* Posts by Luiz Abdala

205 posts • joined 3 Jul 2007

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He, He, more gassy whoppers: Toshiba spreads 12TB, 14TB drives across gaming and NAS disks

Luiz Abdala

Re: Evolve or die.

Nothing prevents you from adding two of these 14TB behemoths to another RAID 0, or turn them into a raid 5 or 6, and never have to worry again about speed OR storage size for at least 5 years. win-win.

Plus, if everything is on Steam, you could even suffer a catastrophic failure and... just download all of the games again, (if the system drive is a separate one), without losing a single bit.

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Tesla autopilot saves driver after he fell asleep at wheel on the freeway

Luiz Abdala
IT Angle

Re: "...detect if police are trying to pull you over."

Make the police sirens emit a fax tone, and put microphones in the car with a modem plugged to it.

A one-way digital signal is embedded in the 9600-baud carrier tone, ordering the autonomous car to slow down and pull over, like a kill switch. Every autonomous car within the siren's range will hear the signal, and offer the driver a chance to IGNORE the command in 60 seconds. If he DOESN'T ignore, the car autonomously pulls over, or just stops.

Or make it a wifi or 3G signal that only autonomous vehicles can pick up (all Teslas have a 3G chip, don't they?), and ONLY the police has access and authorization to use it, preferably adding the license plate or VIN to make it an ADDRESSABLE signal. (Tampering with those would be illegal as consequence...)

Still, you can keep the 60 seconds command to IGNORE it, and answer to the POLICE why you would refuse to pull over.

Sorted.

HERE'S YOUR IT ANGLE.

Next!

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Luiz Abdala

Re: The elephant in the back seat

Remember that movie where the kid "learns" to drive, "borrows" his grandad's car, a drunk man steals it... falls asleep with both hands inside the wheel... (so there is body heat and a heartbeat at or near the wheel), but the guy is drunk out cold...

Straight from 1987... (quite obviously named "License to Drive", because he never actually got the license.)

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

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Great Scott! Is nothing sacred? US movie-goers vote Back To The Future as most-wanted reboot

Luiz Abdala

Re: Great Scott!

They hinted left and right she liked girls. They didn't need to do that. Hence, "mangled". The former show worked without it.

If it was her daughter, it would be A-OK, regardless of her sexuality, implied or not. That's what makes reboots so bad, in general: try to do something never mentioned in the original.

Venom and casual unpleasantness, excellent, I liked those. Fit for purpose.

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Luiz Abdala

Great Scott!

This is heavy.

We don't need a reboot or remake.

They mangled She-Ra into a queer... and the villains are not by-the-book evil... just misunderstood girls this time. Hordak is just watching from afar...

Now this.

I'm ok with Avatar 2, because IDGAF.

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Luiz Abdala

Re: I watched Back to the Future 2 last night...

Yes, he did. He played as his own daughter. It took me 10 years to figure it out too.

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Oh, I wish it could be Black Friday every day-aayyy, when the wallets start jingling but it's still a week till we're paiii-iid

Luiz Abdala
Pint

Everything for half of the doubled price...

In Brazil, this event is aptly nicknamed Black Fraud day.

Every item that cost 200.00 the week before now has a sale sign "From 500 to 250".

To top it off it doesn't apply JUST to Electronics. Oh no. Supermarkets. Soft drinks. Beer. In stacks that defy gravity and the safety of customers should they collapse. As if I needed a discount to buy Pilsen, Lager or Coca-Cola in large quantities.

Apparently black ballons were on sale too, because they were used for decoration. It looked like a birthday party for Goth children, with mostly black clothing, black nails to match, and purple hair. A complete mockery of what it should have been.

I was going to buy Heineken regardless, not included in the event ---> icon

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A 5G day may come when the courage of cable and DSL fails ... but it is not this day

Luiz Abdala
Stop

I call bullshit... on the economical level for the end user.

They said all of those wonders of 4G... and nope.

They charge 4G through the nose, for a paltry 5GB per MONTH on my mobile connection. If you burn through it, you're out until next month.

On my cabled DSL I get to watch Netflix, or someone at home does, for several hours on end every day. 8GB is barely a single HD movie, (well maybe two, to be honest). I'm watching in a 1080p TV, so it is bound to use all of the needed bandwidth.

