nav search
Data Centre Software Security DevOps Business Personal Tech Science Emergent Tech Bootnotes

* Posts by Wade Burchette

806 posts • joined 5 Apr 2007


Microsoft says it's time to get serious about facial recognition rules: 'Laws and regulations are indispensable'

Wade Burchette

Not a positive use

"And Smith points to other positive uses like ... obviating the need for passwords."

Using facial recognition to obsolete passwords is a very very bad thing. I have helped people with their iPhone X and to unlock it, I once just held up to his face. The phone was in my hand and I was able to unlock it. Imagine this scenario: The police arrest you and they want to get into your phone. They don't need a warrant because all they have to do is hold up to your face. Now they are in and can do whatever they want.

And there can be other similar situations. Pretend that the rubber masks of Mission Impossible become reality, then a person, agency, criminal, whomever can generate your face and unlock your phone, computer, etc at leisure. The point is, using your face to replace passwords is never ever a good thing. It may be a convenience, but that does not make it a good idea.

It's official. Microsoft pushes Google over the Edge, shifts browser to Chromium engine

Wade Burchette

Lipstick on a pig

Going to the Chromium engine will not solve the fundamental flaws in Edge, specifically (1) an illogical and confusing UI; (2) a reboot required for updates; (3) add-ons require the app store. I reject Edge, not because of its engine, but because I find it difficult to use. In fact, I do not care about the rendering engine, at all. And I do not want to care.

What is more, the browser and the OS should be completely separate. This way I can uninstall it if I wish (and I only will so long as the UI continues to be stupid) and updates can happen without using Windows Update or requiring a restart.

Microsoft polishes up Chromium as EdgeHTML peers into the abyss

Wade Burchette

Re: I did use Edge...

I tried it too. But the UI was so confusing and illogical that I quickly gave up. I don't care if it can solve world peace, if the UI is illogical than nothing else matters. That is why Edge is unloved. Adopting Chromium will not fix that fatal flaw.

Great Scott! Is nothing sacred? US movie-goers vote Back To The Future as most-wanted reboot

Wade Burchette

The reboot I want ...

... is Star Wars episodes 1-3, and 7-8. And I want a clean slate. Take the original scripts and ideas of all 5 and throw them in a box and then burn the box and just for good measure hurl the ashes into the sun. However, if this is not feasible, at least nuke and burn episodes 1 and 8. Episode 8 was so bad that I decided to never see Solo nor episode 9.

Mobile networks are killing Wi-Fi for speed around the world

Wade Burchette

Expanding 3G? Please. Here in the US of A, I can take you to several places where there is not 1G service. And every carrier has large areas without 1G service. Why are we bothering with 5G when the providers still haven't gotten 1G right?

Reverse Ferret! Forget what we told you – the iPad isn't really for work

Wade Burchette

Bendy iPad

That bendy iPad reminded me of this video about Apple's sorry product engineering.

Hands up who isn't p!*$ed off about Amazon's new HQ in New York and Virginia?

Wade Burchette

I wonder who owns the Washington Post ... hmm?

Wade Burchette

Re: I wish they'd do that for SMALL businesses...

This is not a liberal or conservative thing. The US has the best government money can buy, and both political parties are bought and paid for by corporate donors. If the democrat politicians complaining about this (and they are right to complain) get a huge political donation from Amazon, they would change their attitude immediately, guaranteed.

Microsoft lobs Windows 10, Server Oct 2018 update at world (minus file-nuking 'feature') after actually doing some testing

This post has been deleted by a moderator

Huawei Mate 20 Pro: If you can stomach the nagware and price, it may be Droid of the Year

Wade Burchette

The notch

It is awful, just awful.

Also, no separate headphone jack, then no thank you.

Zip it! 3 more reasons to be glad you didn't jump on Windows 10 1809

Wade Burchette

Re: As one who has been microshafted

The new Garmin GPS can be updated by WiFi. But it still takes about an hour to do so.

