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* Posts by Fogcat

153 posts • joined 1 Oct 2007

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Dungeons & Dragons relaunches with 'freemium' version 5.0

Fogcat

Not played for a long time now, but I remember getting early copies of the "Dungeon Master Guide" imported by someone who holidayed in the USA. As my group played the rules moved more and more to our own customised versions and ZX81 wobbly RAM pack combat resolution before finally emerging into completely rule free sessions; essentially moderated story telling.

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Running the Gauntlet: Atari's classic ... now and then

Fogcat

Midi Maze! My first ever networked game, we had fun with that one

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Future Apple gumble could lock fanbois out of their own devices

Fogcat

Re: Prior Art?

This is true, my phone does this already via Locale (the other main app is Tasker).

My phone goes to vibrate only at work, stays with the screen on when plugging in and playing music in the car and switches off the screen lock when I'm connected to my home wifi.

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So, what exactly defines a 'boffin'? Speak your brains...

Fogcat

Re: A plea: bring back real boffins on TV!

Ahh.. I remember watching this when I was a youngster, Jacob Bronowski even sounds like a boffiny name. (I have the book as well, presented at school prize day, for being a swot)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Ascent_of_Man

That was when documentaries weren't afraid to have someone TALK to you and show the person doing the talking and didn't feel the need to have actors dressed up to do a historical re-enactment.

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ICO raps UK Student Loans Co for leaking MEDICAL files and more

Fogcat

Re: Fines are no use

As someone who has had to deal with with these numpties (two children who have been through degrees and one now working overseas) I'm not in the slightest surprised that they they can't keep confidential data under control. They can't even find information you've already given them.

Plus the fact they are very keen to send out letters from what appears to be the Smith Lawson & Company debt collection company but is actually part of SLC.

They're a monopoly why isn't there a choice?

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Vinyl-fetish hipsters might just have a point

Fogcat

Re: Dual track is nothing new

It was "matching tie and handkerchief", it completely foxed me as well, thought I had a faulty record.

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Actually, there is an Arapaho word for 'pliers'

Fogcat

Re: Is there an Arapaho word for this?

"It's true because C3P0 said so. Or was it Marvin?"

I think it was Hugo Rune.

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Rise of the (tiny) machines: US boffins make nanomotor breakthrough

Fogcat

HeLa Cells

There's an interesting podcast about the HeLa cells mentioned in the article here

http://www.radiolab.org/story/91716-henriettas-tumor/

Well at least it was completely new information and interesting to me.

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A BBC-by-subscription 'would be richer', MPs told

Fogcat

Re: Follow what money?

"Ministers benefit from the current system because they get to hold the BBC's leash and ensure the right propaganda reaches the masses."

These would be the same ministers (of whatever government right or left) that complain about the BBC?

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Fogcat

Re: Oh?

"If as Elstein posits, 20 per cent gave up paying altogether, 40 per cent paid double and 10 per cent paid treble, then it would have over £5.1bn a year."

Do they really believe that if 30% were to pay the same as the current licence fee (simple arithmetic on the above) that 50% of people would voluntarily and happily pay more3?

I really can't see that happening.

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UK.gov recruiting 400 crack CompSci experts to go into teaching

Fogcat

But given the disdain with which Mr Gove regards teachers ("bunch of lefty whining do-gooder with too long holidays who think their experience means they know more than me") what sensible IT professional will be lured?

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4K-ing hell! Will your shiny new Ultra HD TV actually display HD telly?

Fogcat

Re: But will there ever be anything worth watching?

Running up to Christmas that was a perfume ad, black and white, male with a chiselled jaw driving and open topped sports care and so on. It was so utterly full of cliches I was waiting for the end of the ad for the punchline seriously believing it to be one of those spoof ads that appears glamorous but is actually for soap powder.

The those sneaky ad men fooled me - it was actually an ad for perfume!

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US military's RAY-GUN truck BLASTS DRONES, mortars OUT OF THE SKY

Fogcat

Re: Not quite the first thing to take out...

If wasn't (only) the viability of the technology that opponents of the "Star Wares project" objected to. It was to a greater extent about what it would do to the stability of the global political climate.

