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* Posts by Chronos

433 posts • joined 21 Oct 2007

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What? El Reg had a cheap dig at Putin?! SAY IT AIN'T SO

Chronos

Windows 8 and dog pats

I wrote a short essay on my first experiences with Windows 8 and the wonders of shutdown. There may be a few swearies in there.

3
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Philip Morris seeks pay-per-puff patent to help you STOP smoking

Chronos

Joyetech eVic

The eVic has had a puff counter from day one. It's one of the most annoying features ever to be built into an e-cig. IIRC, the Darwin, Evolv's first foray into variable power, also had a puff counter.

As for nicotine being "more addictive than cocaine" and other nonsensical utterances, that may well be true when combined with additives to enhance that effect along with MAOIs and other naturally occurring substances in tobacco but, on its own, it's about as dangerous and addictive as caffeine.

As for PM and the other big tobacco players (no pun intended), most vapers are happy to be free of their clutches so, frankly, they can just sod off.

4
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WTF is ... Virtual Customer Premises Equipment?

Chronos
Facepalm

My data went to 65,536 ports and all I got was this lousy browser

Of course, most customers won't notice the change. Heaven knows, they calmly accept the conversion of the once-open Internet with the Web as its interface into a dizzying array of nearly worthless single-function apps.

In much the same way as you have just described hypertext transfer the be-all and end-all of the Internet? Oh, the irony...

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2

Royal Navy parks 470 double-decker buses on Queen Elizabeth

Chronos
Stop

Still utterly useless

...without the tin cans and other screening elements this huge target needs to actually be able to operate. Given that the Brylcreem brigade scuppered the last attempt at updating our carriers and left the way open for the down-sizing of the tin cans, perhaps the budget for rebuilding our screening force should come from them?

Natch, it'll never happen. Aerial superiority is another of those phrases they like to throw out like it trumps everything else, never mind they had to move Singapore to make their case that we don't need to rule the waves. One wonders how the Falklands would have turned out had the Invincible and her Harriers not been available.

Good luck to HMS Queen Elizabeth and her crew. I have a feeling they're going to need it

/me raises glass to a willing foe and sea room...

2
1

Symantec: Antivirus is 'DEAD' – no longer 'a moneymaker'

Chronos
Mushroom

Look on the bright side!

Thanks to Symantec, everyone now knows what the PC decrapifier is for. That has to be a net positive, surely?

5
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Granny's Guardian: Acorn BBC Micro hero touts OAP watchdog kit

Chronos
Facepalm

Just what elderly people need!

Even fewer in-person visits from family and friends. I'm sure they'll all be very grateful.

3
1

US govt: You, ICANN. YOU can run the internet. We quit

Chronos
Pint

Oh gods!

Now it's going to be run by committee with consultations and stakeholders. What could possibly go wrong?

Beer. It'll help.

9
1

Microsoft asks pals to help KILL UK gov's Open Document Format dream

Chronos

Re: Kettle, met pot, pot meet kettle

VRH: "With the practical demise of KDE and Koffice there is no second implementation for ODF anyway so it fails to be an open standard."

What? There are three suites I can name off the top of my head that support ODF: OpenOffice, LibreOffice and the Android viewer. None of these solutions require a king's ransom for the general public to access, so they are both free as in freedom and free as in beer. A free standard simply provides a interoperability - there is no critical mass dictated to qualify as one.

KDE's current issue is their insistence on making every back-end, including those which most definitely don't need any more than a flat file with a few lines in it, into a bloody database and then changing the schema every time someone farts. For the vast majority of users whose OCD doesn't stretch to configuration, back-ends, process economy and wanting their e-mail client to work after a minor point upgrade, KDE is alive and kicking.

4
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Elderly Bletchley Park volunteer sacked for showing Colossus exhibit to visitors

Chronos

Re: Bad faith all around

BYW, the local Milton Keynes Amateur Radio Club were also ask to leave as they did not fit into the new vision of BP.

