping them bring on some full time people for the project I was working (i.e. to replace me and the other consultants at a fraction of the cost) but all the good people I recommended didn't get hired. I assume because the salary wasn't high enough (I didn't see that part of it) and they ended up hiring people I hadn't even interviewed because I thought they were worthless based on their resume.

And it turned out they were worthless. They were just unable to comprehend what I'd set up for them to automate rote tasks like storage setup on blades or the daily massive storage allocations the client required, so they did everything manually at 10x the effort.

After that I quit answering when people I still knew from HP were trying to get me back for another gig. It was too depressing seeing how far they had fallen. Clearly they have continued to fall since then.

DougS Silver badge

Re: It's called a Cost Of Living Adjustment.

The fat cats will be fine, DXC would be sold to some other managed services company who would take over their contracts.

What I don't get is that there are no "premium" managed services providers out there. Surely there are some companies who have been dicked around enough by the DXCs of the world and would be willing to pay a 20-30% premium for first class service provided by a company that's adequately staffed with top people. I guess not.

DougS Silver badge

Re: lol

Most shareholders don't hold individual stocks for years and years anymore. The companies you feel you do that with (I have Berkshire Hathaway and Apple among my few individual stock holdings in my retirement account, and neither has been touched in over a decade) are few and far between.

To the extent that shareholders are taking a "buy and hold" attitude on DXC shares they might get screwed due to such short term thinking, but if they have a short term attitude about DXC they'll sell them and move on to someone else before they really tank. The people who will get shafted are those who hold DXC shares for a long time - I wonder to what extent long time employees hold DXC shares? Hopefully they can easily invest their retirement accounts elsewhere, and if they are awarded DXC stock/options they don't have to hold them too long before they're able to sell.

DougS Silver badge

Re: "the workforce doesn't carry the hopes and dreams of shareholders on their back"

incentive programs for high achievers in ALL parts of the company (not just sales)

The reason you see incentive programs / bonuses for sales people and not in other parts of the company is as much because sales is one of the few jobs where performance is so easily measured as it is management valuing sales above other jobs.

How do you measure the performance of a developer? Lines of code? I think we all know what a terrible metric that is for many reasons. How do you measure the performance of a Windows admin? For example, if you measure by downtime, he's incentivized to delay patching (even if you don't count planned downtime) due to the risk a patch might cause problems.

If management KNEW how to measure the performance of modern knowledge workers you can be damn sure they would, and they would happily reward the top performers. The problem is, they have no idea who out of a team of 30 Windows admins are the best, and even if they know "Bob is my go to guy who gets things done" they don't really know if Bob is 20% better than the average, 50% better, or 500% better.

A sales guy's entire output is one of numbers, so it is easy to fit into a formula (for better or worse) to determine how much better he is than the average sales guy - and if worse they have defendable metrics on which to base his firing. The best admin is like the Maytag repairman from the old commercials, who appears to be doing fuck all 40 hours a week, and produces no output that can be plugged into a formula to determine his performance. A manager who doesn't understand this might see Bob surfing the web on El Reg and Slashdot during work hours and think he's a slacker and fire him.

Chrome's default-on ad blocker – which doesn't block adverts on 99% of websites – goes global

DougS Silver badge

Re: The new definition of pointless

And worse, they've rigged the system to limit the ability of users to install proper ad blockers. When Mozilla/Firefox was struggling to compete against IE, anyone remember what it was that really turned the tide? It was when it gained the ability to block pop ups, an ability IE lacked.

All you need is for regular people browsing on Chrome to get bombarded with "approved" (i.e. google sourced) ads and have a friend show them the ad free experience they can get using Firefox + uBlock or similar. Chrome is going to be bleeding market share, but I don't see the Chrome group in Google ever having the power to go up against the ad group that pays all the bills. At least not until Chrome is back to a minority browser share where it belongs.

Got an 'old' Tesla? Musk promises 'self-driving' upgrade chip ship by end of 2019

DougS Silver badge

Re: Self Driving RoboTaxis is what Tesla want ASAP

if the occasional problems (bad signage, misleading road stripes, weather, construction, etc etc etc) can be handled

I happen to own a neural net I trained myself (with a bit of help over the first couple decades) that is still occasionally confused by bad signage, misleading road stripes, construction, etc. so good luck seeing 100% autonomous vehicles within the next decade, if in our lifetime.

The best we can hope for are vehicles that are autonomous but when they get into trouble contact a "support center" where a human will slowly/carefully remotely drive them through the confusing situation. Getting 99.99% of the expressway miles will be easy - heck we are probably already there. Its that last .01% that (literally) kills you. Or maybe doesn't kill you very often, but drives you into wet cement, or off a 18" drop off into a construction area, or whatever.

