* Posts by DropBear

3640 posts • joined 4 Mar 2013

Batteries are so heavy, said user. If I take it out, will this thing work?

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Bullshit.

I have to admit utterly made-up "anecdotes" have a certain set of common elements of content and styling - hard to describe but easy to spot after reading too many of the known-myth ones. And this story positively reeks of them.

2
0

The Gemini pocket PC is shipping and we've got one. This is what it's like

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Nokia

Nokia just expressed their joy at getting rid of consumers altogether heading into exclusive-business-to-business territory. So they could hardly care less. HMD might, but at current rates of overwhelming industry-wide apathy regarding qwerty handsets I'll need some serious evidence before I believe that.

2
0

Boffins: If AI eggheads could go ahead and try to stop their code being evil, that'd be great

DropBear
Silver badge

"This is the beginning of a dialogue on this topic, not the end," Brundage added.

Is that a... threat, mr. Brundage, or "just" a promise...?

4
0

Reinforcement learning woes, robot doggos, Amazon's homegrown AI chips, and more

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: I've seen that Black Mirror documentary

Boston Dynamics "Big Dog" (robot) : 2005

Black Mirror (TV series) : 2011

...sorry, you were saying...?

1
0
DropBear
Silver badge

"What's the reward for a robot?"

Continuing to exist, or rather getting to spawn variations rather than just being discarded. For the neural net, at least. The hardware doesn't give a ####.

0
0

Teensy plastic shields are the big new thing in 2018's laptop crop

DropBear
Silver badge
WTF?

Re: A small mischievous bet

Have I just stumbled on my latest Patent?

Try holding a piece of photo paper in front of your face and developing it - let me know when you succeed taking a picture, so I can start looking for airborne whales and petunias. I'm not saying there's no way to combine a screen with a camera, but just making the pixels photo-sensitive is not going to get you there. Lenses aren't quite redundant yet...

8
0
DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

I do have a webcam permanently plugged into my home desktop, but it's a model with prominently lit LED trims whenever it's actually on. Now, if you insist, I'm perfectly willing to believe that some combination of vulnerabilities does exist that would allow someone to re-engineer and/or switch its firmware (or driver) to snoop with no LEDs lit but I believe it would take some serious doing - with that kind of attention that webcam would be the least of my problems. Hooking into some IP-cam's open ports with default credentials is one thing - this would be quite another.

Then again, if there's money in this, maybe I should start selling in-line USB dongles that do nothing but monitor current to a webcam and beep whenever it suddenly goes up. ...Naaah, I'm too lazy. Shenzen, are you listening? Free product idea...!

10
0

Facebook told to stop stalking Belgians or face fines of €250k – a day

DropBear
Silver badge

Facebook is not the problem

Commendable sentiment, but if I may ask - in a world where Facebook is only able to exist because countless people see no major problem with what it does, what exactly do you think its eventual demise will accomplish...? It's like saying "and then good will finally defeat evil once and for all". Come now, as long as people willingly flock to this kind of thing there will be a reason to take advantage of them, there will be something else coming along and we all know it...

0
0

Helicopter crashes after manoeuvres to 'avoid... DJI Phantom drone'

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

The sailboat was clearly reaching for a gun. There was no other way.

0
0

Magic Leap's staggering VR goggle technology just got even better!

DropBear
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: Silicon Valley is getting too crowded anyways

...just watch them double their valuation when they announce later in "the spring" that the product is expected to slip to Q4 due to unforeseen delays in integrating blockchain technology...

2
0
DropBear
Silver badge

You're in luck then - SC is selling some brand new pixels next week...

2
0

HomePod, you say? Sex sex sex, that's all you think about

DropBear
Silver badge
Joke

Wonderful! It's really about time microwave ovens start coming with off-putting lists of possible side-effects as well considering how wildly dangerous they truly are - such as: "...including severe adverse financial effects*, concussion-like swelling**, extensive third degree burns***, loss of your home****, cardiac arrest*****, asphyxiation******, irreversible loss of cerebral activity*******, violent seizures******** and general cessation of existence by spontaneous summoning of a quantum singularity from a parallel dimension*********". Scary stuff, I tell you!

* by electricity bill, if you keep melting the cheese on your sammiches with the grill heater for every single meal

** by contact with your neighbour's baseball bat when he finally realizes why his WiFi keeps dropping the connection on the other side of the wall

*** go ahead, look up that Youtube clip about microwaves and superheated water, then ever again dare to re-heat a cup of tea, I dare you...

