* Posts by SolidSquid

676 posts • joined 13 May 2013


GDS monopoly leaves UK.gov at risk of IT cock-ups, warns report


Re: Government technocrats

Not sure which way to vote to be honest. I disagree with you on some of the details (RoR is hardly new, and if you're building a web based system COBOL isn't going to be much help even if you can even find enough people to do the work), but the general gist of it you do make a fair point. If people have stable jobs they know they'll be in long term and are able to make decisions on how things are done, generally they'll try and do things in a way that won't screw them over in the long run. Unfortunately short term savings rule the roost now, both in government and industry, and it's rare that people have enough influence to push through a decision which is the right one rather than the cheapest or fastest one

Trading Standards pokes Amazon over 'libellous' review


Re: Perhaps

I suspect that cold calling companies are using auto-dialers to make the initial connection then the next available agent takes over when someone answers, or just before. This would increase the efficiency, and I seem to remember hearing these places generally just have a button the agent presses when they finish a call to connect to the next one

Yay, we're all European (Irish) now on Twitter (except Americans)


Re: You're damned either way

If it's explicitly an EU company then the US would have trouble enforcing any US based laws against them without proving they've committed a criminal offence in the US or targeting the US, and what they can do is largely controlled by various international treaties. They might be able to make things awkward for the employees, but actual criminal charges would be pretty difficult to push for


Re: @solidquid

Possibly, although that depends on whether the company actually wants to cooperate in the first place. In the case of Twitter (and Microsoft in the case you mentioned) the parent company explicitly doesn't want to provide the data, and the employees provide a perfect loophole to make it possible for them to refuse. Also, if the EU branch of Twitter is a separate company (someone mentioned it might be incorporated as Twitter International) then that company could refuse to cooperate and any employees would be fine for future prospects.

Regarding the Microsoft case, the US are demanding the data but I don't think they've actually been able to force the issue yet, and Microsoft are putting up a fight over it. Them demanding the data doesn't necessarily constitute a legal requirement to provide the data


Just to expand a little on this, I'm pretty sure you also can't fire someone for not breaking the law on your behalf without opening yourself up to massive lawsuits, so the EU employees would likely be able to refuse to provide the data with impunity.

That's right: FBI agents can't pretend to be ISP repairmen to search homes without a warrant


Technically as a police officer you *don't* get the right to shoot someone outside of cases where other people can, it's still supposed to be limited to threat to the life of yourself or another. It's just that cops are generally considered to have better judgement with regards to this due to having received training

The data centre design that lets you cool down – and save electrons


Re: Immersion ...

part of the issue in a data centre might have been that full immersion requires a vertical access route to keep all the liquid contained. This means that traditional server racks (which ave space by stacking vertically with a horizontal access route) wouldn't be compatible and the floor space needed probably wouldn't be viable

Mega fatcat Kim Dotcom in deportation drama over SPEEDING ticket


Re: please don't be offended, BUT(t?)

Technically they are trying to prosecute him for... I think it was conspiracy to commit something or other? Whatever it was *is* on the books, but is a shaky enough accusation it'll probably be dropped if he's ever actually extradited. The suspicion is the only reason it's been tagged on to there is there's a requirement in the extradition treaty that it needs to be a crime in both countries for extradition to happen

Gwyneth Paltrow flubs $29 food stamp dare, swallows pride instead


Re: How can you fail with that?

I don't know, having just short of £3/day for all your food and drink seems like it'd be tricky to achieve. Possible, but require a lot of planning


Re: A matter of perspective ...

I'm sure I remember her being involved in some niche diet things in the past, so I suspect she just isn't aware of how people have to buy in order to keep prices low enough for this (the spread shown in the article pic, while definitely healthy, also seems to confirm this)

What's that THUD sound? It's your Lumia's best feature after unflashing Windows 10


Re: Tut tut tut

The article mentions at least one person using the system recovery tool *without* installing the technical preview though, which implies that the issue is the recovery tool rather than the technical preview

Scouts' downed Compass database won't be back 'til autumn


Seems like they're taking the "Be Prepared" approach to whether their system has been compromised or not, independent audit and shutting down the system until it can be secured seems to be pretty much bang on what they should do (outside of, y'know, securing it in the first place)

Hybrid IT? Not a long-term thing, says AWS CTO


They sort of have a point with the security, it's a bit like storing money in a bank rather than under a matress. But while you're more likely to have the money stolen if someone breaks into your house, that doesn't mean that bank robberies don't happen, and I don't think Amazon has discussed the safe guards they have in place or the insurance they have to cover it if/when someone manages to compromise their system

Stateside security screeners sacked for squeezing 'sexy' sacks


Re: Can't charge...what rubbish.