I doubt we see level 5 in my lifetime. Level 4.9 or so maybe, where "things that occasionally confuse a human today will require help from humans for the foreseeable future" is a given.

DougS Silver badge
Trollface

Re: Another Musk lie

Hey the Battle of Baggage Claim was one of General Washington's greatest victories over the redcoats, don't let those damn Brits try to pretend like it never happened!

DougS Silver badge

Re: Another Musk lie

Its a good thing he wouldn't be eligible to run for president of the United States, he seems to fit the qualifications that nearly half the electorate find desirable.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Looking forward to it

A car that can't even tell when it is going to run into a semi trailer crossing the road (twice) or a stationary fire truck clearly needs some upgrades to its software even for its forward vision, let alone 360* awareness.

DougS Silver badge

Just because Tesla "wants" it

Doesn't mean it will happen anytime soon. Anyone who believes Musk's insane bullshit about having self driving robo taxis next year is going to be sorely disappointed. Anyone recommending their council plan for cars driving around town picking up passengers on their own is at least a decade ahead of reality.

Sure if you peruse "pro Tesla blogs" they will talk about this because they're dumb enough to believe their lord and savior. When it doesn't happen they'll find someone to blame, Musk is good at blaming others when things don't go his way.

Firm fat-fingered G Suite and deleted its data, so it escalated its support ticket to a lawsuit

DougS Silver badge

Re: They expected Google to keep it after it was deleted?

Google's contracts were written by Google, do you think they are obligated to do anything under the terms of their contracts? The only obligations they'll have would be legal ones that depend on which country's laws are applicable.

It isn't like you can call up Google and tell them you want to negotiate a contract for GMail services. They will tell you it is on the web site, and if you don't like the terms you can get elsewhere.

DougS Silver badge

They expected Google to keep it after it was deleted?

They only do that with your personal information they use for advertising. Your own data is of no value to them so of course it gets binned the moment you delete it!

Timely article on CNBC showing exactly this - if you delete your Gmail Google keeps the purchase history they stole out of your emails: https://www.cnbc.com/2019/05/17/google-gmail-tracks-purchase-history-how-to-delete-it.html

Let's check in with Samsung to see how it's riding out the memory glut. Operating profit down 56%. Oops.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Unsurprised

That's been done before which is why there are only 3-4 memory vendors now. They are all massive, so flooding the market and selling below cost isn't going to drive anyone out of business anymore. They will however invite trade actions for dumping, which is illegal for this very reason. When there were 20 competitors it was easy to fly under the radar, but no longer.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Unsurprised

It can be more expensive to leave fabs idle than to overproduce and sell at a loss - so long as the loss you make selling them is less than the amortization on the $10+ billion fab.

And there are so few competitors now that oversupply isn't causing memory makers to lose money like they used to, now they still make money just a lot less than they do when in undersupply.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Unsurprised

Not sure why the Reg continues to misunderstand how memory markets (and basic economics) work and keep writing stories claiming Samsung's falling profit is to due to "crappy demand" for memory chips. It is due to oversupply causing low prices. I'll bet they are selling more gigabytes of flash and RAM than ever before, demand is fine.

I don't know but it's been said, Amphenol plugs are made with lead

DougS Silver badge

Re: keeping swappable spares in stock might make sense

If you're buying refurbished parts you probably need to buy two so you WILL have a spare on hand, since that part refurbished by unknown means may not be as reliable as the already installed parts are.

DougS Silver badge

Re: keeping swappable spares in stock might make sense

No. The mere act of having a spare in stock prevents it from breaking.

I'm pretty sure this was proven to be part of quantum mechanics, similar to how observation collapses the wave function and a watched pot never boils.

DougS Silver badge

Testing testing testing

I always tell clients that they need to schedule regular tests of any redundancy (both physical and logical) they depend on, because the tests done once when things are installed right before going into production aren't sufficient. ESPECIALLY where software is concerned i.e. clusters, but hardware tests of redundancy where feasible is a good practice if you are already taking down the hardware for regular patches, configuration changes, etc.

Some are smart enough to schedule the time, others aren't. You can only tell them, you can't make them perform the tests regularly.

When I've worked with HP blades before they seemed very good about reporting module failure, so I'm surprised that failed power supply wasn't alerted previously. Or perhaps it was and it was sitting in someone's queue ("no need to rush on this because it still has power")

Having the ability to have a lot of power supplies, of different types, to meet a wide range of needs is nice but the monitoring needs to be able to tell you how much redundancy is left so replacement can be properly prioritized.

