* Posts by SolidSquid

676 posts • joined 13 May 2013


Germany says no steamy ebooks until die Kinder have gone to bed


It could well be this is just a judge wanting to highlight a really badly written law by sticking to exactly what is written when this came to him. Generally judges don't get to determine what the law actually is, just whether a case is in breach of the law, so this is one of the few ways they can create pressure to fix things which are broken

This time we really are all doomed, famous doomsayer prof says


Re: Oh for god's sake...

His previous two claims had time frames which have come and gone, and all three claims have differing causes. So while he's been saying the world was going to end for 40 years he keeps changing his mind on the *why*, which is the scientific bit

Microsoft U-turns on 'free' Windows 10 upgrade promise for ALL previewers


Well that's annoying, I apparently missed that button during installation on my tablet. Would have preferred a local account over a cloud sync'd one

FBI says in secret that secret spy Cessnas aren't secret


"the FBI told Senate staffers it was working with the FAA to restore some cover to preserve operational security"

So they're hiding/modifying/forging documents to cover up an operation which, by their own admission, is not classified or secret?

AssangeTM says Sweden squibbed on promised interview


"Assanage argues that he's spent 1,650 days without being formally charged"

Well yes. They can't actually charge him until he's in custody, so by hiding in the Ecuadorian embassy he's prevented that happening. How is this the fault of the prosecutors?

Unlucky, Palmer: Facebook's going to BAN Oculus pr0n apps


So that's them going in the opposite direction of the one they said they would with the Occulus, a closed system rather than an open one. Wonder if they'll be locking down the API which people have already been working with on the development version

Apple store staffers probed like 'criminals', lawsuit claims


Re: Amazon set the precident

Quick look for that case, it sounds like the difference here is that it's being brought under California law rather than federal law. The federal courts were criticised in that case for having weaker protections for employees when doing things like waiting to clock in, which the security checks were classed as the same as


Re: It's fairly common practice.

From the sound of the article though this isn't every few weeks, it's every time employees leave the shop floor (either going on break or leaving after their shift), which is going to add up to a fair bit of time pretty quickly

Undetectable NSA-linked hybrid malware hits Intel Security radar


So by the reasoning of the US government, that'd be an act of war against any country affected by this, right?

Voyager 2 'stopped' last week, and not just for maintenance


Re: How do the manage the fuel

Since it's early NASA, it's also likely that most of the calculations were done by hand and pre-programmed

Jurassic Part: Vertu announces lizard-skin phones


Re: Not just any dead animal

In fairness the cows are already being slaughtered for meat, so the leather is essentially a waste product otherwise. These lizards on the other hand are being killed purely for their decorative skin, which some people might find more objectionable

FBI: Apple and Google are helping ISIS by offering strong crypto


Slightly less tongue in cheek, of the top 6 (since you jump to number 12 after that) we only have definite ways to reduce 1, 2 and 6. Reduction in smoking would reduce #2 by a lot and #6 we don't really know how much it could be impacted since your numbers don't separate type-1 and type-2, only one of which we know how to reduce the chances of.

Surprisingly, stress and smoking both have significant impacts on coronary heart disease, so reducing smoking and reducing stress would help with this a lot (Scotland saw a 10% reduction in CHD after the smoking ban came into place). It can also be caused by diabetes, so reducing that would also reduce CHD. The last primary cause of CHD is cholestorol, which can be caused by diabetese (hence how this can contribute to CHD), smoking (same), lack of exercise, alcohol consumption and obesity.

Diet is also a contributing factor, although there's been questions raised recently on whether this is a direct influence like obesity or alcohol (apparently consumption of cholesterol in foods like eggs is no longer considered to cause increase in the bloodstream as it's broken down during digestion) or whether it's just a case of a bad diet results in obesity and then that's what leads to CHD

Since an increase in exercise would reduce obesity and inherently reduces cholestorol, it would seem to follow that rather than banning fast food or television we should be banning cars so that people have to walk or cycle to work. This would also reduce pollution which would likely reduce issues of lung cancer and lung disease, as well as reducing road traffic accidents, reduce incedents of type 2 diabetes and, since regular exercise can increase endorphins, potentially reduce suicide rates

Oh, and of course there's no reason you have to stick with a single issue which causes deaths at once, so why not deal with guns at the same time as health conditions? It would make your walk to work safer if nothing else


Don't really need to go that far, treating it like a car and requiring a licence with a minimum level of training for safe use would have a huge impact on accidental deaths from guns

Also yes, lets ban coronary heart disease instead!

