* Posts by bombastic bob

5556 posts • joined 1 May 2015

Flatpak and Snaps aren't destined for graveyard of failed Linux tech yet

bombastic bob Silver badge

'bleeding edge stuff' is often overrated

yeah, 'bleeding edge stuff' is often overrated. In particular, when the interface suddenly changes to something you *HATE*, like 2D FLATSO or "hamburger menu" fat-finger-friendliness.

Both of those *kinds* of things have happened somewhat recently. I like the look of Firefox without the hamburger. And I despise what's been done to Chrome.

if "developers" would stop changing things around like that, and focus on security and useful features, maybe the existing Linux distros would track more closely to 'bleeding edge'.

And yeah, static link the binaries, please. It would make cross-distro installs (and especially running on things like FreeBSD) a *lot* simpler. Maybe "just offer a binary built like that" and see how popular it becomes.

Intel's Optane in PCs is as good as it will get for years, says analyst

bombastic bob Silver badge

but if we have to run Win-10-nic to use it...

but if we have to run Win-10-nic to use it, then it's just not worth it (to me anyway).

Remember, Micro-shaft will not support new tech with Windows 7.

Republicans want IT bloke to take fall for Clinton email brouhaha

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Bah!

"I think Fox News is extreme right wing"

eh, no. right of center is acceptable, but NOT extreme. They've got Juan Williams, after all...

Scratch the Surface: Slabtop sales slump takes the shine off Microsoft's 2017 so far

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Old Tech

Surface is REALLY failing because it's all Win-10-nic. And "Ape" before that.

Now, if it could (easily) run LINUX...

FCC's Pai: I am going to kill net neutrality in US

bombastic bob Silver badge

I like Pai

I think he's doing the right thing. Gummint does NOT need to over-regulate "teh intarwebs". Beyond the simple regulation of common protocols, business practices (such as privacy issues) belong with the FTC, and _CONTENT_ should _NEVER_ be regulated by _ANY_ gummint or agency, _REGARDLESS_.

Otherwise, it's "the fairness doctrine" ALL OVER AGAIN, and you KNOW "they" have targeted conservative (and even libertarian) opinions for elimination under the guise of "fairness".

/me would *HATE* to see the day when POLITICAL CORRECTNESS defines what is "fair" (or even *LEGAL*) on "teh intarwebs"

Mysterious Hajime botnet has pwned 300,000 IoT devices

bombastic bob Silver badge
Thumb Up


The 'white hat' (actually GREY hat) infection of vulnerable (and possibly, infected) devices for the purpose of shutting down Mirai is, in my view, a CROWNING MOMENT of AWESOME!

OK it could have been used for bad things, but it wasn't. It should still frighten people, because it's potential use for evil still exists. Some brilliant grey-hat hacker did something "BAD" for a GOOD CAUSE, the kinds of thing that makes for LEGENDARY ANTI-HERO status.

Assuming that the author is 'chaotic good' and not 'chaotic evil', that is.

Ewe, get a womb! Docs grow baby lambs in shrink-wrap plastic bags

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: "Now this is an extream example possibly but if this tech exists its not impossible a"

"the tech is for Mothers at high risk of premature birth around the 23-24 week which is also the abortion cut off date"

has anyone ELSE drawn the obvious conclusion from this, i.e. instead of killing the fetus...

(but hey saving lives is a good thing so there ya go)

/me waits through uncomfortable silence that results from posting this

Don't stop me! Why Microsoft's inevitable browser irrelevance isn't

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Hacking.

"Microsoft products, including the browser, are still the primary target for hackers, because they're used by default by people without technical knowledge."

And, for some damn reason, they seem to be chock full o' security craters, waiting for some 0-day to exploit!

An advantage of open source browsers is the potential for peer review and contributed patches.

MS, meanwhile, re-re-re-invents the browser (complete with all new millennial generation security craters, no doubt, since they haven't learned their lesson yet), with a 2D FLATSO interface, calling it "Edge", and expects us NOT to associate that name with an activity that involves pleasuring oneself...

