* Posts by slartybartfast

70 posts • joined 31 Aug 2018

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Security giants line up behind push to stop stalkerware being used on smartphones

slartybartfast

Re: marketing hype

Recently a tracker blocker I was using on (desktop) Firefox was removed due to it being flagged up for malicious code. I do use some security plugins to block ads, trackers and other things (in addition to the tracker blocker in Firefox) but the irony is it’s hard to completely trust these plugins aren’t up to no good or have been compromised in some way.

Phones and tablets are more at risk because although we can use privacy browsers to (hopefully) block ads and trackers, apps have no privacy settings at all and are totally open to data mining and tracking.

Teachers: Make your pupils' parents buy them an iPad to use at school. Oh and did you pack sunglasses for the Apple-funded jolly?

slartybartfast

Re: Exclusive devices need in Schools

Same for me. We had to use an ink pen. Never used one in my adult life which begs the question: why were we forced to have to buy one to use at school?

slartybartfast

Re: Which Schools?

Maybe it’s to keep everyone within the ecosystem these companies build for themselves...or the blatant sales tactics by Apple.

Ask, Allow or Block is like Vivaldi browser's version of Snog Marry Avoid for popups in 2.9

slartybartfast

Re: No browser based on Chromium can really be trusted to respect your privacy

Edge is now a Chrome clone too. Internet Explorer is pretty much a browser no longer in development.

slartybartfast

Vivaldi is mainly used by disgruntled Opera browser users who love to customise their browser to death. The fact that it runs using the Chrome engine and, so far, has very little in the form of privacy features is enough for me to stick with Firefox. Personally, I don't care if Vivaldi allows the address bar to be placed on any side of the browser (left, right, top, bottom) or has a tab stacking feature. I'm not going to use a browser that exclusively relies on Chrome extensions to add any sort of ad/tracker blocking. In fact I try not to use extensions if I can help it as there's no telling how safe they are to use.

ProtonMail shoves its iOS app's source code on GitHub for world+dog to rummage around in

slartybartfast

I use Protonmail. I switched so I could ditch Gmail and finally go Google-less. Of course Protonmail's security falls flat the moment you send an email without end-to-end encryption, which is pretty much most, if not all of the time. I'm not convinced any web based email service is foolproof and we're in danger of getting into tin foil hat territory. Using your phone/tablet/computer's default mail app/program is merely convenience rather than offering any security.

Not LibreOffice too? Beloved open-source suite latest to fall victim to the curse of Catalina

slartybartfast

Re: Wow

‘I doubt it will considering the hold Apple has on its fans.’

Or people heavily invested in Apple’s ecosystem. Not always easy to switch systems.

slartybartfast

Re: Peak Apple.....

I believe Apple as a company peaked before then. My 2011 MacBook Pro fell foul to the widespread and dreaded GPU failure that Apple staff refused to repair for me unless I coughed up £400 (replacing logicboard, no guarantee the problem won’t return). Since Jobs, of course we’ve been getting less ports, never ending price rises, more and more hardware issues and an OS that is morphing into iOS. Now it seems Apple no longer want things to ‘just work’.

Tinfoil-hat search engine DuckDuckGo gifts more options, dark theme and other toys for the 0.43%

slartybartfast

Re: I'm not surprised

JohnFen, your Android device IS Google.

slartybartfast

Re: Go

Not my experience. I have, on occasion, tried searches in Google and find them to either be about the same or in some cases worse.

Excited about dual-screen laptops? Make your own with duct tape and the ThinkVision M14

slartybartfast

If someone needs a bigger monitor, tablets/laptops should just output to larger monitors. None of this dual screen nonsense. Mobile devices should stay small for obvious reasons but with the option to connect to larger monitors when the user is in a fixed spot like an office or home.

Quick!! The! top! five! things! you! want! to! see! from! Yahoo! – what! are! they!?

slartybartfast

The logo on yahoo’s clickbate news homepage looks terrible and like the sort of logo sites would have used in the late 90’s - maybe yahoo are soon going to unveil a new homepage full of animated gifs ;-). Considering how awful everything on yahoo is and their unacceptable 2-3 year delay in informing their users, in 2016, of several data breaches, which confirmed users details had been stolen, I’m surprised they are still in business.