Why did Snowden swipe 900k+ US DoD files? (Or so Uncle Sam claims)


Re: I know I'm in a minority on here

He was convinced there was criminal activity going on and that his superiors were covering it up, meaning the standard procedure for reporting it was broken. The courts have confirmed that at least some of the activity he leaked was criminal too, so he was right at least to some degree.

Considering the abuses Manning had when she released documents and handed herself in though though (the courts ruled that her treatment constituted pre-trial punishment) and the threats from congressmen about having him executed as an enemy combatant (which would bypass the whole "fair trial" thing) would make it seem unlikely he would actually face justice and more face revenge for revealing criminal activity

Oh, and Congress members have confirmed that they've not been provided any evidence, even after requesting it, that lives were put at risk by his leaks. Which is probably because of the fact that the documents were redacted before being released to prevent that kind of thing happening


Quite likely he just grabbed as many files as he could, but decided not to follow Manning's lead and only released the ones which seemed like evidence of wrong doing

Windows 10 upgrade ADWARE forces its way on to Windows 7 and 8.1


Re: I'm confused

Technically the bible itself wasn't a contemporary source anyway, it was written decades later (I suspect the earliest book written was where you got the 80 years ago) based on the oral traditions of Christians at the time


Re: I'm confused

Because the Council of Nicaea said so I'm guessing

Nice 4G-for-plods demo, Samsung. Good luck actually selling it


Just checking, aren't there usually issues with mobile networks getting jammed with traffic during emergencies? Larger scale ones anyway. Is there anything about this which would get around that?

Dutch efforts to decapitate Pirate Bay could end up before ECJ


Re: Easy Peasy...

Honesly I'd quite like a ruling on this, as it gets pretty murky when you start dealing with things at the remove TPB technically is. If I tell someone about a local guy who sells bootleg DVDs, am I committing a crime by doing so because I'm telling them how to commit a crime? Does it only become a crime to tell them if that person then goes on and buys the DVD, or if I accept money for providing the information?

What a Zuckin' drag! 'Frisco queens protest outside Facebook HQ over 'real names' policy


I might side more with Facebook if they actually responded to emails regarding names being incorrectly blocked. I ended up having to make an account with a deliberate misspelling in mine just so Facebook would accept it as "valid"

Case for drone usage now overwhelming as Enrique Iglesias concert almost stopped


I'm missing the point where him grabbing a currently flying drone out of the air is the fault of the drone or the operator. Bloody stupid thing to be doing

Hardcore creationist finds 60-million-year-old fossils in backyard ... 'No, it hasn’t changed my mind about the Bible'


Re: Evidence.

I've seen people counter comments about how long it would take for starlight to reach us (ie more than 5000 years) as being solved by God creating the universe with the light already en route so it would arrive here on time


Problem there is you then fall into the deceptive god problem, where God would have to have created the world in a way which explicitly contradicted his own gospel, and as a result could result in damnation for people who believe in the evidence of the earth itself over the gospel. I've seen religious folk call this a "test", and others suggest it was actually Satan who added things like fossils, but both run into issues themselves so it seems like most young earth creationists just go with the "we're interpreting the evidence differently" (ie the bible is part of the evidence set and supersedes physical evidence)

Microsoft's certification exams: So easy, a child of six could pass them. Literally


Re: Nice

Most likely the teacher either assumed he was just trying to skive off or they needed to submit the work as evidence of them having done their job. Either way, if your son can just work through the coursework independently and finish it early the teacher should be satisfied (if not then they're the power trip kind of teacher which, while rare, does exist and would probably be annoyed regardless of what he did)

Also good on your son for being willing to consider the usefulness of what he's studying while working on it at a fairly young age. Should be good at handling self guided learning in future

You've come a long way, Inkscape: Open-source Illustrator sneaks up


Honestly GIMP isn't a great example of a FOSS project, the developers have had issues with the idea of implementing features which people mention are present in Photoshop because they don't like being compared, even if the feature is a good one (single window mode for example), and have made some fairly bizarre changes which make sense in terms of logic but not usability (can't save as a jpeg or png anymore, have to export as one which means you still get the "You haven't saved" warnings)

Krita, MyPaint, Blender and Inkscape have made far more rapid progress towards usability because of their willingness to interact with the users and bring them in for advice (Blender has their movie projects, Krita and MyPaint have a professional illustrator as part of the team to give input on usability)

