* Posts by Mike Moyle

1543 posts • joined 8 Feb 2007

How do you like them Apples? Farewell sensible sized phones, forever

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: iPad Mini Cellular

@Dave 126

FWIW, the Bamboo Fineline or Bamboo Sketch from Wacom are fine-point active styli that work with both full-sized and Mini iPads (Wacom claims that the Sketch works on the iPhone, as well, but I haven't tested that, myself.), and, in my experience, do the job nicely at a bit more than half the cost of an Apple Pencil.

That said, though, I have it on good authority -- commentards on this very site, no less! -- who ASSURE me that iPads are just media consumption toys that have absolutely NO professional-quality software, so your friends must just be having you on about using their tablets for work! </sarcasm>

You know what's coming next: FBI is upset it can't get into Texas church gunman's smartphone

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Now is not the time to be discussing encryption control.

What...? It always works for the gun lobby.

Mythbuster seeks cash for roller skates to wear in virtual reality

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: They way I'd do it

Of course, to get the full effect of being there, you'd need a Virtual Aroma mask as well.

Imagine the candles on its birthday cake: Astro-eggheads detect galaxy born in universe's first billion years

Mike Moyle Silver badge

@ Katyanna Quach -- Just for the (incredibly rare) future reference...

As a local, I feel that I should correct one tiny infelicity in this otherwise cogently-written article:

Once one has identified the particular branch of the University of Massachusetts (University of Massachusetts-Amherst | -Boston | -Lowell | -Worcester, etc.) the school may simply be referred to as UMass. This is particularly important in regard to UMass-Amherst, since the private, ivy-league-lite, Amherst College ALSO resides in the town and -- while the context is clear in the article -- confusion can occur if the "Amherst" designation is used by itself to identify UMass-Amherst.

And -- Trust me! -- historically, UMies and Amhersters generally have NOT liked being cross-identified! "Public School (American version) vs. Preppies" is like mixing oil and water.

Funnily enough, when Qualcomm's licensees stop sending in their royalty checks, profits start going south

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Has anyone else seen Qualcomm advertising?

Sure; but Intel ran those ads EVERYWHERE. They were on TV, in magazines and newspapers, even on shopping bags at techy stores, IIRC... You couldn't turn around without seeing a half-dozen "Intel Inside" ads. So far, though, I've only seen or heard of the Qualcomm ads in one market. Now, granted, with MIT and more than a fair number of government brain-boxes and tech startups, Boston may be a disproportionately influential tech city for its size, but it's not New York and it's not San Francisco and it's not any one of a number of other, more important tech and finance hubs. So why the (apparent) big push here and nowhere else?

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Has anyone else seen Qualcomm advertising?

For the past several months, here and there around Boston, Massachusetts -- particularly at North Station, an Amtrak/commuter rail/subway nexus -- Qualcomm has been advertising pretty heavily. ("You use us nnn times a day but you don't know our name," and suchlike signs everywhere and wrappers on the subway card-reader gates.) Has anyone else seen these or are they, for some reason I can't fathom, spending a chunk of money running institutional ads in one market?

I mean, standard business logic would indicate that if you don't sell to the public, you don't waste money advertising to the public. The exception is if you expect your name to show up negatively in the news, in which case, you proactively run institutional ads touting what a swell bunch.of fellows you are. You tend to see a lot of ads from companies like Lockheed and Raytheon shortly before the defense budget comes up before Congress, for example.

If Qualcomm is spending money on institutional ads, they MUST be expecting some sort of return on the investment, and goodwill -- from SOMEBODY -- would be the usual guess. But if the ads are showing up in one city only -- and in the time frame that the ads have been up in Boston, I've also been in Chicago, Nashville, and New York and don't recall seeing them in those cities -- then I don't see how they can get any significant boost from them.

So, yeah... If they are advertising, they must, I think, be hoping to counter any negative press from the court cases and reduced revenue numbers. But I should think that that would require running the ads pretty broadly in many large markets and, in my limited experience, I'm not seeing it. Has anyone else seen them, or can anyone come up with a strategy that makes sense, otherwise? 'Cause I got nothin'.

The case of the disappearing insect. Boffin tells Reg: We don't know why... but we must act

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Starship Troopers...

More "Dust" by Charles Pellegrino, I would say. Cover blurb tag line: "Good news: The bugs are gone. Bad news: We're next!"

Chilling, and highly recommended.


Release the KRACKen patches: The good, the bad, and the ugly on this WPA2 Wi-Fi drama

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"Good sir, I resent that comment I have never been and never will be a troll, I don't even own a bridge."

