* Posts by M7S

1209 posts • joined 4 Jul 2007


UK.gov plans £2,500 fines for kids flying toy drones within 3 MILES of airports


Is there a list of ATC phone numbers?

and any definition of what constitutes an airport for the purporses of this regulation?

Simply as I live about 7mi from a major airport and about 3 from a small airfield.

It's 2019, the year Blade Runner takes place: I can has flying cars?


There's a danger in this, some years I went to Tokyo for a couple of days. The drivers there were so polite that if I so much as stood near the kerb well away from a crossing, they still stopped and encouraged me to cross in safety. After a couple of days I was quite used to this so landing after that in Australia and blithley assuming this might be similar (as, sensibly, they also drive on the correct side of the road) turned into an almost lethal experience.

German cybersecurity chief: Anyone have any evidence of Huawei naughtiness?


Re: Sicherheit macht frei

Hackers = Intelligence not sanctioned by YOUR state'S administration


Dixons Carphone smarting from £440m loss as it writes down goodwill on mobile biz


"Includes handing the 30,000-strong workforce £1,000 worth of shares"

Is that each, or just an insultingly small incentive per person?

Which scientist should be on the new £50 note? El Reg weighs in – and you should vote, too


Could TPTB be persuaded to consider a partnership?

Lovelace and Babbage?

Swedes grumbling about Apple Store in their park are lucky – in Toronto, Google eats all your data


"where everyone is welcome in a space where the best of Apple comes together"

Will this apply to any person wearing an El Reg T-shirt and perhaps asking for a few words with a press officer?

Alexa heard what you did last summer – and she knows what that was, too: AI recognizes activities from sound


It sounds like you're having a heart attack

Would you like me to call you an ambulance?

London tipped to lead European data market. Yes, despite Brexit!


London top for data

is that because of the amount that HMG supposedly is collecting on us all?

EU wants one phone plug to rule them all. But we've got a better idea.


Not just phones

I've a Garmin Satnav (Zumo 660) that will charge from USB using an internal port under the battery cover but won't power from USB on the back of the car mount so cannot be easily used in a car unless of course I purchase the proprietary Garmin car cable that has a different connector.

Seems odd as my other Garmin (an ancient i3) will run off the USB as will the various Tomtoms etc

Drama as boffins claim to reach the Holy Grail of superconductivity


Re: "quantum computing will never work because..."


Mine usually does after he's had a rather rank mouse.

You won't believe this but... everyone hates their cable company: Bombshell study lands


If Google are 2nd best at things including customer service

then things must really be bad

'Can you just pop in to the office and hit the power button?' 'Not really... the G8 is on'


Just a beer?

Or were cocktails suddenly out of fashion?

(As it's a Monday morning, there's a clue in the icon)

Basic bigot bait: Build big black broad bots – non-white, female 'droids get all the abuse


Grace Jones

came to mine when I saw the photo on the story. Give your black female robot her personaility as well and its almost guaranteed not to get any abuse, except by something with a range over 500 metres that can be discarded as you run away after launching your missile.

Bear in mind, however, that if it is too good a copy criticism of its articstic capabilities may be justified.

Prof claims Lyft did a hit-and-run on his ride-sharing tech patent


I dont know about Lyft, but I can see why he's not suing Uber

"minimizing the social costs of urban transportation"

From what I have read in these august pages, the social cost of Uber has been pretty high. Conventional cabs forced out of work (that might be seen as fair competition), allegations of extensive mysoginy at their head office, allegations that their drivers are not properly vetted, allegations regarding the "greyball" scheme to actively avoid regulators etc etc

Clearly they're not copying his blueprint to bring nirvana to the travelling masses.

I'd use the Joke icon, but I'm not entirely sure that it fits in this instance....

ZX Spectrum reboot firm boss delays director vote date again


Deferring decisions for another month

Being admittedly ignorant of the structure of this company and the remuneration packages of directors, managers and staff, would it be too cynical of me to think that this could mean that what this really means is that there is another monthly payment of salaries to "shortly to be removed" directors, possibly along wit pension contributions, healthcare insurance, lease payments on company cars etc etc (exact circumstances may vary by individual) before new management is finally appointed, stops some of this and tries to return whatever might be left from the kitty to shareholders, dismissed employees etc

Just wondering....

Britain mulls 'complete shutdown' of 4G net for emergency services


Re: Single points of failure?

Well, that depends on whose ambulance turns up.

