* Posts by DougS

12863 posts • joined 12 Feb 2011

Sharp claims Hisense reverse-ferreted its US telly licence deal

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Same thing happened to RCA

Was a very respected brand name in the US for TVs and other CE gear. They were bought out and liquidated 30 years ago but still were at least somewhat respected through the time Thomson decided to divest it a decade ago, and now their TVs are considered Hisense level crap.

Curiosity drills into the watery origins of Mars

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Tridymite

Found in rocks that were partially melted? Like say from the impact of a decent sized meteor?

Essentially puzzling: Rubin's hype-phone ties up with… Sprint?

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Re: Then it's Essentially dead in the water.

It just shows that Sprint and Essential were equally desperate and were stuck with each other.

Uber board: We accept all recommendations. Any execs left to carry them out?

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Re: But if they go clean?

Uber isn't making money with their business, despite ripping off drivers and customers. They've lost billions so far. The money that's been made by those at the top is by getting all the attention to bring in additional rounds of VC money to finance their billions in losses, and cash outs by those at the top.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who feels ambivalent about them ripping off Sand Hill Road...

German police nick alleged admin of dark web gun sales site

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Wearing latex gloves

That would arouse suspicion. If he'd simply covered his fingertips with superglue it would obscure his prints and the mailman would be none the wiser.

IBM warns itself of possible outages in lab shift screw-up

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Re: extreme short term viewpoint

Good private equity = long term investment private equity

Bad private equity = short term investment private equity

i.e. the difference between Warren Buffett (Berkshire Hathaway is basically publicly traded private equity) and Carl Icahn.

Intel to Qualcomm and Microsoft: Nice x86 emulation you've got there, shame if it got sued into oblivion

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Re: 40 year old tech....

Actually Intel already had 64 bit support in shipping P4 CPUs when AMD announced Opteron/Athlon 64 and got Microsoft's buy-in.

Intel wanted to push everyone to Itanium to get 64 bits - first on servers, then workstations, eventually consumer PCs/laptops down the road, since it was fully patented and would be a legal monopoly with no pesky AMD nibbling at their heels. They had 64 bit support ready to go in the P4 in case they ran into issues, but the one thing they didn't foresee was Microsoft supporting an AMD developed 64 bit implementation. Because Microsoft said they'd only support one, it was too late and Intel had to scramble to implement AMD's version of 64 bits. Because Itanium didn't have that push behind it any longer, Intel's investment in it dried up and it is currently on its last version (contractual requirement with HP, who co-developed it with them)

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@520 - Sony v Bleemcast

AFAIK, that lawsuit revolved around copyright, not patents, so isn't applicable to this case.

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Re: No risk for Intel

Why would they be 'slapped early'. Intel's patents definitely hold for actual chip implementations, the only question is whether they also hold for software emulation of the chip. I wouldn't be surprised if Intel ends up winning the case, but if they don't it isn't going to be something that is shot down quickly.

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Re: East Texas

As the battle between Samsung and Apple in California shows, while East Texas may be the most patent holder friendly it isn't like the other districts will immediately quash any such lawsuits. We might be reading about Intel vs Microsoft with Judge Koh presiding in a couple years...

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Re: 40 year old tech....

The patents cover SSE and AVX specifically, and are the reason why AMD introduced their '3DNow!' instructions instead of SSE - Intel didn't grant them a patent license for SSE. When AMD introduced their 64 bit extension, obviously Intel needed access to that, so they signed a full cross license which is why AMD was able to support Intel's SIMD implementations of SSE and AVX and drop 3DNow!

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No risk for Intel

When Microsoft introduces the capability, Intel sues. Case spends a few years in trials and appeals, meanwhile adoption of Windows on ARM is very limited because of uncertainty about its headline capability of emulating x86 Win32 apps.

Even if Intel loses the court case eventually they get several more years of x86 being the only alternative for running Windows, and pocket billions as a result. If they end up having to pay Microsoft's court costs its chickenfeed compared the many millions of additional x86 CPUs they'll sell.

The real loser in all this would be Qualcomm, who would have the Snapdragon 835 ready to go for PC OEMs to install in low end Windows/ARM PCs, but have few takers. And potentially Apple, if they are planning to migrate the Mac to their ARM SoCs, without losing the ability for their customers to run Windows apps (it is unclear whether they want to do this, or whether losing the ability to run Windows apps is what has prevented it so far, but it is possible)

Who will save us from voice recog foolery from scumbags? Magnetometer!

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Re: Next version will use camera

No, it wasn't "invented by reality TV". It is the way that makes the most sense to hold the phone if you are talking on speaker. So long as I'm not around others, I'm always talking on speakerphone. Usually I put the phone down, but if I'm standing/walking I'm holding the phone out in front of me with the bottom facing me, because that's where the microphone is.