Another concern is lag, because I game. Indeed, my home wifi is not 1ms-stable, but it is in the mid-20s, so are the gaming services I use, WHILE someone is watching Netflix. with a dsl line to the fiber on the street, 40mpbs on speedtest.net being frequent, and 30mbps being the minimum.

I highly doubt they will ever release 5G on unlimited load plans like my cabled connections, but instead use the 4G model.

So, yeah, it may be great, low latency, great bandwidth, but they will charge through the nose anyway to get an antenna somewhere on the top of the building (mine does not allow individual ones) and then again, cable the whole thing through inside the building and then AGAIN using my home 802.11 AC wifi to provide the last mile... not practical.

Either it comes through the wall with great penetration directly to my stuff, or not at all. Even if it does, what about the rest of the stuff? Everything else uses wifi, would they provide 5G adapters to EVERYTHING? Would I have a 5G receiver in the most innard portion of the house to pipe it on my wifi? Nobody thought this through...?

TLDR won't work for me.

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Junior dev decides to clear space for brewing boss, doesn't know what 'LDF' is, sooo...

Luiz Abdala

Beware of abnormally large files on root directory...

...specially if they match the amount of RAM memory.

Classical who me? here...

Things like hiberfil.sys, pagefile.sys on windows... some other OSes store the entire memory load of the OS in a ginormous file on root, that is used when you reboot to commit all the changes... pretty much like Windows, but with much more cryptic names. And no .sys extension to help you.

I heard of such classic instances of someone deleting these key files... and that system refusing to reboot. At all. Or when it did, it looked like something freshly installed, without the millions of patches, updates, and configs tuned to that machine... systems that upon startup are asking for keyboard layout and Time Zones... telltale clues that Very Bad Things Happened™.

I may have done that myself... when Windows was not adamant about keeping those files...

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Premiere Pro bug ate my videos! Bloke sues Adobe after greedy 'clean cache' wipes files

Luiz Abdala
FAIL

EULAs...

...usually have a "get out of jail free" card, exactly for these kind of things:

"this software may not perform its intended function in any way shape or form" etc etc...

Here, from a Samsung EULA on-line site ( https://www.samsung.com/us/common/software_eula.html ):

"THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT IS PROVIDED TO YOU “AS IS“. SAMSUNG DOES NOT WARRANT THAT THE SOFTWARE PRODUCT IS ERROR OR BUG FREE, OR PERFORM OR FUNCTION AS INTENDED"

but this part is the best, and most EULAs have them:

"9. LIMITATION OF LIABILITY

You are solely and entirely liable for the performance or results you may obtain by using the SOFTWARE PRODUCT and SAMSUNG ELECTRONICS shall not be liable for losses arising from your use of the SOFTWARE PRODUCT and for any losses arising from your inability to use the SOFTWARE PRODUCT."

So, this guy is basically HOSED if he had to click through any of these EULAs we all love to ignore.

I highly doubt he can successfully sue Adobe if they have one of THESE in effect.

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Apple's magical quality engineering strikes again: You may want to hold off that macOS High Sierra update...

Luiz Abdala
Coat

Update woes...

Why would they be borked upon update, I wonder?

- Illegal HOME button?

- Chinese knockoff screens detected?

Don't be mad, apple fanboi, Microsoft had their own borkiness going this week too with Pro licenses.

So, let's get out and have a beer.

Mine's the one with an USB bootable drive with Windows 10 setup on the pocket.

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Windows 10 Pro goes Home as Microsoft fires up downgrade server

Luiz Abdala
Pint

Unilaterally turn it into a brick, perhaps?

Oh, they did already, you see...

Oh wait...

Nice one. This one is on me.

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Luiz Abdala
Windows

So, it assumes everybody has Home license if there are NO authentication servers?

I'm confused here.

If I just slap a fresh setup on a PC, no licenses at all... Home it is?

Or, it looks for the Pro auth servers, finds none, and somebody at Microsoft duct-taped the Home servers to "accept" anyone looking for Pro credentials, let them go on a temporary Home activation?

How does that work?

Icon--->

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Solid state of fear: Euro boffins bust open SSD, Bitlocker encryption (it's really, really dumb)

Luiz Abdala

802.11b

Remember the WEP encryption for wifi networks?

I call those "knee-high white-picket-fence strategy".

Yes, you can break/bypass those in less than 30 seconds, but you can prove that the guy had to jump a locked fence, hence he was trespassing.

