* Posts by BinkyTheMagicPaperclip

695 posts • joined 11 May 2012

Page:

Curiosity Rover eyes Mars' creeping dunes

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Bah!

odfo dear. There is a difference between legislating against something that might, in a blue moon, possibly affect a particularly unfortunate and stupid child, and something that is definitely extremely expensive, will certainly take money away from other spacecraft, and almost certainly won't allow the astronauts to return home.

I'd like more spacecraft on comets, planetary moons, solar exploration - it's gathered new and exciting science across many environments, rather than limiting it to Mars.

3
1
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Bah!

I'd rather we didn't, to be honest, unless there's a serious immediate benefit to doing so. It's very expensive to get there, it's basically going to be shots of a lot of rocks, and most importantly whoever is sent will die out there. Satellites and robots are increasingly cheaper and easier to land.

When there's a chance of the crew surviving, and not having decades knocked off their life expectancy it'll be a better idea.

6
13

2016 in mobile: Visit a components mall in China... 30 min later, you're a manufacturer

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Wearables come with inconvenience?

'But has no heart rate monitor, no maps / navigation, no support for email, messaging, no support for notifications from any app on your phone, no activity monitoring'

In the nicest possible way, I don't want that, because it makes you look like a complete anorak - and given that I'm not exactly fashionable and fettle a lot of geeky tech, that really is one large anorak. They're as nerdy as the game watch I had when I was ten, and I'm not ten any more.

The only way a smart watch will ever become successful is if it looks exactly like a proper fashion watch, constantly displays the time, has a multi week battery life, and performs a useful function that many people require. I'm not convinced such a function exists, given that a smart phone can be placed in your pocket.

Speaking personally, I might go for a high end running watch at some point, but those are never fashionable, as their design necessitates shock resistance, waterproofing, a backlight, and being strapped to a sweaty wrist. So, in that case I'm always going to have two watches.

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Wearables come with inconvenience?

Cash is less common these days, and you need a card to take the cash out.. I've no idea at the prevalence of cards vs cash in the US, in the UK there's still a lot of cash in use, but pop into mainland Europe (certainly Germany, the Scandinavian countries, and Iceland) and cards rule. Yes, you can pay in cash, but it's not the norm.

0
0

YouTube’s 10 years of hits: Global recognition at last for Rick Astley

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

PSY's latest is much better than Gangnam Style

Go and watch 'Daddy' - it's quite something, and horribly catchy.

0
0

Got a pricey gaming desktop from PC World for Xmas? Check the graphics specs

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: I know it's NYE and you all want to go home, but really..

HP are quite a large manufacturer, they'll have a consistent supplier for the PSUs made by a reputable OEM, to meet their requirements. More importantly it'll be tested under those configurations to have a low failure rate, as a high return rate will cost HP serious amounts of money.

What it won't have is much leeway beyond their list of supported configurations, as that costs HP money.

12 quid for a PSU from someone like Scan is not the same as the PSUs HP has specified, also because the buyers purchase a PSU with the expectation they might upgrade components in the future. Having a quick glance round, the lowest I'd spend is 26 quid on an Aerocool integrator (some of their PSUs are ok, and deliver the rated specification), and I'd rather buy at least a 500W EVGA (35 quid).

Course what I'm actually running at the moment is a high end ThermalTake unit, as my main system is stuffed to the gills with cards and hard drives.

2
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: I know it's NYE and you all want to go home, but really..

The extreme PSU calculator is supposed to cope for maximums, and add a bit of capacitor aging into the mix. Plus, if it's a decent PSU, it won't actually be 500W - it'll be able to cope with 500W continuous load, and spikes above that.

12
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

I know it's NYE and you all want to go home, but really..

First, as already mentioned the HP site says it's a 980 as an option for that product code, not a 980Ti. NVidia deliberately overstate requirements to deal with underspeced supplies.

Try checking out the Extreme power supply calculator http://outervision.com/power-supply-calculator

With the configuration given, it comes out at 491W - which is a little close to 500W, but still within boundaries. You'd hope it's a decent 500W supply, rather than something substandard.

