* Posts by Doctor Syntax

16426 posts • joined 16 Jun 2014

Intel: Our next chips won't have data leak flaws we told you totally not to worry about

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Re: So

"go down to your local retailer in 6 months or so and buy them"

...as part of a whole new computer.

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Re: Actually...

I'm surprised there aren't more publicly known errors in it.


Poop to save planet as boffins devise bullsh*t way of extracting gas

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Re: Crap News?

"Is any part of this story actually new or novel?"

Using the CO2 which is also included in the biog as by addition of hydrogen (produced using some energy source), a catalyst and some more energy to get methane that can be burned to produce energy and CO2.

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"Not quite - it's not a closed system, so it's not perpetual motion. The sun adds energy to the system, so it's not impossible."

The sun adds the initial energy. But on this scheme, having burnt the methane (including the methane produced as such by the digester) they have CO2. And as this is essentially a system for using CO2 and hydrogen (from ???) and more energy (from ???) the only limit to repeating this indefinitely is ??? As I said, the Underpant Gnomes version of perpetual motion, powered by ???

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Taking a look at what they're doing, I see that the "anaerobic" digester produces carbon dioxide as well as methane. So, using energy from ??? they convert it to methane which can then be burnt to produce energy (and, incidentally, get the carbon dioxide back). It's the Underpant Gnomes' version of the perpetual motion machine.

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Re: Crap Digesters

"Most of the Methane generated by our Bovine friends actually comes out of their front ends and not the rear."

This digesters like this aren't dealing with the bovine gaseous products. They deal with the solids. Well, semi-solids.

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I thought those digesters produced methane directly? What's this one producing? Ethylene?

Google to 'forget me' man: Have you forgotten what you said earlier?

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"it appears to be suggested that it only impacts on a search where the search term is the claimant's name. That’s not quite accurate... It results in the delisting wherever the search terms include the claimant's name.”

This raises all sorts of issues.

First of all there are numerous people sharing the same name. The effect would be to delist results for anyone who happened to share the name. What rights would such a person have if they wanted their name to feature in the result?

It also raises the question of what happens if the search includes words which go to make up the name. For instance, if the name was John Smith and I happen to search for a John Brown who was a smith does it mean that all the results I was looking for are to be delisted?

And what happens if I search for something completely unrelated but someone whose name coincides with the named person appears in the results? Would the result including that name be delisted even if it referred to the person involved? How would Google even be expected to know whether it was the same person or not?

Transport for NSW scrambles to patch servers missing fixes released in 2007

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Surely IBM has multiple layers of management.

And surely all those managers are their because of their technical competence - aren't they?

So surely those managers could lend a hand to do essential work.

After all, no business would be so foolish as to cut the staff who know how to do the work the company depends on and leave it overstaffed by those who don't. Would it?

It's Pi day: Care to stuff a brand new Raspberry one in your wallet?

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Re: All Pi's need USB3!

"I'm using one Pi in a rather unorthodox location and have 17 USB devices connected externally (including the hubs). No-one should have to go through what I did to get that working."

Hove you considered that you might need more than one computer (that's more than one at the same time) to do all that properly?

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Re: Pi vs Mac Mini

"You're comparing apples to oranges."

No, he's comparing Apples to Raspberries.

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@James Hughes 1

Can I just float this idea & see what the rest of the commentards make of it.

The existing Pi layout sprouts connectors in all sorts of directions which is fine for a bench-top gadget.

Trying to incorporate this in some sort of integrated device, say the PiTop or the NextCloud box the arrangement is really sub-optimal. In the PiTop, for instance, the need to get an internal connection for the keyboard plugged into the Pi means that the board is set far back into the case making the connectors awkward to access from the outside and the keyboard lead blocks the headphone socket.

Can I suggest an alternative layout for system builders?

HDMI, headphones, network and at least two USB sockets all line up on one edge which could then be made accessible to the outside of the box.

At least one USB would be on another edge for internal user - keyboard and/or storage.