Yes, you can change the password and decrypt the device, but you leave evidence of doing it. Honey pot strategies... so it's not completely useless, it proves someone tampered with the device.

Or maybe not, what do I know.

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Luiz Abdala
Pirate

I will never forget IBM using ZIP files with passwords on their Aptiva Images.

If you wanted to reinstall just one thing - say, the modem - you had to FORMAT the machine and boot it from the CD with the aforementioned zipped, passworded image. Booting the CD caused the script to simply format the HDD, decompress the files back on it, and reboot. No way to choose which files you wanted.

Or you could brute-force it and extract just the drivers.

The password was 'magic'. No uppercase, no numbers, no extended characters.

Even THAT was more efficient than bitlocker, forcing a brute-force attack, apparently. Even back then, a Pentium 100Mhz was capable of 2 million password attempts per second, but still... brute force.

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Shift-work: Keyboards heaped in a field push North Yorks council's fly-tipping buttons

Luiz Abdala
Joke

Re: Some white ones visible on the pictures

In fact, if a single Model M had been dumped by mistake, it could be used to recycle the Apple ones quite easily. And type the report of the proper recycling afterwards.

Like a hammer among nails.

With a Brazzers logo on the corner.

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Californian chap sets his folks' home on fire by successfully taking out spiders with blowtorch

Luiz Abdala

Re: Kerosene.

Take the pets, mind you.

Animal cruelty is wrong, but only towards your pets.

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Luiz Abdala

Kerosene.

Douse the whole site with kerosene.

But don't light it up, just leave it there.

Cover (tarp?) the place up, and go live somewhere else for a week.

Kerosene fumes will do the trick, not just against spiders, but pretty much anything else that breathes oxygen, including humans and all sorts of pets.

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Silent running: Computer sounds are so '90s

Luiz Abdala

People stopped using ringtones because modern music is a steaming pile of ....

Watch this video...

"Why is music so bad?"

https://youtu.be/oVME_l4IwII

I, personally, use AC/DC "Thunderstruck" as a ringtone.

The whole song.

The opening riff sounds as a ringtone anyway, and if I don't answer, people will be subjected to an appealing cacophony, at least, written in the seventies.

Of course, Mr. Pavlov got me, because now I instinctively reach for my phone whenever I hear that song anywhere else.

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Oracle? On my server? I must have been hacked! *Penny drops* Oh sh-

Luiz Abdala

Re: 1200 baud down, 75 baud up

So are CDs. CDs are also encoded in 2-5 sets of pits and blanks with the last digit to verify IIRC. Small world, huh?

Compact Discs are just a 650MB-wide barcode with redundancy built in.

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Attempt to clean up tech area has shocking effect on kit

Luiz Abdala

Re: Cleaners and lights

...Just like my tale of an University lab where all the sockets changed from 110V to 220V when you turned the lights off...

...Everything that needed a specific voltage on input would release blue smoke or spit its fuses out, every weekend... which happened for 3 weeks in a row until I visited it myself...

...It was my sister's University, so I would usually give her a ride on Saturdays; that day she mentioned her plight with the recent lab expansion, and its fuse-popping, sparkly sockets...

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Luiz Abdala

Re: No clip

In Brazil, we have pure Ethanol cars (would that be E100?) but these never induced static mishaps above their gasoline counterparts... to a significant statistic, that is.

All the employees handling the fuel pumps use 'grease monkey' cotton overalls and rubber sole boots for some obscure reason... and the extra warm and moist weather precludes static buildup anyway.

In fact, the only occasion where such things ever happened were those where that same grease monkey was SMOKING, and shoved his face on top of an open tank of a fuel tanker, cigarette butt still lit on one hand...

I believe the low temperature just precludes MOISTURE in the air, which prevents the dissipation of static charge that would normally occur.

So yes, E85 is easy to ignite at -8 Celsius only because the dry air is, counter-intuitively, non-conductive.

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Luiz Abdala

Grounding the work force... permanently.

A friend of mine told me about his previous job.

They were about to move their business into a new building... that the company would build from the ground up, to better suit their demands upon expansion. But, before moving, they had to install everything in it, including all the electrical bits. He was responsible for the IT part so he lets know of the grounding demands: about 75 wrist straps in an assembly line, and means to ground them, nothing complex. Well, let's just say the Sparky in charge wasn't exactly AWARE of a few demands for it.... or building codes for that matter....

