* Posts by devTrail

231 posts • joined 16 Oct 2018

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Brekkie TV host Lorraine Kelly wins IR35 ruling against HMRC, adds fuel to freelance techies' ire over tax reforms

devTrail

Re: Another point of view

I can remember that when the EU tried to set different standards immediately the UK asked to add the opt out clause. What you miss is not the nature of the changes, but how every change against the US way trend is constantly challenged.

devTrail

Re: Still smells like bullshit

I can bet her paycheck includes the risks, takes into account the overtime and everything else. The trouble is the she is setting the standards for people whose contracts include the same lack of labour rights but no rewards for it.

devTrail

Another point of view

Definitely I don't share El Reg point of view. The IR35 could have been a way to stop the transition going on to the US style system where employers do not have any responsibility and workers absolutely no rights. Reading that Lorraine Kelly ha become an unlikely champion for the UK's freelance techies fells like the usual piece of corporate hypocrisy. I'm aware that contractors have no overtime pay (I'm painfully aware of it), holidays or sickness leave, however fighting the tax office instead of the employers means accepting the situation, keep in mind that a lot of people aren't offered anything else but contractor roles, they don't work as contractors by choice and claiming that the tax office is unfairly pursuing genuine freelancers and contractors means shifting the burden from the employers to the workers.

IBM servers crashed in Q4 – just sales, not the mother of all outages

devTrail

Hardware or software problem?

Maybe IBM would do better if they didn't try to use their machines as a wedge to place their consultants in the data centre.

The days when they were a power able to take over entire data centres are just a memory of the past.

Boeing big cheese repeats pledge of 737 Max software updates following fatal crashes

devTrail

Still glossing over

Some pilots have alleged that original training courses on the 737 Max glossed over what MCAS was and how it worked.

Are the journalists unaware of the details or is Boeing still glossing over?

What kind of patch are they releasing? Making the system easier to disable, more redundant and tolerant to faulty sensors, both, or something else?

How will the additional pilot training work? I guess they can't release new manuals and say that from the next day the planes can fly, pilots will need some time for the extra training. Moreover, if the system is shut down the pilots will have to learn to fly a plane that suddenly has a different balance, will they be able to try it in the simulator?

Boeing... Boeing... Gone: Canada, America finally ground 737 Max jets as they await anti-death-crash software patches

devTrail

Re: Did they try to make the best out of it

BS

Trump owes so much to the corporate media system that brought him to power that he couldn't take this decision, they are just giving him credit. He is just a buffoon or, better say, the president of the galaxy.

devTrail

Did they try to make the best out of it

The way they painted Trump as the one who steps in to finally rein in the company that lobbies to keep the planes flying seems a little bit suspicious.

Are they taking advantage of the situation to prepare the next elections?

Big and Blue: IBM boss's wage package shrinks in 2018 on her own recommendation

devTrail

One missing figure

A number the article did not mention. From 2010, before Rometti took over to 2017 the number of employees shrank from more than 470000 to about 366000.

I don't know the tally in 2018, but they never stopped cutting the workforce.

UK joins growing list of territories to ban Boeing 737 Max flights as firm says patch incoming

devTrail

Re: The reason that the Max series need MCAS

... but in a fit of genius Boeing saw fit to have only two AoA sensors, not three ...

Actually judging from what I read about the Lion Air crash the situation is even worse. One single faulty sensor was enough to cause the accident. Only some comments to some articles mention two sensors and as they are they just seem unconfirmed rumours.

Airlines in Asia, Africa ground Boeing 737 Max 8s after second death crash in four-ish months

devTrail

The first "mistake" Boeing made was building a safety-critical system into the 737MAX without enough sensor redundancy,

I see you pointed out the missing redundancy as well, I didn't see your comment before posting mine.

"Mistake" in inverted commas because it appears that saving/making Boeing more money was the driving factor in both decisions.

One or a sequence of mistakes can still be considered mistakes, with or without commas. But I would really like to know what actions did they take after Lion Air crash, because once you are aware of the mistakes the following actions determine how close you get to negligence.

devTrail

Re: Southwest's position (last November)

I think you are misunderstanding, Southwest's aircraft have always had AoA sensors, ...