Like it or not, in some areas one third of the ambulances responding to front line calls are private contractors, Due to the way the NHS structures some of the contracts ("we'll only give up to [yes, that's "up to" in the same sense as your broadband supplier] ten days notice of the shifts we want crew and vehicles for") in order to obtain "best value" and keep suppliers on their toes (good for staff morale, forward logistical and financial planning etc in the best traditions of the NHS) not everyone is prepared to invest in the required mobile data terminals, airwave sets etc. Hand portables need to be keep in a secure central location at the discretion of the trust which in some instances means a 90 minute drive at the start and end of each shift (unpaid to both the contractor and their staff) to collect so in some places the crews are operating on mobile telephones (no ACCOLC or whatever the current acronym is) and TomTom.

Where the services is prepared to guarantee a "core requirement" that a certain number of vehicles will be required for say a year, then operators are installing the MDTs, but handsets remain elusive. The fact that providers and their vehicles can be deployed from one trust to another from day to day does not help.

Whilst I remain concerned about the technical issues for the new network, there is the chance that it may be possible to develop approved apps (with information sharing, mapping/tracking, status updates, priority calls, priority access etc) that will allow a listed mobile phone belonging to a provider to be integrated more easily and with the capability of running in different trust areas as required, which could be useful for volunteer organisations and the like as well.

Toaster oven-sized boffin box bound for Mars to search for life


Howdy doodly doo

Mars? I think AI toaster sized devices were deployed by the Jupiter Mining Corporation first....


RAF Air Command to take on UK military space ops


If, as the title says, the RAF are to take on UK Military Space Ops...

...who was running it up until now?


Fixing a printer ended with a dozen fire engines in the car park


Twenty thousand lines a minute? Really?

I'm in awe if it is as that's over three lines hundred a second which (if on A4, and I appreciate it is not) is nearly ten sheets at any reasonable font.

Per second.

I'd be considering this as defensive weaponry for the BOFH and PFY to install facing the door to accounts, as at the speed the little rollers would be required to spin, you could probably get thicker, non continuous paper to go some distance, inflicting some very nasty paper cuts.....

Autonomy pulled wool over Brit finance panel's eyes, US court told


If they go after anyone else in Autonomy's former management, would anyone be....


Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it's a terrible leak of drone buyers' data


Re: Govt Procurement Rules @ Frenchie lad

So, are you saying that there should be some kind of marker on cop/spy emails/orders along the lines of "I am a spy, I do not exist. I was never here." so that any webstore knows to treat this data in some special way or voluntarily reject the transaction if the store is not fully vetted (and which no unfriendly country would in any way think useful when setting up a false honeypot/website, Oh no) or just that the rest of us peons don't deserve protection of our information?

iOS 11.3 update throws Jamf-managed iStuffs into a loop.. into a loop.. into a loop... into a...


Didn't Apple use to have its own MDM?

I seem to recall that it was part of the Server OS "App", at least it was before they decided to denigrate that particular product. Certainly we were starting to look at its functions before they pulled the plug. It seems strange that they didn't promote this to businesses as I'd have thought it an ideal fit for them, and a way of promoting hardware sales, but then they threw small busniesses under the bus alongside that package so maybe we're not hip enough for them.

A shame as it was a potential alternative to MS for those of us not skilled enough to deploy Linux type stuff.

UK regulator bans slasher-flick parody ad for OnePlus 5 mobe


The argument from the advertisers will be.....

clearly the targetting didn't work in this case, so we need to be required by law to provide them with more personal information on age, gender, income, relatives, likes, dislikes. browsing history, contacts, etc.

Purely so that mistakes cannot happen in the future. Until next time.

Go park yourself: Brit firm flashes self-parking car tech


"which puts it head-to-head with German car tech rivals"

a problem mainly caused by the Germans (and most other countries) driving on the incorrect side of the road.

The dayglo yellow one with the reflective chequered bands around the sleeves, thank you

F-35B Block 4 software upgrades will cost Britain £345m


North of five billion bucks for a box of encrypted USB sticks and a secure courier!

I'm astonished, I've seen more realistic and reasonable prices being quoted on the stands at Infosec, which is saying something.

Clearly Maplins had the right pricing but was in the wrong market sector.

