* Posts by Archtech

908 posts • joined 9 Jul 2016

Page:

Nearly half of IBM's $1bn Aussie framework deal comes from mainframes

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: An honest question

Mainframes today are still very fast indeed - especially when it comes to handling many, many simultaneous users and performing database operations and transaction processing.

They are not "big" any more, though, in a physical sense. A low-end modern IBM mainframe could be mistaken for a PC.

2
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: final solution

Admittedly the behaviour of US corporations during WW2 is completely off-topic. However, just to clarify for anyone who is interested...

The book does not blame IBM for the Holocaust. It merely brings to public attention that the managers of IBM - like many other leading American businessmen including, for instance, the infamous Dulles brothers - went on having profitable business relationships with Nazi Germany right up to late 1941. (And in some cases after).

There is also this:

"There is no doubt, however, that the company [ITT] owned 28 per cent of Focke-Wulf Aircraft, whose planes bombed American ships... In 1967 the American government paid ITT $5 million for damage to [Focke-Wulf] plants inflicted during the war by American bombers. The plants were, after all, American property".

https://www.thecrimson.com/article/1973/9/1/the-itt-affair-pbrbemember-milo-minderbinder/

1
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: An honest question

One of the first newspaper articles I ever wrote was about a mainframe system in Bournemouth with clients in the USA and Australia. Due to the 10,000-plus-mile distance to Australia, the normal maximum response time of one second was relaxed to 3-4 seconds. Users in New York consistently got sub-second response.

When did you last see a server other than a mainframe that could provide hundreds of simultaneous users with sub-second response times?

I have owned more than a dozen fairly fast PCs running versions of Windows from 3.1 to 7, and even with a single user they don't always respond in one second - or even five. That's largely because it has never been a design goal of Windows to give the user immediate response.

2
0

Almost 1 in 3 Brits think they lack computer skills to do their jobs well

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Just wait until all the old people die off

70- and 80-year-olds invented computers - along with those who were even older (the immortal Alan Turing is nearly 100 today).

0
0

UK spies broke law for 15 years, but what can you do? shrugs judge

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: So, as suspected the IPT is basically a blind, toothless watchdog

"OMFG William Hague was possibly the first Home Secretary to actually look at the stuff he was signing".

Either because he was so smart, or because he was so dumb.

Sir Humphrey would certainly advise his minister NOT to read some of the instruments he routinely signs. Some people are uncomfortable about lying, and do it badly. So it's better that they actually believe it when they say, "I never saw that in my life before".

8
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: So that's the big deal

Nice example of sloppy, woolly thinking and sloppy, woolly ethics, sloppily and woollily expressed.

The most important fact that your post ignores and obfuscates is that there is a huge difference between a private citizen, perhaps unconsciously, committing a marginal breach of a law that many other citizens (and government employees) often break - and a key government department quite deliberately breaking the law in order to spy on citizens.

As for the subsidiary question of whom to hold responsible (and prosecute, and punish to the full extent of the law), that's obfuscation too. Someone is certainly responsible when a government breaks its own laws, and it seems most unlikely that no one knew that. If you don't wish to blame "the spooks" for breaking the law, then blame their bosses. If necessary, indict the Prime Minister of the time. (Although isn't there a legal maxim about ignorance of the law being no excuse?)

If you are in any way uncertain about the difference between a government and its citizens, here are a couple of important things to remember.

1. The government works for the citizens - not vice versa.

2. The government and all its employees are paid by the citizens.

3. The government is accountable to the citizens.

Lastly,

"When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty".

- Thomas Jefferson

6
0

The butterfly defect: MacBook keys wrecked by single grain of sand

Archtech
Silver badge

Insanely wrong "definition"

Here is a correct definition of insanity (Concise Oxford English Dictionary):

insane

n adjective

1 in or relating to an unsound state of mind; seriously mentally ill.

2 extremely foolish; irrational.

DERIVATIVES

insanely adverb

insanity noun (plural insanities).

ORIGIN

C16: from Latin insanus, from in- 'not' + sanus 'healthy'.