I read his comment and nowhere he wrote anything about new sensors, he correctly refers to new indicators. Where is the misunderstanding?

devTrail

Re: Human vs. Machine vs. Software Error

Human vs. Machine vs. Software Error

Such an arguments is too much simplified for the issue. To put it blundly is pointlessly dumb. All these planes are piloted by extremely complex fly by wire systems, the pilots are completely disconnected from the real outputs of the commands and whether the system should or should not overrule the pilot depends on too many variables.

devTrail

Missing redundancy

I always heard that airplanes were safe because of the high level of redundancy in their systems. However everything I read about the Lion Air crash stated that the MCAS was mislead by a single faulty sensor. Am I right? If I'm right how come nobody considered this lack of redundancy a problem serious enough to stop the planes immediately?

SPOILER alert, literally: Intel CPUs afflicted with simple data-spewing spec-exec vulnerability

devTrail

Re: A simple mitigation

Bad news for devs who would then have to develop native code and persuade people to install it.

Are you talking about the classic applications that now developers are asked to code into the browser to save administration costs? Who says that developers would take the news badly? Now they develop in this way because that's what managers ask for and anyway instead of forcing them into a browser there are a lot of different options,

In the enterprise environment that is the most reliant of applications built into the browser now they can let the admins install the applications from remote, administration tools improved dramatically over time. In the mobile environment the app framework does not depend on the browser, now some enterprises apps are migrating to the browser, but they are exposing their customers to a lot of vulnerabilities. In the home PC environment I never saw so many applications built into the browser.

Bad news for services providers who then might have to execute software on their own infrastructure at their own expense, instead of in a user's browser at the user's expense.

Thanks to big data they are putting together so much computing power that it wouldn't make a big change.

But especially bad news for a ton of ad funded data slurping websites.

Unfortunately it's not just for the ads

devTrail

Re: A simple mitigation

I run NoScript and I'm constantly boggled by how many web sites simply won't display anything without JS enabled

I have the same problem. That's why I wrote this comment. All the software proposed to web developers pushes them to take shortcuts and solve every issue with some javascript. The web now depends on Javascript because big companies decided it and even open source developers bought the constant propaganda and aligned themselves to the mainstream approach. A browser that does only the browser for sure would be not appreciated by Facebook, Google, Apple, Microsoft and so on who exploit the complexity to sneak into people machines, but had it a wide enough acceptance it would make our computers way, way safer and more stable.

devTrail

A simple mitigation

The first step to mitigate the issue might be simple. Stop considering the browser an operating system. Restrict Javascript engines and separate the browsers designed to run remote apps from those designed to surf the web.

UK tech has a month left to bare gender pay gaps, but less than a fifth of firms have ponied up

devTrail

divide and rule

This story is being turned into something like minority protections and politically correct in the USA. An issue misrepresented and mishandled on purpose in order to backfire, create resentment, divide and rule.

USB4: Based on Thunderbolt 3. Two times the data rate, at 40Gbps. One fewer space. Zero confusing versions

devTrail

Re: Use Case?

I agree that in many cases you don't need a fast USB, but:

- Linux Virtual machine on an external encrypted drive.

- Transfer data with PCs not connected to the network for security reason.

- When the training data has to be preprocessed several times in different way to run different versions of an experiment and you don't want to clutter the local drive you might be tempted to train your software keeping the data on the external drive, but it might take ages.

IBM so very, very sorry after jobs page casually asks hopefuls: Are you white, black... or yellow?

devTrail

Re: Race Obsessed

and it therefore does not matter how strong are corporate policies and practices put in place to try override this divide

Actually all the policies and all the discussion about political correctness seem so well designed to fuel resentment that I think they are designed to backfire. Divide and rule is always a powerful tool.

devTrail

Re: Aren't we becoming too sensitive to everything???

You didn't think that one day you may apply for a job abroad, once the data has been collected by a company it may end up anywhere in the world, so the data you entered while you were in Brazil might be used somewhere else and the impact might be different.