Do you want one? I've got a nice one in Brooklyn that I can let go for a VERY reasonable price!

Drone smacks commercial passenger plane in Canada

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: How is it different

"One goose at a time, please, no pushing."

Is it really a goose if they're not pushing?

Dumb bug of the week: Apple's macOS reveals your encrypted drive's password in the hint box

Mike Moyle Silver badge

You're wearin' down their resistance, boyo! Keep it up!

Harvard, MIT boffins ink up with health-monitoring 'smart' tats

Mike Moyle Silver badge

But what happens if you stare into d-abyss?

US yanks staff from Cuban embassy over sonic death ray fears

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Canada

I'm sure it's lovely, but -- not to put too fine a point on it -- your college students* apparently come down to Boston, Massachusetts for Winter Break because the temperature hovers around freezing and there's ONLY three feet of snow, so your definition of what qualifies as a holiday may be somewhat questionable.

(* I worked in a liquor store in downtown Boston for several years and saw a LOT of McGill student IDs every February.)

Mike Moyle Silver badge

FWIW, I really wish that everyone who is saying that sonic effects can easily be tested for would add "if the device(s) is functioning continuously." Some news articles report that the affected said that they occasionally heard very localized loud noises.

From the Associated Press viaThe Guardian (Thursday 14 September 2017):

"The blaring, grinding noise jolted the American diplomat from his bed in a Havana hotel. He moved just a few feet, and there was silence. He climbed back into bed. Inexplicably, the agonizing sound hit him again. It was as if he’d walked through some invisible wall cutting straight through his room.

"Soon came the hearing loss, and the speech problems, symptoms both similar and altogether different from others among at least 21 US victims in an astonishing international mystery still unfolding in Cuba. The top US diplomat has called them 'health attacks'."

So, the effects can be quite localized and intermittent, since in this case it's reported to have started suddenly and, presumably, eventually ended. Hard to put sensors everywhere for long enough to have a good chance of finding any putative outside source.

As to it being a false-flag operation, that's certainly possible, but if you can't think of actors inside OR outside of Cuba or the U.S. that would like to see rapprochement between the two countries scuttled in order to further isolate one or both, then it sounds like you're just not looking.

Bless their hearts: Democrats want $40bn to spruce up America's bumpkin broadband

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Isn't the USA the land of the fee?

Not to mention the states that have passed laws banning their cities and towns from offering municipal broadband...

Deloitte is a sitting duck: Key systems with RDP open, VPN and proxy 'login details leaked'

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Had an interesting experience not so long ago

You probably should have gone AC on this post -- now they'll probably try to get you on a DMCA/Computer Misuse Act charge (depending on your location at the time) for breaking their "encryption" to get into a secured file!

Shock! Hackers for medieval caliphate are terrible coders

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"While some of the groups mentioned above have solicited Bitcoin donations to help them buy weapons, scammers have adopted their tactic and Islamic State stylings, diluting the amount of donations that reach extremists."

The enemy of my enemy... Is still my enemy, actually, but I'm perfectly willing to stand watching from the sidelines saying "Let's you and him fight!"

...and laughing.

IT plonker stuffed 'destructive' logic bomb into US Army servers in contract revenge attack

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Slightly inflated cost estimate here?

@ defiler -- You answered your own question:

"I'm sitting here wondering how a middle-aged man becomes so petty as to wilfully try to damage an ex-client's system.

"...you're forgetting the military markup - anything for the military costs at least 3x what it does on civvie street."

Losing lots of easy money can make people do stupid things.

Attention adults working in the real world: Do not upgrade to iOS 11 if you use Outlook, Exchange

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Works here

You're new here, aren't you?

Behold iOS 11, an entirely new computer platform from Apple

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Innovation? We've heard of it

"Seriously, it never ceases to amaze me how multi-core, multi-gigahertz, multi-gigabyte mobile systems can be so excruciatingly unresponsive compared with my 16-bit, 7MHz, 512KB Amiga from the 1980s.

How can this even be possible?"

Selective memory?

"...Hazy watercolor memories... Of the way we were..."

macOS High Sierra more like 'Cry Sierra' for Mac-wielding beta testers

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Obvious solution:

Anyone who figures a workaround for this immediately makes it open source. We're always told that the "many eyes" theory makes open source inherently safer than anything!

So, problem solved.

A todger, a 2.5kg dumbbell, the fire brigade... and the inevitable angle grinder

Mike Moyle Silver badge

The DISK weighed 2.5 Kg

I'm sure the dumbbell weighed considerably more!

HMRC scoops up Microsoft veep for CIO role

Mike Moyle Silver badge

I read "HMRC scoops up Microsoft veep..." and got all excited.