DIY self-driving cars are closer than they appear (and we're not talking about in the mirror)

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I support open source

But individuals should NOT have the right or ability to fuck with the software of an autonomous car!

Not without posting at least a $10 million bond to cover their liability - since obviously no insurance company is going to cover a DIY self driving car.

You know this net neutrality thing? Well, people really love it

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Beat me to it. Washington is run by lobbyists. They use talking points to convince people of one party or the other to back them to give them cover, but when they just plain can't, like with net neutrality, they'll still get their own way because they're buying off all the right people.

Whisky snobs scotched by artificial tongue

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Re: Holy s**t 10K-135K Euros a bottle

If you can't tell the difference, you shouldn't be spending 100K and up on a single bottle!

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Re: @AC

Perhaps you can tell vodkas apart, but unless you drink it straight, it doesn't matter. No way you can tell the difference when it is mixed with OJ or whatever.

Please do not scare the pigeons – they'll crash the network

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Re: @Grumpy, re: shooting pigeons...

Whether you want a permanent fix or something that will last for a month or two depends on whether the locale four hours away you were sent to has good nightlife - just make sure you re-fix it late enough that you have to stay the night.

Alphabet offloads bot businesses Boston Dynamics and SCHAFT

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Re: In other words

Alphabet's only source of income is advertising. Everything else they're involved in loses money. They're sort of like Microsoft in that regard, Microsoft makes tons of money via Windows, Windows Server, and Office, and loses money on everything else they've tried to expand into.

Donald Trumped: Comey says Prez is a liar – and admits he's a leaker

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Re: @AC ... Comey: Weird, but it doesn't matter.

His appearance was never going to provide the 'smoking gun' that changes things for either side. If there was something like that, it would have been leaked already.

But the investigation into Trump is constantly gathering steam, and now includes a group of financial analysts who investigate stuff like money laundering. They're going to be digging into Trump's overseas business affairs that he has gone to such great lengths to conceal and deflect. That's the sort of where smoking guns are found for a crooked businessman like Trump.

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He's not a spy

The FBI is America's police, the CIA is its spies.

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A pardon doesn't prevent a trial

It prevents the defendant from undergoing any punishment, but since the president's powers don't extend over the judiciary branch, if for example he pardoned Michael Flynn, they could still try Flynn in a court of law and find him guilty.

However, the pardon would remove the leverage the special prosecutor would have over Flynn to get him to roll over on Trump - it would be the threat of prison rather than the threat of a show trial that motivates him to sell out Trump. It would make Trump look REALLY guilty to do so, and guarantee nothing gets done in the next year quite possibly followed by a democratic landslide in 2018 as democrats would come out in force and republicans would be rather disillusioned about their president.

Human-free robo-cars on Washington streets after governor said the software is 'foolproof'

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This could backfire on them

All it takes is one child killed or crippled by an autonomous car driving around with a human behind the wheel (or without a wheel) and they'll set back the cause of autonomous cars by a decade.

Stupid states are competing to see who can have the most lax regulations to encourage development of the technology in their state, but only a foolish governor would call the software "foolproof" at this point! Hell, I'm not sure I'd consider any software "foolproof"...

Ex-NSA bod sues US govt for 'illegally spying' on Americans: We drill into 'explosive' 'lawsuit'

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Hannity is an idiot

Anything to distract from Trump's troubles I guess.

This guy suing is an obvious nutter. The FBI may do many things, but I've never heard of them tying someone to a tree! They have handcuffs, and vehicles, surely they'd lock him in the back seat if he didn't sit still for a search of his house. And pretty sure the FBI Director doesn't make promises to investigate stuff to an individual charged with crimes, I guess the voices in his head told him Comey promised.

Also, if he was serious he should have added to that list president Trump and former president Bush, as the president currently in charge of the illegal spying, and the president in charge when it originated!

20 Apple China staff collared for allegedly flogging customers' info

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Apple is probably still evaluating exactly which customer records were sold, and may not want to comment until they do. Plus they don't ever respond to El Reg anyway.

Live blog: Fired FBI boss spills the beans to US Senate committee

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Re: In private

There was a former national security guy from Bush's administration being interviewed last night, and he said he's been told nearly "nearly all" of that dossier has been confirmed by investigators. That's why Comey won't talk about it, that's part of the active investigation that is under Mueller's direction.

Now obviously this is 'fake news' or 'leaks' at this point, but if I was a Trump supporter I'd be getting really worried about now, even if Comey has afforded him a few talking points to distract from the noose being slowly tightened around the throats of Trump and his cronies. There's nothing he can do to stop the investigation now.

