* Posts by User McUser

538 posts • joined 6 May 2011

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Vegemite tries to hijack Qantas name-our-planes competition

User McUser
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Re: Bruce

Rule One? - NO COPTERS!

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WannaCrypt 'may be the work of North Korea' theory floated

User McUser
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Re: Naive Question

Usually it's because some program requires IE 6 to operate correctly; Windows 7 shipped with IE 8 and (AFAIK) it can't be back-leveled/downgraded.

You could of course run those apps in XP Mode, but that merely contains the XP in a VM rather than eliminating it entirely.

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So your client's under-spent on IT for decades and lives in fear of an audit

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Wait what?

Recently, a client of mine went through an ownership change. The new owners, appalled at how much was being spent on IT, decided that the best path forward was an external audit. The client in question, of course, is an SMB who had been massively under-spending on IT for 15 years, and there [was] no way they were ready for – or would pass – an audit.

So the new owners were appalled at how *much* was spent because the SMB had *underspent* on IT for 15 years? Surely that should be "appalled at how *little* was being spent on IT" because otherwise it sounds like a marketing drone overheard a conversation between two techs and made up a story to headline a not-quite-but-sort-of "news" article?

This article is sponsored by HPE.

Oh, I see. Never mind then.

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It's been two and a half years of decline – tablets aren't coming back

User McUser
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Buy another? Who needs one at all?

A while ago they gave us all iPads at work (because "iPads" I guess? TBH I'm not really sure why we got them.) I booted it up, signed into my Apple account, turned it off and put it on my desk where it has remained completely unused for over two years now.

I see no reason to bother with it - the company already provided me with an iPhone that runs exactly all of the same software as the iPad and does so in a form factor that fits in my pocket and works when I'm away from the WiFi. For any situation where I need to do real work (or just need more screen real estate) my dual monitor PC is vastly superior in every conceivable way.

Whatever niche it is that tablet devices fill is not one that I have ever encountered. At no time have I ever said "Gosh, if only I had a tablet device right now! This [smart-phone/laptop/desktop] just isn't cutting it."

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Linux Mint-using terror nerd awaits sentence for training Islamic State

User McUser
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Low tech

[The flash disks] contained military manuals for guided missiles, which Ullah was said to have been preparing to translate for the Islamic State terrorist organization

[...]

“This is just the sort of information that may have helped people involved in planning devastating, low technical level attacks on crowded places as we have seen in other cities across the world,” added [Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Commander Dean Haydon]. (Emphasis added.)

So guided missiles are low tech now?

And while we're on the subject, who needs help planning the "drive a large vehicle into a crowd" type of terrorist attack? Seems like everything you need to know is in the description.

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Sneaky 'fileless' malware flung at Israeli targets via booby-trapped Word docs

User McUser
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Well, we'll look for the house with no numbers.

So couldn't one just terminate any processes that doesn't correlate to (with?) files on the disk?

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Reg reader offered £999,998 train ticket from Cambridge to Horley

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Boffin

Well, *I* could be bothered.

We can't be bothered adjusting for inflation, currency fluctuations and whatever other processes might be necessary to cobble this numerical comparison into something remotely resembling anything other than a back-of-a-beermat chuckle, but we're pretty sure that, had Andrew purchased the ticket, he would in some way or another be the equal of Armstrong and Aldrin.

USD$61 in 1973 is, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics' CPI Inflation Calculator about USD$350 in 2017.

GBP£138.88 is currently USD$178.25.

So the train ticket is roughly half as expensive (per second) as the Apollo program was.

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Samsung Smart TV pwnable over Wi-Fi Direct, pentester says

User McUser
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Unhappy

Nobody, but that won't stop them.

Hopefully, your television will last 10 years, but your computer needs to be changed every 2 or 3 years. Why joint both in a single equipment?

Probably because they want to sell you a new TV every 2 or 3 years instead of every 10.

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Lyrebird steals your voice to make you say things you didn't – and we hate this future

User McUser
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Go

One upside to this...

Finally I can have a computer that sounds like Majel Barrett!

But that should be the only legal use of this software.

OK, maybe also William Daniels for my talking car.

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We're spying on you for your own protection, says NSA, FBI

User McUser
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Facepalm

Re: Spoiler Alert - It's a lot

I'm so sorry that my transpositional typographical error has ruined your otherwise perfect day. Please accept my sincerest apologies.

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User McUser
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Unhappy

Spolier Alert - It's a lot

The intelligence agencies claim that it affects very few US citizens and so Congress has persistently asked what that number is: how many US citizens are included in the 702 database?

