* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16426 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

Footie fans calling for a red card over West Ham United CC email blunder

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One of the preparations for GDPR should have been to have email systems default to BCC: and/or staff training about this.

Windows 95 roars once more in the Microsoft round-up

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Re: Windows 95?

"This was a bitter disappointment of an operating system that took us nowhere"

You have to look at context. The underpinnings were still MSDOS. I'd been using W3 with HP New Era on top of it and that was a distinct improvement, introducing a good few bits of what we now take for granted in GUI which weren't there before. A lot of that seems to have been incorporated into W95 but the scatter of files which held it together were rolled into the Registry. It also introduced some elements of HP VUE which became CDE but its single cascading menu was, in my view, a step in advance of that.

Its weakness, however, was that it didn't have anything Unix-like under it, nor even VMS-like along the lines of NT. This is maybe not too surprising given the minimal H/W requirement.

I think it's fair to say that the Registry is a confused and confusing structure. OTOH the Open Desktop stuff underlying the various Unix-like desktops follows on from the New-Era style of multiple files even more widely scattered through the file system.

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Re: Win95 license?

"What I don't get is how he can include the entire Windows 95 with the app."

I get the impression he just hopes they don't care.

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Re: 200Mhz

"As well as the old faithful Cyrix 6x86 series."

Cyrix Instead.

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Re: Windows 95?

"So it's an upgrade from Windows 10 then."

It's certainly a lesson in what a GUI should look like.

AI image recognition systems can be tricked by copying and pasting random objects

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"Then you get surprised that it can't jam every object in the universe into tight categories based on that training as well as a human who's been doing that for 30+ years constantly with a much higher connection of brain and intelligence and vision than anything the biggest supercomputer can even approach."

30+ years? The human brain develops that ability very quickly. It will also very quickly extrapolate from a picture to a real elephant or vice versa depending on which it's shown first. However it has very many generations of human and pre-human evolution shaping the recognition neuro-system responsible. And yet autonomous vehicle supporters don't see this as a problem.

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Re: Not just AI

"The invisible gorilla experiment shows that humans are also easily confused and don't always identify objects in a field of view."

The confusion is between "field of view" and "area of focus".

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"If I was to see an elephant floating around my lounge room, I'd start disbelieving my eyes to."

It's not looking at a room. It's looking at a picture of a room and you'd have no problem recognising an elephant in that context.

C'est n'est pas une pipe.

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Re: The elephant in the room!

"from my second driving instructor"

Curious minds want to know what happened to the first.

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Re: Pretty obvious really

"i.e. an algorithm that can identify four legs meeting a seat at right-angles, etc."

Before that you need algorithms that can identify legs and seats. You also need to take account for the fact that they don't usually meet the seat at right angles. A Windsor chair has splayed legs Sabre legs don't meet at right angles either. And as for cabriole legs....

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Re: Pretty obvious really

"Part of the problem is - what is a chair?"

There's one of AI's problems. It's never sat in a chair.

Black hats are baddie hackers, white hats are goodies, grey hats will sell IP to kids in hoodies

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It's not all bad

"Globally, 4.6 per cent of respondents believed a colleague fell into the grey category, which rose in the UK to an alarming 7.9 per cent."

I'm sure most of us can think of at least one colleague or former colleague who could have done serious damage to a competitor had they tried to cooperate with them.

None too chuffed with your A levels? Hey, why not bludgeon the exam boards with GDPR?

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It comes about 56 years too late as far as I'm concerned.

Linux 4.19 lets you declare your trust in AMD, IBM and Intel

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Re: Request to disable the flag?

I'd have thought the obvious solution would be a boot-time argument unless the entropy collection happens before the arguments are read.

UK getting ready to go it alone on Galileo

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"But isn't it more expensive to launch the further you are away from the equator and hence why Ariane launches from French Guiana rather than anywhere in Europe?"

That depends on the orbit: it's true for equatorial orbits such as geostationary satellites. Navigation satellites are in polar orbit so one place is as good as another with a preference for there being uninhabited areas downrange where bits of rocket fall. The proposed spaceport in NW Scotland is fine for that as there's a lot of sea downrange.

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The big mistake here is having it as an unmanned system. I'd like to nominate the crew. We wouldn't, of course, have a means of crew return and the launch vehicle might have "B Ark" written on the side.

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Re: The morons "in charge"...

"And the 9th biggest economy on the planet (or the 5th, depending on which numbers you use)"

Not for much longer once Moggonomics takes full control.

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Re: Gaileo was willy waving

"no European military could conduct a major military operation without US support"

That's a way of saying without US approval and GPS is a part of that. It reduces the Europe to being simply vassals of US foreign policy. Now do you see why they wanted Galileo?

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"And it's exactly the access to the encrypted bits that Britain is going to lose"

And just who was it insisted not-EU countries shouldn't have that access?