...like not using the same ground for WRIST STRAPS and LIGHTNING RODS. This friend of mine, on the first inspection visit, quickly noticed this weird line across the ground, before the installation of raised floors... hooked up to the rather thick lightning rod lines running outside. About 75 people would've met their demise in the same manner as anecdotal Benjamin Franklin. The first electrical storm on the brand new facility would be the last for the majority of the workforce, no matter how thick those grounding lines could be. Stranger yet, nobody else noticed it.

Would you use a wrist strap hooked to a lightning rod? I guess not.

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Building your own PC for AI is 10x cheaper than renting out GPUs on cloud, apparently

Luiz Abdala
Joke

"How to specify a gaming rig for serious purposes".

Even if the AI doesn't go along well, you still have a gaming machine worthy of the BOFH.

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Flying to Mars will be so rad, dude: Year-long trip may dump 60% lifetime dose of radiation on you

Luiz Abdala

Re: Shields?

If it was easy, NASA would have built it already.

But our spaceship named EARTH works pretty well in that regard. Ozone layer and whatnot...

Lets put that on the "brainstorm" bucket...

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Luiz Abdala
Coat

Shields?

We live in the surface of an iron sphere rotating at 40.000 kilometers per day, which generates a substantial electromagnetic field that filters most radiation...

Perhaps scaling it down to a 4. ton spacecraft to obtain the same field... lined with carefully selected materials...

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Big Cable tells US government: Now's not the time to talk about internet speeds – just give us the money

Luiz Abdala
Pint

Gaming doesn't demand bandwidth, it demands low latency.

"And then of course there is the explosion in online video gaming – yes. Fortnite, but others too. Plus the cloud storage market, video conferencing – FaceTime etc. Smart homes. Internet of things. They all need bandwidth."

STOP. RIGHT. THERE.

Online gaming consumes ridiculously low amounts of bandwidth. Remember dial-up? Yep, you could game - COUNTER STRIKE - with dial-up. I measured my own bandwidth (DU Meter, anyone?) while playing GTA - game sessions with 30 people, vintage 5-year old netcode - and it takes about 10 kbps per user, A FRACTION of dial-up per gamer on your session. And that's being generous. Games are like chess - each PC relays what are they doing to each other, like moving to x y z, and shooting at t, u, v. Every move is relayed in extremely short code. The catch here is LAG. This demands high-quality and low-demanded routers, if you want decent amounts of lag.

Now, the others - video conferencing, facetime, these do demand bandwidth. Not just that, they require QoS and full-duplex connection. Storage needs just raw bandwidth, but it doesn't need the packets to be in order, or low latency, or they must be streamed continuously, they can be sped through in bursts and half-duplex, as long it averages out in a high value.

Netflix is pretty much storage in reverse. Once the receiver can get a large bulk in cache, as long it averages out, the player can't tell the difference, and will play smoothly. So is Youtube.

Beer oclock. End rant.

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Sysadmin misses out on paycheck after student test runs amok

Luiz Abdala
Holmes

Descriptive names for a reason...

You could name it PAYCHEQUE or FINANCIAL or DONTOUCH or anything.

But yeah, blame the guy that tripped the wire, not the guy that laid it there.

Defense in depth, people.

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Redis does a Python, crushes 'offensive' master, slave code terms

This post has been deleted by a moderator

A flash of inspiration sees techie get dirty to fix hospital's woes

Luiz Abdala
Coffee/keyboard

Re: Upsetting non-techies can be hard

"because a random key combination gets knocked and there is no visible way of getting things back to normal."

Oh yesss.... let me get that bit and run with it.

Try hitting Ctrl or Shift 5 times or more (even in Windows 10 perhaps?) and Windows WILL freak out, if you have updated from the previous Winz... enter the accessibility options to disable and all that...

Now mix it with old-school Quake and Doom gameplay, that used to involve several presses of these keys... and disabling it becomes your top priority.

Adding insult to injury, some Intel Graphics also had keyboard shortcuts to rotate the screen, something like ctrl+alt+arrow keys. The single monitor ever that would pivot 90 degrees was a Dell one, one that not many people still have these days...

...and I have seen more than one monitor upside-down, almost making me spill my coffee every time I was called to solve THAT...

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Strewth! Aussie ISP gets eye-watering IPv4 bill, shifts to IPv6 addresses

Luiz Abdala
Pint

BIOS IPv4...

