* Posts by Unicornpiss

926 posts • joined 7 Oct 2011

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Intel is upset that Qualcomm is treating it like Intel treated AMD for years and years

Unicornpiss
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Qualcom

..and the Qualcom chips are arguably better too..

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What can you do with adult VR, some bronze gears and a robotic thumb? On a Friday?

Unicornpiss
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Meh

If it was a Microsoft app..

..it would get you to the brink and then "Something went wrong :( " If Apple, it would get you almost there and then ask you for another $9.99 to continue, or cause you extreme pain but keep going because a marketing survey showed that that's how users like it.

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User left unable to type passwords after 'tropical island stress therapy'

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Lotion and cologne

What tends to be kind of nasty is when (usually some of our female) users use a lot of hand or body lotion continually. While it smells nice, their keyboards and mice tend to be.. glossy.. with the letters worn off the keys and the lotion typically gunks up the scroll wheel on the mouse so that it's gooey and sticky to the touch.

Re. odor, we had for a time a couple of users I could track through the parking lot outdoors... in a windstorm.. minutes after they'd passed through. BO? No. Just way, way too much cologne or perfume. One guy who doused himself with Drakkar before leaving home, and a woman who wore some particularly acrid scent that smelled to me like suntan lotion on an unwashed blanket. (older admin assistants were known for this) I would literally wait several minutes after she passed by to walk in her wake, it was that bad and would instantly give me a slight headache. Particularly bad too is a cologne abuser when encountered doing something stinky in a lavatory. The combo of biological and unnatural odors would be enough to make your head swim and your gorge rise.

If you can be detected more than a couple feet away, you're using too much. Where is the vomit icon?

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

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Never been very impressed by these..

..at least not in the business world. I feel they are a nice toy for home use or perhaps light use by someone who has simple IT needs. They do have a beautiful display and an accurate touch screen.

That said, the lack of USB ports, cardboard pizza box keyboard, and awful touchpad make these terrible to use IMHO compared to a proper laptop. We bought these like hotcakes when they came out. (not our decision, but made by management) After the first few, "machine envy" took over: "Ooh, when can I get one?!" The clincher is the poor reliability we experienced, combined with the glued-together chassis making battery replacement, upgrade, and data recovery difficult when they fail. We have a drawer full of broken Surfaces and ones that were returned by users who wanted to go back to their old laptops. The docks were very troublesome too.

Dell's line of tablets show some promise, and they are serviceable. (mostly) Annoyingly, Dell's USB docks have been troublesome, and there is no video output to connect to equipment in situations where wireless is not available.

I think I'll hold on to my laptop for the time being and I try to dissuade users from wanting a tablet. I rather like Asus' line of "convertible" laptops though.

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Male escort says he gave up IT to do something more meaningful

Unicornpiss
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Happy

I'm glad his story has a happy ending

..daily

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Shock: NASA denies secret child sex slave cannibal colony on Mars

Unicornpiss
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I don't want to see Uranus

That is all.

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Unicornpiss
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On the dark side..

If you look at the dark side of the Moon, you can see the new CIA detention camp, next to the camps of NK, China, Russia, 5eyes and all other leading repressive regimes.

At least in the course of building these things they eradicated the Nazis:

Nazis on the Moon

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Unicornpiss
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Meh

So now you know

So, whenever any of us expecting rationality in the world are amazed that [insert your favorite name here] got elected, got promoted, got rich, received some kind of support or accolade that makes no sense, proposed or passed some idiotic legislation, or just plain seems to operate on a form of logic that makes the famous Pentium bug look 100% fit for purpose, all we must do is remember this article. People are absolutely crazy and are the broken gears that drive a mad, mad world. If someone that is completely batshit (beyond even the normal standards) can rise to a prominent government post, causing who even knows how much harm in the course of their career, then have a public channel with countless listeners to further confuse hearts and minds, what hope do any of us have? It really makes a person just want to find an island and withdraw from society.

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US engineer in the clink for wrecking ex-bosses' smart meter radio masts with Pink Floyd lyrics

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Does anyone but me..

..think that the original proposed sentence of "90 years" is a tad high for essentially disrupting a radio station??

I mean all references of "Careful with that Axe Eugene" aside, you could truly be an axe murderer or do other unspeakable acts and be sentenced to a fraction of that.

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PC rebooted every time user flushed the toilet

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Re: Not a PC but...

