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Surface RT Devices Won't Get Windows 10

Bearhouse You have been Zuned (158 comments)

Should have been fairly obvious, I would have thought, that the bastard child would be soon abandoned. The coffin lid was pretty-well nailed down from the start due to lack of application support, so it was more like WindowsCE (aka "wince").

Mind you, Google is hardly better - plenty of Android phones & tablets out there with no upgrade path, (yes, often because of the constructors or carriers crapware, I know). Also, don't bother trying to get iOS to run on an iPhone 4s or iPad 2 (I did - devices were virtually unusable).

about a week ago
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Simon Pegg On Board To Co-Write Next Star Trek Film

Bearhouse So it's a comedy franchise now? (138 comments)

I like Simon Pegg, but I'm not sure if his writing CV is best suited for the genre...

about a week ago
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IRS Warns of Downtime Risk As Congress Makes Cuts

Bearhouse Well, cry me a river... (253 comments)

Poor babies, so they'll have to get by with just 12.5 Bn in 2015...your tax dollars at work.

about a week ago
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Moscow To Track Cell-phone Users In 2015 For Traffic Analysis

Bearhouse Seems a rather weak excuse (63 comments)

Yes, gathering anonymous data, (good luck with that) can be a very helpful and cheap way of gathering real-time data on traffic flows. However, as anyone who spent some time in Moscow can attest, the traffic is basically in gridlock everywhere most of the time, with the worst pinch points being damn obvious to anyone...

about two weeks ago
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Washington DC's Public Library Will Teach People How To Avoid the NSA

Bearhouse How depressing... (81 comments)

That learning how to protect your privacy from quasi-legal Govt. data harvesting could now be considered "subversive"

about two weeks ago
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Where Cellular Networks Don't Exist, People Are Building Their Own

Bearhouse ..cheaper than almost anywhere else in Mexico (104 comments)

Well, that's not surprising since it's a virtual monopoly controlled by one of the world's richest men; Carlos Slim.

{snip} Telmex, of which 49.1% is owned by Slim and his family, charges among the highest usage fees in the world, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

about two weeks ago
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MI5 Chief Seeks New Powers After Paris Magazine Attack

Bearhouse Parent is NOT insightful (319 comments)

Rubbish. Whilst I agree that a lot of the recent abuses of power are inexcusable, the job of the security forces is not easy.

Lack of resources mean that they cannot be physically watching every suspect all the time, (probably a good thing, you might say).

So, what do you do with the people who meet your criteria, (and there are many of them). Detain them without trial?

about three weeks ago
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Russia Says Drivers Must Not Have "Sex Disorders" To Get License

Bearhouse Re:Russians, help me understand (412 comments)

Resident or expats, please try to fill in the blanks.

Is there simply enough anti-homosexual bias in Russian culture, as in much of the USofA, for Putin to make political "points" by picking on them?

Lived and worked there for a while.
Short answer is "yes". Putin flogs the image of the bare-chested "hero" and protector of family "values".
(The reality of course is that he's a botoxed crooked womanizer...)

But note: Most educated middle-class Russians detest Putin and his clique and are pretty nice people on the whole. Unfortunately, they're also mostly very racist and homophobic, (including the women). Of course, the same applies to many other places; India and the South of the USA spring to mind...

about three weeks ago
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Study: 15 Per Cent of Business Cloud Users Have Been Hacked

Bearhouse Re:Achilles heel of the cloud apps.... (72 comments)

Also, often the cost savings are a myth, especially for larger organisations.
I ran the numbers for one of my customers recently - an Exec had suddenly decided that since "everyone" else had Salesforce, they must have it too.
Replacing their existing well-crafted and nicely integrated CRM with SF would have cost a bomb in transition costs, with higher annual maintenance, for LESS functionality.

Needless to say the boss killed that "good idea" pretty quick.

about three weeks ago
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Russia Says Drivers Must Not Have "Sex Disorders" To Get License

Bearhouse Sadly, this will probably be popular in Russia. (412 comments)

Which is the point...Putin is an unreconstructed Chekist and will continue to distract his oppressed population with this and other nonsense, plus of course more serious meddling like Ukraine and Syria.
Since the average Russian is typically homophobic, racist, and "patriotic", this is an easy play.
Putin is mired in corruption, has totally failed to deliver on economic & political reforms and re-balancing the economy and the Ruble is tanking in the wake of falling oil prices.

So expect plenty more of this rubbish.

Actually improving road safety would involve "hard" stuff like tackling endemic police and court corruption, drink driving (although the legal limit is theoretically zero), anti-social attitudes and quasi-mafia idiots driving too fast in SUVs equipped with automatic weapons and large lights on the back specifically designed to blind people following them.

