* Posts by WatAWorld

1352 posts • joined 24 Feb 2012

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I'm a crime-fighter, says FamilyTreeDNA boss after being caught giving folks' DNA data to FBI

WatAWorld

Re: Shocked

"how about "government run hospitals" and EVERYONE'S blood samples?"

If the FBI had access to that blood they wouldn't need private DNA companies.

WatAWorld

Re: Shocked

There was zero proof that DNA FamilyTree was sharing DNA matches with the FBI, up until now.

The situation is the same as with Apple and Google(Android) now as it with FamilyTree DNA before.

WatAWorld

Re: Shocked

"No such database exists, at least according to anything they've release about how TouchID works."

And they don't update your iPhone software to force your CPU to run slower after a year or two.

WatAWorld

Re: Please read the T&A, don't just check the box.

Ten years ago there was nothing about sharing with the FBI. That is when I did my sample.

TOS change. But the TOS for a purchased service is the TOS at the time the service was purchased.

WatAWorld

Re: Proof of ownership?

If you've paid FamilyTreeDNA you've used your credit card, and you're traceable through that.

Assuming you didn't use a stolen credit card.

WatAWorld

Re: Proof of ownership?

Criminals do have most rights. But international law allows those rights to be less than for non-criminals.

For example, the right to assembly, the right to freedom of movement, the right to start a family, the right to communicate in private with others. The UN Declaration on Human Rights allows such rights to be suspended for criminals serving their sentence.

But suspects aren't convicts. They're presumed innocent.

And what about the FBI using DNA not for purposes of criminal law, but in its role as the USA's version of MI5, domestic surveillance and counter-espionage. Surveying dissident politicians and peaceful activists, people with peaceful unpopular opinions.

When I get a DNA test done, am I giving permission for my DNA to be used by the FBI (RCMP, MI5, FSB, etc.) to track a relative 50 years from now?

WatAWorld

Consider too that historically the FBI has done some political policing too.

Consider too that historically the FBI has done some political policing too.

I'm thinking of all the files they kept on peaceful political dissidents like Martin Luther King. I don't know how much the FBI still does, we won't know for 25 years at least. Hopefully not much, but that might change under different administrations.

It is something to keep in mind.

DNAaaahahaha: Twins' 23andMe, Ancestry, etc genetic tests vary wildly, surprising no one

WatAWorld

Re: FDA approved blood glucose meters diabetes depend on for their lives only claim

The original CBC article quoted is here:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/dna-ancestry-kits-twins-marketplace-1.4980976

US National Institutes of Health report on the cost and inaccuracy of human genome sequencing in academic and medical settings

https://www.genome.gov/27565109/the-cost-of-sequencing-a-human-genome/

"Another important driver of the costs associated with generating genome sequences relates to data quality. That quality is heavily dependent upon the average number of times each base in the genome is actually 'read' during the sequencing process.

During the Human Genome Project (HGP), the typical levels of quality considered were: (1) 'draft sequence' (covering ~90% of the genome at ~99.9% accuracy); and (2) 'finished sequence' (covering >95% of the genome at ~99.99% accuracy). Producing truly high-quality 'finished' sequence by this definition is very expensive; of note, the process of 'sequence finishing' is very labor-intensive and is thus associated with high costs.

In fact, most human genome sequences produced today are 'draft sequences' (sometimes above and sometimes below the accuracy defined above)."

WatAWorld

FDA approved blood glucose meters diabetes depend on for their lives only claim accuracy +/- 10%.

Testing the services could more accurately have been done by submitting samples from the same person twice than using twins you think are identical.

FDA approved capillary blood glucose meters that diabetes depend on for their lives only claim accuracy +/- 10%.

+/- 10% despite displaying results with a grossly misleading 2 digits.

You can use google to check up on the accuracy of scientific full sequence DNA tests while a bit higher, it omits large stretches of the full sequence it was supposed to analyse.

And "broadly european" includes French, Germany, etc. It is one of those,as precision goes up accuracy goes down. When they use the limited data in their database to try to narrow regions down more the number of times out of 20 they're right drops.

I'm in Canada and I read the CBC result. And I've used 23andMe myself. Yeah, if you ignore all the cautions and want to use the test for something it doesn't claim to be, you're going to be wrong.

