* Posts by ratfox

3466 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007

US bitcoin bomb threat ransom scam looks like a hoax say FBI, cops

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Disagree. Terrorists use random attacks to make the whole population fear they could get attacked at any time. The goal is to spread terror and influence the public opinion though intimidation. Unless there is this element of influencing a larger amount of people, it's not terrorism. That's why terrorists don't generally announce specific targets, because it removes the fear that anybody could get attacked at any time.

Making threats and demanding money is just extortion.

Google CEO tells US Congress Chocolate Factory will unleash Dragonfly in China

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I'm surprised nobody asked about the Maven project. Some people seemed especially riled that Google was considering censoring results in China after refusing to develop AI for US drones.

Waymo presents ChauffeurNet, a neural net designed to copy human driving

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Re: I would dare Waymo

an artificial driver is no damn use if it can't do everything I can do, better.

That's a bit of a high bar. There's practically no machine anywhere that can do everything better than a human, yet we still use a shitload of machines.

You're legit and you know you are... Thanks to chanting racist footie fans, linking to dodgy stuff isn't necessarily illegal (well, in Europe)

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Paris Hilton

But what about memes? Can we still post memes?

It's interesting to see fairly important rules being decided to resolve case after case. Right now, it does feel like a lot is still undecided and constantly changing.

I would hope that in time, you could say with certainty that this or that is legal, but I'm not holding my breath.

PH icon, because it is a public figure whose representation is used for satirical purposes in this context, and therefore allowed under ruling 78290-λ of the ECJ. Or something.

Falcon 9 gets its feet wet as SpaceX notch up two more launch successes

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How do you launch 64 satellites from a single rocket?

Do they go one by one? Is there an automated robotic arm to take them out, so they can fire themselves in the right orbit? How much time does the process take?

I hoped there would be a video somewhere, but I can only find rockets taking off.

Do not adjust your set: Hats off to Apple, you struggle to shift iPhones 'cos you're oddly ethical

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Re: Have to agree....

I started with bluetooth earbuds a couple of weeks ago; I have to say it's easier to get used to it than I thought it would be. Because of the lack of long wires, it's much simpler to carry them around wherever you go. When I forget to charge them, I'll probably curse the world for the rest of the day, but so far I don't miss the wires.

The only issue I can see is that wireless headphones are so convenient that a lot more people isolate themselves from the world while commuting or having coffee. I'll quote the mandatory relevant XKCD

Awkward... Revealed Facebook emails show plans for data slurping, selling access to addicts' info, crafty PR spinning

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Re: Yes, they really seized them

I did think while reading the article that this data dump would probably not displease Six4Three.

It was probably strictly forbidden for them to just disclose the data themselves. However, they might have let slip that their exec would have the data with him while traveling to the UK. Then of course, if the data was seized, there's nothing they could do prevent it, right?

After all, nobody would dream of taking to the US a laptop full of data known to be of interest to the US government... Unless they wanted the US government to have it.

Consumer group attempts to lob Safari workaround sueball at Google... again

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Re: another daily dose

I get the "unless absolutely needed" for Google; they are dominant in a lot of things, and where alternatives exist, they often come with issues of their own.

But Facebook? Why would you absolutely need to use Facebook?

YouTube fight gets dirty: Kids urged to pester parents over Article 13

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Re: Isn't it bad?

The funny part is that half of comments complain that YouTube will have to close down, and the other half says that's a good thing.

Apple in another dust-up with its fans: iMacs, MacBooks lack filters, choke on grime – lawsuit

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Paris Hilton

Instead, Apple tells customers that they must replace the entire screen, at a cost exceeding $600, apparently in order to increase Apple’s profits at the expense of the customer



I agree that's probably more or less what they do (with the caveat that maybe sometimes the cheap fix would not work), but then what? They are treating customers like cash cows? Yeah, they are. You think it's scummy? Be my guest. But suing a company for doing that feels daft. Have they considered suing luxury brands for selling items at ten times the cost of production?

Interest in Kubernetes, chip design coding, Go soars among tech job seekers and employers

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Angry Googlers demand bosses pull the wings off 'Dragonfly' censored Chinese search engine

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Re: Nice to know that everything is okay....

It's no use to try being anonymous, amanfrommars. We all know it's you.

Apple heading for Supreme Court showdown over iOS App Store 'monopoly' gripe

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I use Apple devices precisely because you can only buy from one place and you know the apps will work.

Sure. But why do you have to pay 30% extra for that?

The problem is the markup. It might be convenient to you that there is only one place you can buy from, but from a different viewpoint, it's also a very convenient way for Apple to force people to overpay.

Other app stores have started reducing their markups for some of their inventory, and the fact that Apple hasn't done the same does hint that users are paying more than they have to.

Consultant misreads advice, ends up on a 200km journey to the Exchange expert

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Re: Spoilers in Tech Docs!

