* Posts by Bronek Kozicki

2538 posts • joined 6 Sep 2007

'It's full of beer!' Miracle fridge reveals itself to pals tuckered out from cleaning flooded cabin

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: <Evil Grin>

been through that. Actually, I add coffee cold turkey (for one day only!) to the jet lag, and the relief on the second day is good enough to kill the jet lag much faster than it would normally go.

Formulus Black – the artist formerly known as Symbolic IO – trumpets its new breed of dedupe

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Yet another RAM compression technology

These appear since the times of MS-DOS each one selling one and the same, quite stale by now, snake oil. Well I guess there must be some use for it, otherwise the idea would have died already. Or is it the combination of uneducated investors + slick marketing, up to the same old trick?

My Lambda Custom Runtimes bring all the .NET Core to the yard, and they're like... where is this headline going?

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Lambdas are interesting

It is worth pointing at AWS firecracker as the underlying (and open source) technology, and it is pretty cool as the minimalistic VM. Closer to the subject, AWS lambda for .NET core is also open source

Yes! Pack your bags! Blossoming planetary system strikingly similar to ours found by boffins

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Joke

Few millions years old?

That's still a newborn (star), get your hands of it, you cradle snatcher!

Open-source 64-ish-bit serial number gen snafu sparks TLS security cert revoke runaround

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Trollface

Whoahaha

Another proof that Java programmers do not understand unsigned numbers.

Swiss electronic voting system like... wait for it, wait for it... Swiss cheese: Hole found amid public source code audit

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Say what you will

... but the Swiss are taking their voting seriously. At least they are trying to find and fix the problems, unlike many others.

Resistance is... new style: Samsung says it's now shipping resistive eMRAM for IoT chips

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Re: Rather useless without a different operating system approach

Well, I guess you want your file system to be random access, with allocation before write, release when done etc. Do lookup NVDIMM.

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

The only bad thing ...

... is that we will not know actual latency, throughput and power figures until, well, I don't know. At this moment I am *very* cautiously optimistic. We need something like this.

'Java 9, it did break some things,' Oracle bod admits to devs still clinging to version 8

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Java, meet Python

Another language with codebase bifurcated into two major, and mutually incompatible, versions.

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

I haven't used Eclipse for years; maybe it is time for you to try IntelliJ ?

(just being smart-ass, sorry)

Nice 'AI solution' you've bought yourself there. Not deploying it direct to users, right? Here's why maybe you shouldn't

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: "No one really understands why machine-learning code is so brittle"

Another good point. A well-presented ML will typically return a prediction, which is interpreted as probability value. If the value is exactly 0 or 1 then either the model is broken or rounding error got in the way. Typically, for a great quality model and where the match is perfect, the value might be up to 0.97, perhaps 0.98. It is up to humans to actually read this value and think "hmm, this could be something else with 3% probability".

But then, humans just love survivor bias : if the ML was right more than 10 times in a row we stop paying attention and replace thinking with generalisation. It is good thing that some researchers are actually pushing the probability value closer to 1, but we also need to start paying attention. Because it will never be 1 and yet it will be frequently interpreted as such.

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: "No one really understands why machine-learning code is so brittle"

I think the premise above in false. Everyone who worked on this for a little will understand pretty well why machine learning models are so brittle. They are nothing else but heuristics trained to recognize a particular correlation. The meaning of heuristic is pretty clear. The correlation is also a hint although more subtle - the fact that something "looks like" a bottle only means that there is a strong correlation between a particular set of pixels and a "bottle" label, nothing else (in particular, it does not mean that the pixels actually show a bottle).

How that correlation was arrived at? By some heuristics. How does that heuristics work, actually? Whoa, back off, we just threw lots of data at it and some got stuck. How did we arrive at the situation where ML is treated as an oracle? A friend pointed at this recently http://backreaction.blogspot.com/2019/03/merchants-of-hype.html

Did you know?! Ghidra, the NSA's open-sourced decompiler toolkit, is ancient Norse for 'No backdoors, we swear!'

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: why on Earth give this away for free to everyone on the planet

Actually I think "Perhaps the NSA's enemies are assumed to have better or similar tools" pretty much this.

Official science: Massive asteroids are so difficult to destroy, Bruce Willis wouldn't stand a chance

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Actually, we are looking at the collision of two asteroids, and the bits which coalesce are the larger asteroid pulling itself back together (literally, by gravitational force) after the collision. Which means that if we tried to break apart a large asteroid on a collision course with Earth, this is likely to happen with the asteroid, if left for sufficient time.

UK banking was struck by one IT fail every day for most of 2018

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Re: It's epidemic

They are normal in the UK bank sector :-( And they will stay normal until the regulators force banks to improve, rapidly.

No, really.

Basically what we are seeing is the inability of bank management to manage the technological risks properly.

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

"The cloud"

Funny thing, there is one bank on the list which is running its systems exclusively "in the cloud". It is Starling, and the number of failures is exactly zero.

