3578 posts • joined 28 Feb 2007
In Sweden 10 years ago
SwedBank rolled keyfobs out over a decade ago, but then their banking system seems to be somewhat better managed than the UK's.
Ah that explains it!
I'm also with HSBC and used my Visa card heavily in the run-up to Christmas buying travel tickets from all and sundry.
Christmas Eve arrives and my card is locked, meanwhile the World's Local Bank (tm) has buggered off down the pub for a bonus-fuelled piss-up.
When I eventually got through to someone called Charles (in Bangalore) they couldn't explain why the card was locked, only that certain security issues had been raised - but nothing so serious that a few minutes listening to the godawful three bar HSBC anthem (all of their long-suffering customers will know it well) couldn't put right with a short spot of [tappity] and the requisite 'have you thought about buying home insurance from HSBC?' question.
Looks like phishing
Every time I hit the dreaded VbV page I do a double-take - it looks utterly shonky as if it was knocked together by some script kiddie. Wonky fonts and justification, the company logos haphazardly placed on the page. If it at least looked like the public face of a faceless private corporation it would be mildly reassuring.
Is nothing to do with the European Union, it's run by the Council of Europe and was created largely by British lawyers.
Having said which, the EU is also doing a lot more to protect us than our own government.
Are these perpendicular gothic cathedrals or just the regular Roman basilica type?
And as for the nuclear weapons - roughly how many cardinals would they weigh?
'Junior business minister David Lammy'
He's just as clueless when professing to be the universities minister.
In a heap of really shit government officials, Lammy stands out as especially bad - forget 'Blears bad' - he makes her look competent; travel far past 'Hoon bad', take the second exit at 'Blunkett bad' and you'll still need to fill up the tank to reach the particularly pointless realm inhabited by David Lammy.
That's not how it works
I'm not sure this is going to form a new Copyright Act or whether it will simply be incorporated into a new copyright treaty (which is the prerogative of the government and does not need any debate).
There have to be three readings of the Bill in both the Commons and the Lords to enact an Act of Parliament. If Parliament is prorogued before the Royal Assent the bill automatically falls and has to start from scratch. There's almost no chance any new copyright bill could pass through these stages, even if both sides were in agreement, before the end of this Parliament.
The first reading is a formality. The government minister (or occasionally a back bencher) announces that a bill on such-and-such is going to be introduced. There's rarely a vote at this point. The real chance to change things is at Second Reading. Here's where all the debate occurs. MPs can post amendments (which must be voted on) or the whole bill can be thrown out.
The bill then goes off to committee for scrutiny (make your own jokes here). The government decides whether to accept the amendments from committee and the bill is then introduced for Third Reading. Usually this is a formality, but the amendments from committee can be voted on. However it's very restrictive and usually guillotined.
If the bill gets to this point it then goes to the Lords for three further readings and a committee stage. The Lords can also suggest amendments or reject the bill. After which it's back to the Commons. Assuming the Lords have no objections the bill goes for Royal Assent. If the Lords have suggested amendments, the government can either choose to accept them or to reject the amendments - at which point, back to the Lords again.
But I suspect, Mandelson's Law, which is fully supported by the Tories will be worded in such a way that any changes to copyright will become law without any public debate.
A nuclear powered exoskeleton
Oh my - this is the sort of things dreams are made of!
Yes, but look on the upside...
...a clever government will soon realise each of these images is indecent and probably breaks the law. In which case each passenger can be fined for indecent exposure with the money going to the State - let's just call it a Security Levy.
Surrender to the Pervatron!
I think I've worked this one out.
I'm a threat to mankind because I want to fly. Meanwhile the bloke operating the man-sized microwave isn't - because he's got a peaked cap.
'We are working on a new model that has flashing lights'
'Hello? Is that Keyboards Direct? Hi, I seem to have sprayed coffee over my old keyboard and I need a new one - now. What? You'll be right round you say? That's fantastic! Thank-you Keyboards Direct.'
Saint of the day and 'Daily Pope'???
Oh if only Father Ted were with us now.
Makes a good case for the Swedish taxman
Our Nordic neighbours wouldn't put up with this nonsense; the kid would be called Annifred or Agnetha or possibly Lars.
1bn box office
Does that mean a whole lot of kids got named 'Titanic' or 'White Star Line'?
Thank goodness for the banking bailout
Otherwise there wouldn't be a supply of gullible morons with huge bonuses to buy a bit of dried up pork.
Approaching the Daily Mail event horizon
AIRPORT PAEDOPHILES SAW MY CHILD'S NAKED BODY
Kerry Katona's shock revelations pages 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and special commemorative pullout
Also inside. Do immigrants cause cancer? Melanie Phillips investigates.
Real problem is
Mandelson is concentrating on immediate gains in relatively well understood fields where Britain will be competing against other countries - most of which will still have large manufacturing bases ready to commodotise discoveries. So even if we do find something cool, we won't be able to make it.
