* Posts by Steven Raith

2207 posts • joined 26 Jun 2007

Dell BIOS update borks PCs

Steven Raith
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Frank,

Another said, "Let's hope Dell fixes it for free, the Dell Update software that was prepackaged, might I say, reminded me to update constantly. So I did... Well, I am not very happy with the update, so 2 stars out of 5."

So it sounds like it was Dells own update software that mandated the update happened.

Steven R

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User loses half of a CD-ROM in his boss's PC

Steven Raith
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The Slo Mo guys on Youtube tried this. It looks pretty damned cool at 170,000fps.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zs7x1Hu29Wc

Enjoy.

Steven R

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Troll it your way: Burger King ad tries to hijack Google Home gadgets

Steven Raith
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Re: Computer Misuse Act?

Interesting aside, I hear google has blocked the specific frequency of this ad to prevent it from working.

Clickity

So I'm guessing someone there kind of agrees with me/us, at least to some degree...

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Computer Misuse Act?

Grikath, I tend to agree with you to a large extent - it's more a point of interest on the legalities of it than me calling to arms the EFF and demanding that BK get sued into the middle of next week.

Steven "distracting himself from other more annoying, less fun things with this" R

Edit, because I missed the window on the original post - by 'not illegal' I was thinking 'not quite the same as breaking into an office' or hacking a network, but the unauthorised use/exploitation of a known feature on many devices is not massively dissimilar, no?

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Steven Raith
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Computer Misuse Act?

Isn't this the equivalent of unauthorised use of your computer?

It's effectively the same as leaning over to your desk, and typing in a search request. Yes, it might not be illegal, but it's unauthorised use of your system, and as it appears to be an auto-roll ad, it's likely unavoidable to the layman without an adblocker/noscript.

It's been a while since I read it in depth - anyone got an opinion on this? I'd be very interested to hear whether I am (or how far I am) off the mark on this.

That, and it's just a plain interesting idea that's tickling my brain.

El Reg Commentards - entertain me, you lovely misanthropes!

Steven R

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Honor phone for paupers goes upmarket, assails flagships

Steven Raith
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Joke

Re: pronunciation?

It's "Huawei" obviously.

Steven "Sorry, someone had to do it" R

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New plastic banknote plans now upsetting environmental campaigners

Steven Raith
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If we use politicians, then for once I'd support quantitative easing.

More meat for the grinder, eh?

Steven R

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Boffins reveal how to pour a perfect glass of wine with no drips. First step, take a diamond...

Steven Raith
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I use a special glass to prevent drips.

It's genius. The glass is about a foot tall, and is normally topped with either cork, or a screwcap.

Solves every problem.

Steven "tramp" R

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Good news, everyone! Two pints a day keep heart problems at bay

Steven Raith
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Re: A question

All right, calm down, Mr Hague, we all heard the stories about you back in the day...

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Steven Raith
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Re: A question

That's what interests me - it seems unlikely that it's just having a measurable blood/alcohol level that's the cause.

i'd guess things like socioeconomic status, social life (IE not being an anxiety riddled shut in like me) would have a reasonable impact, too.

Steven R

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Lawyer defending arson suspect flees court with pants on fire

Steven Raith
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Re: "not part of his defence strategy"?

If he did do it deliberately, he'd have to have shorted the cell out or severely abused it, as batteries - as a rule - don't just pop. They get shorted, overheated, or otherwise abused and then fail, typically through thermal runaway and venting.

There are exceptions (poor manufacturing practises, as seen by Samsung recently) but these generally don't affect the sort of cells used in e-cigs, which are normally cylindrical and are a mature, stable tech - not bleeding edge, trying to be as thin as they can flat cells.

If he had the cell in his pocket with a length of chain, his keys, or similar, then all he'll have proved is that his client may have done the same, rather scuppering his case.

It does all smell a bit fishy, frankly.

Steven R

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Skype-on-Linux graduates from Alpha to Beta status

Steven Raith
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Re: Skype has been on the decline ever since Microsoft bought it.

Don't forget the complete lack of ability to search recent conversations, nor any local caching of local conversations (that I can find)

Someone told you something a month ago in Skype chat? Forget looking for it like you can on the Windows and Mac clients. The functionality just isn't there to store anything older than that, and there's no search option, full stop.