They were displaced by the RSGB's "National Radio Centre," which is a fancy name for an advertising hut for the major manufacturers of chequebook tat. The RSGB now do exactly what MKARS did - only badly, with all the soul, intellect and appeal of a putrescent deceased rat - with the sole intention of parting as many fools from the contents of their wallets as possible, as is the RSGB's wont. MKARS showed the public that amateur radio could be interesting. The RSGB simply see it as an income stream.

These two organisations were made for each other, it seems.

7
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Amazon, Hollywood, Samsung: PLEASE get excited about 4K telly

Chronos
Meh

Content

...and I'm not talking 4k, either. I mean content as in value. Why shell out on yet another new device to watch the same old crap? Dad's Army looks just as good now as it did back then, in whatever format, simply because it's *quality*. Britain's Got (no) Talent, however, will just be four times as hideous in 4k.

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Blighty's great digital radio switchover targets missed AGAIN

Chronos
FAIL

22dB SNR...

...and still glitches on the recovered audio. No, sod it, DAB isn't fit for purpose. No idea why they're so desperate to clear Band II, either.

2
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Finally it happens: MAN BITES DOG - after stabbing himself

Chronos
Pint

Old Rhino Skin.

Shame it wasn't a Doberman. Konstabel Els would be proud.

1
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BOFH: Backup server's failed? We have a backup backup server

Chronos
Devil

The Channel

See, you lot are still stuck with the old hard/soft/service paradigm. The smart money is in HCQS: Halon, carpet, quicklime and shovels.

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Typical! Google's wonder-dongle is a solution looking for a problem

Chronos

Re: Analogy overload

Give me a fiver and I'll tell you how to make it go away.

(Hint: it's called a power button. DAMN! I'll never get my fiver now!)

You're not married, are you? Thought not.

3
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Chronos

Analogy overload

As usual, Orlowski cuts through the bull and hype and tells it like it is. It's akin to releasing a bestseller with blank pages for you to fill in yourself.

Let's be honest, though, the TV we already have is dull, dreary, repetitive, shallow, judgmental propaganda aimed at the lowest common denominator. Can you really see savvy people paying for more of it? Christ, I might be tempted to give 'em a fiver if they make the existing stuff go away for a couple of hours a day.

Of course, they will get their payoff anyway. What's in it for Google? The same currency you pay them with now: They get valuable data on your interests. The hype just makes it easier for them.

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NASA-backed fusion engine could cut Mars trip down to 30 days

Chronos

Re: Astonishing and nice!

dssf: We might become a rep-Warp civilization in under 200 years, maybe even 100...

Aye, and we may be able to manage being civilised to each other before that, too. Something to look forward to...

1
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Health pros: Alcohol is EVIL – raise its price, ban its ads

Chronos

Re: In other news...

AC: I was with you until you wrote this. As a non-smoker, I still think back in horror to the time when I could happily be forced to passively smoke someone else's fumes and cough my guts out at any place and time!

I was hoping that would provoke that reply. Sorry to have manipulated you but that nicely leads me into another rant.

There isn't a smoker on the planet who will deny that smoking is harmful. We know it is but once it has hold of you it's very difficult for the head to overrule the body's needs. Until personal vapourisers arrived - e-cigs, if you like. I bought a couple of CE4 eGo kits in January. The second day I just forgot to light up and haven't burnt a strand of tobacco since. This is after trying all the pharmaceuticals and cessation "aids."

You would almost think, given the data about the place on just how much use these NRT products are, that the entire anti-smoking rhetoric is more to be seen to be doing something than actually doing it. After all, smokers die younger and the only people who pay more tax than smokers are motorists. Less pension, more income. What's not to like?

Now look what's happening. I agree you shouldn't have to suffer because of my habits. I agree that smokers' sidestream emissions are harmful to others. I'm sure many other smokers do, too.

What I don't agree with is the removal of choice. It seems Dr. Clive Bates, one of the founders of ASH who were so rabidly anti-smoking that it used to look like a form of zealotry, agrees.

Please note: I haven't stopped using nicotine. I do not intend to stop using nicotine. These things aren't medicine because medicine cures a disease. I'm not ill. I'm enjoying my nicotine just fine thank you very much.

