* Posts by ratfox

3465 posts • joined 3 Sep 2007

Israeli robot trouser snake 'too big' to penetrate backdoors

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Hurk hurk

He said... hurk hurk

Mac OS X haunted by ghost of Jailbreakme bug

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Viruses in Apple

I recently had my MacBook Pro repaired under warranty (hardware problems exclusively). It came back with Symantec Antivirus installed! Who would've thunk it?

By curiosity, I looked at virus definitions:

- 12 Hypercard Viruses

- 34 Macinotsh File Infectors

- 19 Macintosh Trojan Horses

- 2 Macintosh Worms

follow ~6'000 Macro Viruses essentially affecting Microsoft Office software, and ~30'000 PC Viruses.

Rethinking the iPhone

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Exactly my take

In my book, your nerdiness is proportional to the number of devices you have... This reminds me of the comic of Dilbert walking around with a utility belt full of devices, only to be defeated by a guy with a sat dish on his head.

And counting the iPad as "free" because you already have one is disingenuous. Even if you already have one, you will use it more than before, which will at best bring down its battery life, and at worst wear it down sooner.

Hacker sinks Royal Navy website

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Most probably...

To indicate their level of knowledge: ?html - html, what's that? It's one of those PROGRAMMING LANGUAGES, right?

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Oh my

Interesting <centre> element, too... British spelling is not recognized by my Firefox.

$8.9m poker prize up for grabs - humans only please

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Totally ignorant about poker, but...

What is the problem with playing with more than two players?

I assume that good players observe the bids of other players and guesstimate what kind of hand they have... Which changes the odds of their hand being the best one.

Any other ideas?

Google open sources Apache server speed mod

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Black Helicopters

I haven't seen a conspiracy alert yet so...

Are we SURE that Google did not put a backdoor in this code that everybody will install on their server?

Android phone sales up 1,309%

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Infinity %

Last year, that is by how much Android sales went up: Infinity %. From zero to more than zero.

This year, sales of Windows 7 phones will go up by infinity %. with only 1,309%, Android phones are clearly beaten.

@regviewer: learn statistics.

No wonder CompSci grads are unemployed

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@Pawel: read again

He said he saw that 13 years ago, before the kibibyte et al. units were proposed...

Ellison accuses HP boss of espionage

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Paris Hilton

Children in the schoolyard

Did not! Did too!

Wikileaks taunts Pentagon with server mirrors in USA

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Another meaning of puce

In French, puce also means chip, as in chip card (carte à puce), mirochip, etc.

Because on their pins, they look like insects with legs.

Apple to sell 420,000 11.6in MacBook Airs this quarter

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Talking through his head

Watch me, researcher in an investment company, shooting numbers randomly on the dartboard. It's way too early to tell. Some people call that a job.

Hand over illegal porn at the border, please

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More sheep in Australia!

Twice more, in fact.

...of course, per inhabitants, the proportion is reversed...

Man cops to botnet-fueled pump-and-dump scheme

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And it works?

I mean, the efficacy of spam is usually counted in 0.01%, is that enough to have an influence on the market??

Apple leaks 'Back to Mac' goodies

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Bow to Apple

Nevertheless, even if they did not leak the information, the information got out...

I'm in awe. Whether it was on purpose or not, Apple is getting publicity at the smallest flap of a butterfly.

High-speed asteroid pile-up prompts X-File

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Not symmetrical?

"The crisscrossed filaments at the head of the tail suggest that the colliding asteroids were not perfectly symmetrical"

Blimey, they lied to me in Astronomy 101 when they said asteroids were perfect spheres!

Facebook introduces one-time passwords

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This is easy in the US where the person receiving an SMS pays for it, but in the UK, it is usually not the case... Will Facebook really spend money to send SMSs to people whenever they want?

Hefty physicist: Global warming is 'pseudoscientific fraud'

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Who is this guy?

Not that I approve of Climate politics, but who is this guy and why is he worth an article?

He is a retired professor in physics at UCSB, true. But unless his specialty was in climatology, it is likely he has as much to say on the subject as a computer scientist. From what I was able to find, his specialty was advising the government. He does mention in his resignation letter that he joined the APS sixty-seven years ago. So maybe he is some grand researcher in physics, still active in retirement? Does not look like it. His name does not really jump up on the Internet, apart from his resignation letter. No recent articles, no web page, no Wikipedia article.

So this guy just got around to reading the Climategate e-mails, and he was disgusted by what he saw. Well yeah, it is fairly disgusting. But we do not need an old geezer who never researched the subject to tell us that. I understand his anger, I believe he over-estimates Climategate, I may understand that he resigns in protest from the APS.

What I do not understand is why articles are written about him. His move is similar to somebody like Steve Wozniak protesting against the use of 3D in movies.