TVs are now tablet computers without a touchscreen

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: 'unused bit of the video signal'

"the colour information was in active picture."

yeah old-style color broadcasting, compatible with B&W on both ends. single side band, with various bandwidths of the broadcast channel dedicated to specific signals: luma, chroma, and audio [later I think they added SAP and some other stuff]

Chroma was phase modulated 3.something MHz above the carrier in the USA as I recall. The bandwidth of the luminance signal was kept below 2.something Mhz, and the color bandwidth to about 500khz (I think that's right), leaving a little bit of room to prevent interference. And it was single side band. And the audio signal was 4.5Mhz above the carrier so it was already being done for B&W only broadcasts. Color just stole a bit more bandwidth from the B&W signal, which nobody really noticed.

Color burst during horizontal would 'ring' the crystal, which stayed in phase long enough for a single horizontal sweep. Then it was used to phase demodulate and generate the RBG signals for the 3 color guns (fed by the control grid, usually), with the B&W signal on the 3 cathodes. A better method could have been devised, but doing it this way kept the parts count low.

it really was some pretty good tech back in the day, combining AM and FM and phase modulation and SSB like that.

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Hardware Acceleration Required

"And how do you to propose to convert the incoming 10-bit stream into one the hardware decoder can understand"

pixel = (10_bit_value >> 2)

or similar (as long as the YUV conversion to RGB doesn't take any longer than before)

Hackers uncork experimental Linux-targeting malware

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Did you even read the article?

yes, but the default sshd.conf for FreeBSD disallows root logins. OK I think most Linux distros do that too, nowadays...

also another plus for FreeBSD is that a non-wheel user cannot su to root. You have to su to a wheel-group user (GID 0) and THEN you can su to root. One more layer to frustrate system-crackers that want to pwn you.

/me typically allows only specific cryptically named "guest level" users with very strong passwords to ssh in from "teh intarwebs" and 'fail2ban' is always on for the dictionary attackers.

Microsoft cracks open patch mega-bundles for biz admins, will separate security, stability fixes

bombastic bob Silver badge

oh, wow, whoopee twiddle, it's chocolate and vanilla now!

two new flavors! AMA-ZING!

I oughta give it the flying fickle finger of fate award while I'm at it, but at least it's getting the WHOOPEE! award, complete with twiddling finger. OK it's the index finger. For now.

regardless, it's still a FORCED UPDATE being pounded up pushed onto your computer.

I didn't see in the article whether Home and Pro users get these "flavor" options or not. Probably not. Yeah, for the rest of us "masses and minions", we're damn lucky if we get lubrication beforehand...

Stanford Uni's intro to CompSci course adopts JavaScript, bins Java

bombastic bob Silver badge


"You can run your C# applications on Linux just fine."

Again, NO. Just NO. I'm aware, and I want _NOTHING_ to do with that. I was angry enough when Tomboy was included with gnome on Debian. It took effort to remove it. I took the effort to remove it. I never want to see anything like _THAT_ polluting a perfectly good Linux distro, EVAR again!

/me checked, no troll icon. you must've been serious.

bombastic bob Silver badge


"I'd probably go with both python and C# "

C-pound? NO. NO.

Both Python and JAVA. That will do (for an intro course). But NOT C-pound. NO. It's an abomination, a bastardized clone of Java with a bunch of Micro-shaft excrement and ".Not" thrown in for entrapping developers into "the Microsoft Way" of doing things, a gateway to UWP and "the Metro". NO. It's the epitome of bad programming habits, unnecessary complexity when none is even REMOTELY needed, etc. etc.. NO. Just NO.

C-pound is to object oriented programming as snake oil is to medicine

(stick to Javascript before going down THAT hell-hole)

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Biggest problem is the name.

"If you were writing an application (out of the browser), you'd use Node.js"

oh my various gods, I HOPE NOT!