But unlike with FDA approved +/- 10% lab test results, nobody dies.

Normally you'd want to repeat a test with suspect results, to see if it was a hard or soft error, to see what went wrong. The CBC did not do that.

I suspect that what went wrong with the 23andMe samples, the ones that had significant errors was that either:

1. One or both samples was contaminate when taken or when opened.

2. One of both samples was damaged in transit, perhaps by high or low temperatures.

3. An old database was used to analyze one sample and a new database used to analyze the other. That could explain the older less specific output.

IBM HR made me lie to US govt, says axed VP in age-discrim legal row: I was ordered to cover up layoffs of older workers

WatAWorld

Just think of all those ex-IBMers and the purchasing decisions they make each work day.

At a minimum IBM should be banned from US federal and state contracts for 10 years.

But when the Queen's law fails, good citizens take justice into our own hands.

Just think of all those ex-IBMers and the purchasing decisions they make each work day. And each one legitimately knows many reasons why their employers should be extremely wary of IBM products and services, why those products and services will have lapses in support, be retired early for the convenience and profit of IBM, how bills are jacked up, contracts written in a one-sided manner, etc., etc.

IT is still a new and painfully naive industry. There are reasons why established industries have learned not to turf high performance experienced staff.

WatAWorld

Re: Changes staying the same

When a foreign language phrase is used sufficiently in English that it becomes a part of our language its foreign grammar no longer matters.

"The hoi poli". "Hoi" means "the", but you'll see the London Times and everyone use throwing "the" in front of it.

However in this case I suspect you've got the difference between classical French and modern French.

Myself, I prefer to stick to English when I'm writing in English and there are valid English words that describe what I'm saying, as in this case.

That is to day, I avoid being pretentious.

WatAWorld

Re: Sued Into Oblivion

For whatever reason Ginny wasn't sacked a decade ago she'll be walking away from this. Probably get a golden handshake with a few tens of millions to boot.

WatAWorld

Time flies and you'll be 40 sooner than you think

To people considering working at IBM and those already stuck there: Time flies as you get older. The time from 30 to 40 seems to pass by as quickly as the time from 6 to 21. So you'll be 40 sooner than you think. Kids you want to send to college. Vacations cottages you'd like to buy. Retirement just a blink of an eye off.

Situate yourself properly for your future.

In case you're not already sick of Spectre... Boffins demo Speculator tool for sniffing out data-leaking CPU holes

WatAWorld

Making AWS and other IaaS infrastructure untenable is good for selling hardware.

Making AWS and other IaaS infrastructure untenable is good for selling hardware.

It seems to me the motivation is clear.

WatAWorld

IBM distributing free software to make CPUs obsolete?

IBM distributing free software to make existing CPUs obsolete? To "encourage" the obsolescence of existing CPUs?

Which corporate mantra does this fulfill: "Customer First" or "IBM First"?

Windows 10 Pro goes Home as Microsoft fires up downgrade server

WatAWorld

Re: Just go Linux "Take my Linux ... please!"

I dunno, so many people pay over $100 for MS Windows, and pay hundreds of dollars in premium hardware costs to run MacOS, Linux fanbois can't give their pet OS away for free, and those same fanbois are convinced their pet OS is the best for the wider public.

Some kind of disconnect there.

Maybe you Linuxees need a new marketing slogan:

Paraphrasing Henny Youngman, "Take my Linux ... please!"

www youtube com/watch?v=qUil6T5dN6Y

Better than the current slogan, "Linux, so good we can't give it away for free."

WatAWorld

Expecting test versions to not have problems is amateurish.

Expecting test versions to not have problems is amateurish.

If you are going to run test versions of things you've got to expect problems.

The only thing I fault MS for in this is not prominently labeling its test rings as "TEST VERSION" on both the desktop and start menu. This failing by MS allows kids to switch systems they care for over to a test versions, despite that the users may be using it for production.

Dell upping its margins again: Precision 5530 laptop will sting you for $13m. Yep, six zeroes

WatAWorld

Dell thinking it could compete with Apple

Potential customers:

1. NHS

2. Military

3. Trust fund kids

4. "Baristas and other creatives"

Supreme Court raises eyebrows at Google's cozy $8.5m legal deal

WatAWorld

Kieran, if you and your editor want to start being a credible journalists ...