Asus Eee PC 1215N 12in netbook

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Price, weight, screen size, higher Windows version... Is Asus trying to make more expensive laptops to distinguish it from the iPad?

We had notebooks, subnotebooks, netbooks... This must be a supernetbook!

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Yeah, glossy looks really cool... until you try to see what's on the screen.

Beer for you, my friend

Google robo cars drive selves on public streets

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Americans need cars

They could and should have better standards, but the way their towns are built, they DO need a car to do anything, unless they live in a large city.

Android rebellion: How to tame your stupid smartphone

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Dead Vulture

Calm down, iFanboy...

Really, I believe it is possible to write an article about the problems of Android without such nastiness, and without a somewhat irrelevant apology of the iPhone. True, the Reg spares no one, but this is still severely biased reporting. I do not recall reading such vitriol during the antennaGate thing.

And I say that as a happy iPhone 4 user.

Android phone auto reverts jailbreaks

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People sometimes do want a feature that they will never use...

However, most of the people buying phones have no idea of what an open or close system is.

And they would not choose a car depending on whether they are able to reprogram the sunroof and all windows to open at the same time as their favourite music is playing.

(...wait, this actually sounds cool. Patent that baby!)

Verizon to get iPhone 4-and-a-bit early 2011

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Didn't the persons familiar with the matter already announced the CDMA iPhone for last summer? I am not holding my breath...

Then again, the iPad eventually ended up existing after years of rumours, so...

UK head of online child protection resigns

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I'll drink to that. Good Riddance!

US navy to battle Iranian mini-ekranoplan swarms with rayguns

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Call Blake and Mortimer

They know how to defend the strait of Hormuz

Microsoft secretly scoops up 15 companies

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One of the companies

will be Poly9:


That I know, it has not been announced officially.

Amazon one-upped in RIM tablet ebook duel

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Who and what is a Kobo?

Why did RIM install junk on my tablet? Delete!

Now to install Kindle. Wonder what that Kobo app was for anyway.

Prosecutor resigns over sexting spree to crime victim

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The prize

"I'm the attorney. I have the $350,000 house. I have the six-figure career. You may be the tall, young, hot nymph, but I am the prize."

Well, not an attorney any more, and no six-figure career anymore. Still has the house, though...

Apple now world's second-largest company

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Revenue != market cap

The Fortune Global 500, according to which Apple was 197th last year, ranks companies according to REVENUE, which is the total amount of money people have paid this company. The first one on this list is Wal-mart, with 408G$, and Apple is 197th with 36G$.


It is very different from EARNINGS, which is revenue less expenses. Gazprom is first on that list, with 24G$, and Wal-mart only comes in 9th with 14G$, because it has smaller margins. Apple must be around 70th with 5.7G$, because it has high margins.

Then, you have the MARKET CAPITALIZATION, which is roughly how much the investor think the company is worth. It is rather abstract and depends not only from revenue and earnings, but also of where the company seems to be headed. For instance, Research in Motion has a relatively low market cap, despite the fact that it is still making a lot of money, because investors assume that in 2012, all the smartphones will be iPhones or Androids, and Blackberries will have disappeared. You do not buy a house if you think it will burn tomorrow. Apple has a huge market cap, because investors assume that everybody is going to buy iPhones in the near future.

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Jobs Halo

Not so bad

Companies like Google and Yahoo have a similar P/E.

Compare with Amazon (P/E: 66), or Baidu (P/E: 102)!!

Apple in 873-page legal claim to word 'Pod'

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Hope Apple loses this one

These lawyers are earning too bloody much money as it is.

I thought common words could not get protected?

Sex, lies, and botnets: the saga of Perverted Justice

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People who organize sting

This does nothing to raise my opinion of people who try to entrap others, whatever the crime is.

There is a fine line between trying to catch predators by posing as a victim, and encouraging people to break the law so you can snitch on them.

CIA used 'illegal, inaccurate code to target kill drones'

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Let me see if I got the story straight:

- CIA wants a targeting software as precise as possible, but ended up accepting an imprecision of up to 13 meters, hoping it is precise enough in most case

- Netezza did whatever it could to make the CIA happy, including ripping imperfect code from IISi

- IISi... was not willing to deliver an imperfect solution? Is complaining about the code grab? They are also complaining that the CIA is using a solution that might kill innocents?

I would have thought that the ordinance is powerful enough that 13 meters is an insignificant error... And it is unlikely that the CIA is going to say "OMG we might kill innocent people with such an imprecision, we have to wait until the boffins get it down to 1 meter"

Google whacks Spanish TV station in court

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Good for Google, and for us, but....