With it configured as a 980 rather than a 980Ti (HP's listed configuration, so I'd be more inclined to believe them), it resolves to 407W/25A on the 12V rail. That's with the processor and GPU at 100% utilisation, so in reality it's unlikely to reach that limit very often.

8
0

I have you now! Star Wars stocking fillers from another age

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Rebelt Assault wasn't that bad at first

Yes, it's on rails, but the rails have a certain amount of leeway - particularly in the star destroyer assault where there's multiple goes if you miss on the initial pass.

The issue is that it's decent for a number of levels, then there's an almost impossible asteroid navigation scene.

In the list of Star Wars failures, there's much worse.

0
0

Software bug sets free thousands of US prisoners too early

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Fix it right

Not tautology - bodge, or work around an issue. The specific issue is 'fixed', the root cause isn't. Alternatively fix it in a way that does resolve the root issue, but makes such a mess of the system that the next time it needs to be enhanced, it's almost impossible.

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Idiocracy pretty much nailed it [to a cross?].

Not really, Idiocracy is pretty much a documentary created by a fearless time traveller who came back from the future to warn us what it could be like..

4
0

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Star Wars Special Editions

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

On the whole I don't mind the special editions - I thought I was a hardcore fan, but after taking all the effort to try the de-specialised editions, I found I did not actually care. The film stock cleanup in particular is outstanding.

If we take it as read that the more childish elements (the diplodocus like scene in Mos Eisley) shouldn't have been included, most of my objections are based on changing characters beyond what they should be (Han, Jabba). I thought the changes to Bespin were unrealistic for what Lando describes as a city 'too small' to attract mining guild attention, but on looking closer the city was just as large in the original - only lacking in exterior shots. I wonder on a similar vein, just how large Mos Eisley really should be..

Can't say I'm happy with replacing Jabba and Yoda puppeteering with CGI - wasn't needed in many cases. Likewise, when Vader dies his ghost should most definitely be David Prowse - Vader has to be at least thirty odd, not a teenager, when he dies.

The original death star and planet explosions were awful; I'm glad they were changed in the Special Edition. Biggs, however, should have been there from the start. It adds local context to the film, and it's not necessary to have his Tattoine leaving scene (not seen that, yet). Luke had already spoken about his desire to leave Tattooine, and that all his friends are doing so, so it isn't a shock to see him.

Oh yes, the polar monster in Empire should have been left as-is. It loses tension in the special edition.

Personally I hate the singing at the end of Jedi, but I suppose that's just my opinion that it's naff..

2
0

Press Backspace 28 times to own unlucky Grub-by Linux boxes

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Machine exploitable from console access shocker..

Can't say I'm too worried. Still using LILO though, as Salix is currently my distribution of choice.

2
0

Microsoft steps up Windows 10 nagging

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: FFS Microsoft (AKA F*** Microsoft)

No, it won't 'cover your needs' unless your needs fit exactly what Mint provides. Charles wants to run modern games. The best PC gaming platform is Windows, full stop, end of story. If you're happy running games that are over four years old, Linux may be a realistic option.

If you're using a copy of Windows 7, then you do need Windows software, and the native solutions (even with a translation layer like WINE) are not enough. Resorting to Windows software is continuing to support that platform, and not moving Linux further forward.

I find it quite amusing that people are down voting posts for stating facts. This can't be argued with : Linux does not support DirectX 11 in any sensible fashion. Not in Crossover/WINE, not in VirtualBox, and not in VMWare. Battlefield 3, a four year old DirectX 11 game, appears not to run.

Also, you're out of date. Virtualbox looks like it's limited to DirectX 9. VMWare is up to DirectX 10. If all your games are DirectX 9 based, you're potentially only running games earlier than 2006 - seriously?

It's great that Linux game support is an awful lot better than it used to be, but until native games, or games that work 100% in crossover/WINE on release are the norm, Windows is going to be the better platform.

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: FFS Microsoft

If you mostly compute and play the odd game, SteamOS might suffice. If gaming is a more primary activity it's not even in contention.

