* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16426 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

The 'new' Microsoft? I still wouldn't touch them with a barge pole

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Re: Win10 = SmartTV = Android....

"I don't want to pay for Win10"

You'll probably pay more without it because the W10 licence has been offset by all the crapware the maker's been paid to put on it. Just check the Secure Boot hasn't been tied down, buy it and then blow away the junk and bask in the righteousness of it.

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Re: You're Wrong

"That's because in a world where startups move fast and pivot hard. Large corporations need that same agility."

Quite the opposite. Customers need stability. They expect large corporations to provide that because the startups can't or won't. It makes no sense to try to ape competitors who are still going to be better. It makes good sense to provide something the competitors don't.

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Re: Just a question:

IIRC Drag and drop was one of the bits that W95 incorporated from HP's New Wave. New Wave was a layer that HP built on top of 3.x. If you looked at W95's copyrights HP were in there as were the Regents of UCB for the BSD networking stack.

All the WIMP elements had been round for a long time. I grant you that they way they were assembled in W95 hit a sweet spot (except for the lack of multiple workspaces) but as we all know they subsequently put a lot of effort into junking that.

The Ribbon? As far as most people seem to be concerned, they're welcome to all the blame for that.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Hello, my name is Gavin

"I guess that Microsoft's lawyers are a bit scary, even in Mumbai."

A requirement of trademarks is that you should defend them. If you fail to do that you lose them.

The odd thing is that if you use the Microsoft mail service under one of its ever-changing brand names the spam with the lowest probability of being filtered out is that purporting to come from themselves and yet it's the spam they should have the greatest success with - they should be able to find out whether they sent it. If they were ever taking misuse of their trademarks to court this lackadaisical approach to passing-off attempts which they could control would provide a stack of evidence against them

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Agreed - I don't trust them, hate their stuuf and don't use any of it

"Then along came Novell Netware which just ran and ran, didn't need rebooting every day and didn't crash"

My mercifully brief experience of Netware was the converse. IIRC the OS and <all> the services ran as a single process. An attempt to shut down a database brought the whole thing down in a heap. Novell was the server OS for MS clients until MS developed theirs.

Neither, of course, had anything like the reliability of Unix servers. That's the time of the apocryphal tale of a Unix server which suddenly disappeared from the LAN. On investigation it was found to have been turned off. Further investigation brought the response "Nobody ever came to reboot it so we assumed it wasn't being used.".

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Complete Trust

"Being partly a Marxist"

Is this why you are unable to simply type "Microsoft" or simply "MS" and "Apple" and have, instead, to use codes which were intended for specific purposes?

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Re: What!!!

"SQL server"

Forced to use it on contract. Give me Informix any day.

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Re: The lock in Question

"I guess the money is big enough now for all these companies that they don't give a shit about those of us on the "outside" who got them to where they are today."

It also means that the money is big enough for any upstart who decides to produce a decent product and support it.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: The lock in Question

"That's NOT professional support. That's license admin."

Why should license admin not be considered a support task?

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Re: The lock in Question

"Inability to speak to a real person who actually understands the product rather than someone from south India called Joe who can't really speak English even though they are reading from a script."

Unfortunately this criterion makes it increasingly hard to find a vendor of anything.

London NHS trust fined £180,000 after second bcc fail on HIV email list

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"not some Outlook bodge."

But but...isn't Outlook email?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"While some remedial measures were put in place following this mistake, there was no specific training implemented,"

If there wasn't even specific training it's difficult to see what the remedial measures were. Or maybe they replaced the temp who sent the first one by the temp who sent the second.

There's no two ways about it, personal liability is needed.

Experian Audience Engine knows almost as much about you as Google

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"I doubt you'd see a similar service in the UK except on an opt-in basis"

In that case, given the way the likes of Experian rule the roost, you'd have to stick to cash anyway? Bank account? Cards? Hire purchase? Mortgage? No chance.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Adjusted wording...

"then all the Google ads from then on send you lawnmower prices for about six months"

What ads?

Don't split Openreach, says BT, and we'll splash BEELLIONS on broadband and 4G

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Re: I would give them "regulatory certainty"

"they'll have no chance of surviving the competition that I will unleash on them."