UK plod could lose access to 79 million criminal alerts in event of a no-deal Brexit

slartybartfast

Re: Hmm

Never ask a Brexiter why leaving is a good idea. Not one (as far as I can tell) has volunteered a sane and coherent answer to that question. We are wasting our time bothering to ask.

As browser rivals block third-party tracking, Google pitches 'Privacy Sandbox' peace plan

slartybartfast

Re: Yeah, pull the other one

If you sign up to Gmail, it forces you to accept two policies that give Google the right to monitor, track and analyse your emails and other activities. I have literally zero confidence in Chrome’s privacy policies if such behaviour is being used in Gmail.

Electric vehicles won't help UK meet emissions targets: Time to get out and walk, warn MPs

slartybartfast

Proper investment in fuelless technology is needed.

What we really need is investment in fuelless engines. Sadly the oil barons of the world don’t like these cost-free to run engines which is why we sadly still use petrol engines over a century after they were invented. Any research into fuelless engines usually gets stopped before the development gets too far. This selfish and greedy attitude is contributing massively to the environmental problems we have.

My MacBook Woe: I got up close and personal with city's snatch'n'dash crooks (aka some bastard stole my laptop)

slartybartfast

Re: That's horrible.

I've often seen Mac laptops with a circle or a fictional logo over the Apple logo. I guess that is when a drama or film doesn't have a product placement deal and doesn't have permission to show any products, so must disguise the logos.

'Hey Google, remind Greg the locks have been changed, and he should find a new place to live. Maybe ask his mistress?'

slartybartfast

Re: Dystopia, one improvement at a time

It would be great if we could dump all smart devices. Problem is, technology is constantly being invented that will rely on them more and more. There's talk of using smartphones in supermarkets to scan and pay for our goods via an app (mainly a cost cutting measure by the supermarkets). I read an article recently that said there are trials of a system that scans your phone when you get on and off a train so that you can be charged for your journey without having to queue for a ticket or scan any ticket barriers. I assume these technologies will be rife with data mining too. Sounds dreadful but I could foresee a time when non-smartphones are made obsolete and we're all forced to have a smartphone.

Let's see what the sweet, kind, new Microsoft that everyone loves is up to. Ah yes, forcing more Office home users into annual subscriptions

slartybartfast

Re: What home users actually need this?

I keep records of all my self employed earnings in a handy LibreOffice spreadsheet. Back in the day, I even used it to write a college dissertation, with an updatable contents using styles (can’t for the life of me remember how I did it though). I pretty much ditched M$ Office when Open Office became a viable option - now using LibreOffice, of course.

slartybartfast

So for home users, pay the annual fee, either upgrade (complete with bugs no doubt) when a new version is available or continue with the same version you’re using whilst still paying the annual fee until M$ discontinue it and force you to upgrade. Win win for M$. No thanks, I’ll stick with LibreOffice.

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

slartybartfast

Re: Galaxy Note7 anyone?

I had a 2011 MacBook Pro that suffered the notorious GPU failure. Never got it fixed. Apple wanted to charge me £400 to replace the logicboard which wouldn’t eliminate the GPU problem and also helpfully suggested I ‘would be better off buying a new laptop’. Seems Mac laptop problems have been happening before 2015.

In Rust we trust: Brave smashes speed limit after rewriting ad-block engine in super-lang

slartybartfast

Re: When is someone going to come up with a stealth ad. blocker?...

The site independent.co.uk now refuses to let you use it with an ad blocker installed. Once you disable your blocker, it bombards you with a tonne of ads, including large ones down both the left and right edges. I did figure out using Firefox’s tracker blocker, whilst whitelisting the site in the ad blocker plugin I’m using stops the ads showing. No such luck with Opera though.

Good news! We may be past peak Windows 10 October 2018 Update

slartybartfast

I'm also running Win 10 on an old laptop. It did take many failed attempts to upgrade and also had to roll back to an earlier disk image several times. What is surprising, I was never able to stream HD video before (Win 7) as playback would just stutter but have had no problems since the update. Having said that, I'm not a complete fan of Win 10, I hate the whole tiles and apps concept, for example. For a number of months I couldn't use the search bar or reboot properly as they would both crash the machine. Most 'fixes' (read: guesses) found online involved some deep level tinkering with the warning it could bugger up my laptop :-( . I think a couple of recent Windows updates seems to have fixed those issues thankfully as I was just learning, with regret, to live with them.

