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back to article QUIDOCALYPSE: Blighty braces for £100 MILLION cost of new £1 coin

As we predicted yesterday, it hasn't taken coin-guzzling machine operators long to kick off moaning about the cost of converting kit to accept Blighty's new 12-sided quid*, slated to hits the streets in 2017. The proposed 12-sided pound coin. Pic: The Royal Mint We suggested the retrofit bill for the old thrupenny-inspired …

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It has one face...

The Queen's.

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Re: It has one face...

And is it just me, or does that rendering make it look like she has gills? The royal family can't trace their lineage back to Innsmouth by any chance, can they?

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Coat

Re: It has one face...

inbreeding does strange things....

P.

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Alien

Re: It has one face...

Not gills. Floppy lizard bits.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It has one face...

And on the reverse, the guillotine used to chop off the head on the other side.

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@Captain Hogwash

Floppy Lizzy bits?

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Re: @Captain Hogwash

Eugh! Pass the mind-bleach!

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Re: It has one face...

Not inbreeding, only the effects of being an old army lorry driver.

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Trollface

Re: It has one face...

for those downvotes not paying attention , royalty is defined by its inbreeding.

It is only as a geneticist, we can have a laugh about it....

P.

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Re: It has one face...

Not only gills - if you look at the image you can see she has one grumpy mouth facing forwards for when she's talking to prime ministers etc., but below that she has a smiley mouth to be displayed to the peasants kneeling at her feet.

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£500 to update each parking machine?

One suspects the council contractors are having a bit of a Gerald Scarfe with the opportunity to pluck an extra-contractual price out of thin air. If that's what it really costs then someone's done a very bad job somewhere along the way.

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g e
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Also and excellent opportunity

To upgrade the fecking things to take card payments at the same time so save foraging for change in the first place.

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Coat

Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

Golden opportunity here, they should be upgrading the machines to take BitCoin at the same time

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

Or remove them altogether. Your town centre shops will receive an up-tick in sales as a result of having more people willing to park. Said shops may then not go out of business, and empty shops may be re-filled. The council will receive money for having the shops, and not the parking.

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Facepalm

Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

Oh dear God! Way too much common sense from "monkeyfish", huge headache, need a lie down...

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

Except if you make parking free then all the parking spaces will be filled all the time by people parking all day, so there won't be any parking available for shoppers. You need good turnover of parking spaces, ideally, so low cost for short periods, and much higher costs for people taking up a space for a long time.

One should also remember that the value of the land that a typical urban car park takes up is often extremely high: is it better to use it for parking cars, or do you build houses, flats, shops, or business premises on the land that generate more wealth for the local community?

In reality it's much better to make it easier for people to walk, bus, cycle, train to the shops. Cars are horribly inefficient ways of getting lots of people into a small area.

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

"Except if you make parking free then all the parking spaces will be filled all the time by people parking all day..."

This canard is flown every time. It is nonsense. You don't let people park all day, you still time limit the parking, you just don't make them pay for it. ....numberplate recognition... in answer to the next question.

"Cars are horribly inefficient ways of getting lots of people into a small area."

No they are not. They are a very efficient way of moving a dispersed population into and out of a small area. We have run the experiment in real time. No more efficient method exists.

Town planners have to accept that people prefer (now need) to use their car to get from home to 'the shops'. Once they are in their car they can either go to the big box on the outskirts and park for free, or go to the town centre and pay through the nose to park. People are not perverse taken as a whole. If public transport was efficient it would be used, but it is systemically impossible to have efficient public transport with a dispersed population.

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

I reckon I have looked, 'academically' at the parking solutions in every large city on Earth. The only shared attribute is that they all suck. I like the idea of massive parking facilities, outside the city where you pick up an electric golf cart/bumper car and drive that into the city. If nothing else it would be fun.

Moving on, coins with flats on the edges completely disable one of the most clever, and inexpensive, theft/counterfeit protection systems ever invented. I have never seen a great solution to the not round coin issue either. False positives skyrocket with everything I've ever seen.