You mean the businesses what had years free from BT's competition to cherry-pick where they wanted to roll out fibre are suddenly going to want to grab what they studiously ignored in the past?

Admittedly they do seem to have finally realised they don't have any assets within miles of here & have finally stopped sending me letter-box litter advertising their "service".

Facebook image-tagging to be tested in Californian court

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'I reckon that's legalese for "utter bullshit".'

Or "Do you really expect me to believe that?".

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Re: How does this work?

"Let's argue about something that matters...."

Are you saying Facebook & the like getting a kick where it hurts doesn't?

Database man flown to Hong Kong to install forgotten patch spends week in pub

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Re: Not quite these distances, but still a PITA

"Morgan Computer"

Fond memories. And before that, Morgan Camera. Lots of Exakta bits in the side window.

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Re: Days before laser pointers

"Dunno that means you now have a blinded pilot flying a 747 at the same height as your apartment."

Probably not a consideration for the hard of thinking.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

" Paying someone to do _that_ job is part of the expenses you should be demanding."

And finding such a trusted person at a day's notice is something you think you could achieve?

In real life that only works if grandparents live close at hand. (Grandfather here.)

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Not quite these distances, but still a PITA

"Fine, I drove home."

Right away? From a brewery?

You can always rely on the Ancient Ones to cock things up

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Re: Simples.

"a lot of cyanide was being flushed down the drain."

We had a Belfast sink* (we were in Belfast) in the lab that persistently leaked. I had a few goes at trying to tighten up the fittings over the years. Eventually I realized that the hydrofluoric acid that had been tipped down it had eaten its way through the glaze.

*Note for colonials: made out of white glazed earthenware.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Ah yes....

"It took four burly wharfies to get her back up again"

I'm reminded of the day, years before the VAX had even been though of, when we took delivery of a large wooden crate containing a Phillips scintillation counter - big piece of kit about half as wide again as your normal rack. Although the electronics were packed in separate boxes it wasn't empty - it was filled with the paternoster mechanism for changing samples and the housing and screening for the PMs.

The transport firm had neglected to send in in a van that included a tail lift. The driver's idea was that we simply drop it off the back. Eventually someone found a long scaffolding plank. We let it down on its side, slid it down the plank & then stood it upright. I don't think anyone had checked in advance whether it would fit down the narrow passage into the lab; we had to get it out of its crate before we could move it further. Once he'd seen the innards the driver went very quiet.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Oh so true (the water feature)

"It's cos of Entropy, apparently."

That paper's not an adequate explanation. They jiggled the string. As we all know cables can knot themselves without any external source of motion.

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Re: There will be blood...

"I would occasionally come across PCs that just wouldn't play nice whilst I was trying to upgrade hardware."

Maybe you didn't have a shelf with a big hammer just above the bench.

Sayonara, Brits! The Irish tech sector could benefit from Brexit

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Re: Disruption but not as we know it?

'I'd expect UK border controls at the RoI / NI border to rise significantly to offset the phobia that such an access point could become a gateway to the UK for the "wrong sort of people".'

This has never been achieved in the past.

If by the Islander handle you mean the island of Ireland you'll probably be aware of the fact that there are properties which actually straddle the border. It's not feasible to put border controls within farms or houses.

Ransomware grifters offer to donate proceeds of crime to charity

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"tips to defend against ransomware more generally "

"Tips" in the plural. Surely there's only one: if you weren't expecting it or don't recognise the source, don't open it.

Official: Microsoft's 'Get Windows 10' nagware to vanish from PCs in July

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Re: Linux is good as

"Linux is fugly"

Citation needed. Given that there are several alternative desktops this seems to be a rather remarkable generalisation.

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Re: Removed How?

"Still, curious to see what M$'s definition of "eventually" turns out to be.."

I wondered that too. About 5 years?

'I thought my daughter clicked on ransomware – it was the damn Windows 10 installer'

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: If they want to get more Win10

"Offer it free to XP users"

Quite a few of the XP users will have no option but to continue using it as it controls equipment that would cost a fortune to replace and for which the custom software is limited to XP.