But the real point is that this information tells absolutely nothing about your skills, there is no point in collecting such data other than profiling people beyond the scope of the advertised job.

devTrail

Re: Better the slur than the hypocrisy

BTW I forgot to add an important detail. No matter all the promises to protect your privacy, often the data you enter when you apply for a job for a big company is leaked to small recruitment agencies. Sometimes the data are passed by too friendly HR employees, but a lot of times it is easier, the small agency outsources the preselection and exploits the chance to gather data.

So, not only you have online application platforms collecting sensible data without any legal constraint, but those data are not even protected as they should be.

devTrail

Re: Better the slur than the hypocrisy

The trouble with those is that people could lie.

No. You are ignoring the pressure on the job seekers. A job applicant of a mixed race might lie, but everything else could be easily noticed at the face to face interview, nobody is going to risk their job application for this.

Even religions that put constraints on what people can do or wear can be difficult to hide.

Most people here really don't care about where your ancestors came from. They don't care about your religion or whether you prefer males or females.

If they have the information written in front of them they might eventually use it especially when they have to compare similar profiles and choose one. If you want to prevent any bias the only way is not collecting such information.

How would I feel working a company where no-deal Brexit is considered a fantastic idea or the NHS is an attack upon morality? Interviews work both ways and I probably would not want the job!

I did it. I once applied for a job with a French company, I was told that before the interview I had to complete an online attitudinal test, after some pages of multiple choices questions I realized they were subtly collecting information on my political leaning, which didn't have anything to do with the role of a software developer. Even the fact that it was financial software requiring strong security didn't justify the intrusion, so I completed the test giving always the same average reply just to get a snapshot of the questions then I wrote them to withdraw my application.

The trouble is that a lot of people don't care and they accept this kind of intrusions on their privacy and on their ideas. Private companies should not be allowed to collect such information.

devTrail

Better the slur than the hypocrisy

At this point I would not be so shocked as the journalist. I was shocked the first time that I applied for a job with an American corporation in London and the procedure asked for my race, pardon ethnicity, in order to protect me against racism. How come nobody sees the appalling hypocrisy?

But what's worse is the fact that this is allowed in Europe, that's a sign that workers right are going down the drain, already in some cases we are on par with the US lack of protections. At least in the EU this should be banned and who cares for the racial slur, that is nothing compared to the shame of a practice that is so widespread that it is considered normal.

LG's new gesture UI for mobes, while technically interesting, is still a little hand-wavy at the mo

devTrail

Gestures

Every time I read about gestures I end up remembering The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:

Now all you have to do is wave your hand ... and hope.

Docker to anoint new CFO this week, lures execs from tech giants amid layoffs, hires

devTrail

Re: And the knock on effect....

Will customers think long and hard about investing in solutions that are only going to be available in docker containers?

Once you defined a deployment with all the external libraries, cluster configurations, jdbc and socket connections to DBs and other services and you eventually defined a complex system with a lot of machines involved, you are reluctant to change everything regardless of whether you are using Dockers or not. I don't think that Dockers itself might be the bigger obstacle to future migrations.

devTrail

Kubernetes

Kubernetes has become the de facto industry standard

Unfortunately.

We'll ask you one more time: Where's our DRAM money?

devTrail

Re: Karma?

If that's true I suspect they won't care about it anyway. They seem ready to cut production and restart the price gouging once again.

SAP plugs IoT into Leonardo toolkit to woo big money industries

devTrail

Is there a practical usecase?

An IoT platform for what kind of devices? What are the possible usecases? As it is presented here it seems a solution looking for a problem.

Now you've read about the bonkers world of Elizabeth Holmes, own some Theranos history: Upstart's IT gear for sale

devTrail

Re: "a person without qualifications.. raise huge sums..inflate..the company up to $9bn"

Sorry, but I don't buy it. I am fully aware that the market valuation was just a bubble as it happens with a lot of companies traded on the stock market right now.

