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Comment: Really? (Score 2) 75 75

Every laptop I've ever had died from hinge-strain breaking the hinges.

To the point that I'm always ultra-careful opening and shutting any laptop, but it still happens.

I'm quite impressed that the Samsung I use at the moment isn't showing a single crack yet, but I imagine it won't be long.

This just seems like the worst of bad ideas possible. And it hinges on the side? God, that's going to put tremendous strain on parts of the screen that were never designed to hold weight.

Even if it's not just a con, there's no way that's a practical product unless the original laptop is designed for that extra weight and strain. And, I'm incredibly suspicious of the price, and also incredibly suspicious of quite how you're going to get that to work with any laptop.

Comment: Re:You think V3 is bad? (Score 1) 53 53

Try tponline.co.uk - which is the UK , Teacher's Pension (and List 99 temporary criminal record check before the "proper" check is done) website.

Ironically, it's one of the few website that REQUIRES a client certificate for every user who logs into it (which is a pain in the butt and costs a fortune as only they can supply the correctly signed client certs).

The signup page, however? SSL v2.0 and vulnerable to EVERYTHING:


An "F" rating on SSL Labs. First time I've ever seen that on a domain that I've thought to check.

Comment: Re:yeah yeah (Score 2) 53 53

Well.. personally speaking I don't expose any functionality to the net unless it can be updated, authenticated, secured, QoS'd, logged and monitored.

So pretty much all those devices shouldn't BE on the boundary of your network, the only thing standing between you and the outside world.

If you want to do that, use reverse proxies, not port-forwards, use VPN's, not opening up some cheap Chinese webcam to your home network and the random people of the Internet.

So it doesn't actually matter if they used TLS or not - they are communicating only across a secured network anyway. You may as well just HTTP or telnet into them from your VPN.

Just make sure that your frontline, Internet-facing, open-to-attack-from-the-Internet device if secured. So your VPN/firewall. And that's it.

Comment: Re:The Nature of Central Banks (Score 1) 358 358

Ah, this would be the Iceland that "had to obtain emergency funding from the International Monetary Fund and a range of European countries in November 2008". And also the Iceland whose economy is "small and subject to high volatility".

The Iceland whose GDP is worth less than what the UK spend each year on weddings alone. The Iceland whose debt to other countries is actually more than 100% than that pittance of GDP.

With 3 people per square kilometre and less than the population of a medium size town in the UK (or any one single London borough).

Sorry, pal, you can make all the claims you like. The ONLY counterexample you provide is actually doing no better than anyone else, and is on a scale so small as to be statistically useless anyway.

I'm not a banker or economist, by the way, just a mathematician.

And when the Icelandic banks crashed, other countries had to compensate savers who had been using them as the Icelandic banks had zero actual protection for their customers at all. All that teaches you is that people WON'T invest in Icelandic banks because they just lose their money if it all goes wrong.

Sure, there's a point at which you have to let the banks fall over to save other things, but that's true of anything - even Greece today. We're choosing to let them collapse rather than extend more and more bailouts to them. It's just a question of scale.

An country that's got the population of Pittsburgh and the GDP less than a UK mobile phone network's entire worth is - pretty much - a nonsensical thing to extrapolate to the world economy.

Comment: Re:I Wish Mine Had Been Blocked (Score 2) 23 23

Or, like EVERYONE tells you to - backup your damn machine. P.S. If your backup doesn't get you back to exactly where you were last week, it's not a backup, just a bad data copy.



However, for years, people have mocked my decision to NOT have auto-updates turned on. I only press update when I know that my machine is backed up, there's a fix I need to deploy, and I have the time / willingness to do it.

No, my machine doesn't have viruses etc. (I've had precisely one in my life and that was from a demo copy of Sin on a PC magazine coverdisc - which shows you how long ago that was!) because I abide by simple security practices that mean Windows doesn't NEED to run lots of random third-party executables to do what I want.

There's a reason that MS *can't* block WSUS for business users being used to stop automatic updates for Windows 10. Because we'd tear their fucking heads off. Windows updates have caused shit like you describe since their introduction. Sure, most people won't notice, but if it only happens to 1% of computers regularly deploying updates the chances are that none of your friends will have had those problems. But similarly, with the same odds the chances are that in any large deployment AT LEAST one machine will fuck up from automatic updates every month. Fuck adding that to my IT burden.

In work the other day, one of my users was accidentally given a brief window when they could receive updates from Windows Update instead of WSUS (I'd accidentally pulled them out of the client group on WSUS while looking for a test machine). In that short opportunity, it took it upon itself to update from 8 to 8.1, thereby breaking the finance software that we use permanently. Additionally, the desktop now gets a crash in in a mp4 video dll every 10 seconds that you can't stop crashing without reverting the update associated with it. Seriously, no newer patch fixes it or I'd deploy it in a second. And I had to give them RDP to a plain Windows 8 machine to finish their finance stuff temporarily while I revert their config.

Seriously, automatic system-level updates without user interaction is the most stupid fucking idea in the history of bad ideas, not to mention not being able to PERMANENTLY say no to a particular update, and having NO proper way to system restore to a point before the update applied and stop it (in the majority of cases - I've yet to see system restore do what it promises but I've dealt with lots of users have accidentally restored their personal laptops back to factory settings or unrecoverable states using it!).

If you work in IT and haven't yet realised this, I really pity you. Servers, internet-facing services, maybe but there you have the tools to deal with this crap and STILL shouldn't be blindly pushing updates anyway.