Law changed to allow GCHQ hacking ... just as GCHQ hauled into court for hacking


UK law does actually allow for the laws to be changed retroactively. Whether they should take advantage of that is another issue entirely, but if they can get it through Parliament then it can both criminalise (yes, you can do something legal and then it suddenly becomes illegal after the fact) and de-criminalise past behaviour

Polygraph.com owner pleads guilty to helping others beat lie detector


I's be curious how this would up in court if he'd fought it. Generally something like this would be used for finding evidence of *other* crimes which the person could be charged for, otherwise the charges are made purely based on his intent to commit a crime and not his having committed the crime itself, which is somewhat questionable to say the least

Get paid (airline) peanuts with United's new bug bounty program


So how long until Tesco or another big supermarket starts offering club card points for people who find exploits?

Actually thinking about it, that might actually be *more* practical (since you can actually buy food and drink with them generally)

World of the strange: There will be NINE KINDS of Windows 10


Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

In fairness the download page for Mint actually gives a pretty good overview of what the different options are. They're for different desktop managers and for no codec versions for specific regions where there could be licencing issues with the codecs. They also include links for the different desktop managers for people who aren't sure of the difference

And there's only one Ubuntu, it's just that as an open source platform people are able to branch it to create new projects *based* on Ubuntu. Most of those aren't even supported by Canonical, and those that are (I think around 4?) tend to be for specialist environments like education and aren't on the main download page


Re: "and they're losing faith.'

OpenOffice/LibreOffice do a good job as substitutes for Office, only issue I've heard of is compatibility because of Microsoft doing non-standard stuff with their formats.

Photoshop you've got Lighttable, Darktable, Krita, Gimp and MyPaint, so most things you want to use it for have a program, although in some edge cases there might be a bit more swapping programs than preferred.

AutoCAD I'll give you though, CAD software is a bit of a pain to find on Linux. There's Blender, 3D Coat and a few other 3D modelling applications, but actual CAD software I think is largely limited to 2D CAD

GCHQ puts out open recruitment call for 'white hat' hackers


"Strict legal controls, safeguards and requirements apply to all GCHQ’s activities, which can only be carried out for the statutory purposes and in support of the national security priorities that are set by ministers,"

Didn't they already have the courts rule that some of the things they were doing were illegal, and only got out of it because of the loophole that an employee leaked details of it?

Scot Nationalists' march on Westminster may be GOOD for UK IT


Re: Be Careful what you wish for.@SolidSquid

True, I thought the additional detail was worth mentioning though

Honestly I didn't see much in the way of anti-English sentiment amongst the pro-Independence crowd. There was some I don't doubt, but mostly when people mentioned England in relation to independence it was to clarify that it wasn't England they didn't like, it's being run by Westminster. There was a lot of complaint about how London media companies covered it too, largely that they seemed to claim existance of a lot of anti-English sentiment without really showing any evidence of it, but except for a few outliers most people didn't have any time for that kind of nonsense


I honestly have never heard any of them say that. They complain about how Westminster manages things and that the policies quite often benefit London at the expense of the rest of the UK, but they include cities like Liverpool and Manchester getting a raw deal in that. There seems to be some strange narrative about how the SNP, and Scots who supported them, hate the English, when really they just disagree on the politics of Westminster.

Also I'm not sure how coalition = fix the votes, even if it's an informal coalition


Re: Be Careful what you wish for.

Actually Scotland joined the union because the nobility bankrupted themselves (the Darien Scheme was a private venture, not a state one) and were offered the chance to sell out the country in exchange for their debts being expunged and a seat on the House of Lords. This being before we were a democracy, the nobility were able to do this without public support (the nobles who supported it themselves estimated about 75% opposition by the Scottish population and there were riots across the whole country as a result)


Re: "... would not seek another referendum ..."

Actually I'm talking about Nicola Sturgeon (who's now taken Salmond's position as party leader), who reiterated this after the referendum and since then has been consistent in saying she doesn't intend to push for another referendum (although she raised objection to David Cameron claiming he could prevent a second one)


Re: Leaving the EU

A fairly significant chunk of those who supported independence (and those who opposed it actually) were actually in favour of a federalist system where international issues could be dealt with by Westminster and local issues could be dealt with by local parliaments. If Westminster were running with a similar structure to the EU (limited remit largely covering international issues) then it'd resolve 90% of the complaints Scots have had with how they've managed things


He's got a bit of a problem there, even if he does try and pull back the retoric. Both the EU referendum (if the vote goes for leaving in England but not Scotland) and scrapping the Human Rights Act have the potential to force the UK to split, as both would involve Westminster being in breach of the Scotland Act, the Good Friday Agreement and another I can't remember off hand which applies to Wales (sorry Wales), as all three countries were guaranteed the EU courts as an appeals route


Either that or the English electorate is surprised to find that the SNP, and Scotland as a whole, actually supports the idea of England getting to vote separately on it's own issues (it's actually a party policy for the SNP) and would strongly support moving towards a more federalist system like that.

