* Posts by Phil Endecott

513 posts • joined 29 Nov 2006

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O (n^2) Canada! Code bugs knacker buses, TV, broadband, phone lines

Phil Endecott

What's the O(n^2) connection?

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'I feel violated': Engineer who pointed out traffic signals flaw fined for 'unlicensed engineering'

Phil Endecott

I thought that in America an "egnineer" was a train driver.

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NASA's Cassini snaps pic inside Saturn's ring – peace among the stars

Phil Endecott

Can we please not have "artists impressions" as the headline images in stories like this?

They distract from the actual science.

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That CIA exploit list in full: The good, the bad, and the very ugly

Phil Endecott

Re: Slightly off topic...

> can anyone point me to a guide as to how to Wireshark other

> devices on my LAN via wi-fi.

Your switch needs "port morroring".

I.e. you need an ethernet switch connected to (a) broadband router, (b) wifi acces point, (c) PC, configuured so that port (b) is mirrored to port (c).

This isn't easy if you have a combined wifi+boradband box, as most people do, unless that has a mirroring feature itself (which it probably doesn't). And the cheapest ethernet switches don't have port mirroring.

The alternative is to have two network interfaces on your PC, and to make the PC itself a bridge that the data must traverse between the broadband internet connection and the device of interest.

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Watt the f... Dim smart meters caught simply making up readings

Phil Endecott

> As a Rogowski coil results in a time-derivative of the measured

> current, the measured voltage has to be integrated

That's completely doomed if there is any significant DC component in the load, e.g. if there are devices with half-wave rectifiers, or full-wave rectifiers that are asymetric in some way.

To be fair they do have significant advantages over current transformers, i.e. linearity. And a good electronic meter should be more accurate than a mechanical one. But a cost-reduced electronic meter can clearly be crap.

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Florida Man jailed for 4 years after raking in a million bucks from spam

Phil Endecott

Re: @Phil Endecott

> (Do you even know what USENET is/was?)

Very much so, I was there.

> The point is that its not that easy to catch and shut down.

These guys were selling their services to legitimate businesses. You catch them by asking the businesses that are promoted in the emails who they paid to send them. Much easier to prove in court if you have a witness who says "we paid them to do it", rather than evidence involving IP addresses.

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Phil Endecott

The aspect that I find disappointing is that he was in business for long enough to make a million dollars before he got stopped.

Ideally, I'd get one spam email and forward it to the authorities who would act immediately to shut down whoever sent it. In practice, the reaction to such reports is "you probably signed up for their spam but forgot".

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Global IPv4 address drought: Seriously, we're done now. We're done

Phil Endecott

Re: IPv6 usage soaring?

> ISPs which have enabled ipv6 like Sky and BT.

Well, BT have recently enabled it for users who have their newest router. Mine is 5 years old, and is unlikely to be replaced any time soo; it says: "IPv6 will be disabled on your BT Home Hub and BT Broadband Network until supported by future services"

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NHS reply-all meltdown swamped system with half a billion emails

Phil Endecott

I'm quite impressed that only 1 in 10,000 of the recipients replied.

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Final 25G/50G Ethernet spec finally lands

Phil Endecott

I'm more interested in 2.5G / 5G. Any news on that?

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Meet Hyper.is – the terminal written in HTML, JS and CSS

Phil Endecott

Re: Anyterm

Right now the bastet and adventure demos are working for me but nano is down.

They have deliberately low max-session limits...

I did consider doing persistent sessions, but on reflection I decided that it's better to do that at the next layer down i.e. using screen. Then configure Anyterm to invoke screen, rather than "ssh localhost". I should probably mention that in the docs.

There is no sensible way to do key-based auth. One-time passwords of some sort might be the best alternative. TBH it's fundamentally not well suited to situations needing more than modest security.

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Phil Endecott

Anyterm

It's now 11 years since I wrote Anyterm, the first terminal-on-a-web-page:

http://anyterm.org/

There are some demos there, but you'll probably crash it if you all try at once.

It's open-source (GPL) and still maintained - I just added IPv6 support a few days ago.

For those of you asking "why", the main answer is so that people who find themselves behind an http-only firewall can still do command-line stuff on external machines.

My implementation was largely constrained by the technology available at the time (and the code still has lots of work-arounds for hopefully long-since-fixed browser bugs). It should be much easier to do today if you start from scratch.

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If your smart home gear hasn't updated recently, throw it in the trash

Phil Endecott

Realistically, few people are going to follow this sort of advice and throw away products that, as far as they are concerned, are still working correctly.

So what is the real-world solution, that allows the net to function smoothly despite billions of vulnerable devices being attached to it?