You teases.

Facebook posts put Pharma Bro Martin Shkreli in prison as a danger to society

Mike Moyle Silver badge

A fellow that I used to work with had previously been a guard in a "correctional facility". It was there that he acquired a simple phrase used to describe the inmates that they expected to see back (or perhaps, never see leave) that applies to the Martin Shkrelis of the world:

"Inherently Unteachable".

In most cases, this is a result of the subject having an unshakable idée fixe that s/he is ALWAYS the smartest person in the room.

I'm fully expecting that, even if he DOES end up @ a "Club Fed", Shkreli's apparent inability to learn will inevitably lead him to do something monumentally stupid -- my guess is that he'll try to get some sort of contraband brought in -- that will end up getting him moved to a... less genteel place of incarceration

Cassini probe's death dive to send data at just 27 kilobits per second

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Pity. It would have been... Glorious!

'Don't Google Google, Googling Google is wrong', says Google

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"I was using the word 'and' not to create a list or to indicate a join, I was saying the word itself and creating a pause afterwards."

I believe that a semicolon to separate the clauses would have been correct in this case.

Dude who claimed he invented email is told by judge: It's safe to say you didn't invent email

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: If only if only...

"...I'm not going around telling people I created IRC or ICQ or AIM..."

...because the vast majority of people wouldn't know what you were talking about?

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Where Do I Find These Lawyers

"if we could close down half of the law schools and re-open them as med schools we’d be a lot better off."

You want the sorts of people that go to those schools mucking around with your innards instead?!!? *shudder*

I'll pas, thanks.

Big Tech slams Trump on plan to deport kids

Mike Moyle Silver badge


Of course, Obama was not saddled with two unnecessary wars put on the national credit card by his feckless predecessor; was not facing the collapse of the housing and domestic automobile industries, nor the collapse of the general economy into deep recession or possible depression; and never had his attempt to correct major flaws in the insurance industry -- or, in fact, virtually ANYTHING that he attempted for he last 3/4 of his term -- repeatedly sabotaged by a congressional leadership who stated at the outset that its primary goal was to make him a one-term president, and whose idea of "bipartisanship" is "you agreeing to anything we want".

Certainly not.

Terry Pratchett's unfinished works flattened by steamroller

Mike Moyle Silver badge

" I do think no disk world is better than a disk world that is not up to scratch"

...a scratch-disk world...?

Interesting concept; does it keep changing randomly as parts get overwritten?

Waymo fleshes out self-driving car tech with hardware that goes soft at first sign of trouble

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"Coating the bumper in a sticky layer will supposedly glue the colliding object – such as a pedestrian – to the front of the car during the impact like flypaper, to protect them from 'secondary impacts.'”

I'm waiting for something like GTA Lite where people try to hack the driving AI in order to collect an entire bumper-full of ex-pedestrians!

Blighty’s beloved Big Ben bell ends, may break Brexit bargain

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"The Victorian clock is maintained by a dedicated keeper."

157 years? I should say that he is!

Uber bros kill car leasing program after losing nine grand per vehicle

Mike Moyle Silver badge

The more I hear about them, the more they seem Unter to me than they do Uber.

Assange offers job to sacked Google diversity manifestbro

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Assange shouts at world to stop forgetting him

^^^ -- This.

A sarcasm detector bot? That sounds absolutely brilliant. Definitely

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: "Unit got smaller"

@ technicalben

Well, in this case, "unit" was intended as "one bottle, of colloquial category 'half-pint', 'pint', 'fifth', and 'half-gallon"", but "unit" seemed more concise. The size of the unit (bottle) was, in each case (except the quart upsizing to a liter), made smaller. The number of servings in each unit (bottle) went down; the size of the serving did not change.

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: A massive market

The liquor industry over here was one of the very few to willingly -- nay, eagerly -- convert to metrics when the government tried to get everyone on board back in 1975. The reason, of course, was that with the exception of going from quarts to liters, every other unit got smaller. But, since people were already used to paying $X for a pint, say, just refer to a 375 ml flask as a "pint" -- close enough! -- and there you go: instant profit-margin boost!

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"...I don't really want to have to learn yet another language at my age."

Damn. Now you've made me want to see someone write a programming language that is all emojis. We could call it ᗧ++.

Dems fightin' words! FCC's net neutrality murder plot torn apart

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: "Taking direction from president Trump"

Then, if commercial entities can't/won't extend high-speed access into those underserved areas profitably, they should stop pressuring state legislators to block local governments from forming municipal broadband ISPs to serve their residents.