**** by the fire caused by a shitty extension cord that starts arcing at the plug

***** by leaking enough EM radiation to reset your pacemaker into "firmware update" mode

****** assuming you fail to remove it quickly enough after you cement your head into it just for teh lulz

******* assuming your door interlock is faulty and you decide it's easier to see up-close when the food is done with the door open

******** by electrocution via the high-powered high-voltage transformer when you go "hold my beer, I can fix this even plugged in..."

********* impossible to conclusively prove it cannot happen so if it does guess who you won't be suing? Not us!

9
1

Stephen Elop and the fall of Nokia revisited

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: " current crap mobile OS (Symbian)"

Seconded. My previous phone (that is, the one I've been using before the current one!) was a Series 60 3rd edition, and it was an absolutely marvellous device. Certain things it did better than even the latest Androids today. It's no longer a practical option obviously, but "crap"? Fuck no!

3
0
DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: See also in El Reg today

"Trust no one"

Ooooh, I see what you did there. Don't tell me what to do...!

1
0

Ubuntu wants to slurp PCs' vital statistics – even location – with new desktop installs

DropBear
Silver badge
Stop

Re: And?

What you can use data about me for is not my concern. You asking me questions IS.

Frankly I don't care if you can both cure cancer and bring about world peace with it: the answer is NO. I might even have considered it if you asked nicely but as long as it's "I know you wouldn't like this so I'll just go ahead and do it anyway unless you stop me" the only appropriate reply is middle-finger-shaped.

2
2

Astro-boffinry world rocked to its very core: Shock as Andromeda found to be not much bigger than Milky Way

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: 4 billion years...

I'm sure we'll be screwing in some sort of eco-saver replacement in its stead long before that...

7
0

If this laptop is so portable, where's the keyboard, huh? HUH?

DropBear
Silver badge

"Do we really have to deride others..."

YES. Oh yes, we absolutely do. Not knowing how the Carnot cycle applies to your car's engine is a non-issue unless you're the one designing the damned thing. But if your work involves driving yet you can't tell me how many pedals are in your car so you need a chauffeur to get around, I'll laugh you out of existence without the slightest bit of remorse.

129
4

Apple to devs: Code for the iPhone X or nothing from April onwards

DropBear
Silver badge

So they're going the Unity route? Whatever, same final result, it will just take longer if they decide to insist at all costs...

2
0

We already give up our privacy to use phones, why not with cars too?

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: So drive a..

"I am no longer able to drive my 80s car into the city"

Time to do a full 180 and push back HARD. See what you can register as a "classic car" and if it would get around "normal" regulations, get one of those.

1
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: 'Lisa Joy Rosner - *** Chief marketing officer ***'

(S)he's not completely wrong, unfortunately - it seems to me that newer generations seem to have less and less of a problem with pervasive surveillance, having experienced it more and more as the natural state of things. Some sort a STASI-2 will need to happen with all the assorted atrocities before resistance to this sort of thing will ever be mainstream again...

2
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Software solves anything!

"And before you say that carburetors are good enough for everyone"

Oh, not just good enough - BETTER! A carb-equipped car would have kept going (and if not, I guarantee I COULD HAVE MADE IT TO on the spot) when my smartly injection-controlled (but otherwise ancient) car left me able to crank but otherwise fully inert and thus stranded due to a mundane relay failure (that just happened to power... the ECU; as it turns out, it's a failure waiting to happen on every single car of that model: the entire production run of those relays tuned out to be faulty with a botched cold solder joint; naturally, they were never recalled).

3
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Another solution for a new car:

My countless years of watching anything remotely car related, form the poshest "I know someone we can pass it off to, with profit, regardless of budget overruns" shows to the crummiest "a coat of spray can paint over the rims and we're good to flip it mate" ones left me firmly convinced that restoring any car with any level of properness costs several times the price of a brand new one, easily, no exceptions (and would probably suffice for an entire lifetime's worth of second hand car purchases). Unless of course your definition of "new car" targets a price bracket above what some supercars cost.

4
1
DropBear
Silver badge
Devil

Re: Finance figures are a bit scary

"I'm not sure for which kind of women"

The existence of specimens being attracted to males who aren't either rich / beautiful / rich / charming / rich / alpha-dominant / rich (or at least a credible alimony scam target) has long been theorised but frankly I expect to see supersymmetry confirmed long before that one.

