Christmas is Coming!

 |  Misc

I saw mince pies and Christmas cake in Tesco (supermarket) today. I don’t know whether to be giddy with excitement that Christmas isn’t far off or cynical about Christmas stock appearing on the shelves already. That said, at least I’ve not seen any snowmen Christmas decorations yet…

Edit (20:46): Programs that try and sound good by talking about computers really piss me off. I’m just watching NCIS on TV and the supposedly super geeky DNA chick starts searching for a match on a finger print. All of a sudden windows start popping up and there’s supposed “code” flowing down the screen Matrix style. Her and her weedy colleague start hitting random keys on the keyboard in an effort to stop the hacker (yah, that always works) while saying stuff like “omg I’m being hacked! I’ve never seen code like this!” … why the hell did they not just pull the network cable out? No connection, no way for the hacker to get to the computer. Idiots.

Jem Turner jem@jemjabella.co.uk +44(0)7521056376

19 comments so far

  1. Jordie said:

    I love Christmas (am I the only one who does?), but really, people who stock Christmas goodies when Halloween is still two months away need to be shot at dawn and have their carcasses fed to ravenous porcupines.

  2. Amelie said:

    ^ I like Christmas music! XD I like seeing Christmas stuff in shops, but not in August/September. End of November/start of December is good enough for me. I refuse to hear Christmas music before December 1st though. Urrrrgh.

  3. Jim said:

    While I absolutely hate NCIS, the show and the real organization, I have to admit that what they did was possible. I’ve worked with quite a few biometrics programs for access control and all were Windows based. I also had the opportunity to play with facial recognition software for a physical IDS (Intrusion Detection System) that we set when I was at Texas, also Windows based. I’m sure they could make something that does similar recognition of fingerprints. Also the hacking thing. We perodically get our physical and network security audited through red-team/blue-team evolutions. Basically one of the auditors will just try and get into our network through any means he can find. We have a soft IDS that we routinely monitor for traffic anamolies. Once we find something, we investigate it in real-time. We don’t disconnect it because we want to minimize as much of the compromise as possible. Just because we take our machine off, doesn’t mean they won’t go to the next one, and we can’t just cut off the whole network. We try and do common sense things, like disabling remote services, and removing remote access to routers and whatnot, so that everything has to be done via console. Legally, we’re not authorized to counter-attack, we just isolate, contain, and collect information to help in prosecutions. NCIS still blows though.

  4. Jem said:

    @Jim: Oh, I’ve no doubt about biometrics and the like – just this week I played with a Sony VAIO that has fingerprint recognition. It was just the whole “we’re being hacked and we can’t do anything about it” Matrix-style fakeness to the whole thing that really grated on my nerves.

  5. Aravis said:

    Christmas decorations in September is a perfectly normal custom in the Philippines. The holiday even extends all the way to February. I’m not really sure why. There’s just something so festive and warm about the way we celebrate it, we never want it to end. Or it could be the age-old custom of giving money to your relatives’ kids. And your relative’s kids can go all the way to your husband’s sister’s neice’s brother-in-law’s second cousin’s son. They knock on your door and go, “Hey, it’s January, but the Christmas spirit is still in the air! Now where’s my money?”

  6. Shannon said:

    Dude, have you seen all those Disney programs? Maybe it’s only in the US, but those shows and movies show stupid characters who are “geeks” and they can hack ANYTHING. AND they can rewire and program things in TWO SECONDS. Awesome.

  7. Amelie said:

    Re your edit: I always roll my eyes at films and TV portrail of hackers and computery stuff in general. Computers on TV always have to make random blippy noises and must always flash on screen saying “Access Denied”. Then of course the star of the show must bash the keyboard repeatedly until the screen magically blips around and flashes “ACCESS GRANTED!!1!!1!111”. *ROLLS EYES x93805298203953*

  8. Alys said:

    There are some people living down my road who, to save the hassel of putting up and taking down christmas decorations each year, have them up all year round. I was on my way into town one May afternoon to find that a flashing Santa Clause perched on their roof, it was off in a couple of hours though… Where was the start tag Jem? Hmm?

  9. Karl said:

    Jem, you have to admit though, the VAIO fingerprint scanner would have worked better if the stupid bloody thing had drivers..heh. I’ve got that laptop in again at the sec..secure it may be, trouble free it is not.

  10. kachii said:

    One classic computers-on-TV moment for me was during an X-Files episode (X-Files do it every time but this one tops the lot) when they had a blurry, bad quality CCTV image (like they are) and they thought it was of Scully getting kidnapped (very tiny black blob in the centre of the screen), so Mulder told them to zoom in and lo and behold, a few hundred times zoom later, a perfect crystal-clear image of Scully being tied into a car boot! And also, ‘The Price is Right’ – “An astounding 2gigahertz memory and 1gigahertz RAM!”