* Posts by Trilkhai

186 posts • joined 20 Aug 2016


WWW = Woeful, er, winternet wendering? CERN browser rebuilt after 30 years barely recognizes modern web


Re: Works fine...

I think that in cases like showing database contents, CSS is fine... The problem is when it's used to produce static documents instead. I periodically become frustrated enough with the number of errors in e-books I'm reading that I'll take the time to fix the problems myself (removing DRM if needed), and the auto-generated CSS in there is almost always an absolute nightmare to deal with. The most jaw-dropping I recall encountering a couple of years ago was one really sluggish book that turned out to have every single character placed in a separate [span class="text"] element, sometimes with multiple font-formatting spans overlapping them so that using search-and-replace resulted in the formatting change applying to far more text than it should've been. (I eventually gave up with that one and downloaded a pirated copy that had more reasonable code.)


Re: Not by hand

OpenOffice also has kerning options & ligatures built in — doesn't LibreOffice?

What did turbonerds do before the internet? 41 years ago, a load of BBS


Re: I missed the beginning and almost the end

I remember getting a 14.4k modem and thinking 'I cant read that fast'. But that was OK as I was on AOL and they took care of that.

I remember wanting to upgrade from 14.4 to 28.8 so badly as a teenager that I made a number of charts and graphs to prove to my parents that the up-front cost wouldn't take too terribly long to be surpassed by how much they'd save in AOL hourly fees.

How I got horizontal with a gimp and untangled his cables


Re: GIMP is hard to master

I was thrown by the use of "gimp" as well, as in American English it's normally used as a very derogatory synonym for "physically disabled person." Normally I can figure out any unfamiliar terms on El Reg through context, but this one stumped me enough that I had to look it up on Urban Dictionary.

CES flicks the off switch on massager award… and causes a buzz


Exactly. Here in California, the rare times I do hear the word pronounced, "meta" is said "metuh" ('e' as in 'end' + 'a' as in 'was') and "data" as either "daytah" (1st 'a' as in 'late' + 2nd 'a' as in 'aardvark').

I wonder which accent Dabbs was thinking of as being "American"...

Happy new year, readers. Yes, we have threaded comments, an image-lite mode, and more...


Re: Dark mode theme?

This -- I don't care for either blinding white *or* overly-dark mode themes (as switching from dark to another tab/website is then too blinding), but it'd be nice if they'd code the pages to respect the user's browser settings instead of forcing the black/white scheme.


Probably far more than 4,000

They should include the uptick in people who switched to using the Week In Summary URL -- I can't speak for anyone else, but the only reason I'm not "one of the 4,000" is that I was unaware of the option and used the WIS page instead.


Re: Pulled the plug...

I'm lazy, so I just added it to my browser's bookmarks. :-p

Oz cops investigating screams of 'why don't you die?' find bloke in battle with spider


Re: Spiders: there is no "overkill"

...there's no reason to expect that thousands of daddy long legs wouldn't have attracted other - potentially poisonous - spiders hoping to feast on them.

Actually, there is one good reason: daddy long-leg spiders (pholcidae) commonly eat many other species of spiders (including some highly venomous ones) as part of their diet, either after trapping them in their web or hunting them down. I hate spiders in general, but they're the one type I'm content to allow in my home.

The Palm Palm: The Derringer of smartphones


Re: "useless coin pocket" ?

Quick check: my "useless coin pocket" currently holds

- about 7 € in small change, because coffee machines

- a 20 € note because that can come in handy

- a naildriver, because it does everything you could possibly want to do (pop open a beer bottle, rip a parcel open, break the ice in the freezer, dig a hole to plant seeds, emergency sharpening of a blunt blade, open letters, file your nails on the rigged sides for the ladies, you name it -really *).

I have to admit that I'm jealous — even though I wear "old-school" relaxed-fit jeans (plain old women's Levi's), the coin pocket on mine is nowhere near that large. It mostly just acts as a place to temporarily stash one or two keys or the 4cm-wide keyfob; it's too narrow for anything else.

Boffins don't give a sh!t, slap Trump's face on a turd in science journal


Re: Yeah...

Any society can easily determine its rulers by understanding who they're not allowed to mock. People have been brutally mocking Trump since before he was even elected and nobody's been sent to jail for it, so it's pretty obvious that he's not ruling anybody.

Being a leader is completely different from being a ruler. (Edit: not defending our current Pres at all, just pointing out that "leader of the free world" would be an entirely different thing from the slightly oxymoronic "ruler of the free world.")