Facebook, Google sued for 'secretly' slurping people's whereabouts – while Feds lap it up

Wade Burchette

Re: Good

Google Maps at one time would not work properly if you turned off the 'high accuracy' location and just used GPS satellites only. This was about 3 years ago. I had my phone on a windshield mount and every few miles it would say "searching for signal" even though it had a clear view to the sky. I still believe Google was sabotaging the app so that you would turn on high precision tracking. Even now, it still bugs me about turning on location services.

Motorola: Oops, phone busted? Grab a spudger and go get 'em, champ

Wade Burchette

I think my next phone will be a Motorola

I want to encourage companies to make their phones repairable. And the best way to encourage them is to buy products which you can repair and shun those you cannot.

Pull request accepted: You want to buy GitHub, Microsoft? Go for it – EU

Wade Burchette

Re: New name?


Apple to dump Intel CPUs from Macs for Arm – yup, the rumor that just won't die is back

Wade Burchette

Re: Same trick, new pony

AMD has already shown that they will help with with a semi-custom chip. Look at the consoles, the PS4, XBox, and the new Chinese one are all semi-custom AMD parts and Sony, at least, is working with AMD for the PS5. AMD is even helping Intel with a semi-custom CPU by putting an AMD GPU on an Intel CPU. What Apple may end up doing is going ARM and licensing x86 from AMD in a semi-custom package.

Regardless, this will be one of those rumors I will believe when I see. I personally think more than likely there will be a Macbook/iPad hybrid, like a Chromebook.

In Windows 10 Update land, nobody can hear you scream

Wade Burchette

Re: I guess I got lucky

Also true with the AMD Ryzen. The Ryzen 1xxx will install on Windows 7 with a hack; any Ryzen 2xxx will not. The ACPI found on Ryzen 2xxx is incompatible with Windows 7. This, of course, means you cannot use the Windows 7 disc to repair your Windows. I prefer the Windows 7 disc because you can have multiple command prompt windows open.

GDPR stands for Google Doing Positively, Regardless. Webpage trackers down in Europe – except Big G's

Wade Burchette

Re: Google is headed for a Republican beatdown

The US has the best government money can buy. A large campaign contribution can make Congress look the other way. Or at least just have an inquiry whose real purpose is to look like they are doing something when they are doing nothing. This applies to both parties. Both of them answer to their corporate overlords first. Elections ain't cheap after all.

Pixel 3, 3XL, Slate tab launch: Google emits swanky iPad botherer while tarting up mobes

Wade Burchette

The notch

It is awful, just awful.

Robot Operating System gets the Microsoft treatment

Wade Burchette

I, Microsoft

"Honey, where is the credit card? I want to purchase an app for our robot so that it can fix Mexican food tonight. That app we purchased so it can make pizza was great!"

Meanwhile, Sonny walks up to a member of the family and says "I noticed you like Mexican food. Would you like me to find flights to Mexico? Delta is currently running a special on flights to Mexico City, 10% off today only."

"No thank you, Sonny. I just want fajitas tonight."

"I noticed that it has been 4000 miles since your last oil change. Would you like me to schedule an appointment to get your oil changed? Jiffy Lube is currently running a special on oil changes, free upgrade to synthetic oil, today only."

"No thank you, Sonny. I change my own oil."

"Would you like me to purchase oil for vehicle? Advance Auto is running a special on their motor oil. Free STP oil filter with the purchase of 5 quarts of Pennzoil synthetic motor oil, today only."

"No thank you, Sonny."

"I noticed your wife is a nurse and next week is her birthday. Would you like me to order her some nurse's scrubs? JC Penny is running a sale on nurse's scrubs, 15% off today only."

"No thank you, Sonny."

"I noticed that your blood pressure has been a little high lately. Perhaps you should call Dr. Smith and schedule an appointment. And ask Dr. Smith about Expesniveall, a new blood pressure medication by Pfizer. With Expesniveall you can take control of your life again. Side effects include poverty, stress over bills, death, violent diarrhea, and sodium deficiency. These are not all the possible side effects. Tell your doctor about all the medication you take. You'll be glad with Expesniveall because you will finally have your blood pressure under control. Call Dr. Smith today and ask about Expesniveall."

"No, Sonny. My blood pressure is high because every thought out of your mouth is a flippin' targeted ad!"

