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Renewables Are Now Scotland's Biggest Energy Source

Trevelyan Re:Too late (235 comments)

I know you were joking, but I'd like to make the following point anyway:

How long until we have fusion power is not a function of time, but a function of investment.
Insufficient/deacreasing investment results in increasing the amount of time needed to complete the required R&D.

In fact a Q&A here on slashdot covered this. It even provided the following graphic as clarification of "50 years until fusion":

about 2 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Can You Say Something Nice About Systemd?

Trevelyan Systemd broken PulseAudio!!! (928 comments)

I have a Debian HTPC system tracking testing and systemd tried to save from the indignation of PulseAudio. Given configuring ALSA for AC3 S/PDIF is not as easy as it should be, I let PulseAudio stay on my system.

Then came systemd and any application (Flash, KDE itself, VLC) would hang as soon as it attempted to output sound. "PulseAudio --start" instances would just multiply and multiply.

My girlfriend was somewhat annoyed that she couldn't watch her programmes, and trying to work out what was happening was getting to me too.

After battling PulseAudio and ALSA settings, I was started to question if it was a mistake to leave PulseAudio installed all this time. Systemd was trying to help me see my error.

However given my girlfriends mood and lack of patience, as well as the fact that everything worked before Debian switch my init system, I tried apt-get install sysvinit-core and reboot (mostly out of desperation). From that moment on we've had no problem with sound, PulseAudio nor any of the other 'bugs' that showed up recently.

Given my sense of humour, I find it hilarious that systemd seemingly broke PulseAudio. Beyond making me laugh it also induces a sense of nostalgia. As I was in Uni all those years ago, I remember playing CoreWars. This was a game where two users would to develop a programmes that tried to avoid and eradicate the other users program.

Up until I removed systemd I imagine a similar battle being waged on my HTPC. PulseAudio battling with PID 0 and spawning many copies of itself as protection. On the other side systemd using it ultimate control of the system to hijack dbus and udev in order to isolate PulseAudio and to prevent it from communicating with the outside world.

If it weren't for the non-amused look on my girlfriends face, I might have let the two battle it out. However as it stands PulseAudio has won, as systemd is no longer running on the system. Did good or evil win? We'll never know. Suffice to say during the whole affair systemd said nothing, not a single peep to stdout nor stderr.

about 3 months ago

The Old Reader To Close Public Site In Two Weeks (Unless It Doesn't)

Trevelyan OwnCloud News (93 comments)

With the close of google reader I switched to OwnCloud News running on my own hardware.

Pro: Not reliant on others, Con: I only have myself to blame if I go offline =)

about a year ago

Birthday Song's Copyright Leads To a Lawsuit For the Ages

Trevelyan Re:We need more than that (442 comments)

In the US because of the Mickey Mouse Protection Act or rather the Copyright Term Extension Act.

Basically every time Mickey Mouse is about to go out of copyright and into the public domain, Disney lobby for copyright to be extended.

Given that they actively use MM, their Trade Mark on him will never expire. Isn't that enough? Why continuously extend copyright?

about a year and a half ago

Slashdot Asks: How Will You Replace Google Reader?

Trevelyan OwnCloud News (335 comments)

I have an instance of OwnCloud setup at home. I use it mostly for syncing contact and calendar data. I'm even subscribed to my girlfriends calendar and vice versa. The WebDav part I only really use as a quick way to get files from one device to another, and by device I mean smartphone, tablets as well as proper computers.

When Google announced the closure of Reader, OwnCloud started work on a news reader app too. I've been running it since the beta and I'm very happy.

about a year and a half ago

Canonical Announces Mir: A New Display Server Not On X11 Or Wayland

Trevelyan Re:wayland's flopping, lets try again! (354 comments)

Here is a rather long IRC discussion between the Wayland and a Mir developer(s) on why..

AFAI can tell, a year ago when Canocial/Ubutunu were deciding which way to go, they stopped believing that Wayland would mature into something that fits their grand plans. Instead of discussing these concerns with the wayland people, they decided to fork Android's graphic stack. (and thus be able to talk to all the ARM SoC blob drivers that support it).

So we're going to get one Unity/Mir/Ubuntu stack on everything from Phones to Desktops....

In the end none of their concerns about wayland turned out to be valid. Daniel Stone even has a compositor that does server-side buffer allocation and runs on said ARM SoC h/w. None of the insecure wayland input remarks on Mir's wiki are true, etc.. Not that it matters now, Ubuntu have already invested in Mir and will likely continue to do so; it will after all, being under their control, no doubt fit perfectly into their grand plans.

about 2 years ago

Can You Do the Regular Expression Crossword?

