* Posts by Thoguht

195 posts • joined 10 May 2011

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How many times can Microsoft kill Mobile?

Thoguht

Re: Microsoft has already "shown what follows"

Makes sense, they already make far more money from Android than they ever did with their own mobile platforms.

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Home Sec Amber Rudd: Yeah, I don't understand encryption. So what?

Thoguht
Trollface

Re: Rudd

Has she remembered hydroxic acid? That should definitely be banned too.

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Forget the 'simulated universe', say boffins, no simulator could hit the required scale

Thoguht

Surely all the paper is saying is that you can't adequately simulate quantum phenomena using "classical computational resources", i.e. non-quantum computers. So what if you had quantum computers to run the simulation?

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Compsci degrees aren't returning on investment for coders – research

Thoguht

£3K a year more?

When I got my first programming job, I was paid £100 a year more because I had a compsci degree.

Mind you, that was a few years ago now...

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Weird white dwarf pulsar baffles boffins as its pulsating pattern changes over decades

Thoguht

Re: Proving that whenever you think you've reached the limit of how strange the universe is

Yes, as Isaac Asimov is reputed to have once said, "The most exciting phrase to hear in science is not 'Eureka!' but rather, 'hmm... that's funny...'"

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Giant frikkin' British laser turret to start zapping stuff next year

Thoguht
Headmaster

>drones, to you and I

Oh for fuck's sake, how difficult is it to tell the difference between a subject and an object? If you're going to pretend to be a journalist, at least have a rudimentary grasp of the language you're writing in.

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Astroboffins map 845 galaxies in glorious 3D, maybe dark matter too

Thoguht

Re: What does God like?

Nobody mention the horsehead nebula, please.

Oh, damn.

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That virtually impossible classic compsci P vs NP problem is virtually impossible, say boffins

Thoguht

Re: Small change

Quite so, such proofs I think are called non-constructive. So basically you prove that something is possible but without giving a concrete example. Proving that P=NP and creating an algorithm for converting each member of NP into its corresponding member of P may well end up as two different tasks entirely. But at least you'd know it would be P...

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China's cybersecurity law grants government 'unprecedented' control over foreign tech

Thoguht

Information gleaned might easily be exploited by CNITSEC in furtherance of its intelligence operations, Recorded Future claims.

No, that would be a fact, not a claim.

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Privacy-focused search engine DeepSearch slinks out of hiding

Thoguht

Re: Had a play

If it's currently only indexed 4% of its target sites, it might not even be fast by the time it's done all of them and a lot more people are using it.

And how do you test if it's private and safe? Search for "how to make bombs" and see if your front door gets kicked down eventually?

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Couple fires sueball at Amazon over faulty solar eclipse-viewing goggles

Thoguht

Re: Site for sore eyes.

You're only buying something from Amazon if it says "Sold by Amazon" in the listing. Otherwise you aren't. Actually in a lot of department stores these days many of the counters are actually concessions, so again the store owner isn't the seller.

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NYPD head of IT doubles down on Windows smartphone idiocy

Thoguht

Assuming they wrote the mobile code in C#, then by using Xamarin they could at least salvage much of the apps' business logic.

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Is it possible to control Amazon Alexa, Google Now using inaudible commands? Absolutely

Thoguht

Re: at a frequency outside of the range of human hearing

Funnily enough, the collective noun for a flying group of bats is "cloud".

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Hash of the Titan: How Google bakes security all the way into silicon

Thoguht

Re: Dear Google

You don't want Google to do that? Fine, no problem, all you have to do is never use Google, Chrome, Android or YouTube ever again. Oh, and best ditch all your Chromecast and Nest kit too. And if you're really in tinfoil hat mode, get BUPA so you don't need to use the NHS.

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Thoguht

Same old same old?

So this Titan chip - it really just sounds like a standard secure element as used in smartcards/SIMs/etc. The only difference I can see is that it (apparently) uses Flash instead of EEPROM.

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Airbus issues patch to prevent A350 airliner fuel tanks exploding

Thoguht

Re: Brilliant!

The SR-71 Blackbird actually used its fuel as a coolant for the airframe leading edges and the avionics.

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Not another Linux desktop! Robots cross the Uncanny Valley

Thoguht

Carebots for the elderly?

And this from the nation that brought us Roujin Z.