The Russians saw the project a a means whereby the USA could stage a first strike without having to worry about the retaliation and resulting "Mutual Assured Destruction" (Don't forget Regan had already called them an evil empire. If the "shield" even *looked* as if it was getting close to being viable it would have put the pressure on the Soviet hawks to lobby for their own first while that was still a possibility. It would have made the world a much less stable place, Perestroika would probably never got off the ground.

Of course in these days of asymmetric warfare you don't need ICBMs to totally change a countries culture.

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Boffins devise world's HARDEST tongue-twister

Fogcat

Re: Not Difficult and

I heard her interviewed on the Today program on Radio 4 and as usual it seems a nice headline opportunity has obscured what she's actually doing. It is all related to combinations sounds, what type follows what and so on and it's aimed at look how ideas get vocalised, what can interfere with it and has applications for rehabilitation of stroke suffers and other speech problems.

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Fogcat

Re: I never saw the point of this concept.

"Hell, most people if you play their won speech back at the with a few milliseconds delay will find it near impossible to talk."

This is true, sometimes when Skype-ing if the user at the other end is using speakers rather a headset you hear your own voice coming back delayed. When that happens I can only get half way through sentences..

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RBS MELTDOWN LATEST: 'We'll be the bank we should be ... next YEAR maybe'

Fogcat

"So, based on anyone's real knowledge of the systems in place, which bank(s) are least likely to have serious IT problems? Serious question, because I want to change and this is one of my important criteria."

From a purely customer service point of view I'd recommend First Direct. Always been very helpful and have sorted out things for me that weren't actually their problem. The phone even gets answered really quickly.

I can't answer about their IT systems, but they're a part of HSBC so there is probably some reliance on that".

No, I don't work for them or have any connection, just been with them since soon after they opened and found their service good.

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What is thy bidding? Han Solo’s shooter goes under the hammer

Fogcat

Re: A good weapon

"A bit massy to carry though."

Just avoid turning it upside down.

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Fogcat

Re: A good weapon

But a lazy gun would be so much more fun.

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Drone expert: Amazon's hypetastic delivery scheme a pie in the sky

Fogcat

Re: That "quadcopter decapitation"

"That "quadcopter decapitation" story would appear to be an amalgamation of two different stories:"

I'd just done my own research on that having wondered how big a quad copter must be to have rotors that could decapitate. And I'd come to the same conclusion - that it hadn't happened. Tsk tsk Reg, I don't expect urban legends from you.

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Elon Musk scrubs lucrative MONEY RING debut again on Thanksgiving

Fogcat

Re: At that moment Skizz realised he was never going home . . .

+1 for the Skizz reference

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PS-PHWOARRR: We review Sony’s next-gen PlayStation 4

Fogcat

First I'll declare that I currently own an Original Wii, an XBox 360, a PSP and a PS3.

The Wii hasn't been turned on for months and was mostly used for Zelda games.

The Xbox360 also hasn't been turned on recently and that's mainly used for platform exclusives.

I can't remember the last time the PSP was turned on, that's really been superseded by smartphones and tablets.

The PS3 (original fat model with hardware PS2 compatibility) is my main gaming machine (primarily because I "know" more people on PSN than XBox live) and is currently getting used for GTAV. It also gets used as the BluRay player so since I've had a 3-D TV for about 9 months I was rather startled the hear the PS4 doesn't support 3D BluRays. I never really used the PS3 for media as Sony never provided .MKV support.

Currently neither the XBox One or the PS4 have me thinking "I want one". If the PS4 was backwards compatible I *probably* would have gone for it after Christmas, just to have the new shiny. But with a backlog of games and several new ones due that I fancy playing I'm happy with the PS3. And I don't want to run a PS3 and 4 - there are enough wires and plugboards round the back of the tell as it is.

So.... until the next Uncharted gets released as a PS4 exclusive I'll probably be sitting on my hands; I can't see the sales being massive.

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Who’s Who: a Reg quest to find the BEST DOCTOR

Fogcat

Re: There can be only one

Mr Baker is the one for me, Saturday tea times at university the TV room in hall (we didn't have computers or even TVs in our rooms in those does youngsters) were a fun communal time (and of course there was Leela!)

In answer to "which would you have liked to have seen more?" I'd would have like Christopher Eccelston to have done more, he brought a darker, angry tone which I liked and I thought he was just hitting his stride when he left.