The power connector would also be internal on the assumption that such a device would have its own internal powere (e.g. Pi batteries) or some sort of internal power distribution so that storage doesn't have to draw from the board.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: I hope the Bluetooth works better on this one

I wanted remote keyboards to go with Kodi (better than faffing with on-screen keyboards) and ended up buying a couple of compacts which paired with their own USB devices rather than BT. At first it seemed a bit pointless to tie up a USB connector. Having read these comments it seems they were were the better option than pure bluetooth.

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Re: Dates

" Four and twenty blackbirds"

To be fair, "twenty four blackbirds" would ruin the scansion.

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Re: Rats...

"...and I bought the previous model less than a month ago."

Less than a month ago? I bought one less than a fortnight ago. Another Kodi box.

Trump’s immigration policies costing US tech jobs says LogMeIn CEO

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"He now believes that won’t be possible, that the company will instead need to establish bigger offices offshore and that the net outcome will be fewer employees in the USA....He added his hope that the cost of running extra offshore offices is offset by lower labour costs, so that shareholders don’t see extra cost."

Translation: Great. We now have the perfect excuse for off-shoring as much as possible to the cheapest possible country and blame the govt. for any public backlash.

Openreach hiring thousands more engineers

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Re: Engineers...?

"Be great of the Register could use the correct terminology."

And equally great of the PR numpties who write press releases.

MailChimp 'working' to stop hackers flinging malware-laced spam from accounts

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“It is unclear how spammers managed to gain access to MailChimp's systems"

Really? I thought it was perfectly clear. I regard MailChimp and those like them as spammers.

Come May I'll be making it clear to anyone I do business and who shows signs of thinking otherwise with that they do not have my permission to send any of my personal information, namely by email address, to MailChimp or any of the rest of the spamming industry.

NHS Digital heads accused of being 'suppliers', not 'custodians' of UK patient data

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Gordon said the body was only providing information “of an administrative kind” to those who were seeking to pursue criminal offences. He said the body saw the MoU with home office as “lawful and proportionate”.

I wonder if Mr Gordon will be taking legal advice before May because I'd have thought that this:


(1)Liability of directors etc

Subsection (2) applies where—

(a) an offence under this Act has been committed by a body corporate, and

(b) it is proved to have been committed with the consent or connivance of or to be attributable to neglect on the part of—

(i) a director, manager, secretary or similar officer of the body corporate, or

(ii) a person who was purporting to act in such a capacity.

(2)The director, manager, secretary, officer or person, as well as the body corporate, is guilty of the offence and liable to be proceeded against and punished accordingly.

puts him right in the firing line.

Patch LOSE-day: Microsoft secures servers of the world. By disconnecting them

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Re: I just don't get it.

"Calm down and see what happens first. Perhaps even consider some testing too."

Unless someone takes up your second piece of advice everyone will sit calmly for a few days, then, because there've been no reports of problems, everyone applies the patches on Friday - just in time for a week-end's panic.

Ex-Equifax exec charged with insider trading after bagging 1 MEEELLION dollars in stock sale

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"they were cleared of insider dealing by a panel of three directors from other firms."

Assuming they have their own days in court I can't see a judge and jury being impressed by that.

Fermi famously asked: 'Where is everybody?' Probably dead, says renewed Drake equation

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Re: We're gonna need a bigger board

Upvoted for socks teleported out of washing. But what do they want with all those socks?

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Re: Irrelevant

"Yes there are still many high power broadcasts but fewer and fewer as time passes."

And not as high power as it says on the tin. Nominally a VHF radio transmitter might be transmitting a total of a MW across its channels. In fact, that's ERP; as they don't want to waste energy radiating into space the only directions from which the tower looks like a MW job are those just above the aerial's horizon.

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Re: Who said they are using EM in the first place?

"There will be a point where we simply cannot jam the required information into a spectrum band any more."

And the closer you get to that the more it looks like noise.

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Re: Not useful

"We know there can't be no intelligent life."

The lower bound, however, is extremely low in astronomical terms. It's one planet. Here.