Uber breaks self-driving car record: First robo-ride to kill a pedestrian


Whilst autonomous, at least it wasn't an electric vehicle,

or else there'd be a problem deciding who/what would be


Europe is living in the past (by nearly six minutes) thanks to Serbia and Kosovo


This situation with the clocks being wrong just winds me up and

...I get really ticked off about it

UK's Dyson to vacuum up 300 staffers for its electric car division


I'm all for the idea of electric vehicles but

many drivers of ICE powered vehicles are currently stranded in places like the M80 and according to the news, have been there in excess of eighteen hours (at the time of typing) running engines periodically to keep warm.

Given that batteries don't really like the cold anyway, how would electric vehicles fare in such climes? This may be of particular interest/relevance to Scandinavian or North American readers where such conditions are regular and prolonged and replies from any with experience of electric vehicle in their rural areas would be especially welcome. Such a winter might not happen here more than a couple of times a decade but it would be unwelcome to see our future transport infrastructure deal very badly with it when it does come about if we've not considered such points. Not that we're doing particularly well at the moment....


Noting that Dyson also briefly did washing machines

and also referencing the tech used in their main product lines, I'd trial the DysonMobile by taking it for a spin.

Yorkshire cops have begun using on-the-spot fingerprint scanners


Re: "App on their smartphones"

Police dog handlers certainly take their dogs home

You dopes! US state's pot dealer database pwned after security goes up in smoke


Evidence of how the breach occurred

would that be a....

...smoking gun?

No sh*t, Sherlock! Bloke suspected of swallowing drug stash keeps colon schtum for 22 DAYS


It's simple enough to get away with this sort of thing, just sit still

One might almost say...


I thank you.

Bluetooth 'Panty Buster' 'smart' sex toy fails penetration test


Re: Maybe the wearers WANT someone to hack in and control it

Yes, IIRC Stuxnet was supposed to induce excessive vibration.

The sort of Subtly Transmitted Infection you might not object to

Bring the people 'beautiful' electric car charging points, calls former transport minister


Recent media stuff on electric car charging

BBC Radiio 4, "In Business" http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b09l21z2 which should be available for a few days after this post goes up and I'm looking forward to the video of this week's El Reg talk on the subject when this goes live, hopefully any day now

Forget cyber crims, it's time to start worrying about GPS jammers – UK.gov report


UK Priority on emergency networks

No. I work for three major contractors providing frontline 999 to the public on behalf of more than one significant service. The sort of people you want turning up in a hurry when you need us.

In one service area we have MDTs fitted to our trucks, but these fault at least once every few shifts, and whilst there is a "company phone" in the vehicle as backup this does not have any ACCOLC or other special simcards (whatever the new equivalent is) as we are "only a private company". Usually when we book on with control we are asked for a backup number as well which will be the crew's own mobile. Again there's no way for us to get any priority simcards that we are aware of.

In the second services area we only get issued one airwave handset with all instructions coming by text, everything else is done on crew's own mobiles and crew's own GPS units suckered onto the windscreen, so the comms is even less resilient, and the third service is a major voluntary provider so with less budget there are not enough airwaves if quite a few of use are working (and these all have to be booked in and out of a central depot over an hour away, for "security reasons" before and after each shift) and we rely on point to point VHF (probably more resilient) and again crew's own mobiles.

Whilst there would undoubtedly be some abuse of allowing all front line contractors to get priority simcards, the current view from HMG services is that such things are for senior managers only and we peons should just learn to use the equipment properly as it was very expensive and cannot possibly go wrong.

As the services move towards 5G, then someone needs to sort out a system whereby those of us doing this kind of work can get access to the infrastructure we need to provide that service, currently it is simply not there.

Apple whispers farewell to macOS Server



I'd done some work on OS Serrver, in fact we purchased a Mac Mini Server, only to find during testing that with the next OS update this installed feature was wiped by Apple and needed to be re-purchased (there was a means to get this re-instated for free but that only applied in the US, so we did have concerns even then about whether or not we could rely on this, at least from a customer relations point of view.....)

For a small business, wanting to host mail on premises (1) and perhaps manage a couple of iThings, have a little intranet and not have lots of boxes heating up a cupboard (IIRC power consumption is about 11 watts when not doing terribly much) these were ideal and whilst I know there is an Apple Tax and also that their attitude to customers is not great, it was at least something where you had "one stop shopping" if something went wrong rather than vendors of different software and hardware all blaming each other.

