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* Posts by aks

67 posts • joined 16 May 2015

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Ruskie boffins blasted for using nuke bomb lab's supercomputer to mine crypto-rubles

aks

Re: Putin is losing his touch

> Putin is losing his touch

Who says he's not mining cryptocurrencies? The Chinese are doing it on an industrial scale.

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BBC Telly Tax petition given new Parliament debate date

aks

"Thirty years without TV and I am still getting threatening letters. If I want them to stop I simply have to take the time to give them my data. GIVE them my data. I thought demanding money with menaces was a crime but not if you are part of "the establishment", it seems."

On moving into my rented house and receiving a letter addressed to "The Present Occupier" I simply called them and explained that I don't watch live television or use iPlayer. They sent "The Present Occupier" a letter showing that no licence is required.

I had explained that I had various equipment in the house including screens, DVD players, computers and a smartphone. I have since acquired a Sky box which I use to listen to radio without a subscription. Problem solved.

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aks

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Shades of Poll Tax.

The amount of people with no TV who would simply refuse to pay such a tax would approach 100%.

It's much more likely that the government would give money to the BBC out of general taxation which would rise to compensate or simpler still by adding to the country's annual deficit.

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aks

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

Channel 4 is government owned, with advertisements.

If the BBC switched to that model, the TV Licence could disappear. They do have some ads but they only promote BBC TV, radio and events.

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aks

Re: If you have issues with the Telly Tax...

It's nothing to do with the equipment. That's always been true, but is even clearer since they've widened the scope to include PC's and mobile. The law's always been about streaming live programs. That's now been extended to include catchup of BBC programs using iPlayer. I'm not sure how long before iPlayer is put directly behind a paywall.

I have all the equipment, which now includes having a PC or mobile.

I don't watch any live TV as I gave up doing that about 15 years ago and haven't had a licence during that time. I've even got the letter from TV Licencing confirming that I don't need one.

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Self-driving cars still do not exist even if we think they do

aks

Re: They kinda do and kinda don't

> It can't be 360 degrees otherwise you'd be going back up the road from whence you came.

Going back from whence you came would be 180 degrees.

I don't know the roundabout in question but suspect it's actually 270 degrees (effectively 3 right turns equals one left turn).

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aks

Re: They kinda do and kinda don't

You won't need the court to be involved.

The decision will be made that manual driving has a huge markup on the insurance premium.

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Brit transport pundit Christian Wolmar on why the driverless car is on a 'road to nowhere'

aks

Re: It appears from the article that Mr. Wolmar is a railway enthusiast...

If that arrangement came to pass, the car is a money-earning investment. Many fewer people would own one.

One thing I have never seen mentioned is that the car drops you at the office then autonomously takes itself to the car park. When you need it, you simply summon it and it rolls up to the door. I'd then take over control to fight my way through the traffic, running down anybody who set their foot on the road. You've got to get your kicks somewhere. ;)

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aks

I tend to agree with the diagnosis given in the article.

In cities and towns the trend would be towards gridlock as people knew the vehicle would do anything to avoid hitting them.

What I don't agree with is the idea of engineered 70mph cars. We've seen what happens with trucks engineered to run at 60mph. They then pass each other at 0.5mph. The idea of 20mph limits in towns has already been shown to *increase* the accident rate presumably because pedestrians become less wary.

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aks

Re: It's too Black and White

Surely that's called a taxi (black, mini or uber flavoured) or one of the gang doesn't drink.

Luckily, where I live the nearest pub is 100 yards away and the furthest about a mile (I live on a small island).

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Nokia 8: As pure as the driven Android - it's a classy return

aks

Claiming that there are plenty of security vunerabilities seems to be a contention without evidence.

Windows 10 Mobile is updated frequently (at least monthly).

Having a device that hackers are not interested in sounds good to me.

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Escrow you, Apple! Ireland expects Cupertino to cough up to €13bn

aks

The comments seem to imagine that Apple have agreed to pay. They've put their spare change into an escrow account so that the money is earmarked for payment once all legal processes have completed.