Have you ever tried to create a fake coin to put in a vending machine/arcade game? If you haven't, I'll just tell you it's really fucking hard to do. The most effective element in that system of protection, and the most difficult to fool, is the speed of the coin as it travels down the chutes. The speed of the coin, being a function of diameter and weight, is really, really tricky to bypass.

When you stick a coin in the slot, it is, effectively stopped for a fraction of a second (by a variety of different mechanisms) and the time is recorded from that point to another shortly after, to calculate speed. Incidentally, this mechanism is also what robs you of violent satisfaction after you shove the same fucking coin, into the slot for the 19th time with increasing force each time.

The speed test is the only, truly, dynamic validation check in the system. If you emasculate the system by eliminating that test, everything else is fairly easily bypassed with a little bit of measuring and weighing.

It's not I don't think effective countermeasures can't be created (they may already exist for all I know) but I really, really like the elegance of the speed test. That's just good engineering. Far, far more impressive, I think, than other, more complex alternatives.

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

"Cars are horribly inefficient ways of getting lots of people into a small area."

Unless you're an old fart, who is unable to get around in any other manner.

Or don't we old farts have rights in Old Blighty now? :P

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

"If public transport was efficient it would be used, but it is systemically impossible to have efficient public transport with a dispersed population."

I'll call bullshit on that one.

Here near Philadelphia, PA, we have public transportation in extremely heavy use every single day of the week.

But, for elders, a motor vehicle is the way to go. It's hard enough getting into and out of one's own car, climbing onto a bus or train is a herculean effort in the extreme.

As for me, I tend to purchase a month's worth of groceries in one go. That is a non-starter if I were taking public transportation.

Each method of transport to its task, for each excels at their task. But, to go to "the shops", it's largely the motor vehicle that accomplishes the task.

With human parking enforcement excelling at enforcement.

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Re: Also and excellent opportunity

Contactless card payments on those things would be perfect.

The person who thought phone payments were a good idea should be shot. Awkward, hopeless things.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

@Fonant: "In reality it's much better to make it easier for people to walk, bus, cycle, train to the shops. Cars are horribly inefficient ways of getting lots of people into a small area."

However, cars are incredibly efficient ways of getting heavy shopping back home. Shopping is a two-way trip.

Good luck cycling back with your new TV / crockery set / duvet / etc.

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Re: £500 to update each parking machine?

"Good luck cycling back with your new TV / crockery set / duvet / etc."

Yes, a very good point. Getting a new TV home on your bike would be a bit tricky. Mind you, I think it's nearly twenty years since I last bought a crockery set. And probably twenty years before I buy another.

What I do is use one of these new-fangled "delivery services" that some retailers have started using in the last half century. I think most of them use vans, not bikes, these days.

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do away with cash ... plot

Maybe a good excuse to get rid of all those pesky coin operated machines, and switch to credit/debit/NFC machines .. and screw all those without debit cards, tourists with incompatible cards

worked really well over here ....

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Facebook?

Why?

you have perfectly good forums without trying to help Zuckerberg's income with his very creepy walled garden.

No thanks.

(I'll keep my FB account for stalking though).

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Re: Facebook?

Facebook - so only people who don't have proper jobs can comment.

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Re: Facebook?

The rest of us can skive off in here...

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Headmaster

"it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Huh? Don't the twelve bevels make up the outer edge? So 14.

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

I count:

12 outer bevels - the 'sides'

12 inner bevels on each side

1 recessed face on each side

1 raised edge between the bevels on each side

Than makes a total of 40 faces, along with 96 edges and 72 vertices, if I count them all correctly.

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

It was designed using some sort of 3D CAD/CAM modelling software. Should be possible to get a face count.

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Boffin

Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Fair enough, but simplified to a dodecadonal prism then 14 is right. If you're going to be nerdy about it then you've missed quite a few radiused sections out (those corners aren't razor sharp) not to mention a boat-load of facets in the image.

I still maintain that the 15 in the article is correct under no reasonable interpretation.