Ever wondered why you see so many youtube videos of "funny" things on Russian roads? It's because many people have dashboard cams to support their case with the insurance company when the inevitable accident happens; it really is that bad.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Are Progressive Glasses a Mistake For Computer Users?

Bearhouse They don't work for me (464 comments)

Just as you, on "expert" advice I got some progressives...hate them. The "sweet spot" is just too small.

I now have a pair just for screen work; much, much better.

Thinking of getting laser corrective surgery, then will need a pair just for close reading.

about a month ago
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2014: The Year We Learned How Vulnerable Third-Party Code Libraries Are

Bearhouse What utter bullshit (255 comments)

2014: The Year We Learned How Vulnerable Third-Party Code Libraries Are

Really? Like we did not know before?
I don't think anyone in the industry who is both sane and honest ever pretended that FOSS was bug-free.
We know that software, ALL software, contains bugs.
Also, plenty of projects don't have too many contributors, so the "many eyes" principle hardly applies.

But if you've got the source at least you can have a look, (and really should, if you are considring using something for a mission-critcal application).
Then fix, if required,and contrib back.

Certainly, vulnerabilities in FOSS stuff tend to get fixed pretty quickly when found.

about a month ago
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2015 Means EU Tax Increase On Cloud Storage, E-books and Smartphone Applications

Bearhouse Re:should five per cent appear to small (164 comments)

I know you're baiting, but for heaven's sake, which part of Europe are you in? Most of my family is scattered around Europe and I know that we all "enjoy":

1. Very high direct and indirect taxes / social charges, which fail to fully finance,
2. Massively oversized and inefficient public sector organisations, especially in healthcare and education, (tip: if you want "good" either of those two over here, you'd better have plenty of cash),
3. Zero or negative growth, leading to,
4. Massive public debts.

Yeah, we like it that way...

about a month ago
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Russia Plans To Build World First DNA Databank of All Living Things

Bearhouse "430 sq km in size"...Bullshit (83 comments)

So that's what, a little more than 20Km per side; if it's a sqaure block? Not happening anywhere, especially in Russia since the currency tanked.

Also, storing something as tiny as DNA requires little space...

about 1 month ago
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Study of Massive Preprint Archive Hints At the Geography of Plagiarism

Bearhouse Study pinpoints "lazy" authors too (53 comments)

about one in 16 arXiv authors were found to have copied long phrases and sentences from their own previously published work

OK, sometimes quoting your own work may be legit, but this sounds more like simple boilerplate cut and paste

about a month and a half ago
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Army Building an Airport Just For Drones

Bearhouse Re:And knowing is half the battle (48 comments)

The FAA is an example of regulatory capture. It is run by aviators for the interest of pilots and aviation companies

I guess you've never heard that very old GA joke, "I'm from the FAA and I'm here to help you..."

about a month and a half ago
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Google News To Shut Down In Spain On December 16th

Bearhouse Re:They will either change their mind (183 comments)

Or they'll double-down and use the subsequent tanking of their sites as "proof" for the EU Gov that Google is an "unfair monopoly".

How could this play out?
Step one : We poor, highly-taxed Europeans will be asked to dip once again into our empty pockets, this time to fund a bunch of over over-paid bureaucrats while they "investigate" Google,
Step two: They'll recommend that we subsidise a state-sponsored European alternative to Google, which will fail.

Don't laugh - they're mad enough to try it.

about a month and a half ago
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It's Not Developers Slowing Things Down, It's the Process

Bearhouse Say no, nobody listens... (186 comments)

Sure, people at all levels should be encouraged to say "no" if other things are wrong too; for example choice of architecture, data model, choice of development environment, language or database...

Unfortunately, I've seen too many projects where people - including me - said "no" very loudly on these and similar issues and...were ignored.

Hilarity ensued.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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Study shows most controversial pages on Wikipedia, by country.

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  about a year and a half ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "Researchers have identified the most-edited pages in Wikipedia — the subject of so-called 'Wikiwars'.
It's interesting to see how these differ by country; in the USA, GWB tops the list.
For the Czech republic, it's homosexuality.
Regarding Germany, 9/11 conspiracy theories are in third place, after Croatia and Scientology.
Just as weird and interesting as Wikipedia itself."

Link to Original Source
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What do you buy a 90 year old, tech-savy Dad who has everything?