The purpose is clearly so that Apple can bid for business within the EU by saying the money is allocated and real life should go on.

I predict that this will go to international arbitration eventually.

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aks

Re: the remaining 26 are the republic of Ireland.

Wikipedia disagrees with you, as do I. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ireland

The 1937 constitution laid claim to the whole island of Ireland. The Good Friday Agreement was the acceptance by Dublin that the people of the 6 were entitled to choose whether to be separate or to unite with the 26. Since the Agreement, institutions and trade within the 32 have increased markedly and the border had become almost invisible until the Brexit referendum.

Ireland is the name of the island in English. In Scots Gaelic it's Èirinn, In French it's Irlande, in Welsh it's Iwerddon, in Latin it's Hibernia.

Both Beijing and Taiwan agree that Taiwan is a province of China. They simply disagree about who's the legitimate government of the entire country. That's a difference between the status of Taiwan and the status of Northern Ireland.

Calling the 26 counties Éire is simply a shorthand when distinguishing the 26 from the 32. Mostly used by non-republicans in Northern Ireland.

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aks

Re: Tax refund

To out-pedant you, the name of the country is Éire unless you're writing in English.

But do realise that both names refer to all 32 counties of the island of Ireland. The six in the north-east are called Northern Ireland and the remaining 26 are the republic of Ireland. Capitalised Republic is used by the UK but other countries are "persuaded" to use the fiction that the island is one country, in a similar way that Taiwan is a province of China.

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Pokémon GO caused hundreds of deaths, increased crashes

aks

So, is this Pokemon GO "The Carmageddon edition"?

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Parity calamity! Wallet code bug destroys $280m in Ethereum

aks

Software is never finished

http://dilbert.com/strip/2017-10-02

This seems relevant.

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Red (Planet) alert: Future astro-heroes face shocking adventures on Martian moon Phobos

aks

Re: Controlling landers?

You simply control through a network of small communications satellites, not directly from Phobos to the surface. Either that, or you organise your work to suit the time slots available. That's all you'd need in this first generation expedition.

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Dell forgot to renew PC data recovery domain, so a squatter bought it

aks

"Krebs On Security reports that the domain is administered by a third party, which forgot to re-register it in June 2017."

Whether Dell should have outsourced this task seems to be the real issue.

They will certainly have words to say to the third party.

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Roaming charges drop smacks O2 daddy Telefonica in the profits

aks

Re: Correction

To state the obvious, to benefit from no roaming charges you have to be outside your own location.

UK to UK is within your minutes.

France to France, Germany, or UK is within your minutes.

UK to France will cost you bigtime.

My son has Vodafone Red, pay monthly. They charge £1.50 per minute from UK to Ireland but Ireland to UK doesn't cost as it's roaming and within his minutes.

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From Vodafone's website

Calls to Europe from the UK £1.50 a minute (inc. VAT)

Calls to our Rest of World zone from the UK £2.00 a minute (inc. VAT)

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giffgaff charge 2p landline and 5p per minute to phone Ireland.

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Oh, wow, Canada: No more carrier-locked phones for Canucks

aks

Re: Impact will be on expensive phones

why would they want to refuse an unlocked phone?

i doubt if that would be legal.

if the customer is locked into a 12, 18 or 24 month contract, why should the new provider care that you're paying twice. maybe you want a dual-sim phone so you can use a local pay-as-you-go sim when you're over the border. that's what i've been doing for the past 3 years.

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Wowee. Look at this server. Definitely keep critical data in there. Yup

aks

Re: Interesting....

only bad actors and state-operators would be capable of building such "safe" malware that only targetted the intruder. simply releasing common malware into the wild would be very "contra-indicated". can you imagine what the press would make of such behaviour once it got known? it's close to the concept of protecting your house, office or factory with biological booby traps.

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Malware writer offers free trojan to hackers ... with one small drawback

aks

Why on earth are you assuming that this is a super crafty criminal rather than being state-sponsored?

My first assumption is that {pick from the list} is not only using these low-level hackers to spread the toolkit but also building a list of who they are.