Microsoft gets ready to kill Skype Classic once again: 'This time we mean it'

Wade Burchette

Microsoft does not listen

I remember testing Windows 10. The most requested feature was the return of Aero; didn't happen. I requested the return of a full backup program (and had hundreds of "me too's" for that); didn't happen. I do not remember everything from then, but I do remember this: some of the most requested items in the Win10 beta were ignored. I concluded when it was all said and done that Microsoft was like a spoiled brat. They weren't looking for feedback, they were looking for affirmation. Requests that satisfied their idiotic vision were listened too, but the majority requests that did not jive with that were ignored.

The same is clearly true with Skype. Microsoft is still a petulant child. They claim to want your feedback, but they do not. What they want is for you to stroke their ego. Would you expect any less really? It is the same old story: big company buys smaller company, big company gets rid of people who made smaller company, people stop using smaller company's product, big company wonders why. I stopped using Skype a very long time ago because it just wasn't that good anymore. All Microsoft has to do to make it good is listen and I mean really listen -- something they have shown an inability to do since SatNad took over.

Holy smokes! US watchdog sues Elon Musk after he makes hash of $420 Tesla tweet

Wade Burchette

Re: Maximum Hubris

"Manufacturers thought this because for decades they were a dead-end niche. Technology, particularly battery technology, wasn't there."

Battery technology still isn't there. Electric cars will not take off until I can travel 300+ miles in a 5 minute recharge. As it is with internal combustion engines, I pull into a gas station and, assuming it is not busy, 5 minutes later I am leaving, including the time it takes to pay. Until the battery technology allows for a 5 minute recharge, then electric cars are still a dead-end.

Android Phones are 10: For once, Google won fair and square

Wade Burchette

Re: Other OS are available

Um ... Lineage OS is based on Android.

Office 2019 lumbers to the stage once more as Microsoft promises future releases

Wade Burchette

Re: Commitment

Office 2019 "please don't buy this $150/£150 copy once and not give us any more money for 10+ years" version.

Microsoft 'kills' passwords, throws up threat manager, APIs Graph Security

Wade Burchette

"All the new laptops being rolled out here have fingerprint login (to the domain) enabled. Most users quite like that. These are the same users who are used to unlocking their phones with a fingerprint, a PIN etc. so it's not a stretch for them to adopt this to log onto their work network."

Fingerprint login is a very very bad idea. For some reason, none of my fingers work with a fingerprint reader. And I've used them all - the one you swipe on a laptop, the ones your keep your finger over on a laptop and phone, the ones you mash down with - and none of them work with all 10 of my fingers. I can't be the only one.

But assuming my fingers did work, how hard is it to copy my fingerprint considering of all the things I touch every day? For a professional or a government, it is not very secure.

Flying to Mars will be so rad, dude: Year-long trip may dump 60% lifetime dose of radiation on you

Wade Burchette


Whenever the topic of radiation comes up, I like to refer to this chart:

It helps puts things into perspective and shows that radiation at low levels is not bad for you. But some people think that all radiation is immediately bad for you. This does not mean we cannot take steps to mitigate extra radiation on a trip to Mars. The chart is just meant to put things in perspective.

Microsoft: Like the Borg, we want to absorb all the world's biz computers

Wade Burchette

Re: Testing


"I don't see why Microsoft wouldn't be able to do the same."

Um ... have you been on the moon the past 3 years? Have you seen all the articles about how a Windows 10 update breaks something? If Microsoft does not properly test their updates to Windows 10, what makes you think they will do a better job here? But you are right, there is no reason Microsoft wouldn't be able to do the same. And that is the problem: they are able but not willing.

You know all those movies you bought from Apple? Um, well, think different: You didn't

Wade Burchette

Paying customer v. Pirate

If you are paying customer:

(a) If you have bought a disc, you insert the disc. Then wait for a studio logo promo to finish. Which then goes to a movie trailer that you have to press a button to bypass. If you are lucky, there isn't another movie trailer or two. But only if you are lucky. Then you get to a menu which takes at least 15 seconds before you can do anything. Finally after selecting to play the movie, you get an unskippable anti-piracy warning. Followed by an unskippable screen as to why this movie was rated the way it was. Followed by an unskippable legal disclaimer about the opinions of the commentary not being the opinions of the studio. And then finally the movie starts.

