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* Posts by Graham Dawson

1535 posts • joined 5 Mar 2007

McDonalds staff 'rough up' prof with home-made techno-spectacles

Graham Dawson
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Re: The bit that freaked me out...

Tell me about it. I didn't realise technology had reached that sort of point. I recall a documentary a few years back about a system that was designed to try and give some limited vision to people who were completely blind by crudely stimulating the visual cortex with implanted electrodes fed from a camera, but that was enormously clunky and only showed a few tens of dots. What this guy is wearing seems almost Star Trek in comparison.

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Raspberry Pi used as flight computer aboard black-sky balloon

Graham Dawson
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Now where's that anon who was pooh poohing the idea that the pi could or would be used for projects like this? I've got a special order of sour grapes just for him.

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Sleek new Macs violate fanbois' Retinas with display garbage

Graham Dawson
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Re: Wow! OS X *really is* just another Linux.

You...

Trolling only works if you actually have brains.

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US deploys robot submarine armada against Iranian mines

Graham Dawson
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Re: Move along - nothing to see here

We also had the RG-31, the vehicle that would have saved so many of our armed forces lives in Iraq if only we'd used it instead of the bloody landrover, before the Americans had even heard of the concept of using V-shaped monocoque hulls for better mine protection - and then we sold them off and went back to the landrover because... well, nobody actually knows.

This doesn't prove anything related to the article, except the MoD and the military top brass are fuckwits who will probably sell off our mine-sweeping capabilities just when the government decides that we really need to do something in the gulf and the Iranians decide that yes, they will start mining the strait of hormuz from coast to coast.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Police?

You think you could clarify that a little?

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Religious wars brewing in ICANN gTLD expansion

Graham Dawson
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Re: Dear religious groups

In other words you're discriminating against religious groups because they came to their conclusions via a different path to yours and added some flowery language to what is, in essence, the same basic statement and now you want to dictate what they can and cannot do because it doesn't fit in with your own beliefs.

This absolves them of nothing, I should add, but you really ought to consider what you're saying, because you are no different in the end.

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Graham Dawson
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Headmaster

Re: Unlike, say, religion?

43 You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbour and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? 48 Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.

Matthew 5:43-48

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Anonymous vows to wipe web clean of child abuse scum

Graham Dawson
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Re: create political and social pressure on these paedophile sites

"Yes, so raising the profile does what exactly?"

Raises their own profile. They get talked about, get noticed, get more "responsibility", get re-elected, get a better salary, get more prestige. Get to do it all over again with a new topic.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: create political and social pressure on these paedophile sites

They really don't, the whole paedo thing is just an excuse to law down another fistful of overly broad laws that can be used to lock people up for being the wrong sort of people. the wrong sort of people being anyone they want, after a while...

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LOHAN fizzles forlornly in REHAB

Graham Dawson
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Re: Silicon seal

Duct tape.

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Gaping 'open data' loophole could leave your privates on display

Graham Dawson
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In government speak, loophole means one of two things:

* We just found a way to get more tax out of people,

* We got caught inserting clauses that let us dick around without oversight

Closing the former can be spun as sticking it to the rich fat cats, when it normally results in low-to-medium income workers getting stuffed.

The latter can be dealt with by inserting more "loopholes" in the legislation used to close the existing "loophole", providing justification for all those existing civil service jobs and a reason to make a new quango.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Sounds familiar...

Ah yes, I remember that ground-breaking documentary, it was rather enlightening.

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Finnish boffins don tinfoil hats, admit Northern Lights are noisy

Graham Dawson
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Re: Deniers

Okay, okay, settle down...

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Is the Higgs boson an imposter?

Graham Dawson
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Re: The God particle ...

I always thought it was quite easy to offend the entire population of Yorkshire. All you have to do is be from outside Yorkshire.

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Live long and prosper: Spaceflight 'slows ageing process'

Graham Dawson
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No, considering these toxins are manufactured within the body as waste products that have to be excreted.

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Global warming: It's GOOD for the environment

Graham Dawson
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If the earth's climate was that unstable and that prone to falling over at the slightest push, we wouldn't be here to talk about it.