Considering it's generally not the victim who decides if charges are pressed, it's the courts themselves (to prevent victims being pressured into not pressing charges), they don't actually need the passenger to cover it. Similarly, while you generally have a right to face your accuser in court (which I suspect would be the reason they gave here), the fact that one of them confessed means you have an accuser right there

'Arkansas cops tried to hack me with malware-ridden hard drive'


Re: Whoa, whoa, whoa ....

Where does it mention a forensic computer security outfit? This was a lawyer being provided with evidence by the police on an external drive, and the lawyer decided to get the drive checked before plugging it in. The drive itself wasn't an actual piece of evidence, just contained evidence for the lawyer to review


Good chance it's the first time a lawyer has been computer savvy enough to consider it a risk and get the drive checked

Revealed: The AMAZING technology behind Apple's $1299 Retina MacBooks – a lot of glue


Re: What's stopping them...

The main reason they've given for wanting to scrap SIM cards on phones is they want to produce an iPhone which is an entirely sealed case, which currently they can't do due to consumer rights laws regarding being able to switch networks (with the network being controlled by the SIM). If they were able to and it was cost effective, they absolutely would produce a laptop that was entirely sealed too


Re: Objection!

I'd probably say that Apples, on the whole, are better than the average Windows laptop in terms of reliability. Whether they're better than *equivalent priced* Windows laptops is another matter though, and I suspect you're right that it's not any better, it's just that cheaper laptops have given people the impression of non-Mac machines as being unreliable (although that said, I've got a 6 year old netbook and maybe 10 year old laptop boxed away which are perfectly useable for everyday stuff and haven't broken down yet)

Easy ... easy ... Aw CRAP! SpaceX rocket ALMOST lands on ocean hoverbase


Re: Which is it?

iirc they didn't use graphite pencils, they used wax pencils which broke less, didn't create dust and were less of a problem even if they did break (insulator, so no short circuits, and soft enough to reduce the chance of jamming anything)

Dev gives HBO free math tips to nail Game of Thrones pirate leakers


4 episodes is a bit much for that, if it had been the first episode or first and second at low quality maybe, but 4 is a decent chunk of the series and wouldn't really get you much more publicity than 1

Tech troll's podcasting patent blown out of the water by EFF torpedo


The rounded corners thing came more under a trademark than it did patent law (I think it was trade dress or something it was called?), and while I'd agree that 1-Click Shopping is a bullshit patent, it's not really the EFF's job to go about trying to undermine every patent. Trying to sue people for producing podcasts falls more under a "limiting freedom of speech" category of problem, which is more withing the EFF's remit than the design of a phone or a checkout method

Daddy Dyson keeps it in the family and hoovers up son’s energy biz


Number of times I've seen a Henry being used in offices or by cleaning crews is ridiculous for something that's supposed to be a consumer model

Videogame publishers to fans: Oi, stop resurrecting our dead titles online


As I understood it, this wasn't about uploading the games themselves online but rather about people either bypassing online checks for licences if the licence check server has gone offline or setting up third party servers for multiplayer (where possible). The point is people should be able to play games they've bought legally even after the publisher has decided to stop supporting it, and if they can find a work around then they should be allowed to roll with that without it breaking the law

ICANN urges US, Canada: Help us stop the 'predatory' monster we created ... dot-sucks!


Re: Or, in other words.