Bloody annoying.

And if I'm wrong about this, someone say so because I'd be ecstatic to be wrong about this.

Steven R

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Amazon's AWS S3 cloud storage evaporates: Top websites, Docker stung

Steven Raith
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Re: Will the re-write history?

The status page may be running on AWS gear.

Oh the hypocrisirony.

Clicky for tweety that says "The dashboard not changing color is related to S3 issue. See the banner at the top of the dashboard for updates."

Steven "tempting fate" R

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A non-Standards Soviet approved measure of weight? Sod off, BBC!

Steven Raith
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Re: What rot

Mate, up there, the sheep whistle in the wind.

And not from the mouth.

Steven "enjoy your dinner" R.

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Steven Raith
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What rot

Everyone knows you can only weigh Kelpies in ChildSols - a factor of the number of children it has caught, and how naughty they were in life.

Steven R

PS: Having been born and raised up in the Highlands (no really, look for Thrumster on Google Maps) I was told that kelpie stories (among others) were sometime used by people who were caught, er, bothering farm animals - they're shapeshifters don't you know, that pony was a beautiful woman last night! - back before the renaissance hit the far north and science and skepticism overtook religious dogma and folklore for explaining things.

You know, around twenty years ago....

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Vizio coughs up $2.2m after its smart TVs spied on millions of families

Steven Raith
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Re: 20 cents

Oh, you can guarantee they made a fuckton more than that per user from the data.

I vote that fines should be the turnover made from selling such data, then increase it by at least one order of magnitude.

Made $55m in data sales? That'll be $550m fine payable immediately, or C level execs get a minimum of a year in jail, thanks.

A couple of high profile major profit losses (or, ideally, bankruptcies and jail time for some of the smaller outfits who take the piss like this) would focus the mind a bit.

You know, you'd hope.

Well, I doubt it. I just want to watch the world burn.

Steven R

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'Exploding e-cig cost me 7 teeth, burned my face – and broke my sink!'

Steven Raith
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Re: Stored Energy

I'm pretty sure I stated, quite clearly, that etiquette can be a problem with some people.

Etiquette is not something we typically base legislate on, because that would be utterly bloody barking, however.

Also, regarding your analogy, do you have your own personal air supply everywhere you go? Because the only difference between from a health standpoint between breathing in vapour and breathing in someone elses breath is that you can see it. Do you also hide indoors when it's frosty outside? All that vapour coming from peoples lungs! How rude of them to breath on me!

I will say again, to be utterly clear for you as you seem to have such poor reading comprehension, that if someone is blowing clouds in your face, that's an issue of manners - nothing else.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: A "Twisted Vapers RDA" is just the "tank"

No, they're not. Kids are not using these devices, with the exception of existing and former smokers. That is backed up by all the population level data, without exception, so if the way e-cigs are being marketed is 'attractive to children' then it's spectacularly failing.

That, and reports of laundry/washing up capsules poisoning children with their pretty colours are several times higher than reported poisonings from e-liquid across all age groups.

But yet, I don't see demands for plain packaging and no marketing of 'summer breeze' and 'glade forest', after all, that sounds like some sort of fantasy land that kids would want to visit, which is just as stupid an argument as restricting sweet flavours because The Kids might like them.

It's a mostly empty argument completely diverts from the absolute fact that more children have died from ingesting laundry tablets (two in the last couple of years, dozens of extremely serious issues like respiratory failure and coma), or have died from cigarette related fires last year than have ever died from accidental ingestion of e-liquid - because the latter number is, at the last count, one in a decade; reportedly caused by someone storing a nicotine based liquid in a non-childproof bottle, within use of a one year old (!), which appeared to be being used for self-mixing - not a retail bottle.

You can try to regulate for stupidity, but I think one incident in a decade (and fractional amounts of reported poisonings compared to other perfectly accepted consumer goods) suggests that this is less of a problem than you'd like to believe it is.

Are there risks? Yes, everything has risks. Are they even remotely justifiable in banning flavours or seriously restricting marketing to adults, especially when compared to the unintended consequences, which is less people cutting down or giving up smoking - which I remind you, kills millions a year, directly?