Those who disagree should visit Ladbrokes and lay a bet on Trump serving out his first time - as of yesterday it was an even money bet!

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Re: Trump had told him repeatedly he was doing a great job.

Read his account again. He started taking notes before Trump even took office, long before he knew he'd be a "disgruntled employee". And if he is, it is Trump's lying about him that made him disgruntled.

Most vulnerabilities first blabbed about online or on the dark web

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Many bugs never get CVEs

Apple is the only company I'm aware of (if there are others, let me know) that files a CVE for each individual bug, including all the ones they discover themselves. Many companies only file CVEs for externally discovered bugs, or file a single CVE for a whole module (i.e. one CVE for a dozen different browser vulnerabilities)

That makes it hard to compare, since if you have a single CVE for multiple bugs the time to fix is for the slowest bug of the bunch. And if internally discovered bugs are left out of the CVE system you don't know if they're just ignoring them until someone outside finds them. Yeah, stupid policy, but we've all heard of plenty of examples where that happened.

HPE to staff: 'We are permanently clipping your costs'

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Re: Banning work from home: same smokescreen as IBM

Yeah, that is a pretty stealthy way to dump those older workers, and come up with more "voluntary" resignations so they don't have to lay people off when they outsource more jobs.

Senator blows a fuse as US spies continue lying over spying program

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Re: We need another NSA leaker

If you're smart enough to hide your tracks and pin the blame on someone else, you're smart enough to hide your tracks and not do something extra that increases the chances you get caught (i.e. you can spoof SMTP, but it records the IP it came from, so unless the spoofer had access to Ms. Winner's NSA workstation taking that extra step would merely serve to expose him.

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We need another NSA leaker

Hopefully one that's smarter than Reality Winner, who doesn't use their work account to email a journalist!

Pop-up Android adware uses social engineering to resist deletion

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Re: No other options but to press "OK"

The guy who writes the malware and the guy who distributes it usually aren't the same.

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Re: No other options but to press "OK"

Never thought of it that way, but it makes a certain kind of sense. They don't want to waste their time trying to talk a skeptical target into it. They want a credulous target who is dumb enough to believe anything.

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Re: No other options but to press "OK"

There's a special kind of horrific English that spammers and malware authors use that's distinct from the horrific English that some native English speakers use. It is impossible to confuse the two.

If they'd just advertise on Craigslist in the US or UK for someone with an English degree to correct their spelling and syntax, they'd probably have a lot higher success rate in getting past what little skepticism the typical user has (yes, I know that misspellings in spam are deliberate to avoid filters)

I wonder if they have better results for infecting their countrymen (Chinese or Russian, most likely)

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So that helps, what, 1 or 2% of the user base?

The harsh reality of Apple's augmented reality toolset ARKit: It's an incredible battery hog

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Re: Improves with age?

Another reason to go vertical would be to keep what they're doing for themselves. If you buy something 'off the shelf' it is easy for the competition to match you step for step. If you design your own, it takes them longer to do so - for example, look at how far ahead Apple's custom ARM cores are versus everyone else's.

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Re: Makes sense

Well, at least for the phones coming out this fall and later that will have the Apple designed GPU with the AR special sauce.

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Makes sense

It uses the GPU for most of the computation, so it will drain the battery just like a game would. But that's hardly a disadvantage for the use of AR - that would be like saying having cellular data capability is a disadvantage, because LTE drains battery much more quickly than wifi. That may be true, but if you don't have wifi where you are, your only other option would be to not have internet.

US spook-sat buzzed the International Space Station

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Re: Maybe ...

Now we know what the .iss domain was for the hackers who attacked the DNC!

HPE ignored SAN failure warnings at Australian Taxation Office, had no recovery plan

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Problems arise when the clueless write RFPs

I don't know if HPE was sole source here, but I'll bet it was a competitive bid situation, and they didn't include stuff the RFP didn't call for. They probably had some people say "hey what about doing proper DR testing" etc. but the bid manager doesn't want to include that because if you come up with a high bid that's rejected they get no bonus. Better to have a smaller bonus selling a cheaper solution that's bought, even if it isn't the right solution. The team selling the solution gets paid when the deal is done, and doesn't suffer the consequences if it all goes tits up a year or two down the road.

It is rather like the perverse incentives for realtors. I see a lot of houses that will go on the market and be sold within a week around my neighborhood. To me that says they were underpriced, but that's in the realtor's interest - and the realtor is the "expert" in the market who will recommend what price you should list at. They'd rather put a house on the market and have it sell quickly so they can get on with listing/selling other houses, than have a house on the market for three months that gets shown to 20 prospective buyers before someone is willing to buy at a 5% higher price. The realtor is happy to give up the 5% higher commission in exchange for a quick transaction that lets them move on to selling more underpriced houses per year, but you as the homeowner don't want to give up that 5% which represents tens of thousands of dollars...