What I think is gonna happen is that IPv4 will become a back-channel of sorts. Only management purposes, while the thick of it goes IPv6.

My android phones don't give a crap when they latch onto my router with an IPv6 number, but oh boy would I get annoyed if I had to type one of those by hand (I never did, to be honest). And the router itself still needs an IPv4 address anyway for my own subnet.

So, it's easy to type 1.1.1.1 for your DNS eh? Who'd known? Who could've guessed?

It's like booting an old PC that relies on BIOS, then it loads higher-level drivers as it goes...

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Trainer regrets giving straight answer to staffer's odd question

Luiz Abdala

A certain movie and an Artillery piece...

I remember a certain movie, where a small village with "simple folk" was caught smack-dab in a strategic defensive position... it was either Italy or somewhere in the Pacific... but it was definitely WWII.

So they parked an Artillery piece there... those truck-towed beauties with 88mm or 105mm or similar cannon size on them.

So, to avoid injury due to improper handling by untrained personnel, the sergeant starts chanting:

-"do not the load the upper feeder with ammo cartridges"

-"do not retreat the (pin) to feed another cartridge"

-"do not close the breech into lock position"

-"do not use the levers to rotate the barrel"...

... you see where this is going. (I don't remember the words, but they were foolproof...)

Eventually, they spot an Axis ship, and no soldiers in sight to operate the Artillery. They recite, word by word, those instructions, and manage to hit the ship... Lovely movie.

Does anybody remember its name, by any chance?

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Fast food, slow user – techie tears hair out over crashed drive-thru till

Luiz Abdala
Windows

Re: Do you want fries with that?

That's bloody genius. With a freaking flying cam, all the clueless plebs will be quickly diagnosed.

If you just managed to get an USB probe linked to the drone that hacks in the machines... or just like BB-8 a prong strong enough to power-cycle a PC switch...

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Windows 95 roars once more in the Microsoft round-up

Luiz Abdala
Go

I remember...

A friend of mine had a game rental store (cartridges for Genesis and SNES back then) running a Windows 3.11 app in a then several-orders-of-magnitude faster Pentium 4 hardware than the 3.11 had ever required.

It ran on bare metal, no emulation or virtual machine here. And it was FAST.

It was so fast, in fact, that it could freeze in your face, and he could hit the reset button and finish your order before you could complain it had frozen.

It was not FAIL-SAFE. It was FAIL-EXPECTED. It WOULD crash, but it could recover in 15 seconds, I kid you not.

Some lesson can be taken from here... it can fail, as long it doesn't take long to recover. Either this, or you design it not to fail for long periods of time...

The guy running a Windows 95 (which we loved) over a MacOS (that is nearly failproof) is a god damn GENIUS.

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London's Gatwick Airport flies back to the future as screens fail

Luiz Abdala
Megaphone

Ouija Boards

Congratulations to the staff that had a whiteboard and marker pens stashed in the back and could still provide information in a nearly fail-safe, albeit EXTREMELY sub-optimal manner.

Just like Ouija boards* aboard Aircraft Carriers relaying the status of every aircraft on the deck, using literally nuts and bolts.

It is better than having NOTHING to show.

*Not literal Ouija boards, just a synoptic representation of the Aircraft Carrier deck drawn over a table.

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Oddly enough, when a Tesla accelerates at a barrier, someone dies: Autopilot report lands

Luiz Abdala

Dead man switch?

Quick reminder: a CFIT can happen with either man or machine, it is not specific. The Tesla crashed just like an airplane, and nobody knows why or how either one that could avoid it, did so.

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Luiz Abdala

Dead man switch?

Trains are able to follow a precise path, yet we still have accidents with them.

In one in particular, the man on the controls could not see the appropriate signaling at that particular time of day, and the investigators verified that fact actually was the causing factor, again, reinforcing, at that particular time of day, the signals could not be seen.

In other occasions, the men behind the controls fell ill, and were unconscious prior to the crash.

How could a sane person ignore the fact that his vehicle was headed toward a concrete barrier at 70mph? Was he awake/sober/ in command? Did the man have a seizure or heart attack or anything that would impair his ability to swerve away or brake? Could he SEE the barrier, did he have sun in his eyes, like James Dean?