Wanted: DVLA CTO. Must love cloud, open standards, agile – and retiring outdated kit

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Joke

Re: $156k US dollars

... or they just can't be bothered to move out of Wales.

US Supremes urged by pretty much everyone in software dev to probe Oracle's 'disastrous' Java API copyright win

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Re: @Someone Else. A Question:

@Ian Michael Gumby

Either you do not understand how the law works in large parts of the world (including the US) or I somehow missed that this decision would not set a precedent. In case this is the latter, please kindly show the source.

In case there is a precedent, the decision basically means that whoever first grabs copyright for a function name and signature will be able to prevent everyone else from using the same name and signature in their own code. Which is very bad news for developers, because there are only so many sensible names and signatures (as well as code idioms and design patterns) which we can use to solve a common reappearing problem. It also makes it very difficult for developers to change jobs or contribute to open source projects because anything we have done in the past becomes huge legal liability.

OK, team, we've got the big demo tomorrow and we're feeling confident. Let's reboot the servers

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: Infrastructure

One might have hoped that principles of chaos engineering were applied, to ensure soft fail and quick recovery. One would be wrong.

Black-hat sextortionists required: Competitive salary and dental plan

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

I receive those every day. Actually few every day, if I bother to look into spam folder - and if not, they help my email hosting to improve spam filters.

Not an anon because there is nothing to be ashamed of since the "facts stated" are obviously entirely made up. Sometimes I am tempted to try to hack these back (tracing bitcoin wallet activity is plausible, there might be also interesting traces in email header) but can't be bothered. Someone will, eventually.

Dratted hipster UX designers stole my corporate app

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Pint

Re: Terminal Beach

Cool story. Reminds me of writing Motif code under Windows 3.1 because that's what Bentley Systems Microstation used. I learned a thing or two back then, and never got to use that particular skill again because it was decided we should use the newly fangled MFC from Microsoft for everything else. Which nearly turned me away from programming, but that's another story.

Head of Apple's insider trading program charged with… you guessed it... insider trading

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Trollface

Perhaps he thought ...

... that his duties only include enforcing the rules, not following them. After all, he was in management.

Never mind that naked selfie scandal... Brazil lights the, er, kindling, dot-Amazon saga roars back into life

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: All a load of bollocks

The rules for trademark registration mean that they have to make every effort to protect it. But I guess they would be happier to have lost the case because that's the only situation when they can legally "let it go" and stop this PR nightmare.

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: All a load of bollocks

I think that this not something Bezos can "let it go". Not without firing all the lawyers in the IP department and risking the wrath of SEC. The shareholders need Amazon to be protected trademark, and the necessary component for that is registering all the relevant DNS names. The new TLDs are just a money grab from ICANN because they knew exactly that this would happen, for the reasons set above.

Google's cash problem: There's just so much of it

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Windows

Re: I still don't understand...

The attraction is in the lower running cost if you know how to manage it. Here is an example: I am running a few websites (as a hobby, there is only "cost" side and exactly zero revenue from that, not even ads). These websites are not on my home internet connections since that would subject them to the vagaries of Openreach infrastructure (even AA ISP cannot guarantee 100% connection uptime, especially if there is no redundancy). So instead I pay for a virtual machine in some datacentre, where these websites are hosted, and that's one attraction of the cloud. The other is that I do not actually have to pay for a whole virtual machine if I've spent a little time to re-architect these websites - I could run them on containers which would be cheaper. Yes, it would be nice if I could ship my own machine to some datacentre and have someone keep it up and connected, but that would be more expensive than renting a small(ish) VM or running a container. Then there is a matter of off-site backups - we all need them, right? But where do we keep these backups? The cloud is an ideal solution, just rent some disk space somewhere and sync your daily backups there. Granted it is not "computing" but "storage", yet the underlying incentive is the same - access to another datacentre for stuff which is too expensive to maintain on your own, properly.

Icon appropriate for paying for this cloud stuff, every month, because it *is* cheaper not having off-site backups and running websites on home internet connection rather than in some datacentre.

Website programming? Pffft, so 2011. Python's main squeeze is now data science, apparently

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Windows

If you like Python, learn Go

It has two benefits:

1) no silly indentation rules

2) static type safety

Now, Go for data science ... I am afraid it currently does not have nearly as many useful libraries as Python does, and you are unlikely to be able to use it in a Jupyter notebook. So, perhaps stick with Python (but learn Go anyway).

Che tiara! Revolutionary cloud commune fitted for Red Hat developers

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Reading on Eclipse Che Quick-Start it appears that this can be also deployed on "bare" docker or on K8s, so OpenShift is just another delivery platform. This is actually interesting, if I could use this locally on my work laptop (so no network latency in IDE).

Congrats, Satya Nadella. In just five years, you've turned Microsoft from Neutral Evil to, er, merely True Neutral

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Yup; WSU is a very different animal.

Microsoft delivers a second preview of Visual Studio 2019 (a Redmond thing we actually like)

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If I were a .NET web developer

... I would be excited about this part "debugging Alpine ASP.NET Core". Turns out that running ASP.NET core on Alpine is a thing that Microsoft actually wants developers to do!