Yes, the selection of games is better than it was, but it's nowhere near as good as Windows. Windows will also let you play GOG.com/humble bundle games without a hassle - SteamOS will not (yes, both of those have a smaller Linux range of software, too, but by default SteamOS is not set up to download third party software)

3
4

VDI comes to the Raspberry Pi

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Woot

I shouldn't feed the troll, but, Google is where anyone with sense looks first - provided you actually understand and learn from the result. It is a waste of everyone's time to re-invent something that's already been done. It also doesn't help that a lot of documentation/help indexing is so poor that Google is often the best way to search it, rather then rely on the help system..

As to multi monitors, I've used them for years, recently ranging from one 12" 1024x768 TFT on a laptop (obviously when I actually started, you were lucky to get 640x480), to two monitors at work, and five at home (one was really only a serial console). It's perfectly possible to work with one monitor, but there's a definite improvement in productivity with two - especially for comparing/referencing documentation, and programming/debugging.

Beyond two monitors the improvement is substantially less - it's necessary to actually plan how to use the extra monitors, rather than throw windows onto one without thinking about it. Monitoring/multiple VMs can be useful, specific development tasks, or media playback are areas that can benefit.

3
0

Microsoft beats Apple's tablet sales, apologises for Surface 4 flaws

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Mission impossible...

No-one - if it was a tablet, but it's not. It's really a high speed slim touchscreen/pen laptop where the keyboard is detachable. Speedwise the 'low end' 6300U model appears to be (on a single core basis) only 13% slower than the reasonably high spec three year old i5 desktop here (if the four vs two cores comes into play, then the desktop wins handsomely, of course). It's using an SSD, too, so the old days of slow hard drives doesn't apply either.

The screen resolution is huge, and whilst 12" isn't a huge screen, it's no worse than most X series Thinkpads.

11
3

Electrician cuts wrong wire and downs 25,000 square foot data centre

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: opps - Nope, Risk = Impact X Likelihood

Sure, and it's horrible for the people involved, but everyone needs to realise that government only cares about people on a general basis. If the impact costs substantially less than coping with truly exceptional weather, or being cynical, the cost of losing all the voters in the area, they're probably not going to see it as a realistic use of money. If you're absolutely, cast iron sure that this is truly exceptional unlikely to be repeated weather, then it isn't sensible to spend on it. The question is : are the projections accurate.

This is not the same as prior floods when either the money was not spent on defenses and failed precisely because of that, or worse, one particular council refused flood defense improvements as the residents didn't like the proposed visual impact : end result, the counties with improvements were fine, and the one without flooded. muppets..

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: opps - Nope, Risk = Impact X Likelihood

Well, no. I'd rather not defend politicians because most of them are oxygen thieves, but the real reasons are politics, and the realisation estimates might be wrong.

It's the same reason the UK has such poor infrastructure for dealing with snow, weather serious enough to cause problems is infrequent enough that spending money to defend against it costs substantially more than dealing with it at the time.

The planning in the Lake District was just fine - the flood defenses were improved, and they did not fail - they were overwhelmed in a few areas with exceptional weather. Again it comes down to the fact that improving defenses against an event that is that unlikely costs more than dealing with it at the time. The small number of years between the last flood is politically embarrassing but does not invalidate that point.

What will worry people is the possibility the estimates are wrong. The flood defenses were improved somewhat beyond the high watermark point at the last flood, and they did not break as far as I'm aware. If the estimates are right, people will grumble, get on with their lives, and it was correct not to spend substantially more on flood defenses. If this is a climate change issue affecting probabilities, the country is in trouble.

3
0

Mozilla backs away from mobile OS as Android looks invincible

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: OSdev is easy...

Note that Blackberry OS 10 *does* run Android apps (ok, 4.3 runtime, linked to Amazon app store by default, any apps using Google App Services needs hacking), and it's not setting the world on fire. Granted the phones aren't quite as cheap as the cheapo Android ones, and that's clearly why Microsoft are trying hard to target the low end as well as the high end.