Back in the days when our company had Blackberries, when a mass meeting was called, the first announcement over the PA in the room was to have everyone turn off their Blackberries. Not for the disruption, but because the audio gear would pick up the poorly-shielded CPUs with several hundred of these devices 'broadcasting' in the meeting room.

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Unicornpiss
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Pint

I read this story about 15 years ago..

I don't remember where, but it was in a column on troubleshooting odd problems. The only differences I can spot are that in the story I read, replacing the weak power supply in the PC, not the well pump, was the resolution.

Of course this could certainly have happened more than once. Either way, a fun problem to diagnose.

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Intel's Skylake and Kaby Lake CPUs have nasty hyper-threading bug

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Perhaps we've been unfairly blaming Windows..

..for the random blue-screens and freezes that nearly every Windows box seems to experience in our organization once in a while. Issues that have happened to our newer Dells with i5s and i7s and that we've never been fully able to eradicate, despite patching/updating everything possible, swapping memory, hardware, etc.

No excuses or benefit of the doubt though for the utterly awful Windows update process that needs to be taken out back of the barn and shot.

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BOFH: Putting the commitment into committee

Unicornpiss
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Happy

Re: Exactly

"All the tools ive made for our staff are command prompt tools. its good for them!"

Ah, but what color is the background of the command prompt window that comes up?

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Microsoft totters from time machine clutching Windows 10 Workstation

Unicornpiss
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Meh

But..

..will it blend?

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I fought Ohm's Law and the law won: Drone crash takes out power to Silicon Valley homes

Unicornpiss
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Boffin

Just trying to harvest 1.21 GW..

"It's a weather experiment!"

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Event horizons around black holes do exist, say astroboffins

Unicornpiss
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Re: Nice to see some sense

Here's a question then... Since photons continually move at the speed of light, they do not experience time. So if a photon "falls" into a black hole's event horizon, where time effectively stops (and the photon too), and a photon must always move at the speed of light, what happens?

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LIGO physicists eyeball a new gravitational wave

Unicornpiss
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Re: Two solar masses (in energy) escaped

"Einstein's field equations state that nothing can get into or out of a black hole. Time stops at the event horizon."

But they can apparently slowly "evaporate" due to Hawking radiation:

Hawking Radiation

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Microsoft Master File Table bug exploited to BSOD Windows 7, 8.1

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Reality

Why do people still run Windows? The answer is "Marketing." That and the 100s of thousands of businesses that run software that they won't spend the money to update or port to anything else. (or for which alternatives on other platforms don't exist) And the MS-based infrastructure in place with the blood still wet on the contract. Stuff like Exchange, Azure, SharePoint, OneDrive, Skype. And now that businesses are using Skype for their main telecom instead of just messaging, the pit grows deeper. The unholy partnerships between big players like Intel, Dell, HP and MS also serve to discourage anyone who dares to think differently when choosing a processor or OS.

I personally use Linux as much as I can at home, and would love to see it more in the home and workplace on desktops, but don't see it changing anytime soon, at least in the US, unfortunately.

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WannaLaugh? Funsters port WannaCrypt to Commodore, Cisco, Nintendo and Tesla

Unicornpiss
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2006...

I can still get updated discs for my 2006 vehicle, and the integration into the display by the speedometer is very convenient. Of course the discs aren't free, or even very cheap, and the ancient hardware likes to occasionally stop reading the disc, and I'm chucking the whole thing anyway and getting an after market radio in a few days because the display has decided to only work when it wants. So not sure what point I'm trying to make here..

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Industrial Light & Magic: 40 years of Lucas's pioneering FX-wing

Unicornpiss
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Happy

Re: Industrial Light & Magic

Still doesn't beat the old Research In Motion recruiting site: "rimjobs.com"

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Unicornpiss
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Thumb Up

Re: Still didn't escape uncanny valley

Somehow I found the Leia rendering more off-mark and creepy, perhaps due to the more recent death of Carrie Fisher, but overall, an impressive effort.

For me, the movie was very well done, especially the way the poignant end scenes captured the hopelessness when sometimes the partisan underdog does lose the game, wrongfully. Lots of resonances with our current times and political situations too.

I fully expected anything new from George Lucas to be cheesy and just another gratuitous showing off of effects "because we can", but I was very pleasantly surprised.