The US House Judiciary Committee first asked that question a year ago – April 2016. There is still no answer.

I think we can safely assume that if it were a small number, say 100,000 or fewer, that they would have already told us the number because 100K out of 350M is a trivial amount (0.03%). So we must therefore assume that the number must be fairly large; millions or tens of millions at least.

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30,000 London gun owners hit by Met Police 'data breach'

User McUser
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A large part of firearms security is through obscurity

Meanwhile in the US, a large part of firearms security is owning more firearms.

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Why Firefox? Because not everybody is a web designer, silly

User McUser
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Re: Spinning plates

You know who really likes spinning plates?

People paid to spin plates.

Windows is an extremely troublesome piece of software - just this week I'm having to deal with our Windows clients ignoring Group Policy rules for no apparent reason. If it worked correctly the first time and every time then I'd be out of a job.

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Regulate This! Time to subject algorithms to our laws

User McUser
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Headmaster

No, no they don't.

Some laws stop us taking each other's stuff (property, liberty, lives)

Whoa, slow down there fellow - laws do NOT stop anyone from doing anything.

Murder and theft have been officially illegal for at least 4,100 years that we know of[1] and yet stuff still gets stolen and people are still murdered every single day in every single country on the planet. Laws merely establish a fixed and uniform punishment for specific acts so that everyone knows ahead of time what the consequences are should they be caught committing one of said acts.

While some people *might* weigh the punishment against the crime and choose not to murder their coworker or steal that shiny-shiny from the jewelry store, there are plenty of other people who don't perform such calculus, or reach a different conclusion, and thus steal and murder as they please.

It would be more appropriate to say that laws discourage us from taking each other's stuff.

[1] The "Code of Ur-Nammu" dates to ~2100-2050 BCE and specifies punishment for (among other crimes) murder, robbery, adultery and rape. Spoiler alert - the penalty for all of them is death.

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Overcharge customers, underpay the serfs. Who else but Uber (allegedly)

User McUser
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Joke

What's next for Uber?

I've obtained a leaked Uber document outlining upcoming new rules for their drivers. Here are some of the highlights!

-Drivers to be paid in script, which can only be used at the Uber Company Store.

-"Dead Peasant" insurance policies issued on drivers who are then routed by the Uber app along the most dangerous routes (based on traffic fatality statistics.)

- Must legally change their name to "Jeeves."

-Must now pay Uber for permission to drive their own car when "off duty." (Note: Company script is not an acceptable form of payment.)

-Lyft drivers must now be fought to the death (previously only "to incapacitation.")

-Must sign away rights to their "DNA and all works derived there from."

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Microsoft's new hardware: eight x86 cores, 40 GPU cores

User McUser
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Re: Yeah, but where can you buy hammocks?

Well, there's the Hammock Hut, that's on third. There's Hammocks-R-Us, that's on third too. You got Put-Your-Butt-There? That's on third. Swing Low, Sweet Chariot...

Matter of fact, they're all in the same complex; it's the hammock complex on third. [3F23]

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WWW daddy Sir Tim Berners-Lee stands up for end-to-end crypto

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Re: No, it's not settled

Sir Tim needs to assist with finding a way to allow law enforcement authorities to monitor Islamists and child porn purveyors.

First off, I reject the idea that people need to be "monitored." People should be assumed to be innocent unless you have reason to suspect otherwise. And the Government should not be allowed to go fishing for terrorists. But once you reasonably suspect that someone is a kiddie-fiddler or a terrorist, just infiltrate their end-points.

End-to-end encryption only protects the data in transit; once it arrives it's generally saved as plaintext. Surely the Government have RATs (Remote Access Trojan/Toolkit) which they can deploy to paedos and terr'sts' computers, after obtaining the proper warrant, either by social engineering or technical exploits.

We shouldn't allow the NSA to monitor everyone around the world in real-time, but this is a technical problem and a technical solution surely exists.

Knives must be sharp in order to cut things - if you dull a knife so that it won't cut people then it also won't cut bread. So you can't legislate a knife that cuts bread but doesn't cut people because the sharpness of a knife is the defining quality that make it useful.

Weak or backdoor enabled encryption is the same as a dull knife; it just won't cut it.

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BezosBux: Amazon gets into scrip game with Cash scheme

User McUser
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Re: Amazon Gift Cards

That's exactly what they're doing. From the article:

Once the barcode has been scanned, the cash is converted into an Amazon gift card that is credited to the customer's account.

I guess the difference is that they'll save a few cents by not using an actual physical gift card?

