Author Archives: phandrens

Junk food and alcohol dominate Aussie diets, with only one in five getting enough veg, CSIRO finds – ABC News

Junk food and alcohol dominate Aussie diets, with only one in five getting enough veg, CSIRO finds – ABC News:

Junk food and alcohol dominate Aussie diets, with only one in five getting enough veg, CSIRO finds
By Alex Brewster
Posted 2h ago2 hours ago, updated 2h ago2 hours ago

The survey found the only one in five Australians are eating enough vegetables. The rest are eating a diet, dominated by alcohol, takeaway, food and confectionery.

Exclusive: Twitter removes suicide prevention feature, says it’s under revamp | Reuters

Exclusive: Twitter removes suicide prevention feature, says it’s under revamp | Reuters:

Twitter Inc removed a feature in the past few days that promoted suicide prevention hotlines and other safety resources to users looking up certain content, according to two people familiar with the matter who said it was ordered by new owner Elon Musk.

CLICKBAIT From Ars Technica: LastPass users: Your info and password vault data are now in hackers’ hands

LastPass users: Your info and password vault data are now in hackers’ hands | Ars Technica:

Also concerning is the fact that user vaults are now in the hands of the threat actor. While cracking the password hashes would require massive amounts of resources, it’s not out of the question, particularly given how methodical and resourceful the threat actor was.

Dan Goodin and Ars Techica should be embarrassed about their reporting on this story. Yes someone MAY have  your Lastpass  vault. I use 2 factor Authentication, so this means nothing. If you don’t use 2 factor, it means if the bad guys aim a supercomputer at YOUR vault only, in about 50,000 years, that computer will probably crack it, and get your passwords. It will have cost millions in compute power, but they MAY get you Youtube password! OMG!

I have one question. In 100 years, will you, or anyone you know care? Why would they pick YOUR vault? If you are the head of the NSA or a spy in the Kremlin, your data might be valuable, but not mine, and probably not yours.

If a hacker can access this site using may password, stored in Lastpass, in a hundred years,I will be long dead, and so will this domain, my bank account, and my Twitter account. 

PLEASE Ars Technica,  focus on the real security issues, Phishing, browser and operating system vulnerabilities, and social engineering. Or perhaps Crypto scams. Even The Donalds NFT card scam. Not a theoretical risk from Lastpass.


More from this Clickbate on Ars:

LastPass customers should ensure they have changed their master password and all passwords stored in their vault. They should also make sure they’re using settings that exceed the LastPass default. Those settings hash stored passwords using 100,100 iterations of the Password-Based Key Derivation Function (PBKDF2), a hashing scheme that can make it infeasible to crack master passwords that are long, unique, and randomly generated. The 100,100 iterations is woefully short of the 310,000-iteration threshold that OWASP recommends for PBKDF2 in combination with the SHA256 hashing algorithm used by LastPass. LastPass customers can check the current number of PBKDF2 iterations for their accounts here.

Whether they’re a LastPass user or not, everyone should also create an account on Have I been Pwned? to ensure they learn of any breaches affecting them as soon as possible

Say no more. – Phil Stephens

Smartphones Are a New Tax on the Poor | WIRED

Those of us who easily afford a phone, or internet connection forget how difficult and expensive it is for those on low or even no income to survive.

Increasingly, accessing government services requires smart-phone apps, text messages, and/or internet access.

Going to a government department, and queuing up for sometimes hours, and often being asked to come back with one more peace of paper for even basic services is difficult, and humiliating.

I have had to comfort a friend who was suffering depression, and struggling to cope with bureaucracy for her basic services.

It works for the government, because it is cheaper to have computers replace people.

It is the poor who pay the price…


Smartphones Are a New Tax on the Poor | WIRED:

THE HIGH COSTS of connectivity represent an increasingly large slice of household incomes for low-wage workers. Even though maintaining these connections has become necessary for many low-wage workers, their incomes have not kept pace. According to 2020 numbers from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, those in the lowest 20 percent of income earners spent $150 more a year on their cell phones than they did in 2016. The cost of connectivity represents more than half of what these households spent on electricity, and nearly 80 percent of what they paid for gas. As a proportion of household income, the lowest earners spent four times more on phones than high earners. With inflation looming, these issues are likely to get worse before they get better.

Only Four Countries have more COVID-19 infections per day than Australia!

I I’m shocked, and to be honest a little afraid, but in Australia we seem to have just decided that we have to live with COVID-19.

For two years Australia live the world in keeping COVID at bay. We closed borders, focused on vaccinating citizens and ensured masks, sanitiser, and distancing rules and were to protect Australians from the virus.

