* Posts by Baldrickk

638 posts • joined 26 May 2016


Airbus windscreen fell out at 32,000 feet

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Last time this happened...

The accident investigation report mentions that they found the windscreen, the outside corner post fairing strip and a number of bolts in an Oxfordshire field. There's no mention of it being in several pieces, so I take it that it wasn't. Plus, it's a five layer glass/PVB laminate; the glass layers may crack but the PVB should keep the lot in one piece.

Wow, that windscreen flew all the way from China to Oxford!

(one of you was talking about the new incident, one the old)

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Last time this happened...

The design worked fine, when installed correctly. Have there been any cases where the window fell out where the correct screws were installed? No.

Well, there might have been now, I guess we will need to wait for the report about this incident.

Boffins build a 2D 'quantum walk' that's not a computer, but could still blow them away

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: What sort of problem *is* this machine designed to solve?

That's the travelling salesman problem.

Well, the travelling salesman is one circuit visiting all nodes, the problem described (tankers) is multiple circuits collectively visiting all nodes with a bit of knapsack thrown in (limited load)

Sounds a little harder to solve, though segmentation would help.

Oculus Go: Capable kit, if the warnings don't put you off

Baldrickk Silver badge

And if you're skeptical about VR but nonetheless decided to see what all the fuss is about, the Go will make you glad you didn't splurge on more capable kit.

Or put you off without having the chance to experience what a more comprehensive VR (6DoF tracking for headset and multiple controllers AKA roomscale) is like.

The Go is like an up-market Cardboard experience - as noted in the article, it only has directional tracking, so it doesn't match up to the experience that VR can provide.

If you are considering VR, you owe it to yourself to skip going out and buying one of these, and instead go and try a proper VR setup - if you know a friend with one, try that, otherwise some stores will demo the kit, or there are VR arcades popping up for example.

Give them a try, for considerably less cost, and see what you think of that before going further.

you can choose to, or not depending on what you think of it, I won't try to force anyone's opinion.

It's like buying a car (for enjoyment) - you could buy a Ferrari, but it's expensive, so you decide to buy a second hand Fiesta from the 90s instead to see if driving is fun.

You end up with a car, but you don't get the experience of the more expensive item, so you can't make a fully considered opinion on cars in general.

If you were to go to a track day on the other hand, you could experience it without having to shell out the full price for one, and then decide what you want to do.

UPnP joins the 'just turn it off on consumer devices, already' club

Baldrickk Silver badge

USB cables

(* If using unknown USB chargers, use a cable that has no data connections. Don't plug in unknown USB things and note what messages appear on screen).

So if I borrow a charger, I shouldn't be able to have it quick-charge (because detection of that is done via the data lines)

What about a new charger from a store? do you trust that?

At some point you either have to have a full chain of trust (like with certificates) or you have to take a leap of faith.

Where you draw the line is the important thing. This line may change depending on who you are and what you are doing.

And THIS is how you do it, Apple: Huawei shames Cupertino with under-glass sensor

Baldrickk Silver badge

How often is a reboot necessary?

How good is the battery?

I reboot my phone only when I can't plug it in for a while, or it needs to to run an update.

So not too often.

Your software hates you and your devices think you're stupid

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Older stuff WAS simplier...



You have GNU sense of humor! Glibc abortion 'joke' diff tiff leaves Richard Stallman miffed

Baldrickk Silver badge

$ unzip; strip; touch; finger; grep; mount; fsck; more; yes; fsck; fsck; umount; sleep

What? it's just console commands.

No need for anyone to get triggered.

My PC is on fire! Can you back it up really, really fast?

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: I recall even my mum (a bit like Dilmom) telling me a fire story

That fire story seems familiar:


Scrap London cops' 'racially biased' gang database – campaigners

Baldrickk Silver badge

I made a similar assumption on first reading. Reading again, it's saying that 27% of offenders are black.

This is still indicative of a problem though, as it is about twice as high as you would expect by population, all else being even.

You would think that the database would be closer to the 'real' value of 27% than the 70-odd that it is.

But there could be a reason for this - is the database/matrix a relatively recent thing to be used to counter an increase in violence in those areas? It seems small enough. Are there other reasons other than just racial bias?

I don't know, I don't know anything about it. Just the raw numbers don't necessarily tell the full story.

Windows Notepad fixed after 33 years: Now it finally handles Unix, Mac OS line endings

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Re: Notepad++ @veti

You do know that there is the "Style Configurator" in Np++? Where you can adjust all the colours, fonts etc used to your heart's content?