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D'oh! Amber Rudd meant 'understand hashing', not 'hashtags'

User McUser
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Re: Can't Stop the Encryption

So- what was your actual point?

You might be able to decrypt the data, but that doesn't mean you'll automatically be able to understand the message.

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User McUser
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Big Brother

Can't Stop the Encryption

You don't need a computer to do encryption; using computers is merely faster and easier.

I mean you could literally sit down with a copy of the AES specification, an ASCII or Unicode chart, a pencil and some paper and manually encrypt or decrypt any message you wanted as long as you had the appropriate keys and an understanding of the math. I don't know how long it would take, but you could do it.

You can force them to use an unencrypted protocol but you can't force them to send plaintext.

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Kremlin-linked hacker crew's tactics exposed

User McUser
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Re: "...and an endpoint exploitation kit called Scaramouche."

IDK about that but it *can* use Thunderbolt and Lightning ports, which is very very frightening.

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User McUser
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Re: Check is in the mail, SecureWorks

Assuming that Putin read the polls like everyone else, would he risk infuriating the likely next President of the United States – Hillary Clinton – by embarrassing her with an email leak that would amount to a pinprick?

Because it's a low-risk, high-reward opportunity?

Worst case for them, Russia angers a newly elected President Clinton who issues some sanctions. Best case for them, Russia appeases a newly elected President Trump who tells everyone what a great guy Putin is.

Clinton herself blamed her surprise defeat on FBI Director Comey’s decision to briefly reopen the investigation into whether she endangered national security by using a private email server as Secretary of State.

Don't forget, there were three wholly separate email "scandals" that got conflated into a single nebulous email problem in the minds of many voters.

There was the "Hillary used a private email server while Secretary of State" issue, there was the DNC hack-and-release issue, and finally there was the Anthony Wiener's secretary's laptop issue. The first two are entirely unrelated and the first and third are only tangentially related because the two parties had potentially corresponded with each other such that messages not contained in one set might have existed in the other (which was not the case.)

It was this last one, the nonsense with Anthony Wiener's secretary's email that was the October surprise from Director Comey, to which Secretary Clinton assigns much of the blame for her unexpected defeat.

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Alabama joins anti-web-smut crusade with mandatory opt-out filters

User McUser
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Meh

Re: Who wants to bet...

All those Catholics are going to burn in hell.

No, not really. Neither a fiery punishment nor a divine award await us; it just ends unceremoniously without so much as a "We Apologize For The Inconvenience."

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'Windows 10 destroyed our data!' Microsoft hauled into US court

User McUser
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Mushroom

Options

a Microsoft spokesperson said [...] "Customers had the option not to upgrade to Windows 10."

Oh yeah, I had that option. I said "No thank you" but you kept asking me every day anyways.

I disabled the start-up items but you kept restoring them.

I deleted the GWX folder but you kept putting it back.

I removed and blocked the updates but you kept putting out new ones.

FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR

ON EVERY COMPUTER I OWN

50 No's and a Yes means Yes.

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US Senate votes to let broadband ISPs sell your browser histories

User McUser
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Flame

Onerous

The FCC's regulations were not only onerous, but also singled out ISPs with overly restrictive privacy responsibilities.

Yes, NOT collecting and selling my browsing history and instead doing absolutely nothing is *such* a regulatory burden.

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As ad boycott picks up pace, Google knows it doesn't have to worry

User McUser
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Editorial Control

Note the emphasis on providing tools for advertisers to make the choices [...] rather than Google increasing resources or editorial control.

Because if they did exercise additional editorial control then they might lose their "Safe Harbor" status under the DMCA and similar laws. Remember, Google still pretends that they don't really run YouTube - it just magically runs itself and everyone/anyone else gets to be the gatekeepers.

Plus it would cost money to do otherwise, and we can't have that now can we.

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Google Fiber goes full Wizard of Oz: We're not in Kansas any more

User McUser
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Happy

Can confirm

Google Fiber's most useful legacy may be that it shone a spotlight on the lack of real competition in the ISP market and flagged up the fact that Big Cable can do much more than it is currently doing if it's in its interests.

When a FTTP service started becoming available in my neighborhood about a year ago, I noticed that my existing Comcast Internet suddenly and magically got faster both in terms of latency and sustained bandwidth.

I switched to the new guys anyway because fuck Comcast.

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US military's latest toy set: Record-breaking laser death star, er, truck

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Power Requirements

I was wondering about how they planned on powering this thing in the field and then I remembered this article from late 2014.