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Chronos

In other news...

A broad coalition of ordinary people today released a report detailing the evils of unenlightened halfwits in ivory towers releasing reports on things of which they have no personal experience.

The report details several harmful behavioural traits these reports cause such as anger, tendency to damage inanimate objects and the overpowering urge to strangle the living shit out of yet another do-gooder incapable of minding their own fucking business.

"MYOFB's" chairperson today said "If we allow these people to continue spouting crap from atop their high horses, time will come when everything down to and including farting in public will attract either heavy taxation or be banned," followed by a loud burst of the trouser trumpet to illustrate his point.

Non-experts welcomed this report with reactions ranging from "About time, too" to "Fuck off, I'm trying to do my bloody shopping here! Sodding surveys..." As we were running away from that bloke, a small group of people standing in the rain outside the pub also gave their opinion on the dangers of unrestrained do-gooding:

"We're smokers. There used to be lots of us but the do-gooders told us we were evil and had to stand outside. Just go take a look inside the pub and you'll find there's nobody in there at all now. This is what they want - to ruin everything even remotely joyful."

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Help-desk hell

Chronos
Happy

Before ADSL

Customer on the 'phone, I'm the build manager for our company which was also a VISP. Being technical, I was also second-level support for the VISP arm.

Customer: Your <expletive> Internet is down again!

Me: I'm showing no outage at present. Do you mind checking a few things for me before I call our datacentre?

Customer: I need my e-mail for my business! I'm losing <expletive> money here!

At this point we launch into a diagnostic session where I find that her modem is connected to the fax line, the modem is responding nicely to AT commands and the PPP setup is correct as far as I can tell. Customer is getting increasingly vehement that our dial-up is mams vertical, although my console says it's fine.

Customer: <long trail of expletives randomly laced with other words that make no sense>

While she's swearing at me, I'm on the other line to BT checking her fax line. BT faults comes back with a very interesting cause. Back to line 1 where she's still expounding on my ancestry, habits and probable fate.

Customer: My business is suffering because of your <expletive> incompetence! You're a <expletive> and I'm going to sue you for loss of earnings!

Me: Have you tried paying the bill for your fax line recently?

Cue tumbleweeds. Sometimes you're the statue, occasionally you're the pigeon.

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Google shares dive as profits reported down 20%

Chronos
Facepalm

That'll be...

8K earnings (Beta), then?

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Only buy Huawei or ZTE if you like being SPIED ON - US politicos

Chronos
Facepalm

Pot...

...meet kettle. Kettle, this is pot. You both seem to absorb all wavelengths of light to a similar degree.

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Climate sceptic? You're probably a 'Birther', don't vaccinate your kids

Chronos
Thumb Up

Re: Climate sceptic?

S: BTW, it is possible to do this *and* innoculate your children.

Precisely. I was prioritising, not excluding.

With regard to the comment upthread, yes, my son does question me and my place in this household. It's his right as an individual to do so and disallowing that would be hypocritical in the extreme. What would also be hypocritical would be to allow him to think that power is fair, so quite often I win by default even if I'm wrong. It prepares him for the real world where this sort of thing is the norm.

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Chronos

Climate sceptic?

No, I'm just sceptical, end of. Bullshit is everywhere.The first thing I do when faced with one of these "truths" is follow the money. If it leads to one of the usual suspects, well, what's new there?

The best thing you can do for your kids isn't vaccinate them, it's to teach them to question everything.

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Torvalds bellows: 'The GNOME PEOPLE are in TOTAL DENIAL'

Chronos

Re: Gnome??

X: To be fair, the default Gnome 3 environment is just shi isn't quite right

The phrase you're looking for is "not quite fully in possession of a set of buttocks," a situation endemic in many projects where form trumps function.

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Chronos
Happy

Re: Gnome??

SG: I've tried tint2, but can't think of a use for it additional to those two.