When you look at the big picture rather than focus on the minutiae, not even fucking close.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: A "Twisted Vapers RDA" is just the "tank"

It started getting called 'juice', but then certain more puritanical public health wonks - with absolutely no sense of perspective - started claiming that devices and consumables that were almost without exception are (and always have been) being sold to adult smokers, were somehow marketing to children.

Because it was being called juice. And they still claim that because some flavours are sweet, that is also marketing to children.

I'm not even joking - that's literally how pathetic and utterly, unforgivably desperate to demonise these products many in the public health world are.

Of course, some liquid manufacturers will do fucking idiotic things like infringing copyright on Pokemon and suchlike, but they typically don't last very long; no-one in the industry will stock that stuff, because - oddly enough - most vape shops don't want a visit from trading standards/the feds for even being perceived as possibly trying to attract kids; it's not like they need to, there's plenty of smokers and they're a far easier sell.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Was that vaper built by Samsung?

With home made mods, it's a bit like home made firearms - typically the person making it will have a good idea what they're doing and will know the risks (if not, I'm sure there are plenty of slots left in the Darwin Awards) as making even a mech mod requires a reasonable amount of engineering knowledge to turn the tube, thread the caps, etc.

With box mods, you typically have a MOSFET in there that will tend to burn out before the batteries pop; although that's not guaranteed, it's generally a truism that 'series/parallel' mods (without full protection circuitry) are less of a risk than a pure mech, particularly if they're in parallel rather than series.

I'll hold my hands up and say I've been out of the MOSFET game for a while though - I'm sure there are people more experienced than me who could wax on about that in more detail if they feel like it.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Stored Energy

The only real issue with passive vaping is etiquette; there's no evidence found of anything to worry about with regards to health (never mind toxicologically significant, second hand vapour is barely biologically detectable in people).

Etiquette is a concern however, because people cloudchasing on buses and the like is what engenders that kind of negative attitude towards people who have given up smoking, like we've been told to for years, in record numbers.

I've been given shit before for saying that the "snap-back and mech mod" crowd are, by a wide margin, the biggest problem that vaping has besides puritanical regulatory issues; I stand by that, to be blunt.

They're a tiny minority of users, but when most people think 'vaper', they think of someone who puffing a massive cloud and annoying people; whereas the reality is, the average vaper is Mildred Overfinch, from just down the road from you, who's given up a thirty year habit and can now walk up the hill without having to stop twice on the way to catch her breath. And who stealth vapes on the bus so well you don't even notice it....

The issue is that the puritanical arm of public health has tried to:

Find notable harm from e-cigs to the user; this has failed.

Find any harm from e-cigs to bystanders; this has failed

Find notable harm from nicotine to the user; this has failed

Find any harm from nicotine to bystanders; this has failed

Find a verifiable (IE non-random) gateway from e-cigs to lit tobaco; this has utterly failed, to the extent where research is deliberately misconstrued to try to show otherwise.

Now they are pushing to use e-cig relate fires and battery venting injuries to push their agenda (ignoring the fact, of course, that everyone who vapes is someone who doesn't smoke, reducing the number of cigarette related fires as it goes - and they aren't uncommon), and if (a small minority) of vendors and users don't stop pissing about and taking risks with these devices, it'll only take a few pictures like the ones in this article to get a WASPY, puritanical public health minister and the foaming-at-the-mouth kind of press to push for further restrictions on e-cigs (And of course they won't make a distinction between mech mods and regulated mods) to 'protect the children' and it'll fucking work.

As I've mentioned in these sorts of threads before, I've been neck deep in the public health, political and advocacy side of e-cigs for a good while now (As have many others) and we see these patterns repeat, time and time again. And it often works.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Battery problems aside..

Unicornpiss, it's not a 'health' aid; it's a harm reduced way of getting nicotine. A vastly harm reduced way.

Also, nothing is superheated; airflow cools the vapour as it leaves the coils. If you don't get enough airflow, the vapour tastes fucking acrid, and that's something you do once or twice, then rapidly learn how not to do it.

You can think what it 'sounds' like all you want, but I'd recommend having a good skim through the summaries in this report, and reading back to any that catch your eye.