Trevelyan star * (115 comments)

Most of the regex are qulified with a star *, which mean 0 or more times. So since the regex allows 0 matches I can put in whatever I like. Maybe they meant + ? I'm not going to look at the solution. I will just concentrate on the few chars that are not suffixed by a * .

about 2 years ago

James Bond Film Skyfall Inspired By Stuxnet Virus

Trevelyan An exercise in suspending disbelief.. (187 comments)

To enjoy the film, which I did, I had to actively ignore anything that was said in relational to IT. Something that I find hard to do.

The concept behind the plot, while at the most extreme of technical possibility, was a valid idea to explore in a piece of fiction. The Iranians would likely have never detected stuxnet if its 'herders' had kept a better control on its spreading. Imagine something like that in a western government (as the victim). No, what annoyed me most is that they didn't even bother. Simply swapping some of the IT buzzwords in the script for ones that actually meant something in the given context, would have greatly improved its palatability. However that would mean employing someone with real IT knowledge on the writing team. Such a person might have gone insane or have made the script 'boring' with too much attention to accuracy, who knows.

One theory I had when leaving the film, was that maybe the makers didn't want to give the general public any ideas or tips in how someone would go about achieving any of the anarchy portrayed in the film. The more misinformed about computer 'hacking' the safer we'll all be...

more than 2 years ago

Wayland 1.0 Released, Not Yet Ready To Replace X11

Trevelyan Missunderstanding the issues (455 comments)

The two main complaints I see discussed here appear to derive from some fundamental misunderstandings about what Wayland is.

Wayland is a Protocol and an optional helper library to implementing that protocol. This protocol says nothing about net work transparency, in both the sense of enabling or prohibiting it. It also says nothing about client decorations. The key points here is not to make a decision for or against any particular technology or methodology and then be stuck with that decision for the next 20 years, like we are with X.

How or if, either of these work is all down to the compositor. The reference compositor 'Weston' does not do network transparency and leaves window decoration to the client or its toolkit. However none of the big desktops, i.e end users, will be using this compositor. For example KDE will continue to use Kwin as their wayland compositor, and KDE have already clearly said that Kwin will be decorating their windows and not the clients!

As to network transparency, all windows are drawn to their own back buffers, and where these buffers will be eventually displayed is also the choice of the compositor, and it might well just decided to send them over a network connection. e.g. like what VNC does.

I think if you base your opinion on what other people say, including me, then maybe you shouldn't comment? All of this is discussed first hand on the Wayland web site and/or mailing list.

Unfortunately since I've posted a bit late, I doubt many will read this...

more than 2 years ago

DOJ Says iPhone Is So Secure They Can't Crack It

Trevelyan False sense of security? (454 comments)

Most people use the standard 4 digit pin, this pin unlocks the keys to the encrypted FS.

With physical access to the phone, one can brute force a 4 digit numeric pin in about 20mins. The brute force has to be done on the phone itself, because you can't access the keys directly, but rather the API of the crypto chip. So you boot your brute force boot image via DFU mode. This of course bypasses any wipe on X failed attempts settings that might have been set in iOS.

Alphanumeric PINs are a PITA, so I'd suggest using a 7 or more digit numeric PIN. This is done by turning off simple passcode and then entering a passcode with only numbers (dispite the full keyboard). When asked for the passcode again to unlock the iPhone will give the normal numbers keypad. (Telling a hacker that your pins only uses numbers, but also make your life much easier).

more than 2 years ago

Reports Say Apple Is Shrinking Its Docking Connector With iPhone 5

Trevelyan Re:Standard connectors? LOL you wish! (427 comments)

I am pretty sure the MicroUSB connector is now required in the EU.

Maybe a mircousb plug will fit it for USB and power, but the official Apple plug will have more contacts on it for other functions.

more than 2 years ago

Oracle-Google Trial Won't Start Until Next Year

Trevelyan Pre-judged? (60 comments)

"In the final stage, 'all remaining issues will be tried, including damages and willfulness.'"

Wouldn't using the word 'wilfulness' suggest he already thinks Google did something wrong?
You or I may or may not think that, but a judge should try to remain neutral. Maybe a 'if needed be' or some such context was cut out of the quote.

more than 3 years ago

Galileo To Be Europe's Answer To US GPS

Trevelyan Independant of the US? (402 comments)

Didn't the US push the EU to allow them to be able to downgrade the Galileo signal, effectively giving the US a Galileo veto?