Oof, are you sure? Facing $9bn damages, Google asks Supreme Court to hear Java spat

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Re: Root for?

... of the second oldest profession, I guess.

Users fail to squeak through basic computer skills test. Well, it was the '90s

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Re: Not sure...

Sometimes the drying is helped by application of IPA (isopropyl alcohol, not the drink variety).

Intel boss: Expect chip shortages into mid-2019, stumbling server processor sales this year

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It's shame that ...

AMD Epyc Rome CPUs are not expected in the first half of 2019.

The D in SystemD stands for Dammmit... Security holes found in much-adored Linux toolkit

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I guess it's a good time

... to remind of Devuan

You can blame laziness as much as greed for Apple's New Year shock

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Re: "Given that a credit card in Germany is just a "delayed-action" debit card"

You can't decide that you won't pay off the full balance at the end of the month we call that "charge card" over here, one example is American Express. The card issuer profit is obviously not from the interest but from the annual fee paid by the client.

Happy new year, readers. Yes, we have threaded comments, an image-lite mode, and more...

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Pint

Lite mode ...

.... is glorious! Thank you!

Millennium Buggery: When things that shouldn't be shut down, shut down

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Where the updates are initiated by IT because they're needed to patch some risk or move off some component that's reached maintenance EOL if you can't get agreement then go to the top team yourself and point out the risk and that you can't accept responsibility for any consequences of postponement.

... and when you do so, do make sure to include a printout to Equifax hack postmortem. Not a link - hard copy so they have no excuse for not knowing the dangers of delayed patching.

LastPass? More like lost pass. Or where the fsck has it gone pass. Five-hour outage drives netizens bonkers

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Pint

+1

(n/t)

Linux kernel Spectre V2 defense fingered for massively slowing down unlucky apps on Intel Hyper-Thread CPUs

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: That's multiprocessing, not multithreading

Many applications don't use multiple threads very heavily. Yes, because you need either 1) embarrassingly parallelizable algorithm (fitting within existing imperative programming paradigms) or 2) a new programming paradigm which limits data sharing between threads. Without either of these, the horizontal scalability of your application is severely limited by the Amdahl's law. New languages like Go or Elixir, or frameworks like Akka go some way towards 2), but few programmers can be bothered.

Microsoft sysadmin hired for fake NetWare skills keeps job despite twitchy trigger finger

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: Memories ...

Ah, printed manuals. Nothing beats them, which is why I continue buying so many books.

Stay classy: Amazon's Jassy gets sassy with Larry

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Unique capabilities of Oracle databases, hahaha. Like performance at the cost of data consistency, without support for fully serializable model.

How one programmer's efforts to stop checking in buggy code changed the DevOps world

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Joke

Re: Jenkins?

Bah! Some people do not need FOSS projects or such fads as CI/CD, as every single line of their own code is perfectly correct. Here is an example of such entirely correct code:

int main() {}

Can your rival fix it as fast? turns out to be ten-million-dollar question for plucky support guy

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: I'm just going to say...

Are you familiar with the term "tech-illiterate"? That's what most directors at established banks are. And they are the only people with the authority to make architectural decisions. That might not apply to one of the upstart banks like Monzo or Starling, but I am yet to learn more about how they work.

Bill Gates joined on stage by jar of poop as he confesses deep love for talking about toilets

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Good thing, actually

One of my favourite charities "Water Aid" also takes a keen interest in sanitation. Having learned a little about how the world works outside of my immediate surroundings, I can understand why.

Astroboffins spot one of the oldest, coolest stars in the universe lurking in the Milky Way

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

"could we visit it?"

Very unlikely. The distance to the star is ~ 1950ly, so assuming that no space warp becomes accessible to us, the travel would probably take too long.

'Blockchain SAVED my Quango'

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Pint

Re: "Do you need a blockchain?"

This is a really good flowchart.

It's wall-to-wall Huawei: Chinese behemoth hogs five of six top spots in SPC-1 array benchmark

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

And so it begins

American vendors abandoning the field for other nations to take over. Next in line: SoftBank with ARM server chips. Not this year, not next ... but it will happen if Americans do not change their attitude.

Swedes grumbling about Apple Store in their park are lucky – in Toronto, Google eats all your data

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge
Joke

... a nicer restaurant, perhaps?

Mourning Apple's war against sockets? The 2018 Mac mini should be your first port of call

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

Re: Mac OS X Server isn't what it used to be

I guess you can use it also as a build server, if you write software for macOS.

Welcome back, 'ping of death', it has been... a few months. Now it's Apple's turn to do the patching

Bronek Kozicki Silver badge

"it may be possible to exploit the buffer overflow to execute arbitrary code in the kernel"

This is very serious, I wonder when we will see "may" change to "is".

Facebook sets Linux kernel tools free

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Re: Hmm, usually when a company does that...

It's not a bad thing, though. If I were a CTO at a technology company, approach "let's give it to the community so we have more potential maintainers and external input" would be my default.

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