The GUI should be a metaphor for the physical world.

I strenuously object.

Maybe people thought that skeuomorphic design was a good idea when computers were new and users were terrified of using new concepts. But by now, imitating the physical world is more a limitation than anything.

Though I do agree that we need a better word than click, if only because nowadays people mostly tap.

Laptop search unravels scheme to fake death for insurance cash

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Bypassing warrant rules

The fake death story is funny and all, yes. But what's more interesting to me is this:

The feds apparently used the fact that border agents can search laptops without a warrant to fish for evidence.

While you are in the US, the police generally need a warrant to search for your things. At the border, border agents apparently can do whatever they want, even if it is completely unrelated to assessing whether you are entering the country legally or not.

Talk in Trump's tweets tells whether tale is true: Code can mostly spot Prez lies from wording

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Re: Accuracy

It's not very useful to claim "73 per cent accurate". What they should give is a percentage of false positives and false negatives.

Is Google's Pixel getting better, or just more expensive?

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"We're so sorry third-party apps don't work with our hardware, you'll have to use our app"

I'm surprised nobody seems to find this suspicious. If this was Apple, it would be the first reaction. Then again, Apple has a long history in this respect.

Facebook to appeal against ICO fine – says it's a matter of principle not to pay 18 mins' profit

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Re: "it's a matter of principle"

Precisely: from their point of view, they did nothing wrong that they should apologize for — not to the UK. It's like somebody coming up to you saying: I saw you being rude to that other guy, now pay me £10.

Holy moley! The amp, kelvin and kilogram will never be the same again

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Re: A mole of X

I didn't get that part. I thought that the Avogadro number was already the definition of a mole. What was it before?

Sorry, Mr Zuckerberg isn't in London that day. Or that one. Nope. I'd give up if I were you

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You guys ain't cool enough for the Zuck.

Oracle's JEDI mind-meld doesn't work on Uncle Sam's auditors: These are not the govt droids you are looking for

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More probably: "We don't know and we don't care"

YouTube supremo says vid-streaming-slash-piracy giant can't afford EU's copyright overhaul

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I feel a proper analogy should reflect the fact that the more they try to catch pirates, the more they are going to annoy innocent users with false positives.

UK.gov fishes for likes as it prepares to go solo on digital sales tax

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Paris Hilton

The government makes a stab at defining each of the three groups – social media platforms, online marketplaces and search engines – it is seeking to tax

Isn't it simpler to just say they want to tax Facebook, Amazon and Google?

Two fool for school: Headmaster, vice principal busted for mining crypto-coins in dorms, classrooms

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Re: 2K in bills

I read that the current Bitcoin price of $6000 is just above the average cost to mine one.

Of course, that depends a lot on how much you pay for electricity. The fact that miners are agressively looking into places where power is cheap is a pretty solid hint that they don't get a huge margin.

European Union divided over tax on digital tech giants as some member states refuse free money

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As far as I understand, services such as those sold by Google and Facebook (though not Amazon) are zero-rated. If some French company pays Facebook Ireland for an ad, Facebook does not charge for VAT at all, and the French company pays the French VAT rate to France.

Dutch cops hope to cuff 'hundreds' of suspects after snatching server, snooping on 250,000+ encrypted chat texts

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Black Helicopters

Looks like the plod should directly create the "secure" chat systems themselves, and advertise it to criminals.

Maybe they did already!

Has science gone too far? Now boffins dream of shining gigantic laser pointer into space to get aliens' attention

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Humans! Please don't send us any more unsolicited nude pics with instructions on how to get to your house. It's creepy.


The Aliens.

Google: All right, screw it, from this Christmas, Chrome will block ALL adverts on dodgy sites

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Paris Hilton

Re: Still worse than an ad blocker (by design)

I much preferred the internet back when websites either ran off donations or where the person running the website accepted that their hobby was going to cost them money [...] Websites had a value then [...] none of the shit we see today. Ads are not keeping sites free to view because those sites could never survive as pay to view because people wouldn't pay, they would find something else to do.

You realize you are writing this on a website which is kept alive by ads, right?

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Re: Eliminate the competition

Yeah, I'm thinking that they have balls of steel to make that move when they seem to have such an obvious conflict of interest. It probably feels insignificant to them, but I hope their lawyers are ready for the lawsuits.

Supreme Court tells Big Cable to shut up for once: Net neutrality challenge shot down

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Beer enthusiast

Now that's an epithet I can agree with. Good job!

Tata on trial: Outsourcer 'discriminated' against non-Asian workers, claim American staff

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Hmmm... It's not like Indian IT workers are rare; on the top of my head the CEO of Google and Microsoft both come from India, and they have a significant number of Indian employees as well...

But to get numbers like those of Tata? It's hard to say that's random. I'm sure that Indians are way more likely than Americans to seek employment with Tata, There's only so much that you can explain by Americans refusing to apply. Is it allowed to only advertise for jobs in India?

