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1  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Interesting "stuff" on: July 04, 2015, 12:45:47 PM
Now THIS... this looks like lots of fun.  Though the groin tag at 0:33 makes me cringe.  Cry

Archery tag:
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2  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Be prepared against ransomware viruses.. on: June 28, 2015, 03:30:49 PM
I remember LaBrea.  The original author almost abandoned the project, citing potential legal action against him because the nature of LaBrea goes against certain provisions of the Federal Wiretap Act, namely:
Any person who intentionally intercepts, endeavors to intercept, or procures any other person to intercept or endeavor to intercept, any wire, oral, or electronic communication…intentionally discloses, or endeavors to disclose, to any other person the contents of any wire, oral, or electronic communication, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of a wire, oral, or electronic communication in violation of this subsection; intentionally uses, or endeavors to use, the contents of any wire, oral, or electronic communication, knowing or having reason to know that the information was obtained through the interception of a wire, oral, or electronic communication in violation of this subsection…

Basically, LaBrea does exactly that; intercepts electronic communication.  How that actually would play out in the courts is another matter, as TechRepublic's John McCormick pointed out back in 2003:
You probably think that this is a really stupid idea—the concept that you could be violating the law merely by monitoring what a trespasser does on a system you own. But that’s just your common sense speaking, and any lawyer will tell you that the law has little or nothing to do with common sense.

I think the honeypot concept mouser is talking about involves more of a "mousetrap" aspect; an application places a special file or fake network connection that looks (to a ransomware program) like something it would want to access and modify, but is in fact actively monitored by said 'honeypot' application such that when the file or network is accessed, the process doing the access is immediately targeted and shut down.  Sounds like a good idea to me; how to implement?  Beyond me.
3  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: More Firefox-Clone(ish?) adventures - Alienforce on: June 28, 2015, 02:53:07 PM
Yeah, I should have been a little clearer.  Basically it's anything part of the browser that's not web content.  Window decorations, icons, fonts, things manipulated by plugins, tab shapes, bookmark colors, etc.  Look through the list of chrome:// urls and get a feel for everything that can be manipulated.  That's chrome.
4  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: More Firefox-Clone(ish?) adventures - Alienforce on: June 27, 2015, 10:49:02 PM
the chrome:// thingy in Firefox is not indicative of a chrome backend, chrome is Firefox's euphemism for add-ons and shiny-shiny (like adding chrome to cars and household appliances). 

For a list of all the current chrome:// URLs, see here:

5  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Be prepared against ransomware viruses.. on: June 27, 2015, 09:23:55 PM
My mother-in-law got one of these.  Fortunately, I found the hijacked files shuffled away in an archive somewhere with the file extensions removed.  A little sleuthing and I got all that restored.  It was a little harder to restore the "My Documents" folder, Start Menu items, default icons, etc.  Whatever it was really went to town...
The clincher is, when I explained to her what probably happened, she suddenly knew, in startling detail how ransomware works and how the ransomware people con you.  undecided

My MIL is kinda funny sometimes...
6  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Document Production Specialist on: June 24, 2015, 07:25:24 PM
are you sure it's that simple? they work shifts and they even have managers/supervisors and they are whole departments of law companies
I am in UK, maybe things are different here?

Yes, that's exactly my experience as well.  The companies I worked for were basically outsourced copy shops.  Law firms would send us boxes of evidence or files and we would copy it all and send it back.  We had 3 shifts with 8-15 people per shift, and many law firms had their own department as well (chained up in the basement... just kidding). 
Training was pretty easy; besides how to run the copier, every shop had their own preference on how the actual documents were handled, how to use the drilling and cutting equipment, what the quality standards were, etc.  I worked with many people of all stripes, probably the most diverse workplaces I've ever worked at.
7  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Document Production Specialist on: June 22, 2015, 08:02:01 PM
That sounds suspiciously like "the guy who runs the copy machine".  I should know, because I've done that very thing for the last 20 years, still doing it (a little more advanced now with typesetting and printing, but it's still a photocopy process onto paper), and in all that time, my job title was always some variation of "Document Production Specialist".  
How to become one?  Apply for jobs that require you to work with copy machines and printers.  It's not a glamorous job, but it has paid the bills so far...
8  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: June 20, 2015, 02:56:38 PM
Given the personality of your average cat, staunch Libertarian  undecided

9  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Webassembly: Big four to develop binary format for the web on: June 20, 2015, 02:49:30 PM
Yes, it sounds like they're attempting two goals; 1- to make the language of the web more language-agnostic (at least on the front end; what's in front of the programmer that is...) and 2- as xtabber said, to push processing to the client rather than the server AND be more efficient when doing so.  