The internet is going to hell and its creators want your help fixing it


I think that's actually a big part of why Usenet worked so well until it became temporarily overrun by spammers — the newsgroups tended to be subject-specific enough that a reasonably limited number were interested in participating in a particular group, and the threading further limited it by topic. Even beyond that, most programs let users easily banish trolls to their personal 'bozo bin' and auto-hide posts containing certain 'trigger' phrases, rather than needing others to police things for them.

Tesla autopilot saves driver after he fell asleep at wheel on the freeway


How can it ‘normally’ save lives when this is the first publicized case where they actually did, in contrast to the well-known cases where they got drivers killed instead? For that matter, if the CHP hadn't noticed the guy and managed to force the car to stop, there's a good chance that it would've run into the deadly barrier a few minutes later, so we really can't say that the car saved him.


Re: Are these real American cops?

California Highway Patrol officers typically aren't anywhere near as trigger-happy as most city police are, probably for a variety of reasons.

RIP Bill Godbout: Cali wildfire claims the life of master maverick of microcomputers


Re: RIP, Bill.

Being on top of things only lets you know that there's high fire danger, which the whole region was being warned about at the time. Survivors have made it pretty clear that there was no warning — by the time they were aware that there was a fire, they had maybe a matter of minutes to get out of there, then the resulting traffic gridlock meant many had to abandon their cars and try to outrun the flames to the nearest water source.

Forest management may or may not have helped. The rural part of last year's Wine Country fire was across dry grass and occasional scrub oaks, but it showed the same "firestorm" behavior that this one did. The main things that the two sites really had in common was that they're both believed to have been set off by faulty electrical lines over dry vegetation and spread by high winds.

Hands up who isn't p!*$ed off about Amazon's new HQ in New York and Virginia?


Re: A billion here, a billion there...

I understand Ms. Ocasio-Cortez is of Puerto-Rican descent, and in Puerto Rico they may use the "long scale" ... So, either the newly elected Representative doesn't know how big AMZN really is or she is at risk of being confused by budget numbers. Either option would look worrisome to me if I were American.

You know, there's a word for the practice of making assumptions about people based on their ancestry rather than on their own words & actions...

Google swallows up DeepMind Health and abolishes 'independent board'



I agree with you, but have to point out that Inbredistan is a very different part of the US than California...

Bill Gates joined on stage by jar of poop as he confesses deep love for talking about toilets


Re: Cue the toilet humour... whoops, too late!

That would've gone well with the .wav of a toilet flushing that I used with Windows 9x in place of the default "empty recycle bin" sound.

Also, your coupling of "2d flatso" with "toilets" has given me an entirely new perspective on the holes in the animated Yellow Submarine film...

Nikola Tesla's greatest challenge: He could measure electricity but not stupidity

Thumb Down

Re: country & western singers

Wouldn't the British term "chav" be better? It's not like poor uneducated whites in the Deep South are all "wary of cleverness" or anywhere near the only racial sub-group to produce a lot of people that fit that description...

FWIW, as an olive-skinned Californian geek, I'm not even close to being a redneck; I just don't think it's any cooler to target them than it is to use the offensive terms for poor uneducated non-whites and suggest they should be killed first.

Manchester man fined £1,440 after neighbours couldn't open windows for stench of dog toffee


Re: Still not as bad

Nor as bad as one neighbor we had in the late 70s, whose teenage son would shovel their 2 dogs' worth of shit over the fence into our backyard when told to clean up after them. That said, he did stop after his parents found out and thrashed him for it.

From today, it's OK in the US to thwart DRM to repair your stuff – if you keep the tools a secret


Re: But how are...

Then the solution is for more states to enact strict safety inspections for vehicles and enforce them. Though that only helps when vehicle owners actually pull their vehicles out of service after being told they're not road-worthy enough to be legal, unlike the asshole who owned the modded stretch limo that killed 20 people recently.

This two-year-old X.org give-me-root hole is so trivial to exploit, you can fit it in a single tweet


Re: Now, if this were a Windows exploit...

Windows is a huge commercial product that a single company makes avalanches of money producing & selling. X and Linux are non-commercial creations produced primarily by groups of volunteers spanning the globe and freely available online. By all logic, we should be able to hold Windows to a vastly greater standard of security & reliability than Linux; the fact that we can't is a problem.

Also, you need to update your "stuff Linux people say" list, it's embarrassingly outdated. You might as well include references to Vista and USB 1.0 while you're at it.