Python would have been a somewhat more reasonable choice (if it must be simplified AND interpretive). But the "mensa candidate" dim-bulbs at Stanford chose Javascript instead.

/me facepalms

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Introductory

"JavaScript is fine for learning about object orientation."

and spawns some of the WORST! PROGRAMMING! HABITS! EVAR!!!

I particularly cite what was already mentioned, the 3rd party bloatware typically downloaded from CDNs to support worthless "functionality" that could easily be done with style sheets and tables and "old school HTML".

If you want to teach "object orientedness" it's better to do it with C++, In My Bombastic Opinion. The problem with the BASS-ACKWARDS way that it's being done all too often nowadays (i.e. multiverse:universe:galaxy:system:planet:continent:nation:district:person:molecule:atom and you start with 'multiverse' to get 'atom') promotes GROSS inefficiencies, like the ones inherent in ".Not".

If you design objects in C++ instead, you can start with something that makes a LOT more sense (interestingly enough, the basics *behind* how COM works in OLE 2.0 is actually pretty good; how they implemented it, no so much in many ways, but the basics behind it are worth paying attention to).

And of course, good C++ code looks a lot like good C code.

Instead we'll be "teaching" the next generation how to create CRAP code using JavaScript.

What ARE they smoking over in Palo Alto these days?

"Welcome to Stanford. Here's your BONG"

[there's way too much "programming" in web pages already. we don't need to excrete a bunch of people from colleges that are confused into believing that 'all that javascript' is a GOOD thing]

Qualcomm's Windows-capable silicon will land later rather than sooner

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: "run x86 apps in cloud"

"At that point, run everything from the cloud and just use a dumb terminal locally. Already seen several times..."

wait a minute, this reminds me of something... it's a TIMESHARING system! You know, green terminals with hotspot text areas (VT or HP terminals) that you can tab around and naviguess to, connected via serial port cables to an expensive mini or mainframe computer kept in an air conditioned room... ah, THOSE were the days, weren't they?

I think I prefer distributed processing of actual personal computers, thanks, even if it's just to read my e-mail and surf the intarwebs.

Swapping out "teh Intarwebs" for the serial cable, and making our personal computers a bunch of "dumb terminals" for "the cloud" timesharing service, is JUST! PLAIN! DUMB!!!

[but the big-iron fans can dream, and apparently they still do]

/me facepalms again

While Facebook reinvents Sadville, we still dream of flying cars

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Technologists?

if Zuck were serious about flying cars, he'd have an R&D team secretly working on it and only talk about it when it's about to go public. Anything ELSE is just bragging.

bombastic bob Silver badge

attack by flying penises - well, they did something similar in 'Tank Police'

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Better cars

and #9 as well. Especially Windows "Ape" and Win-10-nic.

#9? #9? #9? <-- obligatory Beatles reference

Lyrebird steals your voice to make you say things you didn't – and we hate this future

bombastic bob Silver badge

Good news everyone!

I saw this capability abused on Futurama by the Professor's clone-son.

(why anyone would want to use this in any OTHER manner, other than crime, is news to me)

now, a good 'vocaloid' system that has no robotic accent - I'd like that

Alert: If you're running SquirrelMail, Sendmail... why? And oh yeah, remote code vuln found

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Article title is misleading

I don't mind, it got me to read it, and knowing that squirrel mail has a vuln is fine. But yeah, heart palpitations just before that point...

Webroot antivirus goes bananas, starts trashing Windows system files

bombastic bob Silver badge

a crowning moment of AWESOME!

this made my day! (Shadenfreude)

Anti-virus is SO overrated.

"Safe Surfing" works better, In My Bombastic Opinion. That is no MS browsers, aggressively use the 'NoScript' plugin, don't view HTML e-mail as HTML, don't auto-view e-mail attachments, no MS Outlook (aka 'virus outbreak'), and NEVER access the internet or e-mail while logged in with ADMIN privs [unless you're doing a software update with a legitimate source, and then be vewy vewy caweful...]