2
2

Roses are red, are you single, we wonder? 'Cos this moth-brain AI can read your phone number

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: It will have practical applications...

Only goes to show that moths are born scholars. "First, let us assume the source of light is at infinity..."

5
0
DropBear
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Roses are red, Violets are blue...

Roses are red, but if that is true

you only exist in my dream about you...

5
0

Mars is red, Earth is blue. Here's a space laser story for you

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: "SHERLOC will be calibrated, tested, then re-tested and re-calibrated "

"And hopefully decontaminated."

Elementary, dear Watson...

0
0
DropBear
Silver badge
Joke

Re: How they could spot a Mars rock in Oman?

Maybe the crater gave it away...

0
0

Who wants dynamic dancing animations and code in their emails? Everyone! says Google

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: some people may find this appealing

To be fair, even traditional mail included occasionally things that weren't strictly letters - postcards, illustrated catalogues etc. Much of that may have always been spam to many, but not to all - believe it or not, I often find occasional full-graphic "now on sale" ad-mails from some of the specialized sites I actually shop at actually rather useful (ie. random stuff from Amazon: not useful - shop selling only books and DVDs or RC hobby parts: potentially useful). Of course, this is NOT to endorse AMP in any sense, just to be clear, and I fully support anyone's choice who wants nothing but text - I'd just like to counterbalance it by pointing out that for at least some of us "text only (not even HTML)" is not one but several bridges too far.

1
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Ends-Means

"BEFORE any proper patches for Meltdown and Spectre"

That's weird. I was under the distinct impression that the timer resolution making those exploits possible has been not so much reduced but rather obliterated in Palemoon specifically, and that the other browsers also did more or less the same thing already. What exactly are you on about...?

0
0

Are you an open-sorcerer or free software warrior? Let us do battle

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: blacklash against GPL viral clause

Stallman "lost the argument"? Really? I find it thoroughly amusing to read this on a site where so many people apparently understand (and often fierily advocate) the need for privacy in spite of there not being much in the way of horror stories to illustrate their point. GPL is rather like that - it is very much needed in spite of remaining unnecessary most of the time; it protects against things that lie in wait on roads the proprietary software world simply ended up choosing not to walk down most of the time.

That is not to say I believe any piece of software, no matter how modest, absolutely needs to be GPL. If all you care about is having your code used as widely as possible - by all means, go Apache / MIT / BSD / public domain / whatever. More power to you. Then again, when you go to all the trouble to freely donate a collectively ginormous amount of man-hours to build an operating system only to see a hardware manufacturer tack its proprietary stuff to it and sell it back to you as a black box you are not supposed to be able to mess with as you please, you might understandably get a bit miffed.

Also, you may choose not to care what others might build and hoard from code they were given freely, but you only have that choice as long as you truly need nothing from the world outside. Out here in the real world that essentially never happens for any collectively developed project of any significant size; who else might try competing for whatever you need (whether it's visibility, donations, contributor support or something else) using your own work against you can easily become an issue you cannot afford to not deal with.

GPL is that basic lock on your door - it might not keep someone with a bump key out of your home if they're devious and determined enough, but it does at least spell out where you stand, and should at least keep honest people honest...

2
0

Cryakl ransomware antidote released after servers seized

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

"You must pay me now... in Bitcoin!" evokes some seriously trippy imagery...

0
0

Apple tells GitHub to fork off: iGiant steps outside DMCA law in quest to halt iBoot leaks

DropBear
Silver badge
Devil

Re: Barbra Streisand

Barbara Joan Streisand, born April 24, 1942 (age 75). Either that is a coat with a time machine, or you're incredibly, uh... brave.

10
1

NASA budget shock: Climate studies? GTFO. We're making the Moon great again, says Trump

DropBear
Silver badge
Joke

Re: Valuable minerals?

Pure Cavorite.

5
0
DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: Predicting the past

Put a rail-gun on Mars, shoot the sample into orbit. If we can't use balloons we might as well make the best of it...

2
0

Samsung needs to eat itself, not copy Apple's X-rated margins

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Apples and Pears?

Yup. Unless you really must have the cutting edge tech most lower-cost Androids are more than adequate - but for the same low price, the no-name ones give you more tech than the entry level brand-name ones...