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If Anonymous 'pwnd' the Daily Stormer, they did a spectacularly awful job

Thoguht

It's a shame your limited attention span only permitted you to read the first sentence of my post.

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Thoguht

If you're going to have free speech then unpopular speech needs to be protected just as much as popular speech (Voltaire and all that). If websites got shut down just because I didn't approve of them, there'd be no need for IPv6.

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Core-blimey! Intel's Core i9 18-core monster – the numbers

Thoguht

36 cores at 4.2 GHz?

No, it's 18 cores at 2.6GHz. You only get to the rarefied heights of 4+GHz when only a few of the cores are active.

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Re-identifying folks from anonymised data will be a crime in the UK

Thoguht

Companies and corporations are people (legal persons) too in the eyes of the law.

But really there will have to be lots of get-out clauses for this because otherwise it will hamstring all sorts of very nice people who are trying to keep us and our children safe.

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Sputtering bit-blasters! IBM's just claimed densest tape ever record

Thoguht

Re: Long live tape !

One of the main reasons tape isn't fashionable is its habit of being WORN (write once, read never).

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Thoguht

Re: Sputtering ...

The stuff that babies bring back up is not barium ferrite, it's barium rutherfordium ferrite (BaRfFe).

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Cassini captures pieces of Saturn’s rings

Thoguht

Titled?

...and the sloshing won’t happen without the magnetic field being titled.

That's Lord Magnetic Field to you, then.

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HMS Frigatey Mcfrigateface given her official name

Thoguht

Re: Cool 'warshipy' names

Shame Iain Banks is no longer around, he was good at warshipy names. I can just see it now - HMS No More Mr Nice Guy escorting HMS All Through With This Niceness And Negotiation Stuff.

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Set your alarms for 2.40am UTC – so you can watch Unix time hit 1,500,000,000

Thoguht

Re: Signed Integer

Why a signed integer? So you can represent dates before 1970.

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The life and times of Surface, Microsoft's odds-defying fondleslab

Thoguht

Re: Couldn't trust OEMs

Or the Acer Switch Alpha. A Surface clone for a much lower price and with a Core i5 too.

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Microsoft drops Office 365 for biz. Now it's just Microsoft 365. Word

Thoguht

Re: Inspire...

LibreOffice is great value for money (duh), but when using Calc I often find I need to write macros to do things that Excel can do out of the box. Sliding scales on charts, for example.

But really, coupling Windows and Office for home users like myself would be the one thing that would make me switch to Linux.

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Fast-spreading CopyCat Android malware nicks pennies via pop-up ads

Thoguht

Re: I feel retarded

I'd be more interested in someone explaining how in this day and age it's still possible to trivially root an OS based on oh-so-secure Linux.

Nice pic, though - is that from Fate/Zero Day?

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While USA is distracted by its President's antics, China is busy breaking another fusion record

Thoguht

Re: That reminds me

What's happening is that Rossi persuaded financial heavyweight Neil Woodford to invest a reported £32m of his customers' money in it. I know you don't make money without taking risks, but this seems too big a risk to be taking.

The general view though seems to be that although it is indeed a tremendous risk, it only constitutes 0.5% of the fund that holds this investment, and if it did turn out actually to work then it would make trillions so it's worth a flutter.

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Microsoft offers cloud to Baidu, gets autonomous car in return

Thoguht

Ford SYNC now uses QNX Neutrino OS.

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New work: Algorithms to give self-driving cars 'impulsive' human 'ethics'

Thoguht

Re: yeah, i'm not quite ready

My Ford Focus which can supposedly read speed limit signs sometimes reads the signboards of passing petrol stations or phone numbers from the backs of lorries and then swears that the speed limit is 100mph or more.

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Thoguht

Re: Mind my ass

Nah, you're OK with swans as, despite being royal property, they are still beasts fera natura.

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Thoguht

Mind my ass

Any algorithms would of course need to take account of local laws, which means in the UK the car would have to be able to tell whether the potentially colliding object was a horse, cow, ass, mule, sheep, pig, goat or dog before framing a course of action.

If we're talking about hitting people, though, I'd go for maximising the QALYs. A bit tough if the car swerves to avoid a baby in a buggy and then as a result mows down a small group of pensioners, but that's life. Or death.

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Civil rights warriors get green light to challenge UK mass surveillance

Thoguht

Re: Liberty

"If you separate out the [wolves] and make them the sheep dogs, the sheep will never give you trouble."