Once the toolkit is widespread enough, it will have crept into many dark corners. Why do all the hard work yourself?

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Supreme Court to rule on whether US has right to data stored overseas

aks

Re: What data did DOJ seek?

They're not after specific data about a specific individual but open access to the servers.

I wonder whether if the USA Supreme Court decides that any data in the world must be made available to them that they'll have a reciprocal agreement that the Irish, British, Germans, Russians, Chinese have the same rights for data stored in the USA.

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aks

Re: What data did DOJ seek?

The USA want to be able to fish around in the data, without a warrent.

Ireland have always offered access once a warrent is issued.

The USA Supreme Court can decide whatever it likes, but Ireland doesn't have to comply. It's a sovereign country and has it's own laws and Supreme Court.

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It's a real FAQ to ex-EDS staffers: You'll do what with our pensions, DXC?

aks

Re: Public Sector Employees "UNDERPAID"

"Currently, my role would attract roughly 35-50% more annual salary in the Private Sector."

Go for it.

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aks

Re: Too simplistic

I'd be surprised if NI was earmarked in any way.

As far as I know, it gets swallowed into the general pot.

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aks

Not true for MEP's and other EU employees. No money has been invested to pay for MP's or MEP's.

As for the private sector, there's always a way to squirrel away money for the future if you do your research or take competent advice.

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aks

That's how it might work with some companies, if you work your entire life for the one company.

I was told by one former employer that I needed to have worked for the company for 5 continuous years to receive any benefit.

Another former employer told me that the money paid in on my behalf was frozen at the time I left (1977) and was not invested in any way.

In your ideal FS world, not only does the employer work for the same company but the same company still exists. If it goes bust and the funds were invested heavily in the company itself, you lose. If it gets bought by another company, the existing fund will likely be frozen and a new one started or you pay into the new company's scheme.

In another scenario, which I avoided but other colleagues fell into, the company insisted that people had signed that this pension was discretionary. Later, the company quoted that clause and paid nothing. We were told that if it was non-discretionary, it would be regarded as payment-in-kind and subject to income tax. I avoided that by refusing to switch to the new scheme, certainly until I could read the new Terms and Conditions. That hadn't arrived by the 6-month time time limit where a choice had to be made. A year later, I was let go. I actually rejoined the company 10 years later but made sure that the company paid into my personal pension on my behalf. No income tax and no National Insurance Tax. That has worked very well for me.

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Spanish govt slammed over bizarre Catalan .cat internet registry cop raid

aks

Re: Information is a dangerous good

What on earth makes you think that's *not* being done?

The thing hampering the Spanish (Madrid) side is that it will be harder for them to push the united side of the argument on Catalan-language websites, newspapers, magazines and books.

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'Don't Google Google, Googling Google is wrong', says Google

aks

Re: Hmm..

when i worked in the netherlands, my colleagues (all fluent in english) were jealous of the ability for english to use nouns as verbs. their example was "to helicopter people out of a disaster area".

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aks

Re: Hmm..

when i worked in the netherlands, my colleagues (all fluent in english) were jealous of the ability to turn any noun into a verb. the example was 'to helicopter people out of a disaster area'.

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aks

as i understand it, in the usa a company must vigorously defend their brands or lose the exclusive rights to them.

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aks

Re: Comma with God.

Ayn Rand especially, as she was a devout atheist.

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aks

Re: September 13, 2017

i think you mean iso date format rather than unix.

if you're going to put the day after the month then the year should go before them both.

while we're on the subject, iso time format should also be preferred. am and pm are anathema in my book.

date-time should always be in gmt, obviously. (i don't refer to it as utc as i'm from greenwich). zulu rules, ok.

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Close Encounters of the Kuiper Belt kind: New Horizons to come within just 3,500km of MU69

aks

Re: Another duckie?

Or ducks created the universe.

Or was it a rabbit? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rabbit%E2%80%93duck_illusion

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FTC wants AT&T to kick in $4bn to help balance US budget. Why? Some dodgy ads or something

aks

Re: A Cancellation Fee of $20 per month?