One or the other, people. One or the other. You're not allowed to have it both ways.

Gov workers told their social posts are more believable than politicians' statements

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"...citizens think they know 'what's really going on'."

Well, we certainly can't have THAT, now can we?

Big Internet balks at fresh effort to crack down on sex trafficking

Mike Moyle Silver badge

How can this be a serious law? Whenever a Congresscritter really wants to get public opinion to unite behind a bill, they give it a "clever" backronym -- vis.: USA PATRIOT Act, STOP SMUT Act, CHURCH Act, etc. This...? The SEST Act? Never gonna fly.

It comes really CLOSE to the SEX Act, so maybe Sen. Portman just couldn't come up with a word that starts with X and got as close as he could.

Did eye just do that? Microsoft brings gaze tracking to Windows 10

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Great! I could get a job as an AI tester: Will it cope with my severe nystagmus or have a nervous breakdown?

In the red corner: Malware-breeding AI. And in the blue corner: The AI trying to stop it

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Maybe

But then scammers would devise an AI that would compare sets of adjacent pixels in a picture to look for signatures of Ostrichization. Where will it ever end?

Microsoft Surface laptop: Is this your MacBook Air replacement?

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: Wot?

@ Olaf -- I'm trying to come up with something about bent coppers getting into your pockets being why you can't afford one of these, but...

Nah... I got nothin'.

Apple exits music player biz by killing iPod Nano, iPod Shuffle

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: British pronunciation of "Jag-you-er" sounds equally silly to we across the Pond

"While I guess a firewall might conceivably rout packets, a router, well, routes them…"

Probably because over here, "route" -- either noun or verb -- can be pronounced "root" or "rout". I would have guessed that it was related to regional dialects, but that does not appear to be the case:


Mike Moyle Silver badge

I have to admit, I'll really miss my 160GB Classic when it finally dies the great death. It's basically started up in a shirt pocket* when I leave the house in the morning, plugged into speakers when I get to the office, and removed from my pocket and turned off when I get home at the end of the day. With the assistance of a case to give me tactile feedback of where the edge of the touch wheel is, I can adjust the volume and jump forward/back without taking it out of my pocket/looking at it on my side-desk. A touch-screen player or phone simply doesn't give me that level of unobtrusive control. That's not even considering that keeping all of my music on my phone means that if my music player gets stolen, I've lost my phone as well!

*I suppose that it should be noted that I tend to seek out shirts with TWO breast pockets to carry phone on one side and Pod on the other. If your wardrobe tends towards tees or polos, then this option is not for you.

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: News indeed

"...Steve Jobs pronunciation of Jaguar as "Jagwire"."

To be absolutely fair, your British pronunciation of "Jag-you-er" sounds equally silly to we across the Pond.

Pre-order your early-bird pre-sale product today! (Oh did we mention the shipping date has slipped AGAIN?)

Mike Moyle Silver badge

"We promise to launder process each transaction transparently from your source currency via Bitcoin, Ethereum, Linoleum and Perineum before we vanish entirely in a puff of blockchain."

Now THAT'S comedy!

Everything you never knew about mail: The Postal Museum opens

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Makes this old geek want to take a visit to to Ol' Blighty!

Breathless F-35 pilots to get oxygen boost via algorithm tweak

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Admiring all this technical talk. Me, I was just feeling sorry for the pilots who apparently got all their air filtered through o' bogs. Flying on the day after Curry Night in the mess hall must be particularly challenging!

Hot HoloLens models 'shafted by Microsoft'

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Re: The Las Vegas attitude...

".... I wonder a country where there's a place like Las Vegas where most "events" are held, can complains about sexual harassment and the like."

Why? It's quite simple, really: There's what you do when you're on the clock and what you do when you're off the clock. Your employer expecting you to do favors for him, personally, after work hours because you do the same thing for pay during work hours is simply wrong, whatever your trade is. If you think it's wrong when it's someone expecting to have access to, say, your salable technical talents for free but see nothing wrong with the same when the victim's salable attributes are appearance and personality, then the problem isn't with the society.

Emirates and Turkish Airlines lift laptop ban on US-bound flights

Mike Moyle Silver badge

Were I the suspicious and cynical sort of individual (...which, of course, I'm not!) I might note that both Turkey and the UAE have the sort of strong-man governments and lamentable civil rights records that Trump seems particularly fond of. I wonder, on the other hand, how many European airlines, say, might find themselves having a suspiciously hard time meeting the new standards that DHS is rolling out for all air travel to the U.S. (Not because their leaders talked harshly to Rumpledthinskin -- Of course not! -- but just because... reasons!)

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