Yes, people see straight through male displays of bling (they're only after a fling)

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Who owned the money

If I've been told that someone will spend up to £20,000 to get a car for me and make whatever changes to it that I want, and can only spend it on the car - nothing else (i.e. I get to keep the car, but not the money if there is any left over) then you betcha I'm spending that £20,000 on the car.

Depending on what it would get me, I may even put some of my own money towards it too if the reward is good enough.

I get what you mean with the quiz show though.

45-day drone flights? You are like a little baby. How about a full YEAR?

Baldrickk Silver badge

Looks pretty thin (wings, fuselage)

And at those heights, you probably would have a hard time making it out.

It'd be like a U2 but harder to see.

Last attempt to find MH370 starts this week

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: What is important is why, not where

Depends exactly where it ended up and why - if it was purposeful, they should show that the crew was in control - if something had happened to the crew, e.g. depressurisation (for some reason) knocking them out - it would show that they were unresponsive. If there were faults with the plane, these should be able to be determined too - at least the cause of the eventual crash, and maybe whatever caused it to be off course could be determined by the state of the system before that.

There would be some important data to recover, even if not everything was recorded - though I have to admit that I don't know how much capacity they actually have.

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: What is important is why, not where

Though of course, the flight recorders are what would be most valuable now - assuming they are still intact.

We might never find it, but its disappearance has started a push towards better tracking of aircraft - so hopefully we won't lose one like this again.

Reg man straps on Facebook's new VR goggles, feels sullied by the experience

Baldrickk Silver badge

I would like a VR headset

Watching and waiting right now, would have bought a Vive back when they were first released, but at the time I was spending 90% of my time away from home.

The Vive Pro seems like the biggest change was the price. An original Vive or Rift is an option, but there are some interesting things coming up, not least the new LG headset which is supposed to be shown off later this month - and the gossip on that one is substantial. Supposedly, we are looking at a partnership with Google with 5k displays per eye and foveated rendering.

Also in the near future (but not quite as close) NVidia are working on new graphics pipelines (I'm sure AMD are too) allowing for real-time raytracing and asyncronous updates of displays (you've seen the real-time Unreal ray-tracing demos released recently right?)

Lots to look forward too

I don't think I'll be after a Go or the vive equivalent though. Lower quality visuals, lack of proper controllers and 6DOF tracking is a turn-off.

Baldrickk Silver badge

"1903: Kitty Hawk, 1909: Bleriot crosses Channel

Up in the loft last night, I came across a first edition book by Arthur C Clarke - The Exploration of the Moon.

In another box, I found a special edition of Life Magazine - "To the moon and back" which was about Apollo 11

The time between these publications was only 15 years...

Apple and The Notched One: It can't hide the X-sized iPhone let-down

Baldrickk Silver badge

Conventional wisdom says...

wrong according to the latest advice.

Apparently it's best to keep your phone topped up to within 60-80% charge - taking it off when you get to 80% and charging again before it drops below 60%.

If you do need to charge it fully, then do so, at which point there is no benefit unplugging the charger, so you can just leave it plugged in until you need it.

Personally though, my phone goes on charge overnight, and then is carried around with me all day, because that's an actually useful use case, as opposed to one that maximises the battery.

if dev == woman then dont_be(asshole): Stack Overflow tries again to be more friendly to non-male non-pasty coders

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Maybe a silly question, but...

Same question here.

I also don't know how people might be singled out for race, maybe by their name? But then again, that's why I have an online handle - you don't need to share it.

I personally haven't seen anything on the site that I would take to be racist or sexist - it's a technical site, and that's pretty much all that is there - technical answers.

At the risk of angering some people, I wonder how much of this is people having a persecution complex?

If you actually read the blog post, it starts by mentioning women, races and new visitors. The vast majority (~99%) of the post is tailored to that last group - the need to make it more welcoming for new users etc. Its notable that the post doesn't talk at all about reducing gender beyond that first paragraph, and 'race' is touched on in a comment about imperfect English.

So I'm wondering if their view is similar to mine - that improvements can be done, but some people just want to play the gender/race card even when the real issue is more universal?

Windows 10 April 2018 Update lands today... ish

Baldrickk Silver badge

Why 90%?

90% surely applies only if you have 10 machines - I don't see how you could only download 10% of what you would otherwise without missing data.

And how many home users have 10 machines? It's a good thing for people on metered connections, but that 90% seems unlikely for most households.

But what if I have more than 10 machines? Am I only allowed to share updates with 9 other PCs, and then I need to download it again?

Boss sent overpaid IT know-nothings home – until an ON switch proved elusive

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: So many bosses ....

What? you mean you can't?