At least that's my memory from, I think, 2004.

more than 3 years ago

Moxie Marlinspike's Solution To the SSL CA Problem

Trevelyan Re:Pooling Opinions... (189 comments)

Well one interesting configuration is to use untrustable notaries (or notaries using untrustable sources), such PRC, DHS, FSB, etc. If any one is trying to trick you with a fake certificate for a MITM attacks, the others are not likely to agree that the certificate is genuine. Unless you believe such state powers would co-operate on getting at your encrypted sessions.

more than 3 years ago

External Thunderbolt Graphics Card On Its Way

Trevelyan Thunderbolt == Docking port (207 comments)

Apple hasn't marketed as such, as least not in this neck of the woods, but Thunderbolt is clearly a Docking port. The first one ever on a MacBook!! (That I know of)

Take a look at their new Thunderbolt display. With one cable connection, your MacBook gets network, sound, firewire, USB and power(!), all via your external Display. No need to attach a second cable.

Considering that Thunderbolt already is a DisplayPort connection, I don't see the benefit of connection a second graphics card over the PCI-e connection. Some says to have a more powerfull card, over 4x PCIs 2.0?, for games. However lots of suppliers have hard PCexpress (also on MacBooks) GFX cards, but none work with Macs because Apple wont play fair with regards to GFX drivers in OS X.

In the end, to be honest, I find it far more exciting that I can finally replace the 8 cables that I have to plug into my MacBook with just one.

more than 3 years ago

My phone is ...

Trevelyan Re:Initial unlocked numbers a bit surprising (274 comments)

A lot of European countries have Laws that say the phone must be unlocked after the initial contract is finished.

My GF had a very old little Nokia feature phone, which she recently decided she wanted to give to her parents. The operator had to send it off and post it back to her, because its one of those Nokias that have no unlock code. However to her it was all free, regardless of her being a customer or not!

AFAIK in Italy your not allowed to sell locked phones. A lot of the unlocked iPhones in the EU come from Italy.

more than 3 years ago

Cisco Linksys Routers Still Don't Support IPv6

Trevelyan Re:Summary is false (380 comments)

I have IPv6 through my WRT610N too. However I'm not sure if that is a feature from cisco, or a by-product of the linux kernel used in the official firmware.

One thing of note is the complete lack of IPv6 options in the user interface. Also as far as I can tell the various services in the router do not support IPv6 either (can you access the web interface via IPv6?).

I do have serial access, but I have check to see if netfilters is configured for ipv6. My guess is no, so your/my IPv6 access is unfiltered/unprotected.

So I am left with my original thought, it's not an intended nor a supported feature. Just an accident due to the linux kernel.

more than 3 years ago



Marlinspike's solution to the SSL CA problem

Trevelyan Trevelyan writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Trevelyan (535381) writes "In his Blackhat talk on the past and future of SSL (you can find the video and slide if you really try, or just buy them from BH) Moxie Marlinspike explains the problems of SSL today, and the history of how it came to be so. He then goes on to not only propose a soution, but he's implemented it as well: Convergence, it'll let you turn off all those untrustable CAs in you browser and still safely use HTTPS. It even works with self-signed certificates. You still need to trust someone, but not forever like CAs. The system has 'Notaries', which you can ask anonymously for their view on a certificates authenticity. You can pool Notaries for a consensus, and add/remove them at any time."
Link to Original Source

Nintendo (risks) bricking Wii's in attempt to bloc

Trevelyan Trevelyan writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Trevelyan writes "Nintendo have just released a new update to all Wii's: System Menu 4.2. It appears the sole purpose of this update is to remove all "unauthorised" installed software and attempt to close any bug that might be used to reinstall them. This includes updating the boot loader. However Nintendo's update code is not as robust as that of the Bootmii installer, thus if the update does not go smoothly your wii will be bricked (regardless of if you have unauthorised software or not). Team tweezers have already released an updated installer to give you a version of the Homebrew Channel that will survive Nintendo's update, however your bootloader can not be protected."
Link to Original Source

Trevelyan Trevelyan writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Trevelyan writes "An interesting look at the USA in terms of published rankings and stats: "No concept lies more firmly embedded in our national character than the notion that the USA is 'No. 1,' ... Yet the delusion is ineradicable. We're No. 1. Well...this is the country you really live in""


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