* Posts by gnasher729

816 posts • joined 13 Oct 2014


Fun fact: GPS uses 10 bits to store the week. That means it runs out... oh heck – April 6, 2019

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: 52 weeks per year

GPS doesn’t have years. It just counts 1024 weeks.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Week count?

GPS ignores leap seconds. So it’s time is off UTC by quite a number of seconds, on the other hand it makes it easy to calculate the exact second from one GZpS date to another.

gnasher729 Silver badge

If I was the developer, then I would figure out that a timestamp can never be older than the device itself (if you buy a TomTom today, it will never receive dates from Jan 2019 or earlier, so we can just use a window and hope the device doesn't last for 1023 weeks :-) Probably changing the ROMs going into manufacturing once ever year or even every five years is fine.

But even without this, you'd only get into trouble if some satellites are in week 1023 and others in the next week (week 1024 but transmitted as 0). But that state lasts for less than a tenth of a second.

Crypto crash leads to inventory pile-up at Nvidia, sales slaughtered

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Your Own Fault NVidia

"You gambled with Crypto and got burned. I have no sympathy for you since it was us gamers that got screwed in all of this."

NVidia didn't get burnt. They made a ton of money from crypto. Five times more than from gaming (just guessing). And now crypto is mostly over, so they make less money. The crypto money is still in their pocket. Now people who bought shares when profits went up because of crypto, they will be in pain. But NVidia isn't.

But Nvidia? Imagine someone offered you four times your current salary for three years, and after three years you are back to your old salary. Did you get burnt? No, you didn't. You made lots of money.

Forbidden fruit of smut, gambling iOS apps found flourishing using Apple enterprise certs

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: I don't think Apple can effectively oversee who qualifies as a "business"

I needed a DUNS ID for my hobby app in the app store, and got it for free, with no problems, so this isn't exactly what you'd call a "hurdle".

And we are talking about an "enterprise license" here. To distribute apps in your enterprise. Which is pointless for companies with less than 100 employees, because you can do that as an ordinary developer.

Reliable system was so reliable, no one noticed its licence had expired... until it was too late

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Remember Y2K?

There was the story of one insurance company who was _mostly_ Y2K ready. The only problem was that they couldn't handle people who were burn and lived in _three_ centuries, like born in 1899 and still getting a pension in 2000. They found they had 14 cases, so instead of changing the software, someone got the responsibility to handle these 14 people manually.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Remember Y2K?

It was less widely reported that some UK supermarket chain ran into a problem some time in 1996 when they received a delivery of tinned beans with an expiry date in 2000. They kept changing the expiry date down to December 1999 for a few months until the software was fixed.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Remember Y2K?

Well, the software that I'm currently working on has a "problem" where it will malfunction if you don't run it for ten years and then run it again. I'm not bothered really.

Crypto exchange in court: It owes $190m to netizens after founder 'dies without telling anyone vault passwords'

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Someone had wikipedia open when they wrote that

"Shamir Secret Sharing". First time I read about it was in Donald Knuth's "Art of Computer Programming", printed some time in the 1980's. Of course you might tell Adi Shamir to not write his own crypto, but he'd probably just say "and who are you?"

And it works perfectly fine for k out of m people. Just a polynomial of degree k-1, evaluated at m points, so k results reconstruct the polynomial, an doing everything over some finite field makes sure there is ZERO information out from k-1 results.

Apple files yet another appeal against $503m FaceTime patent payout

gnasher729 Silver badge

474 pages

474 pages of documentation?

If I was ordered to pay about $500 million dollars, then obviously I would write 474 pages of documentation. Less than one page per million dollar. Are you seriously complaining about that?

Apple: Trust us, we've patented parts of Swift, and thus chunks of other programming languages, for your own good

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Daniel Belin is right

That comment alone - stealing from Xerox - makes it clear to anyone who’s been in the business a bit longer that you are a clueless troll.

Core blimey... When is an AMD CPU core not a CPU core? It's now up to a jury of 12 to decide

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: /proc/cpuinfo Never Lies (or does it?)

