01
Aug
09

Troll of the week #4: the registry is good fun.

I’ve been AWOL for a while so let’s have a bumper pack of trolls for our troubles. How many Windows users ever edit the registry, I wonder? Probably the number is very few. Unfortunately, more people should know how to do this, at least, as editing the registry is often the only way to completely obliterate programmes you have removed. Virus scanners are notorious for this. Still, any how, here’s somebody defending the very worst aspects of Windows. It’s from yet another SJVN article, this one about Canonical offering paid support for desktop users. You wouldn’t expect Windows trolls to care, but apparently not.

Continue reading ‘Troll of the week #4: the registry is good fun.’

30
Jul
09

A Mono proposal

Mono developer Jo Shields has created a couple of Mono-free Ubuntu remixes. Here are the torrent links for i386 and amd64 architectures. There is talk of maintaining a regular Ubuntu edition sans Mono over on the Mono-Nono site. It’s a little unfair to expect Jo to do it all by himself, and it’s a good chance for people suspicious of Mono to do something about it rather than simply grumble about the whole thing. The Ubuntu Technical Board have made it clear that they don’t see inclusion of Mono-stuff in Ubuntu to be that much of a problem, so rather than start another flame war, head on over to Dan Serban’s proposal on the Mono-Nono site and volunteer to help out.

For the uninitiated, Mono is one of those things that people feel… strongly about. People who are ambivalent or even completely apathetic about the whole thing do exist, they just aren’t very vocal about it. Perhaps I should blog about that. Sure, why not?

Diary of someone apathetic about Mono.

As I was making breakfast this morning, I noticed how the scrambled eggs in the pan before me failed to remind me of the great Mono debate. The kettle came to the boil, whistling in that shrill way that’s almost, but not quite, completely unlike the flame wars I hadn’t read the night before. I realised then that I hadn’t thought about Mono for minutes, perhaps even tens of minutes. My girlfriend looked at me in a way that was completely different from the way Miguel de Icaza and Roy Schestowitz would glare at each other if they were thrown to the bottom of a bottomless pit, destined to fight each other to the death for all of eternity.

Err, perhaps not.

19
Jul
09

Troll of the week #3: something lacking

Here’s a nice troll from a rather funny article entitled “Linux Sucks“:

Anonymous July 18, 2009 10:26 AM
[…]

So again, why would you ever want to use Linux, its old, its clunky, and if you use it you lose the advantage of having windows and all its apps, and massive app base, and you are restricted to only using apps available for linux. Which are few a well lacking in quality. (lets be honest here please).

One day you guys will realise that free is not everything, and if your product is free and crap it wont fly. Linux has been going over 17 years now and UNIX far longer. and Yet still your on the bottom of the pool and you see to be very still ?

the other main problem is the linux “community” its degenerated into a cult, and zealots, who think the universe revolves around Linux.

Pretty good effort, there, buddy. The word zealot is presumably the word of the now, seeing as it’s written endlessly these days. It’s always been a favourite word for trolls. It has religous connotations, which certainly helps people characterise Linux users as crazy bastards. And don’t even think about advocating actually using Linux, of all things. Don’t try that unless you want a “peoeple can decide for themselves stop pushingyourbeliefsdopwnpeople’sthroats” speech. Shut it, you morons. This is the internet. YOU CANNOT EMAIL SOMETHING INTO SOMEBODY’S THROAT. Except cum. Sure, esex is every troll’s favourite pastime. That’s probably why so many people come across this blog searching for “hair in boobs” and “reel life girlfriends”. They want a taste of something they can never have, which is silly because throats don’t have any tastebuds. I want hair in boobs, too. It’s only natural.

But seriously, it’s got to the point now where saying something like, “I like Linux,” you will be interrupted with “–FUCK YOU ZEALOT!!!!!” All right, so I’m over the top. Well fuck you. Nobody told you to read this blog. And on to our next quote,

Well fuck you. Nobody told you to read this blog.

