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

* Posts by aks

156 posts • joined 16 May 2015


Big Falcon Namechange for Musk's rocket: BFR becomes Starship


Re: Yes

Somebody seems to be downvoting everything in sight. Weird.

Microsoft slips ads into Windows 10 Mail client – then U-turns so hard, it warps fabric of reality


Re: WTF?

Microsoft have handled this in a cack-handed way but it looks like they're exploring the concept of Office 365 for free (with ads). This business model certainly seems to work for Google, Facebook, etc.

The target markets they mentioned are presumably places where few users are actually paying for the current product.

Bright spark dev irons out light interference


Re: Have you ever put something apparently useless to good use?

Ooo, naughty people. Must get spanked. Fancy not aligning your wheelie bins. Hope the colours are in spectrum order.

Persuading world+dog to love Microsoft's AI assistant a step too far for Acompli founder


Re: Pretty obvious

Cortana is on Windows 10 Mobile and can't be disabled. Shame they don't sell phones any more. I have one and it works extremely well, with monthly updates of the OS.

That said, I'm still mostly using Windows 7 on PC's but Cortana has now intruded itself into Skype. At least there's a way do refuse its Suggestions.


Re: @Alain - Integration

When was the last time you used yours?

Premiere Pro bug ate my videos! Bloke sues Adobe after greedy 'clean cache' wipes files


It reminds me of when a friend asked me to look at his Windows PC to find out why is was dog slow plus other oddities.

As I would normally do, run antimalware, run chkdsk, run Disk Cleanup.

Oops. he kept his important files in the Recycle Bin on the basis that nobody would look for them there.

We managed to recover some files using undelete tools.

I got blamed, of course.

'Blockchain SAVED my Quango'


Quote of the day

“unlikely to have provided benefits and value for money envisaged at the outset.”

or in simple English

"i've been suckered"


Re: Copyright blockchain?

I ran across a suggestion that Blockchain could be used for land registration. That would fit the high-value low transaction model.

European Union divided over tax on digital tech giants as some member states refuse free money


Revenue (a.k.a. turnover) is already taxed. It's called VAT.

None of this grandstanding considers the obvious counter-strategies the digital companies will adopt.

All companies with shareholders are duty-bound to minimise their costs. One of the ways to do this is to use the existing laws in legal ways.

Until the OECD including Brussels and Washington can agree on a new taxation strategy there will be no real change.

Budget 2018: UK goes it alone on digital sales tax for tech giants


You don't think the companys will trim their profit margin, do you?

Everybody is paying VAT on purchases, so it's not as if the purchasers are buying stuff tax free.

The UK won't get this tax to fly until the OECD creates a level playing field. Now that the USA has reduced its headline corporation tax, there's a chance for this to happen.

Shareholders will be the ones paying any new tax, significant numbers of which are pension funds.

There is no money tree. Ultimately, it's us who pay for all government spending.

With the 6T, OnePlus hopes to shed 'cheeky upstart' tag and launch assault on flagships


Re: No headphone jack

It's one more hole in the case.

Florida man won't be compelled to reveal iPhone passcode, yet


Re: Files are not testimony

In all cases, the accused is being forced to assist the accuser.

This is the underlying basis of the fifth amendment.

That's utterly different from searching a residence.

The basis of this particular case revolves around whether the authorities are looking for specific evidence that they have good reason to believe is present on the device or whether they're simply conducting a fishing expedition seeing what they can find.

Congrats from 123-Reg! You can now pay us an extra £6 or £12 a year for basically nothing


Re: I want to move away

My son, and a friend who manages 3 TLD's himself always recommends Blacknight dot com. They're based in Ireland but handle most domains.

Core-blimey! Riddle of Earth's mysterious center finally 'solved' by smarty seismologists


I've always imagined the Earth's crust and plate tectonics like a very slowly moving pot of porridge. The "soft" core might be imagined as a soggy lump.

SCISYS sidesteps Brexit: Proposes Irish listing to keep EU space work rolling in


Move head office to Dundalk (south). Only 14 miles to Newry (north). Wonderful countryside and coast nearby. Trains to Dublin or Belfast. Drive to Dublin Airport in 45 minutes.

Microsoft points to a golden future where you can make Windows 10 your own


Re: I Will Fucking Murder Mail

Surely, that's an Adobe issue.