He should be doing a DARPA and funding seriously blue-sky research in the full knowledge that things might not work out - but if they do, we will have a field more or less to ourselves.
In short, John Naughton is bang on the money.
Oh and the majority of money will still go to the Russell Group of universities whether they deserve it or not.
Football missing in on 'cashing-in' opportunity shock horror
I'm no Prince of Darkness, Simon Cowell, but did no one in the FA realise that there was an opportunity to run a prime-time, phone-in, six-month-long, Saturday night TV 'talent' contest to find the 'best' team song?
ITV are gagging for content and cash right now and here was the perfect chance to fill more of our gutter-scraping tabloids with slebs.
What do Stockholm and Milton Keynes have in common?
The answer is Segways!
One is a glorious Baltic port with stunning architecture, beautiful people and an enthusiastic embrace of the herring. The other has a large shopping centre.
But both of them are natural homes for the Segway. American visitors can zip around the Swedish capital on guided Segway tours if they find the city's frighteningly efficient public transport, or generously proportioned pavements all too European for comfort.
As for the little utopia that is Milton Keynes - the security guards at 'The Centre: MK' as it likes to be called, stand on them so they can see over the heads of shoppers.
Is butane and/or propane, neither of which vaporises in Titanian conditions.
As for exploring the place, can't we just drop the tedious Bear Grylls on the moon and see if he can survive using nothing more than a block of frozen hexane and his underpants?
Cheaper and it was designed to be suitable for bankrupt countries with lousy education and appalling infrastructure.
Not holding the World to ransom
It's just common sense economic policy. China needs to keep its economy growing and is aware that the next lot of cheap manufacturing countries are following along behind. Moving up the manufacturing ecosystem to produce finished objects is good practice.
As for China being left behind when the next technological leap occurs. I doubt it; their R&D (especially in rare earths) is second to none.
Oh and because it's China, I wouldn't be surprised if their mining groups end up being the ones who eventually get the contracts to extract rare earths elsewhere in the World. They'd only be following the example of Sinopec which has been tying up exclusive development contracts for oil and gas in the Middle East and Central Asia.
Why do these patent cases come along so late?
The iPhone's been on sale for three years, the Blackberry for even longer - and yet Kodak have only just got round to noticing an infringement?
What would have been nice
Is if Avatar had expanded interest in well-told, dramatically engaging, complex storytelling. But 'Dances with Wolves' for the ritalin generation didn't have any.
Headline 'Nuremberg Laws'
The Nuremberg Laws are nothing to do with the defence plea at the Nuremberg War Crimes Trial. Instead they were a series of edicts first announced at the Nazi Party Conference in 1935 which stripped Jews of German citizenship and their rights.
I think you're thinking of the 'Nuremberg Defence'.
So while the new British law is bad, it isn't comparable to the Nuremberg Laws.
The next standards war
Oh goodie - after finally killing off HD-DVD, the media industry can get down to doing what it does best - producing any number of rival formats to sting early adopters. Bonus marks will be awarded to the company that manages to include DRM in their 3D technology.
Count me out of this one.
Not to mention...
'I imagine that other leading causes of sudden unexpected death in Spain include vehicle accidents, cot deaths and big men with moustaches, knives and an adverse disposition.'
not forgetting people being crushed by donkeys falling off church towers.
Very small particles decelerate rapidly when hitting the atmosphere and are structurally robust enough that they just filter down through the air as meteoritic dust. Really big objects - think house size and above, are so massive in comparison to their surface area that they hardly decelerate at all and hit with their original velocity.
For objects between these sizes all sorts of things can happen. generally, the smaller and denser the object the more likely it is to reach the surface; however, relatively large (several metres across) stony meteorites (or the bizarre carbonaceous chondrites) tend to disintegrate through deceleration in the upper atmosphere and very little survives to hit the ground, or what lands is a shower of fragments.T =he vast majority of meteorites are made from stone, however, almost all the largest meteorites are made from structurally resilient iron/nickel.
There's been quite a lot of excitement recently caused by the release of classified data showing that relatively large objects are ploughing into the upper atmosphere and exploding on a quite regular basis. And when I say exploding - I mean think multi kiloton explosions:
Not the big story
The fact that the changes will cement the powers of the disastrous Digital Economy Bill is what we should really be worried about. That too is going to be shoved through Parliament with the full support of the Conservatives.
We really need a new Cold War
Not just because it guarantees a ready supply of lovely Pu238, but because it means we'll get more cool-looking hardware.
Can't they just...
...watch that advert for Samsung televisions with the hummingbird? It looks just as pretty as 'Avatar' and has a better plot.
'Heathrow was reduced to giggling chaos this afternoon when a passenger was found to have written 'Fuck You Alan Johnson' across his buttocks in magnetic poetry'.
And getting hold of the image would be the best DPA request ever made.
