* Posts by knottedhandkerchief

32 posts • joined 6 Aug 2013

Boffins put the FUN into fungus by rigging yeast to squirt out the active ingredients in cannabis

knottedhandkerchief

"My understanding is that once a virus mutates to become more virulent, it also becomes less contagious." - evolution doesn't care about the effects, it's unthinking. Something could mutate to kill 100% of its target, thereby killing itself, and not "care".

A highly virulent virus (as in the case of HIV) can become less virulent over time, as by killing fewer of its targets it succeeds in spreading further (not necessarily by being more contagious, just by the host living for longer, so has more chance of spreading the disease).

'Cuddly' German chat app slacking on hashing given a good whacking under GDPR: €20k fine

knottedhandkerchief

Re: Wouldn't know about MS, but banks...

HSBC, FirstDirect and Charles Stanley do similar. I notice a pattern - only about six or so combinations are requested, so I guess they hash all those combinations.

How an augmented reality tourist guide tried to break my balls

knottedhandkerchief
Childcatcher

Re: You're too old, Mr. Dabbs...

And of course all of them are 7" tall like their avatar in games.

Seven inches tall? Or are they referring to the one-eyed monster?

Chromebooks gain faff-free access to Windows file shares via Samba

knottedhandkerchief

Re: I don't know why...

Google engineers (as they call devs there) used Goobuntu from 2012 to earlier this year. It's recently been replaced with gLinux, based more directly on Debian.

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

OMG! Battle looms over WTF! trademarks

knottedhandkerchief
Headmaster

May...

"A trademark is registered for specific use(s) as defined in the application and includes such things as colours, graphics and typeface as part of the definition."

Recently I made a trademark application, and was granted it. I used a made up word only - without specifying any colours, graphics or typeface. That means for the specified uses, the word is trademarked regardless of appearance. So the above should read: "A trademark is registered for specific use(s) as defined in the application and may include such things as colours, graphics and typeface as part of the definition."

Nah, it won't install: The return of the ad-blocker-blocker

knottedhandkerchief

> Took me AGES to find a baseball cap without a logo

M&S

MSDN unleashes a fresh round of unintentional innuendo bingo

knottedhandkerchief

Used to use an old Wheatstone Bridge, it had many knobs to twiddle with - and a brass plate on the front proudly proclaimed the provenance to be none other than Wayne Kerr.

Want to know what an organisation is really like? Visit the restroom

knottedhandkerchief

ditto restaurants

Checking restaurant loos also tells you a lot about a restaurant's hygiene. If they can't be bothered to keep loos hygienic, what about less visible places such as stores and kitchens?

ASA tells Poundland and its teabagging elf: Enough with the smutty social ninja sh*t

knottedhandkerchief

Re: My idea of a perfect date

Sweet, brown and very sticky.

ATM fees shake-up may push Britain towards cashless society

knottedhandkerchief

Re: Link ATM?

There's a reason for the prompting of checking your bank balance. "Free" cash machines at places other than banks (i.e. Link) get a small kickback from the balance checks (as well as from providing the cash). That's what pays for its existence.

There's a way to dodge Fasthosts' up-to-160% domain renewal hike but you're not gonna like it

knottedhandkerchief

Moved all from fasthosts to lcn.com (mostly .co.uk) - very smooth and easy, and very nice user interface, bodes well. Chat was answered immediately. Free transfer of .co.uk and kept the remaining term, and exactly half the price of fasthosts after their rise, and discount price breaks. Shame about the lack of free privacy, though for individuals, not needed for .co.uk

'My PC needs to lose weight' says user with FAT filesystem

knottedhandkerchief
Facepalm

Re: Windows 98

We had a computer science module on my uni course, and I politely suggested he open an 8" floppy disk himself to see. He had just told us it contained a square of magnetic film. That was late 70s. Feeling old?

'Crazy bad' bug in Microsoft's Windows malware scanner can be used to install malware

knottedhandkerchief

"Windows has a customer commitment to investigate reported security issues, and proactively update impacted devices as soon as possible."

Reactively, Shirley?

Put down the coffee, stop slacking your app chaps or whatever – and patch Wordpress

knottedhandkerchief

Re: All plugins?

No, this is core. WP plugins are updated by their authors and have their own updates. They can vary enormously in their quality and maintenance.

'Grey technology' should be the new black

knottedhandkerchief

Just bought a Chromebook for my mother's 80th birthday. She's never used a computer before, but wanted to keep in touch, see family photos etc. Loved the "what's that jiggling fly thing?" (it was the mouse cursor). Looked up some introductory books for Chromebook - and even they assumed too much, e.g. started comparing them with PCs, Macs, talk about USB sockets etc. But she's pleased, and will learn bit by bit.

I still have my final year BSc project thesis - hand-written assembler, which I manually converted into machine code for entry with a hexadecimal keyboard into an UV-EEPROM.

Macs don't get viruses? Hahaha, ha... seriously though, that Word doc could be malware

knottedhandkerchief

A customer (running an e-commerce site) contacted me as they were blitzing their customers with spam. Turned out to be from a Macbook running Office, I was able to tell simply by looking at the headers of emails that I also received from them. Naturally, when the first client complaints came in, they switched off their PC, also on the network. It was just before Christmas, so they were in a total panic as the Mac was running their labelling and enquiries. They got Mac support specialists round to fix it, which they did (on a Sunday evening in countryside). Anyway, none of this surprised me, obviously MS Office macros of some sort. What is the point of this article? Writing this on a Linux Mint Mate...