Scratch Earth-killer asteroid off your list of existential threats

Baldrickk Silver badge

Wait, isn't today the *new* date for when the world ends because [that imaginary planet I can't remember the name of] is supposed to collide with the Earth?

Is someone trying to distract us?

Happy having Amazon tiptoe into your house? Why not the car, then? In-trunk delivery – what could go wrong?

Baldrickk Silver badge

And Amazon couldn't set themselves up for delivering at the same times?

Do you also think that their delivery vans don't deliver to multiple people?

If it can be put through the door, it still can be at the later time if that is desired.


"Fed up of deliveries not arriving in delivery period and drivers filling in a "we missed you" slip instead of actually attempting a delivery of the item" of Tumbridge Wells

Microsoft Lean's in: Slimmed-down Windows 10 OS option spotted

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: I'm sorry Dave I can't do that

I believe the biggest problem is the supply of memory chips into Nvidia / AMD to put on the cards.

Russians poised to fire intercontinental ballistic missile... into space with Sentinel-3 sat on board

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: A lot of work

Rapping on the windows, whistling down the chimney pot

Oh dear... Netizens think 'private' browsing really means totally private

Baldrickk Silver badge

They didn't come up with useful alternative names for 'private' or 'incognito' then.






This is surprisingly hard, I don't think any of the above adequately describe it / don't add other connotations.

"Hidden" for example has the same problem as "private"

*which is ironic considering what many might be searching for

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Like with a cloth or something?

Ususally, it uses `/`es. many will accept `-`s though in addition. These days it's rare that both are not supported, but not rare enough imho.

X marks the Notch, where smartmobe supercycles go to die

Baldrickk Silver badge

I can see a person D category too - wants a decent phone with a decent feature set for a decent price.

You can have all your notches, curved screens etc, your latest processors and so on.

You can have your feature phones and feel superior because you "don't need" other features.

I just want something that works, lets me do what I want and that doesn't cost the earth.

I guess that makes me the phone manufacturer's worst customer. I'd still be using my perfectly capable G3 if I hadn't smashed it. I'll likely be keeping my S7 for at least another tick-tock cycle, presumably on a sim-only contract.

Baldrickk Silver badge

I "bought" my S7 when new (out one month) on a £24 month contract (unlimited minutes, unlimited texts, 6GB data)

Is 6GB not "decent"? I don't tend to get near unless I have turned wifi off "by accident" (usually as a means to stop it trying to connect to use a weak network when the connection is poor, e.g. after leaving the house, getting into the car, then trying to put in an address into the sat-nav app.) and then start watching lots of YouTube, forgetting to turn it back on again.

'Your computer has a virus' cold call con artists on the rise – Microsoft

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Re "putting the phone down is almost always the right thing to do."

They seem to disappear pretty quickly after than IMHO.

Not in my admittedly limited experience. My Father had one of these calls, which he immediately handed over to me.

Cue the PC taking a long time to turn on, not knowing my way around a keyboard ("press the key next to the CTRL one in the bottom corner of the keyboard" - cue "pressing" the "Fn" key multiple times with no response. etc)

After about half an hour, my breakfast was served, so I told him just what I thought of him, and thanked him for letting me waste his time.

This seemed to particularly vex him, so he kept calling our number for another half an hour, to which I dutifully answered, ignored the insults, laughed, and put the phone down again.

I'm not normally anywhere near that good at aggravating people.

Sysadmin unplugged wrong server, ran away, hoped nobody noticed

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: its like the leads at the back of my desk at work.

You don't need house spiders to explain this - or rather, they don't explain it, because wire tangling is an essential property of the universe. If physicists weren't too busy messing around with trivia such as dark matter, string theory and quantum entanglement they'd be getting to the bottom of this. Cable entanglement is far more fundamental to understanding the universe.

I believe that there is in fact an entire branch of mathematics that describes how cables get tangled.

Or I at least remember my A-Level Maths teacher telling me that there is.

The story goes that the guy who started it got fed up of his headphones getting tangled in his pocket, and set out to understand just how it happens, and needed to come up with some totally new methods for handling it.

Motorola Z2 Force: This one's for the butterfingered Android lovers

Baldrickk Silver badge


I can't help feeling that mods are mostly superficial.

Battery mod? I could just use a usb battery pack, and quickcharge my phone from that. It'll also be compatible with other devices

Speakers? At home, I'll either use a 3.5" or bluetooth to play on "proper" speakers. While out and about, travel speakers should fill the same role, with multi device compatibility again.

The keyboard mentioned in a comment above sounds nice, but a small bluetooth keyboard, or one that uses the usb connection is again compatiable with more devices.