Kieran, if you want to start being a credible journalist you're going to have to stop spouting stuff that most everyone related to events knows are false.

On this side of the Atlantic we all heard the stuff about Kavanaugh, we all heard how one person making the allegations lied about material facts, and how the other was a crank who'd pulled similar stunts in the past.

None of that has anything remotely to do with this story.

Your just spouting slanderous garbage. And why? To be trendy? To be "provocative"?

Today "being provocative" by saying things you cannot possibly sincerely believe means trolling.

Are you and your editor trolling?

Chinese Super Micro 'spy chip' story gets even more strange as everyone doubles down

WatAWorld

Glomar Explorer; Gulf of Tonkin; UFOs and SR71 & F117 test flights; ...

"Faced with such uncertainty, some are reaching for a unifying explanation: that Bloomberg was misled by some in the intelligence community that wish, for their own reasons, to raise the specter of Chinese interference in the global electronics supply chain. Bloomberg could be accurately reporting an intelligence misinformation campaign."

Yes, obviously it is easier for Five Eyes intelligence agencies to thoroughly hack and backdoor stuff totally designed and built within either Five Eyes nations or vassal states. And that is important because you can't infiltrate something by gluing a tiny piece of silicon on it.

Here in Canada we've constantly got the USA trying to tell us to exclude Huawaii from government and private company contracts.

But shouldn't Bloomberg have asked someone at MIT, Stanford, Intel or AMD whether this could function? That a piece of silicon glued to the surface of a circuit board and not connected to conductors could do anything useful?

Bloomberg might well have been duped by the US government, US government's (like probably all national governments) has a long history* of dubbing their press, but an outfit like Bloomberg should have caught it.

* And in the case of the USA, a long officially admitted history. Other countries, especially those on the "other side" don't usually admit things 30 years later.

WatAWorld

Re: A Matter of Trust

So you're saying it is a matter of belief and religion.

Do we believe in Bloomberger Infallibility? Are we of the Bloomberg faith?

Pretty much the only electrical engineers and physicists who believe the story are going to be doing so in the face of facts they know. So yeah, I totally agree, it would be a religious belief for them.

To most professional programmers, the thermodynamic, electrical and quantum mechanical stuff going on inside a computer is magic that they just accept. (It would be useless details that get in the way of coding.) So out of ignorance, and not realizing the limitations of their expertise, they might sincerely believe Bloomberg.

WatAWorld

"China has repeatedly demonstrated significant skill in industrial espionage. I don't doubt they have the means to pull this off, "

They've demonstrated zero technical skill in creating electronic devices capable of high speed data manipulation without a power source and without connection.

Obviously any technologically advanced country can produce a tiny IC and place it on a circuit board. But just sitting there not connected to anything accomplishes nothing.

The USA has even greater expertise and more practical experience, but they couldn't make a piece of unconnected silicon sitting on a non-conductive area of a PC board hack a system.

WatAWorld

Why are ICs always in large packages, how is this dot powered?

It is easy to create an IC smaller than the point of a pencil.

1. Problem #1 is that you need to connect it to power and ground and data buses -- which is why ICs are put into large packages, and why there are circuit board traces leading to them.

2. The dot had neither a windmill nor a solar panel nor a connection to a powerbus, so how is it supposedly powered? Itsy bitsy tiny little nuclear reactor?

And how does it connect to data paths? Psychokinetics?

Simple physics proves that the story has huge errors in its vague technical descriptions and photos.

And with the technical details like power and data connections left out, Bloomberg's story has less than zero credibility.

+++ That said, I do not doubt for a minute that the USA, UK, China, and probably Russia ALL engage in this sort of hardware hacking on a regular basis against key non-governmental targets. +++

(Doubtlessly this sort of spying occurs between governments, but with government targets it is expected. Hopefully no educated person is so arrogant, imperialistic and immoral* that they think their government should be exempted from other governments doing to it what it does to others.

* Accepting others doing to you what you do to others is part of the Lord's Prayer -- the "trespassing part". People living in countries that are truly and sincerely Christian do not claim exceptionalism.