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Cold callers illegally sold Aussie farmers 1,700 years worth of printer ink

User McUser
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Why they didn't just hang up.

Sometimes you just don't, even if you think you should.

I remember once in the 1990s getting a cold call from a crafty sales person offering replacement windows (the glass kind, not the Microsoft kind.) As I was just 15 at the time I really had no interest in double-hung tilt-clean glazed whatevers but the guy on the phone kept talking and moving the conversation forward and next thing I know I'm giving him directions to my house so he can come over to inspect our current windows and give an estimate to replace them.

It all got sorted when my mother found out but to this day I can't explain why I didn't just hang up on the guy. It's as close to being hypnotized as I've ever been.

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State surveillance boom sparked by fear-mongering political populists, says UN

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Pirate

"disproportionate though understandable fear"

I reject the idea that the fear is understandable. The problem is that terrorists aren't really all that dangerous; statistically speaking, you are never going to be killed by one.

Look at it this way: According to "START" (Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism) at the University of Maryland, between 1995 and 2015 a total of 3,576 Americans were killed, world-wide, by terrorist/terrorism.

For comparison, the National Safety Council estimates that as many as 40,000 Americans died in car crashes in 2016 alone (up 6% from 2015.)

So if you're hundreds of times more likely to die driving to work than you are in a terrorist attack, why are people so afraid of terrorism but basically completely unafraid of driving?

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Uber blackballs 'Greyball' tool it used to deny rides to regulators

User McUser
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Alert

Re: "It seems that Uber and specifically its CEO are getting punished"

If two people meeting voluntarily for an activity that hurts no one can really be a "crime." Real crimes have a victim.

Except that hailing an Uber is hardly "two people meeting voluntarily"; Uber is a giant world-wide corporation that you asked to send someone 'round to pick you up and they chose who got to do it. *Your* actions may be voluntary but the driver got dispatched to pick you up and won't be driving for Uber much longer if he refuses to obey (meaning it isn't voluntary.)

And there is a victim - lawful Taxi companies and their employees to start and the rest of us later. It would be one thing if Uber was competitive on their merits, but they're "competitive" by straight-up undercutting prices such that they operate at a continual loss and by completely ignoring all of the laws and regulations on their industry. They aim to drive out (no pun intended) the existing Taxi companies and then hike prices up to profitable levels while presumably still treating their drivers like fungible tools. They pretend that they are "disruptive" but in reality they are "running unlicensed Taxis." By that logic my neighborhood drug dealer is "disrupting" the pharmaceutical industry when he sells heroin; all he needs is an app I guess?

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Video intercom firm Doorbird wants $80 for device password resets

User McUser
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Meh

Re: Because this process is attended to us with considerable effort,

Yes, that's a superb idea for something that is stuck on the outside of the house.

Pro tip - don't put the reset button on the part of the thing that's outdoors! Put that button on the inside parts where it will be safe.

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US military drone goes AWOL, ends up crashing into tree 623 miles away

User McUser
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Re: Stryker?

Over Macho Grande?

No. I don't think I'll ever get over Macho Grande...

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The Psion returns! Meet Gemini, the 21st century pocket computer

User McUser
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Re: So close, so very very close...

FYI, I emailed them and asked why there is no rear camera; here is their response:

This is in fact a very interesting point for us, that we discussed in length before launching the campaign.

The problem is that a good camera lens adds a certain depth to the device.

That’s why on today’s mobile phones, the camera is usually the thickest part of the phone.

We did not want to compromise the Gemini’s clean design and as a result we kept the back camera out of the specs.

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User McUser
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Unhappy

So close, so very very close...

This thing ticks all the boxes except for one - there's no camera on the back of the display, only a user-facing one!

I don't think I've ever used my user-facing camera before - I am not a "selfie" type of person - but I use the one on the back of the thing all the time. This seems like an oddly conspicuous omission...

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Softbank gros fromage: ARM will knock out a trillion IoT chips by 2040

User McUser
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Unhappy

Re: I really really want my shares back

I voted against the purchase, but alas my meager shares were insufficient to turn the tide.

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Your future boss? An employee-interrogating bot – it's an open-source gift from Dropbox

User McUser
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Two Truths and a Lie

"So, we don’t bother you for some period of time, because we can be pretty sure three sudos in a row, in the same context, are all you."

So the lesson here is to be sure and conceal your malicious activities alongside two legitimate tasks.

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FCC lops off red tape around small US ISPs, y'know, things like having to own up about connection speeds

User McUser
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Facepalm

Such a burden...

I mean you'd have to open your email, attach a spreadsheet, and then send it... Whew, I'm tired from just *thinking* about that.