What an arsehole, trolling his own audience like that.

And finally for our last troll, I can’t tell if this one is serious or not, but considering this guy was spamming up the tubes with his bile, I’m guessing he’s pretty genuine. If true, then he’s a cunt. From the Linux Today talkback section of an article on Penguin Pete’s blog, in this exerpt he is defending dodgy business practices:

Starting from Injuns versus Settlers, slavery and a certain protracted bar-fight over whether that ought to be legal, then skipping to the mercantile “robber barons”, strike-breaking, the way US car manufacturers hobbled competition by the nations’ railroads, the waterfront mafia, the way in which Standard Oil used its commercial clout, “Ma Bell”, the development of anti-trust legislation and its use on Microsoft by Judge Jackson (you can Google for it).

If you do, you may find a pattern. Which is that ethics has no place (and never had) in US business or politics. Nowadays it does have a place, which is to serve (nowadays) as a convenient cop-out in case of legal trouble in the form of a “Code of Conduct” (You know, that tome filled with Maoist gibberish that your company adopted along with its “mission statement”).

As long as something isn’t demonstrably illegal *and* so visible as to attract prosecution, it’s something that will be used. Over and over again. And that’s what Microsoft is doing, Ok?

And by the way, since when was using your commercial clout to disincentivize “the channel” or public officials from offering other people’s products “illegal” eh?

I don’t even need to make fun of this one. There is a word that describes the capability to live to a set of principles, and respecting and abiding moral values. Something this guy lacks. The word you’re looking for is integrity.

18
Jul
09

George Orwell is spinning in his grave at 3,000 rpm

In what’s a rather stunning example of irony, Americans who own a Kindle copy of Orwell’s Animal Farm or Nineteen Eighty-Four have discovered that their books have been mysteriously deleted. The works are still under copyright in the US (though not here in the UK), so the US publisher has the right to allow or deny the books to be disseminated electronically. And it seems, for whatever reason, that they have revoked that right. Amazon were obliged to delete the books remotely in order to comply. I used to love Nineteen Eighty-four. A very powerful novel (or a very powerful manual for modern governments, if you prefer). What annoys me though are the morons you see around the internet who love to trot it out whenever they wish to grumble about the latest government decision to outlaw moths or whatever the fuck it is this time. So in light of that, I promise I’ll only do this the one time. From a comment over on the Slashdot article:

IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH.

WAR IS PEACE.

FREEDOM IS SLAVERY.

OWNERSHIP IS DISCRETIONARY.

That is all.

17
Jul
09

Linux malware, sure it’s possible

Update 18th July 2009. If you want to read actual desktop environment developers (i.e. people who who know loads more than I do) discussing this vulnerability, then this 2006 thread from a Xorg mailing list may interest you. If you want to see the proof that it actually works, then go right ahead and read on.

I tried to ask questions about this on a forum and got banhammered for it. But never mind. I did a bit of research into it and discovered that a few people have already documented this possible vulnerability, and that it is somewhat legitimate. People love to say that the biggest security threat for computers is the users themselves, which is fair enough. Who needs to craft a drive-by download when you can just get the users to click on naked_chix.jpg.exe all by themselves? Linux makes it difficult, but not impossible, for malware to take hold, but it pays to be aware of the dangers, however slight they may be. I don’t personally believe that there is much of a threat at all, and the particular exploit I’m about to describe isn’t very special or clever, either, and can only affect a small number of people. The only thing that is somewhat interesting about it is that it can get root access without drawing attention to itself.

Continue reading ‘Linux malware, sure it’s possible’

17
Jul
09

Feynman lectures for the rest of us

It seems a few people are coming across my blog whilst searching for the Linux-playable versions of the Feynman lectures. Well that’s a shame because they won’t find any here. Or will they!? Bill Gates put a bunch of Feynman lectures online. Of course they require Silverlight in order to play properly. And no they don’t work with Moonlight, either. But that’s okay, because they’re on Youtube. And if you want the more technical videos, you can watch them here. Enjoy the lectures.

