* Posts by Dark_Ronius

9 posts • joined 22 May 2017

Firefox doesn't need to be No 1 – and that's OK, 'cos it's falling off a cliff

Dark_Ronius

I switched to Pale Moon after the beta of the most recent legacy add-on switch-off resulted in 8 out of 10 of my extensions being declared "legacy", a few of them refusing to work, and Firefox randomly crashing within a few minutes of opening. I had already reduced my add-ons as I was willing to give the new browser a try, despite repeated protests to the Mozilla. However, the fact so many problems cropped up at once led to it no longer being my main browser. In the past I would have given leeway, but it felt like one change too many despite vocal opposition from users.

That being said, I have no brand loyalty to Pale Moon; the dev seems arrogant and snarky throughout his website, seemingly unable to resist making digs at how his set up and process is superior to Mozilla. It gets tiresome pretty quickly. I have never had a problem with WebExtensions, just their implementation of it, and having more sympathy for devs who have already had to make major rewrites because of Mozilla changes over the last few years. "Proudly" declaring "we will never support WebExtensions" frankly comes across as childish... Meanwhile a whole page is devoted to why having tabs underneath is superior, and why having an add-on bar is superior, before at the very end saying "...But nonetheless you can have it how you want". I prefer tabs on top, I prefer my add-ons to the side of a combined addressbar... Now, by the fact he delivers a product which is now far more relevant to me, I now am happy to use his browser. However, a company with a "head" person with those kinds of attitudes isn't ever going to win my support.

Mozilla, meanwhile, I always have a fondness for. It is fine not to be popular. It just feels the jumble of changes they have made to the browser in the last few years haven't put the user first. When they should.

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Welcome to the Rise of the Machine-to-Machine. Isn't it time to 'block off' some data ducts?

Dark_Ronius

GW is almost active!

Does anyone remember MGS2? I played it again recently. It is quite frightening how much of the automated information tagging, context and control plotline, which seemed impossible and was a bit too tinfoil to actually happen in real life back in 2001, is now the norm on a daily basis. That one, giant, mind-screwery conversation near the end of the game seems to pre-date everything from the growth of social networking, to the next stages of the web described in the article... Even to fake news and the actions of the current administration:

(From MGS2):

"in the current, digitized world, trivial information is accumulating every second, preserved in all its triteness. Never fading, always accessible. All this junk data preserved in an unfiltered state, growing at an alarming rate... What we propose to do is not to control content, but to create context... The digital society furthers human flaws and selectively rewards the development of convenient half-truths... The untested truths spun by different interests continue to churn and accumulate in the sandbox of political correctness and value systems. Everyone withdraws into their own small gated community, afraid of a larger forum. They stay inside their little ponds, leaking whatever "truth" suits them into the growing cesspool of society at large."

TL;DR Hideo Kojima created Donald Trump

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Judge uses 1st Amendment on Pokemon Go park ban. It's super effective!

Dark_Ronius

It would seem to set a bizarre precedent if this law was upheld. What about geo-caching... something that usually directly affects the land by placing little boxes?

Or even, what if I decide to meet my friends at a specific location to take photographs and upload them online? This would be identical to Pokemon Go...

There is so much underlying snobbery in legislation like this, it is quite unbelievable. You think any kind of scheme that might promote new visitors to parks would be something to crave for, and something they would want to piggyback on. If this was some book author promoting a "visit your local park day!" there would likely be no backlash (even though it would likely generate an equivalent amount of rubbish). No, it isn't about parks becoming too popular... it's about the WRONG KING OF USER becoming too popular.

In my eyes, anything that gets anyone using more of their national parks is a positive... There are the health benefits, the history, biology... And more than anything, it strengthens the hand in both keeping funding and keeping these lands free of any kind of urban development.

There is so much they could do to jump on the bandwagon... Create leaflets with tips on looking after the environment of the park, to "protect the pokemon as well as other wildlife"... Even outfit the rangers with replica pokeballs to keep the fun factor (for the little kids anyway). They could even organise pokemon hunts at different times of the day with a ranger, so they can at least keep those under control. As I've never played the game I'm not entirely sure how the "catch pokemon" aspect works, whether a pokemon stays in a fixed location or whether just one person can catch it. However I was a player of Ingress, and I presume there is a similar element of co-operation within the team on that. Anyway, my point isn't on the game specifics, but that they could do a lot more to reap their own rewards

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Amazon may still get .amazon despite govt opposition – thanks to a classic ICANN cockup

Dark_Ronius

I find it hard to sympathise with Amazon- well full stop really. Personally, I'd rather not see a .amazon, or .google, or anything like that. But then that comes to the real question... What is the purpose of a gTLD? Or, what is the point?

There seems to be no reason why we can't have .james or .edward... Why does Amazon get all the fun and exclusivity? In my opinion, the fact there is already a location called the Amazon Rainforest should be the one reason there *shouldn't* be a .amazon domain. It might make little impact now, but we have no idea what the future might look like. Although it would be rather humourous for locals of the rainforest to make the argument they were there long before the company!

But it all comes down to the point having a restriction on the number of gTLDs is pointless once you start going down that route. It made sense having them tied to locations, or to a lesser extent broad categories like ".bank", ".coop" etc. But the further they go, the more arbitrary decisions are made which are inherently unfair. Why should The Amazon lose the rights to their own gTLD- seeing as the much smaller Wales gets one? Why should any locality lose those rights, for that matter? It was much easier when it was just countries to worry about.

Besides that, allowing anyone to register their own TLD would stop this madness of buying domains for the sake of protecting ip... There would be a single landgrab for everyone's IP, arguments over specific names. I mean it probably sounds like madness and unworkable. But the system as it stands now seems like madness. This comment sounds like madness because the whole concept seems ridiculous... It reminds me of that toolbar (forgotten which now) which "added" loads of new TLDs... I think it was new.net?

