* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16449 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

UK's climate change dept abolished, but 'smart meters and all our policies strong as ever'

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"Why do you think TM put The BoJoTM in the FO?"

To start WWIII?

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Re: Consumer benefits are not falling!

"Or banging off the oven on Sunday 'cos you can no longer afford to roast the Sunday joint."

Or when it's half cooked because the price has just gone up? Invite Sam & Ella round for lunch.

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Re: All for doing away with meter reader

"The idea of a chap or a chapess trotting from home to home reading a meter seems about as necessary as having the egg-man or the ice-man calling round."

We used to have both and egg-man and an ice-cream man. We miss them.

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In Saturday's Times Matthew Paris was musing on the Conservative party's nut-cases (that might not have been the exact term he used) who will never be content with anything - Brexit won't be exit enough etc. It struck me that one way to deal with them would be to "promote" them to a department with a death march project and then, after the next PAC/NAO report condemning the lack of progress, publicly label them as incompetent and replace them with the next in line. It might seem cynical to do this rather than put someone competent in charge but the definition of a death march project is that it's unsalvageable so this simply re-purposes them.

I think Leadsom has been set up to fail with both smart meters and the rural payments scheme on her plate.

Windows 10 a failure by Microsoft's own metric – it won't hit one billion devices by mid-2018

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Re: Telemetry is not the issue...

"I'm sorry to all who's sole concern is hiding dodgy stuff on their computer"

Are you saying that using a computer for online banking, buying stuff online, doing commercial-in-confidence work etc is dodgy?

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Re: 350M is a failure? LOL

Given the effort that's gone into trying to force it onto every PC in sight I think you have to accept that 350M is indeed a failure.

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Re: 1 Billion?

"you know it's definitely all gone."

Unless it restores itself from UEFI.

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Re: "run MS Office"

"It's a bit of a culture shock but I'm happy with the end result."

I had a trial run at BSD some months ago. It depends where you're coming from. My background includes Unix V7, System III, HP-UX, SCO, Dynix and various other Sys-Vs so another Unix version is just another Unix version.

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Re: analysis of the CEO and management style

"they threatened to ban me over my writing style"

So they're not wrong all the time?

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Re: increasing customer delight

"Sure, it's not uncommon for a sales droid to be a litte out of touch with reality"

Not uncommon? It's part of the job description.

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Re: Perhaps ....

"I suspect your sampling is likely 90% liberal arts and fine arts students."

Not necessarily. Macs run Unix S/W so some of the scientists & engineers could be using them but most of the rest will be on Linux.

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Re: The penguin struggles to reach 4% market share with a free product

"Having a rude, abusive and harassing pseudo-hipster CEO is not a commercial advantage."

CEO? I suppose some of the distros are from businesses with CEOs. Others just have project leaders.

Oh, did you mean Linus? He's not a CEO. If you're going to criticise you'd do much better if you got your facts right first.

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Re: "run MS Office"

"Why Windows?"

Because it would probably take more than her school career to wean her teachers off it.

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Re: "run MS Office"

@ Updraft102

8 plus Classic Shell is a possibility. I have a 7/8.1 on order so have the option. I'll probably set it up dual boot. Linux only would probably be a mistake as her teachers will probably expect her to use Windows.

You might be new to Linux, as an old Unixer I've been using it for years. My take is that with systemd distros are getting less Unix-like so, from my POV, worse. So my next move will be to BSD once Wheezy is no longer the basis for Debian LTS..

Wine, in my estimation, made a big mis-step years ago when they broke use of video-drivers from that minor H/W player Intel that used 24-bit colour. It didn't affect Office 97 but it did resulted in a whole lot of other bug reports from users of various other applications. The really stupid thing was that they kept sending out bug reports asking if the bug was still present event though they were refusing to fix it, having turned down a patch. According to them it was a feature added for performance reasons.

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"I understood that all the obnoxious bits of W10 have been backported to Win7"

It will start off as a clean W7 so the updates can be selective. I have a week or so to do the research.

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I wonder if this is the start of backing away from what's proved to be, shall we say, less popular than was hoped, that Windows 10 won't be the "last Windows" unless you count Windows 10.1 which won't be forced on anyone, won't have telemetry, won't have smash and grab T&Cs and may even be popular. And Wataworld will be telling us how bad W10 really was.

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Re: The penguin struggles to reach 4% market share with a free product

"Googles slightly shady front-end is not really the same as GNU/Linux."

OTOH after Microsoft's UI adventures of the last few years if you were to take a Win 7 user and show them KDE, W8 & W910 they might be hard pushed to say which was & wasn't Windows.

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Re: "run MS Office"

I think the solution will be a Win 7 machine* which may well be dual-boot by the start of term. Unless they extend the free upgrade "due to demand" it'll just miss that by the time I give it to her. If the school has a bulk licence agreement for any form of Office they can provide that, otherwise - or also - it'll be LO.

*According to Laptops Direct website they still have W7 stock. As soon as I finish this cuppa I'll drive over there and see.