0
0

Facebook wants a kinder, gentler end for SHA-1

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Yes and No

I specifically didn't say 'Nexus device' because the Galaxy Nexus and older appears not to have been patched for Stagefright. Course, at least it's rootable.

2
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Yes and No

Even with free operating systems, Apple can be sub par depending on which model is bought, although free upgrades is a recent development.

PC wise Vista SP1 (actually usable) was released February 2008, and is supported till 2017, so worst case is nine years of support. An older XP box would receive around 6.5-7 years of support (2007 to April 2014). If you're pedantic and insist Vista was usable out of the door (hoho), that's eleven years.

Looking at 2007 Macs, the August iMacs are still supported. However, anything else that year is stuck on Lion, so that's seven years of support (last patch date, about September 2014) and then the system is junk. Practically any Vista capable PC is capable of running later versions of Windows (yes, chargeable, but cheaper than a new computer).

Absolutely no argument with Android, the situation is disgraceful. If you buy an Android phone that isn't rootable, you are a fool, or should prepare to throw it away in 18 months. If you're lucky, the limit is four years, judging from the Google and Samsung stagefright patches.

3
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Muppets? You mean sensible companies. XP is completely unsupported for anything other than embedded users, and soon that will cease too.

XP was released in 2001 and people are complaining about support! The line has to be drawn somewhere. Whinge about Apple, instead, where the hardware is substantially more expensive than a PC, and the operating systems only supported for a few years.

5
2

Mozilla confirms its Firefox OS phones are dead

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: We don't need no steenking reading comprehension!

It's dead as a dead thing if it can't do catchup TV. OK, Youtube is usable in a browser, but it's a bit lacking otherwise for a smart TV.

0
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Mad.

No, you've got it all wrong, see!

You'll never make lots of money from a mail client, but you might make squilllions from mobile because Nokia, Apple, and Google managed it!

Forget that nowadays a phone that just phones and browses is as dead as Netware. Forget that what people actually care about is how to stay in touch with their friends, which means partly text but mostly Facebook, Twitter, Whatsapp, Kik, Snapchat, Instagram, Viber and others. That really good maps is now not on users' 'optional' list.

Forget that the large social media players/communicators are so protective of their APIs that it's becoming anti competitive, and the only effective way to access their services is to pay them, and bend to their rules or try and make your own app, and note it will break every fortnight as you play a game of cat and mouse.

It's absolutely fine to take your eye off the ball and waste resources on an OS, when your core browser eats memory and hangs even worse than Chrome when one tab misbehaves.

2
0

ASCII @dventure game NetHack gets first upgrade in ten years

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Somewhat amused/bemused

Try it and see if it works; the source was originally designed to work under anything from '95 upwards. Course, they may be targeting a development platform that no longer supports '9x because it's so old.

The text support in NT is much better than 9x, so it's better to use that.

Alternatively, it may be better to use one of the DOS extenders that supports Win32 APIs including the console, than bother using 9x..

0
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Izchak

'You have died. Corrupted by chaos'. Nice game, but tricky to get started in due to the difficulty and bugs.

Is it ok these days? The last time I played it, it was on OS/2..

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

To be fair, even if Nethack hasn't materially changed in the last few years, there are many other roguelikes - both extremely similar to Nethack, and more polished modern commercial games.

I suspect now the devteam have sorted various admin issues, new features will be released.

I've only ascended once, and I save scummed, so it doesn't count.. Generally I prefer to play either as a Gnomish wizard, or an archaeologist (I like tunneling).

I'd recommend checking out DoomRL if anyone hasn't already, it's very silly and a lot of fun.

1
0

If it still works six months from now, count yourself lucky

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Have to say I've been quite fortunate with PC hardware

Laptops have been especially resilient - but that's because they're Thinkpads, and not the low end shite.

Had a couple of hard drive failures, including one DOA. A couple of (cheap) power supplies, an 8800GTX (now that's a piece of hardware that will eventually fail, due to crap solder joints. I baked it in the oven three times to fix it, each extending its lifetime by another month, before finally giving up). A motherboard that had a failure in its cache module - that produced interesting errors.