Starship Troopers, Robert Heinlein

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Murdoch's £11.7bn Sky takeover referred to competition regulator

Thoguht

I'm sure I can remember the good old days when mergers got referred to the regulators if the combined company would end up with a presence in more than one medium, let alone all of them.

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FOIA documents show the Kafkaesque state of US mass surveillance

Thoguht

To Constitute or not to Constitute...

I'm not sure what's worse - living in a country with no written constitution or living in one with a written constitution that's ignored with impunity by those in power.

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Sorry to burst your bubble, but Microsoft's 'Ms Pac-Man beating AI' is more Automatic Idiot

Thoguht

Problem?

I can't quite see what the problem is here. If you make AI-based chess software, would you expect it to have to work out the rules of chess and the relative values of the pieces by itself? Or for a self-driving car AI, would you expect it to learn how to drive by eventually working out that it's better for it not to cause accidents?

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Labour says it will vote against DUP's proposed TV Licence reforms

Thoguht

"The Conservative Party manifesto simply says it will ensure pensioners receive free TV licences."

No it doesn't. It says that it will keep free TV licences for the over-75's for the current parliament.

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Do cops need a warrant to stalk you using your cellphone records? US Supremes to mull it over

Thoguht

Re: What a Mess

Your cart is before your horse there. Of course any legal system must protect the innocent from criminals, but it must not do so at the expense of the innocent being unjustly and arbitrarily regarded as criminals.

This is the essential point of "probable cause" - it means you have to have built a case against someone before you can go gathering private information about them, rather than just going fishing for information that may or may not suggest criminality. The latter is far easier than the former, so of course it's the favoured solution of hard-pressed, overworked law enforcement officers. It's a damn difficult circle to square, which is why, finally, the right thing has happened and it's gone to the Supremes.

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UK ministers to push anti-encryption laws after election

Thoguht
Devil

Re: She is watching you

And you expect me to click on that link? How do I know that Windows gif libraries haven't been already been backdoored?

And I'm fresh out of tinfoil, too.

4
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Media players wide open to malware fired from booby-trapped subtitles

Thoguht

Re: Will they ever learn?

Nobody said anything about subtitles normally containing executable code, presumably it's an unchecked buffer in some subtitle library that allows a malformed subtitle string to be executed. And just because something is formed from even 8 bit printable characters that doesn't mean it can't be executed, for example, the standard EICAR "test virus":

X5O!P%@AP[4\PZX54(P^)7CC)7}$EICAR-STANDARD-ANTIVIRUS-TEST-FILE!$H+H*

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ZeniMax: Thanks for the $500m, Oculus. How about you, Samsung?

Thoguht
Headmaster

The $500m Oculus? Sometimes even two commas are not enough.

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America 'will ban carry-on laptops on flights from UK, Europe to US'

Thoguht

The last time I flew into Melbourne I had to take my shoes off. Mind you, this was at the peak of the UK foot and mouth epidemic so they were disinfecting all pommie footwear.

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RBS is to lay off 92 UK techies and outsource jobs to India – reports

Thoguht

In some industries, companies could rightly be criticised for offshoring on the grounds that, although they are exporting their own jobs, they are relying on other companies not doing the same so there's still someone left to buy their products in this country. However, the banks have worked out that this doesn't apply to them because even the unemployed need bank accounts these days.

And yes, I am currently an RBS customer, but not for much longer.

8
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Boffins Rickroll smartphone by tickling its accelerometer

Thoguht

Re: Hang on a mo...

The whole thing has been misunderstood by El Reg, what they are doing is controlling the accelerometer's output by using sound. So if you have software which is using the accelerometer's output like a fitness tracker or pedometer app then you can spoof the amount of exercise you are getting.

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Firefox 52 kills plugins – except Flash – and runs up a red flag for HTTP

Thoguht

Re: "The browser will now only run Flash"

I've been submitting tax returns quite happily for years without Java on my system - sure you aren't mixing it up with JavaScript?

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Pai, Pai, Mr American spy: FCC supremo rips up privacy protections for broadband punters

Thoguht
Headmaster

Not so clean...

Because (perhaps unknown to the writer of this article), "pai pai" is Japanese slang for a woman with large breasts.

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Forget quantum and AI security hype, just write bug-free code, dammit

Thoguht

What would really help is people not using programming languages that trivially permit things like unchecked buffer overflows. Like the C language family, for instance.

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