When I first read the announcements on this, I was like "Didn't we already have this in CGI executables?" but, like Java and .NET for the web, CGI bins run in their own little world, separate from the HTML they reside in.  Where JavaScript excels is in actually working with and manipulating the content.  WebAssembly is like the best of both of those worlds, with a few perks.

Heres a good Ars Technica article on it that goes into a bit more depth:
The Web is getting its bytecode: WebAssembly
WebAssembly, or wasm for short, is intended to be a portable bytecode that will be efficient for browsers to download and load, providing a more efficient target for compilers than plain JavaScript or even asm.js. Like, for example, .NET bytecode, wasm instructions operate on native machine types such as 32-bit integers, enabling efficient compilation. It's also designed to be extensible, to make it easy to add, say, support for SIMD instruction sets like SSE and AVX.

I wonder though... how long before we see embedded viruses and malware written for WebAssembly?
5.. 4.. 3.. 2..
10  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Webassembly: Big four to develop binary format for the web on: June 19, 2015, 08:10:02 PM
Mozilla, Google, Microsoft and Apple have decided to develop a binary format for the web. Called WebAssembly, this format could be a compilation target for any programming language, enabling applications to run in the browser or other agents.
WebAssembly is meant to allow programs written in languages other than JavaScript to run in the browser and other JS agents on the server, mobile or IoT.

from CodeProject News
11  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Interesting "stuff" on: May 22, 2015, 01:17:42 AM
What computer is she using?

That, my friend, is an Apple ][, ][+, or ][e with a green-screen monitor.  The design on the screen is the girl using either Logow to draw something interesting, or the Apple BASIC's PLOT command and some standard geometry formulas.
12  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Recommend some music videos to me! on: May 15, 2015, 11:39:22 PM
I'll just leave this right here...

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13  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Interesting "stuff" on: May 13, 2015, 07:08:36 PM
I have been tempted to try it, but I fear being underwhelmed.  Although the top rated review on Amazon is quite a hoot, and makes me want to:
I don't even know where to begin... words cannot describe the evil.

It was November of last year when I purchased my first jar of drug butter.
14  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: 10th Anniversary - long time member check-in thread on: May 11, 2015, 06:34:09 PM
I recall him saying he was going to step out for a bit, just didn't know when.  Remember his turtle avatar was slowly fading?  That was a hint. 
I have his email around somewhere, and I keep meaning to dig it up and touch base with him, but other things get in the way.  I'll do that now...
15  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Switzerland-based ProtonMail, yet another secure email service on: May 11, 2015, 12:09:12 AM
Well, I got my invite email, we'll see how this goes.

First look:
Nice web UI (no, really, it's pretty slick, if rather Metro-y)
1GB storage
No emails-per-day limit as far as I can see.
16  Other Software / DC Gamer Club / Re: A Few Hundred More Retro Games To Enjoy For Free. on: May 08, 2015, 08:44:52 PM
I remember seeing advertisements for the high-end Sinclair models in computer magazines back in the day and drooling.  My Timex-Sinclair 1000 with 1KB of memory seemed a toy calculator in comparison (Spectrum ads were where I first saw screenshots of multiplex terminal screens *drool*).  This is going to be fun...
17  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: May 05, 2015, 11:51:25 PM
both look good there - but #2 is preferable I think - and more foolproof too

#2 it is... I'll roll with that.  Though how it is in the screenshot probably won't be the final final form.

I'm still confused by the above:

I admit it is confusing, but all I was saying is that if task #4 has been initialized, but not started, then the value that remains stored in the Reset variable is the beginning time of the previously active task, so that explains the behavior.  Bug?  Yes, that should count as a bug.  But I'm left wondering what should be happening.  Should hitting Reset at the point after a new task is initialized set the start time to Zero?  Or the end time of the previous task?  (Actually, I have an idea; more about that farther down...).

So, a group of tasks can ultimately be treated as one task,
I have no ideas about difficulties of implementation. What do you think?

Task grouping sounds like a great idea, but I am at a loss as to how to implement it.  For now, anyways...

Maybe this is not yet implemented:
tasks are not saved on closing.

Whoops!  Time to implement auto-save, or a reasonable facsimile.  Should it ask the user to confirm on exit?  Or simply save the session with a possibility to recall on the next start-up?  Or a set-able option to automatically load the previous task list on start-up?  So many possibilities...

OK, so with most of the internal logic pretty set, here's what I'm thinking for the next iteration of user interaction:

New Task:
- Make a toggle for "Start at Zero" or "Continue from Previous".

- Reset should always reset to the beginning time of the current task, whether that is zero or something else depends on the New Task behavior.
- Make "Continue from Previous" the default 'New Task' action, but "Reset" will set the clock back to zero.  Much simpler code that way...