Royal College Of Physicians - Nicotine Without Smoke - a 200 page report citing more than 180 papers discussing the pros and cons of e-cigs on personal, regulatory and population level, etc.

In all seriousness, despite being quite weighty (and by a wide margin, the most comprehensive report of it's kind) it's surprisingly readable and accessible.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: The actual problems here...

AC, a freshly charged battery is still 'stressed', especially if it's been charged at high current; current in/current out stresses the cell so it's best to give it a bit of time to settle. In a multi-cell regulated mod running moderate power (say, 50w/12A over two cells) it's not a problem; pulling 50A from a freshly charged cell increasing the risk of overstressing the cell and raising it's internal temperature to the point where it can hit thermal runaway, though.

I'll grant you, I'm no chemist, but people with more experience than me in these matters have raised this as a danger point and I tend to trust them.

Fajensen, most e-cigs aren't *that* complex, and mechs are the exception, rather than the rule; normally you have

a battery or power source (most of which are simple 'select the power to suit your taste and capabilities of your atomiser)',

A tank to contain the liquid,

this tank contains an atomiser, that wicks the liquid and heats it to a vapour,

A charger (be it a USB cable for a device with a built in battery, or a seperate 18650 charger),

A liquid you like the taste of and has an amount of nicotine you're happy with (even zero nic)

This is barely any more of a faff than rolling cigarettes (papers, baccy, filters, lighter, ashtray) and only slightly more complex than buying a packet of fags. Once you find a setup that works for you, you just set and forget with 95% of devices; the only thing most newbies change over time is nicotine strength/liquid flavour as they wean off the fags and get their sense of taste back.

Mechs are like a Meccano set of customisable parts, so they appeal to a certain type of hobbyist, sadly not all those who find them appealing (nor those who sell to those types) actually understand the electrical forces involved; hence we get problems like that in the article.

Thing is, (outside of user error, which is rare, hence newsworthy - I'll grant you that shrapnel to the face ain't exactly ideal) it's nowhere like as bad for you as the fags. In fact, evidence of notable harm to end users of these device, even after a decade of use, is effectively non-existent; the risks appear to be comparable with many a lifestyle choice like having a strong coffee or having a predeliction for fried, rather than grilled foods etc - that is, minimal in the grand scheme of things.

Three months of cigarette use would show a laundry list of negative side effects. Side effects of e-cig use after several years are negligible, and in existing smokers (who are the vast, vast majority of users) they're getting health benefits over their extant condition.

So you stop smoking, without 'stopping smoking', as other than not killing you, the usage is pretty similar. So the slight extra complication is totes worth it.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: ecig explosion in mans face caught on cctv (different person than this story)

There's always a man,

There's always a mech,

There's always a lighthouse.

Wait, what?

Steven "still making stupid jokes" R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Stored Energy

A: it was banned, ostensibly, for health reasons

B: If you're affected by the tiny amount of nicotine in second hand vape, then never, ever touch a member of the nightshade family again - you'll get a damned sight more nicontine in your bloodstream from that, than you will from sitting in a room with a cloudchaser - not just because they tend to use zero nic (to avoid a niccy rush).

There is no toxicological or public health based reason to ban vaping in public places. There is an argument about ettiquette, but not about health.

It's not a case of there being no evidence of harm from second hand vapour, it's a case of there being good evidence of a lack of harm from second hand vapour.

A subtle, but important distinction.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: 3000 mAh battery?

Some very basic research would show you that mechanical mods particularly, but most e-cigs that provide moderate levels of power (to allow for a good replication of smoking - or a better experience than smoking, the more likely to get someone off the fags) draw rather more current than a cellphone, which over it's SOC will try to draw less than 10w at any time.

A mech mod sitting at 0.1A will try to pull 40A from the cell.

3000mah doesn't last long in one of those.

The flipside is, my 'daily' device, a 4000mah regulated device with an atomiser that is perfectly happy (for my usage - not everyones) at 13w, will last the better part of two days before it needs charging.

Horses for courses, and one of the reasons why these things have a very high conversion rate with smokers; everyone has their particular brand (Marlboro, Lambert and Bambert, Lucky Strike), everyone has their favoured 'device' (premade smokes, tobacco, perhaps a nice pipe?), something NRT and inhalators simply can't replicate.