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Anonymous and pals gather in support of girl at centre of rape case

Fogcat

Re: A little more back ground (What no anti-fox protests?)

"more likely to get information instead of bombast"

...... on Fox???????? Really? On Fox?!

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Beyond: Two Souls - the game that thinks it's a Hollywood blockbuster

Fogcat

Re: Whoever devised quick time events

Ahhh Skies of Arcadia on Dreamcast, my first real JRPG. Loved that game.

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Fogcat

Re: More a TV remote simulator than a game

I don't know much about this game yet but I have played Heavy Rain and that had multiple different outcomes possible. It was also a "game" that some family members wanted to watch be "played". I had to wait until they were available before I could continue.

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Behold, the MONSTER-CLAWED critter and its terrifying SPIDER BRAIN

Fogcat

That second picture reminded me a lot of Flow

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_%28video_game%29

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Be prepared... to give heathens a badge: UK Scouts open doors to unbelievers

Fogcat

Re: About bloody time!

"the de-funding of all faith schools"

I'd give you more up votes if I could. I'm for banning all religious "education" for under 16s. I know you couldn't do anything about in the home, but Sunday schools etc. could go and school RE lessons could stay as comparative theology at the secondary school level.

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Fogcat

IF she did step down it wouldn't be her grandson who took over, but her son. You don't seem to have grasped one of the fundamental principles of monarchy: the subjects don't get to decide who the monarch is.

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Fogcat

Re: It's a good start.

"Atheism IS a belief - in the Standard Model of physics."

In the cheesy words of Mr Cleese "Explain pray the logic underlying that statement"

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Fogcat

Re: It's a good start.

"Capitalism isn't ideal but being told what you can or cannot believe or say in a public arena is a very slippery slope and this is slowly happening :("

I don't get where this Christian sense of persecution is coming from (yes I realise I'm making an assumption it was written from that point of view). It seems to be coming more and more commonly voiced and I'm not sure if this is some organised tactic or believers are getting upset that they no longer have the same influence when telling other believer or non-believers that they're wrong.

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Michael Gove: C'mon kids, quit sexting – send love poems instead

Fogcat

Re: Hey Kids! This App's approved by Joe 90's Dad (*)

And that "call me Dave" looks like Henry from Thomas the Tank Engine

http://pbs.twimg.com/media/BJ6e5V5CUAIv3AR.jpg:large

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Fogcat

Re: Hey Kids! This App's approved by Joe 90's Dad (*)

I thought everybody knew he looks like Pob

http://i11.photobucket.com/albums/a172/GrandLunar/Silly/MichaelGoveMPandPob.jpg

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Boffins demo on-chip entanglement at macro scale

Fogcat

Re: I didn't understand a word of that

Don't worry too much, I have a physics degree (from many years ago now) and I don't really "get it" either.

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HDMI 2.0 spec arrives ... 1.0 years late

Fogcat
Facepalm

Re: I cant wait to see the price of a Monster HDMI 2.0 cable

This site is also good for a giggle.

http://www.highendcable.co.uk/Nordost%20ODIN%20Speaker%20Cable.htm

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'Kim Jong-un executes nork-baring ex and pals for love polygon skin flick'

Fogcat

Re: Cult of Personality

When I first read that I thought you were actually posting from Gorky Park; they do have free public Wi-Fi in the park. Just on the other side of the main road from the park is the Fallen Monument sculpture parke

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallen_Monument_Park

That contains a lot of the old Soviet era statutes, Stalin with his nose broken off for example, very very interesting place.

Stalin seems to have been removed from public places but Lenin is still pretty popular.

(Yes I know this is getting well off the original topic)

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Universal Credit? Universal DISCREDIT, more like, say insiders

Fogcat

Re: Whoopsie.

"I have no affinity with any of the three major parties - I would not dream of voting for any of them."

So I assume you support a "minority party" then? If you don't vote at all, you don't get to complain.

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UK Post Office admits false accusations after computer system cockup

Fogcat

Re: Keeping the beaurocracy alive... @AC 8:13

The first thing to note is that since April 2012 the Post Office and Royal Mail have been separate entities. and the Post Office just has a ten year contract to issue stamps and handle letters and parcels for Royal Mail. The Post Office is effectively now just a commercial business; probably why you have to put up with all those video ads when you're queuing.