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Graham Dawson
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* or maybe 100ppm, just to cover the different estimates.

Not knowing how much of that is natural increase vs man-made either.

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Graham Dawson
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If we were talking about adding thousands of parts per million of CO2 to the atmosphere I'd say you were right. We are not, though. We're talking about adding, over the course of the last century, around 60ppm CO2. If you seriously believe that can cause the atmosphere to have noticeably less oxygen then you may need to go and read up on the quantities involved.

Besides, increased plant growth would liberate much of the oxygen again.

And consider: how much oxygen was liberated by industrial processes that transform oxides into pure metals? How much from cracking water to produce hydrogen? Taking your own argument of knock-on effects would prove your contention wrong anyway. Maybe I should have gone down that path instead. :) Regardless, the amounts we're talking about would not have any measurable effect, or even any effect at all, on oxygen levels or combustibility.

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Graham Dawson
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Lower oxygen levels? Are you kidding me? Atmospheric composition DOES NOT WORK THAT WAY.

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Open source incest: GPL forked by its coauthor

Graham Dawson
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Nah, it'd be open source, but it'd be the equivalent of an open source project written entirely in COBOL.

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Graham Dawson
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I don't know when crowdsourcing became a pejorative. It was originally coined from that lovely phrase "the wisdom of crowds" and assumed that collaborative efforts "sourced" from the "crowd" would produce high quality works.

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Did your iPhone 'just stop working' - or did you drop it in your BEER?

Graham Dawson
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Re: just an idea

The damage isn't from shorting (though I suppose that can happen), it's from the crud and oxidisation that occurs when water gets in the device. Unless you drop your phone in absolutely pure, distilled, de-mineralised water it's going to end up with all sorts of nasty oxidants in it that will eat away the circuitry in no time. You can't fix that by just shutting down.

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Google makes Opera bloggers an offer they can't refuse: Use Chrome

Graham Dawson
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"Some parts of Blogger will not work" is not an invitation, it's a statement implying itself to be true, leading the user to infer that blogger and opera are incompatible, not that they might be, yet the evidence so far is that it's also a big fat lie.

If you can provide proof that blogger breaks in Opera then it would be a statement of truth.

However you'd still be wrong, because you're attempting to argue that it's merely a helpful tip and not a warning that things will definitely break.

I don't use Opera and I like google products, but that doesn't change the fact that they're still lying. I don't like blatant lies.

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Big media little iPad stories suggest Apple is cranking up the spin cycle

Graham Dawson
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The argument falls down somewhat when you realise that "big media" mostly relies on what's trendin on twitter for its news these days. Apple probably haven't said or done a thing.

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GPS spoofing countermeasures: Your smartphone already has them

Graham Dawson
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Re: Typically 'Mercans

BAe Systems. Formerly British Aerospace, still has its headquarters in the UK. American?

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Orange San Diego Intel-based Android phone

Graham Dawson
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Re: battery life

Apps require emulation? I... Don't think so. They run in dalvik. Java in all but name. No need for emulation.

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BAE proposes GPS-less location

Graham Dawson
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Nice idea, but will it work in the empty wastes of flashpointistan?

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Mad fan-fitted mouse keeps mitts moisture-free

Graham Dawson
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A very brief dip wouldn't cause any problems, the nitrogen forms a momentary vapour layer as it boils off from the heat of your skin, which allows for silly party tricks.

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War On Standby: Do the figures actually stack up?

Graham Dawson
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Re: BS economy, the comments are more interesting

You'll find it's not watt-hours but watt-years, which makes the guilt-trip even more silly.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: annoying

I understand that's more of a collective effort.

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Nexus 7 and Surface: A bonanza for landfill miners

Graham Dawson
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Happy

Re: Annnnd...

Not entirely sure what he is today, since his entire argument amounts to "I don't have a use for it therefore it's a stupid and pointless thing". The same was said about electricity once. Nobody could see the point, until suddenly they could.

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Apple wins US ban on Samsung's Galaxy Tab 10.1

Graham Dawson
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Re: Tab2 @droid on droid

Amusing. Silly, but amusing.