Vxers exploit Intel's Active Management for malware-over-LAN

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Re: I have a feeling that ...

It seems whenever a new class of vulnerabilities is found, security researchers all start looking closely at it, and a flood of vulnerabilities follows. The trickle is just starting, the flood begins in let's say September or so. Better not plan on any triple digit uptimes for any servers you manage, you're going to be updating the firmware a lot more often than that!

Australia to float 'not backdoors' that behave just like backdoors to Five-Eyes meeting

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Re: Quandry in the making....

Maybe covfefe is his encryption key he typed into a tweet by mistake?

Apple appears to relax ban on apps fetching, running extra code – remains aloof as always

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Re: Ah Bisto..

How do you figure that? The only code it could insert is stuff like Javascript that shouldn't (unless there's a security bug in Apple's Javascript interpreter) be able to do anything nasty. Ditto for other frameworks like Lua. It isn't as though they're going to allow downloading arbitrary .so files and dynamically loading them into the executable.

This change seems rather common sense, because you've always been able to execute arbitrary Javascript - you point Safari at a site containing it!

Hyperloop One teases idea of 50-minute London-Edinburgh ride

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Sudden loss of vacuum

Like say with a small explosive device that would inevitably be smuggled on by terrorists at some point? At least if you blow a hole in an airplane you have a chance for a quick decent to 10kft followed by an emergency landing. A sudden loss of vacuum at 700 mph might not leave enough to allow identifying the bodies.

The only way I can see this being feasible is it if is all underground - i.e. combine it with his 'Boring' company. Not that I think THAT is practical, but it is way more practical than public transit at 700 mph in vacuum sealed tubes!

Apple gives world ... umm ... not much new actually

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Re: Back to the 90s

Well the Mac Pro coming in 2018 should fix that, but this is perhaps more a symptom of the Pro market being such a small segment. Granted, they lag behind sometimes by not updating their lines to the latest CPUs, but with Intel not even squeezing 5% more performance between generations, what are you really missing out on?

These days, what percentage of people ever upgrade the RAM in their PC or laptop? A low single digit percentage, I'll bet. Time was when you could replace CPUs in laptops, but I doubt there are many such laptops anymore. Granted, the pros are the ones most likely to want to do this, so I'm not really defending Apple but they've always pushed in this direction so its like its out of character for them.

I still think they might start using their ARM SoCs in the Mac line - an A10 with a laptop style power budget could beat any Intel CPU with an equivalent power budget, and the A11 should be even better. With Microsoft now supporting full Windows on ARM, and building in x86 emulation for Win32 apps, I think they really go that way next year.

No hypersonic railguns on our ships this year, says US Navy

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Re: So get rid of the barrel!

Or you could have a bunch of barrels that can be rotated into place after one is destroyed. Sort of like a revolver. More expensive? Sure, but the defense contractor won't mind on a cost plus bid!

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@phuzz

It isn't the acceleration in G's destroying the barrel, but the Mach 7 exit velocity. Artillery exits at a much slower speed.

NSA leaker bust gets weirder: Senator claims hacking is wider than leak revealed

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@Stoneshop

Actually she didn't "smuggle it out". She scanned it and emailed it from her work computer!

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Re: curiouser and curiouser

The voting machines don't need to be online to be hacked. If you send the person responsible for maintaining the county's machines an 'update' from the 'vendor' and get them apply it. Or maybe infect USB sticks they might later use to transfer the votes off the machines to however they upload the results to the state.

We should be using paper ballots and doing random recounts of a couple percent as a mandatory audit, but we don't so you don't even need to change the votes on the voting machines to change the results of an election. They don't really have much of a security focus, and because states and not the federal government are responsible there will always be some easier targets. The electoral college keeps it safer than it otherwise would be, since you probably need to compromise multiple states, so it isn't easy, but it isn't impossible.

As for registration, if you want to create distrust all you need to do is wipe thousands of republicans from the rolls in a key state or two, and when they go to vote they find they aren't on the list. Once it is determined it is basically only republicans affected and Fox News and Breitbart get hold of that, then all hell breaks loose and republicans don't trust the result. They'll assume it was crooked Hillary responsible somehow, even if it happens in a republican state, and by the time it is determined Russians are to blame all those low information Breitbart readers will "know" it was Hillary and assume the Russia blame was concocted by President Clinton's administration. Basically the "election fraud" stuff that Trump was banging on about for most of October as his prepared excuse for losing.

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