The question is, is the risk wort...oh, for gods sake, fags kill half a million a year and start 90,000 fires in the US alone, it's worth it.

Steven R

PS: If you want to boggle the mind, you can get a 300w (max) regulated mod that can take four of those batteries - so 12,000Ah. Apparently capable of regular use for two days straight at 120w....

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Steven Raith
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When people talk about the unintended consequences of bad regulation, this is exactly what they're talking about.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Was that vaper built by Samsung?

There is, but I very much doubt the four battery one is a mech. If it's got a screen on it, it is, basically, perfectly safe unless abused - and they're very, very hard to abuse by accident in a manner likely to cause problems.

That's why pretty much every incident like this you see invovles:

Loose batteries in a pocket with change

A misconfigured mechanical mod

Badly made, market stall crap with shitty, badly made chargers (normally using a 510 connection, not USB - USB chargers are mature, you see....)

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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BigClive is awesome, and I thoroughly recommend him to anyone who has a curiousity about how things that are vaguely electrical work (and, occasionally, can be made to go pop).

The irony in this instance is that the guy bought the mod from a shop, and had the shop maintain it for him - until the regs came along that said that if the shop changes the coils for him, they become a tobacco manufacturer (because it's the FDA, so of course that makes sense to them).

Shop refuses to service device, device gets poorly maintained, device goes pop.

Problem is, mech mods are, by their nature, extremely cheap to make. They're literally a tube of metal with threaded socket for the RDA ('tank' part that isn't actually a tank yadda yadda) and a threaded cap with a button at the other end to make contact with the battery. So you'll likely never see them disappear from the interweb bargain bizarres; best we can hope for is they end up as under the counter devices; that is, if someone really wants one, they can ask for one.

But Average Joe/Jane Smoker (who are, statistically, >90% of users) can come in and still buy a perfectly safe regulated mod that will perform just as well, without the risk of a faceful of industrial blowback.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: So...

Ask yer dad, he'd know.

Steven "On a roll. No, not your mum" R.

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Steven Raith
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Re: So...

Silly Wolfetone, I'm not battery powered!

Steven "even more obvious joke" R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Was that vaper built by Samsung?

I posted a surmisation of what likely happened above - see here:

clicky for the deviod of scroll wheels or patience

Long story short, more likely a buildup, then rapid release, of pressure (thanks to a badly maintained mod/coil causing a dead short), rather than the coil doing anything weird.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Damaged his sink?

Twas a hybrid mod, and if it was a cheap one, there's a good chance that unlike a good one, there was not sufficient venting at the bottom, so when it popped, it blew the threads out at the top (Rather than venting out relatively safely), and forced the RDA into his face, rapidly followed by a plume of ignited fumes.

It's rare that good quality batteries will vent that quickly, but if it was a freshly charged cell with a dead short, it's not impossible. Which is why you don't take a battery out of the charger and use it in a high current application - not even a high powered torch (which also use 18650s).

Quite likely that he slammed the sink with the mod while trying to get it away from his face (rather than from the force of the venting/pressure buildup).

It certainly fits with the injuries he sustained (and after that happened, it's quite possible he slammed the mech into the sink by accident as he reacted to what had just happened, while trying to get it away from him).

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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The actual problems here...

...well, actually, there are a few.

First of all, he took a battery fresh from the charger, and chucked it into a low-resistance mech - that's not a great idea as the battery is a bit chemically volatile following a fresh charge. This is fine in most cases, but in high current devices, it can be dangerous. This is the nature of lithium based batteries in near-capacity-draw situations.

Secondly, his mech was a hybrid - where the positioning of the posts at the bottom of the atomiser are critical to prevent a thermal runaway from a dead short. Hybrids are a fucking stupid design, because it's stupidly easy to get a dead short. You can probably work out how from this image.

Third - and this is the second worst kicker - up until recently, his shop had been maintaining his mod, including building his coils to a safe resistance, checking the clearance of the RDA pin, etc.