I own, or used to own I should say, an iPod touch. I had one of the old iPod minis. They were very good devices (the touch in particular got me through many a slow day at work when wifi was available). Apple are good at design, however they are not above using conniving tricks and gotchas as part of a concerted effort to use the force of the state to crush their competition. They are using the courts to prevent a fair market. That is not justifiable in any way and I don't understand why people are continuing to claim otherwise.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Tab2 @toadwarrior

Compare like with like. Opening the app drawer and comparing that with the iOS home screen is a huge con.

Also the dimensions are different, like I said, and then there's the camera, and the buttons on the side, and the status bar across the bottom, the lack of a "home" button...

The fact that it's designed to sit horizontally.

Face it, your entire premise is bunk.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Tab2 @toadwarrior

Looking arond, say, Dell's website or maybe Alienware I see... nothing that looks like Apple. My little Zbox looks nothing like apple. The various cases I can buy for my home-assembled boxes look nothing like apple.

Are you trying to claim that apple invented industrial design? That's probably the statement of greatest hubris I've heard all year.

Speaking of cars, most do look very similar. The 2012 Ford Focus looks a lot like the Audi A8, which looks like the BMW 5 series, which looks more than a little bit like the Rover 75. They're all 4 door saloons, similar profiles, similar sizes, similar design features, but do you see BMW suing Ford or Audi over that? No? No. Because that would be STUPID.

Apple's entire complaint is that the Samsung Tab looks a bit like an ipad, as long as you ignore the different dimensions, the different shape and the different design features. By that merit every car manufacturer in the world should be suing every other. They don't because the functional requirements of a car force it to be within a certain range of shapes that look very similar. In the same way, a tablet has to be a certain shape to be viable. That would be a rectangle with round corners, a few buttons, a screen and a case. Apple's argument is that the samsung tab is a rectangle with round corners, a few buttons, a screen and a case.

Do you see the problem?

Possibly not, considering your entire argument seems to be that nothing good came before Apple, and everything bad is someone else's fault. That's possibly the most insane and ridiculous argument anyone can make. It's the literal definition of cultic behaviour.

If you actually place the tablets side by side (without photoshopping them) the differences are immediately obvious, not least the shape of several main features, the difference in size and the fact that it says SAMSUNG on it in bloody great letters. Only an idiot could mistake one for the other.

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HP open sources WebOS TouchPad tablet GUI

Graham Dawson
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Re: Okay

I for one am wondering if the generic version will run on the raspberry pi. Worth checking out at least.

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Even Apples sometimes have worms in them, admits Cupertino

Graham Dawson
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One of these.

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Mensch pal Bozier defends Menshn security, dubs critics 'snippy geeks'

Graham Dawson
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+ + + RECURSION DETECTED + + + REDO FROM START + + +

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Stonehenge WASN'T built by ALIENS - Boffins' shock claim

Graham Dawson
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Re: Not calculate!!!

Tom, we can guess at its significance from surviving religious behaviours. In Europe, especially northern and western Europe, a great deal of effort (and food) was expended around the winter solstice and a great many rituals evolved around the idea of bringing back the sun and the fear that it would go away forever. It was considered to be the most dangerous and magical time of year, with the nights growing longer and the days growing shorter, darkness and death and emptiness covering the land. Winter was always thought to be the time of year when the world might end.

So fine, measurement rather than calculation but the reasons for it don't change: they wanted to know when the sun was going to come back.

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Graham Dawson
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I was always under the impression that it was designed to calculate the winter solstice so they could know when the new year started. And also impress the plebian mass with their magical sacrifices that bring back the sun.

In fact a google search for the paper involved says that, yes, it was designed to mark the winter solstice, not the summer solstice. ALl those hippies turning up in the middle of summer have it completely wrong: they should be dancing around in the nudd in the middle of a snowfield. It'd definitely separate the posers from the genuine believers...

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No one watches TV, Nielsen, and you know it

Graham Dawson
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@ A J Stiles Re: sheilas wheels

I hang my head in shame sir.