(b) If you bought a digital copy, you have to sign in to an account. Which then verifies that you can use and download the movie you bought, while making sure you didn't download too many times. At least it lets you stream, provided that the movie studio still has a contract with Apple, Amazon, etc. Which is not guaranteed, so your money may go bye-bye at the whim of a movie studio. And every time you stream or play a downloaded copy, the video has to check in to make sure you are authorized to play that video. An authorization that can be revoke by Apple, Amazon, etc or the movie studio as it suits then.

But if you are a pirate:

(a) You insert your disc, USB drive, or similar, push play and enjoy.

(b) You load the Plex app on your smart TV, Roku, TiVo, etc, find your video file, and enjoy.

Apple in XS new sensation: Latest iPhone carries XS-sive price tag

Wade Burchette

No seperate headphone jack?

Then no thank you.

Microsoft: You don't want to use Edge? Are you sure? Really sure?

Wade Burchette

Dear Microsoft

If your product was superior, people would be knocking down your doors to use it. If Edge and Windows 10 was really good, you wouldn't have to resort to dirty tricks to get people to use it. The simple fact that you must resort to underhanded tactics means your product is garbage, it does not mean we are ignorant.

Dear Microsoft, if you are reading this and listening -- and based on much you listened to feedback in Windows 10 beta I know you are not -- I will tell you what is wrong with Edge. First, the UI is confusing and stupid. The simple fact is it could solve world peace but if the UI is so terrible that it is difficult to use, like the UI in Edge is, then nothing else matters. Second, I shouldn't have to use the Microsoft store to install add-ons. (I, of course, know why that is true. The purpose of Windows 10 is to make money off me after day 1 and you thus want me to get used to using the Windows store so I will buy stuff through it.) Third, updates should never ever without exception require a restart. The browser and the OS should be separate.

I will be happy to use Edge without being pushed if, and only if, you make a product worth using. As it is now, you made a product worth running away from.

I wish I could quit you, but cookies find a way: How to sidestep browser tracking protections

Wade Burchette

Re: Multiple layers

I use uBlock and NoScript. For any tracking cookie that breaks through those defenses, I go to my router and make that domain point to Despite being blocked at the router, somehow I still get a cookie. I have yet to figure out that out.

Nokia scores a $3.5bn deal to inflict 5G on T-Mobile customers

Wade Burchette

Re: Stop 5G

It is even worse here in the US of A. There are spots where I cannot get 1G coverage. And I'm not talking about mountainous terrain. There are places I travel that are flat, rural areas where I have no coverage at all. My mobile phone company has an app where you can report dead spots. I use that app to report such dead spots, and I even told them through it that I much rather have full telephone coverage everywhere than LTE data somewhere.

How hack on 10,000 WordPress sites was used to launch an epic malvertising campaign

Wade Burchette

There is a simple solution

"The ads often contained malicious JavaScript."

There is a simple solution to malvertising: ABSOLUTELY NO JAVASCRIPT, JAVA, FLASH, or SIMILAR IN ANY AD EVER, NO EXCEPTION! Advertisements used to work just fine without javascript, java, or Flash. What changed?

But this will never happen. Their greed trumps my security (and privacy) every day of the week, and twice on Sunday.

You want to know which is the best smartphone this season? Tbh, it's tricky to tell 'em apart

Wade Burchette

Re: My wishlist

I would like to add one thing to your wishlist: A minimum of 4 years of security updates and enhancements.

I shouldn't have to look into Lineage OS (the successor to Cyanogenmod) to get new security updates after 18 months. I don't like getting a new phone because that means I have to spend a lot of time transferring stuff and getting things the way I like it back. I want to keep using my phone for at least 3 years, probably longer. It is not the money, it is the time involved with a new phone.

Shock Land Rover Discovery: Sellers could meddle with connected cars if not unbound

Wade Burchette

Re: Good reason not to buy

"So what happens when (not if) ALL card are law?"

I would like to see how a connected car can work without an antenna and its fuse removed.

Skype Classic headed for the chopping block on September 1

Wade Burchette

Re: People still use Skype?