DougS Silver badge

Re: So why did it have a dead power supply?

Well at least that protects against failure of the power supply. More than a few data centers in the US don't have redundant circuits to the individual cabinets. Still should have two separate cords though, so accidentally unplugging the wrong cord from the PDU doesn't kill both PSUs.

DougS Silver badge

So why did it have a dead power supply?

Did the DoD not think this critical router was worth having a spare power supply on site so they were waiting for Cisco to show up with a replacement? Was it not properly monitored so he only found out it had a dead power supply after? Or did he know had a dead one, but was not authorized to touch it, and whoever who was authorized was not available on site yet?

it doesn't do much good to have redundant hot swap power supplies if you knowingly let a device operate with a dead one. Maybe they need three power supplies to handle such a scenario!

DoH! Secure DNS doesn't make us a villain, Mozilla tells UK broadband providers

DougS Silver badge

Yep

The moment I heard about this I knew they were really missed because it will curtail their ability to sell data on their users if people's DNS queries are hidden from their view.

I'm surprised they didn't come out against browser plans to do 'HTTPS everywhere' since that's even worse for them. Or maybe they did and I missed it?

Front-end dev cops to billing NSA $220,000 for hours he didn't work

DougS Silver badge

I doubt NSA secure sites are cubical farms

They want to eliminate accidental glances at classified material. I'll bet there are a bunch of small offices, or at at least the cubicals have high walls and doors.

People probably don't have any incentive to rat out slackers on a big contracting project. I know I wouldn't ever do so unless I was directly asked "how often do you see Bob around?" There's no gain to doing so and as I said you might be wrong because you don't know what the guy is doing. Even if you see him leaving with a backpack or bike helmet or whatever making you believe he's coming in at 10am and leaving at 2pm you don't know if he's splitting his time at another site or maybe comes in at night when you aren't there to work with a team in another time zone.

If you're right about him you get nothing except management (and possibly many others eventually) knowing you're a snitch, if you're wrong they know that about you plus that you have poor judgment for jumping to conclusions. Why would I ever inform on a slacker employee, and if I was slacking why would anyone ever inform on me? That only happens with full time employees where they have some stake in the company, or are angling for a promotion/bonus. It makes no sense if you are a contractor.

DougS Silver badge

That assumes whoever is signing his timesheet has access to the records of card-in/card-out times. When I'm consulting I often have someone who has no idea what I'm doing signing my timesheets - it might be a secretary or a manager in charge of stuff I have nothing to do with (because he signs all the contractor timesheets)

Even if it is someone I'm interacting with that doesn't mean they'd be able to verify my hours - if they didn't remember seeing me at my desk after lunch the last few days is that because I never came back in after lunch, because I was stuck in meetings all afternoon, or because I was in the bathroom when he happened to walk by? There is a lot of variation in work output, so someone who works half as many hours might get as much done as someone who is working overtime every week.

Only a true micromanager would be able to know that the timesheets they are signing are wrong.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Subcontractor / integrator ripoff

The labor rates billed by a subcontracting firm are always 2-3x the rate of the actual worker.

That's not true at all. It depends on how you get the job. For employees of the subcontractor, yes that will probably be true. If they have to find a contractor themselves because they don't have a particular skill in-house they won't be able to take a cut that large, but it will still be healthy.

I've always arranged my gigs myself, which this guy may have done here if he knew people in charge of the projects he was hired for. I'll bet once you've been on a few NSA projects and you're good you probably have a lot of contacts so you aren't forced to go through the subcontractors to find them for you. I arrange with them what I want to be paid, and they tell the subcontracting company "this is what DougS gets" and arrange separately for what the subcontractor will get. That's the difference between the subcontractor locating the necessary skill and the client locating the necessary skill.

I'm not always privy to the amounts they are paying the subcontractor but I have been often enough that I know they are getting about $10 or $15 a hour off my contracts - it is corp to corp so it is 100% profit for them with only the overhead of forwarding my invoices upstream, and they don't pay me until they get paid so they aren't incurring any float either.

DougS Silver badge
FAIL

Huh?

The NSA wasn't doing any of that. It was simply looking at the times he carded in and out of a secure facility where ALL his work had to be done. There was no working from home for him.

Not sure what you're on about here, the NSA does some shitty things to be sure but they didn't need to violate the privacy of this guy in any way, let alone that of his family, to uncover his scheme. I guess you're in favor of people stealing from the government because you appear to think a guy who lied about working $220K of hours he didn't work was done somehow done wrong by the NSA!

