* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16426 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

City of Atlanta's IT gear thoroughly pwned by ransomware nasty

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"The recent ElReg article on the state of IT security in Michigan highlights what a challenge it is."

Especially when the overall conclusion of that assessment was on the lines of "could be worse".

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"They don't want to pay for the controls but will pay for the mess cleanup."

It's actually a matter of choice. They have a choice about paying for controls, they have no choice about paying to clean up the mess.

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"Payroll systems for city employees is not affected, he said."

Like I keep saying, the essential requirement for a good sysadmin is a strong sense of paranoia. There's nothing like your payroll system for encouraging that.

Your code is RUBBISH, says GitHub. Good thing we're here to save you

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Re: The code-sharing site


Maybe you didn't actually read the article's headline. It's the context for what follows.

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The code-sharing site

Given the context I read that as "The code-shaming site"

User asked why CTRL-ALT-DEL restarted PC instead of opening apps

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Re: Ah. The BSD old dsys....

"Back in those times, the people actually using computers at least had a clue."

Not necessarily but they'd probably got one by November.

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Re: Feeling Old...

"Kids these days will never understand the trauma of trying to get 600k of base memory."

And kids of your days never understood the trauma of 64k with a lump taken out of it for BIOS. Cue Four Yorkshiremen sketch from Dabbsy's latest.

Cambridge Analytica seeks data protection assistant

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Re: Sure you can

"it's going to be a very short-term position."

Sole duty: being the last one out to turn off the lights.

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"analyse data breaches and information security incidents"

Translation: Analyse the entire business.

Corking story: Idiotic smart wine bottle idea falls over, passes out

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"That's right, the corked company didn't even have the sense to use the code LASTORDERS."

Maybe one LASTORDER was all they had stock for.

Icon - closest available option.

BOFH: Give me a lever long enough and a fool, I mean a fulcrum and ....

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Re: bossplains is my favorite new term

"bossplaining is not the same as bofhsplaining"

Of course they're different. Only one of them involves cattle-prods, rolls of carpet and quicklime.

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Re: cellphone?

The BOFH has been around for a long time. Probably long enough to remember BT's System 4 which was a non-cellular mobile system. It overlapped with TACS. In BT terms TACS was 5th generation....

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Re: Too true

Bonus points if the sales person leaves in tears through the window.

BOFHed it for you.

Facebook's inflection point: Now everyone knows this greedy mass surveillance operation for what it is

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Re: Regulators to the Rescue (of Zuck)!

"His lobbyists will write the regulations, the cheaply whored-out congresscritters will pass them, and then all of the stuff people are squirming about today will suddenly be just fine because it's Officially The Law now."

Ah. The view from the US. The laws Congress pass apply to the whole world.

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Digital advertising was already in trouble – failing to offer brands a great advantage over traditional, "wasteful" advertising

That's because they don't appreciate digital advertising's greatest benefit: adblockers. Remember "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted and I don't know which half"? Adblockers should give advertisers a big hint.

UK Court of Appeal settles reseller's question: Is software a good?

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Re: Surely it is the spirit of the act...

No, it's the letter of the law that matters. You and I may have different ideas about what the spirit might be but what the Act actually says is beyond dispute - it's the text that emerges from the Westminster Gas Works and that's what the courts have to work with, even if they're not happy with it, as here. All the court can do is drop a big hint.

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"I other words"

I really have to get this key - err, the key between b & m sorted out.

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"The idea that this latter situation would fall under the regulations, while the former would not, appears illogical."

I other words, HMG being told to sort it out.

UK's data watchdog seizes suspected Scottish nuisance caller's kit

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Re: Can’t they just look?

"Google shows no phone number for checking level crossings that I can find."

There are more ways to get information than Google. A big sign beside the crossing would be one.

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"I bet the MD of the company is already putting plans in motion for another company to be setup."

I'm sure there are be criminal charges available in relation to endangering rail safety. They might keep him from setting up any more companies for a good while. I'd like to think the ICO will be liaising with British Transport Police on this one.

Just when you thought it was safe to go ahead with microservices... along comes serverless

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Re: Is it just me

"You get charged for the processing required for those 100 requests."

Give that servicing each of those requests now seems to have the overhead of spinning up the service that allegedly doesn't exist and closing it down afterwards it seems likely that the charge ought to be more.

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"It's serverless because you don't spin up a compute resource...Each function you call launches in its own container"

The second sounds extremely like spinning up a compute resource except in different words. Do you really think the assembled el Reg commentards can't see that?

Do you also think we don't know that with servers you don't need the time to spin up a compute resource/launch a function because the server was spun up at boot time and is already waiting to do the job?

Given that you seem to be new here maybe you really do think that.

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Re: Is it just me

Now there are new overpromoted seminars and courses about it!

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Re: Is it just me

"Throwing boxes at the problem - OpEx looks like a better deal than CapEx, at least on paper - and Finance loves that."

Finance knows how much servers cost. So lying through your teeth redefining "server" and "less" makes them thing they're getting a massive cut in costs.

Tiangong-1 re-entry window shrinks: Duck from March 30 to April 3

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It's narrowing in on April 1st.

That long-awaited Mark Zuckerberg response: Everything's fine! Mostly fixed! Facebook's great! All good in the hoodie!

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Re: "Don't worry Folks, everything is fine"

@Charles 9

If, as a result of all this FB goes titsup (and the word in the UK is that advertisers are now starting to get twitchy about it which could spell bad news), what are you going to do?

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Re: "Don't worry Folks, everything is fine"

" they were allowed to fail "

weren't, dammit, weren't!

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Re: You signed up for it.

"it's turtles all the way down"

It's Dunning-Kruger and just one level's enough.

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Re: "I'm serious about doing what it takes to protect our community."