To claim exceptionalism while claiming to be Christian is to lie to yourself and your god.)

Decoding the Chinese Super Micro super spy-chip super-scandal: What do we know – and who is telling the truth?

WatAWorld

It is a matter of choice

I see this as a a matter of choice.

Your choices are to be spied on in similar ways by the Americans, the Chinese, or by one of the other big players.

Not being spied on at all is not an option.

Resident evil: Inside a UEFI rootkit used to spy on govts, made by you-know-who (hi, Russia)

WatAWorld

We know you'd never present us one made by the USA or UK, so yeah

"Resident evil: Inside a UEFI rootkit used to spy on govts, made by you-know-who (hi, Russia)"

Or China. But never the USA, UK, Canada, Australia or NZ -- not because they don't exist, but you cannot or would not publish it due to our laws.

Top Euro court: UK's former snooping regime breached human rights

WatAWorld

Re: So how long until this?

Chekism: where the secret political police strongly control all spheres of society.

If you look at the USA and Russia. If you look at all the ex CIA, KGB and FSB officers working for hedge funds, or in Russia being oligarchs, you can see that those countries already have Chekist regimes.

Why do retired senior US intelligence officials get to keep their top secret security clearances? Why are they entitled to on-going briefing on top secret matters when they're no longer working for the government? It is so they can run business, advice hedge funds, control retirement funds, and control private industry.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chekism

WatAWorld

Yeah, as expected. And they knew what they were doing when they broke the law.

Yeah, as expected. And they knew what they were doing when they broke the law.

But they're the government so they won't face prosecution.

The laws we pay them to write and enforce aren't good enough for our civil servants to obey. The laws they write and enforce only apply to us.

Microsoft accidentally let encrypted Windows 10 out into the world

WatAWorld

It is an early test version -- only an idiot would install it and not expect problems

It is an early test version -- only an idiot would install it and not expect problems.

Sheesh, 19H1, skip ahead version.

I know, MS should have "test version" superimposed on the Start Menu and Desktop of every Insider version, they don't. But still, after all this time who would not expect an early test version to have serious problems?

It's been 5 years already, let's gawp at Microsoft and Nokia's bloodbath

WatAWorld
Trollface

You could equally say that about France, Germany, Algeria and Argentina

"Finland – a nation most Americans couldn't find on a map before the 1990s. Many probably still can't."

;)

Spies still super upset they can't get at your encrypted comms data

WatAWorld

Re: Brexit, anyone?

From my understanding they're dead against Brexit. It will cost them their connection to EU police and intelligence databases.

WatAWorld

Paraphrasing

In an official communiqué on the confab, they claim that Russian, Chinese and North Korean inability to access encrypted content risks undermining democratic justice systems, because our the guys working for the Five Eyes can't access it either – and issue a veiled warning to industry.

Yeah, "we" need to be easily spied upon so that we can be safe.

"We" need to be easily hackable so that we can be safe.

"We" being everyone who does not work for a national security agency, and includes our enterprises, our entrepreneurs, our inventers, our lawyers, our politicians, our academics, our physicians, our artists, and our teenage daughters.

The guys at that confab, they're a bunch of chekists.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chekism

Look at the management of US-based hedge funds. They all seem to have ex CIA and ex MI5 on them.

And of course it goes without saying that major businesses in Russia are mostly run by ex KGB, FSB officers (KGB and FSB being the successors to the Cheka). Same in China with their ex MSS officers.

To put it bluntly: How can one be loyal to their country without being loyal to their country's peaceful citizens? Are they not instead being loyal to their agencies and each other?

Hello 'WOS': Windows on Arm now has a price

WatAWorld

Re: The market for 25 hour battery life is very limited

You're exactly right there.

It is senseless marketing to focus on over-achieving something that need only be totally acceptable.

A race for low weight is pointless after a sufficiently low weight for the target use is achieved.

A race for thinness is pointless after sufficient thinness is achieved (and may even backfire because it means the victim, er uh, customer need to buy an ugly case to keep it in.

And a race for battery life is pointless after a realistic 18 hours is achieved.

WatAWorld

Re: Wipe Windows...