I can't help but feel like they are more of a gimmick than anything else, which is a shame.

Car-crash television: 'Excuse me ma'am, do you speak English?' 'Yes I do,' replies AMD's CEO

Baldrickk Silver badge

And to be fair to him, it's an international sport with many different nationalities present, in a country where you can't expect everyone to speak your language. It's not someone well known on the track, not a driver or a team boss etc.

To me it seems like a perfectly polite way to check that you can communicate in the language of the people watching on the other side of the world, before launching into a full blown series of questions that they might not understand a word of.

This feels like the result if a slow news day...

Exposed: Lazy Android mobe makers couldn't care less about security

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Any chance?

My just-over 2 year old Galaxy S7 has received two updates in the past two weeks (I'm on O2).

Mine (On Vodaphone) hasn't had an update since late Jan or early Feb this year.

Wouldn't be annoyed too much about that, but now some process keeps crashing, which causes other apps (browser, gmail, camera etc etc) to hang up. Rather frustrating.

Sysadmin shut down the wrong server, and with it all European operations

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: It can be the simplest of things ...

But seriously, I reckon there are 10 types of IT person: Those that have accidentally shut down or powered off something, and those that are lying when they claim that they haven't !

I'm yet to kill a server and take out anything like that (I'm still young, there is time), but it's not uncommon for me to issue a shutdown command on my own PC, and 10s later remember something that I needed to do...

Small UK firms laying fibre put BT's Openreach to shame – report

Baldrickk Silver badge

Moving house

And I will have FTTP. Yay!

Though I thought I would have access to HyperOptic's network.

Full duplex gigabit if I wanted it, but probably would have gone for the 150Mbs full duplex package instead.

Found out today that instead, it's an Openreach connection.

Which, as far as I can tell is a maximum of "up to" 76Mbs.

So, half of the download I would have chosen with HyperOptic, at a larger cost, and approx 10% of the upload speed (18Mbs I believe)

It's also less than what I have with Virgin (was the lowest package until the recent wake-up where they added a 50Mbs bottom tier) and instead of 100Mbs down, Virgin pretty consistently hit 120Mbs on speed-tests.

Oh, and the openreach link I've been sent to see all the details of my new connection doesn't work.

You know, just to stick the knife in.

What most people think it looks like when you change router's admin password, apparently

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Hmmm

Did that last night for my Father. Installing the box was easy.

Activating the box should have been easy, but the automated activation failed. Then spent 45 minutes on the phone with someone who... lets say her foreign accent overpowered her english.

When we asked to speak to someone else, we were just put on hold for 10 minutes...

It's particularly frustrating as they used to have really good service. - or rather, not terrible service.

Baldrickk Silver badge

randomised passwords

are probably not random.

For example: https://www.theregister.co.uk/2017/06/23/virgin_media_router_security_flap/

Baldrickk Silver badge

I haven't changed the firmware on my router...

...(barring a short experiment on a disposable netgear to install openwrt) in at least a decade.

Not that the firmware hasn't been updated - Virgin Media push updates from their end. As a service they provide, it makes a lot of sense that they keep it updated (especially as it is technically their device - it is provided as part of the service). It means Joe Bloggs is freed from needing to keep track of router firmware updates and so on.

I do make sure that the passwords are all set by me, and stored in my password manager, and make sure my father at least has done the same.

OTOH, my sister's boyfriend "doesn't do updates" because they "are annoying, take time, and introduce changes" - this is on his mac, which is, as far as I can tell, running without updates from 4 years ago.

He was espousing the "if it ain't broke" idea, to which my "but it is broken, hence the fixes" fell on deaf ears.

At least my sister is a bit better at this sort of thing.

Sysadmin’s worst client was … his mother! Until his sister called for help

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: "Has doing tech support for your family ended in tears?"

Every other time?

To be fair, I probably do know the password... it's the old trap of password reuse. The problem is knowing which password they've reused for which site...

I'm pushing a password manager, but it's not getting much use yet.

Baldrickk Silver badge

Rebuilt my sister's machine

Put in one of the drives from my PC after clearing it of content.

Clean install of windows, set it all up. All is well.

Three days later, performance drops through the floor. Talking six hours to boot, about an hour to load the start menu after that... HDD light is continuously lit.

With a lot of patience, and some cursing, I finally manage to kill the indexing service which is responsible for 99% of the I/O access (despite being an almost perfectly clean install of windows). Computer speeds up somewhat.