1
4

US gov quizzes AI experts about when the machines will take over

Archtech
Silver badge

Already here for 180 years

As many have already observed, we have been entrusting our fate to artificial intelligences for nearly two centuries now - with results that are shaping up to be catastrophic. As boiling frogs, however, most of us are quite oblivious to this trend.

The AIs in question, of course, are corporations. It's very naive and superficial to believe that an AI must necessarily embody lots of clever software running on huge industrial computers. The AIs to which we have submitted - our corporate overlords in very truth - run very efficiently on Homo Sapiens V1.0, in spite of its many serious bugs. Actually, come to think of it, because of its many serious bugs. Otherwise we would never have done anything quite so suicidal.

Consider, if you will, the corporation originally known as Monsanto - now cleverly folded into the relatively innocuous-sounding Bayer, which most people identify with aspirin although it was actually the developer of the first poison gases.

Bayer-Monsanto (BM for short) is a vast, wealthy and powerful organization that works tirelessly in pursuit of its prime directive: profit. One gets the strong impression that it would continue maximizing profit even if it had to exterminate the last surviving human being to do so. How ironic that Skynet had already been up and running for decades before "The Terminator" was ever conceived!

0
0

UK Foreign Office offers Assange a doctor if he leaves Ecuador embassy

Archtech
Silver badge

Recent changes

Apparently you haven't noticed that Australia has become a US dependency, and is ruled directly from Washington.

0
1

Computer Misuse Act charge against British judge thrown out

Archtech
Silver badge

Interesting precedent

Anyone notice the interesting precedent being set here?

Apparently, rather than an actual trial by jury it is sufficient to have a judge decide what a jury would have decided - if they had been asked.

Can anyone see a wider application of this principle?

Maybe the judge's role might even be assumed by some promising AI...

1
1

US tech companies sucked into Russian sanctions row

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Muppets.

"If push came to shove, most would grudgingly accept that the US is a bit more benign..."

They would be seriously wrong, in that case.

The USA is, and always has been, a huge force for harm in the world. That is simply because, right from the start, it was run by the super-rich in their own interests.

A nation in which everything is for sale is a nation that can have no concept of virtue, no morality, no decency and, to a close approximation, no real culture. All those things have been replaced by money and its pursuit.

Incidentally, this also explains why the US government always behaves like Israel's pet poodle. Israelis and other Jews tend to be extremely rich, and extremely uninterested in ethics when it comes to the fate of goyim. Hence they buy what they want in the Washington bazaar - including US foreign policy. Hardly anyone who matters in the USA has any objection to this, because when Israel and its supporters get what they want, the wheels of commerce and finance are oiled and run smoothly - in other words, treble bonuses all round, yippee.

Russia - as distinct from the USSR - is actually quite benign considering its vast size and considerable power. Its government, led by Mr Putin, is always insisting on legality and morality, and mostly does what it says it will.

1
3
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: When did the United States go totally insane?

No - that's just when you (very belatedly) noticed.

1
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Other way round ?

Irony Alert.

0
1
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: When did the United States go totally insane?

In the sense you mean it, the USA has always been totally insane. Thomas Jefferson, President 1801-1809, is the only US government official I have ever heard of who absolutely refused to accept any gifts or "inducements" while in office. He took this so far that he sent back birthday presents from close friends. The logic, which seems watertight to me, is that only by refusing all gifts can an official remain honest. Relax that rule, and next thing you are going to luxurious dinners, weddings, parties, sporting events, etc.; and then you are taking money from foreign countries to fly (at their expense) on luxury holidays, and being paid vast amounts by banks for boring, content-free lectures.

Ever since Jefferson left office, if not before, literally everything in the US government (and those of its constituent states) has been up for auction. Arch swindlers like the Astors, the Vanderbilts, the Morgans, the Rockefellers, etc. have always spent a king's ransom buying up legislators, executive officials, prosecutors, judges, juries, and everyone who could "help" them with their "enterprises".

For the past century (at least) this massive corruption has spread from the USA to cover the whole world. That, for instance, is why the USA can often get support in the UN. The nations whose representatives vote for US motions do not stand to gain - quite the reverse - but the representatives themselves may have enjoyed a little "sweetener" or two.