OpenDesktop compliant notification area is one of the reasons I use it and, even then, it's in autohide mode. I use Pidgin a lot and having it iconify to the notification area saves desktop space. I could use Openbox's dock, but it's a bit ugly and doesn't play well with Twinview, which I need to allow me to have gschem and a datasheet in front of me at the same time without having to wear out Alt and Tab. It also gives you a twinview screen specific taskbar which C-D doesn't. Also indispensable is Tilda, having got very used to Yakuake on the F10 key when using KDE.

SG: Plus, for some time, I've felt that Gnome developers in particular have lost the plot. Like storing all configuration information in a single binary file. Fine until it gets broken, just like the Windows registry.

Those who will not learn from Windows are doomed to repeat its mistakes. The other problem I've found with all DEs is dependency on a particular ABI, annoying when you use a kernel and userland other than GNU/Linux as I do, which you touched upon with volume management. Solid in KDE takes this one step further into the realms of madness.

The UI should provide just enough to get work done, manage windows, interface with the underlying OS and then stay the hell out of the way. DEs are increasingly forgetting this prime directive.

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Chronos
Stop

Re: Gnome??

I've gone even further and ditched anything that professes to be a "Desktop Environment." XFCE and Enlightenment was looked at and dismissed for carrying the same disease. My session now consists of Openbox, Tint2 and Cairo-dock. What did it for me was bloody Akonadi crapping itself every five minutes and the huge swathe of shit I had to recompile every time KDE developers so much as moved their mouses. Yeah, yeah, cclient, delete ~/.local/akonadi (or something), do you want a refund, blah blah blah, not good enough. Losing the flagship e-mail client on every point release was not good publicity. Stop this nonsense forthwith!

On that note, a huge thank you to the developers of Sylpheed and Claws for producing a decent client that works without some awful, flaky RDBMS/SQL backend.

8
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US congress wants a word with ZTE, Huawei

Chronos
Big Brother

Not so obvious

This is, IMHO, more to do with the ability to insert snooping systems into telco kit rather than the reports going the wrong way. The least of us know how to monitor and block such things. The real issue is that the USians have absolutely no control over ZTE and Huawei and no access to their codebase so back-doors and other such technological internal rogerings will be harder to implement.

Sunshine, you're the enemy they're really concerned about, not the Chinese.

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British Minister likens Anonymous to fascists and racists

Chronos

Re: No....

That's like saying the turd that's floating is superior to the ones that sank. As with politics, the only difference is gas.

6
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REVEALED: Everything Everywhere new 4G logo ... a SNAIL?

Chronos

Ex snail

Not only that but it seems to have gone belly up. For a gastropod, that's disastrous.

0
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Kidney-for-iPad fanboi sues after illness strikes

Chronos
Thumb Up

The problem:

Three variants of the iPad but only two kidneys. This is not a sustainable business model for iFans.

6
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Where there's brass, silver and gold ... there's also muck

Chronos
Pint

Again with the Olympricks?

This huge smorgasbord of money making for fat cats on Olympic committees and commercial sponsors ceased to interest me, oh, let's say a day after it was "awarded" to London. It was probably sooner than that but let's give it the benefit of the doubt. It's costing the taxpayer millions and we're going to see very little from it. Worse, it angered me that some poor sod legally and innocently riding his bike got ape-mauled and slung around by the idiots who think that somehow a symbol is more important than civil liberties. We should leave symbols to the symbol minded.

Beer. Too much of that makes you sick, too.

1
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Firefox 14 encrypts Google search, but admen can still strip-search you

Chronos
Thumb Up

Thanks for the pointer to Disconnect. i missed that one in my usual privacy-enforcing toolbox.

Have an upvote ;-)

1
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Firefox 'new tab' feature exposes users' secured info: Fix promised

Chronos
Thumb Up

Just use ESR

No, not the mad conspiracy/gun bloke, Extended Support Release which, according to the roadmap, is good until V17's release, at which point V17 becomes ESR. Also available in Thunderbird flavour. YKIMS.

Nicely hidden there, Mozilla. We'll always find these things eventually, though.