Motorola: Oops, phone busted? Grab a spudger and go get 'em, champ


Re: I think my next phone will be a Motorola

I'm surprised that your security update was for April; I have an E4 and just got an update at the beginning of October. That said, given a big part of why I bought my E4 was because it was supposed to get the upgrade to Oreo, I'm also fairly frustrated by the way they've dragged their heels. Especially as word now is "we might do it late this year, but we might decide not to make the effort, so stay tuned!"

Silent running: Computer sounds are so '90s


I wasn't happy with any of the ringtones or notification sounds that I could find online, and couldn't find many classic-rock instrumental riffs that could be edited to loop seamlessly — but then I discovered that I could find a lot of fun loopable stuff in old Amiga Demoscene videos. I have a few in a public folder in case anyone wants copies; they're clipped from YouTube videos of the same names.

Haunted disk-drive? This story will give you the chills...


Re: Put a heater in the safe then ?

This must have formed the cornerstone for Apple's operating "Bible", its still an abuse that Apples practices to this very day (gluing in components, making devices impossibe to fix, going after non-authorised repairs shops).

Nope... The Apple II family of computers were designed to be easily opened & highly user-servicable, and a wide range of third-party companies produced all kinds of expansion cards for users to cram into them; they were just like PCs in that respect. Apple didn't start locking down their hardware and or shutting down 'unauthorized' repair shops until around the time Jobs returned as a pseudo-mythological figurehead.


Re: Put a heater in the safe then ?

That was never a problem with the four Apple II 5.25" drives that saw heavy use on my mother's & father's houses when I was growing up — my pair still work just fine. From what I have read since then, head drift can gradually occur over time on any floppy drive (esp. one moved around a lot), but will only become detectable when it reaches the point where it can't read disks written by other drives and vice-versa; it will go on reading disks it wrote to just fine.

Leaked memo: No internet until you clean your bathroom, Ecuador told Julian Assange


Re: Is Julian's cat leaving little "presents" on the carpet in the Ecuadorian embassy?

I'm torn on this one. On the one hand, cats can be extremely attached to their people, especially if they're inside with the person 24/7, so being taken away by total strangers is traumatic. OTOH, it sounds like Assange may not be cleaning the litterbox (or waste on the floor), washing the water/food bowls, or cleaning & tossing/recycling any cat food tins, and that would be a very unhealthy environment for the cat to live in.

Hopefully either Assange will start taking proper care of the poor cat, or somebody it already trusts & likes will take it home to live with them.

Google Cloud chief joins Saudi shindig exodus over journalist's worrying disappearance


@amanfromMars 1

Here on Earth, people writing in English generally only capitalize the first letter in a sentence, the use of "I" to refer to oneself, names, acronyms, and some titles. Capitalizing virtually every word in a sentence — let alone a paragraph — makes it quite a bit harder for others to read. You really should inform the educational authority back on Mars of this for the good of young Martians wishing to visit or communicate with Earthlings in the future.

Take my advice: The only safe ID is a fake ID


Re: Silly first name.

Everyone I know here in the US shifts the pronunciation of "Notre Dame" based on which location is being referred to — "Noter Dayme" if it's the American university, "Notra Dahm" for the famed church in Paris.

Powerful forces, bodily fluids – it's all in a day's work


That sort of thing is the reason that I (and doubtless many other kids) were given a couple of stern warnings about how to interact with our family's TV & VCR, and spanked if we kept doing it or were ever caught doing something potentially harmful. Electronics were much too freaking expensive for our parents & grandparents to let us get off with a mild scolding for destroying them...

Convenient switch hides an inconvenient truth


If it wasn't unauthorised laser printers blowing the 3A desk sockets, it's menopausal women with fan heaters

Menopause causes hot flashes and thus tends to drive women to find sources of cold air, so you're leaping to the wrong conclusion on that one. In your company's case, it was far more likely that — like most women — they needed the room to be a higher temperature to be anywhere near comfortable than the men did, and someone had set the thermostat well below that point.

Fortnite 'fesses up: New female character's jiggly bits 'unintended' and 'embarrassing'


True, that's why it's *not* realistic

Same thought here, except her movement looks more to me like she's either not wearing a bra, or she's wearing flimsy lingerie — and has falsies made of Jello. Any female with more than an A-cup would at the very least be wearing a supportive bra to exercise, and a sports bra for more vigorous movement like running or jumping. There's no way that girl would be competing without one.

So for those that aren't quite 'getting it', imagine it's an animated guy: showing that there's something there in an animation is good, but most men probably wouldn't appreciate a detailed outline of the guy's penis/balls boinging with every step as if he's performing jumping jacks while stark naked while aroused. (Boioioioioioing!)