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "My Dad amazes me with (a) his longevity & energy, and (b) his continued ability to mess around with electronics stuff. Since he already has things ranging from valve amps made from war-surplus, via an original IBM PC kit to an Android tablet, I was going to buy him a Raspberry Pi for Christmas. Turns out he's already got one. I saw nothing that really got me excited in the attached link, so your ideas would be appreciated, thanks."
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Instagram has updated its privacy policy giving it the right to sell users' phot

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "From the BBC: Unless users delete their Instagram accounts by a deadline of 16 January, they cannot opt out. The changes also mean Instagram can share information about its users with Facebook, its parent company, as well as other affiliates and advertisers.
The move riled social media users, with some likening it to a "suicide note". The new policies follow Facebook's record $1bn (£616m; 758 euro) acquisition of Instagram in April. Facebook's vice-president of global marketing solutions Carolyn Everson earlier this month had said: "Eventually we'll figure out a way to monetise Instagram."

I'm not sure the many young users of Instagram will be too happy when their pictures start showing up in ads."

Link to Original Source
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Credit card has display, acts as security token

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 2 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "From the BBC:

A credit card with an LCD display and built-in keyboard has been launched in Singapore by Mastercard.

The card has touch-sensitive buttons and the ability to create a "one-time password" — doing away with the need for a separate device sometimes needed to log in to online banking.

"We brainstormed on ways to make it convenient and yet secure for customers," said V Subba from Standard Chartered Bank, which is collaborating with Mastercard.

"The question was: instead of sending customers another bulky token, could we replace something which already exists in the customer's wallet?"

Sounds convenient but perhaps less secure than having a separate device...I also wonder how robust it will be?"

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Good summary on IBM, Microsoft, Oracle and SAP str

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "Won't be a surprise for regular readers, but there's a good summary from Gartner here of how IT VPs should be wary of, amongst other things, SAP's rather opaque pricing and Oracle's poor interoperability. Also, how IBM is more interested in taking over your company's IT strategy than it is in delivering solutions.

http://www.itnews.com.au/News/280268,the-truth-about-ibm-microsoft-oracle-and-sap.aspx"

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First accidental collision between two satellites

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The Guardian reports: '..a 12-year-old satellite belonging to the US company Iridium and a defunct Russian Cosmos satellite that was put into orbit in 1993...which weighed 560kg and 950kg respectively, apparently smashed into each other at a speed of 420 miles per minute (25,000mph).' 'Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Les Kodlick of the US strategic command, said: "We believe it's the first time that two satellites have collided in orbit." The command's joint space operations centre was tracking 500 to 600 new bits of debris, some as small as 10cm (3.9 inches) across, in addition to the 18,000 or so other man-made objects it has catalogued, he said.' Read more here: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/feb/12/nasa-alert-as-satellites-collide"
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ISP confirmed throttling bandwidth in Canada

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  about 6 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "Amongst others, Ars Technica reports the results of a survey of the country's ISPs by Canada's Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC). The results "make clear just how widespread deep packet inspection (DPI) has become at Canadian ISPs". Read me here: http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20090121-how-canadian-isps-throttle-the-internet.html With a user-generated summary of the responses here, (leads to a 50-page PDF) http://www.christopher-parsons.com/blog/archives/370"
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Update on mystery Peruvian meteroite

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The BBC has an update on the story that provoked a lot of comment here a while back. It's rather more thorough than the usual BBC article, so interesting. "Now experts say the event challenges conventional theories about meteorites. The object which came down in the Puno region of Peru was a relatively fragile stony meteorite. During the fiery descent through Earth's atmosphere, these are thought to fragment into smaller pieces which then scatter over a wide area. Yet pieces of the estimated 1m-wide meteorite are thought to have stayed together during entry, hitting the ground as one. There was a lot of discussion here about reporting toxic side-effects of the strike. FTA: "Reports about arsenic, bubbling [of water in the crater] and sickness were probably overblown. People were frightened, but some were also afraid they were under attack from a nearby country." A bull's horn was, however, confirmed as ripped off... For more, see http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7292863.stm"
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Chemical 'brain' invented for nanobot control

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The BBC reports that "A tiny chemical "brain" which could one day act as a remote control for swarms of nano-machines has been invented." See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7288426.stm. "The machine is made from 17 molecules of the chemical duroquinone. Each one is known as a "logic device". They each resemble a ring with four protruding spokes that can be independently rotated to represent four different states. The molecular device — just two billionths of a metre across — was able to control eight of the microscopic machines simultaneously. Writing in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, scientists say it could also be used to boost the processing power of future computers.""
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EU rules that Microsoft breaks antitrust rules