If his car crashed on its own due to autopilot going titsup, why where other 3 vehicles involved? Did the other people also fail to notice the erratic behavior on the Tesla? Why didn't it crash SIDEWAYS, because that's what people in control would try to do, wrestle the controls?

Too many questions. Not enough answers. There is even a specific term for when it happens on airplanes, crashing on the ground with a controlled aircraft... Controlled Flight Into Terrain - CFIT.

This is a standard CFIT scenario. He crashed into the barrier without explanation, neither equipment nor crew could detect the disaster until too late. Finding the likely cause would fall back into the other scenarios - equipment failure, pilot error... or into what must be changed for ALL cars that are dealing with automated driving, just like Boeing has been doing since the 70's.

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No, seriously, why are you holding your phone like that?

Luiz Abdala

All generations below mine...

...abhor actual phone calls and send voice messages through Whatsapp instead.

Which kinda makes sense, because actual phone calls are charged by the second, take longer to negotiate and are prone to failure, while compressed audio through whatsapp media is charged by the kilobyte in their data plan, is time-delayed instead of simply failing to transmit, and the net result is actually cheaper. Plus, the interlopers can repeat the messages to their hearts content, and those messages can be checked, before sending, for clarity.

Here is the jump to the topic: the messages are recorded using those 90 degree angles so they can see the screen at the same time they are recording, just in case the other party decides to send an emoji or (gasp!) text at the precise moment they are recording.

And during playback, they turn the volume of the phone down, in order to attain some privacy, and again hold the phone at that odd angle so they can hear the media like it was an actual phone conversation, but not being bothered by actual headphones, bluetooth or otherwise, while keeping the hand position to resume typing, or access once again the record button, at record speeds, no pun intended.

1 hour lost in my commute, observing 5 people doing those actions at the same time, in the metro, allowed this observation.

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'Fibre broadband' should mean glass wires poking into your router, reckons Brit survey

Luiz Abdala
Facepalm

Re: Better in the 3rd World

Perhaps they are referring to 5 GHz wifi 802.11 AC, to add more gasoline to the fire.

I set up a wifi repeater that had to be explicitly stated as 5 GHz, so it took the name [$wifiSSID 5G ext] and it dawned on me how easy it was to misuse it.

From 5 GHz to 5G...

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Luiz Abdala

In Brazil, of all places...

...they don't call it fibre or fiber unless there is a glass-filled thin wire plugged straight into the ISP-leased router on your desk.

They call it just 'cable' or 'Internet cable' at best, due to the commonality and ubiquity of a service provider first using DOCSIS 3.0 (over coaxial cables of course) common to TV's, only having actual fiber on the light pole outside. This service provider took advantage of using TV infrastructure (being a cable TV foremost) to advertise the new method of (broadband) Internet access.

The other service providers use POTS cabling and xDSL, again leaving the actual fiber cables on the poles. Only when you ask for 100+Mbps services, they will go the extra mile, rip everything copper off, and place another section of actual fiber all the way inside.

It turned out so because all ISP's, in one way or another, were behind the evolution curve kept by the clients, that DEMANDED proper installation of newer technologies, after having used dial-up for what seems like millennia and KNOWING that those were COPPER cables, and not fiber, going inside their homes.

The entirety of the Internet service provided in the country trickled down from enthusiasts and first-adopters, into the clients, families, employees, and colleagues of where the first-adopters worked and lived.

Only after the dial-up crowd was appeased and the looming threat of suing for false advertisement ended, actual advertising offering "cable internet" coupled with TV and phone services took place to a broader audience. The generic term was broad enough to ensure marketing couldn't possibly f*** up this time.

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Sysadmin cracked military PC’s security by reading the manual

Luiz Abdala

Re: Microsoft XML crazed fever extend to games.

Well, there's a Computer Repair Shop Simulator on Steam... so... anything goes.

From the cryptic broken english request from users asking to fix or upgrade their PCs, to waiting for delivery of parts, it's pretty broad.

And Solitaire games were developed to get the user familiar with the interface... like a mouse. A VR solitaire should serve the same purpose then, familiarity with the helmet/goggles and handles.

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Luiz Abdala

Microsoft XML crazed fever extend to games.

Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator 3 and Age of Empires 3 had all the game variables in XML files.

Things like "points of contact" of aircraft. 3 points with Z= 0 are the landing gear. Delete all the others and enjoy your nigh-invulnerable plane. Delete these 3 and watch the airplanes cross the airfield floor and explode when they go underground, even before the game begins.