14
0

Oddly enough, when a Tesla accelerates at a barrier, someone dies: Autopilot report lands

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Still a bit of uncertainty

"For my part I think that in effect the 'autopilot' committed suicide for reasons unknown".

Ever read Frank Herbert's "Destination: Void"?

0
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Nothing is right first time

They are only following the illustrious example of Microsoft, which has been treating its users as unpaid beta (and sometimes alpha) testers for decades now.

But at least Windows doesn't usually kill you.

5
1
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: My 2 cents

In what sense could this guy be described as an "engineer"?

6
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: These are all valid questions

Some people find Darwin stories funny. Others don't. Diversity - it's a cultural imperative.

8
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Why???

Why would an engineer - of all people - do such a thing? Riding at the front of a 2-ton lump of metal and plastic travelling at high speed towards other such lumps approaching at equally high speeds, with a head-on crash averted only by some buggy software?

Even seen as a method of committing suicide, it is excessively complicated.

4
1

Britain's new F-35s arrive in UK as US.gov auditor sounds reliability warning klaxon

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: I thought economy class was bad

Luckily you don't have to land it. You just get it to the right county and press a button.

9
1
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: What will happen during a war?

Nuclear retaliation against whom? About 30 seconds thought would convince the stupidest of politicians that launching thermonuclear weapons - against anyone at all - could only make matters vastly, and suddenly, worse.

14
2
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: What will happen during a war?

Your questions are academic until you decide who is supposed to be attacking us. (Of course we are far too civilized and kindly to start any wars).

Probably no European country. Hardly likely to be African or South American. Can we rule out the Commonwealth? That basically leaves Russia and the USA, and if either of them attacked us there would be nothing left but a pile of smoking ashes in about 45 minutes. (Yes, even faster than Saddam Hussein could have managed).

Of course there is always Israel... a nation with a thermonuclear arsenal probably larger than the UK's, whose loyalties and policies are utterly mysterious and unpredictable. And it's within easy range.

There is no imaginable situation in which an F-35, or any number of them, would do us the slightest good. Their only purpose is to enrich American billionaires - which they do very effectively indeed.

26
3
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: I wonder...

Yeah, just like HMS "Warspite" which was wrecked on the way to a scrapyard. Some true lovers of great warships suggested that she had beached herself to avoid the final indignity.

God forbid we would keep any of the magnificent artifacts to which we owe our freedom and survival.

17
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: I wonder...

I once had a B-52 fly over my head, quite unexpectedly, at maybe 1,000 feet. It was bloody terrifying.

12
0
Archtech
Silver badge

The real Lightning

There will never be another true Lightning. Not a cockpit sitting on top of a jet engine, but a cockpit sitting on top of a jet engine sitting on top of a jet engine.

That was a real man's fighter jet.

44
0

Visa Europe fscks up Friday night with other GDPR: 'God Dammit, Payment Refused'

Archtech
Silver badge

"But worth thinking that if the industry were redesigned from the ground up, they'd probably have a single payments processor, and that would act as the processor for cash machines as well".

On the reasonable assumption that it would be designed by a moronic baboon fixated on quarterly profits, maybe.

Then again, if it were designed by people like those who created the Internet, it might work pretty reliably.

1
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Cashless society

Who he?

0
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Cashless society

" I take a road trip across Europe every year and have to buy fuel, food and on occasion get cash out of an ATM, and can confirm that my UK debit card always works just fine in France, Belgium, Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, Hungary and Bulgaria".

Except when it doesn't - as the article points out.

3
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Cashless society

"Bad luck's a bugger. Really hurts when it hits, eh ?"

To which I reply with:

"I find that the harder I work, the more luck I seem to have".

- Thomas Jefferson

3
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Closed, time-like curves

"cf Company Scrip."

Precisely.

Ordinary working people got out from under following WW2, but by 1980 normal service was being resumed.

3
0
Archtech
Silver badge

That's the system...

http://radiofreethinker.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/salt-lake-tribune-political-cartoon-federal-reserve-bank-robbers.jpg

5
1
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Cashless society

"It was caused by a hardware failure" is no excuse - it is not even an adequate explanation.