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

...obviously I'm not counting the raised lettering, or the queen's head. If you count them, then good luck to you...

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Let's keep is simple and agree that it's topologically identical to a sphere :)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

40 is my answer too..(I discounted the detail, font face etc, as its not a fixed part of the coins shape, detail will vary over versions) but I'm not going to join arse book to post it there....

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Coat

Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

More importantly, where's the free model in order to be able to print your own?

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

It seems to be a question of definition. Are we talking faces, facets, or planar surfaces? I would include the raised textual detail as well as the raised edge as planar surfaces but as they are merely parallel surfaces slightly raised or depressed they do not define a face or facet. The 12 internal bevels, presumably on each side, as well as the 12 edge surfaces would all be facets. I could go along with 14 faces including the two sides.

On a side note, I've been wishing the US would do a faceted edge on the $1 coin for years. They boned the S.B.A. dollar by dropping the hendecagonal edge and changing it to an internal design element around the standard ribbed circular edge and making it too close to the size of a quarter. I feel a faceted edge would have seen it be much more acceptable to the general public as it could be easily distinguished by feel alone. The latest one isn't bad but it would still benefit from a faceted edge.

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Happy

Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Looks pretty much like a cow to me too- ( NOT Liz...).

Moreso than Tesco milk, anyway...

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

12 sides, 2 faces, and the Queens face = 15, duh.

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Who cares how many faces it has? More importantly, how many of these coins does it take to fill Wales/an olympic swimming pool/a pint glass.

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Each 3-atom triangle gives you a face. There are billions of em.

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Re: "it has 15 faces (12 bevels, obverse, reverse, outer edge)"

Good point, those aren't flat textures.

Far more complex than can be guessed.

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Deal With It!

Coin and Note currency were developed for human to human payment for goods and services. Not as a token for electronic vending.

If you want to stick a machine out that accepts currency meant for human to human payment then it's up to you to foot the bill for adapting the machine to handle a new type of coin. Be thankful it's only a dodecagon, not something crazy like a triangle or square, Australia has a dodecagon 50 cent coin so the hardware already exists for the basic type of coin, not it needs to be adapted to the sizing.

In fact, a lot of modern coin acceptors will most likely work when put into a learning mode and a few coins pumped through and others a firmware update.

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Boffin

Re: Deal With It!

" Be thankful it's only a dodecagon, not something crazy like a triangle or square"

That will never happen - coins must have constant width (i.e. if you rolled it then its height doesn't change, unlike a square or triangle) otherwise machines won't be able to deal with them correctly.

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Re: Deal With It!

The dodecagon doesn't have a constant width, mate.

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Re: Deal With It!

Have a look at this Numberphile video on YouTube www.youtube.com/watch?v=cUCSSJwO3GU. It discusses constant width shapes & solids.

(Numberphile is an excellent geek YouTube channel BTW)

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

Re: Re: Deal With It!

Indeed. Unlike the Brit 20 and 20p pieces, it's not a Reuleaux polygon.

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Re: Deal With It!

In fact, a lot of modern coin acceptors will most likely work when put into a learning mode and a few coins pumped through and others a firmware update.

Exactly.

Any coin-machine company that is run by people who are old enough to work will know that the size/shape/weight of coins is not static. If the "whole" machine needs to be scrapped and replaced, then unfortunately that's their own fault for being so short-sighted.

At most, the slot/coin mechanism will need replacing. They make these things interchangeable so they can be sold to different countries.

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Re: Deal With It!

A triangular rubber coin 6,800 miles along each side?

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Re: Deal With It!

If I'm not mistaken the image show one that does - the sides are rounded off. Although that may be just an artifact of the image. If that is the case this seems like a pretty bad idea all round.

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Re: Deal With It!

"In fact, a lot of modern coin acceptors will most likely work when put into a learning mode and a few coins pumped through and others a firmware update."

Well, they'll work until you're having a really bad day, you're running late, there's a queue for the machine behind you, and it's your very last coin, and then the thing's guaranteed to go straight through the bloody machine into the reject slot again and again and again...

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