Unmanaged clients that aren't eligible for WSUS because they are home-use? Back those fuckers up and turn off automatic Windows Update.

Comment: Assange. (Score 2) 212 212


A) He can't get to France without stepping out of the door.
B) We arrest him the second he does that.
C) He stands trial for skipping bail etc. (unfortunately, his life in the embassy is prima facie evidence of guilt in that case, no matter the mitigating circumstances).
D) He serves whatever sentence he gets for that (hard to imagine he doesn't get one).
E) Then we're required to honour any EU warrant that was issued.
F) Then he's either out of UK hands, or able to go to France freely anyway.

After that you can discuss whether or not asylum in France is justified - methinks that the political climate may have changed somewhat by then (in which direction, who knows)?

Comment: Low-latency (Score 3, Informative) 45 45


Yeah. Right.

At absolute best*, with no processing time, buffering, contention, sharing, delay or retransmission whatsoever through the entire process, with optical switching all the way along, with routing direct to each users and end-point, with not a single blip or anything else, that's going to be more delay on top of normal Internet latency.

Fast, yeah I can't argue that one way or another. But that's about volume, not delay. If you turn on a tap (faucet?) in the US and then put your head in the other end of the hose in the EU, it doesn't matter how big the hose is or how much water is coming down - it will still take a long time for the water to arrive. When it does, of course it can be high-pressure, huge volume down a ginormous hose. But delay will still make it useless for telephony, streaming, and a range of other purposes.

I'm all behind the concept, but don't claim low-latency as if it could possibly compete with any other technology out there - my mobile phone barely get 100ms delay to even default gateways).

(* Even LEO is 190km up. A round-trip from that to a base-station to a 0ms Internet back to the satellite back to the ground is going to be:

4 x 190km = 760,000m
Speed of light is 299,792,458 m/s.
3ms or thereabouts?

Maybe tiny in theory, huge in practice because none of the above theoretically-ideal-scenarios actually exist.)

Comment: Re:What's the score now? (Score 1) 77 77

Could be used on more operating systems doesn't translate to more sales.

And it's not "without them having to do anything". Just patent/copyright-auditing the proprietary driver they had in order to open-source would probably wipe out any extra sales they gained alone. Let alone ongoing maintenance, catering for all the Linux kernel changes as they try to get it accepted into the kernel for several years, bus-changes, new versions of CUDA / OpenGL translations etc.

Honestly, look into the costs. They wouldn't actually make that much at all, and it would cost them dear to try. It's not as simple as "let's just push our existing codebase to github", and certainly not if you want anyone to make any sense of it, and certainly not if your codebase changes nearly every week (I've done 20-30 driver updates to my laptop over the last 2 years, for a single chipset that's hardly used any more - god knows what kind of churn they have in their source code management).

And for a handful of geeks on a minority operating system that has things like Steam, etc., yes but they're not going to RUN OUT and buy a new nVidia card just to use those games. They either buy new regularly anyone to play them on Windows, or they will re-use what they already have.

Some places it makes sense. But here, I have to agree with nVidia that it probably doesn't make any business-sense at all.

Comment: Re:What's the score now? (Score 1) 77 77

I'm an Open-Source advocate, don't get me wrong.

However, they are under no obligation whatsoever, so why should they? What advantage do they get from opening them? What's going to be the thing that will make them want to open their drivers? What's going to outweigh potential patent etc. risks?

Because, as far as I can see, they gain basically nothing. They might get a "good news" article or two but it won't increase their sales significantly at all.

Are we still in the era of hoping that huge multinational companies will do complicated, expensive, liability-affecting things for us out of the goodness of their hearts if we complain enough?

I would love them to, don't get me wrong, but I can perfectly see why they - and others - don't. There's no advantage to a network-card manufacturer not having their network card drivers in the kernel. They don't do anything secret, they operate on well-defined protocols, they all pretty much do the same things, and you can't even start up a computer properly nowadays if your network card isn't supported from the first minute. So the open-source code is next to nothing anyway.

But graphics card drivers? What's in it for nVidia? Will they sell more video cards? No. Can you not boot your machine without an OS driver? No. Can you just use the proprietary drivers? Yes. Is card X that operates at 10billion IPS almost identical in operation to card Y that operates at 100billion? No. Not even close.

And then you have to have OpenGL / Mesa / CUDA etc. drivers, APIs, libraries, etc. All this doesn't affect most kinds of hardware but for graphics - one of the fastest moving technologies - it does.

So I can't blame them. And I can't think why they should beyond political idealism. And I can't think what the OS community could do to change that.

If OS ruled the world and could decree such things and nobody bought things that weren't OS-approved, sure, we could bully them into submission. But we don't work like that.

So what can we, as a community, provide to nVidia to convince them to open themselves up to potential patent lawsuits and huge developer expenses on a regular basis?

I can't think of anything.

Comment: Re:Free? (Score 2, Informative) 85 85

"Advanced features" like being able to write in a blank document, or change a character in an existing one.

Basically it's view-only unless you pay.

That's not so bad for smartphone, but absolutely no different to the tablet versions at all (which are effectively useless beyond being a free document viewer, which you can get thousands of).

Comment: 104Mb (Score 4, Informative) 85 85

104Mb download just for Word on its own.

Wow. Seems like all those years of bloated coding are coming back to bite them.

Install office with very limited use on a mobile, and you lose half a Gig of internal storage on your smartphone and still might have to pay for an Office 365 subscription.

OS/2 must die!