"YouTube offers content owners tools to remove copyright infringing content and this means that it is the responsibility of the copyright owner – not YouTube – to identify and tell YouTube when infringing content is on its website"

This argument really is a blanket get-out-of-jail-free card for copyright infringement. The way it sounds, copyright owners apparently have to play whack-a-mole endlessly just to remove content that can be re-uploaded and re-indexed in seconds.

You could practically ignore copyright laws with your website as long as:

1) You offer a way for copyright owners to complain

2) You can claim you did not put it yourself

3) You have "too many users" to control what they upload

Good for us, but I can imagine copyright owners shaking their heads in disbelief.

World's first pedal-powered ornithopter takes flight in Canada

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Bird legs

First, I am not sure how much power bird legs really have... Second, it is their own legs. If they do the same thing with the guy pedaling to turn the wheels instead of being towed, I will have no more objections.

Ten... iPhone 4 accessories

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Mobile stand??

What is the point? Once it is on a stand, using it becomes awkward... Is it not more comfortable in your hands, even while sitting at a desk?

Google data center links shot down by 'bored' riflemen

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Jobs Horns

What will they say

When they find NINJA STARS embedded in the poles?

Police spent tens of thousands on failed BitTorrent probe

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Small potatoes

Really, £29,000 is not much. Compared to other misuses of taxpayers' money by the government, it hardly registers.

Good for him that he was acquitted, though.

Software re-sale restricted by US Court of Appeals

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Why so complicated?

"We hold today that a software user is a licensee rather than an owner of a copy where the copyright owner (1) specifies that the user is granted a license; (2) significantly restricts the user’s ability to transfer the software; and (3) imposes notable use restrictions"

Considering (2) and (3) depend entirely on the copyright owner, why not stop at (1)? Does the copyright owner have to add (2) and (3) to the contract just so that (1) holds?

Is US prudishness ruining the internet?

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Yeah right

Because it is SO hard to find porn on the net, with these damn merkins censoring everything.

If you want a version of Facebook that lets you post nudie pics of yourself, you can find one in 5 seconds flat. Of course, it will not have as many users, but that is because most people do not want to see your nudie pics, and stay on Facebook. And that is true whether on the web or in real life.

You might as well complain that the supermarket wants you to wear clothes. If it let naked people in, they would lose most of their customers.

Netizens now Facebook more than they Google

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How about comparing web page downloads?

Staring at the same page for 5 minutes has less worth than clicking through 10 pages in two minutes, in my book...

Unity – iPhone code swap approved by Jobs (for now)

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letters and/or digits

If the web site is any indication, it does not work well... It's been a while since I saw anything so bad.

... And the "written in SQL" part seems to consist in writing:

SELECT '<html><head><title>Coded in SQL!!</title></head><body>Whole page written in HTML</body></html>'

New 'iPhoD' can 'adjust the speed of light by turning a knob'

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You phail physics phorever

Sorry, (2) was only ever true in space. Light is significantly slower in materials that are transparent but dense, such as water or glass. This is why light refracts when going from one medium to another.

That's how lenses work.

Ex-spook jailed for selling secrets

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Only 12 months??

I'm really surprised here. Ok, so he would not have hurt anybody directly, and anyway he failed. But still, I would have assumed that such a breach of trust would be punished more severely in these circles.

- M doesn't mind you earning a little money on the side, Dryden. She'd just prefer it if it wasn't selling secrets.

- You have the wrong man, Bond. If M was so sure that I was bent, she'd have sent a double-0. Your file shows no kills, and it takes...


Jobs moves to the heavens with Apple TV

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Jobs Halo

Eeeh... Now that I think of it, it does make sense in the long term

As the whole planet becomes wired, any logical observer would laugh at the idea of having millions of copies of the same movies stored all over the place in various formats, when it is much simpler to store them in data centers and stream them... If Apple's timing is correct, they will have a huge role in this. I feel awed, suddenly.

Sooner or later, people who want to have their own physical copy will sound out of touch. On the other hand, it will take a while. I'm not going to get rid of my 300+ books and replace them with eBooks anytime soon. Physical copies are here for at least 30 more years... But maybe not much more.

Cyber-jihadists deface home of teddy bears' picnic

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Welcome to planet earth! This is called catharsis... Recommended by all psychiatrists!

.XXX domain deal stripped bare

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Yeah, great idea

I propose the new TLD .usr, for all websites which have users.

I am the only one who can sell these domain names. Registration is $300, of which $100 will go to user protection organizations. I keep the rest, of course.

Game-addicted man scores rare win over software lawyers

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The judge's argument is IMHO completely valid. The fact that the lawsuit is frivolous is irrelevant. Hopefully, the lawsuit will fail due to hilarity, but the power of EULA will fade...

Microsoft wins wants right to appeal Word patent ruling

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Patent troll

No sympathy for Microsoft, but this patent is ridiculous.

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