Android fans get fat November security patch bundle – if the networks or mobe makers are kind enough to let 'em have it

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Apple, a phone and watch seller known to dabble in personal computers every couple years

Nice one

DBA drifts into legend after inventive server convo leaves colleagues fearing for their lives

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Ctrl+Alt+Del works immediately

This revolution will not be televised – but it will be sanctioned: Googlers walk out over 'sex pest' executive scandals

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Re: Which is worse?

I guess the novelty lighter is somewhat similar to having a Playboy centerfold taped next to your desk. Technically, it's not hurting anybody, yet in many corporate culture it's obviously inappropriate, and you shouldn't even need somebody to explicitly complain about it to know that.

Supreme Court raises eyebrows at Google's cozy $8.5m legal deal

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Re: Original judge

If the damages were only $0.04/person, then lawyers should make no more than what each damaged person did.

The problem is that in that case, there's going to be no lawyer who will work on such a lawsuit.

The entire point of class action lawsuits like this one is to hold companies accountable for misdoings that are a relatively small inconvenience to a large amount of people. Without this system, there is nothing stopping the large corporations from polluting quality of life at a global level, because it is not worth it for any single individual to raise the issue.

The point is making the guilty party pay an amount proportional to the total damage they have done, to deter them from doing it again. Compensating the class members is purely secondary.

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Re: @El Reg Your ANTIFA t-shirt is showing...

I'm not going to go into whether Kavanaugh lied or not, but it was indeed entirely irrelevant to the rest of the article and felt out of place.

'Privacy is a human right': Big cheese Sat-Nad lays out Microsoft's stall at Future Decoded

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"Privacy is a human right"

Hmmm... I anticipate this can and will be used against Microsoft.

This one weird trick turns your Google Home Hub into a doorstop

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Re: chromecast based

The Chromecast allows anybody who is on the same wifi network to give it orders. If you give your wifi password to guests, they can set what music is playing.

For a Chromecast, it's a feature. For a home hub?

EU Android latest: Critics diss Google's money-spinning 'cure'

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Re: Monopolist Often Don't...

MS makes profits selling things to users, and that's a consistently good business model.

I think you mean, MS makes profits selling things to businesses. This is the area where they have a huge advantage over Google, whose business offerings are often lacking.

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Logically, considering how cutthroat the competition is between phone makers, this might well have been reflected on the price of the phones. So you can send Google a thank you note for your phones having been cheaper than iPhones.

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That I understand, the original finding was that Google had abused of their power over the Play store to force makers put Chrome on every mobile phone. And now, according to this lawyer, they are abusing of their power to charge money.

I suppose that if the EU agree, they could simply order Google to distribute all their apps free, separately and without conditions.

New Forum Wishlist - but read roadmap first

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I understand that there's no icons on the mobile version of the website, and apparently no way to edit posts either. I understand that it's tricky to do these things right and it may be a lot of work to just port a feature from the desktop to the mobile version.

What I don't understand is why requesting the desktop version on my mobile phone does not simply give me the desktop version. There are sometimes technical reasons why a desktop version would not work on a mobile phone, such as using Flash or WebGL, but surely that's not the case here?

Beer icon, because I can.

Amazon's neural net offer to border cops, Waymo charges fares, the first AI portrait sold at auction, and more

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matched them against a list of innocent US congress members.

- Now that's an oxymoron

- I think you mean alleged innocent


- Trust the AI, throw them in jail just to be sure

Etc. etc.

Official: IBM to gobble Red Hat for $34bn – yes, the enterprise Linux biz

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$34B? I was going to say this is the biggest tech acquisition ever, but it's second after Dell buying EMC. I'm not too sure what IBM is going to do with that, but congrats to whoever is getting the money...

Florida man won't be compelled to reveal iPhone passcode, yet

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What could possibly be the file that they want to access so much, and why is it relevant to a car accident?

'BMW, Airbus and Siemens' get the Brexit spending shakes

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To be fair, if the separation goes on well, all this delayed spending will go down at the same time, bringing an excellent year.

If the separation goes badly, of course it's another thing...

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Re: BMW and Airbus have more to worry about...

I doubt that European countries are going to kick out British citizens. However, I wouldn't be surprised if UK kicked out EU citizens. That I understand, they've already started sending nasty letters to warn them they may be losing their right to reside in the UK.

If you saw a Google ad recently, know that it helped pay off one of its 'sex pest' execs $90m

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Re: different rules

SHE gets screwed and HE gets the pay off

She got screwed and he got fired. The $90 millions was just the payment required to make him leave quietly without the $150 millions he had expected to receive over the next few years.

Science: Broke brats glued to the web while silk-stocking scions have better things to do

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Re: Buzzwords...

Generation poop emoji

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