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!feature

!feature

By Boris Tane
!feature (read as “not feature”) is a computer science podcast where we discuss unusual, eccentric and famous software bugs.

Host: Boris Tane @BorisTane
Twitter: @not_feature

Want to recommend a bug? Have a question? Or just want to get in touch?

Email: me@boristane.com

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Currently playing episode

Thou shalt not print on Tuesdays - S1E05

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Thou shalt not print on Tuesdays - S1E05
The wife of a Ubuntu user complained that she could not print on Tuesdays… This episode discusses the case of the printers who seemed to have minds of their own and would not print on Tuesdays. Incriminating line of code: CreationDate: (Tue Mar 3 19:47:42 2009) Sources: Original Bug Report: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/cupsys/+bug/255161 “file” command bug report: https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/file/+bug/248619 Music from https://filmmusic.io "Deadly Roulette" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Covert Affair" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Lobby Time" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Cool Vibes" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
09:20
June 23, 2020
The Orbiter that doesn’t orbit - S1E04
A space orbiter which failed to enter in its orbit… This episode discusses the case of the Mars Climate Orbiter, a spacecraft that was lost in space as it approached its final orbit around Mars. Sources: Investigation Report: https://llis.nasa.gov/llis_lib/pdf/1009464main1_0641-mr.pdf NASA System Failures Case Studies (August 2009): https://sma.nasa.gov/docs/default-source/safety-messages/safetymessage-2009-08-01-themarsclimateorbitermishap.pdf?sfvrsn=eaa1ef8_4 IEEE Spectrum: https://spectrum.ieee.org/aerospace/robotic-exploration/why-the-mars-probe-went-off-course Music from https://filmmusic.io "Deadly Roulette" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Covert Affair" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Lobby Time" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Cool Vibes" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
10:51
September 8, 2019
Was it a backdoor? - S1E03
A seemingly harmless piece of code made its way into the Linux kernel. It was later identified to actually be a malicious bug... This episode discusses a potential backdoor attempt into the Linux kernel. Code: if ((options == (__WCLONE|__WALL)) && (current->uid = 0))     retval = -EINVAL; Sources: The Linux Backdoor Attempt of 2003: https://freedom-to-tinker.com/2013/10/09/the-linux-backdoor-attempt-of-2003/ The Kernel and BitKeeper pat ways: https://lwn.net/Articles/130746/ An Attempt to backdoor the kernel: https://lwn.net/Articles/57135/ Wikipedia: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Linux_adoption#Timeline; Music from https://filmmusic.io "Deadly Roulette" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Covert Affair" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Lobby Time" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Cool Vibes" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
08:40
August 25, 2019
The Errata Inside, the story of the Intel Pentium bug - S1E02
A computer processor that gets its maths wrong… This episode discusses the case of the first Intel Pentium Processor, that was getting some calculations wrong. How did this end up in consumers homes and offices ? Sources:  Dr Nicely Website: http://www.trnicely.net/pentbug/ Britanica Website: https://www.britannica.com/topic/Intel#ref1069509  UCLA Notes on Sweeney, Robertson, and Tocher Division Algorithm: https://www.seas.ucla.edu/~ingrid/ee213a/lectures/division_presentV2.pdf  Numbers mentioned:  Prime numbers: 824,633,702,441, 824,633,702,443 Number used to demonstrate the error: 824,633,702,449 Music from https://filmmusic.io "Deadly Roulette" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Covert Affair" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Lobby Time" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Cool Vibes" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
11:33
August 18, 2019
We can’t send mail more than 500 miles - S1E01
Imagine not being able to send emails any farther than 500 miles...  This episode examines the seemingly ridiculous case of a university department which was unable to send email beyond 500 miles away. How did this happen ? Notes from Tray Harris https://www.ibiblio.org/harris/500milemail.html Music from https://filmmusic.io "Deadly Roulette" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Covert Affair" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Lobby Time" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) "Cool Vibes" by Kevin MacLeod (https://incompetech.com) License: CC BY (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
07:45
August 11, 2019