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UK cops spot webcam 'sextortion' plots: How vics can hit stop

Phil Endecott

Re: Quote from the video

"I am curious. How many foreign sextortionists have been convicted targeting for UK citizens?"

Maybe some; according to http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-38150313 :

"Last year more than 40 arrests were made in the Philippines in relation to sextortion and there is one ongoing international prosecution connected to one of the suicides reported this year."

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Power cut interrupts UK.gov cloud service supplier

Phil Endecott

Anyone else read that as Mumsnet?

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World's shortest international flight: now just 21km in 7 minutes

Phil Endecott

I was hoping it would be a sea plane, or better still an airship!

(Friedrichshafen was the base of the Zeppelin operation.)

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VW Dieselgate engineer sings like a canary: Entire design team was in on it – not just a few bad apples, allegedly

Phil Endecott

Re: It seem to me

I think the point is that a *petrol* engine could meet the standards.

Or possibly they were setting the standard based on what would be acceptable healthwise.

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Meet Deliveroo's ‘bold and impactful’ new logo. No, really

Phil Endecott

Isn't that the playboy logo, in greenand without the bow tie?

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Deep inside Nantero's non-volatile carbon nanotube RAM tech

Phil Endecott

It's using the CNTs to form a coherer, isn't it!

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coherer

Does anyone understand the bit about using "phonons" to docohere? Old coherers needed some sort of vibrator to do that.

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African Ring of Fire to show up at annular solar eclipse

Phil Endecott

Rubbish diagram.

It seems to show sun, moon and earth with spacings that correspond to an annular eclipse - but then bends the lines so that it shows a total eclipse.

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French submarine builder DCNS springs leak: India investigates

Phil Endecott

Re: A big mistakes in this article...

No, not fixed; you start talking about "the australian contract`' in para 6, but don't say what it is until the penultimate paragraph.

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New science: Pathetic humans can't bring themselves to fire lovable klutz-bots

Phil Endecott

Unexpected Item In The Bagging Area => PUNCH THE SCREEN

Unexpected Item in The Bagging Area + Sad Face => "Aw How Cute"

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Sysadmins: Use these scripts to fully check out of your conference calls

Phil Endecott

Recent Dilbert - Wally has replaced himself with a chatbot.

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Holy Crap! Bloke finishes hand-built CPU project!

Phil Endecott

Fantastic!

There is someone on the planet who is worse at tetris then me....

But he's surely better at soldering!

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Neo4j bolts on binary protocol to up its graph database game

Phil Endecott

Re: Use the all purpose tool

By that logic, the entire article could be simplified to "Neo Technology has released Neo4j 3.0" and we could just use Google to find out the rest.

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Phil Endecott

Some clue what "neo4j" is in e.g. the first paragraph might be useful.

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Britain is sending a huge nuclear waste shipment to America. Why?

Phil Endecott

Did I miss page 2?

Why is this 700kg shipment going to the US? What are they going to do with it? Why are they happy to take it? What's this about "cancer curing uranium" in exchange?

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Woman scales Ben Nevis wielding selfie stick instead of ice axe

Phil Endecott

You can buy a widget to turn an ice axe into a selfie stick.

Unfortunately not vice-versa.

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Oh, sugar! Sysadmin accidently deletes production database while fixing a fault

Phil Endecott

Re: it's so easy

My approach is to type

SELECT * FROM IMPORTANT_TABLE WHERE ATTRIBUTE = SOMEVALUE

cursor up ^a^d^d^d^d^d^d^d^dDELETE

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BT: We're killing the dabs brand. Oh and can customers re-register to buy on our site?

Phil Endecott

Dabs was truely the worst customer service I ever got from any retailer ever.

Many of the others I won't buy from because of the constant deluge of spam that continues daily a decade after I bought from them just once.

I've recently stopped buying from Amazon after they charged me £70 for "prime" that I didn't ask for (presumably I forgot to not un untick the 'no, I do yes not no do don't want to not not not join' box).

It's a shame there doesn't seem to be a retailer who can just get it right.

(Apple and John Lewis work OK, but they obviously don't sell everything.)

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Middle-aged US bloke pleads guilty to iCloud celeb nude photo hack

Phil Endecott

Re: They gave him their password

In your car insurance example, the insurance company are not saying that stealing the car was legal because of where you left your keys; they're only saying that they won't pay out. The theif, if caught, would still be convicted.

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Google-backed British startup ‘stole our code’, says US marketing firm

Phil Endecott

Re: "behavioural marketing automation software"

> I don't much care which one wins, and rather hope that both lose.

I think I first heard that said re Mohamed al Fayed and Nigel Hamilton.