16
Jul
09

The sublime and the enormous

When you connect to an internet site, many things happen. First, your request is sent to a domain name system service, which translate the friendly-looking http://www.sex.com into the much more computer-friendly 76.74.255.123, which is the address of the server you’re looking for. The server gets your request and sends a bunch of information back. All of this data is broken up into tiny packets which all take different routes through the mystical tubes, and are reassembled at the other end–your end. And, after just a couple of seconds of waiting, you’re looking at porn. Magic, huh? The thing is, though, we are running out of addresses. We can get about four billion addresses out of the current system, known as IPv4. The system intended to replace it, known as IPv6, however, puts paid to all that. It has, give or take, 340,282,366,920,938,463,463,374,607,431,768,211,456 possible addresses. How to visualise a number that large? Well, I gave it a go, using a trick first used in John Gribbin’s In Search Of Schrödinger’s Cat.

Continue reading ‘The sublime and the enormous’

16
Jul
09

Trending trends week two

Everything went a little crazy this week.

Bloody hell!

Who's reading this thing?

That enormous spike you see was generated by a recommendation from here. A few more clicked the next day and the day after. And what did they read?

Continue reading ‘Trending trends week two’

16
Jul
09

I’m not a feminist, honest!

I was intrigued by some of the debate that has been going on lately about whether or not Richard Stallman is sexist after he made a joke at some conference. I wasn’t intrigued by the parts where people were arguing about whether or not he is actually sexist (of course he fucking isn’t you stupid fucking cretin), nor the speculation that any of the bickering has something to do with his thoughts on Mono (I’m not even going to try and explain what that’s all about), nor the debate about whether what he actually said was sexist to begin with (I mean, it could have been, but then I wasn’t there, although the guy who brought it all up seems like an utter cunt). I just realised that last sentence was horrible (I used too much parenthesis (sorry)). What did intrigue me, though, were some of the comments made by men and women alike who were quick to qualify their views on the subject at hand with statements such as, “I’m not a feminist, but…”, or on the other hand, “Feminism is getting really politically correct and annoying…” This seems more than a little odd, to me. These are arguments I see put forth whenever the rights of women are debated or talked about in some way. I was under the impression that the goal of feminism was equal rights. Am I missing something here? A quick glance at the Wikipedia article on the subject reveals that whilst there all sorts of tangents and philosophies surrounding it, that’s basically it. If you believe that women should have equal status to men, then you’re a feminist. So why do people seem so scared of admitting that they are feminists? And why do so many other people assume the entire feminist movement is only about ragging on men?

Any thoughts?

15
Jul
09

Send your name to Mars

This is pretty cool. NASA are going to take a wee microchip loaded with a bunch of names to Mars on the next mission there. You can make sure your name is on the list by submitting it here. Just one word of advice, though. Think very carefully about who might end up reading it. I know I did.

Do you?

14
Jul
09

Licensing of the tubes

Oh, the web, the most incredible machine known to man that she is. A massive step forwards in the evolution of the human race by all accounts. And yet the internet has been co-opted by fuckwits who want to enhance our productivity experience in a solutions-based diversity paradigm. Yes, business speak. Once the scorn of cubicle prisoners, now the hated object of billions of people around the world. If you haven’t noticed it by now, it’s because they haven’t got to you yet. But they will, if “cloud-computing” has anything to do with it. I hate the term cloud-computing. I hate it with a passion. It’s one of those disgusting Web2.0 phrases that makes me want to stick my head in a microwave every time I hear it. It’s more of that business wanker language that everybody knows and hates.

Continue reading ‘Licensing of the tubes’

12
Jul
09

Troll of the week #2: you guys need some new arguments

A few contenders this week.The first comes from the comments section of Computer World’s analysis of Google’s Chrome operating system.