They had recently stopped doing this because the upcoming US FDA regulations say that if they do that, they become a tobacco products manufacturer, which would either bankrupt them, get them shut down, or both. So to avoid this risk, they stopped servicing e-cigs, just selling them - leaving the customer to DIY it. The FDA has only recently clarified that yes, shops can change pre-made atomisers, but the wording of the rule means that it's technically impossible for a shop to work on a mech like this due to it using handmade coils, and not be in breach of the letter of the law.

And the joint biggest problems here - by his own admission (later in in the postings on his FB page), he wasn't entirely sure what he was doing when it came to the maintenance of the device, because he'd left everything for the shop to sort out; he thought he was doing everything correctly, but sadly wasn't.

The other side of that, is that when customer comes in asking for a hybrid mech mod, the shop didn't ask "Why?".

Like kit cars, sporting rifle shooting and motorbike track days, hybrid mods are something that are always - without exception - best left to those who can seek them out, and demonstrate that they understand the risks.

Sadly, some shops really don't seem to give a fuck.

Which pisses me off, because if you look through that FB post (where all of the above info comes from) you'll see dozens of people inferring that they'll go back to ciggies, and sharing it saying they're going back to smoking because it's 'safer'.

So a slow handclap to the shop for failing to do any due diligence on their sales (if you're having to rebuild someone's mech for them because they can't do it, then they shouldn't have the mech, and that goes doubly so for a hybrid - end of story) and a slightly more sympathetic one for the unfortunate user for not doing the research on a device that in normal use basically runs as a near dead short on a cell that has about as much kick as a 4/10 shotgun shell if you get it wrong and pop it.

There's a good argument that mechs are, these days, irrelevant even in the low-ohmage world, just as they became a few years ago for e-cigs that had a resistance of >1ohm - yes, you used to get mech mods for 1.8ohm devices, before pocketable 20w regulated mods made them look pointless.

These day it's quite easy to get a three or four cell mod that will (just like in the >1 ohm world a few years ago) make any mech look like a complete waste of time, while also being effectively unbustable in normal use - short circuit protection, undercurrent protection, etc - while also being able to kick out 300w, more than most mechs can safely provide, regardless of what anyone tells you about their 'pulse' current.

I fully expect that we'll see pictures of this chap plastered all over the news for a while (because the rarity of such events is still newsworthy), all while every day three house fires are started by normal cigarettes.

In London alone....

Steven R

PS: If you're interested in seeing what informed people other than me have to say about this, I'd recommend this video from VapourTrails.tv on Monday, where this was covered in detail, by people extremely familiar with the tech and the risks involved.

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Opera scolds stale browsers with shocking Neon experiment

Steven Raith
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Re: "cool effects..."

You say that, but I'm fairly sure I remember back in the day, Opera having a built in email client and (possibly?) a download/torrent client.

We're talking mebbe a decade ago, though.

Anyone is free to correct me, but this feels a bit 'That which is old is new again', etc.

Steven R

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Boffins turn timid mice into psycho killers – by firing lasers into brains

Steven Raith
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Cats will get a similar upgrade.

They will be:

I'm too young to die

Hey, not too rough

Hurt me plenty

Ultra-Violence

and

Nightmare!

I'm still working on IDKFA, but we think it can be triggered by trying to tickle the cats tummy when it's dozing - that often breaks out all it's weapons at once, in my experience.

(Sorry.)

Steven R

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Fedora 25: You've got that Wayland feelin', oh, that Wayland feelin'

Steven Raith
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I use Ubuntu 16.10 and have an AMD R280 GPU.

Shall I put the kettle on for us?

Steven R

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Programmer finds way to liberate ransomware'd Google Smart TVs

Steven Raith
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Re: No smarts thanks. Gimme TAS* anytime

I prefer DAAR in professional/polite environs; Dumb As A Rock.

Same difference though. Cheapy Celcius (same as the Polaroid/Blaupunkt tellys - basic 1080p panel with no smart tat added on) 37" panel for Chromecasting podcasts to via Youtube/Twitch/etc.

It's not even got an aerial plugged in - I've not watched broadcast telly in years and don't think I've missed much as a result. In short, it's a big, cheap monitor and little more.

The (live) smart telly interfaces I've used at other peoples homes have, er, not exactly inspired me with confidence.

Steven R

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It's round and wobbles, but madam, it's a mouse pad, not a floppy disk

Steven Raith
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No story to share, but...