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Stop all news – it's time for us plebs to be told about BBC paycheques!

Dark_Ronius

I hope all those gleeful competitors slamming the BBC for this gender pay gap are prepared to publish statistics for their own organisations.

This all seems a pointless exercise besides making the BBC look bad so the Tories and right-wing press can finally put them out to slaughter. The one advantage being that, hopefully, this will cause the BBC to start seriously working on the gender gap.

But let's be honest, this is nothing to do with fairness... There are ulterior motives at play. Which aren't even particularly relevant to whether there is any point in the license fee or not. I believe there is, and more than that it increases the quality of other TV (take advertising US tv for example). But then I'd rather have a subscription-based service if it meant having more features to the iplayer app, with more historical content too... I would easily choose that over something like Netflix, and maybe that is the direction entertainment will go towards. Ultimately I'd rather the BBC as it is, although I've noticed they're pushing for users to be registered now and things like that.

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Behind the scenes of Slovaks' fight to liberate their .sk domain

Dark_Ronius

There seems to be a holier-than-thou bias in this article, which ironically makes the argument that sovereignty and ownership of the TLD shouldn't even be discussed because of the efficiency of market forces; it seems to imply it is silly for the country's people or government to question what the best method of ownership may be, as a free-market approach is automatically the best so they should shut up and do it by default as it is most efficient. Which sounds, ironically, rather communist.

Arguments against a non-profit taking control seem to revolve around undermining the sincerity of the non-profit argument (look, they have ulterior motives) rather than looking at the positives of such an ownership model compared to the positives of selling the registry off. instead we get a flat "non-profit is bad, look people are doing it for political reasons" whilst singing the praises of how efficient the alternative is. It's no kind of fair comparison at all. Nor does it take into account, y'know, it's the choice of Slovakians; their government at the least, which we would hope are run on behalf of the people that elect them.

This seems to fall from the usual standard of El Reg articles. Even saying it is a comment article doesn't seem an excuse; even these usually attempt some reasoned debate before the author states his/her opinion. This, however, makes far too many assumptions that almost imply anyone who questions them should be undermined and labelled heretics.

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Tech can do a lot, Prime Minister, but it can't save the NHS

Dark_Ronius

Despite all the technology and ability to order repeat prescriptions, it still takes an age to have my medical records or even a list of repeat prescriptions sent to my new GP.

Online services are no good if you're still waiting on the bloody records before your GP will do anything!! I almost feel it would be easier just to give me the records to drop off at the new surgery.

What is even more bizarre is hospitals have instant access to all my medications, conditions through the summary care record. Surely these are details your new GP should have to hand immediately to ensure continuity of care? They might not have access to the information that proves you receive a repeat, but surely seeing it is an ongoing medication would be enough?

What takes the biscuit, however, is that BOTH surgeries used Systmonline for their online services. Indeed, my username and details were the same; I even had a period of a day or two where I could access BOTH surgeriies after logging in, with up to date prescription and medical detailss. It boggles my mind how/why my new surgery can't just transfer this information as a stop-gap until the full records come through. Actually no I'm being diplomatic- It boggles my mind how the hell they couldn't immediately send the records digitally or copy them to the new surgery, especially considering they used the same provider (so they would be equally as secure).

I might be ranting on about one issue that happens to be relevant to me right now; but my point is there is this is JUST ONE example out of many where services are embaressingly inefficient to the point their duty of care is negatively impacted. I understand it's all in the name of data protection etc, but then it brings me back to my first point: why not allow me to take a copy of my records directly, if there are medical reasons to need them? Sign them over and hand the responsibility to me? You don't even need technology to speed up some of these systems.

Indeed, I think the whole focus on systems rather than an element of individual care is another part of the problem, especially for mental health care (where people are routinely discharged from CBT style therapies after a maximum of 10 sessions as this is seen as the most effective, with little insight into whether a person is still unwell or even in some cases I know of still in crisis... The implication being it is their own fault for not being "fixed" after this number of sessions...)

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Project Gollum: Because NHS Caring means NHS Sharing

Dark_Ronius

Am I the only one appalled that an attack like WannaCry can happen to the NHS?

I know a lot of organisations that back up their data onto tapes every night. Meanwhile, at home, if Wanna Cry attacked my computer I'd more than likely get a bit annoyed, stick linux in, wipe my hard drive and start a full re-install of Windows (and probably think "Well it could do with a refresh anyway").

That this can apparently affect patient records and large swathes of the NHS is very troubling. I can understand GP surgeries, not bothering to back up regularly because they are relatively small (and overworked). Or not having the training for techie stuff, or waiting for tech support to refresh their system.

OK in my case I owe my sense of security to Microsoft, Google and Mozilla. I can understand wanting to do things in house. But, if anything, their back up systems should be more efficient and cheaper. I'd have thought.

The bottom line is I had a much needed Doctors appointment cancelled last week. And part of me feels like I should feel sorry for them and take part in the public anger against hackers. But another part of me feels annoyed I lost that appointment because someone didn't know how to do back-ups. And there seem to be a lot of those "someones" across the country.

I feel like I could do a better job blindfolded at a time I struggle to find work.......

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Windows 10: Triumphs and tragedies from Microsoft Build

Dark_Ronius

I've been a huge fan of Metro UI since I first caught a glimpse of it; although its integration into Windows has been a bit crap (going back to an older start menu fixes things a little; but I feel the Start Page would be much better as a desktop background).

Microsoft have probably had the benefit of monetising all my information from being in a bit of a daze the last couple of years because of circumstances. Now I have had Windows 10 for a good while, I don't see the point in changing it (which are probably the final cries of democracy before the machines take over...)

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