It's all in the wrist: Your fitness tracker could be as much about data warfare as your welfare

slartybartfast

Step monitors are misleading anyway. You need to do at least ten minutes of brisk walking that gets your heart rate going and makes you sweat for it to be any benefit. People using these trackers to monitor themselves walking around their house are simply not getting adequate exercise and allowing the data to be harvested for nothing. Best thing to do is ditch the data harvesting tracker and aim to get more brisk walking exercise in.

slartybartfast

Re: No, no, no, no, no!

Whilst a bit more of a faff, an hdmi cable from my computer to my TV serves all of my online TV viewing needs. Irony, of course, all the services I’ve signed up to are tracking me. At least the TV isn’t reporting all of my viewing habits though.

Brave urges UK's data watchdog to join Ireland in probing claim Google adtech breaches GDPR

slartybartfast

Taking on Google? That’s Brave of them.

i wouldn’t put it past Google to have broken the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation. I imagine, like the Cambridge Analytica scandal, it will be quietly brushed under the carpet whilst people are distracted by some other news. Isn’t that how it usually works?

Microsoft's Edge gang pops a head above the parapet to give Linux fans a strong 'maybe'

slartybartfast

Re: Edge - Why?

‘If you really care, I suspect you'll be using Firefox or Opera anyway.’

Surely you are aware Opera is a Chrome based browser. Firefox is pretty much the only major browser not to use the Chrome engine.

Like using the latest version of Microsoft Office? Love Offline Files? Not for long!

slartybartfast

Re: Your files

M$ for years have tried to dominate markets and force users into doing things their way (IE6 anyone?). This is one reason we still have to put up with the Office document formats. It becomes a problem if there are no viable alternatives as this means people will be forced into accepting this online only b***sh**. Same goes for Adobe. LibreOffice is a good enough alternative for many but MS still is king as LibreOffice can't touch it for it's advanced features that lots of businesses rely on.

slartybartfast

Not so long ago there was a discussion about Adobe's cloud service and plenty of people were defending it over offline, external storage. Seriously, anything and everything stored online can be hacked. The dark web buys and sells lots of our personal data (which means all of our subscription accounts aren't safe). Yes, external storage can be stolen, disks corrupted, destroyed in a fire and so on but the risk of a cloud server being hacked from any corner of the world is so much more likely than a break in at my house by a top techie criminal gang, ready to sell the data they find on the dark web.

Still sniggering at that $999 monitor stand? Apple just got serious about the enterprise

slartybartfast

Re: 6 grand

6 grand for a computer that will be used in high end video/graphics production (likely by Hollywood film companies), not by the average small time freelancer. You don’t sound like the Mac Pro’s target customer so complaining about the price is pointless.

slartybartfast

Re: No, not really, they didn't.

It’s standard to work on a lower res monitor when editing video as it’s common practice to edit with low-res files and then output to the final hi-res format (and hand over to the colour grader) when you’re done. There are a number of widescreen monitors that would also be very useful for this.

slartybartfast

Re: ¯\_(; º _ º )_/¯

They’ll sell you a $500 adapter to make it work with their next monitor ;-) .

slartybartfast

Re: ugh

Linux user? Linux doesn’t run industry standard software and is mostly an OS for free open source PC geeks. It’s not a case for me of ‘no thanks’ but ‘not an option’.

slartybartfast

Re: Yuk

I have coped well with searching the internet for problems I’ve had on the Mac without the need to call technical support. The Windows 10 laptop I’ve been using results in a mixed bag when looking for internet solutions. That being said I’ve never used Windows without being accompanied by a barrage of issues. Some solutions solvable but a few not so. Some ‘solutions’ require delving deep into the PC and deleting potentially vital files that might screw up the system - and those are simply guesses at fixing the problem. I’ve never had to re-install macOS but have re-installed Windows countless times when something has screwed up (and not always through me being a clueless idiot).

Apple strips clips of WWDC devs booing that $999 monitor stand from the web using copyright claims. Fear not, you can listen again here...

slartybartfast

It’s a pony up optional extra.

slartybartfast

Re: No one has to buy it

‘it's not like it's a mass market consumer product, is it?’