It remains theft.

The consumer isn't being offered a refund.

The government is simply putting the money in its pocket, according to the article as written.

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A sarcasm detector bot? That sounds absolutely brilliant. Definitely

aks

thus the Low Confidence

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aks

Is that Pacman I see before me?

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aks

Re: Handy . .

Now, what did daddy tell you about stereotyping people?

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Now you can 'roam like at home' within the EU, but what's the catch?

aks

Re: "Customers holidaying in tax havens...... will be charged £1 per minute "

Not if the said tax havens (low tax jurisdictions) are included in the provider's bundle of countries.

Vodafone include the Channel Islands in theirs.

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aks

Re: High HIDDEN COST for calls INSIDE a roaming country

It certainly not true with Vodafone's UK service. They treat it as one big marketplace and include many countries outside of the EU. I live in the Channel Islands and use my 16GB of data and unlimited calls or texts. My only complaint is that they charge me VAT, which we don't have.

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aks

Re: Typical.

Almost, but not quite. Vodafone UK isn't the same company as Vodafone France or Vodafone Germany. Within one country, there are long-term arrangements in place to allow phone-users to connect to any mast, but such arrangements between counties hadn't existed in the past. I assume such agreements have been negotiated and are now in place.

This isn't an EU thing as different providers have mixtures of countries in their free-roaming offerings.

Vodafone here is just an example. It could be Telefonica or any other multinational. I happen to use Vodafone as it has a very good Global Roaming offering this year.

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aks

Re: Typical.

The EU politicians were the ones who reacted because it's very visible to them and their families as they trot around between their home country, Brussels, Strasbourg and other places of jollification.

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OMG, dad, you're so embarrassing! Are you P2P file sharing again?

aks

the money goes to the copyright holder.

occasionally, that's the artist.

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Software dev bombshell: Programmers who use spaces earn MORE than those who use tabs

aks

Re: Of course there's a right answer!

i miss punched cards.

they were perfect for serving slices of cake around on someone's birthday.

the boxes to hold 2,000 cards came as flatpack and needed to be folded before use. we had competitions to see who could fold one the fastest. i won in 29 seconds, but i was a computer operator with ibm at the time.

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H-1B visa applications from India plummet (and Trump can't claim credit)

aks

Re: More analysis required

Most of what you say is valid, but that's the way the world is moving.

India and China still have lower living costs than the USA or Europe but in most cases nowadays the physical location of the skilled worker is relatively unimportant.

The "disaster" has been coming for a long time and won't end until living costs and salaries are relatively level across the world. That's not going to happen any time soon but India and China are now becoming true developers and we should expect them to create most of the world's patents and copyrights as well as consume the resultant products.

PS I've worked in many places worldwide and have worked closely with outsourced developers for the last 15 years. Fortunately, I'm now living a quiet life in semi-retirement.

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Orbital boffins cut four years off NASA mission to shiniest object in the Solar System

aks

Re: Orbiting the object?

Any two objects can orbit each other. It's only a question of mass and distance which determines the orbital period. They've been orbiting comets quite happily.

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Schiaparelli probe crash caused by excessive spin, report concludes

aks

Optional

Seems to me that Schiaparelli got dizzy.

In IT, developers often don't think about such 'edge effects' including texts for overrun, underrun and divide by zero. Testers are needed who's job, and great delight is to break the system.

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The real battle of Android's future – who controls the updates

aks

Re: Google don't even Support Nexus

Or a Windows phone. Works for me on my Lumia 640 XL Dual SIM. Latest Windows 10 release and only one app has failed, but Barclays are working on it. Started as Windows 8 three years ago.

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Bloke charged under UK terror law for refusing to cough up passwords

aks

Re: Ugh

I assume he wasn't flying to the USA.

It seems he's used to being stopped. Why carry any sensitive data in that case. I'd simple have it heavily encrypted on a microSD card and only open it when I get where I'm going.

This comment doesn't make any assumptions about his motives except that if this is the 20th time he's been questioned, maybe he's trying to make the point that he shouldn't be stopped.

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