"For me, a core on a multi-core CPU has always meant that I can run an additional thread without impacting performance. "

Doesn't work like that on modern Intel processors. The cores share a very important resource - the processor cooling. So if you run an additional thread, temperature goes up, and you need to reduce the clock rate.

Doesn't work for any modern processor. The cores share a very important resource - RAM. If you add more cores, your performance per core goes down when the cores start fighting over who can access RAM first. (L2 and L3 cache are also often shared).

Apple hardware priced so high that no one wants to buy it? It's 1983 all over again

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Look and Feel

An anecdote from that visit: Afterwards, Bill Atkinson spent a long time making overlapping windows work, which the Lisa didn’t have yet. He was _sure_ he had seen them at his Xerox visit. He was wrong, so he copied a Xerox feature that didn’t actually exist!

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Limped after Apple II

Microsoft ‘s investment came mostly from the fact that Apple had them by the balls because lots of Apple’s QuickTime code had ended up in Windows.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: What about the NeXT?

"It was also astonishingly expensive hardware/software combo very few can afford. The only real one I saw was at CERN, an organization not known to procure cheap hardware... far better than the Lisa, but too niche to sell in quantities enough to survive."

Long after the Lisa.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Just plain embarrassing

"Try systems like the Zerox Star, ICL Perq, the LMI and Symbolics lisp machines. You might also look at the embyonic days of Sun, and just what a Sun-1 was."

I've seen a live demonstration of Lisa vs Xerox Star during CeBit. The Xerox Start cost about five times as much as the Lisa. And the Lisa ran circles around it. It was expensive. And what it did hadn't been seen anywhere for that price.

Are you sure your disc drive has stopped rotating, or are you just ignoring the messages?

gnasher729 Silver badge

"he had to search the keyboard for the "A" key - "I'm not a typist" he said."

Did he have a magical keyboard where the "A" key moves to a different position every day?

NHS England claims it will be all-digital within the decade

gnasher729 Silver badge

Should be no problem at all, since they can just take the £350 million a week Brexit savings to pay for it.

Chip-for-tat escalates: Qualcomm's billion-Euro bond to block Apple iPhone sales in Germany

gnasher729 Silver badge

Apple could do worse. They could give everyone an iPhone XR who comes to their store to buy an iPhone 7, for the same price, and charged Qualcomm when Qualcomm ‘s claims are finally rejected.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: This patent nonsense is going too far

Well, clever boy, the German court in question has decided nothing except that Qualcomm made a claim that isn’t so unreasonable that it needs to be thrown out immediately, and that Qualcomm put up a bond to pay Apple’s damages if or when the claim is eventually turned down.

More nodding dogs green-light terrible UK.gov pr0n age verification plans

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Just like buying a magazine.

And making me give Pornhub a copy of my passport solves this how exactly?

All we need is someone publishing the passport details of Theresa May and Boris Johnson.

Heard the one where the boss calls in an Oracle consultant who couldn't fix the database?

gnasher729 Silver badge

I started with Fortran 77. There was no heap, and there was no stack.

Apple iPhone X screen falls short of promises, lawsuit says

gnasher729 Silver badge

It's 5.86 inch. The numbers that I found are 2436 x 1125 pixels at 458 ppi, which makes it 5.32 inch high and 2.45 inch wide, which makes it 5.86 inch diagonal.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Screen measurements in inches are tube size

A 25" 4:3 screen does actually have a bigger area than a 25" 16:9 screen.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Pentile

"Samsung has been using PenTile for 10 years now, since they first started shipping AMOLED screens. Yet now that Apple used it, SUE?"

Of course. The basis for the lawsuit is not so much the facts, but whether it embarrasses the company. Nothing in the world could possibly embarrass Samsung, so no chance for a payoff from them. Very little chance of a payoff from Apple either.

Ticketmaster tells customer it's not at fault for site's Magecart malware pwnage

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Their Site

If Ticketmaster included scripts on their website, then they are fully responsible to their users for the action of these scripts. Even if they didn't turn the scripts malicious. The only way they would be off the hook would be if they are "not in any way responsible". So just a little bit responsible would be enough.

Sure, if Ticketmaster has to pay out damages, then they are absolutely entitled to recover their money from the creator or distributor of the malware. But that's their problem, not the problem of people visiting Ticketmaster's website.