It is a silly price but you’re right about it not being a mass market consumer product. I expect the majority of people complaining across social media are either Apple haters looking for any excuse or consumers who simply aren’t the target market for the Mac Pro.

slartybartfast

I generally find the Apple OS runs much more smoothly than Win 10. Less maintenance is needed to keep it free of crap. No need for half as many third party software to do simple tasks. The main problem Apple have is their many hardware issues they’ve had over the post-Steve Jobs years and their reluctance to fix (seeings as it’s their fault) without charging silly money. Also their products have been getting increasingly more expensive. I owned a MacBook Pro back in the day that cost me £1400. The equivalent model today starts at £2000. £1400 buys you a pretty average performing Mac laptop now.

slartybartfast

Re: Palpatine

Btw. I’m no fanboy. I’ve used both OS’s. Upgraded a laptop to Win 10 that was a seriously painful experience and it feels like MS are going backwards.

slartybartfast

Re: Palpatine

Apple hardware might be very expensive but the only other realistic choice is to buy a PC with Windows 10. Windows 10 is simply awful to use and I’ve seen plenty of videos and comments from PC technicians and other professional users who back this up.

Microsoft Bing is 10: That thing you accidentally use to search for Chrome? Still alive and kicking

slartybartfast

Pinterest can f*** right off!

Whatever search engine is used, what is most annoying when doing image searches is the sheer number of images that are linked to that irritating site Pinterest. Pinterest simply attaches images from other sites to its own and denies you access to the original site unless you subscribe to Pinterest. So many image searches have many images linked to that horrid site. Why is that abomination allowed to dominate image searches like this?

slartybartfast

Re: DuckDuckGo

I mainly use DuckDuckGo and occasionally Bing as DuckDuckGo doesn’t always give the best search results.

slartybartfast

Re: I just did a clean Win10 install...

I’ve lost count of all the third party software I’ve installed that either recommends I install Chrome or cheekily has a tiny check box that can someone might not see and installs Chrome as well as the software I actually want. I double check now for the annoying check box. I don’t use Chrome and object to companies who are paid to try to get me to install it.

LibreOffice 6.3 hits beta, with built-in redaction tool for sharing those █████ documents

slartybartfast

Any poor students working on their dissertations should give LibreOffice a go. I managed, a long time ago, to figure out the formatting and even created an automatically updating contents. Bit of a faff but the money saved not buying MS Office (especially on Mac) was well worth it. I’ve never used any other office product since as it handles all my requirements. It would be nice if MS Office had more .odf compatibility but we know Microsoft would rather all their formats were the standard (IE6 springs to mind!).

Uber JUMPs at chance to dump load of electric bikes across Islington

slartybartfast

Re: Weird pricing model

A win-win pricing model for UBER. They can charge £25 more for 'crap parking' and the customer has little way of challenging this charge if they think it's unfair.

Also, I can get to my friends house in South London by Tube and Overground if I avoid zone 1 for £1.50 each way. No surprise £25 charge for 'crap parking'.

slartybartfast

Re: Isn't that a bit of a fail?

And UBER have the customer's credit card details, if they fancy blaming them for the stolen bike.

slartybartfast

Re: What if...

Yep, you've got to love this UBER account way of paying to travel. They have your card details and make it very hard for the customer to challenge if they think they've been unfairly charged for 'crap parking'. What's to stop some dick moving the bike once the customer has parked it in the correct way? It would be so much easier (and probably cheaper) just to order an UBER cab. Unfortunately for UBER it does mean paying a cab driver and no fine for 'crap parking'.

Headsup for those managing Windows 10 boxen: Microsoft has tweaked patching rules

slartybartfast

Re: "feature and quality updates"

After finally getting a laptop to successfully update from Win7 to Win10 earlier this year (many aborted attempts, crashes, freezing, rolling back to Win 7), I managed to find a fix to stop it freezing when shutting down but have never found a successful fix to stop it freezing when rebooting or installing updates and shutting down. Most of them I couldn't understand and came with warnings they could erase vital files. I love you Windows!

iPhone gyroscopes, of all things, can uniquely ID handsets on anything earlier than iOS 12.2

slartybartfast

Re: People are just too goddamn smart.

Forced, as in the growth in technology that relies more and more on mobile apps and services, deals that make it more cost effective to have a mobile data plan as your primary internet access (no need for a home based hub) and people who need instant access to the internet for their job. Just an ever increasing world that relies more and more on mobile technology each year.

slartybartfast

Re: People are just too goddamn smart.

You think a smartphone is a 'nice thing'? To me it's a (forced upon us) necessary evil. ;-)

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