Also the SNP have been pretty clear that they aren't going to push for another referendum for a while (a "generation" they said, which is usually considered around 20-25 years), with possible exceptions if Westminster tries to push through Europe independence since that violates the Scotland Act and the Good Friday Agreement to boot (actually even the Welsh can get in on that iirc). Generally the SNP seem to have accepted we're staying in the UK and want to do what they can to make sure their constituents are better represented in Westminster instead, which is kind of the point of having a representative democracy


Re: @ M7S

SNP only had candidates for 59 seats, UKIP was campaigning for 624. Even if they only got 5% of the vote in each of those regions, this would swamp the SNP who got an average of 50% of the vote across all of Scotland.

A more useful number would be the percentage of votes per seat they got. While it's not entirely accurate (population count varies between different regions a bit), 650 seats at westminster means around 71,423 voters per seat (based on an electorate of 46,425,386)

UKIP got a total of 3,881,129 across their 624 seats, which would average at 6,220 votes per seat

SNP got a total of 1,454,436 across their 59 seats, which would average at 24,651 votes per seat

So yeah, per seat ran the SNP got a couple hundred short of 4 times the votes which UKIP got in the regions they ran in, it's just that UKIP ran in more places, giving their "total votes" an artificial boost if you use the total electorate as your metric of success

Red-faced Germans halt NSA cooperation after Euro spying revealed


Re: Well...

That our politicians care significantly less about our opinions?

Tesla's battery put in the shade by current and cheaper kit


Re: It isn't supposed to make sense

Don't forget about Cruachan up in Scotland, opened in 1965 and was apparently the world's first reversible pumped storage power stations

Online pizza order saves woman and children from knife-wielding kidnapper


Re: Rather pointless law

No, it's just that "obstructing justice" is a ludicrously broad law which can be applied in a lot of situations, including this one.

Barclaycard axes bonking payments bracelet


Re: whats so good about bonking?

It doesn't actually check the pin when you use the contactless payment, so there's no wait for it to check the pin

Microsoft: It's TRUE, you'll get Android and iOS apps in WINDOWS


Re: Preferences

Not the perfect solution, but cocos2D-x lets you write games (and probably most basic apps) in javascript, lua and c++. Sure it's a framework which is cross platform rather than a language, but it does still seem to do pretty well

Apple Watch HATES tattoos: Inky pink sinks rinky-dink sensor


Re: Hardly a bug, is it...

> Remember your body is a temple.

Ia ia cthulhu fhtagn!

WHY can't Silicon Valley create breakable non-breakable encryption, cry US politicians


In this case though it's... kind of out of juristiction? I mean the FBI can assist the local law enforcement in whatever country the offender is in, but if they're outside of the US and committing crimes then it really should be the country they're in who enforce the law against them (assuming whatever it is is against the law in that country)

If you're talking about someone committing a crime in one country then leaving to go live in another (whether the one they were originally from or not), then the evidence which got them a warrant plus evidence they were in the country at the time should be sufficient for extradition


Re: Imagine a world without the Interthingy

Pretty sure I remember a story a few years back where it was discovered Al Quaeda had been using steganography to hide messages in innocuous images and then just posting them publically, and because of the way staganography works none of the FBI's tools for detecting illicit communications had been picking it up.

So they are using the internet, just being smart about it

Grooveshark faces $750 MEELLION piracy payout


While there's a good chance he's right, is it really the job of a judge to tell the jury that someone's actions were willful? Surely that's something the prosecution is supposed to prove in court?

LenovOUCH expands bits-blistering bodgy battery boomerang


I should probably be annoyed at this since I've got a laptop on this list, but mostly I'm just thinking it's pretty damn handy that my old, refurbished laptop is going to be getting a nice new shiny battery which will extend it's lifespan direct from the manufacturer

FBI alert: Get these motherf'king hackers off this motherf'king plane


Why on earth do they have the public/customer wifi on the same network as the actual plane systems? Surely it can't be that difficult to run one network for customers to get their wifi and a second which is purely for official stuff and locked down to anyone not an employee?


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