* Posts by sofaspud

9 posts • joined 9 Jan 2018

City-obliterating asteroid screamed past Earth the other night – and boffins only clocked it just 26 hours beforehand


Re: Not very reassuring, is it

It's not bogus, it's just math.

I'm not a mathematician (or statistician) but my job does involve a large amount of working with statistics. In a layman's-terms nutshell:

Say you have a big bag of things -- marbles or whatever. Doesn't matter what they are, what matters is that each one is individual -- unique -- and your job is to record them. You don't know how many are in the bag to start with, and because your boss is a jerk, you're only allowed to reach into the bag, grab one at random, record it, and put it back afterwards, and then start the process over again.

So you've been at this for a while, and at first every one you grabbed was new. Then over time, you started seeing ones that you'd already recorded. Eventually, you reach a point where nine out of ten times you reach into the bag, you're finding one you've already seen.

At that point you're pretty safe to say that you've seen 90% of the marbles in that bag, and you can even make a decent estimate about how many there are, even though you haven't counted them all yet.

Bad news: Earth is not going to be walloped by asteroid 2006 QV89. Good news: Boffins have lost sight of it, so all hope is not yet lost


I bet Ol' Musky's car took care of it for us. Autopilot's awfully good at hitting things, after all.

Dear El Reg, Will Windows 10 break my VPN? I read it on the web so it must be true


Re: "on devices [...]"

Yeah, in reading the Official Microsoft Workaround for this issue, it sure scans to me like you have to turn telemetry on for RASMAN to work again.


Cranky and cynical as I am, I still manage to raise an eyebrow at this one. The only scenarios I can think of for how a bug of this class could have happened suggest that coding skill over at MS has declined even further than I thought -- and that was already pretty low.

Stop using that MacBook Pro RIGHT NOW, says Uncle Sam: Loyalists suffer burns, smoke inhalation and worse – those crappy keyboards


Re: Customer service?

If that's a Subaru Legacy you're referring to there, the trick I've found for headlamp replacement is to go in through the wheel well.

Which should not, repeat not not not, be necessary, mind you, but there it is.

I bought a pack of those little plastic pressure clips to reattach the wheel well cover, rather than trying to re-use the existing ones, and I can replace the headlamps in about 5 minutes these days. Seriously, though, you should not have to do this, there's no reason other than laziness in design (or protecting dealership mechanics) why you shouldn't be able to access the back of the lamp shrouds by just lifting the hood.

Overzealous n00b takes out point-of-sale terminals across the UK on a Saturday afternoon


Re: You should have been sacked

Grrr. Your example is something I see *every day*, because so-called 'programmers' stopped bothering to learn how the platform they were writing on actually works and instead rely on their favorite library-of-the-day to just make it all work.

Guess I shouldn't complain too much -- if they'd do it right I'd not have the job -- but there are days I could do with less mess to clean up.

But what do I know. I've only been doing this stuff for going on 30 years. THEY have DEGREES.

Hams try to re-carve the amateur radio spectrum in fight over open or encoded transmissions

Thumb Up

Re: Don't make laws that can't be enforced.

Thank you for offering a valid reason why emergency comms should be encrypted. I've been trying to puzzle out what possible use secrecy in an emergency could have and clearly I'm a bit on the dim side.

Meizu ditched hole-free phone because it was 'just the marketing team messing about', not because no one really gave a toss


Re: Deal...

I used to think this myself, but then discovered that my wife has been video chatting with our 5-year-old niece while away on business trips. Both of them love it.

I have perforce been overruled and all future phones we get will have front-facing cameras.

(Can't say I'm too miffed about it, at least they're not using it for selfies, I suppose.)

Google asked to take down 2.4 MEEELLION URLs under EU law


Re: This protection is good, but...

While you're not wrong, protecting yourself only goes so far. When my idiot brother plonks my personal info all over Facetwit, that's not a mistake I made* but it's still my mess to clean up.

(* it could be argued that it's a mistake my parents made...)

I mean, I'm screwed anyway because I'm in the U.S., but still, it's not quite as black-and-white as all that.

Meltdown, Spectre bug patch slowdown gets real – and what you can do about it


Say you've got yourself a datacenter running multiple VMs for who-knows-how-many clients. How much do you want to bet on all of them being completely perfect in adhering to security protocols?

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019