I think it was a greatly missed opportunity for all those little shops, businesses and the self employed not really in need of any "heavy" IT and lament the passing of the last (AFIAK) of this type of product. If there is something along the lines of some integrated free- or cheap-ware that would do the job on an old computer and is reliable and easy for non techies to set up (so I can also recommend it to friends), I'd be grateful for details. I'd have paid more than the £20 or so for OS server so there's a market, but whether or not it is viable for a developer is another matter.....

(1) On the basis that you can at least pretend to have a bit more control of data you are responsble for and also as one day a major cloud service might fail, taking tens or hundreds of thousands of small business' IT systems down with it. 2E2 was a warning....

*Other expletives may be applied after the watershed.

Make Apple, er, America Great Again: iGiant to bring home profits, pay $38bn in repatriation tax


I wonder how the fanboys of Islington will react

Now that their overpriced purchases are finally funding Trump's policies.

Should be good for a wind-up in the craft beer bar on a Friday night

Elon Musk lowers his mighty erection for test firing: Falcon Heavy preps for maiden voyage


Re: I don't care!

@ Flocke, are you sure you didn't mean this one http://robotech.wikia.com/wiki/Tesla, who also fits the "slightly insane genius scientist" requirement.

Anyway, I though SHIELD had already done the "launch a red roadster into the sky" thing, or is that not "Cannon" (sorry)

Whizzes' lithium-iron-oxide battery 'octuples' capacity on the cheap


Maybe "ten years away"

so this will make electric vehicles truly practical at about the same time we'll all be using Nuclear Fusion for free clean unlimited energy.

I like predictions. They're even better than election manifestos

If you won't use your brain our machine will use it for you, Nissan tells drivers


And what do men apparently think about every seven seconds or so....

That will be all, thank you

Military alliance NATO adopts official hymn


Given the new emphasis on "space" warfare

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KIsv1YOFNys, although that might not strike the right polical tone

or for something with a very different sense of irony (and a very different kind of starship trooper...)




Anyone remember El Reg's very own moderatrix?

ODFO was one of her more frequent responses.

What will drive our cars when the combustion engine dies?


Given how long it took to agree new nuclear power plants in the UK

Is all this talk of electric vehicles just horsing around?

Mind you, that could probably be very necessary in a couple of decades......

Iran the numbers – and Persian internet is the cheapest in the world


and in North Korea the cost is?

Enquiring minds want to know, although this might be officially discouraged, possibly even bad for one's health.

Teensy weensy space shuttle flies and lands


Space fighter, or at least a toy for the very rich

There is a rather "windscreen looking" black strip in the pictures, so there's hope of something you can take a partner and a small weekend bag in....

Los Alamos National Lab fires up 750-node RPi cluster


Re: Not enough buzzwords

Ok then




Testing on


Research &


The NAKED truth: Why flashing us your nude pics is a good idea – by Facebook's safety boss


Worrying about people seeing pictures of me naked in the wild rather than just one FB staffer

Just before you read any further, "in the wild" in the title above alludes to "beyond my control" rather than images of my muffin top cavorting about the local, um, beauty spot.

If there are any images of various bits of me that people enjoy, they're either medical professionals or going to need some form of help rather more than I will. In a few cases, possibly both.

Ah yes, the coat, I should have kept that on, but better late than never. Thank you.

How we fooled Google's AI into thinking a 3D-printed turtle was a gun: MIT bods talk to El Reg


I've occasionally wondered how much fun could be had

if I had a template of something like a handgun or grenade and through it could spray something that was invisible to the naked eye but opaque to x-ray onto suitcases of those travelling via air. The boss' carry-on case comes to mind if he's come into the office before heading to the airport, or just wandering around the lobby of an hotel randomly picking on luggage waiting to be moved somewhere.

Now if just changing a few pixels will fool the AI, is there a possibility that some very small stickers would in effect do the same sort of thing? At times of major holidays this could be as effective a way of bringing an airport to a standstill as any more violent act.

Frowns all round as Smile and Co-op online banking goes down


Now if if it just took out the ATMs as well

then customers could enjoy the cashless society nirvana alluded to here https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/11/06/link_atm_shakeup_analysis/

Donald, YOU'RE FIRED: Rogue Twitter worker quits, deletes President Trump's account


Just to be clear on the sequence of events

Whilst it might seem to most readers to have been a prank by someone leaving anyway, from the information given there is the slim possibility that this became the employee's last day once this action (deliberate or otherwise) was discovered, said last day not necessarily being his initial choice.

In which case any subsequent unfair dismissal claim could be interesting....


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