3
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Wraps come off UK super-snooper draft plans

Chronos
FAIL

So much for The Great Repeal

...that we were promised when the coalition took power. Just goes to show you that George Carlin was absolutely right when he said that this shit we do every four or five years to shuffle things around means zip and is just an illusion to make you think you have control. That election shit? Doesn't mean a fucking thing. The real power lies with the lobbyists, corporations and civil servants; those don't change across parliamentary terms.

12
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TalkTalk subsidiary's customer data placed on the web in IIS whoopsie

Chronos
FAIL

Re: @AC 09:31

Try not to be an annoying, petty, pedantic little nutsack for the rest of your life, eh? Have a day off. Stalk Stalk is what people have been calling this company since 2008 and the Phorm fiasco.

SWAG: It used to mean screwed without a GUI. Now it seems they're screwed even with one.

MCSE: Must consult someone experienced.

5
2

Backdoor sniffed in ZTE's US Android smartphones

Chronos
FAIL

Re: Moral of the story......

DOn't but cheap Chinese shit, no matter how cheap.....

I see your trollface but it's still utter tosh. How is a setuid binary on a ZTE any different to, say, Carrier IQ being present and put there by the network?

Is it 'coz they is Chinese? I thought we were supposed to be above xenophobia these days...

This is why those of us who care about our prvacy root our phones: Without root, these suid shenanigans have a free hand. With root, a remount rw and a chmod/rm cures the problem without having to wait for the fix.

5
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'Catastrophic' Avira antivirus update bricks Windows PCs

Chronos
Flame

Brick?

No, it's bloody not bricked. Windows is not firmware. If it somehow overwrote the code on the motherboard's EEPROM, then it would be bricked. Until such time, it's a corrupt OS, i.e. soft and sod-all to do with hard or firm.

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Mozilla and Google blast IE-only Windows on ARM

Chronos
FAIL

Re: Google Calling the Kettle Black

it is just not possible on Android to choose any search engine other than Google. Nor is it possible to turn off cookies and take other privacy measures that are possible with (say) Firefox on the desktop.

Say what? My default search is Duck Duck Go SSL no-javascript. My default browser is Zirco. My preferences have it dump history and cookies on close.

Oh, and my ROM is CM7.

PEBTSAC [1], perhaps?

[1] Touch screen. Nothing attached to an Android device or anything else "smart" can be described, even loosely, as a keyboard. Perhaps one of those Bluetooth wotsits that is twice the size of the 'phone, but that's about it.

0
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Bought a new Mac Pro? 1-in-100 chance it'll destroy your data

Chronos
Devil

Isn't that a "feature"...

...of HFS+ anyway? You know, fill it up with tunez from iWotsit and it goes mams vertical with no space left just as you finish ripping your last CD.

1
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ICO mulls stiffer probe into Google Street View Wi-Fi slurp

Chronos

Re: Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006 s48?

The WTA(2006) is Ofcom's jurisdiction, specifically the RIS as-was. The rozzers will do nothing except assist the RIS if and when needed.

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Chronos
FAIL

Re: They've actually broken another law.

No, they haven't. To whom have they disclosed? Only themselves, which is quite correct and intended usage. Google, however, even have my MAC mapped despite SSID beacons being disabled since wireless went in at this location, a pretty clear indication that I don't want my access point being used in this way, and are disclosing it to all and sundry so they can locate the device seeing the MAC.

How do I know? Samy knows.

I say again, it's illegal. If Sergey could wave a magic wand and end up in a jurisdiction where they're subject to no laws, he'd do so. He has said as much. This, however, is the real world.

I have even appended my SSID with _nomap, even though it never gets broadcast. I suspect they'll take as much notice of that as they do SSID broadcast being disabled. Or would, if I had left the thing connected.

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Chronos

They've actually broken another law.

Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006, Part 2, Chapter 5, Section 48:

Interception and disclosure of messages

(1)A person commits an offence if, otherwise than under the authority of a designated person—

(a)he uses wireless telegraphy apparatus with intent to obtain information as to the contents, sender or addressee of a message (whether sent by means of wireless telegraphy or not) of which neither he nor a person on whose behalf he is acting is an intended recipient, or

(b)he discloses information as to the contents, sender or addressee of such a message.