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Graham Dawson
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Headmaster

Re: sheilas wheels

Adverts aren't technically any louder than television programmes, they just appear subjectively louder for a couple of reasons: the audio is compressed and everything is pumped up to near the peak. In a TV show you get a varied audio from very quiet to very loud, for a lot of reasons: they want you to hear the actors talking, they want to draw yor attention to particular sounds over a quiet background, and they don't want to piss you off and wear you out. Adverts on the other hand want to GRAB YOU AND SHAKE YOU LIKE A RAG DOLL so they compress and maintain a constant volume, exploiting a few quirks of how the brain processes sound to draw your attention. They don't want to hold it for long, just long enough to insert a message.

In addition, the use of constant volume and relatively high frequency sound effectively overloads the brain and places it in a highly receptive state; the sheer amount of information presented by a full spectrum of sound at the same volume forces your brain to stop trying to pick and choose what to process and just take it all in.

As far as I can tell (and this isn't backed by any studies, it's just me yammering at this point) the effect creates a condition very similar to that of a mild autism spectrum disorder. Most of these disorders affect the way information is filtered and processed by the brain, usually preventing effective filtering and prioritising, with one of the side effects being form of pronoia (or anti-paranoia perhaps), being unable to understand lies and implicitly trusting everything someone says as authoritative# simply because they said it. People with higher functioning autism spectrum disorders develop coping mechanisms that allow them to understand when something isn't true, or at least put it aside until they can find out, and also allow them to filter out unwanted simuli. We who are not "blessed" with this ability are turned into absolutely trusting innocents for just a few moments when an advert blasts at us. Just long enough for the message to start worming its way in.

They're a very primitive and ineffectual version of snowcrash. But they aren't any louder.

Also, volume isn't measured in parts per million. :)

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Product placement

The classic I always remember is that scene from The Matrix with a... Motorola was it? Floating serenely in the breeze right in front of the camera for nearly 15 seconds before suddenly whipping away into the distance. Similarly in the H2G2 film with that Nokia buzzing away in space right before Journey of the Sorcerer began to play.

There's product placement, and then there's that. You have to laugh...

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Vatican subtly shifts its position on The Blues Brothers

Graham Dawson
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Re: Reconsidering

And that changes what, precisely? He's still choosing his tastes based on whether or not somebody or some body of people to whom he is negatively predisposed are expressing a positive opinion about it. It would be like me deciding that I didn't like Star Trek because the current Russian president penned a positive review, or declaring I no longer thought positively about Blade Runner because Tony Blair liked it.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Bring on the Babel fish

I'd say it was written by someone who is more used to Latin grammar than English. It's an unusual construction but it does make perfect sense.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Reconsidering

So you're willing to stop liking a good film simply because someone you don't like thinks it's a good film? There's a term for that. Tip of my tongue... oh... ah yes.

"Fuckwit". Seems to cover it quite nicely really.

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CIOs should fear the IP police ... have your get-out-of-jail files ready

Graham Dawson
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Re: never have copyright transfer

Die-hard randians and objectivists tend toward the idea that copyright terms should either not exist or be very short - they're a creation of the state and a state-sponsored monopoly, which runs counter to the objectivist and more generally libertarian ideal of the smallest possible state with the fewest possible laws. They prefer to handle things with contract law rather than issue-based legislation as contract law is more consensus-based and handled through arbitration, whilst legislation is often the result of someone trying to inflect their personal opinions on everyone else. Very different fields of endeavour.

Of course there are always crazies. However I think it's safe to say that, if you meet someone who calls himself an objectivist but insists that the government MUST DO SOMETHING, they're probably not very familiar with the ideas they claim to espouse. And also likely to be no true scotsman. :D

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So you wanna be a Wall Street techie? Or anyway, get paid a lot

Graham Dawson
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@sir runcible

I guess Microsoft didn't learn much from their own interview questions then, considering the hole of their own making they're rapidly falling into.

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Graham Dawson
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Re: Impossible to answer interview questions

The answer is actually quite simple: None.

At least there's never one around when you need one...

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