Sorry, But Linux IS NOT Going to EVER…

Submitted by ITGrouch on July 10, 2009 – 14:26.

be a dominant OS player on the desktop. Linux as a server OS is robust and works well. However, Linux will NEVER be able to overtake Windows because the average Joe is not going to fuss over kernel recompiles, terminal sessions, etc. to get whatever flavor of Linux working on the desktop. Ubuntu is close, but still, no cigar.

Believe me, I would LOVE to see Linux overtake Windows on the desktop, but no matter how hard one blows the horn, it is not going to happen…period.

What was that? I can’t hear you because I’m too busy recompiling my kernel! Let’s do the motherfucking timewarp cause this guy’s straight out of 1995! Fail troll is fail. The next troll on our list isn’t trolling about anything in particular, he’s just being a cunt.

I think linux fucking sucks. (3.00 / 2) (#6)
by Del Griffith on Fri Feb 08, 2008 at 04:46:01 AM EST

No wait, who am I kidding?  I know it fucking sucks.

If you really want to be a UNIX weanie, just get OSX & be done with it.

Otherwise, get Vista Ultimate OEM, and install the SUA.

Some of us have better thins to do then compile codecs.

You tell em, boy! I absolutely fucking hate having to recompile my audio codecs every time I want to listen to my music. Such a pain! This guy is actually a pretty legendary troll, and he’s well aware of it. So I can’t quite bring myself to hate him. You just know that somewhere in the world, somebody is reading that comment whilst stale Cheetos are crumbling out of his mouth, sticking with the saliva on his chin, and laughing to himself, “Yeah, Lunix users are such fags durrp.” Successful troll is successful. Well done.

10
Jul
09

20,000 Windows computers to be destoyed.

According to a few articles around the web, that is. There have been a great many DDoS attacks lately. That stands for  distributed denial of service. Basically, it’s a way of shutting down sites and servers by overloading them. If you get thousands computers all trying to download from a server all at once, bad things happen. These attacks appear to be politically motivated, and the search for the people responsible is under way and such. But the interesting thing about all this is that

the Korea Communications Commission (KCC) said it has been notified by South Korean computer vaccine company Ahn Lab that the DDoS virus responsible for initiating the attacks, was set to destroy at least 20,000 contaminated PCs across the nation.

Can I be the first to say,

Continue reading ‘20,000 Windows computers to be destoyed.’

09
Jul
09

Trending trends so far.

So, my new blag has been going rather well for about a week or so. But who the devil is reading this thing? I decided to have a look at the site hits.

Who's reading this thing?

Who's reading this thing?

Continue reading ‘Trending trends so far.’

09
Jul
09

Asus and Microsoft. Where’s the beef?

Asus famously dumped Linux in the most tasteless way possible. By creating the shock site known as It’s better with Windows. Anyone who isn’t a complete bloody nincompoop realises that something happened behind the scenes. Either Asus went with Linux to get Microsoft to force their prices right down, or Asus went with Linux because that was the only choice available to them and then Microsoft talked them out of it. Even so, such things are easily refuted by the Microsofties around the web, as all they have to do is tell you to look for all those black helicopters. Any way, it was nice to see such a suggestion appear in a popular news organ, yesterday. Victor Keegan wrote for the Guardian,

It gave Asus a package it couldn’t refuse – a cheap version of Windows as long as it tossed the upstart Linux overboard. True or not, Asus has changed from being a successful proponent of Linux to an evangelist for Windows.

Nice to see it there in print. Thanks goes to @glynmoody for highlighting this one. His blog is pretty great, too, so check it out whenever you can.

09
Jul
09

Google Chrome OS. And a stupid top ten list about why it’s going to suck.