It succeeded, despite a few mistakes, but with a election drawing near, and the public getting restless, state and federal governments chose to abandon most restrictions and throw their country open to travel and to visitors.

The results are graphic and clear to see. Uur medical system is staggering under the load of people being infected on a daily basis.

Most of the infections are relatively minor because the majority of the Australian population has been vaccinated and many have also had a booster shot meaning that most cases are quite mild.

However the number of infected medical staff and ambulance crew is so high that hospitals all are struggling to maintain adequate services under the load of incoming cases.

Are we really so selfish that we can’t wear masks in public, especially at “spreader events” were large crowds gather in the interest of the lives of our elderly and at-risk friends and family?

Thanks to the ABC for an excellent discussion of the issues here:

Are we at a point where Australians tolerate people dying from COVID-19? – ABC News:

“We seem to have closed our eyes to the suffering and the deaths that are still occurring due to Omicron, so I think it’s bordering on irresponsible,” Professor Toole said.

Unvaccinated People Ordered to Stay Home or Face Jail in City of 14 Million

Unvaccinated People Ordered to Stay Home or Face Jail in City of 14 Million:

On Monday, Metro Manila’s governing council announced it is requiring unvaccinated people to “regulate their mobility” at least until Jan. 15, when a heightened alert order imposed on the metropolis is set to lapse. The restrictions may be reimposed if daily caseloads do not ease by then.

Under the order, unvaccinated people must stay at home except to buy essential goods or for medical purposes. They are banned from all restaurants, malls, hotels and all other leisure establishments. They can’t take public transportation, and they’ll have to be tested for COVID-19 every two weeks—at their own expense—to be allowed at on-site jobs. Violators will be fined up to $1,000 or jailed for up to six months, or both.

Christine Negroni » New Book on 737 MAX Explores Boeing’s Phenomenal Descent

Christine Negroni is an amazing aviation reporter, so to see her offer such a glowing review of this book makes it a must for me!

Thanks Christine, and thanks Peter Robinson.


Christine Negroni » New Book on 737 MAX Explores Boeing’s Phenomenal Descent:

In the world of air accident investigations, finding out what led to a crash is followed by finding out why.

Why is critical. That’s one reason I often write about the fallacy of attributing an accident to “pilot error”.

Pilots (mechanics, designers, schedulers, dispatchers, flight attendants, etc.) will make mistakes, that is inevitable. Tracking those errors upstream to see what in the system led to those mistakes is how aviation gets safer. Or, as Key Dismukes, one of my favorite human factors scientists once told me, “The airplane, the designer, and the pilot are part of a complex system. Under certain circumstances, things happen that leave the crew trying to figure out what’s going on.”


Robison book cover graphic 1347x2048

This Windows laptop almost (YES ALMOST!!) rivals the 16-inch MacBook Pro, and it’s 45% cheaper | TechRadar

This Windows laptop almost rivals the 16-inch MacBook Pro, and it’s 45% cheaper | TechRadar:

Almost every time Apple launches a new product, it often instantly becomes an icon, whatever the niche. The 16-inch Apple MacBook Pro is a fine example of that, but with excellence comes a hefty price tag.

Yes, the 16” MacBook Pro requires oxygen if you are buying a high end version. I am planning to do that in the next month or so…

It is the ALMOST part that gets me…

My 2015 MacBook Pro 15” is ALMOST as good as the 2019/2020 version, but not really. The package Apple is offering is powerful, well designed, has great GPU performance for video editing, and the longest battery life possible in a laptop of this size. And it uses macOS, a far cry (as I have learned over the last 3 years) from Windows.

After using, programming and supporting Windows laptops from Windows 3.11 to Windows 10, I have discovered the power of a beautiful and simple OS that allows everything to work with everything else.

Simply hitting Command + Space allows me to find almost any file using a word of phrase. How do you do that in Windows?

Learning the different key layout is a pain, but macOS is superior and much more consistent and reliable that Windows 10.

I own a Dell XPS 13, and every time I boot it up, I have to wait fo 10-30 minutes while it installs updates and reboots.

On the Mac, this happens every 6 months or so, and takes far less time. And I can decide to put it off until…

So, if you are cheap, get the cheap Windows option, I you want something that is powerful, light, and reliable, get Apple to build the machine you really need.

This leads some in the Windows sphere to see an opportunity to offer a competitive yet affordable alternative. Enter HIDevolution, a company that builds bespoke mobile workstations based on existing laptops.

HiDevolution has taken an MSI Prestige 15 A10SC laptop and upgraded it heavily. You could do this at home, but using an authorised built-to-order seller means there’s less chance of frying your laptop or having to return components because of incompatibility issues.