Mr Angry pays taxman with five wheelbarrows worth of loose change

knottedhandkerchief

I can never remember what IIRC and IANAL stand for...

How Google.org stole the Christmas Spirit

knottedhandkerchief

Try BT mydonate, it's free, and collects Gift Aid. Am using it with a couple of charities I help out. A £10 donation by credit card raises £12.37 after the 13p CC processing fee. No percentage cuts or monthly charges.

http://www.btplc.com/mydonate/Help/FAQs/FAQsforcharities/index.aspx

Blu Vivo 6: Top value trendsetter marred by Chino-English mangle

knottedhandkerchief

Re: Moto G4 plus

I got it the G4 plus, 16GB ROM, 2GB RAM, dual SIM, for £165 at Amazon.co.uk on Black Friday. Extremely pleased with it, excellent camera and Qualcomm (far better GPS than others). Was going to buy it earlier, but decided to wait for Black Friday and proven right ;-)

WordPress auto-update server had flaw allowing anyone to add anything to websites worldwide

knottedhandkerchief

Re: "HTML and CSS combined with judicious usage of a JavaScript..."

Serif Webplus would be useful for an individual responsible for a website. It's not a CMS or blogging platform - you can't login online to the website and update or add pages, posts there. I'm sticking with WordPress as "better the devil you know", using Updraft Plus for pushing daily backups (keeping several historical copies in case intrusion not detected early enough) so can recover quickly if it is compromised. I look after about 50 sites and never had a single incident - probably due to using only the most well-known and maintained plugins, and update frequently.

The ability to recover is essential. Far too many WP sites have no backup whatsoever - the slightest compromise means rebuilding from scratch - have just taken over such an incident, painful.

Password strength meters promote piss-poor paswords

knottedhandkerchief

Work insists on a change every two months. This just results in a common password with the month after it, e.g. PasswordAugust. What is the benefit of regularly changing passwords, really?

Bloaty banking app? There's a good chance it was written in Britain

knottedhandkerchief

Reading the various comments, it seems LOC went out of favour whenever the commenter graduated.

For me, it was scorned in the 70s. It was a bean-counters metric, and showed that much understanding.

Confused by crypto? Here's what that password hashing stuff means in English

knottedhandkerchief

Salts?

Good of El Reg to have bluffer's guides, but no mention of salts with hashing? A fundamental requirement, otherwise if you've got a table with lots of hashed passwords, just look for matching pairs and you can be pretty sure they are weak passwords, crackable with a dictionary of common passwords. Solution is to store the hash and a random salt in the table.

Back to school: Six of the smartest cheap 'n' cheerful laptops

knottedhandkerchief

Don't forget second hand options.

Bought a ThinkPad T410 for £120 off eBay, added Linux Mint Mate on an SSD and it flies. What more is needed? Tough and easy to repair. T420 and T430 are also available at about £100 increments - a couple of sellers have sold 1000s at 100% reputation, mine came looking well clean, OH and LO thought was new.

Number 5 is alive! VirtualBox the fifth debuts

knottedhandkerchief

Re: Link?

Press the Ctrl key if you want a new tab. Standard in browsers. If it opened in a new window, there's no way to override that behaviour.

Ding-dong, the cloud calling: The Ring Video Doorbell

knottedhandkerchief

Re: Question

The wired.com review mentions additional users can be registered to receive notifications. Doubt the sound would be relayed back though, or even than more than one person can answer it simultaneously...

knottedhandkerchief

Use with wireless doorbell?

Not normally an early adopter, but decided to go for this, as work from home at the end of the garden. It was £147 inc postage to blighty.

We have a wireless doorbell at present, ringing bells upstairs and in said end-of-the-garden office. Sounds good to me if the Ring thing works without pressing the bell as then we can have the best of both worlds.

Before the wireless arrangement we had wired to a battery (6V total, 4 x D cell) doorbell. Can it take power off that? What exactly do they mean by a wired doorbell in terms of voltage and battery consumption? From the ring.com website: Power Input: 8-24 VAC or 5 VDC @ 1 A so looks like I'll have to jig something up. The photo on their website is worrying - the "2 screws" to support it are for a backplate, then it looks like the rest of it just clips on - making stealing (and recharging) easy...

The review on wired.com suggests multiple users can get notifications - you have to add them as "approved users".

They don't recognise us as HUMAN: Disability groups want CAPTCHAs killed

knottedhandkerchief

Re: Javascript

Does it work with screen-readers for the blind?

knottedhandkerchief

Honeypots

Anyone used honeypots, and do they work with screen readers?

A honeypot is a form field that is hidden by CSS or JavaScript. If a bot fills it in, it's dead. Suitable for small sites, not where expecting dedicated, customised attacks. Nothing extra for humans to fill.

knottedhandkerchief

Re: They're useless anyway

Although not perfect, "honeypots" are a good enough alternative. They require CSS and/or Javascript, and assume the spammers are attacking all sites generally, not specifically (e.g. hotmail), and not using cheap labour. For small sites, it's perfect, and what I use.

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