How an over-zealous yank took down the trading floor of a US bank


Re: stdin?

As someone who was in college at the time, it doesn't strike me as entirely plausible, either. C was a requirement for getting even a 2-year/Associate CS degree in '96, and stdin was definitely part of the course I took at a community college in '95 for fun.

Sysadmin misses out on paycheck after student test runs amok


Re: "Snoopy characters"

Charles Schulz would be rolling in his grave if he hadn't always had healthy distance towards his work and fame.

He also wouldn't be rolling in his grave because he absolutely loathed the name "Peanuts", which was arbitrarily assigned to his work by the syndication company.

Trump shouldn't criticise the news media, says Amazon's Jeff Bezos


Re: Definition of fake news

Fake news is a news hype cycle about what is going to happen but never does. … That easy.

Apparently not that easy, given you got it wrong. Reporting on potential future events is mere speculation; fake news is a form of slander/libel, meaning that it has to make deliberately false or misleading claims about someone or something. Saying "candidate X is going to destroy the country" is mere speculation, for example, while saying "candidate X runs a secret child porn ring in a nearby pizza parlor" is fake news (slander/libel).

No, no, you're all wrong. That's not a Kremlin agent. It's someone with 'inauthentic behavior'


Re: Sheryl Sandberg was/is considering a run for President

Given she worked her way to the top, has reportedly had a successful career running huge companies that haven't declared bankruptcy, and appears to stay cool under pressure rather than publicly lashing out — so she's at least more qualified than the person currently holding the position. If he can do it, well...

HTC U12 Life: Notchless, reasonably priced and proper buttons? Oh joy


Re: Right decisions?

While I don't feel like my 5" Moto E4 is too large for my overly-long-fingered female hands, it's about the most I can cram into the back pocket of my jeans and I suspect a larger phone wouldn't fit easily into my jacket pockets, either.

I'm just waiting for a company to release a phone with a flexible 5.25" display and market it as the Floppy.


Re: Notchless

> who views webpages on their phone in portrait?

I definitely do... I zoom the article I'm interested in reading so it spans the width of the screen and only the cruft I'm not interested in is off-screen; if I view the page in landscape mode, then a large chunk of the screen is wasted on sidebars & similar stuff. Also, proportionally speaking, a blank line in portrait mode would take up 90 characters of space rather than 160 characters, so portrait mode would also waste less space.

We're all sick of Fortnite, but the flaw found in its downloader is the latest way to attack Android


>pretty much every major manufacturer is delivering security updates on anything that cost more than a couple of hundred quid, and isn't more than a couple of years old

Including all active phones when describing patch adoption rates is being accurate; limiting the results to only the expensive recent phones is what would qualify as "swaying the metric."

A person shouldn't need to spend a few hundred dollars every other year to have a secure phone, especially given that major-brand (Moto, LG, etc.) budget phones have been powerful enough for a while now to more than adequately serve an average adult for 2-3 years.

Everybody dance now: Watch this AI code fool friends into thinking you can cut a rug like a pro



I'm in the US and not on a VPN, but still got the "video not available" error until I clicked on the YouTube logo to watch it on their site instead. (Then, once I did get to see it and discovered 90% was just people doing jerky robotic movements followed by the system struggling to handle ballet, it was a bit of a letdown. It'd be much more interesting if they could make it look like elderly professors & American-football linebackers were performing Travolta's "Saturday Night Fever" dance, MC Hammer's moves, or other high-energy fun stuff...)

Just how rigged is America's broadband world? A deep dive into one US city reveals all



These figures take the minimum broadband speed of 25Mbps as the benchmark. That is sufficient if only one person is watching a high-definition video...

No, try again. I pay for a 6 mbps DSL connection, and that's sufficient for my mother to watch TV in HD while I websurf or watch lower-quality YouTube/ShoutCast videos. As nice as 25mbps would be, it's absurd to claim people need it to watch videos, surf the web, or do much of anything else remotely reasonable.

It may be poor man's Photoshop, but GIMP casts a Long Shadow with latest update


Re: Forget the geeky stuff, sort out the user experience.

Odd. I'm only moderately technically-oriented, learned Photoshop up through an advanced (class) level about 17 years ago (last version prior to the "CS" junk), but had little trouble switching to GIMP in 2008. I believe GIMP's UI is fairly similar to that old version of Photoshop -- I know that when I tried using a recent CS edition, I was frustratingly lost due to the UI changes.

To respond to some of the things mentioned in this thread:

-- Choose a brush/pencil size: select the shape in the tool box, then tweak the "size" control beneath it or use the [ and ] keys to increase/decrease size.