- I don't like the idea of the end time updating in the list, I mean, it's not even there until you stop the timer, so I think "graying out" the end time and total when re-starting a current task is a great idea; takes your mind off the list and back on the timer, and also lets you know at a glance that this is a task that has been continued.  Which leads to...

- Going back to an old task to continue the time spent on it is a good idea as well.  I know how it can be done, so that'll be in the next iteration.
- Grouping tasks isn't as easy, maybe even impossible without a custom component.  The StringGrid component has a lot of methods and properties to it, and is quite complex.  Trying to wrangle sub-lists into it would be problematic at best.

- Saving sessions should be a given by now, you're right; not saving the session is kind of unsettling.  But how to implement?  I'm thinking either offer the user to save the current session on exit, or simply auto-save and have an option to auto-load on next start-up.  That will be easy to do.  Hmmm... maybe even differentiate between saving a session and saving a final file; kind of like: if saving a session, then auto-load the session on the next start-up, but if saving a final file, the next start-up is blank.  You can always manually load a saved file from the File menu and continue as well.

So that's what I got, I'm going to dive back in and get something ship-shape for you to test, hopefully not too far in the future.  I'll keep the thread posted with any breakthroughs...  

18  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: May 04, 2015, 09:13:51 PM
I like version 2 for layout, though I wonder if it was a typo that the task-begin-end-total bar was left out?

It just seems we're so close to everything, because if there is a "stopwatch mode", then it can start with a timer of 0, start-stop works as normal, and "lap" creates its own "pseudo-tasks" aka the laps breaking down the segments of each task, below the main header of it.

It feels to me like this should be easy ... but famous last words?

Umm... yes.   stars
... and I have no idea what happened in the screenshot for #2, but yeah, I like that layout better too.  I may even have some ideas for a 3rd, but first I think I need to simply get the main stuff happening and get some feedback from Tomos as well.

19  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: May 04, 2015, 01:36:46 AM
I notice:
  • create, say, three tasks - without using reset (let each run for a time before creating the next)
  • then create a fourth task - it will show the endtime of task #3 in the timer
  • try Reset on task #4 - it reverts to endtime of task #2
should it not simply reset to zero? (again, I may be missing an application)

If my logic is correct here, if the fourth task has not been started yet, it may (should?) reset to the beginning time of #3, which is the ending time of #2.  Once the fourth task has started, reset should simply reset to the beginning time of #4.  Sounds like I really do need to implement some choices and defaults like  "Start new tasks at zero/Continue from previous."

Also, I have been working on some GUI changes, which I'd like your opinion on the layouts:
- No "New Task" edit box; Since we can change the Title of the task in the grid anyway, why not just have it all happen there?
- Start/Stop button
- Larger Clock
- Replaced the H/M/S buttons on either side of the clock with more compact Up/Down buttons
- Direct editing of the time in the clock

Layout 1 (yes, the button order should be H/M/S, fixed in the other one):

Layout 2:
20  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: silly humor - post 'em here! [warning some NSFW and adult content] on: May 04, 2015, 12:35:40 AM
One word: Thermite.  tellme

21  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: May 03, 2015, 03:25:10 AM
OK, I'd seen the issue with the timer font and it's not an issue with your DPI, but with the GUI elements showing differently on different platforms (I am doing all development on Linux, so everything looks great for me Wink ).  I can fix that, just the clock window may have to be a bit larger.  On my box, I use the Euromode font as my main font; I love the square-ish look and it's very legible, more so than the fonts it was inspired from (Microgramma and Eurostile) and makes a very nice clock face.  I wish I could embed it in my program, but I'm sure there would be licensing issues or something.  I didn't set the font, Lazarus just uses whatever the default is if I don't set it explicitly, so looks like it chose something funky Grin

I considered a start/stop button, but I thought using the clock as  button would be economical as far as UI goes; maybe I was wrong...  ohmy
As far as tasks, the last task in the list always has focus; at this stage of development, it's the only way I could keep things straight.  When you click on another task to change the name, that's all that's allowed.  Are you wanting to change between tasks to add more time on the selected task?  Great idea, and I'm sure I can figure out how to do that.  Let me know what you are needing exactly.  

For the Reset function, I think I know what's going on there.  It doesn't start with the Total, it starts from where the previous task stopped.  So you want the clock to default to 0 for every new task?  I can do that.  In fact, it may be time to introduce saving preferences, and have the option be "New task - Reset to 00:00 or Continue from previous time".  