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Re: £92m on a feasibility study

Steady on there, chaps. Don't go undercutting each other.

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Re: UK has the resourcesy

"Remember all the products that were NTSC only because it just wasn’t feasible to make a PAL offering based on market size?"

Isn't the European market actually bigger than Never Twice Same Colour land? More likely marketing execs in the US don't even realise there are other countries out there let alone know what their standards are.

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Re: Is their hardware history better or worse than their software history?

"Oddly, if you look at our history BEFORE we joined the EEC, it was a lot better."

You're looking at a time just after WWII - and really seeing a continuation of the inventiveness that engendered (radar etc.). After that the arts & PPE graduates took over and they didn't like these little men in brown coats with pens and screwdrivers in their top pockets.

Jupiter suffered growing pains before becoming our system's big daddy

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"It’s also so big that if it gained any more mass it could actually shrink; all the gas would violently compress into a small ball and it would turn into a star."

So stop sending up spacecraft to crash into it.

Experimental 'insult bot' gets out of hand during unsupervised weekend

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Re: Bank Holidays...

Call them "drought days" and you'll guarantee rain.

But don't overdo it and appoint a minister for droughts. That way you get floods.

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Re: an anarchic term

"ITYM archaic"

Given the typical effect on transport the original fits pretty well.

Lawyers sued for impersonating rival firm online to steal clients

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Are they going to act in their own defence? You know what they say about that.

Android data slurping measured and monitored

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Re: Blessed are the poor

"It's not how much the data is actually worth, it's how much the advertisers think it's worth. And you're talking about marketing people here."

Got it in one.

As I keep saying here, the only thing the advertising industry sells is advertising. "Targeting" data is part of that product and they keep finding mugs to buy it.

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Re: 'The nature of some data may also surprise. App developers receive your age and gender'

Ditto for using "utilise" where "use" will do just fine.

And throw in "envision" instead of "envisage".

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Re: 'The nature of some data may also surprise. App developers receive your age and gender'

"the anti-Microsoft brigade trumpetted about the virtues of Android being open source"

The problem with Android isn't the open source core, it's the large closed source lump that Google runs on top of it before allowing Play store apps to be used. Yes, we know about that one. It's been mentioned here many times. It's why the OP gave those recommendations and why we don't trust Google. Also partly the reason why my. mobile is an ancient Symbian Nokia (the other reason is it does all I need so I don't see any reason to spend on a replacement).

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Re: RE: tiggity

"A list of stuff you're supposed to get through at a meeting before heading to the pub"

You're holding your meetings in the wrong venue.

OMG! Battle looms over WTF! trademarks

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"corporate marketing"

It might be worse than that. The report on the Beeb suggests it could be the work of an activist investor who now has a seat on the board. Maybe the board decided the best way to deal with him was let him have his head and then when everyone was pointing and laughing at the result, give them a chance to fire him without comeback. (Ringing the BOFH for carpet & quicklime would finish the job nicely.)

Surprise! VAT, customs likely to get a bit trickier in a Brexit no-deal world

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Re: I Think "Brexit" will sign the death warrant for the Pound

"In around 10 - 20 or so years the UK will be wanting to rejoin, lots of hard exit people died off and young wanting to be in EU people out numbering the ones left."

My guess is that it'll be almost impossible to find anyone claiming admitting to vote Brexit in a far less time period than that. And I'm sure joining the Euro will be part of the price for that. I'm with Codejunky and the rest on the Euro not being a good thing but it's what they'll have brought on us.

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Re: See the bigger picture people

"You forgot the Troll icon. Or the taking the piss one."

I think he just assumed the sarcasm would be obvious. As the A/C shows, you can't rely on that.

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"We will leave the EU next year and we will immediately go back to Britain in the 1950s

You missed a massive rise in death of children around birth and in the first year of their life."


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Re: Can anyone

"- We can deport undesirables (hate speech preachers, for example) without the ECJ telling us that we have to keep them because deportation would spoil their family life."

And fourthly we can't deport any of those who are home grown. (A pity, however, that prosecutions for treason have become unpopular.)

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Re: Can anyone

"I'm an optimist so I offered a few possibilities"

The first part of your post was based on "A lot depends on whether you think the EU and Eurozone will survive the next few years. I suspect the Eurozone will go first," which is essentially pessimistic in nature. This is your Project Fear.

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Re: Can anyone

"EU recycling targets can be scrapped so the many colours of bins to send waste to China who is now giving up on sorting and recycling it (costs too much) making our lives more productive."

What do you think happens if we scrap recycling targets? We dump more stuff in landfill, that's what happens. See squatting on our own shit heaps.

China's stopping taking stuff is certainly a problem that needs to besolved but you're conflating two separate issues.

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Re: Can anyone

"EU recycling targets can be scrapped so the many colours of bins to send waste to China who is now giving up on sorting and recycling it (costs too much) making our lives more productive."