I think I may call this Archtech's Rule. (It's high time I had one of my own).

"Anyone who decides to do something using a computer system is fully responsible for ALL consequences of that decision. There is no 'the computer made me do it' or 'the computer ate your money'".

34
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Cashless society

In the future ordinary people will have no money anyway, so it won't make any difference. Look at the graphs - everywhere on the Web - showing the increasing proportion of wealth owned by the richest 1% (or less).

Ordinary people will bunk in dormitories run by their owners, er employers, eat at company troughs, er canteens, and work the rest of the time to pay some of the interest on their ever-increasing debts.

34
8

Your F-35s need spare bits? Computer says we'll have you sorted in... a couple of years

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: I'll have some of that business please

"Please try landing your F-35 and taking off again".

12
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: I'll have some of that business please

This has very little to do with either software or military avionics. Or with national defence, come to that.

It is purely a matter of business. How much blood can you squeeze out of a stone? (Don't worry if the stone lives or dies).

1
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: I'll have some of that business please

I see you need a refresher course in Biz 101.

Q: "How do you set the prices of your products?"

A1: "Charge enough to cover your costs plus a fair margin".

A2: "Charge every cent the market will bear".

If you chose A1, go to the bottom of the class. And YOU'RE FIRED.

9
0

UK's Royal Navy accepts missile-blasting missile as Gulf clouds gather

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: UK

Traditionally we have taken it in turns. But since Napoleon they seem to have gone off that game.

1
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: UK

The really funny thing is how German politicians are screaming and roaring about the need to spend more on their submarines and jet fighters, when their country has recently been invaded by over a million rather hostile, alien people - whom the politicians welcomed with open arms.

I wonder if the ancient Romans had the same kind of visual affliction?

"Oh no, those aren't Goths, Vandals and Huns! They are probably just Northern and Eastern European tourists. How wonderful - just think of all the money they will spend to boost our economy!"

1
2
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Defence

You remind me of the old joke about the guy who asks the waiter what's in the bowl he has just served. "It's bean soup, Sir". "I don't care what it's been - what is it now?"

In this case, obviously, "I don't care what they're called - what are they really?"

(I would have put in some extra question marks but the bitterness lingers).

1
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Defence

Thanks! Best comment I've seen this month... easily.

0
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Sea Wolf

Could someone who knows basic physics inform us how many G that would necessitate? (Use exponential notation if required).

2
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: South China Sea? What?

Ah, I see. You feel certain people need taking down a peg or two.

How very English. (I'm Scottish, so I tend to just say what I think).

2
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: South China Sea? What?

It's working again.

0
3
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: South China Sea? What?

So our great navy has to protect the South China [sic] Sea from Chinese aggression, in case the Chinese navy should cut off the flow of Chinese exports to the UK.

I think I see.

2
2
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: South China Sea? What?

Seriously? Four downvotes???

It's getting so you can tell the common sense comments on The Reg by the number of downvotes they get.

4
9
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: How fast is 'fast moving'

Or of course a Mach 10 hypersonic missile?

2
0

Zimmerman and friends: 'Are you listening? PGP is not broken'

Archtech
Silver badge

Not bloody likely

"Worst bug? Meltdown already forgotten?"

They wish.

5
0

Airbus windscreen fell out at 32,000 feet

Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Last time this happened...

Although if, as described, the windscreen cracked, it may have broken up and blown out in separate pieces.

9
0
Archtech
Silver badge

Re: Last time this happened...

Yes, Murphy's Law applies always and everywhere - especially when you least expect it.

6
0

Britain to slash F-35 orders? Erm, no, scoffs Lockheed UK boss

Archtech
Silver badge

Safer without aircraft

"But he didn’t believe the MoD would reduce its planned F-35 order, on the grounds that without the full order, Britain’s two new Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carriers would be left in a sticky situation".

Actually, if you think it through you will see that the carriers would be in a far less sticky situation without any aircraft.

They would then pose very little threat to anyone (unless used to ram, or beached as in the attack on Zeebrugge). Which would vastly reduce the chances of their being blown up by a hypersonic missile or a salvo of torpedoes from a silent diesel submarine.

2
0

Page:

Forums

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2018