@TaoPhoenix: It's not you, it's me Wink  I was trying to keep the timekeeping as simple as possible because even as it is I had a devil of a time keeping the time set-able but synchronized with real time, and the correct time showing up in the correct places.  That's why I made it so when you make a new task, the old task is "closed out"; that is, the time is finalized.  That can be changed in the final CSV file, but if I'm interpreting Tomos' comments correctly, maybe I should make it so you can switch between tasks to add time to a previous one.
22  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: May 02, 2015, 01:43:25 AM
OK, I finally worked out all the showstopper bugs I could find, and here's the first iteration:

I call it AFL Timer (A Flexible Logging Timer) and it doesn't quite have the final polish, but I wanted to let you and others test it and report bugs, refine features, etc.  If anybody wants to play with the source, I can send that along too.  Enjoy!
23  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Automakers Want to Outlaw Gearheads From Working on Their Own Cars on: April 23, 2015, 01:20:33 AM
Aha, this is about altering the control computer's software, not actual car repair.  You almost had me there...  embarassed

AFAICT, what they want to stop is folks selling aftermarket performance chips by saying that making them is illegal copying in the same way that making and selling your remix of a popular song without getting permission from the rightsholder is illegal (in their eyes, anyway).

I have a hard time seeing how this can fit into copyright. You're not actually making a copy of the software/data, you're just modifying pieces of it in place.

Well, if the original programming is present on the mod chip, which you bought from a mod chip vendor, then yes, it is a copy.  Ripping and modding your own ROM, not so much.  As close to the fringe that their argument is regarding copyright, I don't see a problem with things like voiding all warranties if the owner used a mod chip, and BTW good luck passing emissions testing.

I'm wondering if we'll start seeing replacement GPL'd software for cars anytime soon. Certainly it can't be illegal to delete their precious software after all...

Well, the man did say "... copying the software is at issue after all, not wholly replacing it, ...".   tongue

I dunno, the control software of a car is a VERY exacting piece of kit which is the entire reason we have cars that can get 20+ miles to the gallon and still have decent horsepower.  It takes very brave (or stupid) people to think is a good idea to mess with that, and I'm not one of them.  I'd never support making modding illegal, but I don't blame the manufacturers getting upset about it.

Is it me, or is the whole "Autonomous Car" thing seem like nothing more than a "personal bus"?  If I were a gearhead, I'd be bored too...
24  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: April 22, 2015, 11:39:03 PM
Wow, has it been 2 days?  ohmy

RE: [4a]
When you start a task, the start time is set.  When you take breaks, set the time back, etc. you are altering the End time, so when you finally stop the clock, your final end time is what gets calculated, which will reflect the breaks and fudges along the way, because you've done the adjustments "on the fly".  There will be no breakpoints in-between to add up.

I only get an hour or so coding time before bed, so I haven't made a ton of progress.  Currently reading up on the "TStringGrid" component, which is a somewhat complex beast.  Trying to get the highlighting on the current task, it doesn't automagically do it for you.  Also working out the kinks in the start/stop/new task workflow.  I think most of the business logic is done, I just have to make the pieces work together without causing more bugs, and I still have the exporting code to do.

I'll post more progress as I go...
25  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: Looking for a very flexible timer on: April 19, 2015, 05:12:57 PM
[1a] I can add that

[2a] Yes, and the way the "String to Time" function works, you enter something like "10:47:20" or "5:30" or even "7 pm", but not "4".  I thought the buttons might be a good way to add or subtract a few minutes or seconds at a time, without having to re-enter the time manually.  I'll keep them for now.
Also, I'm thinking that the 'Reset' button should reset the clock to the 'Begin' time.

[3a] To explain: I'm finding a bit of a dance between starting/stopping the clock and the 'New Task' button.  As the code sits, stopping the clock adds the end time and total to the current row, but re-starting the clock and stopping later will amend it.  Clicking 'New Task' starts a new row, leaving the previous one locked, but there is a bit of a bug; if the clock had never been stopped on the previous Task, then clicking New Task will simply start a new row without 'finishing' the previous one or stopping the clock.  Describing it now, I think I know what to do:
1- 'New Task' starts a new row with the task title, but no time, and will set the 'Total' time for the previous task and stop the clock, unless it is the first entry in the list.  The 'Begin' time will not be set until:
2- Starting the clock sets the 'Begin' time, and stopping sets the 'End' time, but does not set 'Total', as the clock can be re-started, which will change the 'End' time entry.
3- To finish up a sheet of tasks, simply click 'New Task' with a blank entry.  That will finish off the last 'Total' entry and stop the clock.
Sound good?

[4a] The Total is End time minus Start time.  The timer counts from whatever time it is set to.  Should it be different?
Editing just the Task entry in-grid while locking the time entries may be problematic.

[4b] Correct.  I could add in confirmation, no problem.

[5] For the 'Edit' menu, I'll add in "Set time", "Reset", "Reset to 0".

[6] CSV it is.  The Grid component's built-in export format is CSV, so that'll be easy.
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