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ICO fined cold-call firm £350k – so directors put it into liquidation

Phil Endecott

“We want to send a clear message to other firms that this type of law-breaking will not pay.'

On the contrary, the message seems to be that you can make a million pounds and keep £650,000 of it.

The fine is less than 1p per call, which is even more pathetic than the other recent ones. As a start, I'd like to raise it to at least as much as the fines for littering, parking etc.

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California methane well leak filled a Rose Bowl a day

Phil Endecott

Re: Pressure

And temperature! Don't forget temperature! Charles' law and all that.

Maybe we need an el reg "standard temperature and pressure" ? Suggestions? Improvements on; "as warm and squashed as a good boozer on a Friday afternoon".

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ICO slaps HIV support group with £250 fine following email blunder

Phil Endecott

Suspended sentence

How about this idea:

"You trustees are each sentenced to a fine of £100,000, suspended for 10 years.

"During those ten years you will be supervised by a probation officer who will make unannounced visits to your premises. If they find that you are storing your patient data in a system from which it may be copied-and-pasted or otherwise exported in bulk, or if they find that your email system is configured to allow messages to be sent to large numbers of recipients without multiple levels of confirmation and a time-delay, you will be liable to pay the fine in full."

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Telemarketers hit with £70,000 fine for cold-calling pensioners

Phil Endecott

Less than £2 per call. Pathetic.

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Khronos releases Vulkan 1.0 open graphics specification

Phil Endecott

> Apple created and gave OpenCL to Khronos back in 2009

But the more recent data point is that they created Metal in 2015 and kept it as an Apple-only technology.

> has its high-level SceneKit and SpriteKit as proprietary APIs up where most

> developers now hang out.

Not developers who are trying to write portable code.

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Phil Endecott

I fear Apple is unlikely to support this, as they have their "metal" language which does a similar thing. So for cross-platform development, you're probably still stuck with OpenGL.

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Virgin Atlantic co-pilot dazzled by laser

Phil Endecott

Technological solution

Legislating about this is as likely to change anything as increasing the fine for littering.

For once, a technological solution might be the most effective. Presumably the military must have some ideas; they must have worked out that dazzling your opponent with a laser was a good idea long ago, and worked out how to protect themselves against it.

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FTDI boss hits out at 'Chinese criminal gang' pumping knock-off chips

Phil Endecott

Re: Not much sympathy

> isn't USB to serial port completely standard (like day 1, first line of USB protocol specs).

No - though I can understand why you might think it would be. See http://www.usb.org/developers/docs/devclass_docs/ for a list of classes of device that are standardised.

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Winning Underhand C Contest code silently tricks nuke inspectors

Phil Endecott

Any entries from employees of VW ?

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How to build the next $1bn tech unicorn: Get into ransomware

Phil Endecott

> couple of criminals abuse the system, so lets ban the whole thing

How much use is Bitcoin getting for purposes other than ransomware and drug deals?

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Watch out, er, 'oven cleaners': ICO plans nuisance call crackdown in 2016

Phil Endecott

That's less than £10 per complaint.

How long does it take to prepare and file an ICO complaint? OK, I guess this does come out at better than the minimum wage, but not by much.

I gave up complaining long ago. The fines really need to be 100X or 1000X larger in order to be worthwhile.

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The ball's in your court, Bezos: Falcon 9 lands after launching satellites

Phil Endecott

I find it interesting that they find this a better economic trade off than either (a) parachutes and fishing it out of the sea, like the shuttle boosters, or (b) gliding, perhaps using some sort of air-breathing engine. It would be interesting to hear how they decided on this method, despite its obvious challenges.

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3 continents, 8 countries and one cyber attack on a fake petrol company

Phil Endecott

> Bulgaria; Georgia; Lithuania; Moldova; Romania; Ukraine; the UK ... and the US

What an impressive of countries.

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HMRC aims for fully digital tax system by 2020. Yeah, whatever

Phil Endecott

Making things "easier" for me by making me submit a form four times as often. Wow, thanks.

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NZ unfurls proposed new flag

Phil Endecott

Re: I Like the Swirly One

Swirly = Debian logo = coffee stain of quality:

http://dilbert.com/strip/1996-06-11

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Japanese hack gets space probe back on track

This post has been deleted by a moderator

Oxford Uni unearths 800-year-old document to seize domain names

Phil Endecott

University of Bums on Seats

If you fancy a laugh:

http://cynicalbastards.com/ubs/

"The Antithesis of Academic Excellence"

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Windows Phone won't ever succeed, says IDC

Phil Endecott

Re: Why do people pay these people

Yes, great find, and also interesting to see that the first few comments there are saying "but in 2006 they said.....". Reading the comments would seem to be a more reliable predictor.

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