What ever it's faults the big plus with Royal Mail is that it is a universal service. I will cost me the same to send a letter to my next door neighbour as it does to send a letter to eccentric Uncle Hamish on his remote Hebridian island. If the Royal Mail is privatised I wonder how long that will last? I can't see DHL, UPS et al clamouring to provide a rural service.

I know RM is making profits (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-22605734) but think how much bigger board bonus would be if they didn't have to send a van out into the snow covered dales with one Christmas card for a remote farm.

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Throwing arms let humans rise above poo-flinging apes to play CRICKET

Fogcat
Headmaster

And I thought that throwing resulted in a no ball. So bowlers have had to change this natural throwing ability.

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Telly psychics fail to foresee £12k fine for peddling nonsense

Fogcat
Devil

Re: Cold reading - And that's not just there website!

I went to a talk a little while ago by a guy who was a professional magician. He had been on a show on local radio where three "psychics" did reading on various volunteers and the listeners voted on who was the best/most accurate. He (as a self confessed fake) beat the two "genuine" psychics.

Apparent their response to that was "But you ARE really psychic, it's just that you don't realise it.

Surly there must be some old un-replealed witchcraft laws floating around we could use.

(devil obviously appropriate)

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Apple dangles Spangles while Dabbsy's cables rankle

Fogcat

Re: Technology changes ..

"If you're going to pay £1800 for a laptop then perhaps you shouldn't baulk at £20 to make it compatible with older hardware."

As I've written in these comments before (to many down votes) at that price and mark up the £20 adaptor should be included! It won't cost the manufacturer £20 probably something closer to the fancy folded packaging.

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Graphene QUILT: A good trampoline for elephants in stiletto heels

Fogcat
Thumb Up

Thumbs up for a "As any fule kno" and also for "the enticing prospect of paper-thin trampolines for elephants wearing spike heels".

Lewis obviously had a good weekend.

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Google's teeny UK tax bill 'just not right', thunders senior MP

Fogcat

Sorry - can some one point me to The Register? I seem to have stumbled into the Daily Mail pages.

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Fogcat

Re: Can we check one thing? @Tim Worstal

But the tax is not really a tax on the dead person, it is effectively a tax on the people benefiting from the estate. By your logic any salary paid to you by your employer should be exempt from tax because your employer has already paid corporation tax.

And as you do mention in the last paragraph it's 40% on sums above £325K so if a house valued at £330K (let's call it a third of a million pound) is inherited your inheritance tax liability is actually £200 pounds? Are you really going to sell a third of a million pound house to pay a £2000 pound bill? I think you might be able to get a new mortgage to cover that bill even these days.

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Blake's Seven Returns

Fogcat
Facepalm

Blake's Seven Returns

Surprised that there seems to have been no mention of the following on El Reg

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/entertainment-arts-22079232

As some one with cats named after Blake's seven characters I'm not sure what I feel about this...

The fact that it's bound for the SyFy channel and that one of the Heroes writer is on board doesn't exactly fill me with confidence.

On the other hand Freemantle seems to be a British company so maybe it won't be a feel good, buddies against the bad guys that it could be with an American company in charge.

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Sonic the Hedgehog

Fogcat

Re: Water levels...

"Is it sad that as I was reading this comment, my head was playing the dunda dunda dunda dunda "

If you're sad then so am I - I was hearing the same sound

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New rules to end cries of 'WTF... a £10 online booking fee?'

Fogcat

Re: so...

Can't see how they'll be able to justify a surcharge per person, per direction when the payment is all on one card (i.e. 8 charges for a return trip for a family of 4).

But I'm sure they'll try!

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Vietnamese high school kids can pass Google interview

Fogcat

Re: why xp is ubiquitous

Have an up vote for a Tom Lehrer reference

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AdBlock Plus BLOCKED from Google Play

Fogcat

Re: More adverts, everywhere.

Ad revenues must be down

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Microsoft unveils even more tempting Kinect offering: Open source

Fogcat

Is the distance back you have to stand a software or hardware limitation? I know there is a wide angle accessory you can get but I've heard bad reviews.

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