Work wise it's only the low end laptops that were unusable after a few years, a fair few 10K/15K hot swap drive replacements, and the sensors on PowerEdge 2400s tend to fail after a number of years. One instance of RAID controllers corrupting the array, fortunately not so badly the data couldn't be recovered, and another of the controller itself failing by sending lots of interesting errors over the PCIe bus.

Really, it's only low end crap that's caused the problems. Cheap power supplies are an especially bad idea. High on the list is also generic designs thrown out by a nameless OEM, where the kit is basically functional, but six months later it needs flashing to improve security and the OEM has washed their hands of it. Add in almost every mobile phone ever two years after release; still 'works', but apps are now too resource hungry, and there's security exploits.

0
0

Alert after Intel Skylake chips, mobo sockets 'warp under coolers'

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Are people really still using huge heat pipe CPU cooler towers instead of water cooling?

A Hyper Evo 212 cooler doesn't look large enough to warp the CPU - it's the huge lumps of copper with a backplate that cause problems. A low end integrated water cooler is reasonably price competitive with a high end air cooler - I suspect in that case the air cooler will actually win, but be louder.

I stuck a water cooler on my main system purely because I was very short of space, and an air cooler blocked adjacent PCIe slots.

0
0

OopSSL: Pushme-Pullyou for OpenSSL patches

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Point gun at toes, pull trigger

Can't agree, the complete arsehats here are OpenSSL. Various OpenBSD developers were so horrified by the degree to which OpenSSL was broken, that they considered their own fork to be the only sensible option - they didn't do this lightly.

They've made the effort of fixing/streamlining OpenSSL to become LibreSSL, and changing OpenBSD to use LibreSSL instead of OpenSSL. They're not going to put it back in at a future stage.

OpenSSL have a reputation : a bad one. Some of their changes are wilfully dangerous, they sat on bugs (including ones with supplied patches) for years without applying them, and did no maintenance whilst their codebase rotted.

5
2

Brit filmmaker plans 10hr+ Paint Drying epic

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Optimal solution

Spring time for Hitler, in Gerrrmannny.....

1
0

Top Android app devs found exfiltrating mystery stealth packets

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: @Chris 125

I think you severely overestimate the number of low scores an app will receive for not being sufficiently restrictive in its set of permissions.

Look at Vista : it did mostly did The Right Thing. Windows 7 was made deliberately less secure, and needed an extra setting to restore the UAC to switch to the secure desktop and insist on a password.

Users did not appreciate this at all, why do you think they're going to give a rats arse that Facebook wants to control their camera, speaker, phone, address book, network and sd card?

3
1
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

You mean, in the same way that Android apps are supposed to cope with auto rotation, save state properly and handle things like hardware keyboards? Yet, they don't, even with very popular apps (web browsers, snapchat, yadda, yadda..)

2
0

OpenBSD's native hypervisor emerges

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Libvirt support

I'm sure the team would be glad of any code submissions. This is very new code and has only just gone into -current. At the moment I wouldn't expect it to do much other than run some versions of OpenBSD in a VM.

2
0

One-armed bandit steals four hours of engineer's busy day

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Hands up if...

I've done worse than that. I was at a large corporate establishment, needing to shut down a system running a bespoke application.

In front of me was a large desktop with a monitor on top, and a keyboard and mouse in front of it. It was displaying the application. I initiated shutdown, and it worked fine, sitting at the shutdown complete message.

I pressed the power button on the desktop. The desktop switched off.

The shutdown complete message stayed ON.

'oh, that's not the server' said the customer 'we put the keyboard/monitor for your server on top of this desktop because it's convenient. Your server is next door'

Always ask, even when it seems a stupid question.

4
0

BlackBerry Priv: After two weeks on test, looks like this is a keeper

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: What's so bad about Android?

No sensible way to easily see what's running in the background. No easy way to turn the background services on and off. No multiple profiles to manage all this by default.

Apps that don't save their state properly (especially web browsers) and re-load the entire page from the network when you switch back to it, when the request is now invalid.

General pain in the arse to get around (better with later releases). Apps dying unexpectedly. Inability to manage permissions.