Privacy, security fears about ID cards? UK.gov's digital bod has one simple solution: 'Get over it'

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: another iteration

Problem are people like Boris Johnson. No lack of IQ, but total refusal to use it for anything remotely useful.

Customers baffled as Citrix forces password changes for document-slinging Sharefile outfit

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: "Unless there is reason to believe a password has been compromised ..."

"If Citrix did indeed run a comparison of their sign-ins against publicly known compromised credentials..." then I would be very worried, because Citrix is not supposed to know their user's passwords and not supposed to be able to do this easily. And not faster than any hacker could do it.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Quick, more boiling oil!

"I just write it down on a post-it note and stick it under the keyboard"

You want to be protected from evil hackers on the internet, and from nosy colleagues at your workplace. So if you use this method, take a password that is memorable to you, but not to your colleagues, add a longish random password, and only write the longish random part on a note. Evil hackers on the internet can't read the note. Nosy colleagues are usually not skilled enough to add your memorable words part.

Scumbags cram Make-A-Wish website with coin-mining malware

gnasher729 Silver badge

No, it's not. "Think of the children" is the term used when a slight potential danger to children is blown all out of proportion for an emotional appeal. It doesn't apply when someone reports about actual child abuse, and it doesn't apply here where someone actually rips of charities.

Washington Post offers invalid cookie consent under EU rules – ICO

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Other solution

That's what you do. My wife doesn't know how to do this. And I know how to, but I shouldn't have to.

Super Micro chief bean counter: Bloomberg's 'unwarranted hardware hacking article' has slowed our server sales

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: I give SuperMicro the benefit of the doubt.

"Not clear they can sue unless they can prove some sort of conspiracy. "

Of course they can sue. It is unlikely they would win a libel suit, since it would be very hard to prove malice. However, if a court ruled "there is not one bit of evidence that Bloomberg's facts are true, but Apple / Amazon etc. cannot prove malice", the companies would be happy with that.

Court doc typo 'reveals' Julian Assange may have been charged in US

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Well he's a bit of an arse, but...

Not quite what he said would happen. If he is being charged now (and we really don't know that at all), that is many many years later. He could have gone to Sweden, maybe gone to jail for a short time, flown back to Newzealand, all before charges were brought. Now it may be too late.

iPhone XS: Just another £300 for a better cam- Wait, come back!

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: License the OS

Says who? Apple _did_ license MacOS and it did them no good. Nowadays they are making most of the profits in the PC market and a _huge_ part of the profits in the phone market. Licensing MacOS and iOS would be about the stupidest thing they could do.

Data-nicking UK car repairman jailed six months instead of copping a fine

gnasher729 Silver badge

The jailtime wasn't due to the severity. He got jail because he wasn't an employee anymore and had no right to access the old employer's computers at all, so he was caught by computer hacking laws. If a regular employee did this (one that had permission to access the data, but obviously not permission to send them to a competitor), it would have only been a data protection violation.

Of course the company can sue him and the receiving company for damages in any case.

Upset fat iOS gobbles up so much storage? Too bad, so sad, says judge: Apple lawsuit axed

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Yet some manufacturers get it right.

Hidden memory might happen if the manufacturer has different sources. If they buy a million 4GB chips and a million 4.3GB chips, half the customers want to return their devices. They were selling you 4 GB, and you got 4GB, no matter what chip was used.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: It's marketing lies allowed to become reality.

Actually, nobody expects 1TB to be 1024 x 1024 x 1024 x 1024 bytes except some halfwits. The uneducated have no clue. The educated know that 1TB = 1 trillion bytes. Only halfwits confuse TB and TiB.

Solid state of fear: Euro boffins bust open SSD, Bitlocker encryption (it's really, really dumb)

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: The issue is changing the password...

Interesting how you describe quite accurately how encryption on an iPhone works.

Wow. Apple's only gone and killed off Mac, iPad, iPhone family... figures for units sold to fans

gnasher729 Silver badge

So what are they going to do when the latest iPhone runs at twice the speed of the latest Samsung phones...

Mourning Apple's war against sockets? The 2018 Mac mini should be your first port of call

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: That £3,859.00 BTO version Andrew is talking about...