But I still notice that nowhere it is written how much they actually raised and how many people beyond the few famous names fell for the scam.

devTrail

Re: No value left

Moore's law has actually slowed down in the past couple of years. If we are talking about desktops the difference in performance between two/three years old hardware and the current hardware is not so big. Furthermore monitors and other peripherals evolve at a slower pace. So, excluding tablets it's not sure that all the value is lost, but on the other hand by reading all the stories about the company you get the impression that the missing money wasn't spent on hardware.

devTrail

Re: "a person without qualifications.. raise huge sums..inflate..the company up to $9bn"

Wait. Those people were not there because they have no technical background and could be easily fooled. Those people were there because they are famous names and inspire trust. I had a look to the related articles, I could read that some famous people lost some money, but if you sum up the money they lost you get less than $500mn, how come the company was evaluated $9bn? How much did they actually raise? Who are ALL the investors who lost money? These are fundamental details, but wherever you read they have been glossed over.

devTrail

Re: Look who was on the board of directors!

I suspect that the chick image will be exploited to prevent people from noticing that a person without qualifications managed to raise huge sums and inflate the value of the company up to $9bn thanks to her family connections, all those big names do not pop out by chance.

Linus Torvalds pulls pin, tosses in grenade: x86 won, forget about Arm in server CPUs, says Linux kernel supremo

devTrail

Phrases out of context

It seems that they took some phrases and put them out of context to fuel the contest x86 vs ARM.

But whenever the target is powerful enough to support native development, there's a huge pressure to do it that way, because the cross-development model is so relatively painful.

Linus Torvalds is fully aware that native development is a small part of all the development that is going on and the phrase has a limited scope. If you develop on a framework and the framework has been tested on different platforms unless you are shaving the milliseconds to get the highest performance you just deploy on the server that you find available. If you really see a difference in performance or stability you have to ask explicitly to your boss who will also take the budget into account so you have to justify your request.

I think that the x86 vs ARM contest in the near future will somewhat shadow other alternatives like RISCV, PowerPC and so on.

Data breach rumours abound as UK Labour Party locks down access to member databases

devTrail

I can see where this story is leading to

All right here comes my conspiracy theory. First some MPs leave the Labour accusing Corbin of anti-semitism. However people know very well the difeerence between supporting Israeli policies and attitude toward Jews, furthermore Israel is now widely used by western media propaganda as a negative character. They often exploit its image to project a negative image over what is associated with it or with their leaders. So it is clear that those who left the Labour under such ground will not do a big damage to Corbin standing, but why leaving the party now? The timing can only have one explanation, this is a preparation for the final vote on the Brexit (TEMPORARY) deal.

So, what's going to happen? Whatever deal Theresa May might get, it will be eventually voted in, but it will be voted by the unpopular MPs, so the UK will still have some kind of agreement with the EU, but in a way that will fuels resentment. This will make the perfect background for the future negotiations for the permanent deal, forcing the UK as a wedge to open cracks in the common rules has always been the goal and the atmosphere they are creating will be used to drum support towards it.

You can believe what I wrote or not, but one thing is sure, the toxic Brexit campaign won't stop after the end of March. The poison and the news fuelling resentment will still go on for a long time.

The record shows I took the blows, and did it... Huawei: IT titan will start tackling GCHQ security gripes from June

devTrail

Re: I'm still more worried by the USA

The US companies fall all over themselves installing backdoors just to get the lucrative US gov contracts

You're turning a blind eye to the interests they have in Europe. May I remind you about the advance tax ruling in the Netherlands that helped Starbucks avoid a lot of taxes on profits? May I remind you that Apple has a fund in Ireland managing over $120 bn accumulated in many years of friendly advance tax rulings?

devTrail

German attitude

The European Union has been largely indifferent to Western concerns over Huawei, with Germany in particular

It seems that frau Merkel memory is short lived. I hope that at least her security experts after this news will rush to take over her phone.

devTrail

Huawei has promised to start addressing GCHQ security fears

Huawei has promised to start addressing security fears from the country's spy agency, GCHQ, by June

We are jumping out of the frying pan into the fire.

Artificial Intelligence: You know it isn't real, yeah?

devTrail

Re: To be honest...

There is an algorithm. It starts with instructing the computer to look ...

Yes, actually the training procedure is an algorithm. But every time I read an article or someone talking about the issue they always end up talking about the bias in the data, not in the training. Is the way you select the data an algorithm? I thought it was just about collecting all the possible data and then taking some subsamples with random sampling.