FYI, running Linux on ARM isn't anything new.

But Linux is an operating system that has difficulty finding acceptance when it is given away free.

Shilling for Linux in Windows discussions has been tried many times over the years and it's done nothing to help its acceptance.

Maybe the Linux guys paid people to run it they could get some traction in the mainstream market place? Just a suggestion.

WatAWorld

"ubiquitous WIFI" ???

u·biq·ui·tous

yo͞oˈbikwədəs/Submit

adjective

present, appearing, or found everywhere.

Maybe in a few parts of Canada. Toronto and Montreal are mere specks in this great land of ours. And not every coffee shop is part of a chain.

It isn't going to work for you when you're sitting in your car at the side of a road. Or in a client's steel warehouse. It isn't going to work at your cottage. It isn't going to work in a lot of places.

And even when you're in a place where it works, you might be in a place where "high speed" is 100-300 kbps, like North of 60, or in the shadow of a mountain, or any where in Manitoba outside of Winnipeg or Brandon.

Like Chromebooks, these will be useful as "portables" in schools, universities, and offices where they can stay on-premises in an area of known good reliable and fast cell phone or wi-fi coverage.

Which means battery life is immaterial, since they can easily be plugged in.

And weight weight savings below 2 kg won't matter.

Wider use in mainstream Canada will require eliminating the dependence on always being connected. I think that will be readily possible within a 3-4 years.

WatAWorld

Do I take it that "Always Connected" is marketing speak for "Only Works When Connected"?

Do I take it that "Always Connected" is marketing speak for "Only Works When Connected"?

It would be nice if we all lived in major cities and worked in offices. Must be nice.

CADs and boffins get some ThinkPad love

WatAWorld

Re: not enough

And that is the reality isn't it. While the marketing types and the journalists focus on thinness, or imaginary clock rates that might be possible, thinking buyers look at a manufacturer's track record with support when deciding what to buy.

Nothing is more important when making an IT purchase than whether the manufacturer will support the customer for the life of the product.

Journalists, I suppose regularly getting new products to report on, and with special support channels provided by marketing departments, don't see the issue -- but it is the main issue for the rest of us.

WatAWorld

tech journalists should run the CPU to 100% while measuring the CPU temperature

The phrase "Almost Apple-like", I was expecting to read about 2 year-old hardware in a new model. Anyways,

"The P1 is a new addition to the P-series that embeds workstation specs into something an Apple user might recognise: a thin and light portable"

Meaning when tech journalists get their hands on one they should run the CPU to 100% while measuring the case or junction temperature (which ever is available) to ensure that it stays below 85C and that there is no throttling.

Hackers can cook you alive using 'microwave oven' sat-comms – claim

WatAWorld

Re: I truly hope so

I am one of those who thinks the researchers claims include some exaggerated speculation, particularly on using radar units as microwave ovens. Also he leaves out TCAS. How could he leave out TCAS?

There is TCAS (traffic collision avoidance system) and I truly hope TCAS is secure because pilots are trained to obey any Resolution Alerts (RAs) TCAS issues immediately and almost without exception, including over-ruling ATC instructions.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traffic_collision_avoidance_system#Pilot/aircrew_interaction_during_a_TCAS_event

TCAS was not originally satellite based, but it seems many units use GPS information provided by the aircraft, and that GPS information is of course satellite based.

www.faa.gov/documentLibrary/media/Advisory_Circular/TCAS%20II%20V7.1%20Intro%20booklet.pdf page 21

"With passive surveillance, position data provided by an onboard navigation source is broadcast from the intruder's Mode S transponder. The position data is typically based on GPS and received on own ship by the use of Mode S extended squitter, i.e. 1090 MHz ADS-B, also known as 1090ES. Standards for Hybrid Surveillance have been published in RTCA DO-300."