-- Draw (or erase) a straight line: select the brush or pencil and a size, then click at the starting point on the image, hold down the SHIFT key and click around the endpoint (as long as you don't release the SHIFT key you can readjust it).

-- Undo: hit ctrl-z... Or use the Layers & History box: IIRC 'history' is the second tab from the left; once it's selected, you can step backwards through every action you've taken.

I admit that the UI could definitely use a lot of work and that it needs a name change. Yeah, yeah, we know what the acronym stands for, but we all refer to it as GIMP, which *is* an insulting term.

Ever seen printer malware in action? Install this HP Ink patch – or you may find out


(and seriously, who the hell exposes a printer to the internet?)

Someone who has a printer/scanner that they want to be able to scan/OCR/upload documents to a shared service without physical intervention, have it grab documents/images from the server to print out, etc. and get firmware updates so it keeps pace with changes to its compatible services.

(Though to be fair, I leave my Brother printer/scanner unplugged most of the time so it doesn't waste ink by compulsively cleaning the fucking cartridges every few days.)

Early experiment in mass email ends with mad dash across office to unplug mail gateway


Majordomo woes

Back when I was in college about 20 years ago, I volunteered to run a discussion list for a bunch of mostly-senior-citizen genealogists using my ISP account's Majordomo access in spite of having never actually tried to administer it before. In order to spare my users a ton of test messages, I created a "groupname-test" list for me to work out the kinks on before applying it to their group. After several hours of struggling to get everything set up, I sent a frustrated test message consisting of foul language — but predictably forgot to include the "-test" in the address, thus accidentally cussing out 20-30 grannies. (Thankfully, when I apologized they told me that they had actually found it quite funny.)

Microsoft still longs to be a 'lifestyle' brand, but the cupboard looks bare


some households (on the other side of the world) can't afford that subscription

A lot of households right here in the USA can't afford it, either.

And in current affairs: Rogue raccoon blacks out city power grid after shocking misstep


Bah, 6,000's nothing…

Seattle is lucky. Last weekend, about 18,000 houses in my city as well as the municipal water pumps lost power for 3-4 hours, and so far all PG&E has told people is that the incident somehow involved a bird. (How that was possible, or whether it should even be possible in the first place, hasn't been explained yet.)

IBM fired me because I'm not a millennial, says axed cloud sales star in age discrim court row


Re: Simple solution

Nah, they've already stuck the early Millennial prototypes with the idiotic label of "Xennials." (Dumbest name possible for a generation...makes us sound like houseplants with some kind of seasonal-sprouting identity disorder.)

Not OK Google: Massive outage turns smart home kit utterly dumb


This is a bit disturbing — the closest thing that I have to an IoT device is my networked printer and I've only used Google Assistant briefly once out of curiosity, yet my Moto E4 spent the past day or so periodically displaying the useless "sorry, something went wrong" message at the bottom of the screen.

User spent 20 minutes trying to move mouse cursor, without success


Re: Not Millennials!

The math-challenged** demographers finally admitted a year or two ago that people born in in the mid-late 70s & early 80s are a separate generation due to the immense technological/cultural shifts that took place. Unfortunately, instead of giving us a cool name that references technology*** they decided to name us Xennials, which sounds like a houseplant with a seasonal-blooming identity disorder.

**According to them, Gen X is the offspring of the Silent Generation (which had its first kids in its late teens/early 20s) & Millennials are the kids of the Boomers (which had their first kids in their early 20s), yet the SG & Boomers were each respectively 25+ years old at the time.

***like the "Micro Generation", which at least would reference micro-computers (orig. term for the 8-bit home computers released when we were infants/little kids) and microwaves. I can't speak for you, but I'd rather be called "Gen M" or "a Micro" than a dysfunctional houseplant.

Is your smart device a bit thick? It's about to get a lot worse


Re: Some men do get periods ...

At least 1% of the population of the world are actually, biologically, medically, intersex.

That's the same portion as people like diabetics, autists, redheads, etc....

Estimating the prevalence of intersex people is difficult, as there's no consensus on what is or isn't included. The conditions that genuinely involve some crossing of the sexes (chromosomal abnormalities, androgen insensitivity, genitals that aren't clearly male or female, etc.) appear in fewer than 1/1000 births. That's nowhere near the percentages of the population who are diabetic, autistic, red-headed, etc.:

Diabetes - 8.5% of the population

Autism - 1.5% of births

Redheads - 2-6% of Northern Europeans, 1-2% of all races


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