Seriously, how hard or expensive could it possibly be to report this info? Any ISP worth a shit should already be tracking all of these things internally, so just fill out the FCC form and mail it in you twats.

Where's the indignant eye-roll icon?

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New Royal Navy Wildcat helicopters can't transmit vital data

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Black Helicopters

Alternative Angle

There's another spin on this - "New Navy Helicopters Hardened Against Network Based Attacks"

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Why I had to sue the FCC – VoIP granddaddy Dan Berninger

User McUser
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FAIL

[Plain Old Telephone Service] literally didn’t do anything different or new from 1934 to 1996, when the internet came along - there was no important new service. It didn’t add new value.

Of course it didn't[1], but that didn't stop people from launching OTT services.

Remember fax machines? They ran on top of the POTS lines and provided new value to an existing infrastructure. Ditto for modems that connected computers to BBSes and The Internet.

[1] Just kidding - it did plenty of innovation and investment. The two that spring immediately to mind are DTMF (aka "Touch-Tone Dialing") and Caller ID. Both are improvements to the POTS that occurred during the stated time frame that added new value. DTMF added value by allowing the Customer Service Phone Tree to exist, streamlining call routing, and Caller ID allows me to ignore people *much* more efficiently.

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

User McUser
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Joke

"Wizards Wanted"

[the] jobs page was titled "Wizards wanted," seemingly shutting out women.

Are women not allowed to be wizards?

If so, then someone should let Hermione know before she wastes any more of her time...

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The Register's guide to protecting your data when visiting the US

User McUser
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Devil

Tapes?

The CBP told The Register it reserves the right to check "computers, disks, drives, tapes, mobile phones and other communication devices, cameras, music and other media players, and any other electronic or digital devices."

Oh my, you can have fun* with this!

Step 1: Procure as many QIC-80 tapes (or whatever your favorite obsolete tape backup format is) as you can via eBay and the like. Make sure you have enough to catch CBP's attention but still fit easily in your carry-on baggage.

Step 2: Bulk erase said tapes with a very strong magnet. Really scramble that rust.

Step 3: Enter America; when asked "what's on the tapes?" look around nervously and then say "Nothing... Why?"

Step 4: Laugh your ass off as they cart them off to be "inspected" at Uncle Sam's expense.

*Fun levels may vary inversely with melanin levels.

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Roses are red, you're feeling blue, 'cos no one wants to watch VR telly with you

User McUser
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Angel

Friends live all over...

Maybe they want to watch a TV show with their pal, but said pal lives hundreds of miles away?

Or maybe their friend has a disability that makes it difficult or inconvenient to physically go places but they would still like to socialize with others?

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High tides: Boffins spy on dolphins baked on poisonous piscines

User McUser
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Coat

Re: Further study required!

(BTW, I could have done without the tales of reindeer-herders drinking deer piss. But I suppose it's about the same as them breaking out a case of Bud Light after a hard day's herding.)

Plus deer piss is cheaper because you can get it from under a buck.

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Hyperloop sueball noose-man launches tube-travel rival

User McUser
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Who keeps giving these people money?

See title.

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

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Go

Re: Sounds great

I think you're right - the best way to get things done in IT is to produce lots of lengthy reports. It never fails. The more reports, the more work gets done. Simples.

Don't forget about the all important committees, review boards, blue-ribbon panels, commissions, independent investigators, task forces, advisory groups, consultants, etc.

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Conviction by computer is go, confirms UK Ministry of Justice

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Unhappy

Prosecution Costs?!

Defendants persuaded to plead guilty online will automatically be issued [...] prosecution costs

And exactly what prosecution costs would those be m'ludd? The 1p worth of electricity the server uses processing the form submission?

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Russia (A) bans web porn as a 'bad influence' (B) decriminalizes domestic violence – or (C) all of the above?

User McUser
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there's a growing amount of evidence that pornography can be slightly detrimental to mental health in some cases

That's news to me. Care to provide some links to said evidence?

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Why don't you all just f-f-f-fade away, Kaspersky asks generation SocMed

User McUser
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Fee Structure Unclear

For US$1.99 a month you'll be able to back up all four.

So you pay $1.99/mo forever or they delete the backups?

Or do you pay $1.99 for each month's worth of Data you backup?

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

User McUser
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WTF?

How is this a problem?

The data that does exist (eg, fact checker website archives) is almost all copyright protected.

I don't see why that's a problem - they would not be republishing or distributing the copyrighted material, only analyzing it. Why should copyright enter into it at all?

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