... and you could save a few pound by buying the RAM elsewhere.

Apple breathes new life into MacBook Air with overhauled 2018 model

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Mac mini SSD

"My careful study of Apple's computer division over the past few years has indicated that making stuff people want to buy has been off the table for some time."

My careful study shows they are not selling the stuff _you_ want to buy, but they are selling the stuff _people_ want to buy.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Well it will look so stylish...

Two months: Under warranty. 2 years in Europe: Most likely covered by consumer protection laws.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Well it will look so stylish...

My 2006 MacBook got retired because I got a faster one, not because it didn't work. My 2010 MacBook works just fine after eight years.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: I see the $ to £ conversion rate means nothing

"on XE.com the current conversion rate says it should be £941.21"

Oh well. Have you ever heard of VAT? Of the £1,199.00, Apple takes £200,00 straight away and sends them to the nice Mr. Hammond who is going to look after them.

Another major difference is UK customer protection laws, which mean that Apple will have to fix things if they stop working within two years. That doesn't come for free either.

Apple's launch confirms one thing: It's determined to kill off the laptop for iPads

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Future ARM laptops

There have been rumours for Macs with ARM processor for long time.

I'd say: There _will_ be Macs with Intel processors for a very long time. Current ARM processors are fine compared to a current quad core laptop, but don't come near the high end Macs (18 cores currently).

But if you see that new iPhones and iPads come with half a terabyte or a terabyte of storage, Apple could just let users run MacOS X on an iOS device, possibly as an app. Take an iPhone XR, run the "macOS" app, attach keyboard and monitor.

China tells Trump to use a Huawei phone to avoid eavesdroppers

gnasher729 Silver badge

Why would Huawei be safer?

Can someone explain to me why a Huawei phone would be safer than an iPhone?

Florida man won't be compelled to reveal iPhone passcode, yet

gnasher729 Silver badge

"Not in the US, maybe, but in the UK, you most certainly can."

I'd like to see a link for that. I assume you actually _read_ what I wrote beyond the first sentence and didn't miss the fine distinction between revealing your password and unlocking a device.

Apple to dump Intel CPUs from Macs for Arm – yup, the rumor that just won't die is back

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: It would be another world changing innovation of Apple

"The only world that changed was the world of the aimless slurping their Starbucks. 99.99999% of 'the world' has little to do with staring and dabbing at a small slab of glass for hours every day."

Wait a second... Are you telling us there are only 700 iPhone users in the world?

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: What else can a move to ARM bring ?

"If Apple did ass extra instructions to an ARM architecture it would fundamentally invalidate every ARM compatible compiler."

Existing compilers would just not use the new instructions. And Apple was always the driving force behind Clang, so you can be sure that any new additions would be supported by Clang - which is what people use to compile MacOS X code. Not that I expect any additions.

gnasher729 Silver badge

Re: Worth the RISC

"You'd've thought so, but I've recently contacted the developers of two Mac applications I'm rather fond of (both of them first came out on 68k Macs). They're currently only available in a 32 bit version.

According to the developers, the only way they can convert them to 64 bit is to completely re-write them in Apple's Swift language which they are having to learn. And that's going from Intel to Intel...

On the other hand, I'd guess that if you've got a fully 64 bit application written using Swift and XCode, then Apple will arrange things so that converting an Intel application to ARM will be low-effort, assuming that Macs are switched to ARM CPUs."

Going from 32 bit to 64 bit can produce all kinds of problems, especially if the code was written at a time where nobody that 64 bit might ever exist. As you said, built for 68k Macs initially. That would have been before 1990.

What these developers probably have is _ancient_ code ported to MacOS X using the Carbon framework, which was never ported to 64 bits. That would have happened around 2002 or so when MacOS X was introduced, and stopped being supported about six years ago. There is no requirement to switch to Swift, Objective-C would do just fine. But 32 bit won't run on MacOS 10.15 anyway (that's the next version after the just released one).

Intel 64-bit vs Arm 64-bit using modern frameworks is no problem. The capabilities of both processors are the same, so any code not using Intel assembler code will compile and run identically.


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