Apps that update *all the fucking time* and gradually get worse.

I generally like Android, but let's not pretend it's perfect.

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

I've generally liked my Xperia Pro; unfortunately things don't stand still in the mobile world. The Facebook app consumed increasing amounts of CPU in later releases, and needed so many privileges I had to drop it in favour of a web browser. Web sites have increased in complexity, and despite the fact it's now on Lollipop (third party rom, sort of works..) the hardware just isn't capable.

For a year and a half to two years it was pretty good. Now it's just not fast or reliable enough - might be the third party rom, might be the aging hardware.

I can't say I'm an actual fan of the OS, though, it's mostly improved in each release but it reminds me of the early releases of Windows. Gingerbread was 3.1. Ice Cream Sandwich was 95. Kitkat was OSR2. Lollipop is Windows 98 (unpatched).

The last phones I really liked were Nokia not very smartphones, which had a passable web browser for a year or two, and some Java based apps, but couldn't cut it in the end.

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: Rubbish. Smartphones are genuinely useful.

..and I've just found a more definitive statement on that. The Neptune Pine is not water resistant. Bloody useless, then, I'll stick with my Casio sportswatch for running, for now.

0
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Rubbish. Smartphones are genuinely useful.

Making phone calls is in the extreme minority of things I do with my smartphone. Texting is somewhat more prevalent.

It's important to have access to Facebook, as that's where friends arrange events. Maps access to navigate is staggeringly useful. Being able to see if trains are running on time is vital. Checking your e-mail. Being able to download PDF e-tickets for events and display them, without printing them out. etc, etc. A friend uses theirs to learn Japanese on the go, and I'm ideally going to use mine to keep up with Russian.

It's not a toy. It genuinely improves my life. The only reason I'm looking at updating my current phone is that it's far too slow to access more modern web sites. It's cracked and peeling, not a fashion item.

As to watches, well, I've recently been looking at the Neptune Pine cheap on Morgan Computers. Yes, it's a ridiculous smart watch for every day use, but the key issue that decides if I bother to go for it seems to be the waterproofing. Without water resistance it's a toy, with water resistance it's not a watch - it's a cheap, portable running/biking/hiking activity monitor and map..

1
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: So near, and yet.. so far

Thanks, that's very kind. I don't run too many Android apps these days because the more background services my phone runs, the more unusable it is :(. I want to run more..

What I need : Decent web browser, National rail enquiries app, IMAP client with lots of mail stored locally as well as left remotely and support for multiple accounts without enforcing a unified inbox (currently using K9 Mail), maps, PDF viewer, a Facebook client that doesn't use up 100% cpu and need access to everything on your phone (I use the web interface currently because of this), Whatsapp, Kik Messenger, twitter client, ebay app, Youtube, Kindle client, FTP client, SSH client.

Nice to have : Skype, jabber client to access google talk, memrise, OS MapFinder, iPlayer for radio would be lovely, nethack, some sort of app to automatically download web pages to read later, and ideally random gaming apps off humble bundle (I did a bit of a search last night and found there are hacks to get Google play services working, which allows games such as Plants vs Zombies 2 to work).

On a practical note, how well does the PP fit in a jeans pocket?

Whilst on computers I have a bit of a preference for Windows and BSD, I don't think I'm quite so bothered on phones, provided they don't overly restrict what I can do.. I like Android, but I don't necessarily want Google to win the mobile phone wars.

0
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

So near, and yet.. so far

It looks good, and I want to buy it, but five hundred and sixty quid SIM free? Thank you, but no.

I note the Passport, which is now a year old, is available for 3-400 quid, which is more like it. Here's hoping the price drops once the exclusivity period ends.

There's no way this will ever get unlocked, so the assumption has to be the phone will be a doorstop inside two years, and will never get an update to Marshmallow.

My actual requirements are a physical keyboard, a great screen and being able to install random Android apps if need be. I would really like a removable battery too, but that dream may die with the Xperia Pro I'm currently using. I'm wondering if another alternative is the Passport - I have no attachment to the OS being Android, so long as the apps run..