As I say, TCAS can issue Resolution Alerts (RAs) which are orders to pilots overrule even instructions from the ATC. Pilots are trained to do what TCAS says without question.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traffic_collision_avoidance_system

"TCAS involves communication between all aircraft equipped with an appropriate transponder (provided the transponder is enabled and set up properly). Each TCAS-equipped aircraft interrogates all other aircraft in a determined range about their position (via the 1.03 GHz radio frequency), and all other aircraft reply to other interrogations (via 1.09 GHz). This interrogation-and-response cycle may occur several times per second.[1][2]

"The TCAS system builds a three dimensional map of aircraft in the airspace, incorporating their range (garnered from the interrogation and response round trip time), altitude (as reported by the interrogated aircraft), and bearing (by the directional antenna from the response). Then, by extrapolating current range and altitude difference to anticipated future values, it determines if a potential collision threat exists.

"TCAS and its variants are only able to interact with aircraft that have a correctly operating mode C or mode S transponder. A unique 24-bit identifier is assigned to each aircraft that has a mode S transponder.

"The next step beyond identifying potential collisions is automatically negotiating a mutual avoidance manoeuver (currently, manoeuvers are restricted to changes in altitude and modification of climb/sink rates) between the two (or more) conflicting aircraft. These avoidance manoeuvers are communicated to the flight crew by a cockpit display and by synthesized voice instructions.[1][2]

"A protected volume of airspace surrounds each TCAS equipped aircraft. The size of the protected volume depends on the altitude, speed, and heading of the aircraft involved in the encounter. The illustration below gives an example of a typical TCAS protection volume.

"System components

A TCAS installation consists of the following components:[1][2]

"TCAS computer unit

Performs airspace surveillance, intruder tracking, its own aircraft altitude tracking, threat detection, resolution advisory (RA) manoeuvre determination and selection, and generation of advisories. The TCAS Processor uses pressure altitude, radar altitude, and discrete aircraft status inputs from its own aircraft to control the collision avoidance logic parameters that determine the protection volume around the TCAS aircraft.

"Antennas

The antennas used by TCAS II include a directional antenna that is mounted on the top of the aircraft and either an omnidirectional or a directional antenna mounted on the bottom of the aircraft. Most installations use the optional directional antenna on the bottom of the aircraft. In addition to the two TCAS antennas, two antennas are also required for the Mode S transponder. One antenna is mounted on the top of the aircraft while the other is mounted on the bottom. These antennas enable the Mode S transponder to receive interrogations at 1030 MHz and reply to the received interrogations at 1090 MHz.

'Cockpit presentation

The TCAS interface with the pilots is provided by two displays: the traffic display and the RA display. These two displays can be implemented in a number of ways, including displays that incorporate both displays into a single, physical unit. Regardless of the implementation, the information displayed is identical. The standards for both the traffic display and the RA display are defined in DO-185A.[4]

...

"TCAS works in a coordinated manner, so when an RA is issued to conflicting aircraft, a required action (i.e., Climb. Climb.) has to be immediately performed by one of the aircraft, while the other one receives a similar RA in the opposite direction (i.e., Descend. Descend.).

...

"When an RA is issued, pilots are expected to respond immediately to the RA unless doing so would jeopardize the safe operation of the flight. This means that aircraft will at times have to manoeuver contrary to ATC instructions or disregard ATC instructions. In these cases, the controller is no longer responsible for separation of the aircraft involved in the RA until the conflict is terminated.

"

WatAWorld

Re: I truly hope so

"Yes, you may safely make that assumption. Satellite comms are not used for flight control, only for communications. You could possibly feed erroneous position information to ground operations (though that does not include ATC), but not to the flight crew or flight systems."

So you're trying to tell us that aircraft do not have autopilots that navigate by GPS position?

Or are you not counting GPS as satellite communications?

I think there are also orders sent to aircraft over the middle of the major oceans where VHS is unreliable.

It's time for TLS 1.0 and 1.1 to die (die, die)

WatAWorld

Requiring old stuff to meet KEY new requirements is routine in the physical world

Passenger aircraft. Railway tanker cars. Trucks. Cars.

Procor is junking tens of thousands DOT-111 tanker rail cars when the new tanker car standard comes into force in Canada and the USA. These think aren't cheap.

Old buildings must meet current fire codes. And old buildings that are extensively renovated must meet current building codes (building codes being more complete than fire codes).

WatAWorld

Re: Microsoft

The dates:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.NET_Framework_version_history

Things that were adequate in 2010 are out-of-date and inadequate now.

Is it really that surprising given the rate that hackers and academics find obscure bugs.