It is the same old story: big company buys smaller company, big company gets rid of the people who made the smaller company successful, big company then wonders why people abandon the smaller company's product.

It walks, it talks, it falls over a bit. Windows 10 is three years old

Wade Burchette

Reasons why Windows 7 is far superior

In Windows 7, you have a proper and logical start menu whose goal is to make it easy to do things and not to push apps through an app store where Microsoft profits.

In Windows 7, you can choose which updates to download, when to download them, and when to install them.

Windows 7 is pretty; Windows 10 has the dog-butt ugly flat look.

Windows 10 is slowly replacing the control panel of Windows 8, 7, Vista. But as it does, what was once 1 step is now 5 steps.

Windows 7 never tries to trick you into giving Microsoft your email to log in.

Windows 7 has a full backup program.

Windows 10 took away the free games and replaced them with games with ads. Why? The games were stable, all you had to do was keep them and do nothing else.

The Windows 10 email app is pure garbage. Unfortunately, Microsoft no longer lets you download the old pretty good Windows live mail program. So you email program choices are garbage, Thunderbird, or something that costs money.

I do not want the app store icon put back on the taskbar after every update. I do not want my telemetry and privacy settings undone after every update. I do not want to use the illogical and confusing Edge browser so stop bugging me about it; I don't care how much faster it is, if it is difficult to use that is all irrelevant. Windows 7 has none of those annoyances.

I have concluded that the purpose of Windows 10 is to make money off you after day 1. I don't care how much better it is in other areas, when it is annoying and difficult to use, all that other stuff is irrelevant. A program or OS should focus first on making my life easier; but Windows 10 cares not about that. It only cares about making Microsoft money after the first day.

Did you know? The word 'Taiwan' would crash iOS thanks to a buggy filter for the Chinese govt

Wade Burchette

Re: Denying reality for the sweet, sweet cash

"The reality is corporations are amoral entities with only one purpose for existence."

Apple is a publicly traded corporation. Like all publicly traded corporations, the shareholders only care about profits. They don't want to hear "we lost billions because we made an honorable decision". If shareholders heard those words, they will force out the CEO and bring in someone who will make billions, all so their stock price will go up. This is the nature of the beast, and it is both good and bad.

HP Ink's UK profits tumble nearly 85% – of course Brexit to blame

Wade Burchette

Re: I advise people not to touch HP printers

3. The reliability is absolute garbage. If you make it 6 months without having some issue with the newer ink printer or 12 with the current lasers, you either didn't print much or you one of the lucky few.

A volt out of the blue: Phone batteries reveal what you typed and read

Wade Burchette

Re: If someone is able to open my phone

You may not be the target.

Imagine that the CIA, Kremlin, MI6 or any other clandestine organization was wanting to spy on an individual. They could have a "friend" deliver them a mobile phone with this battery spying tech on it. Wait for them to be on a cellular network and not WiFi and then upload the data through untraceable routes. There are other delivery vectors to. Study a person enough to know where they go and where they would buy and service phones. Then arrange for an "accident" so that the phone is damaged and while it is being repaired, plant the spying battery. Or, keep a special stock of modified phones and when the target has to replace his after the "accident" ensure that he buys the modified phone.

Apple takes $9m kick down under after bricking iPhones

Wade Burchette

Re: OoooH That will teach them

A better punishment is to make the Tim Cook pay $9 million. If we hold the CEO financially responsible for malfeasance then junk like this would die overnight. Making the business pay is just a tax write-off. The people responsible or the people who approve of bad decisions are not affected at all and so they have no motivation for doing the right thing. Touch their wallet and suddenly they will straighten up and fly right.

In defence of online ads: The 'net ain't free and you ain't paying

Wade Burchette

Re: happy for adverts if....

I have some sensible rules for ads before I consider them acceptable. These rules are sensible because they were the standard when the internet went from luxury to necessity. If they worked once, they can work again.