0
0

Boffins upload worm's brain into a computer, teach it tricks

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: the concept of 'work'

It's exceedingly simple though - "as long as you agree to spend most of your life doing something you have zero desire to do, I agree to sponsor it".

3
0

Home taping revisited: A mic in each hand, pointing at speakers

DropBear
Silver badge
Facepalm

Re: spectrum games tapes

Vertical tape deck. Front window glass slid off its mounting rails. Tiny screwdriver wedged precariously under the transport roller's carrier bridge, resting on the lip of the window opening, lifting the bridge ever-so-slightly by its sheer counterbalanced weight alone. I swear it was the only way to get that particular tape to load...

2
0

It's been 50 years since those damn dirty apes took the planet by storm

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Franchise size

I first encountered it as a comic strip. Didn't much like any of the other versions of it either. Sorry.

0
0

Secret weekend office bonk came within inch of killing sysadmin

DropBear
Silver badge

And how does that help when everyone involved knows exactly who the person telling the story is...?

2
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: It's actually not _that_ dangerous

Hey - we clearly all still remember it: that means it's undeniably an efficient "safety rules" vehicle...

7
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Near death experience ?

I was always curious how exactly those can possibly happen; our elevator definitely isn't any sort of fancy, but the doors are literally, physically interlocked to the cabin with a small latch you can see turn and unlock the door each time the cabin arrives. So okay, these are "open by hand" doors not the modern self-opening kind, but still... (why) aren't all doors unable to open without a cabin present?

6
0

No yolking matter: Google Translate cock-up gives Norwegians more than un œuf eggs

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: Can't say I noticed anything out of the ordinary for a Reg article

Oh great. So basically we'll never know whether the real story was about 15000 eggs being delivered instead of 1500 or 1500 instead of 15000 - there's no telling when any of the numbers involved were borked again...

1
0

Winter is coming for AI. Fortunately, non-sci-fi definitions are actually doing worthwhile stuff

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: "We have only just seen the beginning of what AI can achieve"

I reckon the translation thing is approximately going from "finding translations for each word in the original and returning them roughly in the order they were in the original text" (equal to Classic Chinglish) to "returning the most common phrase the resulting words tend to be found in, possibly also preferring the phrases typically found closest to the rest of the phrases in the text" (Modern Chinglish a.k.a. "just run it through Google"). True context awareness is nowhere in sight of course, seeing as how that would require actual proper Turing-resistant AI.

6
0

Boffins crack smartphone location tracking – even if you've turned off the GPS

DropBear
Silver badge

Re: @Francis Great!

Was your WiFi also turned off...? Because those other folks with turned-on GPS already informed Google what access points they can see at what signal strength whenever they are where you are now...

8
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Joke's on them!

You've got nothing on me! I keep even my tin foil tightly wrapped in tin foil, only taking it out right before use, so it's fresh and not already soaked full of those evil mind control rays!

10
0

NASA's zombie IMAGE satellite is powered up and working quite nicely

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Re: Ahh...the old 'drain the power...

"The suspense was overwhelming!"

Didn't you see "Ghost"...? He might still be able to type either way, so it's good to clear up any confusion!

0
0

MY GOD, IT'S FULL OF CARS: SpaceX parks a Tesla in orbit (just don't mention the barge)

DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

Kudos for inventing the easiest, simplest and shortest way to explain relativity and time dilation to millennials...

3
1
DropBear
Silver badge
Trollface

I find it thoroughly amusing that in the case any aliens ever actually find and retrieve the puzzling object they found in orbit around the Sun (assuming no other knowledge of us down here), the real explanation of what it is and how and why it got up there will eternally stay relegated to "crackpot conspiracy theory" territory - no sane alien archaeologist will ever subscribe to "purely because we can and because it's cool, no practical purpose whatsoever"...

13
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Julian Assange

"The exact point of gravitational balance between the Earth and the Moon" is not very useful actually, depending on how you define "gravitational balance". The spot where the Earth and the Moon pull on you equally in opposite directions is nowhere near stable actually - the spot where the difference between those two exactly balances out the effects of your orbital speed around Earth is the one you're looking for (and known as "L1", with others all the way to "L5" )

3
0
DropBear
Silver badge

Re: Not the first electric car in space...

It kinda depends on your specific definition of what qualifies as a car though, anywhere between "a thing with wheels transporting people" and "a road-legal car as we know it". But yeah, sure, we did have buggies in space...

3
0

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018