Interestingly icann.sucks redirects to an Apache2 Ubuntu server default holding page, but the other iterations of ICANN redirect to icann.org. Wonder if someone nabbed .sucks before they had a chance to

Daniel Radcliffe to feature in GTA biopic flick. Well, it's work at least


> Presumably the film will also cover the infamous incident where Rockstar lied about inserting sexual content into one of its games and then falsely blaming hackers.

iirc they disabled the content, but users could use a mod to gain access to it? Been a while, so don't remember for certain, but pretty sure it wasn't actually part of what they intended users to get access to in the game. Also it was basically dry humping, the people involved were still fully clothed because they never finished the scenes

NSA director: We share most of the [crap] bugs we find!


Re: The NSA.....

Missed the article I suspect

Barry Obama declares national emergency over foreign hackers


Re: Test post

Test successful


Re: The opposite situation

It's a perfectly reasonable point to raise, and not just a "ali hat foil wearer" statement. The US is believed to be the most likely source of the Stuxnet virus which targeted Iranian reactors, cables released by Snowden revealed the US spying on foreign leaders during G8, including their allies, and numerous other incidents. Whether it's right or not, the fact is they're apparently now claiming that nobody else is allowed to do that to them even though they're doing it to others

Also there's a good chance that the previous poster isn't from the US since their focus was on what the US does to the rest of the world, which means they have no ability to influence acts by the US government whatsoever under any democratic system, so comments about democracy being hard and Nigeria are completely irrelevant (especially the Nigeria one, not sure what the relevance of that is even if they *are* American)

Encryption is the REAL threat – Head Europlod


Re: Headache eh?

Wasn't there an article a while back where the FBI admitted that Al Quaeda had been using steganography to hid messages in images posted to Facebook and they hadn't been able to detect that?

Flak for Slack chaps in yak app hack flap: User database whacked


Re: Slack app? Never heard of it!

It's got a few bells and whistles added to it, like being able to generate a message on an accepted pull request in GIT, but otherwise it's IRC polished up so that it's easier to sell management on. You can even connect to it using IRC clients (we have it in the office technically, but it's rarely used)

'If people can encrypt their cell phones, what's stopping them encrypting their PCs?'


There's a difference between the government spying on someone and a judge issuing a court order for the purposes of pursuing a criminal investigation. If the FBI has a particular document which they want you to hand over, the court can subpoena it and/or issue a warrant to search your premises for it. This isn't considered an infringement on privacy as it's supposed to be targeted, and from the way he describes things in the video it sounds like this is what he's concerned about being blocked rather than spying.

Essentially he's asking how he's supposed to handle a case where they literally can't obtain data which they know is in the possession of the defendant, and even know where it's stored (he used the analogy of an unbreakable safe)


Re: Congressman John Carter

You might have a point there actually, judges are hired for their understanding of the law and ability to interpret/apply it and will hire specialists to explain things like encryption if it's not something they've had experience of. He seems to have twigged on to what most people who are more tech savvy are already aware of and has thought through the logic of it to the last point, and there's legal precedent for that which he'd be able to read up on if it ever actually came up in his court room.

What's worrying though is that not a single person in that room apparently was aware that it already exists and was willing to explain it to him. Instead someone just said "I knew we'd get some wisdom from the judge" and then moved on, either betraying an ignorance of the subject which is frankly astonishing or brushing off concerns of someone who at some point is very likely to need information on that subject in order for the law to be correctly enforced

Microsoft and Oracle are 'not your trusted friends', public sector bods


Re: So, give them the boot - use open source.

I think it's more the idea of switching to Libre Office for document editing, using a mail server other than Exchange for handling mail accounts, etc. Switching to Linux for everything is a pretty big hurdle, and an OS change wouldn't have much of an impact on actual costs while increasing difficulties for users

Also, things like taking council tax payments will usually be developed in house or contracted out specially due to the complex business logic, so aren't really an accurate comparison since there's not really a *closed* source option either


While limited, there are open source implementations for both Java and C#, and C# in particular is being pushed more into the open source arena


I think it's more that they lose track of the number of licences currently installed, and without an easy way to track it (which I don't think they come with), you end up with people thinking they have valid licences to spare when they're actually short