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The BBC reports that "The European Commission has fined US computer giant Microsoft for defying sanctions imposed on it for anti-competitive behaviour. Microsoft must now pay 899 million euros ($1.4bn; £680.9m) after it failed to comply with a 2004 ruling that it took part in monopolistic practices. The ruling said that Microsoft was guilty of not providing vital information to rival software makers. EU regulators said the firm was the first to break an EU antitrust ruling." See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/7266629.stm What — if anything — do you think this will further ruling will change? What 'vital information' would you want?"
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Internet-censorship avoidance nominated for prize

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "Picidae, http://picidae.net/, is the latest in the cat-and-mouse game of censors and hole finders / makers. The inventors have tested it for three weeks in China, and so far claim to have gotten round the 'great firewall'. If you invoke a pici-server a form field appears to fill in a web address. The pici-server then creates an image of that website and sends this back. Works as advertised, (until it gets /.ed, I guess). You can added your own pici-server to help out. It's been nominated for a Transmediale prize: http://www.transmediale.de/site/award/nominated-works/ From the nomination: Christoph Wachter / Mathias Jud (de/ch): picidae (Community Network, Installation, 2007) "picidae" creates a server community which breaks national firewalls by redelivering complete, readable and hyperlinked images of blocked web sites. How long before it gets blocked, and how?"
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As predicted, update bad for unlocked iPhones

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "As widely predicted, it's now being reported by the BBC, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/technology/7017660.stm, and the NYT, http://tinyurl.com/25sgxe, that upgrading your unlocked iPhone is not good news. Anybody surprised?

Following on from earlier posts here about the legality of unlocking your iPhone, what's your opinion on the legality of Apple bricking it for you with an upgrade? Do you think this is a bad way for Apple to build customer loyalty with an increasingly tech-savy user base, who like to add applications to their personal devices? Or do you think it's good, bearing in mind that mobile phones are being hyped as the next payment method, and so need to be secure?"

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Getting the most out of Lotus Notes

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "One of my clients, a major international, wants to get control over its email. IT support is outsourced, and poor. At the moment, they've launched a small project to deal with 'excessive' volumes of mails — some people receive over 300 per day! Although many of the users are engineers, they typically are not well-trained in Notes, and do not tend to use its advanced features. The in-house team they've put together has come up with suggestions like, "let's force people to click on confirmation dialogs when they hit 'reply to all', or have big attachments". I'm not sure this is the way to go. Anybody here have any ideas to help, please? Also, what tools would readers suggest to structure and 'mine' the vast quantity of mails that are generated each year? At the moment, this information goes totally unused..."
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Future of Netradio may depend on DRM adoption

Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "ars technica reports that the planned tripling of royalties for US-based net radios may be postponed, but at a price. From the article, "SoundExchange has offered to cap the $500 per channel minimum fee at $50,000 per year for webcasters who agree to provide more detailed reporting of the music that they play and work to stop users from engaging in 'streamripping' — turning Internet radio performances into a digital music library,". Could this mean a return to 'pirate radio', with sites moving offshore?"
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Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The folks over at Wired publish the results of surveying some popular US-based ISPs. The results are patchy. Some ISPs only responded to a few questions, and others not at all. Of those that did respond, some keep record of IPs allocated, and URLs visited, for up to six months. Seems a tempting target for both black hats and law enforcers. Who'll get your browsing history first? Read more at http://www.wired.com/politics/onlinerights/news/20 07/05/isp_privacy"
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Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The original report, regarding the loss of the ashes of the late Star Trek actor James Doohan, (Scotty), got a lot of press here. Well, the BBC is reporting that they've been found, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/6671887.s tm From the article, 'before his death — at the age of 85 — two years ago, he had asked for his remains to be sent into space....Wende Doohan, James Doohan's widow, told the Associated Press news agency her late husband "probably wished he could have stayed".' How long before we have the option of being 'buried in space'? Would you advocate / go for it?"
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Bearhouse Bearhouse writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Bearhouse (1034238) writes "The BBC reports, http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/6574175.stm, that Google has seen quarterly profits soar by 69%, boosted by strong advertising revenue. From the article, "[Google] net income climbed to $1bn (£499m) in the first three months of 2007, up from $592m on a year earlier. Google's results contrast sharply with Yahoo, whose sales fell 11% in the first three months of this year. Yahoo's net profit fell to $142m (£71m) for the three months to March 31, compared with $160m a year earlier." Looks like the ultimate 'geeks' are also winning out on the commercial front. Are the 'don't be evil boys' going to challenge the 'evil empire' with, among other things, Google apps? Having crushed the other search apps, and bought out DoubleClick, what's next?"

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