It would've been even funnier if MS's anti-virus had caused this

Would you believe it? The Museum of Failure contains quite a few pieces of technology

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: mein Kampf mit Scheitern

"AVRO Arrow, the greatest jet aeroplane of the 20th century"

I've seen the movie they made about it (from a TV miniseries I guess). Good stuff. The coke bottle in the wind tunnel test was "classic" and it solved so many problems that they had their U.S. counterparts baffled when they went to a U.S. based wind tunnel that ran at mach 2 [as I recall].


Dan Aykroyd was in that, along with a bunch of other famous and semi-famous Canadian actors. Very well done.

and it's a classic example of hackish engineering!

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Er ...

"Though the conspiract theory is that New Coke was a major marketting success"

I remember that being lampooned on a 'Futurama' episode with respect to 'Slurm'.

Micro-shaft should consider releasing a "Windows Classic" based on windows 7... then they'd be successful, too!

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: FFS...

"How exactly is honesty trolling?"

just because you say something, does not make it true (especially true for everyone). and you know that it seems that most people who read El Reg love linux and despise windows [or that seems to be my observation] and so you can expect lots of reactions when you post something like that.

aka "trolling" for a response. you're welcome

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Harley perfume

in the 60's there was a Honda 550 turbo for a while. When the turbo kicked in, even at freeway speeds, you'd often pop a wheelie from the power surge. A relative of mine had one for less than a week (even went to Oxnard to pick it up directly after arriving on the ship), and promptly turned it back in and got a 450 (no turbo).

So yeah, "donor cycle" "rapid death" etc. failure. Not exclusive to Harley.

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Zima anyone?

"Or perhaps Windows Vista?"

you meant Windows 'Ape' and Win-10-nic too, right?

[Vista is better than either one of 'em.]

Once the dust clears (i.e. most of us are running "other than windows"), they'll be declared the reasons Micro-shaft failed. They'll deserve their own wing at the museum. It will be *LEGENDARY* !!!

bombastic bob Silver badge
Thumb Up

Re: Linux

troll icon spotted. joke appreciated

Trump's self-imposed cybersecurity deadline is up: What we got?

bombastic bob Silver badge


yes, if you look at who the "snowflakes" *REALLY* are, they're not Trump - they're those whiny college students that have to do primal scream therapy because Mrs. Clinton lost an election.

And OBAKA as well.

Actually, I'd venture to guess that Trump has been very very busy, having gotten MORE done in the first 90 days or so than pretty much any other president. "Oh, you FOUND one thing!" Congrats. *yawn*

I'm still looking forward to the end of OBAKA-"care", some well needed tax breaks for EVERYBODY, and a reasonable analysis of cybersecurity that's not just a "Harumph harumph our sorry jobs are on the line, we gotta DO something" kind of response.

Farewell Unity, you challenged desktop Linux. Oh well, here's Ubuntu 17.04

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: I have tried to use Gnome

apt-get install mate-desktop. re-log in, choose Mate as your desktop. Enjoy!

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: My thoughts on this ...

"Xubuntu (XFCE) is also pretty good. I wonder why they don't make that the standard desktop."

I would've picked 'Mate'.

Also _NOT_ a fan of the 2D Flatso theme they picked for the examples. Yuck.

fortunately, 3D skeuomorphic themes still exist, even for gnome 3, and there should be packages for all of the other wonderful desktops we can all argue about the virtues of! Or, I expect it to be as much.

Microsoft promises twice-yearly Windows 10, O365 updates – with just 18 months' support

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Dear gods, if we say it, it must be true

"RUN ONLY ON WINDOWS. End of story."

and there are NO competitors for these things?

I've heard of large industrial equipment, that use things like Win 98 for the control software, that's still operational. So yeah, it's not surprising. However, that doesn't justify the argument that there are no Linux (or even OSX or BSD or whatever) alternatives, even more cost effective ones.