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Intel pitches a Thunderbolt 3-for-all

Unicornpiss
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Alert

A few things--a Luddite rants..

Linux doesn't instantly support bleeding edge hardware, mainly because being maintained the way it is, it's not in bed with the hardware vendors the way MS and Intel are, for example. And when support is added, it usually works fairly well. Before the flames begin, raise your hand if you've been peeved by plugging a mouse or flash drive into a Windows box and waiting up to 5 minutes for Windows to figure out what driver to use, and occasionally still failing, causing you to play "port roulette" and try another port just to make it work. Plug something into Linux, and if it's supported, it comes up nearly instantly with no fuss.

Cable "standards": I don't much care what is agreed on for the next gen ports, but please agree on something and stick with it. And the trend for everything to be ever smaller while fitting more functionality into a cable is disturbing. How many of these wonder cables will you need to replace often because everything is crammed into such a tiny connector that is anything but robust? USB-C hasn't been mainstream that long and we already have devices with flaky ports, and the cables fall out so damn easily. And charging or powering a device with ever smaller wires and connectors when many devices have 2+ amps of draw is getting a bit scary too. Yes it works, and there are safeguards, but not a lot of margin for error.

As a final complaint, what's with the disappearing of all but 1 or 2 ports on machines these days? I understand cost savings and you can only put so many ports on a dinky little tablet, but for those of us that actually USE a machine for more than updating Facebook or occasionally transferring photos, it's anathema. Would you move into a house that only had one electrical outlet in the kitchen? /rant

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Huawei Honor 8 Pro: Makes iPhone 7 Plus look a bit crap

Unicornpiss
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But don't you want it thinner? Don't you?

By the iPhone 10, one of the advertised features will be that you can shave with it, and the Plus and Plus +(++) will offer multiple blades, and a proprietary hipster grooming app will be included. Beyond protecting it from fracturing, the next generations of Otterbox will offer "Otter-goo", a lubrication strip with a sebaceous, self-secreting lubricant straight from the Otterbox for smooth shaving. The "iStrop" will be offered to keep it sharp. If you cut yourself, the pulse monitoring sensor will detect it and the phone will offer a soothing cooing noise to assuage your pain. (for $29.95) Next up will be the lawsuit against Motorola (or what's left of them) for claiming the "Razor" trademark.

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Unicornpiss
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Meh

Re: "Can you run IOS on it?"

The poor Android device would soon die. Not because the hardware is incapable of the specs in any way (except for the kitschy multi-pressure screen), but because its spirit crushed, it would take its own life, in much the way I would consider the same if I had to go back to working a Level 1 Helpdesk after many years in IT, or attend perpetual team-building exercises.

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Unicornpiss
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Re: And still shovelling Android

"Irrespective of whether or not Apple are keeping up with the hardware, iOS is why I buy Apple, not the hardware."

At the risk of a Coke vs. Pepsi debate here, I feel quite the opposite, and I've used both and have to occasionally support iOS. To me, Android has always been the superior choice for features, usability, logic in the UI design, and not henpecking you with persistent dialogs that pop into the middle of what you're doing, admonishing you to sign back in to Facebook or whatever. (and ugh, iTunes) I will admit that Apple's ecosystem is probably more secure, but a little common sense goes a long way towards security, though many people have never heard of the concept.

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Nukes tests caused space weather, say NASA boffins

Unicornpiss
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Nothing cooler looking...

..than the ethereal blue glow of a hard working amplifier or rectifier tube.

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Unicornpiss
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Mushroom

Tubes vs. transistors vulnerability

"If you made a valve the size of a MOSFET, it would have a similar inherent vulnerability to EMI"

Don't forget the working voltages of valves/vacuum tubes are also typically higher than that of transistors, so any EMP-induced currents are not as likely to exceed the operational parameters of tubes vs. transistors.

This was late 50s/early 60s tech that was destroyed too--I imagine it would wreak havoc with modern LSI electronics, through we've probably gotten a bit better at shielding them than back in the day.

(the icon choice should be obvious) :)

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Comey was loathed by the left, reviled by the right – must have been doing something right

Unicornpiss
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Meh

At the risk of bruising a dead horse a little more..

Hillary is no prize, but people seem to be unable to make the distinction between making a mistake and criminal intent. That she was apparently stupid enough to use a personal email for official business is a firing offense for most jobs and certainly called into question her fitness for office. But this falls short of criminal behavior.