Assange™ lawyers demand Swedish prosecution files or no London interview


Re: He twists and he turns

In most cases the statute of limitations would only apply if the court proceedings had not been initiated for a set duration. Since they already have (and they're trying to bring him into custody) he can't argue this case. I suspect what he's actually trying to do is to make his prosecution such a black mark, both for the cost involved and his framing it as him being detained for over 1000 days that they'll eventually give up. It's not *likely* but if he's guilty it might be the only hope he's got. Then first chance he gets he disappears to Equador

Swedish city demands £40,000 to repair teenage hacking spree


Was expecting to see claims that he'd deleted files or something, but if they've pretty much confirmed all he did was view the passwords then frankly they should be paying to secure it properly themselves (as they should have done in the first place). If it was really as easy to access as he's making it out to be then the only safe assumption is that the system was already compromised by others too. Sounds like they're trying to get someone else to foot the bill for what they should have done themselves

Massive DDoS racks up $30,000-a-day Amazon bill for China activists


I'd agree, but it might depend on what mitigation they've put in place already (eg Cloudflare) in case of this. If they've actually made an effort to prevent it and it's not been enough though then I don't see any justification Amazon could give for keeping charging

Sick of Chrome vs Firefox? Check out these 3 NEW browsers


Re: A real alternative

Was going to crack a joke comparing it to Netscape, but Netscape actually seems to have been updated during it's lifetime to a better design than this


Isn't that just a browser bundled in Sandboxie?

Web geeks grant immortality to Sir Terry Pratchett – using smuggled web code


Re: This makes me so happy

He mentioned either in Going Postal or in one of his Science of Discworld books that the technology for this existed over a century ago and was used for short distance signalling and that the books were just applying it on a larger scale a la the internet or telegram. He might well have gotten the idea from Keith Roberts (not familiar with the work, probably going to look it out now), but it's also possible they both had the same original sources.

Also there's no guild running the Clacks yet, although that sort of starts getting set up towards the end of the book, and the company running it has money but not much political clout, there is no Guild of Signallers. There is a company running it, but while rich they have little in the way of political clout

Still, interesting observation and no reason not to be bringing it up. Considering his (somewhat joking) suggestion of education by way of finding a library and reading everything, I think he'd very much approve of you pointing out other books with similar themes and technologies which might interest people

BOFH: The ONE-NINE uptime solution


Surprised it wasn't just called Nine Uptime. Is it up? Nein!

Timeout, Time Lords: ICANN says there is only one kind of doctor


Re: .MD

My doctorate is a meta study on the recent proliferation of meta studies as a subject of a doctoral thesis. There's a lot of self reflection and so far I'm at n+1 levels of recursion


Re: Sadly the wrong answer.

In which case you limit it to people with an M.D. from an accredited school. At that point it's pretty much following the same rules everything else will

edit: Although admittedly this runs afoul of the issue someone else raised, that not all doctors (including medical ones) have an M.D.

Zuck: Get your FULLY EXPOSED BUTTOCKS off my Facebook


Pretty sure they were banning breast feeding pics too, at least for a while

Brute force box lets researchers, Cops, pop iDevice locks


Re: Just Wait

And sold the device to the cops when they realised there was more money in it?

Swedish prosecutors finally agree to London interview for Assange™


On the part about them dropping the case against him, I'm sure they dropped one charge but were still investigating the second accusation which is what was brought against him by Marianne Ny. Regardless, his lawyer admitted in the high court hearing to knowing before they left Sweden that Sweden was still doing investigations and intended to bring him in for further questioning

I BEG YOU, mighty Jobs, TAKE MY LIVER, Cook told Apple's dying co-founder


So the article I checked to verify the alternative remedies quoted his wife saying Jobs was reluctant to go under the knife for anything, and that that was a large part of the reason why he went for alternative remedies. Going under for a slim chance of drawing things out (which is all he could really have done at this point) was probably out of the question for him


Considering he tried to do the alternative medicine route to beat his cancer it doesn't surprise me that he'd object to a transplant. That said, his cancer had metastacised, so his survival chances weren't high even *with* a new liver

Universal Credit could take 10 YEARS to finish, says Labour MP


Re: Ah

The idea is good, but the implementation has been so abysmal that they'd probably be better going back and just re-doing it from scratch, with the gradually staged roll outs to test it for suitablility which they should have had in the first place


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