Given that I've already written two (yes two) device control prototypes using a $50 Android slab [in one case, controlling via a custom web server; in the other, just the 'droid application via bluetooth], it might not hurt to look a bit further into the future...

(As a reminder, Android is also Linux)

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Twice yearly roll out of incompatabilities

"How about change details of the SMB protocol and thus mounting of SMB shares no longer works."

didn't that happen already, with some of the newer Active Directory [insert profanity here] back when Micro-shaft first added all that? Good thing NT4 domains still worked for XP. Samba eventually got it all working anyway, despite them.

So if Micro-shaft decides to play those games, they've already got a history of losing that particular strategy.

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Dear gods...

"Linux is just fine for technical users but I doubt very much a lot of non technical users would welcome it's arrival on their desktop/laptop unless it's skinned."

Have you ever seen a Mac? You know that OSX is basically UNIX, with a FreeBSD userland and bash shell, right? 'non-technical users' indeed.

With the right desktop and preloaded software, "gramma" will be up and going in 5 minutes or less...

I vote Mint/Cinnamon for a nice gentle transition for the average Windows user.

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Dear gods...

"Why don't you just write 'Unix'?"

it's a brand name. but you could also say 'Unix-like' or 'POSIX' - but '*nix' is shorter.

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Dear gods...

"All the major CAD packages had migrated to Windows, what, 20 years ago? And they're not going anywhere for a good long time..."

It probably wouldn't take them long to:

a) dredge out the old code base as a new starting point

b) as needed, migrate back to OpenGL from whatever DirectX schtuff they're using

c) wrap everything GUI in a nice cross-platform toolkit (Qt, GTK, ?)

Seriously, it's not all that hard, just requires some motivation. A tad time-consuming perhaps, but so would Micro-shaft changing their APIs and *FORCING* everyone to use "UWP". And don't think that's NOT in their plans...

FYI – There's a legal storm brewing in Cali that threatens to destroy online free speech

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Thanks California...

not MY fault - the DemoRats are running rampant and Republicans are outnumbered. They're taxing and spending and regulating us to death, while simultaneously making it easy for their trial l[aw]yer friends and contributors to do all this crap to us...

The Cali-fornicate-you legislature is ONE! OF! THE! MOST! CORRUPT! INSTITUTIONS! ON! THE! PLANET!!! It's like a tin-horn dictatorship these days. And the lyers just throw sueballs around to increase their own income.

Google's 'adblocker' is all about taking back control

bombastic bob Silver badge
Big Brother

Fox, meet henhouse (yet again)

If Google does _NOT_ allow white listing, and does _NOT_ attempt to circumvent their own ad blocker with their own sponsors (thus exempting themselves from its effects), then I suppose it would be a good thing.

I doubt it will happen, though. I remain in 'wait and see' mode before trusting.

What a To-Do! Microsoft snuffs out Wunderlist

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Dear Microsoft

"toytown apps" indeed.

I wonder how long it would take me to develop something like that. 2 hours? 3?

maybe 5 minutes - a shared google doc plain-text file that you can invite others to be able to view and/or edit.

Microsoft shrugs off report that Edge can expose user identities from JS Fetch requests

bombastic bob Silver badge
Big Brother

Re: It's not really a problem

"As no-one actually uses Edge."

a) I wish you were right

b) Sadly, I know that you're wrong

c) They DO need their heads examined

I'm sure the data harvesters and miners will take full advantage of this "feature" for as long as its available, then cache the information, and use it to target ads, etc..

Apparently a reddit user name can also be discovered (see 1st entry on the reddit thread mentioned in the article)

URLs shouldn't even REDIRECT to information that's a potential security/privacy problem. Sounds like time for another RFC.

SPY-tunes scandal: Bloke sues Bose after headphones app squeals on his playlist

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Orwell's 1984

"many idiots think it is fine and even defend the practice"

Problem identified. now, how do we solve this?

bombastic bob Silver badge

you missed the entire point

"What's that you say? He didn't read the UA?"