I keep a clean desktop without icons and with a solid-colour background. My annoyance is apps and updates that plant an icon on my desktop that I then need to remove.


I've used every version of Windows since 3.0, DOS before that and Mainframe since 1967, etc. Windows 7 edged out Windows 2000 (didn't like XP) and Windows 10 can be tamed without much effort.

I'd like to drop Xbox but only Cortana annoys me. Telemetry doesn't worry me too much as the UK is such a surveilance state already that nobody has any secrets any more. The ad-flingers don't impact me much as I de-personalise Firefox and don't actually *see* the ads anyway.


Re: Deinstall parts of W10?

All safe in your bunker under the Rocky Mountains? ;)

Huge ice blades on Jupiter’s Europa will make it a right pain in the ASCII to land on


Re: Re. Icebreaker

More than a few hours, if the ice crust is as thick as projected. The same concept was suggested as a way to go deep into the Earth. Pressure is another major issue.

Chinese Super Micro 'spy chip' story gets even more strange as everyone doubles down


Re: Why are ICs always in large packages, how is this dot powered?

You pose an interesting challenge. There is a huge amount of energy of all sorts sloshing around inside a computer. Vibration/noise, electromangnetic hum, etc. The antenna could be the motherboard itself, the chassis, the earth lead.

Then again, there are easier ways to do this.

I prefer the story that it's a what-if that's been converted to a this-happened. Maybe the real motive is to reduce the trust and thereby the usage of Chinese computer equipment.

Rookie almost wipes customer's entire inventory – unbeknownst to sysadmin


Re: And then billed 3 extra hours?

as opposed to changing a bit to enable a feature which wasn't previously being paid for?

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


Microsoft's not the only one. Google latest wheeze on Gmail is to put infantile "Smart Reply" buttons whenever you respond to an email. The mobile and tablet versions allow you to disable it but the desktop version does not.

Of course they use American English including slang.

Overexcitable UK ads regulator gabbles that Amazon broke EU law


Re: Throw the book at them... Please

I keep breaking mine.

Nameless Right To Be Forgotten Google sueball man tries Court of Appeal – yet again

This post has been deleted by a moderator

Contractors slam UK taxman's 'aggressive' IR35 tax reforms


HMRC are effectively being directed by the UK Government to wipe out most self-employed workers and force them to be employees (wage slaves).

Developer goes rogue, shoots four colleagues at ERP code maker


Re: "you and a dozen of your friends are going to overpower the US military"

The French did send troops and warships. Without them, the revolution might have failed.


Re: A gun is involved in every single mass shooting.

Almost by definition. Shooting could involve arrows but I haven't heard of any mass shootings by bow and arrow.

Brits pay £490m extra for mobes they already own – Citizens Advice


Re: Let them pay

You're confusing manufacturer's warranty with third-party extended warranty via the shop.

I've never paid for extra insurance but I know people who do and have successfully claimed on it during the period. I also know of people who *accidentally* find the device has stopped working when it's approaching the end of the warrenty or extended warrenty period.

It depends on your attitude to insurance and how hard you are on your equipment.


Re: Let them pay

Your dishwasher seller is using deliberate obfuscation by leaving you to think they are selling you 5 year support instead of the 3 you're actually receiving.


Re: Astonishing isn't it

The problem with calling the company is that you reach a call centre who can't deal with your account.

You need to go round in circles until it gets escalated to the relevant finance team. This may even need to be raised as a formal dispute and involve the company appointed ombudsman, who will have the power to check the facts and chase the finance team.

When I went down this path the ombudsman judged in my favour but the finance team then produced incorrect information to cancel what the ombudsman said. Only a second session with the ombudsman resulted in me being correctly treated.

At that point the operator decided to pay me the refund but then chose to cancel the contract with immediate effect.


Re: Astonishing isn't it

I'm surprised that somebody hasn't taken the operator to court for charging for a service that's not being delivered.

There must be some clever weasel-words in the contract.

TV Licensing admits: We directed 25,000 people to send their bank details in the clear



Unless the government decides to fund the BBC directly, thereby making those of us who don't need a licence to pay into the fund.

The BBC is quite capable of funding itself through advertising. It happily does this for all of its overseas businesses. Channel 4 is owned by the government but doesn't receive a subsidy.