A lot of knashing of teeth later, I'm finally able to run a SMART diagnostic on the drive. There's one warning flag... For some reason Windows ****s out because of this. Linux doesn't, it's perfectly happy using the drive (but does flag up the warning, just in case)

Of course the whole thing is my fault. - I mean, I had to have done something to it, "problems don't 'just happen'"

Happy ending though. New drive and it all works fine

'Our way or the highway' warranty scams shot down by US watchdog: It's OK to use unofficial parts to repair your gear

Baldrickk Silver badge

Broken screens

I somehow once broke the internal LCD on one of my old Nokias by dropping it - about two inches from the top of my pocket to the bottom of my pocket... Fixed under warranty - no additional cover needed.

The only other screen I have broken was my LG G3 - a phone I thought was brilliant. I managed to knock my elbow against a door frame in a sports centre, flinging it from my hand. It managed to land perfectly horizontally on the polished concrete floor - cue an exquisitely fractured glass panel.

In that case, my contract was almost up, Black Friday was two weeks away and I had a spare phone I could use in the meantime. I ended up with an S7, a sizeable upgrade to my contract (unlimited minutes and 6x as much data) and a smaller monthly bill. Not as small as it might have been if I had gone Sim-only as I was planning, but the difference between that + fixed screen vs new contract was pretty much pennies.

In neither case have I actually been in a position where the cover would have really helped, and so it would not be worth it to me.

They're back! 'Feds only' encryption backdoors prepped in US by Dems

Baldrickk Silver badge

So at what point will legislation force all public servants and politicians to use the "magical" proposed system and only the proposed system?

After all if it is secure and never going to be abused then they have nothing to worry about and surely will be delighted.

heh. They'll still be hosting their own illegal servers in their bathrooms if they think it will be an advantage to them.

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Too late

I don't see the Police arresting that many criminals with guns though. False argument, totally based on trust of people who have abused our trust, repeatedly.

That would be because most people they arrest don't have guns. Gun crime is exceedingly rare here, despite what the news may report.

If someone is seen with a gun, and they don't have a good explanation for it, then they will be arrested, no questions asked.

As for those automatic weapons that can be purchased e.g. AR15s with bump stock conversion? Not readily available here, even the police have custom modified weapons, that are limited to semi-auto, despite the gun not being produced with a semi-auto option.

White House: Is it OK to hijack, shoot down, or snoop on drones? Er ... asking for a friend

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Ironical really

Because alcohol isn't in the Constitution or one of its amendments?

Personally, I'd like to see someone say

"no, we're not going to take away your right to bear arms, but we've been having a think about it. The intention at the time was to allow you all to carry muskets, so we're going to honour that. The only gun ownership now allowed is muskets. Those of you who love your guns still have access to those enshrined by the Constitution, and concealed carry and semi/full automatic slaughters will become a thing of the past.

We are sure that everyone will see the benefits all round"

It's never going to happen, but I would love to see it.

Linux Beep bug joke backfires as branded fix falls short

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: A stand-alone program to send ^G to the terminal?

Well I believe it provides the ability to change the and duration. Something that I used to great effect at college, writing a little app that played a little tune, then proceeded to warble out a sort of siren, slowly rising and falling in pitch. (This was on windows though, not using the beep app here).

Somehow, I managed to make it (purely by accident) continue running even after the user logged off unless they killed it first.

Probably inevitably, having shared it with a friend, it ended up daisy-chaining around the college.

IT ended up going round all of the computer rooms (and this was a big college) disconnecting all the internal speakers from each and every machine, all thanks to me. Whoops.

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: Of course it's not an important security issue

But also it would be installed by default on Windows, and likely couldn't be disabled through the control panel settings some combination of two different control/settings interfaces...

Mozilla rejects your reality and substitutes its own … browser for VR and AR goggles

Baldrickk Silver badge

Making use of space

I have to admit, I was expecting to see something along the lines of separating the tabs out and arraying them out in space - allowing you to grab the one you wanted to look at, wave it around etc like you might do with multiple tablets, all showing different websites if you had them in real life.

More than just a projected screen which might as well be a standard desktop browser.

Six months on, and let's check in on those 'stuttering' Windows 10 PCs. Yep, still stuttering

Baldrickk Silver badge

Re: There's you problem right there...

What card are you running? Nvidia actually have impressive legacy support for their GPUs

Uber self-driving car death riddle: Was LIDAR blind spot to blame?

Baldrickk Silver badge

They hardly jumped out right in front of it. As the post directly above yours points out, they were crossing the road in the open long before the car even got close.

As other posts have made clear, the "dashcam" footage of the incident is very underexposed, making it appear a lot darker and makes the pedestrian visible in the footage well after the point in time when they should be spotted, even by a purely optical system - dash-cam footage taken by other people on the same road shows that it is actually well lit.


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