Windows 10 free upgrade offer ends on July 29th

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: I don't mind Windows 10, but what's next?

"It seems the telemetry can be disabled"

And if MS wish, re-enabled on the next update.

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Re: @jaywin - Fairly good outcome my ass

"Tell me again how this was a fairly good outcome, for something that was FREE? "

And not just free but actively forced on users.

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Re: "The program's been a success"

"If only 45% of the total numbers were eligible, and they've got almost half of them to upgrade, that'd be a fairly good outcome for any marketing department."

Given their strong-arm tactics, maybe not.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: I have to run Windows 7

"Linus has such immense respect for computer professionals."

As far as I can see Linus' respect for others depends on their ability to earn it. Maybe you're a little more indiscriminating towards Microsoft's marketing department?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: The Last of Us


You're displaying a fairly common human trait: thinking that your experience is universal. Those of us who have been zapping Windows in favour of Linux for friends, relatives or clients have a different experience. Clearly this isn't one that you're going to share; from what you say it seems likely it would be outside your comfort zone although you'd probably be surprised to find it wouldn't be outside your capabilities.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: No more nagware?

"Because someone wrote MS actually reads these forums."

But do they recognise jokes when they see them?

Wasps force two passenger jets into emergency landings

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"Wonderful image over breakfast"

The wasp larvae certainly think so.

Suck on this: White hats replace Locky malware payload with dummy

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Re: Technically what they've done is a crime in many jurisdictions

Maybe the owners of the server will make a complaint to the local police.

Stop resetting your passwords, says UK govt's spy network

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"if they were, the banks wouldn't hand them out like candy"

And about as effective in the case of the one I was given.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: @zanshin

"I ran through work/rest/play as the 2nd half over most of 1 year, closed out the year with mars...."

Deep and fried for the start of the next year?

Microsoft: Why we tore handy Store block out of Windows 10 Pro PCs

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Re: Out with the old

'Unless you're going to fall in line, buy a lot of "apps", and be the consumer Microsoft wants for its new business model, then they don't really need to be subtle about getting rid of you.'

That depends on how many people want to buy them. On that basis they could end up getting rid of more & more possible customers.

Review legacy code: Waking dragons is risk worth taking, says Trainline ops head

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Automates searching your code-base for dragons.

Siemens Healthcare struck by rebranding madness

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Re: Heal...

Specsaveers. Extra syllables are available.

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Re: Sounds like

"But the people who apply veneer... they must be veneerereers."

That's a veneereal job.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Sorry, but the only acceptable use of company name changes is really when you merge two companies (Alcatel-Lucent?) and even then, only to eventually decide to retire one of the names."

Or when the old name has become toxic.

Woman charged with blowing AU$4.6m overdraft on 'a lot of handbags'

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She'll have to go to work for a bank. It's the only way she could afford to pay it off.

US telly stations fling malware-tipped web ads at unsuspecting surfers

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None of the usual apologist seem to have shown up here. I wonder why.

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Re: Round robin blame

"Quickest solution?

So take it to the end of the chain, and make each website owner legally liable for all damages caused by malware served by visiting their site."

I agree that that ought to be the case. But it's not the quickest solution. The quickest solution is ad-blockers.

BT to splash £550m integrating EE. Firm shrugs: Cheap!

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: @Tony S

"you may find that the pension fund is lacking money that was given to the shareholders while BT had a pensions holiday."

The pensions holiday was forced on it by HM Treasury. Can't have companies evading tax by paying too much into pension schemes.

Ultimately, of course, it's HM Treasury on the hook because of the pensions guarantee. Other pension schemes that are in deficit because of enforced contributions holidays aren't so fortunate.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Pension scheme

"The split of responsibility for the pension deficit would no doubt have caused some very considerable complications were BT forced to split off OR (as, arguably, most BT pensioners would have worked in areas which functionally fit with OR)."

If OR were to be floated off as O2 was with the same arrangements it would still be the BT pension scheme on the hook for those pensions in payment. I'm not sure about deferred pensions.

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