...this:

"“Robert” sent a story of an emergency he was asked to fix, after a server admin mistook a spring-loaded power switch for a floppy drive's eject disk button.

The server admin wanted Robert to walk around the office – a trading room - and have all the traders save their work, ASAP. While Robert did that, the server admin would keep his finger on the button, because to release it would turn off the server."

Is it just me who nodded sagely and thought 'good lad' for the smart thinking of the server admin? Yeah, he massively cocked up, but at least he had the foresight to think of the consequences and mitigate them as best he could.

I didn't really start in the desktop IT world till floppy disks were becoming less popular (I did some ISP support work in the early 2000s, then moved into desktop support in the mid 2000s, although I had been messing with computers since the mid 90s in some form) so I missed a lot of these old skool shenanigans...

Steven R

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Woman rescues red pepper Donald Trump from vegetarian chilli

Steven Raith
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No, that was our Prime Minister, in a pigs mouth.

Hoi, what sounds like MI6 black helicopt

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Steven Raith
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Only one thing to say

Jesus fuck, that's me having nightmares tonight.

And not just because I'm scottish, and that piece of food isn't deep fried.

Eesh.

Steven R

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Tobacco giant predicts the end of smoking. Panic ensues

Steven Raith
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Well, when they ban everything but cigalikes in the US, they'll sell shitty e-cigs, I'd imagine.

Because PMI and their ilk will be the only ones able to afford to take devices to market - none of the indies will be able to afford to go through the (lit tobacco oriented) testing process, estimated at >$1m per device, or per liquid (which includes differing nicotine strengths - so one flavour in four strengths, circa $4m).

Most independent liquid producers have ten flavours in four strengths.

Do the math.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: I just do not trust tobacco companies at all

I think a lot of it is context awareness. IE I work in an office with glass walls on one side open to the rest of the staff, with four other people. The office is big enough where I can have a couple of draws on my (small, mouth to lung) device without fogging the room up or annoying anyone. To the extent where they'll occasionally ask me to puff around a bit of it to mask the smell of a hot lunch we've ordered in, etc.

Now, if I were to be using my monster rebuildable tank in here, one lung hit would cause one hell of a cloud, and a few would probably fog the room up noticably.

So twice a day, I give myself a break from my monitor, pop out to the car park and fog that up instead for a few minutes.

Generally speaking, most of these issues can be sorted with a 'vape with consideration' sign at the front door of a building, with explicit exemptions for some areas; I don't vape in our colo space at all, for example.

Nothing too complicated about it, it's all about common sense.

Also, point of interest, the tobacco industry has only a partial foothold in the vaping market (crappy cigalikes etc) - and they're obsessed with expensive to run closed systems. Almost every device you see people using on the street will be from an independent manufacturer, who have no ties to the Tobacco industry whatsoever.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Vaping does normalise smoking

Smoking is already considered normal.

And has never been 'un-normal'.

There is absolutely no evidence of a gateway effect (which is what the normalisation argument always points to), there never has been; the only gateway the evidence shows - and population level data is good evidence - is of a gateway for smokers, away from smoking.

Relevant data from ASH, an anti smoking, and frankly anti-vaping org

"Use of the devices is confined to current and ex-smokers and use amongst never smokers remains negligible and has not changed since 2012. Over time the proportion of current electronic cigarette users who smoke tobacco has fallen and the proportion who are ex-smokers has risen (figure 1)."

" In March 2013 an additional survey of children aged 11 to 18 was conducted, the ASH Smokefree Youth survey. This has been repeated annually since then. For use among children please see the ASH factsheet. In summary the ASH Smokefree Youth Survey shows that regular use of electronic cigarettes amongst children and young people is rare and is confined almost entirely to those who currently or have previously smoked"

You can have your 'concerns' and 'worries', I'll stick with actual evidence using data relevant to the population, by an organisation that is tacitly (and in the past has been openly) anti-vaping, because even the don't agree with your assessment of the situation.

"Today they'd love vaping to be allowed everywhere, including No Smoking areas, because it makes it harder to spot anyone smoking tobacco"

That would be because it's not tobacco, and it's not smoking. This is fairly straightforward stuff.