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Re: I'd add

"you can keep all of your personal settings by tarballing /home"

Easier still. Have /home on its own partition & don't reformat it. Same with /opt & maybe /usr/local.

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Re: Perhaps ....

'Its a damn shame they will never know what UNIX or POSIX really was. Only a "modern" hairball pretending.'

It's only a short step from Linux to a real Unix. BSD is still there. I wonder what SCO could have become if they'd tried. (For those whose horizon doesn't extend beyond the litigation, SCO, under its original management, was a very capable Unix system on Intel processors. It took a very long time for Linux distros to catch up with them. They might not have been able to compete on free-as-in-beer but if they'd cut prices to be affordable they could have competed on quality.)

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Re: Perhaps ....

'"Whats also interesting is how many college types I talk to who are just using a penguin now."

Businesses are where it is at; lose them and you lose the game.'

And, of course, today's college types become the next generation of business decision makers.

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Re: Perhaps ....

'As for the "we're focusing on mobile" - well, that says it all.'

I suspect that when "focusing on mobile" is translated it means "we were counting on that and look how its working out".

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Re: Amazing

"the world's first human-shaped Mobius strip"

You should be entitled to a second upvote just for this.

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"I'm less bothered by the existence of the telemetry than I am by how shady MS implemented them."

You should be bothered by more than the implementation; the implementation can be changed at will by an update you can't block. The real problem is the open-ended nature of the T&Cs which, at least last time I looked, let them gather your log-in credentials and transactions without limits, not just your creds & transactions with MS.

This gives me a problem this weekend. I have a granddaughter with an upcoming birthday about to move to secondary school where she will need access to a computer which should be able to run MS Office (I'm not convinced they'd know the difference if she turned in work from LO in MS formats). We're thinking of getting her a laptop. So do I get her a Win 7 version, still available new if Laptops Direct website is to be believed, which will be EOL before she finishes school or something that will own her as much as she owns it?

Brit chip biz ARM legs it to Softbank for $32bn

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Re: Doubling the size of the operation..

"I've read that they intend to double the size of the op to 6000 developers."

This is the sort of Krafty statement that's customary in such circumstances. Believe it when you see it.

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"I see Softbank are suggesting doubling the (UK) workforce."

"Well, they would say that, wouldn't they?"

If they suggested anything else I'm sure there'd be some sort of hurdles put in their way. Let's wait and see.

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"@intel will be hurting even more"

I think you'll find it's spelled Intel, upper case I, no @. Maybe you thought you were somewhere else?

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Re: Oh but the premium

"According to the reports I read, this is a CASH purchase. Where's the debt?"

Mizuho bank according to http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-36822806

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Re: Apple will never own ARM (again)

"I could believe it's as simple as SB having a huge mound of cash"

To say nothing of being made much cheaper by the pound plummeting since the referendum.

This "taking back control" is going so well, isn't it?

Trump? Terror? Turkey? Whoa, there's a Tentacool in that Bush...

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Re: The surreal part is that

"In the last two weeks we've acquired small herds of folks."

That would be all we need here, with had herds of numpty cyclists ever since the Tour de France. My best home is that they'll collide and take each other out.

Softbank promises stronger ARM: Greater overseas reach and double the UK jobs

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Re: ARM is a strategic asset

"We aren't in TTIP just yet."


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Re: its Cadbury Schwepps all over again

Yes, I was thinking the offer to double the workforce sounded like a Krafty move.

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"vote of confidence in the British economy"

More like the result of the vote of no confidence that manifested itself in the drop in the pound. Any decent home-grown companies we might have had left are now in the bargain basement.

IPO spews email addresses to hundreds of recipients. Twice

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Re: "we've taken appropriate steps to ensure this doesn't happen again."

'Define "appropriate steps".'

"We'll get it right on the second attempt in future."

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Re: Why oh why...

"a marketing mail that should be sent in an appropriate manner"

To /dev/null

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Re: Why oh why...

Amend the the message to "You are about to send $NUMBER people each other's email addresses. Many of them won't want to have their address given away like this. Some of them will object very seriously and may sue your company. At the very least you will look stupid. You may get fired. Do you want to have your comany sued, look stupid and maybe lose your job?"


Ad blockers responsible for rise in upfront TV ad sales, claims report

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Re: Wrong stats

"My educated guess is that there is a very strong correlation."

And my further educated guess is that those who are buying on-net search for what they want. By the time the blocked ads arrive the purchase has already been made.

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Re: What the eye doesn't see, the heart doesn't grieve over.

"So the advertisers would prefer not to spend their money on a medium where they can see how many people are blocking their ads. And instead spend it on a medium where they can't tell how many people are FF-ing past them during the breaks?"

The advertising industry has always be regarded as snake-oil salesmen. What you need to understand is to whom the snake-oil is being sold. It's not the viewers, it's the advertisers.

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They still haven't worked out that their crap is no more welcome on TV than it is online.