I wanted to write something about Google Chrome OS. But one quick look at my rss feeds tells me that the world and his wife has already written about it. The tech world has written about this so extensively in the last couple of days (whilst I was gigging) that anything insightful I can possibly write about it has already been said by every blogger from here to eternity. Even fake Steve Jobs is banging on about it. The major press got involved too, with articles appearing in the Times, the Guardian, and on the BBC. But if you want to read a bunch of boring shite from technophobes trying to explain what cloud-based computing is, then be my guest and go and read those articles. Here I’m getting down to the nitty gritty. The no-nonsense guide.

Continue reading ‘Google Chrome OS. And a stupid top ten list about why it’s going to suck.’

08
Jul
09

What I am scared of more than anything else in the world

I thought I should write about my greatest fear of all. With any luck, I can make it scary enough to make you scared about it, too. Of course my fear is nuclear annihilation. Many people are rightly scared of this happening. But I’m assuming most people don’t like to think about it very much. I suppose a lot of people hardly consider it at all. This is a good thing, I suppose. Still, I have dreams of nuclear doom on a regular basis. So here’s the story of why I’m so scared by it all.

Continue reading ‘What I am scared of more than anything else in the world’

07
Jul
09

Gig review: Why? at Audio, Tuesday 7th July 2009

I’ve loved this band ever since Dollface gave me a mix CD that included the song Waterfalls, so I was chuffed when she told me they were doing a gig in Brighton. How on earth she found that one out, we shall never know. Try finding anything about this band on Google. Talk about a ridiculous name. Ah well.

Continue reading ‘Gig review: Why? at Audio, Tuesday 7th July 2009’

06
Jul
09

Gig review: M83 at the Concorde2, Monday 6th July, 2008

It was rather bloody windy out. The smokers were all huddled in the Smokers’ Cage just outside the venue when we arrived. My girlfriend was worried that we’d turned up a little late. “Bands show up on time where I come from!” she said. I’ve never known bands to start playing on time, but there it is. The support band, Maps, started out, and they were pretty good. It took people ages to make their way to the front. What is that about gigs, sometimes? There must have been a ten metre gap between the stage and the first row of people in the audience. What the fuck? Are you people too cool to stand close to the music or what? Well what a bunch of losers. Me and my girlfriend got the best spot in the house to take lots of cool snaps.

Continue reading ‘Gig review: M83 at the Concorde2, Monday 6th July, 2008’

06
Jul
09

One command installation of Firefox 3.5 in Ubuntu

Psychocats posted a howto about how to install Firefox 3.5 in Ubuntu over here. It’s good, but it’s still not completely hands free. So I decided to make it a bit better. Copy and paste the following command into your terminal for Firefox-3.5 goodness.

Update | 8th July: Watch out, this will download the US version of Firefox only. If you’d rather have a version in your own locale, be sure to follow ol’ Psychocat’s version instead.

Code:
if [[ -e ~/.mozilla ]]; then cp -R ~/.mozilla ~/.mozilla.backup; fi; wget -c 'http://download.mozilla.org/?product=firefox-3.5&os=linux&lang=en-US' && sudo tar -jxvf firefox-3*.tar.bz2 -C /opt && rm firefox-3*.tar.bz2 && sudo mv /opt/firefox/plugins /opt/firefox/plugins.backup && sudo ln -s /usr/lib/xulrunner-addons/plugins /opt/firefox/plugins && sudo dpkg-divert --divert /usr/bin/firefox.ubuntu --rename /usr/bin/firefox && sudo ln -s /opt/firefox/firefox /usr/bin/firefox

All in one!




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You want to use something from this blag? What the hell is wrong with you? Do you want to fail at life? If you reuse the crap I post here, people will say, "Wow, I never knew anybody could be so ignorant!" Then they will go and find a weapon to beat you with. That's right. There's your god-damned copyright notice. You really care about that shit? Fine. Take it, copy it, pretend it's your own work. Do whatever the hell you want with it, I don't care.

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