1
0

Microsoft chief Satya drops an S bomb in Windows 10, cloud talk

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: The problem is not trust, but direction

It looks like Microsoft have updated their T&Cs to be somewhat more specific.

Is it something off this :https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/privacystatement/

or http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-10/windows-privacy-faq

or http://windows.microsoft.com/en-us/windows-10/feedback-diagnostics-privacy-faq

The latter contains

'Full data includes all Basic and Enhanced data, and also turns on advanced diagnostic features that collect additional data from your device, which helps us further troubleshoot and fix problems. When devices experience problems that are difficult to diagnose or replicate with Microsoft’s internal testing, Microsoft will randomly select a small number of devices, from those opted into this level and exhibiting the problem, from which to gather all of the data needed to diagnose and fix the problem (including user content that may have triggered the issue). If an error report contains personal data, we won’t use that information to identify, contact, or target advertising to you. This is the recommended option for the best Windows experience and the most effective troubleshooting.'

Which seems to address the user log on credentials you might be specifying. Other items specify that dumps 'may' contain user data - this has been true for years, it's just now it's more obvious. It's the same under every operating system - if a process dumps core, it may well have user data in it.

So, yes, I'd anticipate it's for analysing issues. When a process falls over, there's no time to sanitise data.

1
2
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: The problem is not trust, but direction

I used the word 'telemetry' very specifically, note I didn't say 'data'. I don't believe that Microsoft are deliberately snooping actual user data for malicious intent, in any case.

Telemetry has been around for well over a decade, with crash dumps sent to Microsoft, and then on to third party developers if it was their software that failed. Then MS have added submissions to monitor which help a user uses, and other applications/features of the OS.

This is generally a good idea, as it helps Microsoft target which areas on an OS to improve (the flip side is that if a feature is rarely used, it may be dropped..). It's definitely improved drivers, and helped with applications.

I don't think this is a huge deal with Windows 10 - it's similar to what happened with Ubuntu. The larger issue is Microsoft's unrelenting push to get people on to a rolling release operating system. Obviously they think the trade off in dis-satisfied users is acceptable with pushing out Windows 10.

1
2
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

The problem is not trust, but direction

This applies to pretty much all companies including Microsoft, but they're very popular, so it's worth bearing in mind. Apple are probably worse, but have less market share and business usage. Phone related operating systems are substantially more execrable.

If you're using relatively standard Win32 and other core technologies, including core parts of .NET, I would not be worried about developing and using a Microsoft solution. They have a solid OS, with underpinnings that generally improve in each release, and an excellent commitment to backwards compatibility.

As soon as anything whatsoever outside the above (i.e. something that is not too big to be changed) is used, the company's vision becomes important. If your way of working or product design doesn't ally with that, then there is a problem.

If the platform supporting your product isn't open source or you have insufficient internal expertise to maintain an open source platform, and your product or way of working is indelibly marked on that platform, you have a splendid 'opportunity' to frantically change your environment.

Need to use Remote Storage Manager? That lasted all the way from Windows 2000 to Vista, and then got dropped. Bits of Exchange have changed radically between 5.5 and 2000, and again between 2003 and 2007. The Microsoft vision for a client OS is for a frequently updated client, with a constant moderate speed Internet connection.

It's even worse if you're using minority technologies, such as with Windows Phone 7, or new technologies that have not proven themselves in the market place. Expect to have the rug pulled from under you.

None of this should be a surprise. The mobile direction of Windows has been happening for years. Telemetry has increased with each Windows release and is generally a good idea. Windows 8 has had a considerable number of patches that changed it, and the Windows Store apps regularly. Automatic updates has defaulted to 'download and apply' for years, so it's clear that Microsoft sees the trade off of patched systems vs a (relative) minority of broken systems as acceptable.

However, it's not going to change unless people pay for it, and by pay I mean 'deliberately go through the cost and manpower to re-implement on a platform that allies with your aims for the foreseeable future'. It's all about the apps, it always was, and always will be. The Internet connected world has considerably increased the amount of activities that are possible solely in a browser, but native apps are still necessary.