Get rekt: Two years in clink for game-busting DDoS brat DerpTrolling

DougS Silver badge

You gotta give him credit

He chose a very accurate screen name on Twitter!

Oz watchdog claims Samsung's leak-proof phones ad campaign doesn't hold water

DougS Silver badge

Re: Galaxy S7 owner

Your sample size is one. I had my iPhone 6S plus dunked in a sink for several minutes without realizing it (girlfriend's niece knocked it in while she was "doing the dishes") and it got rained on a bit a few times, and it survived just fine (even though it wasn't even IP rated) Just because I had no issues doesn't mean everyone else should have felt safe getting theirs wet. If my experience was mirrored with everyone the 6S plus would have had an IP rating, since it didn't obviously not everyone had the same luck.

A truly waterPROOF phone would be rated under ISO 22810:2010 like watches, Apple rates the Apple Watch under that standard to 50 meters fresh or salt. I'm sure someone would be claiming the same for a phone if they were building phones that were truly waterproof. Not sure it would matter other than people wanting to bring their phone into the ocean for Instagram selfies but then at least Samsung could use that ad copy in Australia without getting in trouble.

As for dropping out of your back pocket into a toilet. Ewww! I don't think I'd be able to use the phone again, no matter how well cleaned. I'd consider that a justification for immediate replacement!

DougS Silver badge

My only use for water resistance in my phone

Is to not worry about it getting wet in the rain. I have it mounted on my handlebars when I go on long bike rides, and during summers in the midwest it isn't that uncommon to be caught in pop up thunderstorms. I check the radar when I see dark clouds forming but sometimes the rain develops faster than I can turn around and get back home. I used to carry a sandwich bag in my saddlebag so I could pop my phone in that and stick it away in my saddlebag if it started to rain. Now I just let it rain on the phone and save the time I'd waste putting it away when I could be pedaling furiously those last few miles hoping to beat the real downpour. Same applies if I'm outside and get rained on, I don't have to worry about my phone getting wet in my pocket anymore.

I'd probably not be unduly worried around a pool - it may not be rated for going 6 feet deep or for chlorine but I doubt that slight extra pressure would be enough to get in the insides wet if you quickly retrieve it and dry it off. But I sure wouldn't tempt fate by having it on my stomach like that guy in the Samsung ad (and getting a weird tanline not to mention getting it all gross with sunblock...) if I'm floating on a pool. It doesn't help at all in other bodies of water, because if you drop it off a boat you probably won't find it again even if it was 100% waterproof. Lots of farm runoff around here in the midwest, so zero visibility underwater and probably not smart to open your eyes underwater anyway e.g. farm chemicals like herbicides and pesticides.

Crikey, that's FAST: China clocks 84 pulsars in 2 years using world's largest radio telescope

DougS Silver badge

Re: In one way pulsars are not the great hope they used to be

Probably someone who didn't like your AGW comment at the end.

How do we stop facial recognition from becoming the next Facebook: ubiquitous and useful yet dangerous, impervious and misunderstood?

DougS Silver badge

Re: Facial recognition itself isn't bad

That issue may happen regardless - i.e. cops might be more likely to think "yeah he looks like the guy on the wanted poster" if the suspect is black than white. Banning facial recognition doesn't eliminate bias, in many cases it will make it worse.

With facial recognition it is possible to put rules in place. For example they could require that the software only put forth a match when there is less than 1% chance of a false positive. Now that might drive the false negative rate to 20% and they'll miss a lot of suspects, you'd need to balance the two. But whatever metrics they choose if they enforce them then there won't be any bias by race. If the software performs better for some and worse for others then the chances of catching a suspect who is one of the "worse for others" will be less because their false negative rate would be higher. Which will cause the police to put pressure on the developers to fix that shortcoming and make it work equally well across all races.

DougS Silver badge

Re: Facial recognition itself isn't bad

Facial recognition advertisements require only that you have eyes, while beacons require 1) you are carrying a phone that supports them 2) it has bluetooth enabled 3) it is running an app that can interpret them.

It can't be trigged by paying with Apple Pay (which uses NFC not bluetooth) so that test must have involved running an app of some sort. i.e. you would have to deliberately opt in.

DougS Silver badge

Facial recognition itself isn't bad

It is the storage and widespread use of facial matching that makes it terrible. Its fine on an iPhone, since the data it uses to match your face is stored in a secure area of the phone and never leaves the phone (if you backup and restore a phone via iCloud, you have to re-train it recognize you) An Android phone that did similar and made sure Google couldn't get their dirty paws on your picture would also be fine.

