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Comment: Re:Rather simple fix (Score 2, Informative) 185

by riperrin (#33215758) Attached to: Touchscreens Open To Smudge Attacks
Actually I have a similar story. My brother left his car at the back of my house while he spent a year travelling. When he came back he couldn’t remember the code to deactivate the immobiliser. 10000 possible combinations and every third time you got it wrong you’d get the alarm going off and you’d have to disconnect the battery. Clearly a brute force attack would piss off the neighbours. So we sat an had a little think about it with a cup of tea (we are British), at which point we noticed that four of the buttons were a lot cleaner than the others. Suddenly we only had 24 combinations to try and managed to set the alarm off only twice.

Top tip: If you’ve got a number pad immobiliser, give it a bit of a clean.

In similar news, I find watching someone draw a pattern a lot easier to replicate than seeing them type numbers. With the “trail” option on you can see the pattern from half the pub away.

Comment: Re:It is killing retail too (Score 2, Interesting) 283

by riperrin (#33121598) Attached to: $200B Lost To Counterfeiting? Back It Up
I work in purchasing, and used to work buying for banded goods. Factories are usually designed to make single types of items, as they are specialised the quality usually improves and so these are used by multiple brands to make their goods. For example you might find two designer hand bags being made out of the same factory. The owner of the factory is likely to receive an order for x amount but he'll make 2x and then sell the other x to highest bidder. Alternatively the official supplier will have two factories on the go, one churning out the goods to the brand owner and to whom ever wants to buy. Also if the brand owner changes factories the factory is likely to continue making the goods anyway. In one case we even found that a brand that had changed to a cheaper supplier. The previous supplier, whom we were in discussions with, showed us the quality of his work and the new suppliers work. For a whole USD saving the brand now had a bag that was significantly poorer in quality. While this was a bit of a sales pitch he'd actually shown us the new suppliers work in the brands HK shop.

Comment: This is (Score 1) 85

by riperrin (#31318740) Attached to: Touchpad Meets Morphing Keyboard
Very similar to the project that I tried to do for my original masters program. I'm glad to see that someone has taken this up as a real product as it is lovely to prove my doubting professors wrong. They provided no help at all and essentially forced me to change my project.
My version differed from this, in that it was the size and dimensions of a full keyboard and was a touch screen, but in essence very similar. Further to that I suggested that full programs could be moved onto the keyboard that where unnecessary on the screen, taking the place of the number pad (which would be on a tab). This could include such things as mp3 players. I think it’ll have massive impact in gaming, although my vision for it way back in 2003 was more about keyboard layouts, but now could include those types of games now enjoyed on the iphone. It’ll also provide a massive change in the way that graphical applications are run. Being able to move photo editing tools onto the keyboard would make the use of screen space far better.

Comment: Re:This just in! (Score 1) 1316

by riperrin (#27208053) Attached to: Narcissistic College Graduates In the Workplace?
Anyway, not narcissism, not egotism... just a mix of inexperience, naivete, and optimism/idealism. I've been in full time employment for just shy of 4 years. So far I've been made redundant twice and I am yet to receive a single pay rise in line with promises made (i.e. you achieve all of X tasks and you shall receive Y). Both times made redundant due the lying and incompetence of the senior management who failed to listen to those saying things will not work and have to be changed. My dad who has been working for just shy of 38 years has been made redundant 4 times in the last 15 years and in those 15 years is yet to receive a single pay rise in line with promises made (i.e. you achieve all of X tasks and you shall receive Y). I am not sure of the details of his redundancies. From all that I have seen I do not trust management. My dad is actually concerned that in my 4 short years I have the built up more vile and bitterness towards those above me the office structure of shirking of responsibility, than he has in the last 38. I have had the optimism stamped out of me by lying, inept and deceitful people and so too will all the other graduates.

Comment: Re:No, they don't (Score 1) 681

by riperrin (#27062353) Attached to: Should Job Seekers Tell Employers To Quit Snooping?

The converse can also be said. Out of the four jobs that I have had since graduating only one I have not been head hunted for (the second oddly). This was mostly because who work at the new company knew me, my character and ability. I hope that people will actually look at my linkedin profile as this is just an internet based extension of this.

On the other side of the argument thinking that people will not search for you during periods of employment is also a bit naïve. At job number two I was working closely with a social inept network admin, I was supposed to present to senior management internet monitoring data for him. It turns out that one of my colleagues was a model in a former life and one of the company's owners would regularly look for photos of her on his work computer. It wasn't included in the report and it was not nice a thing to have to carry round with me.

Comment: Re:No, bigot, Japanese houses suck. (Score 1) 327

by riperrin (#27034373) Attached to: Japanese "Hate" For the iPhone All a Big Mistake
I live in the UK. When my house was built there where only 31 states in the USA. I wouldn't consider this unusual for my neighborhood. During my visit to the states, Massachusetts, buildings that where considered "really old" over here would be considered "well I suppose its old really if you think about it, but not in comparison to the local pub". You get the jist. Where my Grandparents live; houses that have been up for 30-50 years are being torn down and rebuilt. As such they live in a street where most houses have been built in the last 15 years. The difference between my area and my grandparents area is they had the shit blown out of it during WWII and my area didn't. As a consequence the area in which they live was rebuilt rather hastily in the 50s and 60s. Poor planning, building techniques, materials and added social change has meant that these areas where awful to live in. As such these areas are being regenerated. I have no idea what things are like in Japan, but I would imagine this could be a possible explanation for "houses being built to last 30 years at most". Maybe they where built to last, but it's time to change and move on.

Comment: Shape Memory Alloys (Score 1, Interesting) 249

by riperrin (#26884351) Attached to: Physics Experiments To Inspire Undergraduates?
I did a great project on shape memory alloys (SMA). We made a rather crude finger made out of lego and SMA, which was controlable by passing a current through each "muscle". However that was about 9 years ago, I am sure the technology has moved along a lot since then and you could possibly do more intresting things now. G

Comment: My first programming experience (Score 0) 1095

by riperrin (#24287693) Attached to: How To Encourage a Young Teen To Learn Programming?
was at about age 12 in high school with a program where you created a flow diagram in a graphical editor. This would interact with an external device, which might be a lift or traffic lights etc. You could physically interact with the device like pressing the button to call the lift to a certain floor. You'd then see in real time the flow diagram showing which stage the program was at. Maybe some of that Lego mindstorm or whatever its called might be the best thing, assuming you can program that stuff (I don't know for sure). Something where he can actually see what he is programming and how it interacts with the outside world. Reggie

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