It may also - specifically talking about moving off Windows - involve more pain, and paying more for fewer, higher quality features. It also needs a compelling feature for people to move, and I should point out that anything mass market has a similar Internet connected, data/telemetry reporting, automatically updated design to Windows (I do not include any non end user mass market Linux distributions, or stuff like BSD, even if I personally like it)

(I'm tempted to put a VMWare rant in there as well, but the post is already long enough)

1
4

Patch this braXen bug: Hypervisor hole lets guest VMs hijack hosts

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Qubes need to get over themselves

Their article says, verbatim

'Admittedly this is subtle bug, because there is no buggy code that could be spotted immediately. The bug emerges only if one looks at a bigger picture of logic flows'

but 'On the other hand, it is really shocking that such a bug has been lurking in the core of the hypervisor for so many years'

Oh Do Fuck Off. No, this is not a splendid situation. Yes, plenty of operating systems have privilege escalation bugs. Yes, Xen is now quite old, complex and large. Yes, some things could be arranged better - find me a project without flaws.

If you depend on a project you should damn well contribute back to it, and as far as I can see Qubes do not. Their donation page - for an 'OS' that depends on Xen and Fedora, does not seem to donate back to them. Neither do they seem to contribute code to Xen (there are two matches for qubes, which appear to be borrowing code from qubes, not contributing to xen from qubes).

When everyone realised just how creaky the internals of OpenSSL were, the OpenBSD project got off their arses and created LibreSSL. I await Qubes' efforts in doing something similarly productive - write your own bloody hypervisor if it's so easy, FreeBSD have, and the other BSDs are trying related outings.

1
0

Online daters swindled out of £33m last year – police

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: What's a geezer got to do?

Women who are after your money are easy to spot, that's why..

Also, you've probably deleted e-mails from scammers. Why, yes, that 'god fearing' lady, and the one with pictures that looks suspiciously like a model/porn star must be real.

0
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

From reports I've seen, it's usually women that get conned.

Although, I'd have to say it's a fallacy to say they're 'convincing'. Bullshit. As soon as you've established some compatibility and that there are no major red flags, arrange a meeting in real life. If they ask for money, drop them. If they won't arrange a meeting, drop them and move on. No exceptions.

It may be that using the above method you reject real people in addition to fakers, but they're wasting your time anyway, so move on regardless.

0
0

Windows 10 out, users happy, PCs upgraded, my work here is done – says Microsoft OS chief

BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: @BinkyTheMagicPaperclip

I'm surprised, but my main gaming box triple boots between Windows 8 (DirectX is faster than on 7), XP (games that support EAX, and not OpenAL), and SteamOS, so I'll try a direct A-B comparison of Portal.

It's nice that Valve released SteamOS, but it was still pretty beta last time I checked. Didn't like CRT monitors (ok, not much of a surprise), not happy with 4:3 aspect ratio monitors (less forgivable), only output from my sound card via optical (a pain), and claimed that numerous games were fine with an XBox controller, when they were unusable.

It's possible Humble Bundle have done more for Linux, at least a while back.

As I said, it's not that this is bad - it's just that it's more a treat for an avid Linux fan, than a dedicated gamer. It's a lot better than OS/2 ever managed..

0
0
BinkyTheMagicPaperclip
Silver badge

Re: well I like the spending time with family bit

What Steam is doing is to somewhat increase the number of Linux games, usually with worse performance and less features than the Windows versions, especially lying about whether games work with controller support. If you're a die hard Linux fan, it's great, but as a platform agnostic gamer it's a sore disappointment.

Operating system sales, like consoles, are driven by app availability. There needs to be a compelling reason to move, and for the majority of people Linux does not provide that. Users will simply stay on Windows 7/8, sales of 10 will decline, and Microsoft will be forced to release 11/10.1 with concerns addressed - as happened with 8.

Until you see Adobe test the water with a Linux app, it'll be business as usual. Even if people start to shift to Linux, they'll be running Windows software in VMs for years - there is no such thing as a sudden change.

There's a reason it took OS X six releases before they dropped compatibility layers..

0
4

Page:

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018