More power to UK, say 'leccy vehicle makers. Seriously, they need it

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Re: A pragmatic view?

"Too many electric charging points are being installed in poor locations, shopping centres open 9 - 8 is useless. I want to plug in on arrival at my hotel......why are councils not providing road side charging? Lack of demand!"

So everyone should run round and provide charging points suitable for your convenience at their expense? Or do I misread you?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Batteries are a stupid solution for EV's anyway...

"Longer term, increasingly autonomous vehicles are going to lead to a massive reduction in vehicle ownership anyway"

The chief characteristics of autonomous vehicles for hire on demand (which is what I think you have in mind) have been achieved for years in taxis. They supply a limited market, great for getting to the airport, not great for getting everyone to work in the morning and back at night. Great for walking or tube/bus replacement within cities, not great for going on long trips.

It's difficult to see why taking the human driver out will change this substantially. Indeed, the reported experience of driving down the cost of the human by Uber is that it increases the walking/tube/bus replacement and adds to congestion.

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Re: Batteries are a stupid solution for EV's anyway...

"Cars spend 90% of their time parked, time that is more than long enough to keep them topped up with charge."

Only if there's somewhere to plug it in. How many of the places where cars are parked have a charging point available? How do you propose to set up the infrastructure to provide the extras you'd need? No, it's not just a matter of dig a hole and stick in a little post for every few metres of pavement. Have you thought how hefty a 3-phase cable you have to provide down each side of each street where those posts go? And the extra sub-station capacity to supply those cables? And the extra infrastructure to get power to such sub-stations in a city? And the extra generating capacity to drive all that?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Its not just manufacturing that needs a solution

"Costs me about £12 a month to charge it overnight, £0 a month in tax, and about £40 a month in petrol"

The £0 a month in tax won't last. The numbers on the road right now are small enough for HMG to afford this as a political gesture. As the numbers mount they'll need the income. They'll also need more income to replace fuel duty. Perhaps a flat rate tax equivalent to existing VED and a mileage charge to replace fuel duty.

Like all the other things that make EVs practical now the taxation advantage doesn't scale.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Its not just manufacturing that needs a solution

" the latest fast chargers are 120kW. A 1/2 hour stop for food and bladder relief should be able to add 180+ miles range, or about another 3 hours of motorway driving (by which time you'll probably be in need of another stop anyway)."

That assumes than pulling into a service station car park you'll be able to park at one of these chargers. If we went all-EV that means that most if not all parking places in the car park would have one.

Now tell us how you're going to get the required number of megawatts into a motorway service station car park.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Its not just manufacturing that needs a solution

"Actually Mr Commswonk, the UK has plenty of power, it's the ability to delivery it that is a little wonky."

That's pretty much what he wrote except for one qualification: "little".

A row of lamp-posts charging cars are going to need a much heftier supply than one just lighting the road. That's the sort of infrastructure problem he referred to. Than, of course, unless you put the lamp-posts a lot closer together most drivers won't be able to park next to one to charge up. Cue nightly fights between drivers trying to get charged.

A decade? Nowhere near long enough. You're talking about replacing multiple decades of investment in both the grid and vehicle refuelling.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Its not just manufacturing that needs a solution

"There is no denying that for that journey its going to be a faff but its not generally that hard and console yourself that for the 98% of the rest of the time you wont be visiting any petrol stations and will charge at home."

It probably becomes harder than you think if he has to queue for an hour or so at each service station waiting for his quarter of an hour or however long it takes for the "quick" charge.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Its not just manufacturing that needs a solution

"They are fitting fast charging points at service stations, and supermarket car parks are getting charging points also."

1. How fast is fast in relation to fuelling and equivalent mileage into a petrol-powered car?

2. How many charging points are there in a supermarket car park in relation to the number of cars that might need charging there if the country went all-EV?

3. How would you provide sufficient power to such places if the country went all-EV and the majority of vehicle owners depended on them?

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: This has not been properly thought out.