Still, I would have rather had her in office than the lame excuse for a human being we have now.

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Try not to scream: Ads are coming to Amazon's Alexa – and VR goggles

Unicornpiss
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Simply won't be using it

And I urge everyone else to consider doing the same. There are already enough ads all of us are exposed to every day. Just needless aggravation and a lowering of the collective IQ, IMHO.

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Today's bonkers bug report: Microsoft Edge can't print numbers

Unicornpiss
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Re: Windows 10 printing in general..

"Cinnamon Mint requires opening a web browser to choose the correct setting at the printer. There is no option in the Linux Print dialog box to do this."

Really? I run Mint and I can choose color or b/w. Admittedly cancelling a bunged up print job is a little harder in Mint, though it at least cancels quicker than in Windows..

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Unicornpiss
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Meh

Windows 10 printing in general..

..is half-broken. From the idiotic message "If you set this as your default printer, Windows will stop managing it." which does nothing but confuse most people, to the way printers added from a print server show up weirdly for a while before settling down. (after the normal insane delay just displaying devices and printers) Oh, and drivers are missing for very common printers too.

Then there's the actual printing--why is it printing generally works the worst from Microsoft's own apps? I was trying to print out a BitLocker recovery key using Notepad FFS and got nothing but blank pages. Word did something else odd. Pasting into Notepad++ allowed a normal print. Print drivers? Well maybe, but this was printing to a very common HP Laserjet using MS's own drivers, and doesn't explain well why it works in some apps and not others.

I'd have to agree that printing seems to be like something Microsoft's devs slapped on after waking up with a hangover the morning of the release date and saying "Oh shit dude, we forgot to do printing!"

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Unicornpiss
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Meh

When we set up a new machine..

..we automatically switch the default browser to IE from Edge. While I usually use a simple script to set the defaults for web browsing to IE and viewing PDFs to Acrobat Reader, sometimes I have to switch manually and I derive a perverse pleasure in ignoring the "Check it out" message from Windows and clicking "Switch anyway", not giving Edge a chance.

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Need the toilet? Wanna watch a video ad about erectile dysfunction?

Unicornpiss
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Happy

Contests

I've always thought there could be a market for "urinal games." Guys like to pee on things and test their aim, so why not a little spinner in the urinal? This could be coupled to a small (waterproof or piss proof) encoder or dynamo and an electronic scoreboard. He who spins the little wheel the longest gets the highest score.

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Unicornpiss
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Pint

Come give a seminar where I work..

..we have all the insanity you like, from the proprietary tablet sign-in system at our front desk written by an intern that left for greener pastures 5 minutes after he was done coding it, to the cranky A/V systems that IT was never consulted on when they were spec'd and installed.

We do have nice clean bathrooms too. (and I'm grateful for the autoflush feature in them) I love watching someone come out of a stall after apparently birthing the Antichrist in there, and "wash" their hands for about 1.5 seconds. (all you've accomplished is to give the germs some nice hydration that they need to prosper and be happy)

As a side note, the best sign I've heard of in a bathroom is a large placard over the sink, which states "Think!" to one and all. And someone obligingly responded by scrawling "Thoap!" over the soap dispenser.

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Ewe, get a womb! Docs grow baby lambs in shrink-wrap plastic bags

Unicornpiss
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Boffin

Am I the only one..

..that thinks it would be really cool to use this to see a developing embryo from the very early stages to birth?

I know a lot of people will be unhappy about the concept ethically, but wouldn't it be awesome to see a mammal (not necessarily a human) develop in real time without needing to use ultrasound and other tricks to see the progress?

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iPhone lawyers literally compare Apples with Pears in trademark war

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Now we know..

..what Apple thinks of the overall intelligence level of their target customers, who apparently can't tell one fruit or even one physical object from the other. I hope they start a disappointed shoppers foundation to offer counseling and support to people discouraged after grocery store visits. "Damn, I bought the wrong thing again!"

Maybe I should either become a lawyer or own a liquor store. In both cases, either profits regardless of the situation. Win or lose, lawyers get paid, and people drink to celebrate or drown their sorrows, regardless of their personal economic situation. In fact, this article makes me want a beer already, and it's not even 6AM where I am..

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Alaska dentist 'pulled out patient's tooth while riding a hoverboard'

Unicornpiss
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Meh

My takeaway from this..