I reckon that this is a broad issue and the definition is vague. In some cases it might fit in some cases it might not fit. But still I don't like calling them biased algorithms because it lets me think about flawed procedures.

devTrail

Re: What's worse than the biased algorithm

The same reply I wrote above @Mr Humbug 40 minutes ago is valid for this comment.

devTrail

Re: What's worse than the biased algorithm

Right. You pointed out that I might have a bias as well and this leads to another consideration. If you try to fix the bias in the data chances are that you end up imposing on the outcome the bias of one or few persons over the bias shared by millions of people. So we are back to the thread title.

devTrail

Re: To be honest...

If you really wanted to be fussy you could also point out that and algorithm is a sequence of instructions, the result of a statistical analysis can hardly be defined an algorithm. So the definition of biased algorithms is incorrect.

devTrail

What's worse than the biased algorithm

I remember seeing a talk published online. The female researcher showed the result of a google image search for the word 'doctor'. She said that the google algorithm was biased and complained about it because all the pictures showed male doctors. Trouble is that she was utterly wrong, the problem wasn't the fact that the doctors were male, the real issue was that the doctors were fake, google was just showing a lot of advertising pictures. The funny thing is that the audience applauded, nobody raised questions.

The above is just one of the many examples that show that often the bias of those who judge an algorithm as biased is worse than the bias in the algorithm itself, Except for extreme cases like the American justice system most of the time it's a lot of fuss for small things.

What's the frequency, KeNNeth? Neural nets trained to tune in on radar signals to boost future mobe broadband

devTrail

Re: These energy detectors are not discriminating enough

Just FCC? Who decided to come up with 4G when 3G wasn't fully implemented? Who decided to push 5G so early? Why replace 4G equipment that has been running just for a short time and why upgrading over and over again the equipments in the same spots while the rest of the areas deemed commercially uninteresting are still served by ages old cells?

Telecoms keeps investing only in the main cities, at the same time complaining about investment costs and neglecting rural areas, landlines and broadband cables. But they still want more access to the frequency spectrum increasing their share of a limited resource over and over again.

Eggheads want YOU to name Jupiter's five newly found moons ‒ and yeah, not so fast with Moony McMoonface

devTrail

Re: Shame about the rules

You could get closer, the English translation of the ancient Greek word for destiny is Fate, that fits the rules.

Germany tells America to verpissen off over Huawei 5G cyber-Sicherheitsbedenken

devTrail

Re: I'm not so sure about Huawey

That is a very wide definition that includes the USA first and foremost.

But in the case of 5G networks Huawei is not competing with Cisco, we are not talking just about switches and routers, it is a competition with Nokia (not the part bought by Microsoft) and Ericsson. Definitely from the point of view of transparency and accountability the difference between China and Europe is stark, China is a country with more than one bn people and just one party.

I'll repeat that I don't think that the real issue is government spying, the way the media exploits the negative profiles built around Trump and his aides is driven by the private corporations that own the media and they are the ones we should beware of.

devTrail

I'm not so sure about Huawey

I'm not so sure about Huawey, after all the Americans got to the point that they can only use Trump and his aides as the negative characters that work by the evil prejudice. If Trump or Pence attack a person or a company often the public seeing them as evil tends to favour the opposite side. But Huawei itself is based in a country that does not do a lot of efforts to enforce the laws when the 'friends' are involved. Huawei could be easily bought by one of the corporations worried by the recent efforts of the Germans to rein in tax avoidance.

Autonomy trial: Key HPE witness might not testify, UK High Court told

devTrail

They were pretty incompetent

How can you be so sure? This endless repetition of the concept of incompetence even when multiple CEOs and a huge number of high level manager and experts had a role over a long period of time stinks. Is it really possible all of them were so incompetent? Isn't it possible that the reason might be something worse?

devTrail

HPE muddying the waters, hoping that their gross incompetence will go unnoticed?

I don't think that at such levels, with big teams of specialized people involved, everything can be simply dismissed as incompetence.

Court sees Morissette Meter flip out as Oracle assumes anti-arbitration stance in pay dispute

devTrail

title

What the ... is a Morissette Meter?

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