If we had to had to wait for ordinary profit-oriented criminal programmers to find the bugs, the products just might perhaps still be secure, against criminals for another year or two. But that would require living in an alternate reality.

(Of course nothing is secure against major state signals intelligence agencies. They can always find ways in. Even TLS 1.4 connections won't be secure, because if outfits like the NSA can't find ways through it, they have many ways around it.)

WatAWorld

Hum, doesn't this accurately describe how emissions tests place new standards on old cars in the UK?

https://www.classiccarsforsale.co.uk/blog/market-trends/historic-cars-win-exemption-in-ultra-low-emission-zone

Yeah, classic cars get an exemption. But classic cars aren't used for everyday driving. They're used sparingly by collectors and museums.

WatAWorld

"This is a bit like saying ALL cars must pass current standards and so most over a few years old are then automatically off to the scrappers."

Exactly, which is what we should be copying.

This is the case in Canada too. And California. And probably the rest of the USA.

Classic cars get an exemption -- but then classic cars are driven sparingly by their owners, and not driven commercially.

In the UK a car has to be pre-1980 to get the exemption. In Canada before 1988.

IBM to GTS: We want you to 'rotate' clients every two years

WatAWorld

Re: Looks like bad management

Ginny isn't going to fire herself for just cause.

WatAWorld

Re: IBM about 25 years behind Cannot Stand Continuity

@MAH, in Canada IBM charges 3 to 5 times what it pays people. And it charges for every hour worked. And it adjusts those rates for inflation, and if the client has a good year.

I don't think giving a headcount a 5% pay hike would make the account unprofitable.

That said, yeah I agree, if he's content in his/her current job, if they're already fully qualified at it, then he or she should content with only getting inflation increases.

WatAWorld

Re: @AC

In Canada the traditional solution to this is to assign the headcount to a job they're incapable of doing. Either a job above their skill level, or a job where the required quotas are unachievable.

You reassign the headcount, and then when they fail, you fire them for just cause.

One has to be careful though, because if the re-assignment is too different from the old job the headcount can claim "constructive dismissal". So you can't do this by assigning a "coder" to sales, or a salesperson to accounting. You'd assign a coder to a different type of coding. That way the headcount doesn't have a case.

It is ruthless.

They need to address the issue that older employees who are targets of the RIF can claim discrimination when they can show that there is still demand for their skills.

WatAWorld

Re: Interesting... color me skeptical.

You're right to be skeptical. This was not announced as a training opportunity for headcounts. And it won't be.

I imagine they'll take your Oracle DBA who has 15 years of RDBMS skills and send him to another Oracle DBA account.

That saves training costs. Saves the new to reduce billing rate. And still achieves the purpose of preventing the client becoming attached to the headcount/resource/person actually providing their service.

And when there are no more Oracle DBA jobs, you sack the headcount and hire a new grad who knows Banana NDBMS.

IBM is a sales and marketing company. Effectively its only real employees are in sales and marketing. They're the wizards that can sell ice to eskimos at $500k a tonne.

The people actually doing work for clients are effectively external contract headcount. You don't want your client becoming attached to external contract headcount.

WatAWorld

Re: Could be good for the techies

It would be good for the techkies that are not laid off due to not having a client to stick up for them during layoffs. They'd avoid stagnation and keep their skills current -- assuming IBM doesn't just lay them off.

And it would be good for IBM too. Staff more current. Staff better trained. If they were to actually train current staff on new technology.

BUT IBM gave up keeping tech staff up to date 2 decades ago.

Now they layoff the old and hire the new.

So I'll stick with my initial feeling that this is to make layoffs easier for IBM to make.

WatAWorld

IBM brass got fed up with clients complaining about key people being laid-off

If the client doesn't have a relationship with you, then the client won't interfere next month when we frivilously lay you off.

Exclusive IBM will ask Global Technology Services engineers to "rotate" from "existing assignments" every two years in a working model overhaul that some staff warned could weaken client relations.

You know that silly fear about Alexa recording everything and leaking it online? It just happened

WatAWorld

Re: 'This was an extremely rare occurrence.' In other words it was not unique.

"Extremely rare" In other words it was not unique.

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