..is wondering what the original crime or action was in Alaska that brought about the need for a law to be passed prohibiting "unlawful dental acts." ??

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Switch on your smartphone camera and look how fertile I am

Unicornpiss
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Happy

Does the add-on module..

..have to recharge for a half hour between sessions?

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Hasta la Windows Vista, baby! It's now officially dead – good riddance

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Re: User Account Control..

I actually don't mind entering a password for administrative tasks. (as in Linux) But useful though it may be, having the screen turn a different shade and having to find the warning and click on it is somehow just more annoying. And sometimes during software installs it sits in the taskbar without properly notifying you (in Win 10) leaving you to wonder why your software isn't installing until you poke around and notice it.

I'm not saying it doesn't add security, just that it's annoying, especially when doing certain Enterprise software installs that use multiple components installed by script--so you get notified multiple times for the same install unless you disable UAC beforehand.

I like it when my credit card company alerts me to suspicious or unusual transactions. But I would not enjoy it if they called me every day when I buy lunch with my card.

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Unicornpiss
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Meh

User Account Control..

The OS equivalent of having to take off your shoes and belt at the airport to go through security. Except Security only makes you do it once, not every time you do something more complex than scratching yourself.

A necessary evil? Maybe. A royal pain the the ass. Assuredly.

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Dieting cannibals: At last, a scientist has calculated calories for human body parts

Unicornpiss
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Meh

For accuracy..

Wouldn't you have to take a corpse and burn it by increments in a bomb calorimeter, which is the standard test for assessing calories in a food?

It also looks like zombies are pretty stupid. Craving brains all the time while they should be saying "Thighs! Thighs!" for maximum nutrition.

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Forget Mirai – Brickerbot malware will kill your crap IoT devices

Unicornpiss
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Re: Is it just me who is secretly applauding this...

I hear what you're saying, and can't really disagree, but most of the people that buy these devices are just techy enough to get them to (mostly) work. While it might eliminate some completely insecure devices that could be used in other exploits, mostly it's just adding another headache in the lives of poor bastards that just want to automate their homes, and of course for everyone in customer service that will have to get an earful from every person with a bricked device.

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Customer satisfaction is our highest priority… OK, maybe second-highest… or third...

Unicornpiss
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Meh

One particularly stupid recent one..

Office 365 when upgrading from the 2013 to the 2016 version. Kick off the installer and you receive:

"We're also upgrading Office 2013" -- Really? No shit?

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Put down your coffee and admire the sheer amount of data Windows 10 Creators Update will slurp from your PC

Unicornpiss
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Meh

Not a privacy violation, but..

We have been deploying Win10 for some months at our organization. We've turned off the privacy slurping telemetry and have beaten it into a mostly usable state with with GPOs, reg hacks and similar, but have left a few things on the machine, as we're not total Nazis to our users with our configurations.

One thing that was left was the "Candy Crush" game that comes with Win10. On a new build, I did a 'netstat -a' to try and troubleshoot a connectivity issue. To my surprise, I saw that Candy Crush was connecting to a Microsoft server, even though the game had never even been launched on the PC. This is Windows 10 Enterprise Edition. Even if this is just a ping to a server, why would a fairly useless game that's never even been played need to be running, needlessly wasting bandwidth? This is just something I stumbled on randomly without trying. It makes me afraid for what other apps phone home all the time.

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Wi-Fi sex toy with built-in camera fails penetration test

Unicornpiss
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Coat

@d3vy

But is "mobile hot spot" a euphemism for something else?

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Unicornpiss
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Happy

Kudos for the headline

I'm assuming the penetration test was a simple in and out. (Repeat)

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Unicornpiss
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Re: Rooted via back door

There used to be malware called "Back Orifice", after Microsoft Back Office. Seems kind of fitting too..

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Startup remotely 'bricks' grumpy bloke's IoT car garage door – then hits reverse gear

Unicornpiss
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Thumb Down

There are enough companies with poor customer service

..without their CS wilfully causing more harm intentionally. Personally I'd return the device and tell them it needs extended testing where the sun doesn't shine.

I don't think many tears will be shed when this startup goes out of business.

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Creators Update gives Windows 10 a bit of an Edge, but some old annoyances remain

Unicornpiss
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Trollface

You'd expect better Braille support to be included..

When obviously in UI design you have the blind leading the blind.

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