(1) Absolutely no tracking in any way, shape, or form, no exception. Just because you attempt to make it sound beneficial 'by showing ads to my interest' does not make it acceptable. (2) Absolutely no pop-up window, pop-under window, or obscures part or all of a web page, no exception. (3) Absolutely no ad that attempt to determine my location, no exception. i.e. No ad that says '[city name] man discovers shocking secret'. (4) Absolutely no ad that requires javascript, java, flash, or any other plug-in, no exception. Incidentally, obey this rule would kill malvertising immediately. (5) Absolutely no autoplay videos except and only except when I click on a clear link to a video. This rule applies to more than ads.

My rules are not a burden because websites used to be quite profitable following my rules. But greed took over and advertisers went too far. And instead of realizing they are the problem, they try to guilt us into obeying their perverted point of view. That won't work for me. And whenever I find a website that tries to guilt me, I make it a point to explain that I am not a mooch but I am someone who cares deeply about my privacy and security.

Nadella tells worried GitHub devs: Judge us by our actions

Wade Burchette

FYI: Qualcomm hasn't given up on Arm-based Windows 10 slabtops

Wade Burchette

Windows on ARM will never work unless I can run my programs (and not just apps) from 10 years ago on it. I have programs from over 10 years ago that I still use quite often. I cannot be the only one. Legacy compatibility is more important than people realize.

Is Microsoft about to git-merge with GitHub? Rumors suggest: Yes

Wade Burchette

Re: Disney probably is more of an IT company than AOL

The only company I think would be worse for Github than Microsoft would be Disney. These are the same greedy bastards who keep bribing ... er "lobbying" elected officials to increase copyright's length. The Big Mouse has become thoroughly evil.

Wade Burchette

It is the same old story ...

Big company buys smaller company. Big company replaces all the employees who made smaller company with their own personnel. The products of smaller company quickly become garbage because the big company's personnel have no personal investment in the smaller company's products and ideas and so do not truly appreciate its value.

Sysadmin's PC-scrub script gave machines a virus, not a wash

Wade Burchette

"We used to have McAfee on our Uni NT4 machines, it used to slow the PCs down so much that most people just disabled it."

So, just like modern McAfee then. It is nice to see that McAfee hasn't abandoned their glorious time-honored tradition of slowing computers down to a crawl.

Within Arm's reach: Chip brains that'll make your 'smart' TV a bit smarter

Wade Burchette

Re: How will it be used?

See Minority Report to know exactly how it will be used.

US Congress mulls expanding copyright yet again – to 144 years

Wade Burchette

Re: 100 Years Of Hell

It is not a Repub/Democrat thing. The mistake people make is they really believe that the other party is corrupt to the core while their own favorite party is not. Example: Bill Clinton, Democrat, signed the DMCA law which made it illegal for me to break encryption even if I want to make a personal copy of my legally purchased item. All political parties today answer to their corporate overlords, just in different ways. The only way to fix it is to ask the people who are bribed by corporations to ban those very same bribes. That ain't going to happen.

US senators ask FTC to investigate Google's Location imbroglio

Wade Burchette

Google location services

Google Maps is the worst violator. Every time you start it up, it checks to make sure you have full location tracking. If you switch to GPS only, then it will nag you every time. EVERY time. And it is worded to make you believe that it is all-or-nothing. I would switch, but in my testing I find Google Maps is the best for directions on rural routes, like I have to take. I find Waze (also owned by Google and which also nags you about location services) is best for long distance and city drives.

At one time, Google even gimped Maps unless you used full location tracking. Two years ago (with my old LG G4 that died one day for no good reason) I was driving along a rural highway. GPS only location, phone on a windshield mount. Every few miles there was a message "searching for signal". An update to Maps came out soon after that and magically under the same scenario, there was no "searching for signal" issue.

FCC sets a record breaking $120m fine for rude robocalls

Wade Burchette

Re: First step the fixing robocalls

Have fun putting people who are robocalling from India with a VoIP number in jail.

The first step is to force the phone companies to actually do something about the problem. They have the ability to stop this, or at least greatly reduce it. But they are too lazy (and cheap) to do anything substantial. Some let you use the service, but that is not bulletproof because illegal robocallers can just change their numbers daily and even use an active number belonging to a real person. I have had people call me because a robocaller used my number. Stopping robocalls isn't going to increase the phone companies' revenue so they will not do anything about it unless forced.


The Register - Independent news and views for the tech community. Part of Situation Publishing