"You shouldn't write off the whole electric car idea just because it is of little use to you (or me)."

Similarly you shouldn't specify electric cars for all because they can do all you happen to need.

Maplin shutdown sale prices still HIGHER than rivals

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"But the repeated leveraged buy-outs of Maplin by private equity players was arguably where the rot first set in, leaving it with high debts and owners that wanted to milk the firm for all they could."

el Reg needs to give up the vulture logo. These guys are the real vultures.

OK, deep breath, relax... Let's have a sober look at these 'ere annoying AMD chip security flaws

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If they're on the level they have just given potential clients notice of why not to deal with them. Or maybe the initial investment was running out and they had to whip up some publicity PDQ.

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Re: Pot and Kettle

"Nice to see the un-educated like to down vote a question without realizing the true purpose."

Have you stopped beating your wife? A yes or no will suffice.

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Re: Pot and Kettle

"your attempted snark is both unwarranted"

Don't be too sure. I think we can work out who might have warranted it.

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Re: Timeline

A domain squatter has [registered intelflaws.com].

How about intelflawsareworse.com?

This could get really silly really fast.

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Re: Odiferous Rodent

"If this is the case then why would they publicise the flaws?"

Maybe they think Intel are easier to compromise than AMD.

Developer mistakenly deleted data - so thoroughly nobody could pin it on him!

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"f some of the socketed chips (in those days that would be most of them) where a little loose, this reseated them, thus fixing the problem."

All except those which are jolted out of their seats completely. Phase 2 is to gather up the loose chips & decide which sockets to put them back into.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Modern USB keyboards on desktops running Unix variants still do that in the terminal program."

It's not restricted to USB keyboards, in fact it's not the keyboard itself. The keyboard driver converts the key presses and releases into emulation of some sort of traditional keyboard input, typically that of the VT100 or one of its descendants.

Former Google X bloke's startup unveils 'self flying' electric air taxi

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: Achtung! Lawyers at 6 o'clock high!

"The lift fans are unsafe: no ducts" etc.

There are these things called helicopters...

I remember going along to give evidence at a coroner's inquest. One of the cases before mine was about a squaddie who'd gone round the back of the helicopter he'd just left and into the tail rotor. In fact, it's that case I remember and not my own. I thought of it when I actually got a lift to a scene in one. The landing was on slightly sloping ground & I just remembered that case in time and decided that leaving down-slope was better than leaving up-slope.

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Re: I can see a number of issues

"Who wants the job of doing nothing for extended periods, then suddenly being thrown into an emergency situation you have no prior knowledge of, and where the live of several people depend on your decisions."

Fire brigades, emergency ambulances, lifeboats... It wouldn't be a unique situation.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"Could you please tell that to the police helicopters that circle round and round and round near my house at 3 in the morning?"

What you should really be worrying about is what's going on on the ground to bring them there.

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"Do most cities allow helicopters to fly over them?"

Lisburn is a city nowadays and when we lived there we got rather a lot of low flying helicopters overhead. I wouldn't have been surprised if our roof had tyre marks on it. We were rather close to Thiepval barracks.

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

Re: I'm not an aviation engineer...

"Also, also, if this is supposed to be a city-based air taxi why was the video flying over mountains and valleys"

Because the development flying has been done in the S Island of New Zealand where they have lots of mountains and valleys but relatively few cities.

Man who gave interviews about his crimes asks court to delete Google results

Doctor Syntax Silver badge

"YOU do not really need to know anything about a person's history if you are not employing them."

You may need to if you're buying some product or service related to past offences from them. You may not wish to hand over sums of money for safekeeping to someone who has a history of embezzlement.

Air gapping PCs won't stop data sharing thanks to sneaky speakers

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Re: Relevance

"The people who build them and ship them have physical access so that's one hell of a big handful."

So what do you do, compromise all of them in hope that you'll eventually find one online that shares a room with an air-gapped one you're interested in? However, just to be on the safe side, if you're installing an air-gapped machine make sure it's a different make to any others in the room.

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