I received the letter, contacted them by phone and explained that I have various equipment such as a screen, laptop and smartphone, each of which is capable of being used to watch broadcast television.

As the current rule is that one must watch broadcast television or use iPlayer to view BBC output, being capable of watching is not the same as actually watching.

I don't watch television but do use a Sky box to listen to radio.

I now have a letter from them titled "Your No Licence Needed confirmation".

At no time did I give my name.

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


Re: More bloat in an already over bloated OS

Your computer, your choice of operating system.

Their operating system, what's wrong with offering a one-time suggestion?

AI beats astroboffins at sniffing out fast radio bursts amid the universe's clutter


Re: AI beat astroboffins at detecting fast radio bursts?

Surely we need to last for 6 billion years for our message to be sent and the answer received.

(Shades of The Sirens of Titan by Kurt Vonnegut)

Boffins bash Google Translate for sexism


Re: The reverse problem exists, too

Even skilled translators have to make guesses when translating from gender neutral languages. Without significant context, it remains a guess.


Re: What's the problem here?

Since when has "they" become singular?

Pluto is more alive than Mars, huff physicists who are still not over dwarf planet's demotion


Re: Confused

Don't forget that Pluto was discovered by an American. Losing "planet" status meant loss of face.

Since it is about one sixth of the mass of the Moon and 0.2% of the earth, it's not a major planet. Labelling Pluto, Eris etc as minor or dwarf planets, or "plutoids" seems a fair compromise.

PPI pushers now need consent to cold-call you


Invoking "personal privacy" is complete nonsense. They're an organisation, not an individual. The reason they withhold the number is that they don't want you to be able to call them and reach the correct department. Much better to leave you to call the main number and fight your way through layers of menus and verbiage.


I've had legitimate calls from withheld numbers. I know they're legitimate because it's in response to an issue I'd raised and was expecting a call-back.

Even my bank tried that and asked me for security details. I explain that I never give security details to anyone who calls me, only to people I've called. In most cases they fully understand this. I can only think of one example, where I had terminated a mobile phone contract. Their number was not withheld but was unrecognised by my phone's address book. The guy got very annoyed when I refused to give any security details. On looking up the number later, it was their outsourced "retention team".

Canny Brits are nuking the phone bundle


Re: Telefonica own O2 and GiffGaff, so this is nothing new for them

Google "Is ID Mobile, part of the Carphone Warehouse group, an MVN?" and it tells you Three. Simples.


Re: Customers are (slightly) more savvy and the technology isn't moving as quickly

At end of contract, simply ask for the PAC to move your number to a different provider. They won't put you on to the porting team but to the retention team. Insist that you want to leave and eventually they'll offer you a much better deal. If they don't, you could always switch providers or even look what the best new deal is from your existing one.

Make sure you've done your research first (as always).

Mozilla changes Firefox policy from ‘do not track’ to ‘will not track’


Re: That's kinda the minimalist solution

How foreign is foreign? .com when browsing from the UK? Canada from the USA? Using a VPN to disguise your own location? Disguised server IP location?

Don't forget that .com does not mean USA but simply "commercial".


That's one of the reasons Bill Gates invested in Apple when it was on the slide (while Steve Jobs was elsewhere). Not the only reason, but simply one of them.

Bitcoin backer sues AT&T for $240m over stolen cryptocurrency


Where's the evidence

I'd be very interested in knowing how he can prove how much was in the wallet before the transfer and how much remains.

Why is this AT&T's issue rather than the coin repository? They are the ones with the 2FA security that's allegedly been broken.


Not in the stores I've used. Simply go in, get a pay-as-you-go SIM and pay the minimum. In fact, you don't even need to pay the minimum. Once you know the number, it will receive SMS without having any credit.


Re: Or maybe an insider job

Insider job where you'd tried it once, found out the weaknesses in the system then went for the big one.

Drama as boffins claim to reach the Holy Grail of superconductivity


Re: Extraordinary claims—

If there is any validity in these claims, even to the point where superconductivity was present at 77K (liquid nitrogen), the usefulness is still heavily constrained by the maximum current density achievable.

Bank on it: It's either legal to port-scan someone without consent or it's not, fumes researcher


Re: CMA is overzealous

The CPS should not add new rules to the law but suggest that the law be revised to include more sensible rules.


Re: Code

It's certainly only for their benefit. If it was for your benefit, they'd inform you that you were at risk.


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