"try distinguishing a vaper from a smoker on CCTV. "

You look for hte one who's always leaving a trail of smoke behind them. That's the thing with lit tobacco - it doesn't go out between puffs.

That, and you know, cigarettes don't have a fist sized, brightly coloured battery pack attached to them...

"Besides, who knows what's in the vaping goo? Of course, they'd never flavour it with anything addictive or something that research showed created a craving for tobacco, would they?"

The people doing serious research into harm from vaping, and who can't find any notable harm, even to the end user, and strong evidence of a lack of harm (or barely any interaction) to bystanders.

And all your arguments? Half truths and outright lies pushed by none other than the public health bodies who are repeatedly told that their facts are out of date, being taken out of context, or flat out lies.

What industry does that remind you of...?

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Nicotine

The health benefits are likely from removal of harm.

Going from not being able to climb three flights of stairs without wheezing like a broken pair of bellows (smokers), to being able to do it twice in ten minutes without really caring (vaping, likely this IQOS thing too), is a health benefit, I'd argue...

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: iQOS and cannabis

Pretty sure dry 'herb' burners have been a thing for a couple of years now; IQOS is simply a big tobacco manufacturers attempt at it, using pre-packaged tobacco 'nubs' - functionally, they do the same thing.

Bit like Vype e-cigs and regular vaping devices; The vype is based around slightly older tech, arguably more simpler and more stable, better suited to be 'certified' by public health than the bleeding edge stuff that most vapers use.

Big tobacco vape devices, for example, haven't embraced temperature control as yet.

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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Re: Nw for the unanswered question ..

Addiction without harm is not really a problem. Look at coffee - most people get seriously grumpy if they don't get their morning sup, but most people woudln't consider that a moral dilemma because caffiene is generally agreed to Not Be A Problem from a health standpoint. This device doesn't produce actual smoke, which is what does >90% of the damage of smoking, natch.

You can argue financial harm, but people who move from smoking to a heat not burn product like IQOS were already in financial harm anyway, and the price of entry is a bit high for people to start on these (£45, £8 for 20 'refill' sticks).

Mix that with nicotine actually not being notably addictive when not mixed in with some of the more interesting components of tobacco smoke (which this device doesn't generate, from all accounts) then there's a reasonable chance that it should be less addictive, and so should be less of an ethical issue in terms of use.

I'm not as up on the IQOS as I am on vaping, hence there being a lot of 'should' in this post ;-)

Steven R

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Steven Raith
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It's not impossible, frankly - although I'd be interestedin seeing a year quitrate; most quitrates are based on 30 days, I'm not sure what PMIs data is.

Bear in mind I'd also wager that rate isn't Smoke cigs > use IQOS > stop everything. It'll be smoke cigs > use IQOS. if IQOS is legitmately some 90% safer, then you're getting 90% of the benefits of quitting, without the <5% quit rate that quitting has.

If you have 70% of people getting 90% harm reduction, that's a massive, staggering improvement over <5% of people getting 100% harm reduction from a public health standpoint.

For my brother, for example, it might be useful - he's never seen the appeal of normal vape products, so these heat-not-burn ones, which still taste of baccy (something vapes just can't do Because Physics, might be relevant to him.

I'll post something longer in here tonight, methinks.

Steven R

4
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Has Canadian justice gone too far? Cops punish drunk drivers with NICKELBACK

Steven Raith
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Re: Lightweights

"A continuous loop of jingle bell rock will make them repent"

Not if they've worked in retail over Christmas it won't. They'll be immune.

Steven "worked at PC world for presumed sins in a past life. Over Christmas" R

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Microsoft ❤️ Linux? Microsoft ❤️ running its Windows' SQL Server software on Linux

Steven Raith
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Re: Drawbridge

We're talking about GUI vs command line, etc, but yesterday I had to use Powershell to get replication to work in a HyperV platform because the GUI wouldn't find the correct certificate for HTTPS authentication.

At least on Linux servers, you don't get a shock when the GUI doesn't work properly, because you don't expect to be using a gui full stop.

It also doesn't try to reboot itself once every couple of weeks unless you perform some low level registry hacks....although I believe they (eventually) hotfixed that.

Steven R

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