FTC lets Nest off the hook over Revolv IoT hub bricking shame

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Re: simples

"Watch as the insurance industry gears up to offer this as part of Product Liability cover"

They're not going to be pleased if the original offer wasn't realistic.

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'"Continuing to run an essential central server shouldn't depend for finance on continuing sales of new product - that's effectively a Ponzi scheme."

This is a difficult one. It sounds reasonable until you think "how else can a company do this?"'

SImple. You sell it as a paid-for service. I pay my ISP, my domain registrar/email provider and Usenet service providers monthly, annually or whatever. The latter two just provide the service but the ISP also provides the network interface kit which, in fact, remains their property. What's to stop an operation such as Revolv operating as a service and charging as such? The H/W could either be part of the service deal or a separate sale but making quite clear that the service needs to be paid for for it to keep working.

'Storage obviously isn't unlimited: it's limited by the total data storage in the world, for example. Any reasonable person knows that it cannot be truly unlimited. What it means is "don't worry about caps". If you go silly then you can be told off from the company, and eventually disconnected. Is this a better or worse way of going about business than explicitly stating caps?'

It is worse. If you say unlimited then that's the offer. As we both agree it's a nonsense so don't offer it because if you do and then try to apply caps later either you're in breach of contract or, if you snuck a limiting clause into the contract, you're guilty of false advertising.

'The idea is mostly to reassure people who have no real idea what a gigabyte is'

s/reassure/lie to/

People have no idea what a gigabyte are going to be the ones who have least idea of what the realities are.

The principle is very simple. Sell what you can supply. Don't mislead people into thinking that you can supply something you can't.

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"it will refund customers"

So it hasn't yet? If it was the plan to do that then it would have been sensible to have made the offer when the shutdown was announced, not when it had the FTC on its case.

At least Revolv was bought by a company that has the resources to make refunds. What happens to a company that just goes bust because of cash-flow problems or because the owners have taken out all the funds as dividends and done a runner?

The FTC and consumer protection world-wide need to lay down some rules:

If a device is based on connectivity to a central hub it must fail-safe if the connectivity fails temporarily and there should be a software escrow arrangement whereby up-to-date copies of the hub and device software are available if the company goes out of business or just shuts down the hub.

Companies should not make infeasible offers. If an ISP or the like offers uncapped data then they should be able to sustain every customer using their full bandwidth all day every day. Continuing to run an essential central server shouldn't depend for finance on continuing sales of new product - that's effectively a Ponzi scheme. And unlimited storage is a complete non-starter.

Microsoft wins landmark Irish data slurp warrant case against the US

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Re: this ain't over yet

"Glad to see I'm not the only commentard from the occupied six counties."

It's as well to remember that if there hadn't been partition the consequence would undoubtedly have been a war of secession. I've often wondered whether that might have been the more stable long-term outcome but it would certainly have been bloody. I don't know enough about modern Irish history (as far as I'm concerned modern is anything later than, say, Early Iron Age) to work out whether this would have replaced the Irish civil war or whether it would have resulted in a 3-way war as it would have been in a similar time-frame.

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Re: US will probably alter the law when it modifies MLAT

"Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) process with the UK"

What part of "Ireland" did you not understand?

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Re: Us citizens data in ireland

"the Irish government was offering to help the FBI get a warrant through the Irish courts."

Were they? My impression was that they simply said that that's what the proper route should have been. It would have depended on there having been an adequate case to get a warrant. When a government offers to help get a case through the courts it's on very dangerous ground.

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Re: First round to Microsoft....

"How badly does the US Gov. want access to the data?"

Not badly enough to have gone through the proper legal route in the first place. That's the one where they prepare a case and present it to an Irish court to get an Irish warrant that can't be refused by an Irish business operating on Irish soil. Or could it have been that they never had enough of a case to present in the firs place?

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Re: this ain't over yet

"Not sure whether by Brits who want to invade again"

One of those downvotes was from someone who spent many years there during the IRA/UVF campaigns and has seen the consequences at close quarters. That's "seen" as in having helped dig up the occasional murder victim or help identify very badly burned remains (Google La Mon for details).

Some of us know very well what a land war is like in Ireland. It's not the land that gets hurt.

Chinese hacker jailed for shipping aerospace secrets home

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Re: Light Sentence

"I wonder ... how much misinformation they planted into the system which was then transferred to China?"

And how much of it was planted intentionally.

Your next storage will be invisible (for a while)

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"For example, if you are running the IT infrastructure in a university, you'll probably have access to a lot of manpower (in the form of students and researchers)… in this case it's probable that your TCO won't be affected by the cost of Sysadmins"

In that case you might be paying for more Sysadmins to defend it all from the students and researchers.

Mine's an old white one with ferric chloride stains that won't come out.

Ad viewability worsens

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Re: TVs

"Like how many people switch channels, or hit the mute button when the ads are showing."

I don't watch much live now. Everything goes through Myth TV & fast-forward just runs through the ads.

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