The terrible thing is when companies/governments that have a picture of your face along with name (i.e. Facebook, DMV, customs) use it for uses you never intended and have no control over, like Facebook trying to tag you in pictures you didn't post - or maybe even aren't on Facebook - or governments using it for surveillance and tracking your every move.

No doubt if Google has your photo and matching name they'll be wanting to set up cameras in meatspace for Minority Report like maximally invasive advertising that will shout at you as you walk by "hey DougS, you searched for jeans 31 days ago, come on in to Eddie Bauer and check out our selection of jeans, if you buy in the next 30 minutes we'll give you 20% off!"

Finally in the UK: Apollo 11 lands... in a cinema near you

DougS Silver badge

Re: Amazing...

Yep. Conspiracies like "who shot JFK" can have their secrets kept if only a handful of people were involved. Conspiracies like "we didn't go to the Moon" are impossible because thousands of people can't keep a secret. I doubt you could get them to keep it secret for a year, let alone 50.

Not to mention that if Russia even suspected the slightest chance it was faked, they would have made sure to fly something over the site in the early 1970s and take pictures exposing the lie. The mileage the Soviet propaganda machine could have got out of that would be worth almost any expense.

DougS Silver badge

What will moron "Moon deniers" like you do

When China or India or a commercial enterprise like Blue Origin is preparing to visit the Moon and puts a satellite into low orbit with high resolution cameras to pick the best landing spot. And incidentally takes high resolution pictures of the landing site, complete with lander base, flag and rover - with tracks and footprints still visible if the resolution is high enough since there is no erosion. Well maybe a little from solar wind but not enough to wear away the footprints in only 50 years.

DougS Silver badge

"Accidentally switched?"

Moon rocks are rare and valuable, it was deliberately switched and ended up in the possession of a former employee...

Google's Fuchsia OS Flutters into view: We're just trying out some new concepts, claims exec

DougS Silver badge

Re: Since Google invented it

Yes, I was talking about Google inventing their own search, rather than buying the tech elsewhere as they have with all their other successful and/or long lasting products.

It is pointless to argue about who created a product category. Who invented the "PC", was it IBM, was it Apple, was it Altair? Altair brought it to the ultra geek hobbyist, then Apple brought it to the mass consumer market, then finally IBM (and Microsoft) brought it to the world. Regardless of other "search" applications, Google is the one who brought it to the world to the extent that it became a verb. Nobody ever said "I'll have to altavista that", let alone "I'll have to ask Jeeves".

DougS Silver badge

Since Google invented it

Rather then purchased it, it is obviously going to be one of those Google projects that stays in beta for a few years, then gets axed with little fanfare. The only thing Google invented themselves that survived in the long term is search. All the rest of their long lived offerings like advertising, Android, Maps, etc. they bought.

We are shocked to learn oppressive authoritarian surveillance state China injects spyware into foreigners' smartphones

DougS Silver badge

Re: They can't make you bring your own personal phone or laptop.

I have no problem using my personal phone for work (i.e. receiving work related calls on it) since I've ALWAYS done that and have refused any attempts to have me carry a second phone, but I'm not bringing it overseas and having it subject to a search let alone spyware installation. I'd set up a number via skype, rent a burner phone while I'm there and tell work to call me via that skype number. Then I'll turn in my charges for the burner phone rental and skype bill as expenses when I return.

I'll tell them that's what I plan to do ahead of time - if they don't approve then I'll quit the day I was scheduled to leave on the trip and leave them screwed and scrambling to find someone else to do whatever it was I was supposed to travel for.

DougS Silver badge

Then you make sure it is a device owned by your employer, so it becomes their problem when you return. They can't make you bring your own personal phone or laptop.

DeepNude's makers tried to deep-six their pervy AI app. Web creeps have other ideas: Cracked copies shared online as code decompiled

DougS Silver badge

Re: This might be a good thing

Well by the time the 4 year olds are 14 where today's parents are worried their teens are sexting, maybe 2029's parents of teens will figure there's no point to worrying about whether they share real naked pictures since everyone will be able to download a simple app on their phone to nudify them anyway.

More households invite creepy smart speakers indoors: Arch-slurper Google top dog for Q1

DougS Silver badge

Re: I think it is more they don't understand

Well to be fair if someone told me 20 years ago the amount of personal information and tracking that the average person would face in 2019, I'd have told them they need to lay off the conspiracy theories and quit viewing 1984 as a documentary.

It is a more difficult task to explain this to people in a way that doesn't make them think you be a loon.

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