Lewis and Sun readers
This is a brilliant plan but falls down with Lewis' unprovoked use of wit, sarcasm, punnery, semicolons and three-syllable words.
Knicker Bomber Glory
Either that or Fruit of the Boom.
Not so useful defending Britain
A few flakes of slow and the country would be undefended until the gritters get out.
Improving security with Channel 4
Surely we will only be secure when the bowel-fixated Doctor* Gillian McKeith is running homeland security?
* Not really a doctor but it did get her a TV contract.
The SRBs are the most obvious weak spot for low temperatures as the rubber O rings need to remain flexible. The revised SRBs now include electrical joint heaters to keep the rubber soft.
But low temperatures are a real problem as ice accumulates on metal surfaces. During take off this comes crashing loose from the gantries and can impact on the Orbiter, gouging the tiles, which dramatically affects the aerodynamics. After the Challenger launch, the tiles on the wreckage were found to have experienced hundreds of ice impacts in the very first seconds of the flight.
Finally, all that ice makes the metal surfaces of the pad slippery for workers.
I feel very much safer already
Knowing that my personal information is being protected by the impossible to crack 'What was your mother's maiden name?' question.
Thank you Mr. Johnson.
BTW. Can the Reg find out how many New Labour drones have signed up for their commemorative Blunkettcard?
Component outputs (and PS3)
Can you play 1080p through component or do the movie studios assume you're a nasty pirate if you want to use those cables?
Also, I agree the PS3 is a great BluRay player, but it sucks as a DVD player if you try upscaling the image - it makes almost as noise as an XBox 360 and the image isn't any great shakes.
Just to be a total heretic, my el-cheapo Toshiba HD-DVD player does a much better job of playing upscaled DVDs, both in terms of image quality and not sounding like it's about to explode; and the few HD-DVDs that were released are indistinguishable from their Blu-Ray equivalents.
The end of the World took place Tuesday just before tea time. You might have missed it because frankly, it was a bit of a cock-up. The third of the seas turning to blood was cancelled since the organising committee couldn't agree on whether calling it 'the Sea of Japan' was politically correct in this day and age; the Antichrist cried off saying that with Simon Cowell still alive all of his work was done; and the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are still mired in a particularly malevolent contraflow just outside of Basingstoke (twinned with the Infernal Pit since 4004BC).
'"I don't remember exactly, but it seems to me it could hit the Earth by 2032," said Anatoly Perminov, quoted by AP.'
So they guy who's planning on shunting around a lump of rock the size of a well-proportioned ocean liner isn't exactly sure when it's due to arrive?
Well that's delightfully reassuring.
Can't wait to see the size of the power adaptor.
Isn't it a German train that just happens to be running in China?
It's tempting to laugh
But then you realise a lottery-winning spliff made from the finest dried vulture brains is probably about as sensible as using homeopathy - which is available through the NHS.
Thanks for confirming this
I've spoken to a number of authors who have released eBook versions of their novels and each and every one of them is fed up with DRM being imposed by publishers. In a couple of cases they have said they will not be licensing stuff for eBooks in future because the DRM is so restrictive they can't market their material in certain countries.
I guess the publishers and the movie industry are in the unenviable position of being more backward than the music business.
What if I'm allergic to lilac?
After all, this is meant to be a government all about choice - why can't I choose the colour of my ID card? Why can't I have one with David Blunkett's eminently slappable face on it?
But most of all, why can't I have one with clear instructions for Home Office employees who might be thinking this is a good opportunity to deprive us of our rights. Something classy like:
'Why don't you just take this card, sharpen the edges, shove it up your capacious arse and have a good rummage?'
Oh yeah. Merry Christmas.
Pot calling kettle black surely
'The service is pitched at clueless Blighty folk, who don't know the first thing about how to get their "digital stuff to work."'
You mean clueless Blighty folk like Virgin Media?
This shut-down will give Lewis a chance to recuperate with a mince pie and an even larger thesaurus.
This daft bint has to do ONE thing to retain her ministerial salary.
Just ONE THING - she has to remember to pick up her ID card so she can do her job promoting ID cards.
And she couldn't even do that.
There are things without spines lurking in mangrove swamps blowing bubbles that would make better government officials than Meg Hillier.
(And can we have a slightly larger FAIL icon - the current one seems somewhat inadequate for this case)
Serves them right
'2) There is a need to specify the landmass in which "Washington" resides'
For all the times they stick a picture of the Eiffel Tower on the screen with the caption
- Vid Hubble 'scope snaps 200,000-ton chunky crumble conundrum
- Bugger the jetpack, where's my 21st-century Psion?
- Google offers up its own Googlers in cloud channel chumship trawl
- Windows 8.1 Update 1 spewed online a MONTH early – by Microsoft
- Interview Global Warming IS REAL, argues sceptic mathematician - it just isn't THERMAGEDDON