Age of Empires 3 had all the variables spelled out, like TrebuchetAttackForce = 20 or something like that. Replace that 20 with 255 or 65536 and watch all your enemies buildings crumble beneath a single catapult attack. But I think that on AoE 3 only the heroes were identified, so if you changed one of these generic attack units, they would change for BOTH sides, so you could mod your game to your heart's content, knowing that your enemies would get the upgrade too... with hilarious results.

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Atari accuses El Reg of professional trolling and making stuff up. Welp, here's the interview tape for you to decide...

Luiz Abdala

I miss the old days...

...when the hardware said (lets use IBM) "IBM" outside.

You could be sure that every. single. chunk. inside. said IBM, or Made by IBM, or manufactured at [IBM address]. Every single part had the IBM logo, either embossed, or printed, or had at least a sticker. Every manual was carefully constructed, detailed, that even an idiot (hello, myself at age 16) could take it apart with a Phillips screwdriver. And it had pictures! Changing hard drives? Page 18! Adding RAM? Page 12! Your wife dumped you? Annex 12-b! It looked like they gave a fresh box to an intern and told him to put it together, and everything that went wrong on a statistical significance was logged and added to the manual.

Even things like flash a BIOS using a freaking bootable DOS disk were detailed, from which file to download, to "insert disk on drive a:" to how to find the reset button on the carcass of your model. They took you by the hand, and politely opened the limo door for you while holding an umbrella. You felt a VALUED CUSTOMER, you felt CARED.

These days, everything is licensed, it betrays the confidence you placed on this or that company, because almost ANYTHING is done through third-parties, where the Main company does NOT vouch for their warranty, or quality, or whatever.

(Not everybody. Shout out to AMD, that replaced me a Ryzen that never booted with a new one. RMA and a fresh proc across 2 continents in 15 days.)

We lost something valuable here.

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Pwned with '4 lines of code': Researchers warn SCADA systems are still hopelessly insecure

Luiz Abdala
Stop

Do not put these systems online then?

Why would you have any of these systems online? Just don't.

Put them at an USB pendrive of distance of an online PC, but do not hook them to an online machine. Use wi-fi, use ethernet cabling, but don't hook them directly to online machines. Ever.

And only allow system admins near them with said USB storage devices.

Go the BOFH way, and run stuff from a Command Center, not online. It is a hassle, true, but it is safe.

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Microsoft loves Linux so much its R Open install script rm'd /bin/sh

Luiz Abdala
Joke

Re: Remember the rule

But it looks like that in this case, it was running something like

[uninstall routine]

del c:/windows/system32/* /yes /force /fuckyou

4
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Apple MacBook butterfly keyboards 'defective', 'prone to fail' – lawsuit

Luiz Abdala
Trollface

Re: non-moving keys

I am expecting next from Apple that laser projection keyboard that just displays a laser grid on your desk. Instead of non-moving parts, no parts at all.

Ironically, this one in Amazon works for iPad and iPhone...

https://www.amazon.com/Projection-Keyboard-Bluetooth-Wireless-Smartphone/dp/B00X54W9FC

1
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Luiz Abdala

Re: I love my Cherry keyboard!

All those GAMING mechanical keyboards from Razer, etc, use Cherry switches. They even have a color code, Cherry Red, Cherry Blue, Cherry MX... at least the construction method was copyrighted.

Freaking hipsters took over, now they are expensive as hell.

https://lifehacker.com/how-to-choose-the-best-mechanical-keyboard-and-why-you-511140347

https://mechanicalkeyboards.com/shop/index.php?l=product_list&c=10

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Luiz Abdala
Joke

IBM Model M Keyboards...

Laughing all the way to the cupboard to get one of those, and heading to Apple to bash some skulls in... BOFH style...

13
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HP Ink to compensate punters for bricking third-party ink cartridges

Luiz Abdala

Re: USE A DOT MATRIX!

A friend of mine worked in a place where they used dot matrix Epson jobbies because it could run multi-forms.

He had to re-ink them with STAMP INK. BY HAND. They couldn't find replacement ribbons, so he kept doing that alternating 3 sets of ribbons. Then he started mending them with adhesive.

(You still can find LX300 printers, fresh with fancy USB ports. Those were not LX300's.)

Then he left the place.

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