UA or EULA or whatever "agreement" quickly passed by his eyeballs when he just purchased a device and wanted to use it... regardless of THAT, you missed the entire point:


Needless to say, until Bose ADJUSTS! THEIR! ATTITUDE! they won't be getting MY business.

/me wonders if it's ALSO designed to forward information on "illegally downloaded" music for future retribution by RIAA...

Zuckerberg's absolutely mental: Brain sensors that read YOUR MIND at 100 words a minute

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: 100 WPM

it also assumes you think in "words". i write and speak in "words". thinking is more efficient without them.

PACK YOUR BAGS! Boffins spot Earth-size planet most likeliest yet to harbor alien life

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: Gravity well problem

7 times earth's mass - what would that be in 'gravity' exactly?

maybe a nice place to 'work out' - Just 'Sayan'

Chap 'fixes' Microsoft's Windows 7 and 8 update block on new CPUs

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: "Oh, Microsoft, WTF are you smoking?"

and the message to all new hires:

"Welcome to Microsoft! Here's your bong."

Will the MOAB (Mother Of all AdBlockers) finally kill advertising?

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: TV Ads

double volume = 6db (i.e. double amplitude). double power = 3db. approximately, that is. I don't want to search for the unicode character for a wiggly equals sign

db = log10(ratio) * 20 [for amplitude], or * 10 [for power]

in the case of measured power, it's related to '0 dbm' which is 1mWatt

[you're welcome for the electronics lesson, heh]

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: "People don't hate adverts, just awful adverts"

" Acme Gambling Minimum Stake £5 First Game Free Darts Championships "

we get this on PBS stations across the pond... "Major funding for this program by umpty-squat corporation, {insert slogan here}" - a good 2 to 3 minutes' worth of that sometimes. At least they don't break in the middle of the show. Then again, commercial breaks are a good time to take a whizz or grab a sandwich. The problem is that with DIGITAL TV, a lot of the networks figured out that they can keep SHOW CONTENT volume 6db lower than ADVERTISING volume, so if you don't hit the mute button in time, it's blasting your neighbors with advertisement so you can hear it in the bathroom with the door shut and toilet flushing.

bombastic bob Silver badge

Re: nice reference

Idiocracy, yeah.

don't forget that TV screen (it appears prominently in the DVD menu) that has about 1/4 of its area with actual content on it. The entire outer portion is polluted with (apparently interactive) advertisements. Do the 'area math' and that's about 3/4 of the surface area of the TV screen, covered in moving/interactive ads... (I would expect it's at LEAST 3/4 of the bandwidth, too, including the SCRIPTING needed to make sure you actually SEE the ads and block the content if you use an ad blocker)

Why Firefox? Because not everybody is a web designer, silly

bombastic bob Silver badge
Thumb Down

he doesn't like 'cfg' files?

"At least IE, Edge and Chrome can be controlled via GPO"

no WONDER you posted as an 'Anonymous Coward'!

NEWS FLASH: Only Micro-shaft operating systems have 'Group Policy' nonsense and a polluted "registry" to hold it. Last I checked, they were outnumbered by LINUX. Every other significant OS, as I understand it, is either "unix-like" (Linu) or derived from an actual Unix distribution (Apple). So Micro-shaft STANDS ALONE with their ridiculous "policies" and the monolithic REGISTRY to store them in.

Thanks, I prefer well organized "cfg" files, especially if I can edit them myself. And because Chrome, Firefox, Opera, and others run on NON-WINDOWS systems at least as well as on Windows [from my observations, anyway], I would expect ALL of them to use a method that is CONSISTENT across all platforms to store things like personalized settings in.

So, WELL DONE to the open source world for STAYING with 'CFG' files. Thank you!

/me points out that Windows once did things like this with 'INI' files. putting all of that in "the registry" grew it into the monolithic pile of EXCREMENT that it is today

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