Great idea. We can all squat on our own shit heaps.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Can anyone

"It's always hard to come up with concrete predictions for the future"

And yet the whole Brexit argument is based on alleged predictions which, on your own admission, must be non-concrete.

There a few real gems in your list:

"We don't have to send billions a year to be spent by someone else on what they think is good for us."

This is what governments do. e.g. we, as UK taxpayers, send billions a year to the NHS to be spent by someone else, NHS trusts, on what they think good for us.

"We can avoid bureaucratic red tape that is deliberately written in an overcomplex way so as to avoid offending 28 countries that all have a diferent take on things."

Did you read the article at all. It deals with the new bureaucratic red tape that has to be introduced as replacement for the existing lack of bureaucratic red tape involved in transactions with what is currently our home market.

And I'll leave you to reflect on the leverage we'll be able to exert in setting up these trade deals that will benefit us with some selfless but unidentified countries that won't be wanting trade deals to benefit themselves.

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Re: This Train Wreck is getting interesting

"Why would we put tarrifs on things we want to buy?"

I think you're missing the OP's point; you're certainly missing the article's. Just handling the bureaucracy on imports, tarrifs or no, is going to impose direct costs. The time taken to get stuff through the procedures is going to impose delays and very likely lead to shortages. With shortages you get price rises.

HP Inc strips off, rolls around as Windows 10 money pours down

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Re: How many?

"I only own 3 - who's got my other 9?"

The van driver left them in your bin & they were taken away by the binmen before you knew they were there. https://www.lincolnshirelive.co.uk/news/lincoln-news/fury-internet-shopping-delivery-left-1880212

Chap asks Facebook for data on his web activity, Facebook says no, now watchdog's on the case

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Re: 'It's not clear whether he also has a FB account or whether he's a non-account'

"Why does it matter whether he's a member or not? It's personal data that they have collected about him.

From a technical aspect, if he's a member it should make it easier for them to extract and collate the relevant data."

I'm just thinking it terms of how this can play out. If he doesn't have an account FB can present a defence along the lines of "we don't know who he is". If he has an account this defence is less likely to succeed and if the case then exposes the amount of data collected off-platform it makes it less easy for them to defend against a subsequent claim by a non-account holder.

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Re: 'It's not clear whether he also has a FB account or whether he's a non-account'

Yes. All it says is off Facebook.

Let's back up two paragraphs before what we both wrote about: "The crux of the issue is the data the firm slurps up via its Facebook Pixel, the widely used tracking code on multiple websites"

Note that these multiple websites extend far beyond those Facebook runs.

Now look at the next paragraph; it makes the point that the tools Facebook provides are "to access the data collected on the platform [i.e. Facebook's own platform] – for instance, ad preferences" and not those collected off it, i.e. those collected by the means described in the preceding paragraph.

And that's what "off Facebook" means. It gives no indication as to whether he has an account with them or not because he's not asking about data collected on the platform.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

The report just says he's asking for browsing activity off Facebook. It's not clear whether he also has a FB account or whether he's a non-account holding innocent bystander.

Hackers clock personal deets on 'two million' T-Mobile US subscribers

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"EE, which absorbed T-Mo's UK operations, confirmed to El Reg that no Brits were affected."

How do they know? Have they gone through all 2 million and checked that they don't have UK nationality or that none of them have UK residency as well have having a US subscription?

Intel rips up microcode security fix license that banned benchmarking

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Re: Cock-up or conspiracy?

"this looks more like a mistake in releasing the code with the license that was used with customers who were doing pre-release, under NDA, testing"

You could be right but if the testing was done under NDA why would it be needed?

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Re: Hmmm

Did somebody say "Streisand Effect"?

Not in that lawyer's law school. Maybe it's something that should be on the curriculum.

Tax the tech giants and ISPs until the bits squeak – Corbyn

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Re: tax dodgers

"Probably the best way to avoid corporate tax avoidance is to reduce corporation tax to a very low level and raise income taxes, dividend taxes and maybe property/and taxes."

Or the Irish method. Attract large multinational corporations to head-quarter in your country so that you can set corporation taxes low but still, due to the now enormous size of your tax base, bring in a tax-take entirely disproportionate to the size of your country's real economy. You have the additional advantage that that your local businesses also benefit from the low corporation tax. It has the disadvantage that you become very unpopular with your neighbours by taking what they regard as their taxation but can do nothing about as they've agreed international tax treaties that permit it.

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Re: How about the Leveson Enquiry anyone ...

"Implementing Leveson (including Leveson 2) in full is already Labour policy."

There are lots of things which are in the policy of opposition parties but cease to be as soon as that party gets into power. This applies to all parties. Most party supporters realise it. Unfortunately LibDem supporters seem to be an exception here so we've lost the ameliorating influence that that party brought to the 2010-2015 coalition.

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