"I think you got the order of importance slightly wrong there."

It's not the order that was wrong it was the elements. Me, family, cronies.

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Re: "Don't worry Folks, everything is fine"

"We had life before cars and electricity, too."

We had life before horse and cart. We had life before steam locomotion. We had life before gas lighting. All those things were indispensable in their time but we discovered alternatives. The end of history is a fallacy; every age has thought it had achieved the pinnacle of human achievement.

"And no, various family values preclude ignoring people for whom Facebook is the exclusive contact point."

How about telephones or are you post-telephone? How about letters or are you post-letters? Email? MySpace? If you can dispose of those to communicate only by FB, something you (plural) must have let happen by mutual consent because nobody actually forced it on you, then you can also dispose of FB.

You may not have any contingency plans in place but you'll struggle on somehow.

Don't think FB is too big to fail. There's no such thing. Banks weren't allowed to fail because they were too big, they were allowed to fail because they were too embedded in the workings of the economy. That took a few centuries to happen, not a few years.

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Re: Who'd a thunk it?

"Nobody saw that coming."

Clearly nobody who has an account did.

Go park yourself: Brit firm flashes self-parking car tech

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Re: Don't worry folks, the CAAS thing will be along soon

"I think the Pink Unicorns are out an about in force."

You wouldn't believe the mess they make when they start to moult.

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Re: Don't worry folks, the CAAS thing will be along soon


I don't suppose you have much of a problem with people asking if you can give them a lift.

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"The day the first automated car is used to crash through the barriers of Downing Street and has been instructed to do so by someone that's almost untraceable"

Follow the money (or booze). Ram-raiding your local offie will come first.

Screw luxury fridges, you can now run webOS on your Raspberry Pi

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"a fresh face on the smartphone market would be very welcome."

How soon we forget: https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/02/21/planet_gemini_pda_production_hands_on/ It has a phone and can run Linux.

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Re: Doesn't give an obvious reason

"Install it on a Raspberry Pi and turn your dumb TV into a smart TV?"

OSMC works fine for that.

Cambridge Analytica CEO suspended – and that's not even the worst news for them today

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"My twitter feed is replete with promoted messages that are very much in favour of the EU, mass migration and Clintonite / Blairite politics."

It may, of course, be those opposed to such things who have had them promoted in order to wind you up. I suspect Unwarranted triumphalism of having a similar purpose.

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Re: All is not how it seems !!!

"One way take take control would be to begin an official (police) investigation, thus blocking those pesky journos from digging up too much unwelcome revelations"

It would only block them if charges were made so it became sub judice.

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Re: Help

"Jacob is an unbelievably nice bloke"

You mean you don't believe it?

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Re: Media and Twittersphere outrage......

"So what changed this week?"

Publicity. It achieved critical mass.

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Re: Let's all blame the developer

"For several years we ( me and the SO) have taken part in a longitudinal social survey organised by a UK university. Once a year a reseacher pops round with a laptop and questionnaire."

Does a Heisenberg principle apply to this sort of thing? Does being surveyed regularly influence the way you form views? And how would a researcher test that?

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"Basically, volunteers get a list of people to call"

Either things work differently in the US or the best use of this would be to pretend to be the other side and call their supporters. From my PoV it would be "I was thinking of voting for you but as you've called a TPS-registered number I won't".

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Re: $185.09 to $169.15, (about a 9% fall)

"He knows people have very short attention spans"

Legislators with a campaign to keep them in the public eye work on have rather longer attention spans.

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"Mr Nix’s recent comments secretly recorded by Channel 4 and other allegations do not represent the values or operations of the firm"

I take it the values or operations not represented amount to "don't get caught".

FBI raids home of spy sat techie over leak of secret comms source code on Facebook

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Re: Idiot.

"The fact he was doing stuff that was so easy to trace is mind boggling."

We keep seeing this. Those who are doing intelligence acquisition seem to be not very good at maintaining their own security at both an individual and corporate level. We should remember this when evaluating their notions of how to go about their business, especially their calls for back doors.

Addicts of Facebook and pals are easy prey for manipulative scumbags – thanks to tech giants' 'extraordinary reach'

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Re: Censorship coming to a website near you?

The cherished concept of 'free speech" personal privacy is being eroded by various lawmakers 'champions' of free speech

Fixed that from a European point of view.

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"You could substitute 'NHS' for 'Facebook' in the article without risk of being error"

Could you elaborate on this rather brief statement?

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Re: Yeah right...

"They don't mean that much to most of us."

They do if we have to replace an entire aspect of EU activity, say medicine approvals out of our own resources. Just because someone isn't directly involved in something EU funded it doesn't mean that they aren't the beneficiary of that activity.

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Re: Yeah right...


The way it works out, some things, e.g. aviation licensing are done on an EU wide basis so from the EU's point of view, when the UK drops out of that their contribution has to be picked up by the rest of the EU - it won't really cost less to do if the UK isn't involved. So it costs them money. But the UK then has to take on the responsibility for itself and bear all the costs of that itself. It's one of the things that's caused some consternation (exaggerated along the lines of come Brexit all planes will be grounded in the UK) in that it's going to cost the UK tax payer more than it does at present.

Then there are situations such as the ESA which isn't strictly an EU organisation but when it was put together membership of the EU seems to have been assumed - what happens there? If the UK isn't a member they'll miss our financial contribution but if we're not part of it what happens to our space industry if it doesn't participate in ESA projects? Can it flourish to the same extent?

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Re: Some Data Protection and other ideas

"a) opt-in only for the data collection; and

b) individuals must be able to view and edit their own info, in a meaningful form, as they see fit [including erasing all of it]"

That's just what GDPR says - but oops! that's gummint regulation.

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