(2)A person commits an offence under this section consisting in the disclosure of information only if the information disclosed by him is information that would not have come to his knowledge but for the use of wireless telegraphy apparatus by him or by another person.

(3)A person does not commit an offence under this section consisting in the disclosure of information if he discloses the information in the course of legal proceedings or for the purpose of a report of legal proceedings.

(4)A person who commits an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding level 5 on the standard scale.

(5)“Designated person” means—

(a)the Secretary of State;

(b)the Commissioners for Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs; or

(c)any other person designated for the purposes of this section by regulations made by the Secretary of State.

The offence is disclosure of the contents of the beacon packets (i.e. MAC address and location of the transmitter) where the transmission was not intended for their reception. The whole using other people's equipment to provide a location is an offence in the UK.

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Ofcom: The Office of Screwing Over Murdoch?

Chronos
Thumb Up

Re: Jim Morrow Gets it wrong

Secondly El Reg commentards have a duty to avoid [using the] emotive word hacking [to describe] the trivial task of accessing voicemail.

Nicely put, sir. At last, a bit of sense. I'd go a little further and say that hacking should not have the negative connotations that The Media[TM] attach to it within this community but your admonition will do nicely.

2
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Martha Lane Fox hits caps lock, yells at small biz websites

Chronos

Re: Go on...

Problem is, all the sandwiches will be egg...

1
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Boffins, tourists threaten Antarctica with alien invasion

Chronos
Trollface

Would that be...

Professor Chown -R www:www, to give him his full title? Relative of little Bobby Tables, by any chance?

4
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Powerful, wallet-sized Raspberry Pi computer sells out in SECONDS

Chronos
Facepalm

Just asking

Who ate all the Pi's?

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Woman spanked for dissing ex in Facebook snapshot

Chronos

@NoneSuch

What, you're going to sign on as an extra on East Enders?

2
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Attention tweeters: Your chance to win undying GLORY

Chronos
Stop

BMW?

You mean Audi, Shirley?

http://livesniffpetrol.s3.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/LetterFromAudi.jpg

2
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Polish lawmakers don Guy Fawkes masks to protest ACTA

Chronos

Anonymous

"Earlier this week, hacktivisits self-identified as members of Anonymous"

Right, time to clear this up. Anonymous isn't a group or organisation, it's not exclusive to "hacktivists," it's not a script-kiddie collective and you can't be a member of something that doesn't exist. What it is is a badge you can hang upon yourself to identify with a cause, which may not be the same as someone else's cause when using the Anonymous moniker. Apparently, the Polish parliamentarians got this exactly right.

If you support or oppose something that lots of other people support or oppose, don a V for Vendetta mask and you're all one of the same collective by discarding your identity and other opinions for this one issue. Unless you have two heads, ballot stuffing isn't a problem. It's really that simple - no violence, rhetoric or effort required apart from turning up. Stupid shit like "members of Anonymous hacked my cat-flap" really is nonsensical. Anonymous is a way to leave your own political views aside and join the greater good, to say "On this issue, I'm with the silent majority." It really is a subtle and elegant concept, which is why so many people just don't "get it."

3
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X Prize: Build a Star Trek 'tricorder' and win $10m

Chronos
Devil

Disambiguation

"In Star Trek, there were three potential types of tricorders: the medical one, an engineering one and a "standard" tricorder used for scouting out new territory."

ITYM "standard" tricorder used to make loud noises to draw hostile phaser fire towards the accompanying cannon fodder/security ensigns. This is in addition to really bright hand lamps and people who couldn't pass unnoticed in a riot.

Fire at will, unless his last name's Riker. As for medical tricorders, one message is "5cc's of something technical and attach a doofer with LEDs to the patient's head" (thereby drawing more phaser fire from something with more latex on it than a dildo) and the other is "parrot sketch."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JswhkwvtMV4

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